Charlotte attorney Julius L. Chambers will be the first recipient of the Diversity Champion Award at the 2008 McMillan Fund Dinner on April 22. The award honors individuals who have demonstrated dedication to the ideals of diversity throughout their legal careers.
In June 1964, Chambers opened his own law practice in Charlotte, which eventually became the first integrated law firm in North Carolina. He successfully argued several landmark cases, including Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education. Chamber carried on his civil rights work despite several attempts on his life, including the bombing of his office, car and home.
Chambers also served as the director counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund after Thurgood Marshall and Jack Greenberg. He also served as chancellor of N.C. Central University and currently serves as executive director of the Center for Civil Rights at UNC-Chapel Hill. He continues to practice civil rights law in Charlotte.