Alcorn President to receive 2013 Brazilian race award, launches book drive

Alcorn State, Miss. (October 31, 2013) – The Honors Council of the Society of Afro-Brazilian Socio-Cultural Development (AFROBRAS) in Sao Paulo, Brazil has announced that they will honor Dr. M. Christopher Brown II, president of Alcorn State University. Dr. Brown will receive the “Troféu Raça Negra 2013” (or Black Race Trophy) which is the highest honor given by the AFROBRAS. The trophy is also known as the “Black Oscar” within the Afro-Brazilian community. This year’s celebration will be held in conjunction with the decennial anniversary of Zumbi dos Palmares University, the only higher education institution for Afro-Brazilians.

Dr. José Vicente, President of AFROBRAS and Rector of Zumbi University, announced that President Brown was selected because of his leadership of the United State’s oldest public historically black land-grant university, Alcorn’s commitment to the educational of Afro-Brazilians, and the new partnerships being designed for institutional exchanges. Since Dr. Brown’s arrival at Alcorn, the institution has become a key leader in the Brazilian Scientific Mobility Program (formerly Science Without Borders) and participated in the recent Mississippi trade mission to Brazil.

Dr. Vicente stated, “The award honors those who fight for racial equality. It is given each November during the celebration of National Black Consciousness Day, a day Brazilians honor the accomplishments of those of African decent.”

In appreciation of the award and recognition of Zumbi University’s anniversary, President Brown announced a book donation program for what he called “Brazil’s only HBCU”. President Brown hopes to collect 1,000 books – one hundred books for each year of Zumbi’s existence. President Brown started off the donations with two books – “Against Great Odds, The History of Alcorn State University” and “Mostrando a Lingua: Albert Einstein”.

“My mother and grandmother instilled in me a passion for reading and writing at an early age,” says a serious President Brown. “This is not about building a bigger library but more about the lives that can be impacted in profound ways from reading and gaining new knowledge and insight. Imagine the possibilities of how those who are influenced by Zumbi’s library can go forward and impact the world in profound ways.”

Those interested in donating books may drop them off at J. D. Boyd Library on Alcorn’s Lorman campus. For more information contact Eva Smith at 601.877.6353 or [email protected] .


Alcorn State University is a premier comprehensive land-grant university that develops diverse students into globally competitive leaders, and applies scientific research through collaborative partnerships that benefit the surrounding communities, state, nation, and world.