Sullivan to receive Notre Dame Award
By KYLE ANDREWS
A campus ceremony today will honor Reverend Leon Sullivan with the 1999 Notre Dame Award for international humanitarian service. Pastor emeritus of the Zion Baptist Church in Philadelphia, Sullivan is honored for his leadership in civil rights.
Sullivan has been active in civil rights movements in both New York and Philadelphia, organizing boycotts, programs and writing codes of conduct for U.S. businesses. His involvement in South Africa's anti-apartheid struggle led him to write the Sullivan Principles in 1977, which for 10 years served as a code of conduct for U.S. companies that did business in South Africa.
"Leon Sullivan's struggle against racial prejudice and economic injustice has been lifelong, exemplary and inspiring," said University president Father Edward Malloy in a statement announcing the award. "In honoring his life and work, we hope to recommit ourselves to the same struggle."
Presently, Sullivan is president of the International Foundation for Education and Self-Help, a group that aims to encourage democracy and bring skilled workers to developing countries.
Born Oct. 16, 1922, in West Virginia, Sullivan went to West Virginia State College in 1939 on a basketball and football scholarship. After he lost the scholarship because of a foot injury, he worked his way through school, graduating in 1943.
Later, he moved to New York, and served as assistant minister in the Abysinnian Baptist Church while attending Union Theological Seminary. While receiving a master's degree from Columbia University, he participated in the civil rights movement starting in the city.
He left New York to become pastor of Philadel-phia's Zion Baptist Church in 1950. There he became an integral figure in the civil rights movement, organizing boycotts against discriminating companies and starting the Opportunities Industrialization Centers, a training program that has now grown internationally. In 1971, Sullivan became the first African American to join the General Motors board.
The award will be given at 7:30 p.m. tonight in the Jordan Auditorium of the College of Business Administration.
All News Stories for Wednesday, November 3, 1999