Annual Network Coalition Reception Spotlights Black Excellence Across the State of Louisiana

Allen L . Semien, Sr., MALS President & CEO VCI INTERNATIONAL

The 29th Annual Network Coalition Reception recognized statewide personalities making a difference in Louisiana. Those honored were from many walks of life.

The 15-year-old middle schooler, Alexandria Hookfin from Loranger Middle School wowed the audience w/ her explanation of what represents a true community servant. She started a local movement that resulted in her collecting 1000 cases of water for the people of Jackson, MS.

Then Ms. ArkLaTex/Soul Food Queen, Taylor Sims discussed why it is important to use your given platform to amplify needs of your community. Sims, 24, is being recruited to seek the Miss Louisiana title due to her poise and passion for making a significant difference in her state.

The other highlights of the evening included paying tribute to other difference makers. State Senator Regina Barrow, State Representative Jason Hughes, Attorney Ron Haley and Attorney Terry Landry, Jr were all recognized for the tireless hours they put in defending and protecting our children. Attorney Katina Semien – Smothers was also honored for her stellar work at the Louisiana Children Fund and now with the Community Grants Programs which includes LCF.

A standing ovation was given to Mayor Jennifer Vidrine of Ville Platte for being the first African American Female State President of the LA Municipal Association in 96 years and DA Bridget Dinvaut of St. John Parish for being elected as the first African American Female State President of the LA District Attorneys Association Both were dubbed as “glass ceilings shatterers” for their accomplishments.

Also, a salute was given to activist radio personality Tony Brown for being on the air getting things right for 20 yrs.

Further, City Councilman Vernon “Step” Martin of Crowley was recognized for being a “uniting force” across the entire State of Louisiana. The 6-term LMA Black Caucus State President continues to pull all factions together.

After coming off a contentious election cycle many in the room were very excited to meet and hear from the dynamic duo Omari Hoo-Sang and Keturah Reed-Butler who orchestrated the Black Voters Matter Campaign. Both Omari Hoo-Sang and Keturah Reed-Butler accepted their awards and challenged everyone in attendance to speak up & speak out.

And don’t forget to VOTE!!!

The standing room only crowd enjoyed great food & great knowledge absorbed from this Invitation – Only high-profile event at The Jung Hotel.

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