Gartin Building Courtroom with the Great Seal of the State of Mississippi

MAE to honor Justice James E. Graves Jr. with award

March 8, 2002

The Mississippi Association of Educators on Monday, March 11, will honor Supreme Court Justice James E. Graves Jr. at its annual Human and Civil Rights and Scholarship Awards Banquet.

Justice Graves, guest speaker for the evening, will be presented the Humanized Education Award during a ceremony starting at 7 p.m. at the Clarion Hotel in Jackson.

Others being recognized during the MAE Human and Civil Rights and Scholarship Awards Banquet are former Gov. William Winter and WLBT-TV 3. Winter was recipient of the National Education Association 2001 Martin Luther King Award. MAE will give WLBT the School Bell Award for outstanding contributions to public education and the children of Mississippi. WLBT CEO Frank Melton will accept the award.

The Humanized Education Award is presented to a person outside the education profession who has made and continues to make outstanding contributions toward the improvement of relations and opportunities for students, educators and the education community.

Justice Graves is active in education and youth activities. He is a frequent speaker and participant in functions for students from elementary school through college.

Jackson Public Schools named him Parent of the Year for 2000-2001. He was first runner-up for State Parent of the Year. He coaches student mock trial teams. Teams he coached reached mock trial state finals every year since 1991.

Justice Graves, who served 10 years as a circuit judge in Hinds County, was appointed to the Supreme Court on Nov. 1, 2001. He dedicated his Nov. 15 investiture ceremony to the recognition of educators who shaped his life and career from elementary school through law school.

He graduated from Sumner Hill High School in Clinton, where he was valedictorian. He was also selected as Star Student in the Mississippi Economic Council's academic achievement program that recognizes high school seniors who have the highest grade point average and American College Test (ACT) score.

He attended Millsaps College, where he received a B.A. degree in sociology. After working at the Department of Public Welfare for almost two years, he enrolled at Syracuse University College of Law, where he received his law degree. He also holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, Syracuse, N.Y.

For more information, contact Beverly Pettigrew Kraft, court public information officer, at 601-354-7452.