Civil rights and education leader Bertha Maxwell-Roddey, 82, will receive the 2012 Luminary Lifetime Achievement award from The Charlotte Post Foundation on Saturday.
Whatever Ive done in my lifetime, it was done because it was needed to be done. I wasnt seeking an award if someone feels that Im worthy of an award, I appreciate it, said Maxwell-Roddey, who lives in both Charlotte and Seneca, S.C.
The Post Best banquet will be Saturday at the Hilton Center City. The award recognizes efforts to help others obtain equal access and inclusion in influential institutions, according to the foundation.
A highlight of Maxwell-Roddeys education and civil rights career includes becoming principal in the 1960s of Albemarle Road Elementary School, which she then desegregated. As an educator at UNC Charlotte in the 1970s, Maxwell-Roddey developed the schools Africana Studies department and she also co-founded the Afro-American Cultural Center on that campus, she said.
Maxwell-Roddey earned a masters in education from UNC Greensboro and a doctorate in administration and curriculum development at Union Graduate School in Cincinnati, she said.
Before retiring a few years ago, Maxwell-Roddey taught at USC Lancaster. She said she stopped teaching after discovering a benign brain tumor. Maxwell-Roddey also survived breast cancer 25 years ago.
Dr. Roddeys exemplary record in education and community service makes her an ideal and deserving candidate for this prestigious award, said Gerald Johnson, chief executive of The Charlotte Post and president of The Charlotte Post Foundation, in a prepared statement.
Maxwell-Roddey received her undergraduate degree at Johnson C. Smith University, which honored her with its Arch of Triumph award in 2010. The Afro American Cultural Center grew into what is now the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, according to the foundation.
The banquet also will honor its Teacher of the Year, Shanna Rae of Billingsville Elementary School, and will honor scholarship recipients Porsha Tate of Olympic High and Destiny Planter of West Charlotte High.