February_2005_193_1 On Thursday, February 24th, 2005, I had an opportunity to share an incredible experience with 50 African American college scholarship recipients, as keynote speaker Download Download 02_remarks_before_ronald_mcdonald_ho.mp3 01_remarks_before_ronald_mcdonald_ho.mp3 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities, African-American Future Achievers Scholarship Luncheon and Awards Program held in Los Angeles, California. 

With my friends Leslie Sykes, anchor for KABC TV here in Los Angeles, as mistress of ceremony and Pastor Fredrick Murph of Brookins AME Community Church doing the invocation, the afternoon was destined to be special... But the real treat were all of the positive bright lights in the audience, February_2005_192 all 100% focused on claiming their future and going to college!

Sponsored by the McDonald's Operator's Association of Southern California and the Ronald McDonald House Charities, the African-American Future Achievers scholarship program was created in 1992 to recognize African-American, high school seniors who plan to make an impact in their communities. Recipients are awarded $1,000 scholarships to the four-year accredited college or university of their choice. Since its inception, the program has awarded $400,000 to deserving college-bound students in Southern California.February_2005_195

There are 600 franchised and company-owned restaurants in the five Southern California counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura.

Well, thanks to the help of McDonald's franchise owners, there are now at least 50 young African-Americans that I no longer have to worry about -- and that's a wonderful thing....

Onward, with HOPE


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