The Austin chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) awarded Gregory J. Vincent, vice president for the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin, with its highest honor, the DeWitty/Overton Freedom Award.
The award was presented by Austin NAACP President Nelson Linder at the group’s 46th Annual DeWitty/Overton Freedom Fund Banquet on Dec. 10 at the Sheraton Austin.
“Dr. Gregory Vincent has been in the trenches since arriving in Austin and has given of himself to raise awareness and educate the community on the importance of diversity and inclusion. Selecting him as the DeWitty/Overton recipient this year is our way of acknowledging his value and unselfish contribution to causes that affect people not just here in Austin but around the world,” Linder said.
Vincent joined The University of Texas at Austin in 2005 as the vice provost for inclusion and cross-cultural effectiveness. In 2006, he was promoted to his current position. He also serves as a professor in the School of Law and the College of Education.
Vincent has championed a number of local causes, and most recently he has been one of the primary advocates for the African American Studies Cultural Center on East 12th Street. In 2009 the Austin NAACP selected Vincent for one of its annual Community Service Awards.
“It was a humbling experience to be honored with the DeWitty/Overton Freedom Award,” Vincent said. “Arthur B. DeWitty and Volma Overton played significant roles in the Austin civil rights movement and were instrumental in the success of the NAACP chapter. Both men are local heroes, honored by many during their lifetimes.”
In addition to presenting the Dewitty/Overton Award to Vincent, the Austin NAACP also conferred the following awards during the banquet:
- Christopher V. Davis, Austin Police Department Captain Louie White Award
- Lawrence L. Davis, Austin Police Department Captain Louie White Award
- Jeffrey K. Richards Community Service Award
- Steve Miller Community Service Award (Bastrop)
- Dereck L. Williams, Travis County Constable Community Service Award
- Gregory L. Smith Community Service Award
- Ethel B. Mitchell Community Service Award
- LaTonya J. Pegues Community Service Award
- Nelda Spears, Travis County Tax Assessor Outstanding Public Service Assessor/Collector
- Polly Street NAACP Lifetime Achievement Award