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Alpha Kappa Alpha's President to be Presented Prestigious Award

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s international president, Carolyn House Stewart, will receive the prestigious Sadie T.M. Alexander Award from the National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA) during a luncheon on March 9.

Carolyn House Stewart
Carolyn House Stewart


Carolyn House Stewart to receive Sadie T.M. Alexander Award for advocacy/leadership

Chicago, Illinois - February 27, 2013- In recognition of her advocacy on behalf of diverse communities, her legal acumen and her stellar leadership, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s international president, Carolyn House Stewart, will receive the prestigious Sadie T.M. Alexander Award from the National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA). The award will be presented on March 9 at a luncheon to be held during the Association’s 45th Annual National Convention in Atlanta, Georgia.  Over 1,000 members are expected to attend.  

Mrs. Stewart is being hailed for the impact she’s made as leader of the world’s oldest and largest Sorority devoted to service. The first lawyer to serve as AKA’s international president in its 105-year history, she is also being saluted for launching initiatives aimed at promoting human rights and equality.

The award is named in honor of pioneer Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander, the first African-American woman to receive a degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and to be admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar.  As a passionate defender of human and civil rights, she served in many leadership positions including on Philadelphia’s Commission on Human Relations.  One of Alexander’s most extraordinary national achievements came in 1947 when President Harry Truman appointed her to the President’s Committee on Civil Rights, which was devoted to strengthening and protecting civil rights of Americans.  She helped lay the foundation for a national civil rights policy by co-authoring the Commission’s report, “To Secure These Rights.”

Kendra Brown, National Chair of NBLSA, and a graduate of Vermont Law School currently pursuing an L.L.M. at George Washington School of Law, noted that, like Alexander, Attorney Stewart boasts a long record of achievement as an attorney, advocate, leader, activist and humanitarian. She added that Stewart’s integrity, values, and principles and profession are inspirational to the members of NBLSA.

Ebony Foster, NBLSA’s National Director of Alumni Affairs, who is graduating from Widener University School of Law this year, stated that Attorney Stewart has a proven legacy of advocating for others. This, coupled with her charisma, passion and dogged pursuit of justice make her an ideal candidate for the award.

Under Attorney Stewart’s leadership, and inspired by the theme “Global Leadership Through Timeless Service,” members of the Sorority have logged hundreds of thousands of volunteer hours serving in communities all over the globe where it has chapters. Inspired by her example, the Sorority has focused on improving the lives of young girls as embodied in the signature program:  Emerging Young Leaders.  

As an attorney concerned about justice and human rights, she has been proactive in leading the Sorority to tackle issues that impact diverse communities. Among them are human trafficking and voter disenfranchisement. The Sorority has also generated awareness about health initiatives and health through partnerships with major health advocacy agencies. On behalf of the Sorority, she has spoken out against the Florida Stand Your Ground Law, dispatched teams to fight voter ID laws, and lashed out against atrocities that impact those being denied rights in all points of the world, particularly women.

Attorney Stewart’s rise to Alpha Kappa Alpha’s chief leadership position caps a record of commitment and service to the Sorority that began when she was initiated at the University of South Florida in 1972. She stair stepped her way up the leadership ladder by serving in a variety of roles. In 2006, she was elected first vice president, positioning her to ascend to the position of international president in 2010.  In this role, she presides over an organization that boasts 265,000 members and has 972 chapters all over the world. She will serve until July 2014.

Professionally, Attorney Stewart is currently of counsel in the law firm of Macfarlane Ferguson & McMullen, one of Florida’s oldest law firms; she has been with the firm since 1994. She handles cases in the firm’s civil litigation, casualty and labor law sections.

She earned a Juris Doctor from the University of South Carolina Law Center and holds a Bachelor of Arts in History and Social Science Education from the University of South Florida.

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About the National Black Law Students Association

The National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA) is a national organization formed to articulate and promote the needs and goals of black law students to effectuate change in the legal community.  Through various forms of community service, social action and programming, NBLSA encourages the development of talented and social conscious lawyers of tomorrow.  As the largest student run organization in the United States with nearly 6,000 members, NBLSA is comprised of chapters or affiliates in six different countries including The Bahamas, Nigeria, and South Africa.  NBLSA has over 200 chapters, including at Georgetown University Law Center, Harvard Law School and the University Pennsylvania Law School.  Each year, NBLSA holds an annual convention to engage legal activism and prepare new generations of lawyers.

Contact: Melody M. McDowell -773-660-2001 - Office
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Source:Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority
Location:Chicago - Illinois - United States
Industry:Legal, Non-profit
Tags:Legal Award, Women, Service, African American
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