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TO RECOGNIZE AND HONOR THE LIFE AND ACHIEVEMENTS OF HARVEY B. GANTT, THE FIRST AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDENT TO ATTEND A PREVIOUSLY ALL WHITE INSTITUTION OF HIGHER LEARNING IN SOUTH CAROLINA WHEN HE WAS ADMITTED TO CLEMSON UNIVERSITY IN 1963.
Whereas, born in Charleston in 1943, Mr. Gantt was educated in the city's public school system, graduating second in his class from Burke High School. He attended Iowa State University on a merit scholarship, and in 1961, he applied to Clemson University and was admitted under court order; and
Whereas, in 1965, he graduated with honors with a bachelor's degree in architecture, and he earned a master's degree in city planning from the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1970; and
Whereas, in 1971, Mr. Gantt and Jeff Huberman co-founded Gantt Huberman Architects, an architectural firm in Charlotte, North Carolina. The firm experienced tremendous growth under their leadership and became an award-winning design organization; and
Whereas, dedicated to his community, he served more than three terms on the Charlotte City Council during the late 1970s and served as mayor pro tem of the city in 1981 and 1983. Mr. Gantt became the first African American elected to serve as mayor of the city of Charlotte, an office he held for two terms. During his tenure, the city of Charlotte experienced one of its greatest periods of prosperity: more than twenty-one thousand new jobs were created, and investments reached more than a million dollars; and
Whereas, in 1990, he ran for national office, contesting Jesse Helms in the North Carolina United States Senate race as a Democrat, a bid that exemplified his belief that no challenge is too great. Although Mr. Gantt lost the election, he won national acclaim and respect for positions he took on education, health care, and the environment in the much-publicized and controversial campaign; and
Whereas, he remains active in politics, serving on the North Carolina Executive Council and on the Democratic National Committee. With more than 15 years of service to the public, he remains an active participant in dozens of civic, cultural, and professional organizations, and he devotes time to speaking and lecturing nationwide at colleges and universities on current architectural and political issues; and
Whereas, in 1986, Mr. Gantt was made a fellow in the American Institute of Architects, the highest honor granted to a practicing architect. His numerous awards and honors include honorary doctoral degrees from six colleges and universities; and
Whereas, the South Carolina House of Representatives values the esteem and recognition that Harvey Gantt has brought to the Palmetto State during his life spent breaking new ground, supported by his personal formula for success: "Successful people have a strong sense of their own self-worth, and that sense of self-esteem is the foundation on which they reach out and move forward." Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives:
That the members of the South Carolina House of Representatives, by this resolution, recognize and honor the life and achievements of Harvey B. Gantt, the first African American student to attend a previously all-white institution of higher learning in South Carolina when he was admitted to Clemson University in 1963.
Be it further resolved that a copy of this resolution be presented to Harvey B. Gantt.
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