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Dear Supporters of the Movement:

March 22, 2013

We thank you for supporting the 2013 Whitney M. Young Awards Gala. This year’s honorees, Eric Watson, Herb and Felicia Gray, and Congressman Mel Watt are four individuals who exemplify our community’s desire for inclusion and change. Because of them and businesses and individuals like you, we continue to promote “Jobs, Education, and Financial Stability!” Over the past five years we have moved forward with a strategic plan and vision that has lifted our customers to higher ground with your support.


Our workforce program graduates have earned over $50 million in salaries and income the past five years. The people we serve have above a 96% pass rate on all national certification exams in Broadband and Fiber Optics, Heating Ventilation and Air-Conditioning (HVAC), Microsoft Specialist, and Customer Service.


We have 11 after-school Linking Youth to Technology sites and over 91% of our participants experience grade gains. We offer national certifications in Leadership, CISCO networking, and Broadband and Fiber Optics to high school students to ensure they develop 21st century skills and get introduced to real Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.


Our participants receive Financial Literacy training in partnership with our large banking partners to ensure they not only earn a wage, but manage those wages. We are launching the Bank of the Urban League of Central Carolinas to help get under and non-banked customers mainstream bankable for a better community.


It is because of you, we are doing bigger and greater things for our community. Our new Entrepreneurial Academy in collaboration with City Start Up Labs for those thirty and under begins this spring. Our merger with partner, Jacob’s Ladder will give out community a greater continuum of care for the unemployed and displaced workers. Two-thirds of our programs are supported by the private dollars we raise. Your support of the Whitney M. Young Gala Awards allows us to continue the tradition of empowering people and changing lives! Thank you for being part of the Movement that is the Urban League.

Chris Payton

Dr. Patrick C. Graham

Board Chair

President and CEO

2013 Whitney M. Young, Jr. Awards Programme Reception / Networking Gala Opening “Whitney M .Young Jr.” Welcome Steve Crump, Host Remarks Chris Payton, Chairman, Board of Directors Acknowledgements Kaniche Cezar, Vice-Chair, Board of Directors


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young, Jr. Awards Programme (cont.) Awards Presentations 2013 Whitney M. Young, Jr. Award Recipient Herb & Felicia Gray Presented by Aaron Galloway

2013 Whitney M. Young, Jr. Award Recipient Eric Watson Presented by Daniel Agnew

2013 Whitney M. Young, Jr. Award Recipient Congressman Melvin Watt Presented by Angelia Carter

Who We Serve Customer Testimonials Introduction of Dr Patrick Graham: Rahman Khan Address & Special Presentation: Dr Patrick C. Graham, President and CEO Education + Training + Placement


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

Steve Crump Host

News Reporter at WBTV Education: Bachelor of Arts in Communications, Eastern Kentucky University Career: Reporter/Anchor for WKYT-TV, Lexington, KY; Reporter/Anchor for WFTV-TV, Orlando, FL; Reporter/Anchor for WSAV-TV, Savannah, GA; Reporter/Host, Public Affairs program, WJBK, Detroit, MI; Free-lance correspondent with Black Entertainment Television (BET) ; Independent documentary Producer for WTVI, Charlotte, NC Honors: Several Regional Emmy Awards, Four National Headliner Awards, National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence, NAACP Legal Defense Fund Humanitarian of the Year, and the National Council of Negro Women “Man of the Year”, Charlotte Chapters. Independent Documentary Producer for Charlotte Public Television WTVI. Honors include unsung hero Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame. Independent Producer for WFAE Public radio winner of a regional Edward R. Murrow Award, Green Eyeshade, National Sigma Delta Chi Public Service Award, Carolinas RTNDA Award, and national RTNDA Unity Award all for the community radio “Trust Matters”. Documentaries have been showcased by the Smithsonian and recognized by the Library of Congress and the Museum of Broadcast Communications, as well as several regional and national film festivals. He’s been recognized as “The Distinguished Achiever of the Year”, Louisville Chestnut Street YMCA Black Achievers Program...also, “Man of the Year” from the National Council of Negro Women and “Humanitarian of the Year” from the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund, Charlotte chapters.

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


Herb & Felicia Gray Philanthropists and Community leaders Charlotte Businessman Herb Gray cares a lot about his community. A philanthropist, community leader and change agent, Gray currently serves as CEO of Life Enhancement Services. A graduate of North Carolina A&T State University, Gray earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1990. Shortly after obtaining his degree, he began his career by accepting a job in property management with H.J. Russell & Company. The Atlanta-based company is the single largest Minority Business Enterprise real estate firm in the nation. Gray’s stint with Russell & Company and other well-known companies such as GMAC and Verizon whet his appetite for business ownership while simultaneously expanding his vision for future endeavors. As a result, Gray founded Life Enhancement Services (LES) in 2005. LES is a nationally accredited provider of quality case management services to clients with mental and behavioral health disorders. LES now operates in several locations: Atlanta, Georgia, Las Vegas, Nevada, Washington, DC and Houston, Texas (www. As a philanthropist, Herb’s giving is broad and comprehensive. The Gray Golf Classic (, an annual golf tournament supports 100 Black Men of Greater Charlotte, Inc. and other local charitable organizations, is a prime example of how Gray gives back. Over the past four years, this program has grown tremendously with sold out attendance over the last two years. Gray also supports Project L.I.F.T. (Leadership and Investment for Transformation), an initiative charged to address educational issues for students living in the West Charlotte corridor. In fact, Gray recently hosted two fundraisers for Project L.I.F.T. In addition, Gray and his wife host an annual Holiday “Party With a Purpose” in which they raise funds for various organizations. In 2012, the event raised funds for the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture (


