INDIANAPOLIS - U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Steward Speakers Inc. in conjunction with Olivet Missionary Baptist Church., will host a National Black History Celebration featuring Kirk Franklin, author and Grammy Award-winning gospel, hip-hop, pop and R&B artist. This annual, youth-oriented, community outreach event will be held on Wednesday, February 22, 2017, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Olivet Missionary Baptist Church, 4141 North High School Road, Indianapolis, Indiana, 46254. This program will also include special guest: Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett, Congressman Andre Carson, 7th District of Indiana and Ms. Jaye Williams, Assistant Commissioner, CBP, Office of Finance.
Kirk Franklin, abandoned by his mother, was surrounded by family members who battled drug addictions. Franklin later became a young father, who believed he was living a life without purpose and no direction. Taken in by his Aunt, Franklin was determined to never allow his circumstances as a child to overshadow his phenomenal prodigious musical gifts. Embracing his musical talents lead to him becoming a musical trendsetter having garnered several accolades including, nine GRAMMY® Awards; 39 Stellar Awards (gospel); 16 Dove Awards (CCM); and eight NAACP Image Awards. Kirk Franklin’s unprecedented penetration into the mainstream has also fortified him to also become a New York Times bestseller author for The Blueprint: A Plan for Living Above Life's Storms. Franklin has never hid behind his celebrity status and has remained connected to his audiences through his music and truthful discussions of life. Franklin continues to use his life’s struggles and pitfalls to help and encourage young people to never allow bad times hinder you from working towards greatness.
“At CBP we recognize our responsibility to serve the community that we are in. It is through these partnerships and community programs, that we our duty to influence and impact the youth of our future by exposing them to notable role models, ” said Darlene Sedwick, Deputy Director, Diversity and EEO Division, CBP Privacy and Diversity Office. “For more than 25 years, we have partnered with Steward Speakers Inc., and 10 years with the Olivet Missionary Baptist Church with a primary goal of uplifting, enlightening and empowering our youth. This year, we will continue on that path.”
The CBP Privacy and Diversity Office provides EEO, diversity and inclusion, and civil rights/civil liberties services to almost 60,000 CBP employees and to the hundreds of millions of travelers and members of the trade and traveling community that CBP interacts with in the performance of our homeland security mission.