As founder of the Delaware Social Justice Remembrance Coalition, Savannah Shepherd '20 has been an active voice for discussions and actions focusing on race and justice. Her efforts did not go unnoticed by the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Savannah was among the local figures who were tapped for recognition by the group at their 55th Annual Freedom Fund dinner and celebration, which was held in November 2019.
At the event, which was attended by local and state political dignitaries and officials of various nonprofit organizations, Savannah was honored with the Youth Visionary Award and praised for her advocacy for equality for all. In her acceptance speech, Savannah shared: “It has been an incredible experience to have the opportunity to meet so many other people who are making a difference in our state. It is exciting to hear everyone speak and listen to their kind words. It’s really uplifting. I am excited to see what else the state will produce. People are taking that step and having uncomfortable conversations and are really speaking out.”
Held at the Downtown Doubletree in Wilmington, honorees and other guests were treated to a social hour, dinner, and the awards ceremony celebrating the theme “When We Fight, We Win.” Delaware Attorney General Kathy Jennings was the keynote speaker, and her remarks addressed efforts to stem gun violence. After the program, the Anthony “Big Cat” Smith Jazz Quintet provided entertainment.
Savannah was in distinguished company as she joined those selected for awards. Other honorees included: Kyle Evans, president of the Junior League of Wilmington; Emily Vera, leader of the Mental Health Association in Delaware; Dr. D. Dusty Blakey, superintendent of the Colonial School District, Rev. Charles Amos, pastor of the U.A.M.E. Church Family; Bennie and Shirley Smith, directors of Bennie Smith Funeral Homes; and Tamara Fair, Esq, executive director of the Wilmington Hope Commission.