Sherri and Butch posing on each side of Ruth Moss holding award

Photos by Bob Studzinski

On Monday, December 5 the Free Press and Democratic Socialists of Central Ohio joined with the community to honor local activists at the annual awards event. The event was held at the HUB CDC, a community center and small business incubator. During the beginning of the evening, there was usic by Greg Kilcup and Ewan Todd, as people gathered and had some light refreshments.  

Free Press Editor Bob Fitrakis welcomed the crowd and President of the Board Pete Johnson was master of ceremonies. Asad Shabazz, owner of the HUB, talked to the audience about the mission of the HUB and upucoming events.

The ceremony started off with the Bill Moss Award for Outstanding African-American Activists. Named for legendary School Board member and local activist Bill Moss, the award was presented by Ruth Moss to Sherri and Butch Hamilton of Black Central. Next, Simone Morgen of the Democratic Sociaists of Central Ohio presented the Eugene V. Debs Award for Political and Educational Advocacy to Michael Vinson.

Jonathan Beard, Free Press Publisher, presented the Free Press Community Volunteer Award to  Calvin Hairston and Board Vice President Connie Gadell Newton presented the Free Press "Libby" Award for Community Activism to both Carolyn Harding and Greg Pace of the Columbus Community Bill of Rights.

Each awardee spoke about their work and how people could get involved in their causes. Calvin Hairston played the "Lift Every Voice and Sing" the black national anthem and an inspiring speech.

The Free Press thanks all the people who helped put the event together: Tim Chavez, Sandy Bolzenius, Gregory Gross, Greg Kilcup, Ewan Todd, Asad Shabazz, Pete Johnson, and Crystal O'Donovan. Bob Studzinski and Tekla Lewin took photos.