Nominations are open for NHC Office of Diversity and Equity inaugural Equity Awards

Posted June 28, 2021 at 11:30 am     Category: Diversity & EquityNews Release

Awards ceremony to be held August 20 at The Harrelson Center

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – The New Hanover County Office of Diversity and Equity is accepting nominations for the first annual Equity Awards Gala, which will celebrate community members for efforts in expanding and elevating equity and diversity. Nominations are open until August 1, and the gala will be held August 20 at 6 p.m. at the Harrelson Center.

“The Equity Awards will honor individuals throughout New Hanover County who have dedicated their time, talents and energy to promoting equity across our community,” said New Hanover County Chief Diversity and Equity Officer Linda Thompson. “This is the first of an annual event our office will host to celebrate the work of diversity champions in our area and the progress they are helping our great community achieve.”

The Equity Awards Gala will also be an opportunity to update the community and highlight the work of the Office of Diversity and Equity throughout its first year of operation, which includes community programming, policy updates, training, and COVID-19 vaccination outreach.

Nominations for the first annual Equity Awards Gala can be submitted by clicking here, or at and nominations will close August 1. There are seven categories of awards:

  • Youth (12 to 18 years of age)
  • Nonprofit
  • Business
  • Health
  • Education
  • Faith based
  • Community

The Equity Awards are being presented in partnership with The Harrelson Center and will be hosted in the center’s new event venue, which officially opens in August.

“We are delighted to host this inaugural event that champions actions and attitudes toward a more inclusive and equitable community,” said Meade Van Pelt, executive director of The Harrelson Center. “The Harrelson Center is a model founded on collaboration and synergy and is reliant on respect for diversity.”

The Equity Awards Gala will be held on Friday, August 20 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Jo Ann Harrelson Center at 20 N. 4th Street in downtown Wilmington. Tickets for the gala are $25 and can be purchased online by clicking here or at

For more information about the Equity Awards Gala, contact the Office of Diversity and Equity at 910-798-7430 or


About the New Hanover County Office of Diversity and Equity
The New Hanover County Office of Diversity and Equity was established in June 2020 with a mission to promote an inclusive and fair work environment and build a culture and community where employees and residents are respected, valued and understood for their own identity. The office serves as a catalyst for change among underrepresented groups and ensures services, policies, and procedures within New Hanover County Government promote access, equity and inclusion. Beyond internal priorities for the office, staff members also engage in community outreach, furthering New Hanover County’s commitment to these shared values and promotion of diversity, inclusion, fairness, and respect county-wide.

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Communications and Outreach: 230 Government Center Drive, Suite 195 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7461 • Fax 910-798-7277
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