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West Chester University Alums Honored for Impact On Their Communities

As part of the University's celebration of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., two West Chester alumni are being presented with "Drum Major for Justice" awards during a commemorative brunch on Thursday, Jan. 31 in the Sykes Student Union building on Rosedale Ave.

Diane Horsey, a 1975 West Chester graduate and 2012 Chester County Sports Hall of Fame inductee, and Daryl C. Howard, a 1994 graduate of the University and founder of the Howard Urban Education Initiatives in Laurel, Md., are being honored for their exemplary service to students and their communities.

The term, "drum major for justice" originated in a sermon by Dr. King in which he raised several themes, including love and seeking greatness through service. He said that he wished to be remembered as a "drum major." "Say that I was a drum major for justice…a drum major for peace…a drum major for righteousness. I just want to leave a committed life behind."

Proceeds from the brunch ticket sales support the University's Frederick Douglass Society Scholarship Fund, named in honor of the former slave, distinguished author, and statesman, who gave his last public lecture on West Chester's campus on February 01, 1895.

Retired in 2011, Diane Horsey taught physical education and coached in the West Chester Area School District for nearly 36 years. Her coaching career, which began in 1977, culminated in 11 seasons of coaching lacrosse and 27 seasons in field hockey at West Chester East High School with winning percentages of .703 and .650, respectively. Her lacrosse team won the state title in 1985, just one year after her appointment as head coach. In 1989 and 1990, the team won back-to-back District I titles.

In field hockey, her teams won nine Chester-Montgomery County crowns and four District I titles, and she was selected "Coach of the Year" nine times. A highly regarded classroom teacher as well, Horsey oversaw many West Chester University education majors during their student teacher experience.

Horsey and her sisters sing for various charitable groups and organizations, as well as for the Inspirational Choir at St. Paul's Baptist Church in West Chester.

Daryl Howard, a 1994 graduate of West Chester University, has spent his career helping underserved students develop personal and career goals. He founded and heads the Howard Urban Education Initiatives, a non-profit organization that offers quality educational and cultural programming to underserved communities. Its flagship program, the "Young Man Camp," is a summer enrichment program for teenage males matriculating to high school.

Howard also co-organizes "Male Achievers," a monthly seminar similar to "Young Man Camp" for young men. Through counseling, teaching and organizing, he has initiated a wide variety of programs linking public schools, college communities and workplace professionals to broaden the exposure of the underserved.

As an advocate for education and sociocultural enlightenment, Howard serves as a counselor educator in Montgomery County, Maryland, and is an adjunct professor in sociology at Prince George's Community College in Largo, Md.

In addition to the brunch and awards ceremony, the University is sponsoring a commemorative poster contest with local high schools, a performance by the University's gospel choir, a soul food dinner and a free evening screening of the 2012 film, Red Tails, about the Tuskegee Airmen.

Click for more information about WCU's 20th Anniversary Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.