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barkays 600Boys, girls to take Oath of Abstinence at Pinky Promise annual event

Boys and girls from throughout the Mid-South will participate in the 2nd PROMISE BALL Black Tie Oath Ceremony & Ring Presentation presented by Pinky Promise International on April 13th at 5 p.m. at the Memphis Cook Convention Center.

Middle school and high school participants, grades 6-12, will receive a charge to remain abstinent from sexual and substance abuse behaviors. The formal oath ceremony will conclude with a ring presentation and waltz dance.

Rose Jackson Flenorl, manager of Social Responsibility at FedEx Corporation, is the keynote speaker.



Pinky Promise International, an organization that promotes abstinence, faith and career focused mentorship, was founded by Vicki M. Johnson in 2012 after hearing Dr. Maya Angelou deliver a speech entitled "A Rainbow In My Cloud" at the Memphis Canon Center for the Performing Arts. CEO Johnson will present The Dr. Maya Angelou's Rainbow Award to honorees selected for their commitment "to make a difference in the lives of others."

IMG 6057The 2014 Rainbow Award recipients are Bernal E. Smith II, president/publisher of The New Tri-State Defender, Billy Hicks Jr., CEO and president of Hicks Convention Services and Special Events Inc.; and the Memphis Academy of Health Sciences.

For reservations, visit www.pinkypromiseinternational.org. For more information, call 901-483-4955 or emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Hooks Institute gala to salute Beverly Robertson and the '60's era

The Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change, located at the University of Memphis, will host the Join Hands for Change Gala: The Civil Rights Movement's Influence on Music, Fashion and Culture on April 26th from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. at The Hotel Memphis, 2625 Thousand Oaks Blvd.

Part entertainment and part education, the gala will include music, dancing and dining, as well as multimedia presentations to walk guests through the 1960s. Program participants include Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. and Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell Jr.

The Hooks Institute's honoree for the evening will be Beverly Robertson, president of the National Civil Rights Museum. The setting will be an opportunity for the community to celebrate Robertson's leadership and vision as she ends her tenure as museum president.

The American Civil Rights Movement not only challenged legal segregation and demanded equality, but also contributed to transforming the nation's music, fashion and cultural landscape. Accordingly, guests at the Join Hands for Change Gala are encouraged to don their 1960's best, from dashikis and afros to black leather jackets and berets to peace signs and colorful flower child dresses.

For more information, visit www.memphis.edu/benhooks.

Bridge Builders CHANGE students to present their SCS Student Congress Policy Work in D.C.

Four Bridge Builders Change students will be in Washington, D.C. April 9-12 to serve as presenters at Monumental, the 25th Annual National Service Learning Conference. The CHANGE students will present their youth-led policy work that recently led to the creation of a student congress within Shelby County Schools (SCS).

The conference, convened by the National Youth Leadership Council, brings together youth and adults from across the country and around the world for three and a half days of learning, inspiration, and connection.

The CHANGE students making the trip are: Paris Byrd, senior, Central High School; Corrinne McClure, senior, White Station High School; Bryan Redmond, senior, City University School; Logan Ruthling, senior, Christian Brothers High School.

Bridge Builders CHANGE students began working with other youth oriented organizations on the idea of a student congress in 2011. Their work eventually led the Shelby County Transition Planning Commission (TPC) to include it among recommendations to the unified Shelby County Board of Education.

BRIEFLY: The University of Tennessee Health Science Center's Neuroscience Institute hosts a symposium titled, "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Clinical and Neurobiological Features," from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the UTHSC General Education Building, 8 South Dunlap, Room A204, on April 24th. Keynote speakers: Kerry J. Ressler, MD, PhD, Emory University School of Medicine; Jeffrey J. Bazarian, MD, MPH, University of Rochester Medical Center. The free event is open to the general public, health care workers and researchers. Registration is required. Lunch will be provided. Register at: http://www.uthsc.edu/neuroscience/symposia.php.

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