Gregory J. Vincent, vice president for diversity and community engagement at The University of Texas at Austin, will receive an honorary Prairie View Interscholastic League Coaches Association (PVILCA) Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding work in helping to preserve the history of the organization and its members.
Vincent was instrumental in working with the PVILCA's board of directors to secure a location to house the organization's memorabilia. Since 2008 a collection of framed black and white pictures, articles of clothing, trophies, and old newspaper articles have been on display on the second floor of the Community Engagement Center at 1009 E. 11th Street, a part of the university's Division of Diversity and Community Engagement.
Board Chairman Robert Brown says that Vincent's commitment to foster a university partnership with the PVILCA is significant because it means "the history and the culture of the PVIL will last a little longer."
The PVILCA is a group of former African American coaches and athletes that attended Texas' segregated high schools, which were not allowed to compete in the University Interscholastic League (UIL) until 1970. The UIL was created by the University of Texas in 1909 to provide contest opportunities in athletics, music and academics for Texas high schools. The PVIL came into existence in 1920 to mirror the UIL, but for the African American high schools. The organization's board has been successful in ensuring that their athletic records including the African American state championship competitions are integrated into the UIL. The group continues to educate the public, especially high school students about the organization's history, and recognizes and honors former participants annually.
At the PVILCA 32nd Annual Banquet in Fort Worth on July 23 Vincent will also receive an honorary lifetime membership, and his picture and name will be added to the group's "Hall of Fame" exhibit wall.
Brown said, "Dr. Vincent has been able to promote the PVIL exhibit to the community and that has been great, not only for the University of Texas and the UIL, but the PVIL."