About the Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards

The Riley Institute partners annually with the Greenville Chamber to celebrate outstanding contributions in diversity. Winners of the awards, both individuals and organizations, are role models in the promotion of diversity, receiving awards in the following categories:

  • Calder D. Ehrmann Outstanding Individual: An individual who demonstrates a high degree of success in promoting diversity and inspires others to embrace diversity in the community.
  • William “Bill” T. Wylie VALUED Lives Award for School Excellence (K-12 School): A school that incorporates valued practices of diversity into its vision and mission and promotes these principles beyond the walls of the school, demonstrating that all students, faculty, and staff are important and have the potential to succeed.
  • Outstanding High School Student: A high school student who is viewed as a diversity champion and demonstrates a leading role in promoting diversity in the school environment or within the community.
  • Outstanding College Student: A college student who is viewed as a diversity champion and demonstrates a leading role in promoting diversity in the campus environment or within the community.
  • Outstanding Nonprofit Organization: A nonprofit or civic organization that focuses on integrating diversity practices in the services provided to its community.
  • Outstanding Business: A business that internally models diversity management and serves as a community diversity champion.

The Background Behind UDLA

The annual Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards originated as a community action project in the Diversity Leaders Initiative 2004 Upstate class. The community action project team, “Inclusion Infusion,” suggested an annual event that would recognize organizations and individuals for their accomplishments in improving diversity and inclusion in the Upstate. The idea was adopted by the Riley Institute and the Anderson, Greenville, and Spartanburg Chambers of Commerce, all of which have had representatives complete the Riley Institute’s Diversity Leaders Initiative program.

Past UDLA Award Winners

Calder D. Ehrmann Outstanding Individual

2022: Pat Michaels
2021: Charlene Cheeks
2020: Sean Dogan
2019: Brian Townsend
2018: Jim Daut
2017: Darian Blue
2016: Baxter Wynn
2015: Serita Acker
2014: Kinneil Coltman | Honorable Mention: David Taylor
2013: Marie Majarais Smith
2012: Jada Charley
2011: Judith Prince
2010: Juana Spears Slade
2009: S.T. Peden | Honorable Mentions: Ron Carpenter, Altheia Richardson
2008: Harry Shucker
2007: Leon Wiles
2006: John Miller

William “Bill” T. Wylie VALUED Lives Award for School Excellence (K-12 School)

2022: Greenville Early College
2021: Sterling School
2020: Tanglewood Middle School
2019: Berea High School
2018: Monaview Elementary School
2017: St. Joseph’s Catholic School
2016: Oakland Elementary School
2015: Legacy Charter School
2014: Berea Middle School
2013: Merrywood Elementary School
2012: Pendleton High School
2011: Fairforest Elementary

Outstanding High School Student

2022: Tatuana James, JL Mann High School
2021: Kori Gamble, Legacy Early College
2020: Parker Egbert, Emerald High School
2019: Hugh Hill, Woodmont High School
2018: Charlotte Capers Snoad, Mauldin High School
2017: Ingrid Ramos, Legacy Charter School
2016: Roann Abdeladl, Greenville Tech Charter High School
2015: Carlos Pineda, Mauldin High School | Honorable Mention: R.J. Rogers, Blue Ridge High School
2014: Brittany Gilliland, Brashier Middle College Charter High School | Honorable Mention: Napoleon Langston, JL Mann High School
2013: Bremond Byrd, South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities
2012: Bethany Mlinar, Emerald High School
2011: Carla Littlejohn, Greenville Tech Charter High School
2010: Azalia Martinez, Berea High School
2009: Taylor Fitch, Belton Honea Path High School | Honorable Mention: Raven Magwood, Greenville Technical Charter High School
2008: Damarius Taylor, Greenville High Academy
2007:Richard Berman, Greenville High School
2006: Michael Youssef, Southside High School
2005: Keith Barksdale, Jr., Christ Church Episcopal School

Outstanding College Student

2022: Jadin Beek, Southern Wesleyan University
2021: Tyler McDougald, Clemson University
2020: Alyssa “Adare” Smith, Furman University
2019: Antonio Harrison, Clemson University
2018: Adahila Nix, Greenville Technical College
2017: Drew Copeland, Wofford College
2016: Justus Cox, Anderson University
2015: Jonathan Kubakudundimana, Furman University
2014: Darien Smith, Clemson University
2013: Alyssa Gillis, Furman University
2012: Luis Gonzales, Furman University
2011: Jackeline Galvez, Clemson University
2010: Jemeka Harris, Furman University
2009: Danielle Tait, Furman University
2008: LaDarius Thompson, USC Upstate
2007: Darris Means, Clemson University
2006: Elvia Pacheco, USC Upstate
2005: Nadezhda Savova, Furman University

Outstanding Nonprofit Organization

2022: Greenville Tech Foundation
2021: Mosaic Educational and Arts Program
2020: Institute for Child Success
2019: Men of Color National Summit
2018: Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine Carolinas Campus
2017: Speaking Down Barriers
2016: Law Enforcement and Community Relations Task Force in Anderson, SC
2015: United Way of Greenville County | Honorable Mention: Greenville Technical College
2014: Year of Altruism | Honorable Mention: Upcountry History Museum
2013: Bon Secours St. Francis Health System
2012: Spartanburg School District Seven
2011: MLK Dream Weekend
2010: Call Me MISTER
2009: Bridges to Brighter Future
2008: Triune Mercy Center
2007: YWCA
2006: Greenville Literacy Association
2005: USC Upstate

Outstanding Business

2022: Brasfield and Gorrie
2021: Jordon Construction
2020: Milliken
2019: GHS Children’s Hospital
2018: GE
2017: Ogletree Deakins
2016: SC Airports Coalition
2015: Denny’s Corporation
2014: BMW
2013: TD Bank
2012: Smith Moore Leatherwood, LLP
2011: Erwin-Penland
2010: Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System
2009: Greenville Hospital System University Medical Center
2008: Walgreens
2007: Bon Secours, St. Francis
2006: BI-LO
2005: Anmed Health