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Steve Lawson, a 1983 Norfolk Academy graduate, received a Community Leaders Award from the Urban League of Hampton Roads at their annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast. 

Mr. Lawson is Chairman of the Board of The Lawson Companies, a real estate firm specializing in development, construction, and management of affordable multifamily housing communities in Virginia. He earned both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Duke University, and has been with the company that his father Bob Lawson started for 30 years.

The Urban League gave Mr. Lawson a housing award for his continued advocating for equitable and affordable housing. He serves on the board of the nonprofit HousingForward Virginia and on the rental advisory council of a statewide housing finance agency. He has promoted affordable housing for more than 20 years, the league said. In 2019, his work earned him a Human Rights Award from Virginia Beach's Human Rights Commission. 

During the breakfast, which was a virtual ceremony, Mr. Lawson thanked his entire Lawson Companies team. His father instilled in him the importance of affordable housing, he said. 

“We are an honest, hard working group who share a strong set of core values and believe in our purpose - to positively impact people," Mr. Lawson said.

While Dr. King's civil rights work is well known, he also championed fair housing, Mr. Lawson said. 

“On this day honoring the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., may we all be inspired to continue the fight for housing equality and racial justice," he said. 

Watch the entire awards ceremony on the Urban League website

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