MUSICAL LEADERS—Leah Baker Fowler, front, a young entrepreneur featured in Generation NEXT, receives a proclamation, a resolution and well wishes from Mary Esther VanShura, Allegheny County director of community affairs, representing Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. At left, Michele Rone Cooper, executive director, McAuley Ministries and Sister Patricia McCann, chairperson of McAuley Ministries Board of Directors. At right, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. (Photos by Micaela Young, courtesy of McAuley Ministries).

MUSICAL LEADERS—Leah Baker Fowler, front, a young entrepreneur featured in Generation NEXT, receives a proclamation, a resolution and well wishes from Mary Esther VanShura, Allegheny County director of community affairs, representing Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. At left, Michele Rone Cooper, executive director, McAuley Ministries and Sister Patricia McCann, chairperson of McAuley Ministries Board of Directors. At right, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. (Photos by Micaela Young, courtesy of McAuley Ministries).

A Celebration was held on Wednesday, June 15, at the Hill House Association, Hillman Auditorium, recognizing the first 14 Generation NEXT Candidates.  Co-sponsors of this event were McAuley Ministries, BMe Community, and Mayor William Peduto as part of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative.

Mayor Peduto was on hand to read the proclamation from the City, shared his encouragement and congratulations to the honorees, and proclaimed Wednesday, June 15, 2016, Generation NEXT Day in the City of Pittsburgh.

MAKING FRIENDS—Talking after the program are Generation NEXT honorees Robert Rose-Thompson, Raynard Lucas, and Kai Roberts—all of whom have an interest in music. Rose-Thompson and Lucas’ band, Ink, performed at the event.

MAKING FRIENDS—Talking after the program are Generation NEXT honorees Robert Rose-Thompson, Raynard Lucas, and Kai Roberts—all of whom have an interest in music. Rose-Thompson and Lucas’ band, Ink, performed at the event.

McAuley Ministries, Pittsburgh Mercy’s grant-making foundation, embarked on this exciting initiative in early 2015 in an effort to help change the narrative and perception of how the Pittsburgh region views its African-American youth. They established a partnership with the New Pittsburgh Courier to tell the stories of Generation NEXT – African American youth, ages 11-22,  who are achieving in the classroom, volunteering in their community, starting businesses and coming entrepreneurs, creating art, and advocating for social justice.

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