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Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity


Celebration 2017 brand color

The University of Washington has a longstanding commitment to diversity and a profound interest in cultivating a diverse student body. The Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity (OMA&D) and the Friends of the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) are pleased to present the 47th annual Celebration, an annual event that features the outstanding achievements, inspiring stories  and academic success of our students. Celebration also raises funds for scholarships and recognizes the Charles E. Odegaard Award recipient. Over 500 business and community patrons support this event each year.

When: Tuesday, May 16, 2017

5:00 p.m. – Reception
6:00 p.m. – Call to Dinner
6:30 p.m. – Celebration

Husky Union Building
UW Campus, Seattle, WA 98195

For event information, contact Melanie Truong at or (206) 685-9894. For table sponsorship opportunities, contact Rhonda Smith at or (206) 616-2492.

The University of Washington is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodations in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodations for this event, contact the Disability Services Office at least ten days in advance at: 206-543-6450 (voice); 206-543-6452 (TTY); 206-685-7264 (FAX); (email).

EOP Student Scholarships and Awards

UW President Ana Mari Cauce congratulates 2016 President's Achievement recipien, Ruben Reyes

UW President Ana Mari Cauce congratulates 2016 President’s Achievement Award recipient, Ruben Reyes

EOP awards are presented to students who have made impressive contributions to our campus and community, while achieving academic excellence.

Past Celebration Scholarship Recipients

Charles E. Odegaard Award

Charles E. Odegaard AwardThe Charles E. Odegaard Award was established in April of 1973 to honor a member of our community whose leadership sustains the former University of Washington President’s distinguished work (1958-1973) on behalf of diversity at the UW and citizens of the state. It is the only University and community selected award and is regarded as the highest achievement in diversity at the University.

The Odegaard “Unity” Award is a teak sculpture by the late Seattle artist, George Tsutakawa (1910-1997). Mr. Tsutakawa is an internationally recognized painter and sculptor known for more than 75 major bronze fountain sculptures set in public spaces in the U.S., Canada, and Japan. “Unity” and the “Unity” plaque, are permanently housed and displayed in the Office of the Vice President and Vice Provost for Minority Affairs and Diversity to publicly honor all of the outstanding recipients of this prestigious award.

 2017 Odegaard Award Recipient

Joanne HarrellJoanne Harrell, a member of the University of Washington Board of Regents and senior director for U.S. Citizenship and Public Affairs at Microsoft, and husband Bruce, President of the Seattle City Council, are the 2017 recipients of the Charles E. Odegaard Award. As alumni, Joanne, ’76, ’79, and Bruce, ’79, ’84, have both made significant contributions to the university. A Regent since 2009, Joanne served as board chair in 2012-13 and advocates for creating a more inclusive campus environment as the chair of the Regents’ Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Committee. Bruce has been a member of the UW Alumni Board of Trustees, as well as the UW Business and Economic Development Center Advisory Board. Joanne has worked at Microsoft since 2001 and held leadership roles for the majority of her career across high-tech, telecommunications and non-profit sectors. Currently at Microsoft, Joanne and her team work to change lives by cultivating public and private partnerships across the country that address problems relating to education, literacy rates and helping young people become more competitive. Bruce has been a council member for the City of Seattle since 2007. He currently chairs the Education, Equity and Governance Committee and is president of the nine-member City Council. He has consistently protected the rights of people and advocated for respect and civility. The Harrells have received many individual community and leadership awards, including distinguished alumni honors from the UW.

2017 Celebration Videos