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Peace Corps Honors Outstanding African American Community Leader


Marcia M. Pierce received the Peace Corps' Franklin H. Williams Award for 2000. This honor recognizes the outstanding community service of African Americans who have served as Peace Corps Volunteers.

"In naming this award for Franklin Williams, the Peace Corps pays tribute to his remarkable legacy and recognizes the outstanding community work by these distinguished individuals, who carry on his spirit of service," says Peace Corps Deputy Director Charles Baquett, III. Williams, an extraordinary foreign and domestic public servant until his death in 1990, was Peace Corps regional director for Africa, U.S. Ambassador to Ghana, and fulfilled many other significant posts.

The Peace Corps selected one honoree from each of its 11 regional offices. This year, Marcia M. Pierce of People Assisting the Homeless (PATH) was selected for this special award of recognition from candidates in the Southern California and Arizona regions. In her current role, Pierce is the Veteran Coordinator working with veterans to help them establish employment and other needs to become functional in society.

Pierce served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Lesotho, Southern Africa, from 1995-1997. She worked as a small business advisor at a vocational training center for adults with disabilities. In addition, she taught math and English, created a computer lab and taught computer skills to high school and university students.

Pierce also served in the U.S. Army on active duty from 1985-1991 as a cartographer and Army signal officer. She is now a member is the California National Guard where she provides meals and shelter to the needy and the homeless in Los Angeles County. Pierce has a bachelor's degree in business and management from the University of Maryland in Europe. She has recently received her Master's degree in Public Administration this year from California State University, Long Beach.

Today more than 200 African Americans serve as Peace Corps Volunteers around the world. Thousands of African American Volunteers have promoted grassroots development and cross-cultural understanding between Americans and people of developing nations.

Marcia Pierce (Lesotho)

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