Norfolk Historical Society’s Tucker-Guy Scholastic Award was established in 2018 to honor the memories of historian and author, George Holbert Tucker (1909-2005), and former Norfolk Historical Society President, Louis Lee Guy Jr. (1938-2014). Both were Norfolk natives. Tucker kept our local history alive through the publication of nine books and more than 2,500 historical pieces in the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot newspaper over the course of more than 50 years. He was an internationally acclaimed literary scholar, recognized as an authority on the life and works of Jane Austen.
Guy enjoyed a 40-year career as a professional engineer before retiring in 1999 as Director of Norfolk’s Department of Utilities. His passion for history led him to serve as president of Norfolk Historical Society and advocate for Citizens for a Fort Monroe National Park. He served on the Heritage Committee of Norfolk’s Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church, and gave lively and informed tours of Fort Monroe, Fort Norfolk and Saint Paul’s Church. His op-ed pieces appeared regularly in the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot. He was instrumental in establishing Norfolk Historical Society’s monthly lecture series in 2007. The series was renamed in his honor after his death in 2014.
Norfolk Historical Society’s Tucker-Guy Scholastic Award preserves the legacy of George Tucker and Louis Guy by supporting a new generation of historians. It is awarded annually to an undergraduate history major at each of Norfolk’s three universities – Norfolk State, Old Dominion and Virginia Wesleyan. Recipients of the award for 2021 are:
Norfolk State University:
Kindred Dakota is the Norfolk State University beneficiary of Norfolk Historical Society’s 2021 Tucker-Guy Scholastic Award. Ms. Dakota holds a strong GPA. She is preparing teach history at the high school level, where she will help to instill a love of history into her students and to mentor future historians. This semester, she is tutoring NSU students to help them prepare for one of the more challenging history courses at the university.
Old Dominion University
ODU chose to split the award between two students:
In selecting Brieanna Bullaro as one of the two ODU recipients, the University cites her paper "The Impact of Religion on the Eradication of Leprosy." Leprosy is a disease that has stood the test of time. With an astounding rate of immunity worldwide, and the availability of therapy that can both prevent and cure the disease, the question stands: why has it not been eradicated? This paper examines the definition, history, treatment and changing social perception of leprosy. The paper will conclude by hypothesizing that the stigma attached to the disease via historic religious texts has prevented the eradication of leprosy.
ODU’s second recipient, Alexandra Arnold, is cited for her paper "Italy in the Early 20th Century: Establishing the Fascist Religion." In the late 19th century, the ideological and literary movement known as Risorgimento swept across Italy. Meaning "rise again," it was a call for Italian unification and the establishment of a national consciousness. This successful movement allowed Italy to unite its territories, finally establishing a sovereign state in 1870. Although Italy could claim victory after World War I, her political system was divided and becoming increasingly hostile. The liberal monarchy was no longer what the people wanted for Italy, and many political movements and leaders emerged. Benito Mussolini saw this as an opportunity to introduce fascism to the nation, but he knew he needed more than just a political party at his back. He recognized the need for a new national consciousness, and Fascism's ambiguous structure allowed him to mold its political ideology to fit the needs of the Italian people. Not only did Fascism take hold in the government, but it began to sacralize symbols of the state establishing itself as the new national religion.
Virginia Wesleyan University:
Jenna Whitener is a History major and Honors student at Virginia Wesleyan University. She asks incisive questions and offers keen insights that elevate every seminar in which she participates. She has a 3.965 grade point average, and double majors in History and English with minors in Psychology and Women and Gender Studies. She is adept at synthesizing information and skills across courses and beyond disciplines. Jenna has been on the President’s List three times, and the Dean’s List three times. She was inducted into Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society on 15 October 2020 and is additionally a member of four other honor societies. Jenna is an astute thinker, resourceful researcher and a talented and hardworking writer. Ms. Whitener is the captain of the VWU Varsity Field Hockey team. When Jenna graduates in May 2021, she will become an alumna of which the History Department is particularly proud.