"Young, Gifted and Black: Honoring our Responsibility
to Underserved Communities"
Friday, February 19, 2010
Cocktail hour 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Dinner and Awards 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.
John J. Oliver, Jr., Esq.
Publisher & CEO, Afro-American newspapers
Awards to be presented include:
Alumnus of the Year
Judge Andre Davis ’78
Circuit Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
Practitioner of the Year
Franklin M. Lee ’80
Partner, Tydings & Rosenberg LLP
Firm of the Year
BLSA Impact Award
A.J. Bellido de Luna
Managing Director, Clinical Law Program
Director of Student Recruiting, University of Maryland School of Law
Professor of the Year
SMC Campus Center Ballroom
621 W. Lombard Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
Alumni - $45
Faculty - $40
Students - $35
John J. Oliver, Jr., Esq., a national leader in the publishing industry and innovator known for his vital role in promoting discourse within the African-American community, will serve as this year's distinguished guest and keynote speaker at the 35th Annual Black Law Student Association Scholarship and Awards Banquet on Feb. 19.
As Publisher and CEO of the Afro-American newspapers, Oliver has transformed the Afro-American's print publications into a digital format, making the Afro-American the first black-oriented publication and one of a few of its kind to be featured online. He is the fourth-generation in his family to preside over the newspapers, which were founded in 1892 by John H. Murphy, Sr., and have played a vital role in the civil rights movement. In 1999, Oliver was elected to serve two terms as president of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), a 69-year-old federation of more than 200 African-American community newspapers nationwide.
Prior to joining Afro-American newspapers in 1982, he spent a decade practicing corporate law as a staff lawyer for the General Electric Corporation in Rockville and prior, a corporate lawyer working for the firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, the same firm with partner John W. Davis, who was well known for his final appearance before the Supreme Court defending a companion case to Brown v. Board of Education. He is the former Chairman of the Maryland Higher Education Commission and has served as a member of the Board of Directors for First Mariner Bank as well as on diversity oversight committees for Coors and Texaco corporations.
The University of Maryland chapter of the BLSA, one of the first and one of the largest in the nation, is active in recruiting and assisting African-American and other minority law students with their studies while in law school and preparing them for admission to and practice in the bar. The Maryland chapter is a vital, integral part of the local community and bar, sponsoring and/or participating in many community-oriented activities such as the BLSA-Booker T. Washington Middle School Tutorial Program, career day lectures on law as a career for young people, providing holiday baskets of food for needy members of the community and conducting clothing drives for women and children at local shelters for battered women.