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Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards Dinner 2014

The Tenth Annual Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards Dinner

TD Convention Center
Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Riley Institute at Furman presented the tenth annual Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards Dinner on Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at the TD Convention Center. Hosted by the Greenville Chamber and the Riley Institute at Furman in partnership with Upstate Chambers, the dinner honored businesses and individuals for their outstanding efforts in promoting diversity in the Upstate.

This year's special guest speaker was Ugandan-born Kiara Kabukuru. She and her family fled the country as political refugees when she was six and moved to Los Angeles, where at the age of seventeen she was discovered by a local photographer. Her rare mix of all-American beauty and exotic African allure have made her a successful model in the fashion industry. 

Kiara learned of the work of Momentum Bike clubs which provides mentoring services to at-risk youth encouraging healthy exercise while forging positive relationships. She became drawn to the good work of the clubs and decided to get on a bicycle for the first time since her accident in order to ride with these children. Since she first connected with Momentum Bike clubs in 2011, Kiara has made several trips to the Upstate to ride with the club’s youth, sharing her story of resiliency and hope. For Kiara' complete biography, click here.

Awards were presented to recognize three individuals and three organizations for their outstanding achievement in promoting diversity in the Upstate. Additionally, Honorable Mentions were awarded in the category of Calder D. Ehrmann Outstanding Individual, Outstanding High School Student, Outstanding Non-Profit Organization, and K-12 School: William “Bill” T. Wylie Valued Lives Award for School Excellence in Diversity

Award Winners:

Calder D. Ehrmann Outstanding Individual: Kinneil Coltman, Chief Diversity Officer for the Greenville Health System (award sponsored by Juan Johnson Consulting and Facilitation)

Outstanding High School StudentBrittany Gilliland, Brashier Middle College Charter High School 

Outstanding College StudentDarien Smith, Clemson University 

Outstanding Non-Profit OrganizationYear of Altruism (award sponsored by BMW Manufacturing Co.)

Outstanding BusinessBMW Manufacturing Co. 

Outstanding Contribution to International DiversityJanet Krupka, Director of Recruiting at Michelin North America 

Outstanding K-12 School: William “Bill” T. Wylie Valued Lives Award for School Excellence in DiversityBerea Middle School  (award sponsored by Denny's Corporation)

Honorable Mention:

Honorable Mention Calder D. Ehrmann Outstanding IndividualDavid Taylor, executive director of Momentum Bike Clubs

Honorable Mention Outstanding High School Student: Napoleon Langston, JL Mann High School

Honorable Mention Outstanding Non-Profit Organization: Upcountry History Museum

Honorable Mention Outstanding K-12 School: William “Bill” T. Wylie Valued Lives Award for School Excellence in Diversity :The Washington Center

Press Coverage:

Greenville Chamber Press ReleaseUpstateBizSC