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President’s Awards for Diversity
Recipient Highlights

Contact: Kathy Johnson


Delicia Haynes



Photo of Lauretta Byars
Lauretta Byars







Photo of Dr. Doris Y. Wilkinson
Dr. Doris Y. Wilkinson




Photo of Don Witt
Don Witt















Photo of Joseph W. Kelly
Joseph W. Kelly




Photo of Joseph Lambert
Joseph Lambert


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 29, 2003) -- Delicia Haynes, student in the College of Medicine

  • Worked to increase the number of African Americans in the health professions by establishing the UK-MAPS (Minority Association of Pre-Health Students) chapter.
  • Reactivated and served as president of the UK chapter of the American Medical Student Association, during which time she oversaw numerous programs including “Boys and Girls Night Out,” where medical students gave monthly presentations on health issues to youth at a shelter.
  • Conducted research on tobacco use in African-American women, gender differences, and medical residency work hour reform.
  • Provided tutoring and conducted needs assessment at Bluegrass Aspendale Teen Center in Lexington.

Lauretta Byars, associate provost, UK Multicultural and Academic Affairs

  • Spearheaded UK’s 1998-1999 commemoration, “Fifty Years of UK African-American Legacy,” a celebration culminating in a university-wide convocation featuring South African leader Desmond Tutu.
  • Helped develop UK’s Inclusive Learning Community, that works to create an institutional environment supportive of diversity.
  • Helped develop the Curriculum Transformation Institute, which engaged faculty and teaching assistants from UK and Lexington Community College in working together to enhance their understanding and appreciation of diversity and using that enhanced knowledge to improve their instruction of large introductory courses.
  • Sought and received external funding to help operate such programs as Summer Excel, aimed at increasing and retaining the number of minority students in math and science areas, and Student Support Services, a program to help first-generation college students from low income backgrounds and/or with a documented disability.

Dr. Doris Y. Wilkinson, professor of sociology, University of Kentucky

  • One of the first African Americans to enroll at the University of Kentucky after the Supreme Court declared public school segregation illegal.
  • As a UK professor, designed the African American Studies and Research Program, the Carter G. Woodson Lecture Series, and the Black Women’s Conference.
  • Has a long and stellar record of professional and scholarly research and achievements. Has won the American Sociological Associations’ Dubois-Johnson Frazier Award, UK’s Great Teacher Award, a Ford Fellowship to Harvard, and UK’s Hall of Distinguished Alumni. Has served as president of three national professional organizations.
  • Mentors junior faculty and works to promote greater diversity among UK faculty.

Don Witt, director of Undergraduate Admission and University Registrar

  • When Offices of Undergraduate Admission and Registrar were combined in 2001, he expanded relationships with the Office of Multicultural Affairs to develop collaborative recruitment efforts, including having Admission staff personally call minority students to remind them of application and financial aid deadlines as well as information.
  • Helped establish a planning committee of Admission and Registrar and Multicultural and Academic Affairs personnel as well as representatives from colleges and support services on campus to plan recruitment of the fall 2003 class. (African-American student enrollment in the fall 2003 freshman class increased more than 30 percent over the previous year.)
  • Increased the number of multicultural staff members in the Office of Admission and Registrar.
  • Emphasizes policy of disseminating information that represents UK’s diverse community, making sure every group is treated with equal respect.

Lexington Community College

  • Has increased African-American student enrollment from 385 in 1997 to nearly 900 in 2002. Hispanic student population has grown by 64 percent, and international student enrollment has risen by 225 percent in the past five years.
  • Increased number of African-American faculty from six to 15 over the past five years as well as increasing the number of international faculty members.
  • LCC president and multicultural director are visiting churches as part of minority student recruitment.
  • Is the only community college in Kentucky with a full-time multicultural director whose primary focus is addressing diversity issues with faculty, staff and students, and has just hired an international coordinator to work with international students.

Joseph W. Kelly, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Columbia Gas of Kentucky

  • Helped the UK College of Education secure Columbia Gas as its first corporate sponsor with a scholarship commitment to the Teacher Opportunity Program designed to assist minority students interested in pursuing an alternative teacher certification program.
  • Provided funding for three tuition scholarships for promising first year minority candidates who declare a major in education.
  • Sponsored, through Columbia Gas, 13 scholarships for UK education students to study the Holocaust in Israel and Poland to learn more about social injustice through the organization March of Remembrance and Hope, and will sponsor the trip again this academic year.
  • To follow up on the trip, Columbia Gas and the UK Patterson School of Diplomacy are sponsoring “From the Holocaust to Healing the World: A Human Rights Symposium.”

Joseph Lambert, chief justice, Kentucky Supreme Court

  • Created and established the Kentucky Legal Education Opportunity (KLEO) Program, which provides 15 economically disadvantaged students, many of whom are minorities, with a $5,000 scholarship for each of their three years of law school. Each of Kentucky’s three law schools, including UK, has five KLEO scholars.
  • Secured funds from the Kentucky General Assembly to fund the KLEO program.
  • Invited the University of Kentucky to host the first Summer KLEO Institute, a nine-day session this past summer to introduce KLEO scholars to their first year of law school’s fields of study. UK has since been chosen to host next year’s institute.
  • Has been a leader and participated annually in the UK College of Law’s symposium for prospective minority applicants to the college.

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