PULLMAN, Wash. — A Washington State University student, university employee and Pullman resident were honored during WSU’s 15th annual celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Jan. 22 at the university’s Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum.
WSU senior Alice Chavez, WSU employee Lonnie Dunlap and Rosalie Harms of Pullman were recognized for their commitment to ethnic diversity and King’s ideals and ideas.
WSU President V. Lane Rawlins presented each with a WSU Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Service Award, selected by the WSU Martin Luther King Jr. Awards Committee chaired by Steve Nakata, director of the WSU Office of Multicultural Student Services.
Chavez is chair of the Native American Women’s Association and active in planning for Native American cultural events. Nakata called Chavez a model multicultural student at WSU because of her service to the Native American Student Center, particularly as a student mentor. “She is serious about her academic mission, but at the same time, never passed on an opportunity to help other students along the way,” he said. The daughter of Celia Castillo and Serasin Chaev, Los Angeles, she is a 1992 graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School, Compton, Calif.
Dunlap is interim director of the WSU Office of Career Services nominees praised her leadership for creating a faculty position “focusing on meeting the career development needs of multicultural students, as well as integrating diversity efforts as a core value.” Nakata said Dunlap’s commitment to diversity extends to women, faculty, those with disabilities, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered students and their allies, and ethnically diverse students and faculty members. He described Dunlap as a “source of inspiration for those who know and work with her.”
Harms is a third grade teacher at Pullman’s Franklin Elementary School. Those who nominated Harms praised her work for the diversity committee of the Pullman School District, the Pullman Human Rights Task force and YWCA of WSU Racial Justice Conference planning committee. Harms’ students benefit from her strong advocacy of the less fortunate, emphasis on the importance of inclusion and the diversity of ideas she integrates into the curriculum, Nakata said. “She is dedicated to teaching Pullman youth the ideas of social justice,” he added.