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Uncle Nearest launches $1.4 million campaign for HBCU scholarships

todayJanuary 18, 2024

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Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey has announced the return of its HBCU Old Fashioned Challenge, a fundraising campaign to provide $1.4 million in scholarships for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Running from January 15th through June 19th, the initiative encourages participation through enjoying an Old Fashioned cocktail at restaurants and bars, purchasing Uncle Nearest whiskey at retail stores, or submitting photos of a homemade Old Fashioned.

The campaign comes from a Department of Education report that 16 states have underfunded HBCUs by nearly $13 billion over the past 30 years. Uncle Nearest seeks to raise awareness and support for these vital institutions, which graduate disproportionate numbers of Black professionals despite making up less than 3% of U.S. colleges.

Participants can trigger $1-2 donations per Old Fashioned order, bottle purchase, or photo submission. The funds will be distributed evenly as one full in-state tuition scholarship at each of the 102 accredited HBCUs.

According to company founder Fawn Weaver, “It’s an honor, and my hope is that we can continue this tradition annually with the checks growing larger as the Uncle Nearest whiskey family expands.” Master Blender Victoria Eady Butler added that the challenge allows Uncle Nearest’s “whiskey family to join us in giving back.”

With over 1,075 awards since its 2017 launch, Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey pays tribute to the world’s first known African American master distiller, Nearest Green. The campaign demonstrates the brand’s commitment to “pulling as we climb” and empowering Black communities.


Written by: Tarik Moody

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