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Celebrating the leadership, vision, tenacity, and love of community shared by the recipients of the Great Living Cincinnatian Award, presented annually by the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber since 1967.
Dr. Milton W. Hinton, the retired president of the NAACP’s Cincinnati chapter, grew up in Glassboro, New Jersey, attending segregated schools and watching movies from theater balconies – the only seats available to blacks. Little did he know at the time he would go on to influence the big picture of race relations.
Dr. Hinton earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Glassboro State College and added a doctorate in education from Columbia University.
He taught in Philadelphia and Glassboro public schools before joining Virginia State University as head of the Department of Special Education. In 1970, he moved to the University of Cincinnati, where he was professor and then department head before retiring vice provost in 1992.
While in New Jersey, he served as president of the Glassboro Branch of the NAACP for five years, and an additional eight as president of the organization’s expanded Glouchester County branch.
In 1994, he was elected president of the Cincinnati chapter, a job he planned to keep for just two years. However, he completed his third term before retiring on December 31, 2000.
“I think (my most enduring contribution is) the revival of the local NAACP branch, not only because of the impact it has had – but that it will continue to have,” Dr. Hinton said. “It has an impact on far more people than I could have reached as individual.”
Dr. Hinton was proud of the organization’s growing Youth Council, the establishment of a college chapter at the University of Cincinnati, and more young people serving in leadership roles.
Under Dr. Hinton’s leadership, local NAACP membership climbed from some 700 to 3,5000, as he helped guide the creation of a Citizens Police Review Panel and championed minority involvement in rebuilding the riverfront. He also energized dormant committees; assisted people with workplace, housing and school concerns; attracted more white members to the organization; and pushed for voter registration among African-Americans.
His honors include establishment of the annual Dr. Milton W. Hinton Scholarship for minority students at U.C.; the Dr. Milton W. Hinton Graduate Minority Fellows and Scholars Award; the Southern Poverty Law Center Award; the Tangeman Award, and the Dr. Milton W. Hinton Future Leaders Scholarship Fund.
Dr. Hinton and his wife, Betti, live in North Avondale.
Recipients are selected from candidates by the Cincinnati Chamber’s senior council based on the following criteria: – Community service – Business and civic attainment on a local, state and national or international level – Leadership – Awareness of the needs of others – Distinctive accomplishments that have brought favorable attention to their community, institution or organization