The Grawemeyer Awards, presented by the University of Louisville, are five annual prizes given in the fields of music, improving world order, psychology, education, and religion. They were established in 1984 by H. Charles Grawemeyer, the founder and CEO of the Reliance Paint and Varnish Company, with an initial endowment of $9 million.
This year’s award in the religion category was given to Kelly Brown Douglas, dean of the Union Theological Seminary’s Episcopal Divinity School in New York City. She was honored for her book Resurrection Hope: A Future Where Black Lives Matter (Orbis, 2021). “Douglas takes us on a captivating, painful journey with personal and erudite reflections on America’s corrupted soul,” said Tyler Mayfield, the Grawemeyer Religion Award director. “Her insights are lucid and disturbing. Her remedies are bold and constructive. May we find the courage to walk into the future she envisions for us all.”
Dr. Douglas also serves as a canon theologian at Washington Cathedral. She is one of the first Black female Episcopal priests in the United States and the first Black person to head an Episcopal Church-affiliated educational institution.
Dr. Douglas is a graduate of Denison University in Granville, Ohio, where she majored in psychology. She holds a master of divinity degree and a doctorate in systematic theology from the Union Theological Seminary.