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Home » Diversity Report » AFM Diversity Committee Encourages All Locals to Participate in Diversity Awards

AFM Diversity Committee Encourages All Locals to Participate in Diversity Awards

  -  AFM Diversity Committee Chair and Member of Local 65-699 (Houston, TX)

by Lovie Smith-Wright, AFM Diversity Committee Chair and Member of Local 65-699 (Houston, TX)

The AFM Diversity Committee has been hard at work preparing for the 102nd AFM International Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada. Diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) training has been a big part of our discussions over the last two years, and we finally have a completed project. We spent a great deal of time working with AFM International Vice President Bruce Fife and AFM directors to see what we could do collectively to offer DEIA training for local officers of the AFM. As a result of our collaboration, two members of the AFM Diversity Committee, Local 618 (Albuquerque, NM) President Tracey Whitney and Local 7 (Orange County, CA) President Edmund Velasco, along with other staff and AFM President Ray Hair, finished a Race and Labor Diversity Training program that will soon be implemented as part of the AFM Officer Training program.

Diversity Awards

The AFM Diversity Awards, which were created in 2005 to recognize outstanding examples of diversity in the AFM, will be awarded at the AFM Convention in June. The three awards to be presented are: the Presidents’ Local Award, the Charles Walton Diversity Advocate Award, and the Charles McDaniel Youth Award.

  • The Presidents’ Local Award is awarded to the local that demonstrates diversity, equity, and inclusion via its executive board, articles in the local’s newsletter, a local diversity committee, or events sponsored by the local that showcase diversity in various genres of music. Locals that have previously won the Presidents’ Local Award are not eligible.
  • The Charles Walton Diversity Advocate Award is for a member who has shown dedication to both union and community issues throughout their lifetime.
  • The Charles McDaniel Youth Award is for anyone aged 16 to 35 who has shown accomplishment as a young, upcoming musician in their local and throughout their community.

There are two stages to the application process. While the procedures are standard, they differ on criteria. Some of the mechanisms are designed to achieve a sense of thought and hard work by the applicants. The first stage of the application process ends March 3, 2023. After the awards committee has reviewed stage one applications, those applicants who are chosen to go on to stage two will be notified. The second stage will end April 15, 2023. Final applications are criteria certified by the Diversity Awards Committee and judged by independent judges.

The AFM fully supports this program and wants to encourage every local to participate. President Hair will be notifying all local officers about this year’s Diversity Awards program. Each local must have an awards nomination/review committee consisting of at least three people or the local’s executive board. The AFM Diversity Committee will be following up with locals to remind them of the application process and to answer any questions local officers may have about the process.

Local officers can access the applications for all three Diversity Awards on the members’ section of in the Document Library > Officers Folder > Diversity Awards Applications. All applications must be submitted from the local to the AFM President’s office.

Upcoming Diversity Committee presentations and caucuses that will be presented at the AFM Convention will be announced soon.

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