The HBCU Inaugural Gala Committee is made up of dedicated HBCU alumni, students, and supporters.  We are committed to helping preserve the legacy and prominence of HBCU's by making lawmakers and the public aware of the importance of these great institutions.


Award winning film director and producer, Stacie E. Hawkins graduated with a B.A. in Mass Communications from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) and
attended Howard University.  Having attended these two excellent HBCU's, one private and one public, Ms. Hawkins has had two very different yet empowering educational experiences.  Now an independent filmmaker and owner of the successful film production company, Lavender House Films, Ms. Hawkins attributes her success to the valuable education she received from these Historical institutions.

KIRK SHANNON-BUTTS        Entertainment & Communications Director

Kirk is a talented filmmaker with an MFA. His films (Blueprint, Beneath The Surface,) have screened in international film festivals including Cannes, Sundance, and FESPACO. Kirk has worked in the entertainment industry for over 10 years starting in Public Relations in Los Angeles and working at Rolling Stone magazine, before heading to New York with positions at Vogue, Zink and most recently Glamour magazine. As a Fashion Editor & Stylist, Kirk has worked with First Lady Michelle Obama, Beyonce, Britney Spears, John Legend, Cobra Starship, Drake, and Maxwell.


The HBCU Gala Committee is a small group of like minded individuals who came together for a common cause.  We are not officially linked with any one HBCU and we are not a non-profit or corporation.  Ticket purchases are not tax deductible.