Walt Wolfram of Cary is among six winners of the North Carolina Award, the state’s highest civilian honor.
Wolfram, who was recognized for public service, will be presented with the award Thursday from Gov. Pat McCrory in Durham.
Wolfram is an internationally acclaimed linguist who has transformed the appreciation and understanding of the historical and social importance of North Carolina’s rich language and dialect heritage. Appointed in 1992 as the William C. Friday Distinguished professor at N.C. State University, he founded the N.C. Language and Life Project, which has become a national model for sociolinguistic engagement and the dissemination of knowledge to the public. He continually engages the community through his work creating museum exhibits, appearing at the State Fair, serving as consultant to popular TV shows such as Sesame Street, and creating eight documentaries on the dialects and languages of North Carolina.
The General Assembly created the North Carolina Awards in 1961. They have been presented annually since 1964.