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Oct 20, 2022

Wayne Jenkins, Barbara Kennedy-Dixon named ACC UNITE Award Recipients

Full ACC release

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Wayne Jenkins and Barbara Kennedy-Dixon have been named Clemson’s recipients of the 2022 ACC UNITE Award, which was created in 2021 to honor individuals affiliated with the league who have made an impact in the areas of racial and social justice. In addition to being the ACC’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder – man or woman – Kennedy-Dixon served Clemson with distinction for more than 30 years as a coach and administrator prior to her passing in 2018. Jenkins enrolled at Clemson in the Fall of 1969 as a member of the Track & Field team, making him one of the first two African American student-athletes at Clemson, joining Craig Mobley (Basketball) that semester.

Mobley earned the UNITE award in 2021, and it was later confirmed that Jenkins enrolled in the same academic semester. Cookie Blakney, the first women’s athlete of color, was also honored in 2021.

Jenkins was the 1972 ACC Champion in the 600 yards, the program’s first individual ACC Championship by a person of color. He also claimed ACC titles in 1972 and 1973 as part of the mile relay. Jenkins graduated from Clemson in 1973.

Nearly 40 years after she played her final game, Kennedy-Dixon is still the all-time leading scorer in ACC history with 3,113 points. She is one of only two players in Clemson history to be selected to an All-ACC team all four years of her career and she was the first woman to be inducted into the Clemson Ring of Honor in 2000. She served Clemson with distinction as a coach and administrator after her playing days for 31 years, mentoring countless individuals, helping to manage Clemson’s academic success center and serving as Senior Woman Administrator. Sadly, Kennedy died after a long fight against cancer in July 2018 at the age of 58.

About the ACC UNITE Award: 

The UNITE Award is an initiative of the ACC’s Committee for Racial and Social Justice (CORE – Champions of Racial Equity) and was developed and approved by its 15 member institutions.  

The UNITE Award is presented annually to individuals who:

  • Best exemplify ACC CORE’s mission to promote and encourage racial equity and social justice through education, partnerships, engagement and advocacy;
  • Have helped create meaningful, lasting change by improving systems, organizational structures, policies, practices and attitudes;
  • Have been a pioneer and/or helped pave the way for minorities either at the institution or in the community

Clemson ACC UNITE Award Recipients:

  • 2021: Craig Mobley (MBB), Cookie Blakney (WBB)
  • 2022: Wayne Jenkins (MTF), Barbara Kennedy-Dixon (WBB)