(PRWEB) March 18, 2006 -- The National Youth Leadership Council will honor former Pennsylvania Senator Harris Wofford with the inaugural William James National Service Lifetime Achievement Award and former Maryland Lieutenant Governor Kathleen Kennedy Townsend with the Alec Dickson Servant Leader Award during a special reception at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Thursday, March 23, 6:30 p.m. The event is part of The 17th Annual National Service-Learning Conference.
“ The Moral Equivalent of War ”
Harris Wofford has been central to every major effort to advance civic service in the United States during the past five decades, including his early work in the civil rights movement with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the founding of the Peace Corps. More recently, he has played a key role in crafting and passing the trailblazing legislation that created AmeriCorps, the Learn
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and Serve America program, and the Corporation for National and Community Service. Following Wofford’s Senate tenure, President Clinton appointed him CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service, a role he filled from 1995 to 2001.
Wofford is the first recipient of the William James National Service Lifetime Achievement Award, which honors his dedication to promoting and performing national civic service. The award is named for philosopher and pacifist William James, whose 1906 speech at Stanford University described the conceptual foundation for nonmilitary service in the United States and was the forbearer of his essay “The Moral Equivalent of War” (1910), often cited as the origin of organized national service.
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend — the eldest child of Robert and Ethel Kennedy, and founder and director of Maryland Student Service Alliance — is a significant inheritor of and contributor to the legacy of national service. In Maryland, she led the fight that made it the first state to require community service for high school
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graduation. She also has served a the state’s first female lieutenant governor, and was deputy assistant attorney general of the United States.
The Alec Dickson Servant Leader Award is given annually to honor exemplary leaders who have inspired the service-learning field, positively affected the lives of young people and motivated others to take up the banner of service. It is named for British humanitarian Alec Dickson (1914-94) — founder of Community Service Volunteers and Voluntary Service Overseas — whose vision, innovation and commitment inspired many individuals to lead lives of service. Dickson was the honorary Board Chair of NYLC.
Press interested in attending this event should contact Kathy Bardins, National Youth Leadership Council, at (877) 541-9363. On-site (March 20-25), she can be reached at (763) 242-4406. More information about the conference can be found at www.nylc.org/conference
About the William James Award
The William James National Service Lifetime Achievement Award is presented in partnership with America’s Promise, Campus Compact, City Year, Corporation for National and Community Service, Hands On Network, Institute for Global Education
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and Service-Learning, National Service-Learning Partnership, Points of Light Foundation, State Farm® and Youth Service America.
About The National Service-Learning Conference
The National Service Learning-Conference is the largest gathering of youths and practitioners from the service-learning movement. In 2005, it drew nearly 2,900 participants from all 50 states and 41 other countries.
NYLC has been at the center of service-learning program and policy development since 1983. It annually convenes The National Service-Learning Conference, offers adult and youth trainings and develops service-learning resources. For more information, please visit www.nylc.org
Service-learning is a teaching method that enriches learning by engaging students in meaningful service to their schools and communities. It integrates service with established learning objectives, emphasizes critical thinking and problem-solving, and tackles real issues such as hunger, ecological concerns and diversity.