Orlando, Fla. — The Orlando Area Office of UNCF (United Negro College Fund), the nation’s largest minority education organization, will host its 14th annual Orlando Mayor’s Black History Month Luncheon on Feb. 17 at the Church Street Station Ballroom. Hosted by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, the event will bring together education, business and civic leaders to celebrate the contributions of African Americans to the greater Orlando community, and to raise funds and awareness of UNCF. Lucille O’Neal will serve as Honorary Chair and Sandra Jeter will serve as Luncheon Chair.
“I am very excited about this year’s luncheon and about raising as much funding as possible,” said Lucille O’Neal. “It is our mission to ensure that local disadvantaged students have the opportunity to realize their dreams of a college education. In order to rebuild the village that helps to raise our children, we must all join together and invest in the next generation.”
The 2016 UNCF Champions of Education Award will be presented to both Robert Billingslea and John Crossman. Billingslea, former Vice President for Corporate Urban Affairs for Walt Disney, is being honored for his long time service in education. Among his many contributions is his service on UNCF’s Orlando Leadership Council and as a trustee for UNCF-member institution Bethune-Cookman University. Crossman also has a strong commitment to education in Orlando. He created the Crossman & Company Endowed Real Estate Scholarship at Bethune- Cookman University to increase the amount of minorities in real estate. He and his family have also created an endowed fund in the memory of John’s father, the Rev. Kenneth C. Crossman, which gives annual scholarships to students.
“We invite all members of the Orlando community to join us as we raise money to send deserving young people to college,” said Anita Henri, UNCF Area Development Director. “Everyone who believes that ‘A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Waste, but a Wonderful Thing to Invest In®,” should attend the luncheon. Let’s empower our young people so they may secure passports to Better Futures® by way of a college degree.”
For more than 70 years, UNCF has provided financial assistance to students and its 37 member historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Without UNCF’s support, many of the students attending these colleges would not have access to higher education or the benefits they provide. UNCF’s luncheon helps raise funds to support more than 60,000 students a year at more than 1,100 colleges and universities across America. The majority of UNCF scholars come from low-income families and are among the first in their families to attend college. Across Florida, UNCF assists more than 6,000 students who attend UNCF member institutions or who receive UNCF scholarships to attend other area colleges and universities.
For more information on the 14th Annual UNCF Orlando Black History Month Luncheon, or for sponsorship packages, please contact Jazmine Barnes at 407.896.6940, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 900 colleges and universities. Learn more at www.uncf.org.