The Black History Month Scholarship Luncheon will take place at noon on Monday, Feb. 18, in the Health and Physical Education Complex. It will be hosted by U.S. Congressman Sanford Bishop and State Rep. Calvin Smyre. North Carolina Congressman and U.S. Chief Deputy Whip G. K. Butterfield is the keynote speaker. The campaign will fund university scholarships and has a goal of $250,000.
Butterfield is a life-long resident of eastern North Carolina. His father was the first black elected official elected in eastern North Carolina in the 20th century. His mother was a classroom teacher for 48 years. Congressman Butterfield's law practice was devoted to representing poor people with extraordinary legal problems. He was considered the “People's Lawyer” in his hometown – a title that earned him great respect and admiration in the community. He is best known for successfully handling several Voting Rights lawsuits in eastern North Carolina counties resulting in the Court-ordered implementation of district elections for local officials.
In February of 2001, North Carolina Governor Mike Easley appointed Congressman Butterfield to the seven-member North Carolina Supreme Court. Congressman Butterfield currently serves on the Energy and Commerce Committee and serves on the Energy and Air Quality; Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection; and Environment and Hazardous Materials subcommittees. Beginning in the 110th Congress, Congressman Butterfield was appointed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Whip Jim Clyburn to serve as one of eight Chief Deputy Whips responsible for helping to formulate Democratic policy and ensuring the passage of legislation.