WAVERLY — Gloria Kirkland-Holmes, a University of Northern Iowa associate professor of early childhood education, will receive Wartburg College’s annual Graven Award on March 13.
She will accept the award and deliver her address, “Keep Your Dream Alive Through Prayer and Positive Guidance,” during the 11:30 a.m. ceremony in Wartburg Chapel. The public is invited. The ceremony will include music by Reatha Phillips, gospel singer and minister of music at Waterloo’s Antioch Baptist Church, and the Wartburg Castle Singers under the direction of Nikki Toliver.
The Graven Award, now in its 30th year, honors one “whose life is nurtured and guided by a strong sense of Christian calling and who is making a significant contribution to community, church and society.” It is named for Judge Henry N. and Helen T. Graven of Greene, whose lives reflected those same commitments.
She is the founder of the University of Northern Iowa’s Conference on African-American Children and Families, now in its seventh year. The event, which is designed for educators, social workers, business leaders and students, features culturally relevant speakers, workshops and open conversations in an effort to promote a better understanding of culture, ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status and the needs of African-American families.
Diane Levy Jacobson, a Luther Seminary professor emerita of the Old Testament, received Wartburg College’s Graven Award in 2017, and Coach Bruce Weber, men’s basketball coach at Kansas State University, won the award in 2016.