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For Immediate Release: April 12, 2011

Public Meeting for Charles Hamilton Houston Memorial Set for April 21

News Highlights:

  • Proposals for the Charles Hamilton Houston Memorial now on display
  • Public is invited to view the proposals and provide comments
  • Committee seeks donations to fund the project to memorialize the civil rights leader

More Information:

Alexandria Commission for the Arts and the Office of the Arts announce a Public Meeting for the Charles Hamilton Houston Memorial for Thursday, April 21, 7 p.m. at the Charles Houston Recreation Center, 901 Wythe St. 

The four finalist artists/artist teams have submitted their proposals for the Memorial. The final four emerged from a talented pool of nearly 60 applicants from 23 states who responded to a widely promoted “Call to Artists.” The Memorial will be located at the Charles Houston Recreation Center.  Announcement of the winning artist is anticipated in June. 

The finalists for the Charles Hamilton Houston Memorial were chosen as a result of an international “Call for Artists” that generated applications from 59 artists from 23 different states.

The finalists are:

  • Team of Jennifer Andrews and Gregg LeFevre, New York, New York
  • Christopher Erney, Alexandria, Virginia
  • Team of Robert Firmin and Eugene Daub, Kensington, California
  • Preston Jackson, Dunlap, Illinois

The proposals are now on display as follows:

  • April 2 – May 1: Charles Houston Recreation Center, 901 Wythe St.
  • May 2 – May 16: City Hall, 301 King St.

The public is invited to record comments in the notebook provided at the display location, or e-mail comments to The Selection Panel and Stakeholder Advisory Group will consider the public comments during the selection process.  The recommendation for the winning artist will be voted on by the Alexandria Commission for the Arts and City Council. 

Charles Hamilton Houston was a nationally-known civil rights leader and NAACP attorney who fought for equality in public education.  He became involved with Alexandria in 1941, when a group of concerned citizens petitioned for a new school and eventually appealed to the NAACP for assistance.  Houston took on this challenge and used his knowledge and influence to aid the community in their fight.  Their efforts were successful and a new Parker-Gray High School was built in 1950.  The memorial will represent, honor and memorialize Charles Hamilton Houston and preserve the story of the city’s fight for equality in education, highlighting the history of Parker-Gray High School. 

A committee of Alexandria residents has been established to raise the funds for this project, in the amount of $300,000, through grants and private donations.  To contribute to the Memorial, please contact: Alisa Carrel, Director of the Office of the Arts, at or 703.746.5590.

For more information, contact Alisa Carrel, Director of the Office of the Arts, at 703.746.5590 or e-mail