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Shootings, homicides and drug arrests are just a few of the times when many young African-Americans are highlighted and featured in the media, while there is a greater majority of positive stories and images often overshadowed by the negative. The New Pittsburgh Courier will honor some of those young individuals doing their part to make their communities better at the annual Fab 40 Reception. The reception, which honors 40 of Pittsburgh’s top African-American men and women under 40, will be held Feb. 24 at the luxurious Fairmont Hotel, Downtown.
“Once again, the New Pittsburgh Courier is pleased to celebrate and honor the accomplishments of 40 of Pittsburgh’s talented and aspiring leaders who are a counterpoint to the negative stereotypes that tarnish the community’s image,” said Rod Doss, editor & publisher of the Courier. “These Fab 40 are the embodiment of determination and dedication to succeed in their field of endeavor. They are today’s promise of a brighter tomorrow.”
Allyce Pinchback, education program manager for the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh and a 2011 Fab 40 honoree, said recognitions like this are important because sometimes there are many people who work behind the scenes and their work goes unnoticed. “It’s wonderful to have a forum where people in our community can be recognized for their work.
Fab 40 honorees come from a wide range of professions, such as health care, business, sports, community, the arts, education, the media and social service.
Pinchback added that the award “shows the community that there are positive role models, especially when we talk about the lack of them, and it shows our youth young African-Americans who are making a difference.”
Highmark Senior Products Specialist Christina Bell is one of this year’s honorees and said, “I am overwhelmed; it’s a great honor to be recognized by the New Pittsburgh Courier.” She added that recognizing young professionals is important “because the recognition we (as a community) give to young leaders inspires others to make a change in their communities.”
Neal Holmes, president of Designing Love Inc. and a past honoree, said, “There is no greater honor than receiving an award from your community. When people in your community invest in you, it says a lot about you.”
While he agrees with Pinchback and Bell that the recognition gives younger generations a role model for work ethic and business, he said it also shows that, “we are the next generation and (we) are ready to stand alongside the present one.” He said his goal is to one day find someone to take his place.
While the Fab 40 recognition is a great display of excellence for generations to come, it is also a motivation for individuals to continue their work and strive for even more. With the acceptance comes responsibility.
Holmes said his advice for the new list of honorees is to continue to challenge themselves and never become satisfied. Always grow and develop relationships.
2012 FAB 40 HONOREES
Principal - Propel Andrew Street High School
Principal Dancer & Founding Member, August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble
Assistant District Attorney, Allegheny County Office of the District Attorney
Senior Products Specialist, Highmark
Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, University Of Pittsburgh
Clinical Director, Bethlehem Haven
Author, Therapist, Motivational Speaker, Musician, Doctoral Student, APA
Minority Fellow– West Virginia University
Chef/Owner, Roxanne's Take-Out & Catering (Soulfood Expressions)
Founder & President, Educating Teens about HIV/AIDS
Child & Family Engagement Specialist - Amachi Pittsburgh
Senior Engineer, Westinghouse Electric & Producer/Host, La Rumba Productions
Civil Engineer II - Tetra Tech NUS
Chairperson, Alliance for Police Accountability and Owner, Arise & Shine Learning Center
Outreach Coordinator, University of Pittsburgh Alzheimer Outreach Center
Programming Director, Kelly Strayhorn Theater
LEAH MICHELE HARDAWAY
Program Director For Learn & Serve America, Rankin Christian Center
Office Manager, African American Chamber Of Commerce of Western PA
Program Supervisor, Prevention Services , FamilyLinks
President, Black Business Association, Carnegie Mellon University
DARRELL S. KINSEL
Murals Program Coordinator & National Social Media Coordinator, Marilyn G. Rabb (MGR) Foundation
Executive Director of Progress, Carnegie Mellon University
Program Director, Small Seeds Development
BERNICE DANA MARTIN
Director Of Development and Marketing, Association for Children & Adults with Learning Disabilities (ACLD)
President & CEO, Mental Health America Allegheny County
Vice President of Programming & Cultivation, August Wilson Center
Assistant to Vice Chancellor for Public Affairs, University of Pittsburgh
Senior Community Initiatives Specialist, Highmark
Manager, GenOn Energy inc., Board Member, Pittsburgh Public Schools
Director of Marketing & Development, Every Child, Inc.
Principal, Ernst & Young, LLP
CEO & Founder, Style & Steel Event Planning
Associate, Meyer, Unkovic & Scott LLP
FRANK TORBERT, III
Director of Admissions, Art Institute Of Pittsburgh On-Line Division
DONALD C. WALKER, III
City Councilman (Aliquippa) & Child Advocate, Western Pennsylvania Psych Care
Parole Officer Supervisor, Allegheny County Adult Probation
Site Manager, NDC Real Estate Management Co.
Author & Co-Founder, verysmartbrothas.com (Blog)
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