Fine Arts counselor wins diversity award

Elaine Moore, counselor and professor of fine arts, was the recipient of the 10th anniversary John W. Rice Diversity Award, becoming the second leader at EC to win this award since 2004.
“I was honored and it was a humbling experience,” Moore said. “I was so surprised and appreciative because it is such a prestigious award and it inspires me to want to do even more.”
In attendance were former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, California Community Colleges Chancellor Jack Scott, and members of the Board of Governors who were also joined by project success students.
The award, which promotes diversity at community colleges, is named after Rice’s late father who was a former member of the Board of Governors.
“I would like to congratulate the winners from EC; these wonderful programs foster what my father stood for,” Rice said. “My father taught me that you can come from humble beginnings and do great things if you have an education.”
Moore, who has worked as a counselor at the campus for almost 30 years, is one of the founders of the college’s “Project Success” which she has been working on for 23 years.
Project Success is a program that is designated to increase retention, persistence, academic performance and graduation success rates of African American students transitioning into college.
The program has successfully transferred more African American students than any other community college in the state and has become a model for other colleges statewide.
“She has worked extremely hard to maintain and build this program; she put in so many hours, and has been a dedicated leader of the program,” Sue Oda-Omori, transfer coordinator, said.
Former college student and Project Success participant Angie Eke spoke at the Sacramento event about her experience with Moore and how attending a presentation at an after school program helped her get the necessary tools to be successful.
“She is a true advocate of education, her hard work and dedication to students success is insurmountable,” Eke said. “She genuinely cares for her students and really wants them to succeed; she works really hard to make sure that happens.”
While the event was filled with many respected people, Moore had a memorable experience meeting Rice.
“It was wonderful meeting Condoleezza Rice; she’s an open, down to earth person and it was easy having a conversation with her,” Moore said. “I was very pleased to see she was approachable and it was great meeting someone that famous.”
As for the students on campus, Moore said he hopes they never give up and continue to reach for higher education.
“My motto is ‘education is the key to success’ and I want them to know not to give up, be resilient and tenacious,” Moore said. “It’s never too late to be a success.”