Alumnus Darius Quinn became the third consecutive person with Ferris State University ties to win a prestigious Giants Award from the Bob and Aleicia Woodrick Diversity Learning Center at Grand Rapids Community College.
Quinn was a recipient of the W.W. Plummer Humanitarian Award named in honor of a dentist who donates services each summer to the Foundation Pedodntique in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. The 1997 Ferris graduate expressed that he is honored to follow two other distinguished men with university ties as winners of a Giants Award. In 2011, Ferris Board of Trustees chair and alumnus Ronald Snead received the William Glenn Trailblazer Award, and in 2010 Arlen Dean Gaddy, who attended Ferris, was presented with the Phyllis Scott Activist Award.
“It could be pure coincidence that three people with Ferris State University ties have been recipients of a Giants Award each of the past three years, but I do not think that this is the case,” said Quinn, who works as Kent County’s human resources manager. “I know plenty of friends on the east side of the state and other parts of Michigan who are also more than worthy of similar recognition, but they may not have the opportunity to be recognized like we do here in West Michigan. Ferris has prepared many students, including its African-American student population, for a life of service.”
Quinn believes that these awards earned by the three men also are indicative of an important outreach effort on the part of Ferris.
“The fact that three Ferris State University people have been the recipients of a Giants Award over the past three years says a lot about how far Ferris has come in reaching out to attract, retain and include people of color into the university’s environment and culture,” Quinn said. “I am ever more confident that under the leadership of Ferris Board of Trustee Chairman and former Giants recipient Ron Snead and current Ferris President David Eisler that the university is heading in the right direction to true inclusion.”
Standing alongside Gaddy and Snead is a mark of pride for Quinn.
“I am fortunate to have had the chance to know both Mr. Gaddy and Mr. Snead prior to them earning their distinguished awards. This has helped me to appreciate the true value of being selected as a Giant, because both men are truly outstanding pillars of the West Michigan community,” Quinn said. “They both represent goodwill towards all, strength, stability for their families and a strong sense of community purpose. Even without the formal recognition, they both would be considered Giants in my book.”
For more information about the Giants awards or the Woodrick Diversity Learning Center, contact Christina Arnold at (616) 234-3390.