New York, NY, March 11, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- UNCF (United Negro College Fund) will host its New York A Mind Is…® Gala set for 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 19 at Cipriani 42nd Street. More than 300 guests are expected to attend, including civic and community leaders, corporate sponsors and other supporters. The purpose of the event is to raise funds for UNCF while recognizing local individuals and corporations who continue to support the development and education of minority students.

During the past 76 years, UNCF has empowered more than half a million students to earn college degrees. As the largest and most effective minority education organization in the United States, UNCF actively supports 37 private historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), advocates for minority higher education and provides more than 10,000 scholarships annually.

“UNCF continues to change the HBCU narrative across the nation,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, president and CEO, UNCF. “Events such as the New York UNCF A Mind Is…® Gala raise awareness of our mission and equip more students of color with the resources necessary to transition into college, graduate and ultimately expand and diversify America’s highly educated workforce.”

This year’s event honorees are Thasunda Brown Duckett, chief executive officer, Chase Consumer Banking, to be presented the Leadership Award; PepsiCo to be presented the Corporate Partner Award; and Dennis M. Walcott, president and chief executive officer, Queens Public Library, to be presented the Shirley Chisholm Award.

Since its founding 76 years ago, UNCF has empowered more than half a million students to earn college degrees. Events, like the UNCF A Mind Is…® New York Gala, enable the organization to help thousands of students get to and through college. Event sponsors for this year include JPMorgan Chase & Co., Delta Air Lines and PepsiCo.

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to recognize Thasunda Brown Duckett, Dennis Walcott and PepsiCo,” said Diego Aviles, vice president, northeast development. “They are extraordinary leaders who are helping to advance educational opportunities for young people of color.”

The gala will feature a reception, a live auction, an elegant dinner, live entertainment and dancing. Entertainment will be provided by Grammy-nominated singer and humanitarian, Kenny Lattimore.

For sponsorship or ticket information, please visit Follow this event on social media @UNCFNY #UNCFNYGala #UNCFNY.


About UNCF
UNCF (the United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, supports and strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized trademark, A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”®.” ® Learn more at or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.

Mashari Grissom
United Negro College Fund, Inc. (UNCF)