FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
June 1, 2014
CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
Suffolk County Sheriff Steven W. Tompkins recently visited the Higginson/Lewis K–8 School in Roxbury to help celebrate the 60th anniversary of Brown vs. the Board of Education. Occurring in 1954, Brown vs. Board of Education is a landmark Supreme Court case that resulted in the abolition of legal segregation in public schools.
The event, which was attended by some of the school’s elementary students, faculty and members of the community, included a presentation of the history behind the court case and race relations at the time, in addition to a presentation of awards to community members.
Along with Sheriff Tompkins, the awards were presented by Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson; City Councilor Ayanna Pressley’s Chief of Staff Jessica Taubner; and Ronald Marlow, Assistant Secretary for Access and Opportunity for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Awardees Lena Reddick, Joy Salesman–Oliver and Joyce Cunha, were recognized for their “visionary leadership in public education."
Following the presentation, Sheriff Tompkins spoke about the event’s significance.
“I’m more than happy to take part in the recognition of people who fight for quality education and I am especially glad to see that the youth are learning about such a crucial time in our history,” said Sheriff Tompkins. “Education is an important part of leading a productive life and this historical moment caused a major shift in the way we think about and deal with one another. I, myself, have benefitted from being in an educational environment with a diverse group of people, so I’m glad that the young people here are receiving the opportunity to learn about the history behind ‘Brown vs. the Board of Education’ and why it is important. Education creates opportunities, and opportunities give options to people who would otherwise have none.”