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Nathalie Mullen James Receives 2024 Harford Civil Rights Leadership Award

20 February 2024

The 2024 Harford Civil Rights Project – Civil Rights Leadership Award was presented to Nathalie Mullen James, who has a long history of civil rights leadership in Harford County and around the United States, at a reception at Harford Community College on February 15. The award represents lifetime achievement and dedication to civil rights.

There were several speakers at the event including Dr. James Karmel, Harford Civil Rights Project (HCRP) Director and Professor of History at Harford Community College, who welcomed guests to the reception. Additional speakers included Dr. Theresa B. Felder, Harford Community College President; and HCRP students Alisha Smith and Gabriella Gaines. Special guests included longtime friends of Ms. James, JoWanda Lucas, Bertha Copeland and Clarence Davis, a former member of the Maryland General Assembly. Dr. Karmel presented the award to Ms. James.

Renowned musician and recording artist Benny Russell and his jazz trio entertained those in attendance with songs of the civil rights movement.

Nathalie Mullen James has been a civil rights leader for over 60 years. As a teenager in the 1960s, she led the Harford NAACP youth chapter in protests around Harford and the greater Baltimore region. She and her youth group faced harassment and intimidation as they demonstrated for causes such as fair housing and equality in hiring. In her lengthy career as a fair housing advocate, Ms. James worked as a housing counselor and caseworker for the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) agency. She also worked as a Fair Housing Coordinator in Harford County. Mrs. James is a member of the Harford County NAACP. She has served as a board member for the Harford Civil Rights Project.

2024 Harford Civil Rights Leadership Award

Nathalie Mullen James Receives 2024 Harford Civil Rights Leadership AwardNathalie Mullen James
Pictured: (L to R) Dr. Theresa B. Felder, Nathalie Mullen James, Dr. Jamie Karmel

Photo Credit: Ujen Jonchhe



Nancy Dysard

Director for Communications

Sheila Terry

Assistant Director for Public Relations