Ann Hodges, professor of law at the University of Richmond, has been selected as a 2014 recipient of the Elizabeth Hurlock Beckman Award. This national award was created to recognize academic faculty who have inspired former students to dedicate their work to the betterment of their community. Hodges was nominated by Victor Narro, a former student who became a prominent immigrants’ rights advocate.
“I am truly honored to receive the award. To be recognized for inspiring a student is the greatest honor a teacher can have,” Hodges said. “The award is a tremendous tribute to the work that Victor Narro has done over the last 20 plus years with low wage and immigrant workers.”
Hodges developed a passion for labor and employment issues while in college, and it continued to grow throughout graduate and law school. She worked in government enforcement of labor laws and as an attorney for workers before coming the University of Richmond to teach.
Narro uncovered his own passion for labor issues while taking one of Hodges’ classes. Since then, Narro has worked on legal cases, policies and campaigns for immigrant workers’ rights. He also co-founded the Community Labor Environmental Action Network to help establish car-wash employee unions.
“Ann taught me that behind every court decision were people struggling to win the fundamental rights for a better life, and how their struggles were interconnected with my journey as an advocate for justice where we would become one and the same,” Narro said.
A ceremony in Atlanta in November will honor the recipients of this prestigious award, which includes a $25,000 honorarium. Hodges says she is not letting this honor distract her from what’s truly important.
“I love to see my students follow their passion and go out into the world to make a difference as Victor has done. That is its own reward,” Hodges said.
Hodges earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina, a master’s degree from the University of Illinois and completed her law degree at Northwestern University.
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