William Kornblum Award Statement
The Distinguished Career Award for the Practice of Sociology is presented each year in recognition of outstanding contributions to sociological practice. The award recognizes work that has facilitated or served as a model for the work of others, work that has significantly advanced the utility of one or more specialty areas in sociology and, by so doing, has elevated the professional status or public image of the field as a whole, or work that has been honored or widely recognized outside the discipline for its significant impacts, particularly in advancing human welfare. The selection committee selected William Kornblum as the 2005 recipient of the Practice award.
William Kornblum has spent more than thirty years at the City University of New York, applying his sociological insights to community and labor issues. In reports prepared for the general public rather than academic specialists, Kornblum has examined New Yorkers' relationship to Central Park; the "bright lights" of West 42nd Street; Harlem teenagers' life aspirations and struggles; and, more recently, the effects of the 9/11 terrorist attack on airline workers. Since 1997, he has chaired the board of the Grand Central Neighborhood Agency, an agency serving the homeless in midtown Manhattan. Kornblum's multi-faceted work that uses sociology to tackle urban problems has over the years influenced hundreds of his students to become similarly engaged in their communities.