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2020 Dr. John Hope Franklin Award Winners Announced


Contact: Maya Matthews Minter
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 703.385.2411

FAIRFAX, Va. — Diverse: Issues In Higher Education is pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s Dr. John Hope Franklin Award.

Dr. Walter Allen, one of the nation’s most distinguished professors of education, sociology and African American studies, is the Allan Murray Cartter Professor of Higher Education in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He is also director of the Choices Project, a research initiative he founded, which aims to improve the academic opportunities and achievements of African American and Latino students in California’s higher education system. Allen came to UCLA after serving as faculty at the University of Michigan, from 1979 to 1991. For over three decades, his impactful research and teaching has focused on higher education, social inequality, family patterns, and socialization and personality development in the U.S. and abroad.

Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw is professor of law at Columbia Law School and the University of California, Los Angeles. She has written extensively about civil rights, black feminist legal theory, race, racism and the law. In 1996, she co-founded the African American Policy Forum to highlight the centrality of gender in racial justice discourse. In 2011, she founded Columbia Law School’s Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies (CISPS), where she now serves as director. She was a founder of and a leader in the intellectual movement called Critical Race Theory, which introduced the theory of intersectionality. Elected twice by students as Professor of the Year, this award-winning educator’s groundbreaking scholarship has impacted domestic and international policy around race and the law.

Frank H. Wu became the president of Queens College, City University of New York, in March 2020. He was previously the William L. Prosser Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of California, Hastings College of Law, after serving as Chancellor and Dean. He was a member of the faculty at Howard University for a decade; dean of Wayne State University Law School in his hometown of Detroit; a visiting professor at the University of Michigan; an adjunct professor at Columbia University; and a Thomas C. Grey Teaching Fellow at Stanford. He taught at the Peking University School of Transnational Law in its inaugural year, and again, a decade later. In his leadership roles at UC Hastings and Wayne, as well as on the faculty at Howard, he was the first Asian American to serve in such a capacity. The recipient of numerous higher education leadership awards, Wu received the largest grant issued by the federal Civil Liberties and Public Education Fund, for co-authoring Race, Rights and Reparation: Law and the Japanese Internment. Author of Yellow: Race in America Beyond Black and White, Wu’s columns have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press and Diverse.

Award Presentation:

The March 19, 2020 edition of Diverse included profiles on this year’s award recipients. The presentation of the awards, originally scheduled to take place on the evening of Monday, March 16, 2020, during the 102nd centennial meeting of the American Council on Education (ACE) at the Marriott Marquis Marina in San Diego, Ca., was postponed to a November 16, 2020 virtual ceremony.

About this Award:

The Dr. John Hope Franklin Award was created in 2004 to pay tribute to the late Franklin, a historian, writer, educator and humanitarian who made significant contributions to shaping the perspective on American history in the 20th century.

With Franklin’s permission, Diverse created the award to institutionalize and celebrate his scholarly contributions to the nation. The individuals and organizations chosen for the award are those whose contributions to higher education are consistent with the highest standards of excellence and equity.

Past recipients have included Dr. Clifton Wharton, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Maya Angelou, the late Dr. William Friday and Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole, to name a few.


For over three decades, Diverse: Issues In Higher Education has been America’s premier source of timely news, provocative commentary, insightful interviews and in-depth special reports on diversity in higher education. Savvy individuals who appreciate the crucial and ever-changing role that higher education plays in the lives of student and professionals, and their families and communities, make reading Diverse a regular habit.
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