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2016 Mohbat Prize winner Keitha-Clemon Duhaney with her parents Franklin and Gardalee, and Mohbat Prize founder Nancy Schuh

Kafilah Muhammad

2014 Mohbat Prize winner Kafilah Ali Muhammad, runners up Cherylin Beckles, Xaria Anderson, and Courtney Small with Nancy Schuh and Prize judge Joanna Underwood

The Joseph E. Mohbat Prize for Writing in Memory of Verdery Knights honors two exceptional individuals who shared a love of writing — Joe Mohbat, Associated Press reporter, who had a gift for language and a passion for the written word, and Verdery Knights, a class leader at Benjamin Banneker Academy in Brooklyn.  Their friendship rested on a shared love for all aspects of the English language.

In celebration of prize-winning investigative journalist Joseph Mohbat, and the young student he inspired, we have established the Mohbat Fund at the Brooklyn Community Foundation. The Fund supports the Mohbat Prize, which is a writing prize awarded to outstanding high school seniors selected from Brooklyn public high schools.

The Mohbat Prize is awarded annually to a deserving Brooklyn public high school senior with a demonstrated writing talent and who might want to pursue writing as a career. A selection committee, comprised of both professional writers and those who use writing extensively in their careers, judge the submissions.

The goal of the Mohbat Prize goal is to provide opportunities for talented, motivated young writers who lack financial resources to express themselves through their writing and be recognized for it. We hope that such recognition will open doors and celebrate students who find joy and purpose in the act of writing.