Contact: Marcia Cole


Young, Gifted & Black Entrepreneurial Awards 
Celebrates 5th Anniversary with 
Special Nina Simone Black History Tribute


New York, New York—(January 14, 2010)  Celebrating the achievements of our past, present and future, the Young, Gifted & Black (YGB) Entrepreneurial Awards honors Black History Month onWednesday, February 24, 2010 at the Tribeca Rooftop in New York City, by acknowledging 25 noted African and Caribbean Americans for their talent, ambition and achievements toward the “Continued Pursuit of Success.” The YGB Entrepreneurial Awards, which has been given out to more than one hundred honorees since its inception in 2006, was created by Carl O. Gray, Presidentand CEO, The NetLinkz Group, Inc., and Founder of Unified Network of Business Professionals with one goal: To highlight the paths each honoree has taken throughout his/her life.  Each honoree is selected by a previous recipient from his/her pool of peers as an acknowledgement and appreciation of that individual’s drive for success—from where he/she has been in life to where he/she is now as an ambassador of the entrepreneurial spirit. 

“The Continued Pursuit of Success is about being progressive in all aspects of your life,” says Gray. “However in my opinion, a good barometer to measure the level of progress in your life should just not be about gaining wealth and power, rather it should be measured from the amount of respect given to and/or received by others who value the work you've done to make yourself a better person. Our 5th year celebration is a milestone moment that embraces our collective progress.”

In honor of this special milestone, the YGB Entrepreneurial Awards is a strong supporter of Census 2010 and welcomes Lester A. Farthing, New York State Regional Director of the Census Bureau as its Keynote Speaker, and has partnered with Reversing the Projections, Inc., which inspires and assists youth to overcome the negative elements that impact their lives, and the Nina Simone Foundation to recognize the artistic contributions of the famed songstress with two YGB Entrepreneurial Awards given in her honor. “We are very excited about making the connection with the YGB Entrepreneurial Awards program and The NetLinkz Group, Inc. community,” says Anthony R. Page, Executive Chair of the Nina Simone Experience. “Nina Simone was an American cultural treasure who believed in artistic excellence. Her stance on many things was timely and often audacious and we see the NetLinkz community doing the same: they are speaking, they are moving and we are committed to being a part of the cultural and community change they are seeking.”

Hosted by comedians Talent of 98.7 Kiss FM (2006 YGB Honoree) and Drew Fraser (2008 YGB Honoree) who performed on HBO's Bad Boys of Comedy, Def Comedy Jam and BET Comic View, the YGB Entrepreneurial Awards will be held on Wednesday, February 24, 2010 from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m. at the Tribeca Rooftop located at 2 Desbrosses Street, New York City. Tickets are $100 per person for seating at a Private VIP table; and $75 per person for general seating.Ten percent of all tickets and donations will go to Reversing the Projections, Inc., and are tax-deductible. Tickets can be purchased online at Ygbawards.com through Paypal.com. 

2010 Young, Gifted & Black (YGB) Entrepreneurial Award Recipients:

Alicia Aberdeen, Artist Abo Creations–The Nina Simone Award for Artistic Excellence

Lester A. Farthing, New York State Director, Census Bureau – Keynote Speaker

Alsion Roach, President-CEO, Alsion Roach Group, LLC – Women in Business Award 

McKyle Clyburn, CEO, Celestial Jets

Brett Wright, Co-CEO and Chief Creative Officer, Uptown Media Group and Vibe Lifestyle Network –Professional Services Award

Patricia Chin, Founder, Riddim Driven Clothing/ Co-Founder, VP Records Inc.

Chris Williams, President, WhereItzAt Magazine

Randolph Sturrup, CEO, Minna Mae Productions

Colin Williams, Owner, Colin Williams Photography– The Nina Simone Award for Artistic Excellence

Randy Bryant, President-CEO, Stand Firm Entertainment

Jodi Brockington, Philanthropist – Motivator Award


Ray Montgomery, Entrepreneur, Event Management & Operations

John Byers, Music Producer, The John Quick Project (DJ John Quick)


Rodger Miller, Founder & Chairman,  Miller Financial Services, LLC, President /Reversing The Projections, Inc.


Len Burnett, Co-CEO and Group Publisher, Uptown Media Group and Vibe Lifestyle Network –
Professional Services Award


Shawn D. McClain, Founder and Chairman of IDOL MUSIC GROUP/TEAM IDOL and Recording Artist

Kelli Doss, Managing Director, Education Pioneers

Tani Chambers, Owner, W!NK Eco Beauty Bar– Environmental Vision Award 

Kevin Carr, Vice President, Player Development, NBA


Theo Perry, President ,Thee Public Relations  


Kevin Johnson, Owner, Crystal's Bar & Lounge


Tyrone Butler, Mentor & Community Leader – Mentorship Award


Kristi Henderson, 2fifty Seven Group, Founder / 
Co-founder Women In Entertainment Empowerment Network (W.E.E.N.)


William Parrish, President-CEO, Noble Strategy LLC

Larry Scott Blackman, President-CEO, Blackmon LLC

Winsome Leahing, Owner, Salon Leahing     

About YGB: Founded in 2006 by Carl O. Gray, President and CEO, The NetLinkz Group, Inc., and Founder of Unified Network of Business Professionals, in honor of Black History Month, The Young, Gifted & Black Entrepreneurial Awards is designed for peer-to-peer acknowledgement for their Talent, Ambition and Achievements toward the “Continued Pursuit of Success.” 
About NetLinkz: The NetLinkz Group, Inc. is an organization making a conscious effort to bridge concepts, ideas, lifestyles, professions, likes and passions within a professional and entertainment forum. 

About Nina Simone Foundation:The Nina Simone Foundation was created to preserve the musical and civil rights legacy of Dr. Nina Simone. We will accomplish our mission through arts advocacy, support of progressive educational initiatives for underserved youth throughout the world as well as support from community-based health initiatives. Essentially we will focus on the concerns that were important to Dr. Nina Simone while she was yet with us. Our first major undertaking will be the launch of a touring arts initiative titled “The Nina Simone Experience" which begins in Atlanta, GA on April 16th, 2010.

About Reversing the Projections: Reversing The Projections, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization developing community initiatives to create a healthy learning environment to reclaim a lost generation of young men. We speak to the intellectual, social, economic and political needs of these young men by honoring and celebrating strong family and business structures in the community, thereby connecting them to positive visions of themselves through self-discipline, culture and history, and equipping and empowering them to become positive contributing members of their communities. 

For more interview requests and press credentials Contact:  Marcia Cole:  mcole@thegrubergroup.com             646.736.7611