Presidential Awards for Community Multicultural Enrichment

2022 PACME recipients pose with their awards. To the right are VCU president Michael Rao and IES VP Aashir Nasim.

Recipients of 2022 PACME Awards

About PACME 

The Presidential Awards for Community Multicultural Enrichment recognizes those VCU and VCU Health individuals and groups who have made exemplary contributions with regard to promoting civility, building community, establishing cross-cultural initiatives, advocating equity, and nurturing a welcoming and inclusively excellent environment throughout the university and area communities.

PACME recipients are honored for their efforts and contributions that move beyond the routine expectations of the individual or group’s position and enhance the goals of inclusive excellence and VCU’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Each award winner will receive $500. In addition, one of the four recipients will be selected to receive the capstone award – The Riese-Melton.  This special award is given for contributions made in advancing cross-cultural relations. The awardee will receive an additional $250.

The Riese-Melton award is a long tradition at VCU and is named for two pathfinders in our institution’s history who dared to reach across the racial divide during less enlightened times.  Dr. Walter J. Riese served as professor of neurology and psychiatry at our medical center.  During his tenure, he championed the rights of African American employees during a time when it was unpopular to take a stand.  One of these employees was Mr. Herman Melton, who worked at the medical center for more than 50 years.  We continue the award because it reminds us of these individuals in our own past who created a culture of diversity that endures to this day.

Award categories

  • Academic and Administrative Leadership Award (includes administrators, directors, and university organizations)
  • Faculty Award (includes teaching, research, and adjunct faculty)
  • Staff Award (includes classified, hourly, and part-time staff, and university and academic professionals)
  • Student Award (includes graduate and undergraduate students, post-docs, and student organizations)

2023 winners

The recipients of the 2023 PACME awards have been selected and will be honored in a public celebration at 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, 2023 in the University Student Commons Commonwealth Ballroom. 

The winners of this year’s awards are: 

  • Alena HamptonPh.D., LCP, academic and administrative leadership award; 
  • Lane Carasik, Ph.D., & Nikki Fernandes, faculty award;
  • Monique Sample, staff award; and 
  • Korinthia (Kori) Nicolai, student award 

The Riese-Melton Award will be presented at the ceremony. 

This year, we will also present the President's Inclusive Excellence Lifetime Achievement Award to Faith Wilkerson, Ed.D.

We encourage you to invite your colleagues, staff, and local community members to attend this important celebration.

Please RSVP to confirm your attendance - RSVP web form. 

Past winners

The 2022 PACME event was held on April 27, 2022. Read all about it in the VCU News article

A listing of previous years' honorees can be found on this list of PACME Recipients from 1994-2022.

For more information on the PACME and to nominate an individual for recognition, see the PACME Nominations page.