NEW YORK -- Twelve artists, writers, and scholars, including Brandeis University professor Anita Hill and former Black Panther Party activist Kathleen Cleaver, were named yesterday as winners of $50,000 fellowships for work that improves race relations and illuminates civil rights issues.
The awards are funded by the Fletcher Foundation, an organization created by financier Alphonse Fletcher Jr.
In addition to Cleaver and Hill, recipients include writer Stanley Crouch; Arthur Miller, founder of the Dance Theater of Harlem; and painter Glenn Ligon.
The inaugural awards, which will be given annually, were announced a year after the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark Supreme Court decision that accelerated the civil rights movement and reshaped national policy and thought on racial issues.
At that anniversary, Fletcher announced that his foundation would distribute $50 million to people and organizations working to improve equality for black Americans.
Other recipients included Elizabeth Alexander, a professor of African-American studies at Yale University; Devon Carbado, a law professor at UCLA; Roland Fryer, a Harvard University fellow; Nina Jablonski, an anthropologist with the California Academy of Sciences.
Also recognized were Robert P. Moses, an educator in Cambridge, Mass.; Thomas Sugrue, a professor of history and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania; and Deborah Willis, an art professor at New York University.