2015 Selma Essay Contest Winners

On Tuesday, April 21, 2015, the National Liberty Museum was thrilled to host an award ceremony that marked the culmination of the national Selma Speech & Essay Contest, made possible thanks to grant funding from the John Templeton Foundation and in-kind charitable gifts from Paramount Pictures.

 

Out of almost 800 submissions from 43 states, twelve finalists were chosen, and the top three – Ifeoma White-Thorpe, Evan Lehmann, and Edan Armas – were welcomed to the National Liberty Museum for the Selma Award Ceremony.

The ceremony kicked off with a spectacular red carpet welcome for the students, who were accompanied by their family members and their adult sponsors who guided them throughout the contest.

As the students entered the Museum, former Pennsylvania Senator Harris Wofford rang the NLM Liberty Bell to start the ceremony. Senator Wofford was an original Selma marcher and adviser to Martin Luther King, Jr.

NLM CEO Gwen Borowsky then welcomed the Girard College Cavalier Band & Choir (directed by former Teacher as Hero winner, Paul Eaton). The students set an inspirational tone for the day with their moving rendition of “Glory.” Next, guests watched special remarks from SELMA actor David Oyelowo and director Ava DuVernay.

The ceremony was hosted by KYW news reporter Cherri Gregg, who welcomed Senator Wofford to speak about his experience in Selma, as well as his work with Dr. King. Senator Wofford went on to tell the students what an inspiration they are: “Mr. Armas, Mr. Lehmann, and Miss White-Thorpe, you have used your voices to speak about individual freedom and self-determination in a way that would have made Dr. King proud.”

Cherri Gregg explained to the audience that while the students knew they were in the top three, none of them knew what place they had actually won. Ms. Gregg then invited each student to the stage, where they shared their inspiration and gave their speeches. Before making the big announcement, the students were surprised with recorded messages of support and congratulations from their schools. Then, it was finally time to learn who would be taking home the grand prize of $5,000. Edan Armas was named the third place winner, and then came the biggest surprise of the day – Gwen Borowsky announced that Evan and Ifeoma tied for first place! Each student scored identically to one hundredth of a point!

After each student received their prize, Deputy City Representative Elka Battle read a proclamation from Mayor Nutter proclaiming April 21, 2015 “Voices of Liberty Day.”


GiveBack Workshops

GiveBack Workshops at NLM are a unique way of volunteering and the perfect spark to activate your family’s sense of empathy, respect, and responsibility, the character traits that make someone a true hero of liberty. A different GiveBack Workshop is held once each month on a Saturday morning. You and your children will work together to complete a “make-and-donate” activity specifically designed by the partner organization for that month.

Check our events calendar for all the upcoming GiveBack Workshops –and the organizations with whom we are partnering.

Welcome the Stranger Exhibit

Welcome the Stranger, a one-woman exhibit of cast glass, ceramics, and mixed media by artist Micaela Amateau Amato, will be on display in our GlassAccess Gallery from March 9 - June 9, 2019. This collection of works is Amato's interpretation of modern and historic figures who rose like “superheroes” to accept seemingly impossible challenges of liberty. Shown here are cast glass sculptures of Harriet Tubman and Eleanor Roosevelt.

Learn more about this exhibit –and the Opening Event on Friday, March 8– by clicking here.

An Evening with Women in Leadership

Join us on Thursday, March 28, at 7:00pm for an evening of discussion, reflection, and discourse with a panel of female entrepreneurs, artists, and business leaders. You’ll hear their first-hand accounts of their personal journeys and collective experiences across different sectors.

Learn more and reserve your place today by clicking here.

Read and Romp

Join us with your little learner, ages 2-6, for Read & Romp, an exciting hour of imaginative storytelling, interactive games, and creative crafts in the Museum’s galleries. Read & Romps are held twice a week, on Monday and Saturday mornings. Learn about the “story of the week” and choose the day that works best for you! Snacks and Museum admission are included.

Check our events calendar for upcoming Read & Romps.

Lila Liberty's Hero Quest

Join Lila Liberty on her quest to spread acceptance and kindness by helping her collect her "Super Hero Gadgets" throughout the Museum. This self-guided experience will encourage your child to understand how qualities like empathy, integrity, responsibility, and courage define what it means to be a Hero.

Lila Liberty’s Hero Quest is available between 12-5:00pm every Saturday and Sunday. It is included in the cost of admission. Learn more.

The Foreign Policy Research Institute to host two events

The Foreign Policy Research Institute is dedicated to bringing the insights of scholarship to the foreign policy and national security challenges facing the United States. The National Liberty Museum is pleased to host their Geopolitics with Granieri Series, which features conversations with guest scholars on subjects in the news. Click here to learn about their upcoming events in February and March, 2019

Nominate a deserving teacher for our 2019 Teacher as Hero Awards

Nominations are now open for our annual Teacher as Hero Awards. This yearly recognition program, sponsored by State Farm®, honors outstanding educators in the Delaware Valley.

Click here to learn more and nominate a deserving teacher today.

The Inspiring Stories of our 2018 Awards of Valor Honorees

This annual awards program, presented by YOUR LOCAL CHEVROLET DEALERS, honors police officers, firefighters, EMTs and other emergency responders for extraordinary acts of courage, empathy, and meritorious service. The 2018 Awards Ceremony was held on September 12. Our honorees' inspiring stories are now posted on the 2018 Awards of Valor page. Check them out today!

Chevrolet supports first responders. Learn more.