The Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area was recently recognized for it's work by the National Park Service. As part of that recognition, a press release crafted by NPS was sent to media outlets around the world. Below is a copy of their release:
National Park Service Centennial Award Recognizes Mississippi Delta Heritage Initiative
ATLANTA – This week, the National Park Service (NPS) presented the agency’s prestigious Director’s Centennial Award to Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area (MDNHA) and Delta Center for Culture and Learning at Delta State University for their work establishing the Delta Jewels Oral History Partnership in Mississippi. The award celebrates the efforts of NPS staff and partners who have significantly advanced the NPS Centennial goal of connecting with and creating the next generation of national park visitors, supporters, and advocates.
In March 2015, MDNHA staff partnered with Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist and author Alysia Burton Steele to host community meetings and events highlighting oral histories and stories of African-American church mothers in the Mississippi Delta. In response to demand for this program, Steele and the MDNHA continued to host events at colleges, universities, and churches across the state of Mississippi. The partnership culminated in March 2016 with a presentation at the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum in Washington, DC in celebration of Women’s History Month and the NPS Centennial.
“The Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area and the Delta Center demonstrated exceptional leadership and creativity in organizing community gatherings with Alysia Burton Steele that attracted more than a thousand attendees,” said Chris Abbett, National Park Service associate regional director for partnerships, interpretation, and education.
Dr. Rolando Herts, director of the Delta Center and MDNHA executive director said, “We are honored to receive this esteemed recognition from the National Park Service for this important cultural heritage development project."
"We are thrilled with the results of the Delta Jewels partnership," said Dr. Myrtis Tabb, MDNHA board chair. "This program was one of our very first and was extremely successful right off the bat. We are eager to build upon that success with continued partnerships that will help share the diverse stories of the Mississippi Delta."
About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities.
Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebookwww.facebook.com/nationalparkservice and Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice.
About the Mississippi Delta NHA: The MDNHA is a partnership between the people of the Mississippi Delta and the National Park Service. The mission of the MDNHA is to foster preservation, perpetuation, and celebration of the Mississippi Delta’s heritage through collaboration and sustainable economic development. For more information, visitwww.msdeltaheritage.com.