CHARLESTON -- Celebrating the 25th year of promoting its core principle of "Change, Not Charity," the Appalachian Community Fund has honored West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw with its Appalachian Hero Award for 2012.
Citing his long-standing efforts to stop the erosion of citizen's rights, the ACF acknowledged McGraw for "his work with social change and justice" last week during a ceremony at a Charleston for Change event hosted by the West Virginia Association for Justice.
In presenting the Appalachian Hero Award to McGraw on behalf of the Appalachian Community Fund, the WVAJ's Anthony Majestro referred to a speech by Frederick Douglass on the struggles and tempests that confront those who strive for justice.
"Darrell McGraw is a living example of the kind of courage and commitment -- and willingness to confront and change wrongdoing -- that Frederick Douglass spoke of," Majestro said. "Judge McGraw has given many, many people in West Virginia a chance to work for real justice."
"Over the 25 years of its dedicated service and advocacy, the ACF has relied on Appalachian virtues and heritage to carve out lasting paths to social and economic fairness," said McGraw, a native of Wyoming County, in his acceptance remarks. "In doing so, it has supported and encouraged many important causes that are dear to my own heart. I am honored and humbled to receive this award."
Based in Knoxville, Tenn., the Appalachian Community Fund serves the Central and Southern Appalachian region, including West Virginia. The foundation funds grassroots efforts to increase the power of ordinary people to work for social justice, following a vision that promotes civil rights, a clean environment, equal opportunity, and fair employment.