Saturday March 1, 2014

School of Law to honor Sidney Williams at Cinque banquet

The University of Dayton Black Law Students Association (BLSA) will honor Sidney Williams, director of Central State University's Pre-Law Program and Special Initiatives, at its annual Joseph Cinque Award banquet at 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 4, at the University of Dayton School of Law.

“Mr. Williams was chosen based on his unwavering support of legal education and his dedication to aspiring lawyers,” said Andrew Hughes, BLSA president.

Staci Rucker, dean of student affairs, will be the event's keynote speaker. Rucker will discuss the importance of and need for black attorneys in today’s legal environment. The BLSA also will present a college scholarship to a local student.

“As the costs of attending college are steadily rising, our hope is that our scholarship will aid a Dayton area high school student in achieving his or her career goal and will ease the burden of obtaining such a noble goal," Hughes said.

This event is open to all members of the Dayton legal community. The cost is $20 and includes a reception, dinner and entertainment. Contact Hughes at no later than March 20 to reserve your spot or be an event sponsor.

The Joseph Cinque Award recognizes individuals who engage in community service and are positive role models to young attorneys. The award is named in honor of Joseph Cinque, who led a rebellion on the slave ship Amistad in 1839. John Quincy Adams represented Cinque and 52 shipmates in court and eventually persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court to exonerate the men with an eight-hour speech. That decision was pivotal in the anti-slave movement.

Past recipients include the Hon. Alice McCollum, Montgomery County probate judge; Gail Littlejohn, former Dayton City School District board president (deceased); John Garland, past president of Central State University; Alvarene Owens, attorney; Daryl Ward, pastor of Omega Baptist Church; Anthony VanNoy, attorney; and the Hon. Deirdre Logan, Dayton municipal court judge.

For more information, contact Denise Baker, assistant director of communications at the University of Dayton School of Law, at 937-229-3342 or