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

Gray sits on several local boards including the Urban League of the Central Carolinas (Chair- 2012 Whitney M Young Awards), the Board of Visitors at Johnson C. Smith University, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, the Harris YMCA Board of Directors, the Chris Canty Foundation, the North Carolina A&T Advisory Board, Opera Carolina and the Livingstone College Board of Directors. Gray is married to Felicia Walton, who is an executive at Bank of America. In his “rare” spare time he enjoys reading, golfing and attending cultural events throughout the city. Herb is so heavily involved and gives freely to the community he loves because he strongly believes in the adage he learned from his parents: “To Whom Much is Given Much is Required.”

Felicia Walton Gray has worked in the Information Technology field for 20 years. She is currently an IT Testing Manager for Bank of America Corporation, where she manages end to end system integration testing of Consumer and Small Business Banking initiatives. At Bank of America, she has held previous roles as a test environments manager, business continuity consultant and process designer. Prior to coming to Bank of America, she worked for Duke Energy for 12 years as an application developer and production support analyst. Felicia graduated from Johnson C. Smith University in 1992 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics with a minor in computer science. In addition to being in the IT profession, she is also works part time as a certified fitness instructor specializing in cardio performance and kickboxing classes. She teaches for Blast Fitness and the YMCA’s of Greater Charlotte. Felicia is married o Herb Gray. She and her husband are philanthropists in the Charlotte community. They are founders of the Gray Classic Golf Tournament Weekend; an annual golf tournament and weekend of events that supports 100 Black Men of Greater Charlotte, Inc. and other local charitable organizations. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, shopping and working with her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


Eric Watson Vice President, Diversity & Inclusion, Delhaize America Eric Watson is Vice President of the Office of Diversity & Inclusion for Delhaize America, which comprises the Food Lion Family of Banners (Food Lion, Harveys, Reid’s), Bottom Dollar Food, Hannaford Brothers, and Sweetbay Supermarkets. He is responsible for the development and implementation of Delhaize America’s diversity and inclusion business strategy. He is also responsible for leadership and associate development, and measuring progress in the areas of culture and environment, diverse supplier development, minority recruitment and retention, education and training, and assisting in growing and sustaining a diverse market presence. In October 2003, Watson joined Food Lion as Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion. From 2007 through 2009, he also served on Food Lion’s Executive Committee and led the Talent Acquisition department. In February 2010, he became Vice President of the Office of Diversity & Inclusion for Delhaize America. Watson has 29 years of experience in operations management, including more than 18 years in the field of diversity. Watson has developed strategies to impact business success by creating a vision to manage diversity, designing leadership mentoring programs to promote diversity and establishing an accountability system for business diversity. In his prior experience, he held the position of Executive Director of Diversity and Workforce Capability at the Williams Companies Inc., and was Vice President of Global Diversity for the St. Paul Companies Inc. Watson has been a keynote speaker, participated on panels, and given lectures on diversity recruiting and talent acquisition, mentoring, diversity and inclusion business case and strategy, cultural competence, African Americans and Hispanics in the workplace, and supplier diversity.


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

He has received the following recognitions for his community and diversity & inclusion work: Corporate Diversity Champion Award from Pride Communications, Thurgood Marshall College Fund-Award of Excellence, Kappas of Charlotte-Man of the Year Award, Diversity & Inclusion Champion Award from The Diversity Forum, National Council of Negro Women – Brotherhood Award, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Middle Eastern Province Man of the Year Award, induction into Livingstone College’s Leaders’ Hall of Fame, La Noticia Excelente Award for Non-Latin Person Most Supportive of the Latino Community, Uptown Media Group’s Charlotte Catalyst Award, the Next Generation Network – Paula Banks Award, Savoy Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America, Uptown Professional Magazine’s Top 100 Executives in America, Charlotte NAACP Corporate Achiever Award and Award for Leadership and Support from the Carolinas Asian-American Chamber of Commerce. Watson currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC), and the Next Generation Network (NGN). He serves on the Board of Directors of the University of North Carolina-Center for International Understanding, and the Urban League of Central Carolinas in Charlotte. He is the Board Chair of The Diversity Forum in Charlotte, NC. He is a member of the Board of Visitors and the Corporate Alliance Program at Johnson C. Smith University, the Board of Visitors at Livingstone College, the Leadership Team of the Community Building Initiative (CBI), the North Carolina NAACP Youth & College Division Advisory Board, Board of Directors of The Park in Charlotte, NC, Lead Partner of the UNC-Chapel Hill – Diversity & Multicultural Affairs Corporate Advisory Partners Group, a member of 100 Black Men of America – Greater Charlotte Chapter, and a member of the Charlotte Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. Watson holds a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Livingstone College in Salisbury, N.C.

