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Wade H. McCree, Jr. Luncheon for Social Justice

February 7 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Join us for our Annual Wade H. McCree, Jr. Luncheon for Social Justice with a very special Keynote Speaker who will speak not only at the luncheon, but at a follow-on discussion on Thursday, February 8th (See Courageous Conversations, Part 2) from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.


KEYNOTE SPEAKER:  Professor Charles Dew

AWARD WINNER:  Stephani LaBelle

AWARD INFORMATION:   The Wade H. McCree, Jr. Award for the Advancement of Social Justice honors individuals or organizations who have made significant contributions to the advancement of social justice. These contributions may include advancing social justice in areas involving poverty, promoting economic or educational opportunity, or fighting discrimination involving race, gender, ethnicity, national origin, religion, or economic status. The recipient may be selected from any field of endeavor including law, social service, community organization, volunteer activities, journalism, academics or the like. WadeHMcCreeWade Hampton McCree, Jr. was born in Des Moines, Iowa. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree at Fisk University and his law degree at Harvard Law School, where he finished twelfth in his class. He began his legal career at the Detroit firm of Bledsoe and Taylor in 1948. In 1952, he was appointed by Governor G. Mennen Williams to the Workmen’s Compensation Commission, where he served until 1954, when Governor Williams appointed him to the Wayne County Circuit Court. Judge McCree was then appointed by President John F. Kennedy to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan in 1961, and by President Lyndon B. Johnson to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 1966. Judge McCree resigned from the Sixth Circuit in March 1977 to accept appointment by President Jimmy Carter as Solicitor General of the United States. Wade McCree served as Solicitor General until June 1981, when he was appointed the Lewis M. Simes Professor of Law at the University of Michigan, where he taught until his death. While a member of the University of Michigan Law School faculty, Professor McCree was appointed by the United States Supreme Court to hear three cases as a Special Master. Judge McCree cared deeply about education. A founder of the Higher Education Opportunities Committee at Wayne State University and a founding trustee of Friends School in Detroit, he was a Trustee at Fisk University and a member of the Visiting School Committees of Harvard Law School and Mercer University Law School. He also served as an Overseer of Harvard College and the University of Pennsylvania Law School and on the Visiting Committees of the Law Schools at Wayne State University, the University of Chicago, Case Western Reserve University and the University of Miami. Judge McCree’s service to the legal profession and the community included active membership on more than 50 committees, councils and boards. He also was a Life Member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and served on the Board of the Detroit Round Table of the National Conference of Christians and Jews, as well as on the boards of numerous charitable and cultural organizations. The Chapter’s McCree Award for the Advancement of Social Justice is nationally acknowledged as one of the most prestigious awards in recognition of contribution to the community. Past Recipients of the Wade Hampton McCree Jr. Award for the Advancement of Social Justice:

1990 George W. Crockett & Dennis W. Archer

1991 Ernest Goodman

1992 Mildred Jeffrey

1995 Damon J. Keith

1996 George W. Romney

1997 Fr. William Cunningham

1998 William G. Milliken

1999 Maryann Mahaffey

2001 Alternatives for Girls

2002 Saul A. Green

2003 Eleanor M. Josaitis

2004 Friends School of Detroit

2005 Eugene Driker

2006 Freedom House

2007 Father Norman P. Thomas

2008 Jack Kresnak

2009 The “Neal Legal Team”

2010 Mary Sue Coleman

2011 Kathleen Straus

2012 Martin I. Reisig

2013 Florise Neville-Ewell & PBJ Outreach

2014 Dr. Daniel H. Krichbaum

2015 John Van Camp

2016 Former United States Senator Carl Levin 2

2017 Mark Davidoff

2018 Faith Fowler

2019 Kary L. Moss

2020 Hon. Avern Cohn

2021 Legal Aid Defender Association, Inc.

2022 Erica Peresman

2023 Amanda Alexander

2024 Stephani LaBelle

Charles B. Dew is Ephraim Williams Professor of American History, Emeritus, at Williams College. A native of St. Petersburg, Florida, he attended North Ward Elementary School and Mirror Lake Junior High School before graduating magna cum laude from Woodberry Forest School in Virginia in 1954 and summa cum laude with Honors in History from Williams College in 1958; he received his Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University, where he studied under C. Vann Woodward, in 1964. He taught at Wayne State University, Louisiana State University, the University of Missouri-Columbia, and the University of Virginia before returning to teach at Williams in 1977. Professor Dew retired in 2020 following forty-three years as a member of the Williams faculty. His teaching there focused on the American South, the era of the Civil War and Reconstruction, and the institution of slavery. His most recent book is The Making of a Racist: A Southerner Reflects on Family, History, and the Slave Trade. Earlier scholarship includes: Bond of Iron: Master and Slave at Buffalo Forge; Apostles of Disunion: Southern Secession Commissioners and the Causes of the Civil War; and Ironmaker to the Confederacy: Joseph R. Anderson and the Tredegar Ironworks. Ironmaker to the Confederacy and Apostles of Disunion both received the Fletcher Pratt Award, given by the Civil War Roundtable of New York for the best non-fiction book on the Civil War in its year of publication; Bond of Iron received the 1995 Elliot Rudwick Prize from the Organization of American Historians for the best book on the experience of racial and ethnic minorities in the United States and was also named a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times.



February 7
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Detroit Athletic Club
241 Madison St
Detroit, MI 48226
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