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Dr. Cornel West, professor of African American Studies at Harvard University, will be the featured speaker for the 10th anniversary celebration for the Greensboro Education and Development Council.

The event will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Embassy Suites Hotel.

Dr. John Hope Franklin, professor emeritus at Duke University, will become the first recipient of the Kenneth T. Alston Lifetime Achievement Award.Alston was the founder of the Greensboro Education and Development Council.

The event is open to the public; tickets are $35.

For information on tickets, group rates and sponsorship levels, call the Greensboro Education and Development Council at 271-8124.

The council is a nonprofit United Way member agency that began as the outgrowth of concerns about the capacity of grass roots programs to sustain themselves and to provide quality programming.

Another concern was the city's capacity to continually generate minorities prepared to assume a variety of leadership roles in the community.

Incorporated in 1988, the agency has three main programs: The flagship program of the agency is the Challenge Greensboro Leadership Development program. The purpose of Challenge Greensboro is to increase the number of minorities with leadership skills who want to have input into decision-making processes that affect the greater Greensboro community in general and the black and other minority communities in particular.

The Afterschool and Enrichment Academies operate in eight public and assisted housing communities providing tutoring and homework assistance to children ages 5 to 14.

A male mentoring program for youths ages 10 to 18. The program, ``Man-To-Man,' is designed to improve the the chances for at-risk males by establishing a mentor relationship and various programs starting at before adolescence and lasting until the end of high school.

West has been described as one of America's most vital and eloquent intellectuals. Influenced by traditions as diverse as the Baptist Church, American transcendentalism, the Black Panthers, and European philosophy, he confronts in his work the ``monumental eclipse of hope and the unprecedented collapse of meaning' in America.

In books such as ``Race Matters,' ``Restoring Hope,' ``Jews and Blacks: Let the Healing Begin,' and his latest, ``The War Against Parents,' he teaches how the growing divisions in society foster the despair and distrust that undermine the democratic process.

Franklin, the James B. Duke Professor of History Emeritus at Duke University, has been a preeminent scholar of Southern history for more than 40 years and has been called ``a founding father of African American history.'

Franklin's numerous publications include ``The Emancipation Proclamation,' ``The Militant South,' ``The Free Negro in North Carolina.' Perhaps his best-known book is ``From Slavery to Freedom, A Travelers in the Antebellum North,' now in its seventh edition.

He has served on many national commissions and delegations and has served on the President's Advisory Commission on Ambassadorial Appointments.

Franklin serves as chairman of the Advisory Board for One America: The President's Initiative on Race.


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