The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Commission for Blacks

Our Events

Multicultural Welcome Reception

August 28, 2014

Jamesia Terry, Secretary of the UT Chapter of the NAACP

The Multicultural Welcome Reception was a wonderful success! We had just around 90 attendees and the evening was full of meaningful contributions from our students, faculty, and staff.

See photos here

20th Anniversary of the African American Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame induction ceremonyInductee: Dr. Marva Rudolph
Saturday, October 11, 2014
9:30 AM reception, 10:00 AM Ceremony
Black Cultural Center

The African American Hall of Fame Award began in 1994 to recognize African Americans who have made profound contributions to African Americans at the University of Tennessee. The award is intended to acknowledge those who are among the “firsts” at UT and have made a significant impact. Dr. Rudolph will be honored for her decades of distinguished service, leadership and advocacy for a diverse and inclusive campus. She worked in the areas of diversity, inclusion and human rights for over thirty years, and she left a lasting legacy at the University of Tennessee.

Trailblazer Series

Speaker: Theotis Robinson
October 22, 2014
11:30 a.m
Hodges Library Auditorium

Trailblazer Series

Speaker: Rita Geier
November 7, 2014
12:30 p.m
Hodges Library Auditorium

Retention of African Americans in Knoxville Initiative Workshop

Retention of African Americans in Knoxville Initiative Workshop

November 8, 2014
Black Cultural Center
8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m

One of the commissions’ long-term goals is to affect the retention of talented African American professionals in the Knoxville area. In accordance with that goal, we hosted a panel luncheon in November 2013 where Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero, Knoxville Area Urban League President Phyllis Nichols, UT Vice Chancellor for Diversity Rickey Hall, and Community Development Leader Buzz Goss discussed the many aspects of this goal and laid the groundwork to develop thoughtful solutions. You may view this panel discussion at

To continue this important work, we will host a half-day workshop on November 8, 2014, where local Knoxville constituencies, such as African American entrepreneurs and leaders, local city employees, and University of Tennessee employees and alumni, collaboratively brainstorm and develop strategic tactics that address specific barriers to the retention of young African American professionals in Knoxville.

From this half-day workshop, we aim to consolidate and formalize the strategic tactics presented by local community members into a multiyear strategic plan for the retention of young African American professionals in Knoxville to be executed by the Commission for Blacks and the Office for the Vice Chancellor for Diversity in partnership with local government and civic entities.

Black Issues Conference

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Trailblazer Series

Speaker: Mark Dean
February 26, 2015
12:30 a.m
Hodges Library Auditorium

2015 Inaugural BFSA Symposium

March 20, 2015

Trailblazer Series

Speaker: Valisia LeKae
March 26, 2015
12:30 a.m
Hodges Library Auditorium



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Knoxville, Tennessee 37996 | 865-974-1000
The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System