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


Congressman Melvin Watt U.S. House of Representatives, North Carolina’s 12th district Melvin L. Watt (“Mel”) was born in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina on August 26, 1945. He is a graduate of York Road High School in Charlotte. He was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1967 with a BS degree in Business Administration and was the president of the business honors fraternity as a result of having the highest academic average in the Business School. In 1970 he received a JD degree from Yale University Law School and was a published member of the Yale Law Journal. He has been awarded honorary degrees from North Carolina A&T State University, Johnson C. Smith University, Bennett College and Fisk University. Mel practiced law from 1970-1992, specializing in minority business and economic development law in a general practice law firm best known for its civil rights reputation. He has been an owner of several small businesses. Mel was the campaign manager of Harvey Gantt’s campaigns for City Council, for Mayor of Charlotte and for the United States Senate. Mel served one term in the North Carolina Senate (1985-86) where he was called “the conscience of the Senate.” He did not seek a second term in the state Senate and announced that he would not consider running for elective office again until his children completed high school. Mel is married to Eulada Paysour Watt, an educator. They have two sons, Brian and Jason, both of whom are graduates of Yale University and have earned graduate degrees. Mel is a member of the Mt. Olive Presbyterian Church and a life member of the NAACP. He served as president of the Mecklenburg County Bar and has been a member of many professional, community and civic boards and organizations.


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

In 1992, Mel was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from North Carolina’s 12th Congressional District and became one of only two African American members elected to Congress from North Carolina in the 20th century. Mel is a member of the House Judiciary Committee, on which he is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition and the Internet. Mel is also on the House Financial Services Committee, on which he serves on the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises and the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit. Mel was unanimously elected and served as the Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus (2005-2006). Mel enjoys tennis, running, reading and music. Before retiring from the Democratic baseball team in 2008, Mel was the starting pitcher for the Democratic baseball team in the annual Congressional Baseball Game and was named most valuable player in 1995, 1996 and 2000.

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |



2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


Acknowledgements The Urban League of Central Carolinas wishes to thank the following sponsors and supporters: Enterprise Holdings Inc


Carolinas Healthcare Systems

Duke Energy

Coca Cola Bottling Company Consolidated


Food Lion/Delhaize Herb & Felicia Gray Fifth Third Bank Wells Fargo

Urban League of Central Carolinas Harris YMCA YMCA

Rodgers Builders

Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department

American EMO Trans

Solomon T. Franklin


Steve Crump

Bank of America

Lake Norman Awards


Jason Perry

Time Warner Cable

Natalie Cates

100 Black Men of Greater Charlotte, Inc.

DJ Moe


City of Charlotte

Jon Strayhorn Copy Shop

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

Sponsors Title Sponsor Empowerment Sponsor Investor Sponsors

Training Sponsors

Education Sponsors

Community Sponsors

2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


2013 Board of Directors Chairman of the Board Chris Payton

Board of Directors Kaniche Cezar Russell V. Traw Deanita McCall Reginald Bean MaePaul Boone Jack Cobb Michael Cureton Jada Grandy Herb Gray Kevin Hyrams Rodney Moore Karen Morgan Kyle Price Carranza Pryor Jeane’ Robinson Lissiah Taylor Hundley Nick Wharton


2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |

Urban League of Central Carolinas 740 W. 5th Street, Charlotte, NC 28202 | (704) 373-2256

Staff Dr. Patrick C. Graham, President and CEO Carol Bates, Job Developer Angelia Carter, Front Desk Administrator Tammie Cook, Counselor Advocate Shelia Funderburke, SVP of Programs Takisha Jones, Administrative Assistant Nannie Long, SVP Finance Shannon McKnight, Director of Development and Communications Tauri Morrow, Executive Assistant Jason Perry, Communications Associate Johnny Worthy, Life Skills

Instructors James Burns, Fiber Optics/Broadband Mark Carrington, Heating Ventilation & Air Conditioning Kathy Crosby, PEP Linda English, PEP Tammy Greene, PEP Gary Sutton, PEP Kasi Walker, PEP 2013 Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Gala |


The Urban League of Central Carolinas was founded in 1978 to help the community eliminate disparities.

The mission of the Urban League is to empower the community to attain financial stability and social justice in a global economy through education, training, and placement services for disenfranchised communities.

740 West Fifth Street Charlotte, NC 28202 Phone - 704.373.2256

ULCC WMY 2013 Program Book  

ULCC WMY 2013 Program Book

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