Dougherty expanding social ideas at banquet

By Taylor Rexrode
Staff Writer

Mission Waco volunteers will celebrate their past year of service to the Waco community on Tuesday.

The Mission Waco Banquet will take place at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Chisholm Hall of the Waco Convention Center.

Dr. Kevin Dougherty, associate professor of sociology, will speak at the banquet about society’s need to “expand the neighborhood.”
“I will talk about the shrinking social circles that most Americans find themselves in today,” Dougherty said. “I will propose solutions on how to expand our ideas on what is the neighborhood. I hope it will be useful in facing the big, social inequalities in our community.”

Mission Waco has served the Waco community for more than 20 years, and according to their website, their mission is to build “relationship-based, holistic programs” to help the poor and encourage Christians to be involved in the poverty discussion.

Dougherty’s research in sociology brings together religion, organizations, innovations and racial-ethnic diversity.

He was named “outstanding professor” at Baylor in 2010 and spoke at Mission Waco’s “No Need Among You” Conference last year. He said he looks forward to speaking to like-minded people at this year’s banquet.

“I write about these things often,” Dougherty said. “But not often do I get to talk to people that really want to make a difference.

I mostly talk to academics, but there will be 1,000 people that are motivated to be there. The opportunity I have to talk to these change-minded individuals is exciting and humbling to me.”

The banquet will recognize notable volunteers and contributors over the past year, including Baylor’s ZetaZiggaZamma group and Brooks Residence Hall.

The event is casual dress and will serve buffet-style food.

A table of 10 guests will cost $425 and corporate community partner tables start at $600. Individual guests may attend for $45.

Today is the last day guests can make reservations for the banquet. Go to to book a table. All proceeds will go toward Mission Waco programs.