The American Conference on Diversity will honor Nicholas A. Ferroni, a Union High School (NJ) history teacher, with the Diversity in Education Champion Award on Thursday, April 6, during the 69th Annual Humanitarian Awards Gala at the Pleasantdale Château in West Orange, NJ.
Mr. Ferroni is an educator and nationally recognized social activist who mentors and inspires students to reach their goals, while driving a national dialogue about education reform. As a teacher to mostly lower income students in his hometown of Union, Mr. Ferroni developed a “Teach the Truth” campaign to incorporate more minority figures in social studies curriculum, as well as to include the history of the gay and lesbian civil rights movement. In addition, he helped found his school’s Gay Straight Alliance and Feminist Club.
His social experiment on the importance of gender equality in politics went viral, garnering the attention of news outlets and television programs nationwide. The View’s Whoopi Goldberg called it “the best social experiment ever.” Watch this video of Mr. Ferroni helping students explore what it means to be disproportionately represented in Congress: http://bit.ly/2lsZVsh.
Mr. Ferroni also released a controversial PSA, “Preach What You Practice,” calling on today’s top professional athletes and reminding them of their obligation as a role model to help improve the nutritional health of America’s youth.
Mr. Ferroni was recently named “Upstander of the Year” by the Human Rights Campaign for his outspoken advocacy and support for LGBTQ youth. He was noted as one the “100 Making a Difference” and one of the “Most Influential Educators in America.” His expertise and strong opinions about education have made him a sought-after expert on nationally known platforms, including ABC’s The View, MSNBC, The Huffington Post, and more.
This year’s Humanitarian Awards Gala is co-chaired by Grammy-Award winning music legend Dionne Warwick (2015 Humanitarian Award honoree) and Berkeley College Chair Kevin Luing (2016 Humanitarian Award honoree) and will be hosted by Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap. Five other outstanding diversity and inclusion ambassadors will be recognized during the gala:
► Cid Wilson, President & CEO of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility – HACR (Diversity & Inclusion Champion), is a global trailblazer for diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
► RWJBarnabas Health (Healthcare) is the most comprehensive healthcare delivery system in New Jersey with a service area covering five million people. The CEO of RWJBarnabas Health is Barry Ostrowsky.
► Mildred Scott, Middlesex County Sheriff (Law Enforcement), is the first female Sheriff in Middlesex County and the first African-American Sheriff in the state of New Jersey.
► Dr. Pamela Thomas, Principal at OIC of America’s, Career and Academic Development Institute (Bridge Builder), is changing the lives of under-credited youth in Camden, NJ, and Philadelphia.
Proceeds from the Humanitarian Awards dinner will support the American Conference on Diversity’s mission to build just and inclusive schools, workplaces, and communities through awareness, education, and advocacy. Our work to fight bias, bigotry, and injustice is needed now more than ever.
By uniting top executives and community leaders committed to this mission, the American Conference on Diversity aims to raise $300,000 to continue to provide diversity and inclusion services, including the signature Lead for Diversity Institute. The yearlong, life-changing program has impacted more than 3,300 high-school students since 1995 by providing leadership-development and human-relations training so youth can stand up to hate, educate their peers, and be better prepared to enter today’s workplace.
Dinner sponsors include: ADP, Berkeley College, Verizon, BASF, L’Oréal USA, Investors Bank, New Jersey Resources, NJM Insurance Company, PSEG, Genova Burns, PNC Bank, Prudential Financial, RWJBarnabas Health, Saint Peter’s University Hospital, and Nicholas Martini Foundation.
In addition to networking, dining, and entertainment, this year’s fundraiser will include a silent auction and prizes. The annual event will kick off with a stellar cocktail and networking reception at 6 p.m. at the spectacular Pleasantdale Château (757 Eagle Rock Avenue, West Orange, NJ 07052).
Seats are limited! To purchase tickets, become a sponsor, or make silent auction item donations, contact Gala Coordinator Barbara Getze at firstname.lastname@example.org or (800) 626-8097 today. Tickets must be purchased in advance.
About the American Conference on Diversity
The American Conference on Diversity is dedicated to building just and inclusive schools, workplaces, and communities through awareness, education, and advocacy. The nonprofit organization was founded in 1948 as the National Conference of Christians and Jews. Today the programs, services, and initiatives of the American Conference on Diversity are among the most important work focused on creating a more inclusive society. It is the unfinished business of living in a highly diverse nation: educating and empowering our next generation of leaders, enhancing our workplaces, and helping to create inclusive communities. Visit www.AmericanConferenceonDiversity.org to learn more.
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