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Vernon Jordan '57 to Receive Trumpet Award at Nationally Televised, Star-Studded Gala

January 3, 2003

January 3, 2003, Greencastle, Ind. - Vernon E. Jordan Jr., senior managing partner at Lazard LLC, a major figure in the civil rights movement and a 1957 graduate of DePauw University, will be presented with the Trumpet Award at ceremonies Monday night, January 6, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. Other honorees include basketball hall-of-famer Julius "Dr. J." Erving, actress Pam Grier, filmmaker and actor Spike Lee and actor-writers Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis. The awards show will be televised at 6 p.m. February 22 on cable's TBS network

Sponsored by Turner Broadcasting, the Trumpet Awards were created 10 years ago by Xernona Clayton, a CNN executive producer, to honor the achievements of African Americans in a wide range of fields. The awards' Web site states, "Trumpet Award honorees have made enormous contributions to our society and clearly enriched the lives of many. They are a few of the many who have sacrificed and weathered the storms of racism, prejudice and discrimination. As we pay respect to them, we pay deferential regard to our predecessors who made us the beneficiaries of a life time of struggles."

Vernon Jordan was cited as one of "The Top 50 African Americans On Wall Street" in the October issue of Black Enterprise. The magazine notes that Jordan has "dominated Washington power circles and served as a confidant to former President Bill Clinton" (read more here). In July, Forbes listed Jordan as the ninth most powerful black executive in America. A former president of the National Urban League and a recipient of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People's Spingarn Medal, Jordan authored the best-selling memoir Vernon Can Read! which has recently been reissued in a paperback edition. Mr. Jordan marked the release of his book with a speech at DePauw's Old Gold Convocation on October 27, 2001, in which he spoke of his days as a student in Greencastle (access a story with video and audio clips here).

You can learn more about the awards by clicking here, or read a story in Tennessee's Jackson Sun by clicking here.

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