Gala Closes out Packed Series of Events
Featuring Avery Sunshine
The 2022 Annual Black Tie Scholarship Gala on April 29 was a culminating event to a 12-week celebration leading to the investiture of Alabama A&M University's 12th president, Dr. Daniel K. Wims.
Student Hosts Nia Whitten (Miss AAMU) and Austin Smith (president of the Student Government Association) provided continuity and humor to a program that attracted a packed North Hall at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville. Dr. Jerome B. Williams, president pro tempore of the AAMU Board of Trustees; Dr. Roderick "Wayne" Watts, vice president pro tempore of the AAMU Board of Trustees and Marketing, Communication and Advancement committee chair; and AAMU President Daniel K. Wims provided additional greetings and remarks.
An evening highlight is the presentation of awards in five categories. Dr. Dora S. Washington, a 1954 alumna, received the distinguished Koinonia Award, which recognizes an individual and/or religious organization that has created a mutually beneficial partnership with Alabama A&M and/or its students. Other awards presented are: Diversity Award (presented to the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation); Small Organization Award (Gamma Mu Chapter Initiates, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.); Large Organization Award (Diageo North America); and Advocate of the Year (Michael Miller, Class of 1984).
The presentations were followed by invocation/grace from Rev. Maurice Wright, pastor of St. John AME Church; music from the group, R&B Vibes; a student testimony by Tierney Mays, and acknowledgements by Kim Davis, interim director of development, Marketing, Communication and Advancement.
Rounding out the evening was live entertainment from singer, songwriter and pianist Avery Sunshine. A native Pennsylvanian, Avery Sunshine is a Spelman College alum who has performed in venues ranging from Broadway to the Democratic National Convention.