The Seventh Biennial Awards Banquet organized by the Office of Sponsored Programs, Contracts & Grants was held on March 27th, 2008 for the Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) faculty and staff.

The bi-annual event spotlights outstanding efforts by the faculty to bring grants and sponsorships to the university. The awards banquet is held every two years to give new and developing grant writers an opportunity to hone their grant writing skills and to become eligible for next awards banquet in 2010. 
Award Winners
Left to Right: Dr. Willie Gilchrist, Dr. Linda Hayden, Dr. Jinchun Yuan, Dr. Ephraim Gwebu, Dr. Ali Khan, Mr. Morris Autry
The awards banquet was held as part of a grant writing workshop at the K. E. White Graduate Center. The Office of Sponsored Programs, Contracts, and Grants at Elizabeth City State University presented the workshop entitled "Establishing Partnerships Through Research". The purpose of the conference workshop was to sharpen the skills of participants for the development of winning proposals and to provide face-to-face interaction with federal, state and local agencies and foundations. The guest speaker for the workshop was Mrs. Diane A. Jones, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education.
Mr. Herman Boone - Guest Speaker, Awards Ceremony

BooneHerman Boone was head coach of a high school football team that won a state championship in 1971. And while there have been thirty more state championships since then, what makes his so special?

In 1971, racial tensions ran high in Alexandria, VA, as three schools were newly integrated to form the T.C. Williams High School. It was from this union that the Titan football team was created. The former rivalries between the schools coupled with the strain between the black and white players resulted in a team that was far from united. The Titans became one of the best teams in Virginia, compiling a 13-0 record and went on to win the state championship.

In 1971, Boone faced the challenge of a lifetime, and his inspirational story was captured in the Disney film Remember the Titans starring Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington. Titans screenwriter Gregory Allen Howard said in a Washington Post interview, Herman is Shakespearean. The beauty of Herman and what he did was that it was sort of unconscious. If you'd ask Herman when he took over T.C. Williams, 'Were you trying to make a point with these kids?' he would have said, 'No, I just want to win football games.' He had to get the players to get along to win football games. And it worked for just that reason-because it wasn't self-conscious. He did something quite beyond what even he realized."

Boone is now retired but continues to motivate and inspire audiences with presentations on respect, teamwork, community involvement and importance of character, among others.