On March 19, the theme was Unity for Bon Ami Temple #49 at their Annual Honoring Awards Dance Banquet at the Comfort Inn Hotel in Penn Hills. Nearly 200 gathered to witness the 2016 awards presentations.
This year’s honorees included Erica Upshaw Givner, who received the Entrepreneur Award. Her business Vision Towards Peace LLC began years ago with a quest for generational wellness when founder Erica Upshaw-Givner took her first Social Work class at the Community College of Allegheny County. Her commitment to combat the stereotypical stigma attached to African American’s seeking mental health wellness has remained undeterred. Her goal has always been to serve the community in which she was raised. Renee Aldridge read her profile and the award was presented by Daughter Gwendolyn Starr.
Brother Melvin Hubbard El received the Humanitarian Award. The Honorable Ed Gainey read his profile and the award was presented by Daughter Marah Connor. Gainey said that El has exhibited nothing short of the ultimate humanitarian. “He has tirelessly given one hundred percent to the communities that I serve and to the entire Pittsburgh community.”