Long Beach Branch NAACP Names 2015 ACT-SO Gold Team

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Long Beach Branch NAACP 2015 ACT-SO Gold Medalists are Krystal Ball, Long Beach Poly High School, 12th Grade, Short Story & Original Essay, Neyah Barbee, Long Beach Poly High School, 12th Grade, Painting & Poetry, Camille Burrus, Mayfair High School, 11th Grade, Drawing, Daylon Flewelen, Paramount High School, 9th Grade, Instrumental Contemporary Music, Holly Dorielle, Millikan High School, 11th Grade, Instrumental Classical Music, Faith Matovu, Long Beach Poly High School, 12th Grade, Vocal Contemporary Music, Prince Mays, Millikan High School, 11th Grade, Oratory, Diane McMillan, Culver City High School, 12th Grade, Dramatics, Caleb Smith, Palos Verdes Peninsula High School, 12th Grade, Biology.

The National Competition will be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, July 8-12, 2015 during the NAACP National Convention. The LB NAACP ACT-SO Chair is Dr. Charles D. Smith. The other members of ACT-SO Committee are Thyjuan Harris, Desiree Keys, Dr. Howard Wray, Treasurer, President Naomi Rainey, Mrs. Marie Treadwell, Secretary, Emily Pierson, LBCC College Committee, and Gloria Thomas, Youth Council Chair. The ACT-SO Program is just one of the examples that demonstrate Long Beach Branch NAACP is making a difference in the Long Beach community.

ACT-SO is an acronym for Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics. There are 25 categories of competition in the sciences, humanities, performing and visual arts. Vernon Jarrett, a renowned author and journalist, initiated the idea of a program that would promote and reward academic achievers the same way sports heroes are honored. ACT-SO is a yearlong enrichment program designed to recruit, stimulate, improve and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African American high school students. The ACT-SO program centers around the dedication and commitment of community volunteers and business leaders; to serve as mentors and coaches to promote academic and artistic excellence among students of color, especially African American students. High school students, who are citizens of the United States, enrolled in grades 9-12 and are amateurs in the categories of competition are able to participate. Program participants are teamed up with coaches in their appropriate categories in order to sharpen their skills for the spring local competition.

ACT-SO alumni occupy a wide variety of careers including executive positions with corporations like Lockheed Martin and Citigroup—one serves as a vocal coach for FOX television’s “American Idol.” Famed ACT-SO alumni include musician Kanye West, actress Jada Pinkett-Smith, filmmaker John Singleton and comedian Anthony Anderson.

Naomi Rainey, President of the Long Beach Branch NAACP, has been with the ACT-SO Program since its conception. If you would like to support the program, you can send your tax-deductible donation to the Long Beach Branch NAACP at P.O. Box 1594 Long Beach, CA 90801. For more information, please call (562) 856-7586. The LB NAACP ACT-SO Program Chair is Dr. Charles D. Smith.

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