UP, UP AND AWAY—Marilyn McCoo-Davis


Up, Up and Away was the theme and the sound track for the Workforce Development Global Alliance’s (WDGA) Eighth Annual 2STEPS2WORK Benefit Mini-Concert & Festival.

On Oct. 2, at the LeMont Restaurant guests enjoyed an African extravaganza, dinner and entertainment by the legendary, Grammy award winner Marilyn McCoo-Davis.  WDGA was founded in 2006 and their mission is to promote economic self-sufficiency through peace and employability of disadvantaged youth. The 2STEPS2WORK program equips youth to resolve conflict (get along)—Step 1 and provide the career development skills to become employable (Get Ahead)—Step 2.



WELCOME—Randy Hayes, Lynne Hayes–Freeland and Niecy Dennis



VOLUNTEERS—Carolyn Simpson, Loise Williams and Darlene Patterson (Photos by Debbie Norrell)


Niecy Dennis, WDGA founder and president says, “this year has been a year of transition as we establish WDGA-Kenya and the Youth Leadership council to lead, own and manage our 2STEPS2WORK program on the ground. Strategically it will be the youth that reproduce the model program in other parts of Africa.”

This year WDGA presented their Humanitarian Award to Robert Agbede for his lifetime of visionary leadership and steady unwavering devotion to the support and inspiration of others—locally, nationally and internationally. The ever popular Lynne Hayes-Freeland, of KDKA-TV, served as mistress of ceremonies and Vince Sims, of WPXI, was a lively auctioneer. Bill Flanagan, executive vice president, The Allegheny Conference on Community Development was on hand to present the Humanitarian Award to Agbede.

The WDGA program always features exciting silent auction items and live auction treats. This year the Rev. James Hunt and wife, Sheila, were the high bidders on the Thanksgiving trip to Orlando, Fla. The beautiful evening ended with a mini concert featuring McCoo-Davis. “Wedding Bell Blues,” “One Last Bell to Answer” and the “Age of Aquarius” were included on her play list.  

Dennis thanked event chair: Yvette Furlonge; co-chair Darlene Patterson; program chairs Ambassador Dan & Libby Simpson; and a huge thanks to her mother Reverend Claudette Dennis.




AUCTION WINNERS—Dr. Sheila Hunt and Rev. Dr. James Hunt




CONGRATULATIONS—William Carl and Robert Agbede, the chairman CEO and president of Chester Engineers.

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