27th annual Living Legends Award recipients announced

brown and black concrete floor
Photo by Gareth David on Unsplash

The Fort Worth Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Inc. Beta Tau Lambda in association with the Beta Tau Lambda Charitable Foundation will honor outstanding civic and community leaders at the 27th Annual Dr. Marion J. Brooks Living Legend Award Ceremony on Friday, June 18 at 6:30 p.m. at the Palmwood Event Center at 640 Taylor St., Suite 1300, Fort Worth.

The Dr. Marion J. Brooks Living Legend Award is presented to Tarrant County residents who have exemplified excellence in their chosen vocation and provided great service to the community, the organizations said in a news release.

This year’s honorees include: Pamela Dunlop Gates, Law and Community Service; Loraine Miller, Politics; and Donald R. Walker for Civic Service.

In addition to the Living Legend honorees, four Legends in the Making (40 and under) will also be honored. Legend in the Making Honorees include: Shay Dial Johnson, Business; Jarrett “Jay” Jackson, Politics; Tia Cole, Education; and Tracy R. Williams, Entrepreneurship.

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“After postponing our 2020 program due to an unprecedented global pandemic, we are extremely excited about the return of the Dr. Marion J. Brooks Living Legends Awards this year. On June 18th, a thankful community will gather to salute this year’s slate of Living Legends. Surrounded by family and friends, these Legends will receive their honors for their years of dedicated service to the citizens of Tarrant County.” said Jay Corzine, Beta Tau Lambda Chapter president.

To attend the 27th Annual Dr. Marion J. Brooks Living Legends Award Ceremony in-person please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/153255686885.

To virtually attend the Legends After Dark Experience please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/105701341558

Admission to the program is $10. Virtual attendance for Legends After Dark is between $18-$115. For more information about the two events please email: VP@FWALPHAS.ORG About the honorees:

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Living Legends

Pamela Dunlop Gates

With over 35 years in legal advocacy, Pamela Dunlop Gates has been both stellar in the courtroom and the community. Gates is the co-founder of the Tarrant County Black Women Lawyers Association and served as the first female president of the Fort Worth Tarrant County Minority leaders & Citizens Council.

Gates has provided great leadership to the community in her roles as a member of the Board of Directors for the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport Board, Airport Minority Advisory Council, the Fort Worth Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce and the Fort Worth Economic Development Corporation to name just a few.

Her extensive service through organizations such as The Links, Incorporated, Fort Worth (TX) Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Fort Worth Chapter and the Food Bank of Tarrant County have provided immense value to our community.

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Lorraine C. Miller

Both a North Texas native and icon, Lorraine Miller has dedicated her life to uplifting the people. During the Clinton Administration she served as deputy assistant to the President on Legislative Affairs. During her illustrious career Miller has served with three Democratic Speakers of the House, including the Tom Foley, Jim Wright and Nancy Pelosi.

Miller has also served as Director of Government Relations for the Federal Trade Commission and Bureau Chief of Consumer Information. In 2007, Miller became the first African American to serve as an official of the United States House of Representatives. With extensive service to the NAACP both at the local and national level, in 2013 Miller took the helm as Interim president and CEO of the National NAACP.

Donald R. Walker

This home-grown legend is a graduate of the historic I.M. Terrell High School. After several years of service on the Forest Hill City Council, in 1985 Walker became the first African American mayor in Tarrant County.

Walker has provided valuable civic service to the community serving on the Fort Worth Advisory Committee for the Development of a Strategic Water plan, Chairman of the Tarrant County Mayor’s Council, a member of the board of directors for the Texas Municipal League and president of the Texas Municipal League Region In addition, Walker is also a former president of the Ambassadors of Fort Worth Inc. and member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. Beta Tau Lambda Chapter, seated in Fort Worth.

Legends in the Making

Tracy Renee Williams

Currently serving as Vice President/Learning + Development for Valence Community as well as President of the TCU National Alumni Board. Williams is a talented keynote speaker, consultant and facilitator who has served on the board of directors for BRIDGE Fort Worth, Fort Worth Sister Cities International and Project M.I.C.A.H.

Shay Dial Johnson

Johnson is the Vice President of Community Engagement for Goodwill Industries of Fort Worth. She has been recognized numerous times for her outstanding work, including by the Fort Worth Business Press in 40 Forty Under 40 and BetterTarrant.com: Tarrant Influencer: Woman of Distinction. Johnson is a member of Beta Mu Omega (Fort Worth) Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

Jarrett “Jay” Jackson

Jarrett Jackson currently serves as the precinct administrator for the office of Tarrant County Commissioner Devan Allen, Precinct 2. Prior to his current role, Jackson served as field representative for the district office of U.S. Rep. Marc Veasey, D-Fort Worth.

Jackson also has served in various capacities aiding both city, and state campaigns.

Tia Cole

Tia Cole is the owner/operator of The Cole Lab LLC Fort Worth and is a talented consultant and facilitator who has provided service to various organizations throughout Tarrant County. Cole is currently an English Instructor at Tarrant County College and has served on the board of BRIDGE Black Young Professionals, Fort Worth, the Fort Worth Public Library Foundation and Ladder Alliance of Fort Worth.

Beta Tau Lambda is Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.’s third oldest Alumni Chapter in Texas, chartered in Fort Worth Dec. 4, 1940. The chapter actively supports the fraternity’s national programs and projects such as “Project Alpha” (male adolescence, teen pregnancy and health initiative) in collaboration with March of Dimes, “A Voteless People Is A Hopeless People” (voter registration) “Go To High School, Go To College” (youth counseling/high school mentoring programs), Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and Brother’s Keeper.

The Beta Tau Lambda Charitable Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not for profit dedicated to supporting the scholastic development of youth. Key programs supported by the foundation include Alpha Academy, male mentorship program for males 5th through 12th grade and the Alpha Beautillion scholarship program.