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Martin to chair Amos-Frazier award committee
8/28/2013 2:32:26 PM

Montez C. Martin, Jr.

Montez C. Martin, Jr., chairman of the Marjorie Amos-Frazier Pacesetter Award Selection Committee 2013, today announced plans for the award’s third annual presentation at the Blue Jamboree, a major rally featuring national, state and regional Democratic Party officials set for October 26 at the Jenkins Institute in North Charleston. West Ashley Democrats, an affiliate of the Charleston County Democratic Party, sponsors the award and the Blue Jamboree, an event that is open to the public. 

The award is named in honor of the late Marjorie Amos-Frazier, the first woman elected to Charleston County Council in 1974 and the first woman, African-American and non-legislator elected to the South Carolina Public Service Commission in 1980. West Ashley Democrats established the award shortly after Ms. Amos-Frazier passing on June 23, 2010. Reacting to Amos-Frazier’s passing, Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr. called her “A towering force in the Charleston Community.” 

US Congressman James Clyburn stated: “Her legacy is great and her influence lives on in those of us who benefited from her tutelage.” 

According to Martin, the award selection committee is composed mostly of persons who had close ties to Amos-Frazier. “She was my mentor and advisor during my early days as a real estate executive and as the newly appointed CEO at the Charleston County Housing and Redevelopment Authority,” Martin said. “I am confident that our committee will select a recipient who reflects Marjorie’s legacy of dedicated public service.” 

The selection committee also includes: The Honorable Mignon Clyburn, Acting Chairwoman, Federal Communications Commission, and 2011 Amos-Frazier award recipient; Thomasina Smith-Cook, an Amos-Frazier award donor; Vertelle Kenion, CEO and Supreme Lady, Knights of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary, and daughter of Amos-Frazier; Kaye Lingle Koonce, Esq., First Vice-Chair, South Carolina Democratic Party, and immediate past chair of the Amos-Frazier award committee; Dr. David E. Rivers, Associate Professor and Director of Public Information and Community Outreach, Medical University of South Carolina; Fred R. Sheheen, Former Commissioner, SC Higher Education Commission, and Senior Fellow, Institute For Public Service and Policy Research, University of South Carolina; Tessa Spencer, Co-Anchor, “Good Morning Charleston” and “Lowcountry LIVE,” WCIV TV-4, and radio personality, STAR 99.7/Apex Broadcasting; The Honorable McKinley Washington, Jr., Former South Carolina Senator, and retired minister Edisto Presbyterian Church. 

The committee will meet on Monday, September 9, at the Avery Research Center on the College of Charleston’s campus, to decide the 2013 award recipient based on their lasting civic and humanitarian contributions without regard to political affiliation. A vote by Charleston County Council on June 16, 2011, established a permanent display of the Amos-Frazier award on the rotunda just outside Council Chambers at the Lonnie Hamilton III Public Service Building. 

Amos-Frazier award donors include: Smith-Cook; Colleen Condon, Charleston County Councilwoman; Richard Fields, Attorney and retired judge; Don and Carol Fowler, former respective chairs, Democratic National Committee and South Carolina Democratic Party; David Mack III, State Representative; Ruth Jordan, Former Charleston County School Board Chair; Phil Noble, President, South Carolina New Democrats; and Vic Rawl, Charleston County Councilman. 

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