Celebration of Black Excellence

  • This event is an opportunity for us to reflect on this past year and celebrate our accomplishments. 
  • The RSVP deadline will be Friday, March 29th.  Faculty members are allotted a maximum of 2 e-tickets (one for you and a guest).
  • Note: Physical tickets will not be handed out this year.
  • We look forward to celebrating the Black Excellence in our community!

Black Excellence Awards

Awards are a fundamental part of our celebration! BFA is proud to highlight those faculty who go above and beyond in each of the areas below. Faculty may nominate others and self-nominations are also welcome.  Department heads may also submit nominations.  Faculty may be nominated for any or all of the four categories. Nominations from The United Black Student Association (UBSA) and the Black Graduate and Professional Student Association (BGPSA) will also be considered. Please include information about your accomplishments between last year’s celebration and this year’s celebration. 

Details for each award are included below with a list of potential sources of evidence. These sources of evidence are not required, but are included as examples that may strengthen nominations.

Huduma (Service) Award

  • Description of service activities to program, department, college, university, and/or community
  • Letter from a committee chair highlighting contributions

Utafiti (Research) Award

  • Evidence of scholarly and/or creative achievement (e.g., papers, conference proceedings, presentations, grand submissions and awards, books, other publications, media, etc.)

Ushauri (Mentoring) Award

  • List of student mentees
  • Description of activities with students
  • Statement(s) from students demonstrating impact (maximum of 3)

Kufundisha (Teaching) Award

  • Teaching evaluation data
  • Description of innovation in teaching, new course development, professional development leading to implementation in courses, and/or any other activities related to teaching

Mwandani (Ally) Award

The Black Faculty Association has established the “Mwandani (Ally) Award” to recognize a person outside of our organization that has been influential in the development of Black Faculty. Please nominate someone, who is not a member of BFA, that you feel has been influential in your development as a faculty member or the development of the organization. To nominate an ally, write a statement as to how the nominee has worked with you or the organization to further your professional goals.

Dr. Terry Kershaw Social Justice and Legacy Award

The Terry Kershaw Award recognizes a University of Cincinnati faculty member that has demonstrated the ability to incorporate diversity in the achievement of their professional goals. Faculty at all levels will be considered. Nominate a faculty member in your college that you feel embodies the merits of this award. To nominate a faculty member for this award please submit a CV of the nominee and a statement of the college’s diversity goals and most importantly how the nominee have worked with a diverse group of faculty and students to achieve their teaching and/or research goals.

Selection Criteria:

  • Strength of the link between the incorporation of diversity with the success of the faculty member
  • Strength of the nominee’s teaching and/or scholarship
  • Strength of college’s diversity goals

2018-19 Award Winners


  • Utafiti (Research): Dr. Derrick R. Brooms
  • Ushauri (Mentorship): Dr. Christina A. Campbell
  • Kunfundisha (Teaching): Dr. Sandra L. Browning


  • Utafiti (Research): Dr. Littisha Bates
  • Ushauri (Mentorship): Dr. Bridgette Peteet
  • Huduma (Service): Dr. Littisha Bates

Ubora/Faculty Member of the Year

  • Renee Seward

Mwandani (Ally)

  • Dr. Suzanne Masterson

Dr. Terry Kershaw Legacy Award

  • Dr. Whitney Gaskins

Maendeleo (promotion)

  • Dr. Guy-Lucien Whembolua (Associate Professor with Tenure)
  • Dr. Bridgette Peteet (Associate Professor with Tenure)
  • Dr. Dana Harley (Associate Professor with Tenure)

Other Recognitions

  • Dean Verna L. Williams on her promotion to Dean and other outstanding achievements.
  • Renee Seward received a special recognition and award on behalf of the Provost’s Office.

Photo Gallery- COBE 2019

COBE 2019 attendees at table
COBE 2019 cakes on table
COBE 2019 winners with awards
COBE 2019 attendees with award
two COBE 2019 attendees laughing
COBE 2019 winners with director James Mack
COBE 2019 attendees at podium receiving award
two COBE 2019 attendees dancing
COBE 2019 winners