Detroit Highlighted During Ambassador Young’s 90th Birthday Celebration

Cornerstone Schools’ co-founder, Clark Durant, was honored in Atlanta, Georgia this weekend for his work surrounding justice in Detroit education during the Millennium Candler Prize Gala. The Millennium Candler Justice Prize honors leadership in effecting positive social change and has previously recognized leaders including Ambassador Andrew Young and Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter.


The gala, hosted as part of civil rights leader Ambassador Andrew Young’s 90th birthday, celebrated the theme of Peace and Reconciliation and coincided with the grand opening of the Millennium Gate Museum’s exhibition: The Many Lives of Andrew Young. The exhibition includes a mural designed by Detroit-based Franco that depicts Ambassador Young’s influence on Cornerstone students and features several Cornerstone alumni.


The celebration is especially important to the Cornerstone community as Young serves as one of, and the only living, Cornerstone namesake. Cornerstone names it’s schools by pairing together significant founding fathers and civil rights leaders as one name including: Jefferson-Douglas, Washington-Parks, Madison-Carver, Lincoln-King and Adams-Young.


“Joining a founder and a civil rights leader together as one name is a masterstroke,” said Ambassador Young. “I am honored to be paired forever with John Adams in the unique naming convention at Cornerstone. He was a great man. The pairing idea reminds us that we are one people.”


Last year Cornerstone launched its Andrew J. Young Cornerstone Center for the Complete Life and marked a major step forward in Durant’s goal of preparing each Cornerstone student to

live the Complete Life, a concept originated by another Cornerstone namesake, Martin Luther King Jr.


“The success of Cornerstone Schools has been thirty years in the making. I’m proud that today, with help from our amazing partners including Ambassador Young, we have made tremendous strides towards preparing the next generation of leaders in Detroit and beyond,” said Clark Durant, co-founder and CEO of Cornerstone Schools. “It was truly an honor to be recognized for Cornerstone’s work during the celebration of my friend, Ambassador Andrew Young.”


Under Durant’s leadership, Cornerstone has formed a mission-minded team dedicated to helping students live their best lives through an excellent education, a foundation of strong character, meaningful relationships and real-world experiences.


In 1990, Cardinal Adam Maida spoke to a group of leaders at the Detroit Economic Club and articulated a vision to “make things new” throughout Detroit education. Durant answered that call in 1991 when Cornerstone opened its doors to 167 students. Today, Cornerstone serves as a model for urban education across the nation, supporting 3,400 children in kindergarten through 12th grade at tuition-free charter schools across five campuses.

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