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Published on Nov 24, 2009
Hendrix College awarded Odyssey Medals to seven alumni whose life achievements exemplify Your Hendrix Odyssey during a special ceremony as part of the colleges annual Founders Day Oct. 22. The recipients were honored during a convocation in Staples Auditorium on the Hendrix campus.
Douglas Blackmon 86, the Pulitzer Prize winning author of Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II, told the audience we are blessed to live in a time when Americans, can write about and think about and talk about things that even a few years ago would have been difficult to do. During the past 20 years, Blackmon has written extensively about the American quandary of race, exploring the integration of schools during his childhood in a Mississippi Delta farm town, lost episodes of the Civil Rights movement, and, repeatedly, the dilemma of how a contemporary society should grapple with a troubled past. As The Wall Street Journals bureau chief in Atlanta, he manages the papers coverage of the Southeastern U.S., including coverage of publicly traded companies and key news and issues, including race, immigration, poverty, politics and, in recent years, global warming and hurricanes Blackmon's stories or the work of his team have been nominated by the Journal for Pulitzer Prizes four times, including for coverage of the subprime meltdown, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Florida hurricanes in 2004 and for his 2001 examination of slave labor in the 20th century. His article on U.S. Steel was included in the 2003 edition of Best Business Stories. The Journals coverage of Hurricane Katrina received a special National Headliner award in 2006. Blackmon penned his first newspaper story at the age of 12, for the Progress, in his hometown of Leland, Mississippi.