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Old Dominion University President Roseann Runte will be honored next month with two prestigious awards. On April 5, she will receive the 42nd Annual Humanitarian Award from the National Conference for Community and Justice (NCCJ), and the following day will be presented the YWCA Woman of Distinction Award. Both award programs will be at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott.

According to the criteria for the Humanitarian Award, honorees must be "respected throughout the community with work and/or activities that have facilitated understanding among people of different religious faiths, ethnic groups and racial groups. People are chosen for helpful contributions toward better understanding among all people, either through association with NCCJ or its goals and ideals, by opposing bias, bigotry and racism through community efforts."

Further, recipients include those who have "made an identifiable creative achievement and/or a significant contribution toward the improvement of human relations, social welfare and justice, and the quality of life of the people in the Commonwealth of Virginia."

The YWCA award follows a similar set of precepts, only as specifically applied to work furthering the state of women in the community.

In her nomination letter to the YWCA award committee, Nancy A. Bagranoff, dean of ODU's College of Business and Public Administration, said, "Dr. Runte once explained to me that while she loved the opportunities she had as a faculty member to mentor and help many students individually, she sees her role as a university leader and administrator as one that lets her impact a much larger population."

Much of Runte's service is national and international, including several board positions and membership in the International Women's Forum and the Club of Rome. Her service also extends to board positions at the United Way, Urban League, Hampton Roads Partnership, Second Wind Dance Company, Dolphin Scholarship Foundation and Virginia Stage Company, as well as an honorary board position with the Virginia Symphony. She is a member of the Chamber of Commerce, the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, the Greater Norfolk Corporation and the Future of Hampton Roads.

Her many contributions in mentoring and the promotion of women and minorities include the mentorship of three American Council on Education Fellows from South Africa and one African American ACE Fellow, her work in the de Tocqueville Society and the creation and funding of a scholarship for female students from Afghanistan.

At Old Dominion, Runte approved the creation of a women's studies department, funded equity payments and approved a maternity/adoption leave policy. She speaks and contributes her time to many women's groups and service organizations.


This article was posted on: March 17, 2006

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Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.