Chris Tucker, Charles “Roc” Dutton, Louis Gossett, Jr., and Jonathan Mariner Among Participants To Support U.S. Dream Academy Programs for At-Risk Youth

Online PR News – 16-May-2010 – – On May 18, 2010 the U.S. Dream Academy will hold its 9th Annual Power of a Dream Gala entitled, “Dream America,” to benefit their nationally recognized after-school programs. The event will be held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel (1150 22nd Street NW) in downtown Washington, D.C. (VIP reception - 6:00 p.m., Awards Gala - 7:00 p.m.).

Each year the Gala attracts some of Hollywood’s top celebrities, corporate executives, and VIPs, as well as political and community leaders who support and invest in the future of those children most at risk.

The annual event also honors those who are making a difference in young people’s lives with their philanthropic efforts. This year’s honorees include: news anchor veteran, Dan Rather (“CBS Evening News” and “Dan Rather Reports”); The Honorable Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX); actress Angela Bassett (The Rosa Parks Story, What’s Love Got to Do with It); Judge Joe Brown (“The Judge Joe Brown Show”); Roger D. Bozarth (CEO of Insurance Advantage); Mary Bryant Tucker, (mother of actor/comedian Chris Tucker); and Dr. Bernice A. King (daughter of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.). Additionally, Ashley Tyrrel will be honored as Mentor of the Year. Returning as hosts are actor/comedian Chris Tucker and news anchor Cynne Simpson. Emmy Award-winning actor Charles S. Dutton will serve as the keynote speaker. Academy Award-winning actor Louis Gossett Jr. and Jonathan Mariner (CFO of Major League Baseball) will serve as the Gala co-Chairs. VIP guests will include; Members of Congress, and NFL veterans, Rick Doc Walker and Darrell Green, amoung many others.

The mission of the U.S. Dream Academy is to empower children who are at risk of future incarceration to maximize their potential by providing them with academic, social and values enrichment through supportive mentoring and the use of technology.
Wintley Phipps, Founder and CEO of the U.S. Dream Academy states, “Too many children don’t believe in their greatness and are victims of their circumstances. Through our programs, we give children hope…the opportunity to dream. This fundraiser allows us to raise critical funding to invest in the dreams of the children and assist them on their path to success.”

A night full of entertainment is scheduled with a performance from teen sensation Charice. This young star first came to notoriety when Oprah gave her the opportunity to sing with Celine Dion, and now she is quickly becoming an international star who will be featured on Ellen and Oprah this month to debut her first album. Additionally, Wintley Phipps, a world-renowned Grammy nominated vocal artist will provide entertainment for the night and the Dream Academy Dream Kids Choir will also be featured. The event is designed and produced by Hutchinson Design Group.
The Gala is sponsored by Amway Global, U.S.A Funds, Insurance Advantage, MarkerNet, IBOA International, Adventist Health, Coca Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated, General Atlantic, Kalorama Partners, Southwest Airlines and Integrated Management Systems.

Important Statistics
• One in 40 children in the United States has a parent in prison.
• In 2007, an estimated 2.3 percent of children in the U.S. under age 18 had at least one incarcerated parent.
• More than 10 million children in the U.S. have had a parent in prison.
• Each year, about 400,000 mothers and fathers finish serving prison or jail sentences, and return home.

About U.S. Dream Academy

The U.S. Dream Academy focuses on impacting the lives of children with incarcerated parents and children falling behind in school. The program, started by renowned gospel singer Wintley Phipps, is currently operating in 10 cities nationwide (Baltimore, MD; East Orange, NJ; Houston, TX; Indianapolis; IN; Los Angeles, CA; Memphis; TN; Orlando, FL; Philadelphia, PA; Salt Lake City, UT; and Washington, DC), transforming children into dreamers who envision and realize their potential. Its research-based initiatives challenge more than 800 young people and engage them in active learning through one-to-one mentoring, strong academics, and technology-driven activities and curricula. www.usdreamacademy.org


Media Contact: Priscilla Clarke, Clarke & Associates, Tel. (202)723-2200, pclarkepr@aol.com

Event Information / Sponsorship Contact: Angela Hunt Bonitto, Director of Development, U.S. Dream Academy, Tel . (410)772-7143, abonitto@U.S.dreamacademy.org