More than 100 American Council on Education conference attendees Monday evening joined the staff of Diverse: Issues in Higher Education as the magazine presented Dr. Edmund Gordon and Marian Wright Edelman the John Hope Franklin Awards for lifetime achievements. Presenters of the award lavished praise upon Gordon, a longtime research scientist, a prolific writer on the subject of academic achievement and educational equity and an original architect of the federally funded Head Start program; and Edelman, founder and longtime leader of the Children’s Defense Fund, a national organization that has for decades pushed for policies that improve the quality of life for the nation’s poorest children.
This was the seventh year that Diverse has presented the John Hope Franklin Awards, and the first year the award presentation had been incorporated into the annual meeting of the American Council on Education in Washington, D.C.
“I feel greatly honored to be recognized along with Marian Wright Edelman. It makes this award especially significant to me,” said Gordon, who was said to be turning 90 years old later this year.
Gordon, who said he met the late historian when Franklin was a young man, credited Franklin as a mentor who urged the eminent researcher to become a serious and disciplined scholar.
Past recipients of the award include: Dr. Clifton Wharton, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Maya Angelou, and Dr. William Friday.