Young, gifted and talented awards honors six people - - Jackson, MS

Young, gifted and talented awards honors six people

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Young professionals who have dedicated their lives to excellence, community service and leadership in Mississippi were honored Sunday at Jackson Preparatory School.

The Young Gifted and Empowered Awards honors six young professionals between the ages of 25 and 45 in categories like art, philanthropy, business and education.  All of the honorees dedicated their lives to serving others.

Steven James was one of the honorees. 

"I do over 60 different projects, events around the city of Jackson," James explained.  " The ones I work with local schools, Jackson State University, I work with Stewpot, Mississippi Coalition of Domestic Violence, American Heart Association."

"You see so much negativity all the time and it's always fed to you through social media and different media outlets. It's important that we get to tell those positive stories," Shameka Reed, Founder of the Young, Gifted and Empowered Awards said.

Some of the honorees have made an impact on a national level.

"I went to the academic and performing arts school, APAC. And I learned basically everything from photography, painting, sculpture all those things and I applied all of those tools I've learned in my day to day life as a photographer," said Derek Blanks, Artist of the Year recipient. 

People who came out were inspired by their stories.

"Came out tonight to support the entrepreneurs, the up and coming business people and the people who make a difference in the community," said Gerold Girbeau of Jackson.

"It feels good, the big thing is that I'm from here. I was born here, raised here, educated here so it feels good to be able to say hey, I'm actually giving back to my community," James said.

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