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Tireless Advocate for the Homeless is Named Schweitzer Honors Scholar

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Katrina R. Knight, whose work with homeless residents has helped transform countless lives, was recognized Nov. 19 as an Albert Schweitzer Honors Scholar. The Honors Scholars College and Randall Library at the University of North Carolina Wilmington award this annual honor to a person from the Cape Fear area who exemplifies the attributes or interests of Albert Schweitzer. Each scholar delivers a lecture at the freshman honors seminar and is recognized for his or her contributions at the annual ceremony and reception.

Since 2004, Knight has been executive director of the Good Shepherd Center in Wilmington, a nonprofit dedicated to feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless and facilitating a transition to permanent housing.

“Katrina Knight has helped many people make a new start,” said Kate Bruce, director of the Honors College and a professor of psychology at UNCW. “She has worked with other agencies to create a support network to help clients move out of homelessness while continuing to meet the basic needs of those who seek food and shelter. Her compassion and dedication have had a profound impact on the people her organization serves and on the Wilmington community.”

Knight moved to Wilmington to take the director’s job at Good Shepherd job after completing a Master of Social Work degree from Washington University in St. Louis. She oversees the center’s programs, which include a soup kitchen, day and overnight shelters, a medical clinic and a transitional living center for homeless veterans. She is on the advisory board of the Cape Fear region’s 10-year Plan to End Homelessness and served three years on the board of the N.C. Coalition to End Homelessness.

Thousands of people in the Wilmington area have benefited from the Good Shepherd Center’s programs. Hundreds of UNCW students have contributed their time and talents to the center and have learned firsthand about its contribution to the community. Knight is being honored for exemplifying Schweitzer’s philosophy of “reverence for life.”

The Albert Schweitzer Honors Scholars program is the legacy of the Albert Schweitzer International Prizes. From 1973 to 1993, the prizes were awarded on the UNCW campus to recognize people who contributed significantly in the areas of medicine, the humanities, music and humanitarian efforts – areas where Schweitzer excelled.

-- Tricia Vance

#Honors College

#Randall Library