Professor Brenda Cartwright receives National Association's highest award

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Jennifer L. Parks, (808) 956-0416
Communications Coordinator , College of Education
Posted: Aug 15, 2011

Brenda Cartwright
Brenda Cartwright
University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa College of Education Professor Brenda Y. Cartwright received the Virgie Winston-Smith Lifetime Achievement Award at the National Association of Multicultural Rehabilitation Concerns (NAMRC) 18th Annual Training Conference last month in Atlanta, Georgia. Cartwright, a professor in the college’s Department of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Science, was recognized for her distinguished career in support of rehabilitation and multicultural issues.
Named in memory of Virgie Winston-Smith, a longtime member and advocate of NAMRC, the award signifies the breadth and quality of work, as well as the longevity and perseverance of attention to multicultural issues in rehabilitation over a lifetime of service.
“Probably most significant in Dr. Cartwright's career is her commitment to facilitating the growth and development of other minority professionals,” Dr. L. Robert McConnell, Assistant Professor at Western Michigan University, wrote in his letter of nomination. “This is seen in the number of new rehabilitation educators she has taken under her wing and who regard her as mentor, assisting them with tenure track coaching, inviting them to publish with her, or giving ‘tough love’ to facilitate their growth.”
McConnell cited an example of the high regard Cartwright’s peers and fellow professional have for her. During the NAMRC conference, a deaf professional signed to music, "You are the Wind Beneath My Wings," an impromptu dedication to Cartwright.
In her acceptance speech, Cartwright declared, “I don’t know what the future holds for me, but I know there is a vision for my life that is greater than my imagination can hold. I will continue to be used in whatever ways are necessary to ensure that people of color can fulfill their God-given visions. I thank you for this award because it encourages me to run on and see what more I can do.”
Cartwright acknowledged Dr. Jorge Garcia for introducing her to NAMRC; the deaf community for helping her to find her passion; and everyone who has nurtured, guided, supported, and loved her.