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Dr. Williams and Dr. Allen Receive The Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentor Award

March 2023

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2023 Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentor Award Recipients

 Dr. Gertrude Gonzalez de Allen and Dr. Al-Yasha Williams

Gertrude Gonzalez de Allen and Al-Yasha Williams

The Caribbean Philosophical Association has selected Gertrude Gonzalez de Allen and Al-Yasha Williams as this year’s recipient of the Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentorship Award. It is an honor bestowed on an eminent scholar whose mentorship has cultivated an outstanding community of artists, scholars, teachers, or political activists in and beyond the academy.

The 2023 Hall award is shared this year because of the unusual collaborative work of the recipients. Dr. Gonzalez de Allen and Dr. Williams carry on Spelman College’s tradition of preparing students for the challenges of academe and other professions in which many have taken up leadership roles. Writing of their efforts and achievements, alumnae stated:

blue-quote-leftDr. Allen… taught me the value of philosophy as an act of creativity. Dr. Allen positioned me to see philosophy as an art to make sense of the world rather than theorizing from the armchair.

blue-quote-leftDr. Williams is a living example of theory and practice coming together. I remember working on a project for my UNCF Mellon-Mays fellowship about Black women’s anger, and she gave me this book about the topic that she remembered her mother having in the 1970s. I was so grateful for her willingness to pour into my work in such a tangible way. 

blue-quote-leftDr. Allen and Dr. Williams continue to guide numbers of hard-hitting, quality, Black women thinkers into academia, into philosophy, and into the world in general. I am grateful to have been taught and mentored by them…. They have been outstanding mentors to me, and so many Spelmanites before me, and I believe that they will be wonderful mentors to future Spelmanites.

Dr. Kathryn Sophia Belle, an alumna of Spelman College, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Penn State, and Director of Penn State’s Africana Research Center, as well as founder of the Collegium of Black Women Philosophers, wrote:

blue-quote-leftI enthusiastically support both Gertrude Gonzalez de Allen and Al-Yasha Williams for this award…. I have worked with both Gertrude and Al-Yasha, and I have seen their impact through the Collegium of Black Women Philosophers over the last 15 years, as well as through working with them in my own efforts to recruit from Spelman. Spelman has produced the highest number of Black women to go on to earn doctorates in philosophy of any other undergraduate institution in the US, and this has been made possible in large part (especially more recently) because of the work Gertrude and Al-Yasha have been doing there. They not only help to prepare Spelman students for graduate school, but they also continue to mentor and support students beyond their time at Spelman.

About the Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentor Award

Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentor AwardStuart Hall was one of the cofounders of British Cultural Studies. His work as a teacher, scholar, and activist in the Birmingham School of Cultural Studies is legendary. His students’ influence is worldwide. The purpose of this award is to acknowledge activists, artists, scholars, teachers, and theorists who have cultivated influential critical communities addressing the Caribbean Philosophical Association’s concerns of shifting the geography of reason. The Stuart Hall Outstanding Mentor Award began in 2018 with the approval of Professor Catherine Hall.


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