January 16, 2013
On Sunday, January 20, the Nashville Symphony will present the Edwina Hefner Community Leadership Award to Andrea Blackman, Division Manager for the Special Collections Division of the Nashville Public Library. Each year, in conjunction with the Regions Let Freedom Sing! Concert honoring the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, the Nashville Symphony presents this award to a member of the community whose work exemplifies Dr. King’s legacy.
In 2003, after 11 years of consulting and teaching in both Florida and Tennessee, Blackman began coordinating the library's nationally recognized Civil Rights Room and Collection. She regularly speaks in the community and in academia on multicultural education, library services and oral history methodologies. Blackman has been recognized for her professional achievements with the Civil Rights Oral History Project and the library’s most recent endeavor of chronicling the events of the May 2010 flood. Under her leadership, the Nashville Public Library has launched four successful oral history projects: Civil Rights, Veterans History, Nashville Business Leaders and the 2010 Flood Digital Project.
Nashville Symphony Director of Education and Community Engagement Blair Bodine says, “It is so inspiring to see the impact that Andrea’s continuing work has had in the Middle Tennessee area. She has captured the stories, voices and visions of our community. Her passion for sharing the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement and her contribution as an educator is truly motivating to all.”
The Nashville Symphony’s Community Leadership Award was created in 2007 to recognize Edwina Hefner, an active volunteer with Let Freedom Sing! for 14 years, for her outstanding leadership and her numerous efforts throughout the Nashville community. The award recognizes individuals helping to make the world a better place through their leadership efforts.