CINCINNATI, OH:— Dr. Gary P. Zola, Executive Director of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives and Associate Professor of the American Jewish Experience at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, will receive The Bishop Herbert Thompson Jr. Distinguished Humanitarian Award at the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission’s annual awards event, CHRC & Cincinnati—Connecting Cultures and Communities. The dinner will be held on Wednesday, May 6, 2009 at the Hilton Netherland Plaza Hotel. The reception begins at 6:30 followed by dinner at 7:15 p.m. The cost is $75 per person.
The awards dinner is presented to honor “Champions for Connecting Cultures and Communities”. The award Zola will receive was created to honor the life and legacy of the late Bishop Herbert Thompson Jr.— the first African American elected to serve as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio. Bishop Thompson lived by the personal motto, "To reconcile, to liberate, to heal, to serve.” He labored to resolve racial injustice and worked to strengthen relationships among diverse groups.
Dr. Zola is the immediate past president of the Cincinnati Chapter of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition and has been a frequent speaker on issues of faith and freedom at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. Zola is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of the American Jewish Committee and the Jewish Community Relations Council, Cincinnati Chapters. In 2004, Zola served as the Chair of the national Commission for Commemorating the 350th Anniversary of American Jewish History, which was organized to help our nation mark the 350th anniversary of Jewish communal life in North America (1654-2004). A past president of the Greater Cincinnati Board of Rabbis, Zola is currently serving on the Academic Advisory Council of the national Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.
The Cincinnati Human Relations Commission serves as a catalyst to unify individuals and groups to improve human relations in the Greater Cincinnati area. CHRC helps our community overcome prejudice and discrimination, and builds mutual respect and understanding to become more harmonious and cohesive.
MEDIA: For more information or to obtain an interview with Dr. Zola, please contact Joyce Kamen at 513.543.8109.
The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, founded in 1947 by its namesake on the Cincinnati, Ohio, campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, is committed to preserving a documentary heritage of the religious, organizational, economic, cultural, personal, social and family life of American Jewry. The Marcus Center contains over 15,000 linear feet of archives, manuscripts, nearprint materials, photographs, audio and videotapes, microfilm, and genealogical materials.
Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's first institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu