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Johnson student takes top honors in LBJ library essay contest

Nicholas Dauphine is congratulated by LBJ Library representatives.

Nicholas receives his award, presented by Larry Temple, Chairman of the LBJ Foundation Board of trustees, as his teacher, David Farias, looks on. LBJ Library photo by Lauren Gerson.

Nicholas D. Dauphine, a senior at Johnson High School has won first prize in the LBJ Library “Civil Rights Today” Essay Contest. Dauphine was honored on April 8 at the LBJ Civil Rights Summit awards ceremony in Austin, for his prize-winning essay entitled “Hispanics – The Forgotten Class in Civil Rights History.” The student left the summit with a $2,500 award. Dauphine’s sponsoring teacher, Daniel Farias, received a $1,000 award. Representatives felt it was fitting that a student from a school who's namesake was the First Lady of the United States (Claudia Alta "Lady Bird" Taylor Johnson) during the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson would end up with the top essay. Read the winning essay by clicking this link.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the LBJ Foundation developed an essay contest inviting students throughout Texas to write an essay addressing civil rights as an enduring issue in society and one aspect of the Civil Rights Act that impacts the writer’s life today. The essay contest is sponsored by the LBJ Foundation and the LBJ Presidential Library and co-sponsored by the University of Texas at Austin College of Education and The LBJ School of Public Affairs.

Nicholas sits in LBJ's chair.

Nicholas holds a copy of the President's memoir, The Vantage Point, while sitting in LBJ's chair with teacher, David Farias, standing by.

“We’re pleased to have given high school seniors this opportunity to reflect on the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and to express ways it has affected their lives,” said Amy Barbee, Executive Director of the LBJ Foundation. “The essays were impressive in their content and personal perspectives. Congratulations to the winners and finalists and to their sponsoring teachers.”

This year, 77 students from 30 high schools and home schools throughout Texas submitted essays to the competition.

Dauphine's winning essay was chosen by a distinguished committee of educators and professionals from the Austin community, including Randy Bomer, Professor, Chair, Department of Curriculum & Instruction, College of Education, University of Texas at Austin; Barbara Cline, Archivist, Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library; Dr. Beth Maloch, Associate Professor, Associate Dean for Teacher Education, Student Affairs and Administration, University of Texas at Austin; Jessica Jolliffe, Austin Independent School District, Administrative Supervisor, Social Studies; Noreen Naseem Rodriguez, Doctoral Student, Social Studies Education, University of Texas at Austin; Patrick Patterson, Assistant Vice President for School Partnership, University Outreach, University of Texas at Austin; Dr. Cinthia Salinas, Associate Professor, Social Studies Education, University of Texas at Austin; Amanda Vickery, Doctoral Candidate Social Studies Education, University of Texas at Austin.

To learn more about the contest and the LBJ Presidential Library click here.

Posted on April 21, 2014