O N O R A R Y D E G R E E R E C I P I E N T S
RICK CURRY, S.J., Ph.D.
Actor, author, teacher and advocate for the disabled, Brother Rick
is the founder and Director of the National Theatre Workshop of the
(NTWH). Brother Curry, who was born with a physical handicap, studied
in New York, but because of his handicap, found it difficult to find
as an actor. In 1977, he founded NTWH, a non-profit educational,
and advocacy organization that trains the physically disabled in
arts. Since that time, the NTWH has grown into an international
with thousands of students and campuses in NYC and Belfast, Maine.
In 1999 he opened the NTWH Belson Bakery, a full service
and training school for persons with disabilities, offering online and
service of Brother Curry's Breads. He has been an observer for the
Theatre of the Deaf, has worked with the BBC in London, toured
schools in Japan and Israel and participated in programs at Loyola
in India. Brother Curry is also an accomplished writer and has authored
books, The Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking and The Secrets of
Pernessa Seele is founder and CEO of The Balm In Gilead, Inc., a
non-governmental organization that seeks to improve the health status
people of the African Diaspora by assisting faith communities in
life-threatening diseases, especially HIV/AIDS. The organization has
thousands of churches, both in the US and throughout Africa, to become
in preventing the transmission of HIV through educational programs and
support of all persons affected by HIV/AIDS and is currently mobilizing
communities in Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya, Nigeria and Tanzania.
One of the nation’s most prominent voices on the issues
HIV/AIDS, Ms. Seele has also conceived and implemented several
including The Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS, the
AIDS awareness program in the United States, targeting the African
faith community, and engaging nearly 10 million churchgoers since its
Pernessa Seele is the recipient of numerous prestigious
including being named one of 100 people “Shaping Our World” by TIME
Magazine and one of “50 Women Shaping the World” by Essence
John J. Sweeney was elected president of the AFL-CIO in October 1995
has been re-elected three times since. Born in the Bronx in New York,
son of Irish immigrants, Mr. Sweeney launched his trade union career
the Ladies Garment Workers. As SEIU president from 1980–1995, he led
successful Justice for Janitors campaign and increased SEIU membership
625,000 to 1.1 million. During that time, Mr. Sweeney initiated the
for stronger federal laws in the area of health and safety, sexual
and civil and immigrant rights and advocated for legally-mandated paid
leave, health care reform and a raise in the minimum wage.
Under his leadership, the AFL-CIO moved far more
into the support of national union organizing efforts and dramatically
its program for issues of education and political action. Mr. Sweeney
led the federation to support legalization for undocumented immigrants
expanded outreach to and leadership opportunities for women, people of
immigrant workers and students. As AFL-CIO president, he established
union movement’s first accredited National Labor College and
the innovative Working America affiliate that now includes more than
A nationally acknowledged leader committed to service
others, economic justice and political reform in the workplace, Mr.
has co-authored two books, including America Needs a Raise:
Economic Security and Social Justice and Solutions for the New
Force: Policies for a New Social Contract.
C O N G R
A T U L A T I O N S T O
T H E 2 0 0 7 C N R G R A D U A T E S
A N D T H E I
R F A
M I L I E S !
We did it!
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