Erlene Wilson Receives Business Award

Erlene B. Wilson, founder and president of EWC pr+mktg (dba E. Wilson Communications Inc.) and longtime Pikesville resident, has been recognized as one of the region’s outstanding women/minority business owners in Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia and was awarded a Top 100 Minority Business Enterprise Award. EWC pr+mktg, a Baltimore-based public relations and marketing firm, was selected for this prestigious honor from 5,000 nominations and received the award Oct. 21 at the annual awards ceremony.

“EWC pr+mktg represents the best of what our region’s minority business community has to offer,” said Sharon R. Pinder, CEO of the Center for Business Inclusion and Diversity and founder of the Top 100 MBE Awards Ceremony. “This award is the culmination of sacrifice, dedication and hard work and will inspire future minority business entrepreneurs to strive for the same level of success.”


Drive 2 Thrive Annual Benefit a Success

Randallstown resident, Jasmine Richardson, founded her hugely successful, annual October fashion benefit, Drive 2 Thrive, three years ago as a tribute to her late mother Jannie Marie “Ree” Richardson and the values that she placed on family commitment. The event is held annually on the Saturday of her mother’s birthday, Oct. 15, and benefits children’s charities. This year’s beneficiaries were Debbi Weinberg, founder and chair of Girls’ Empowerment Mission and the Port Discovery Children’s Museum Family Access Program.

Additionally, the Rising Stars of Service Award was added to this year’s program to highlight individuals under 40 years of age who give back in a big way. The inaugural recipients of the awards were Aaron Maybin, NFL player and founder of the charitable fund Project Mayhem; Keion Carpenter, retired NFL player and CEO of The Carpenter House charities: and Malaika Frazier, humanitarian and businesswoman.

Richardson, a 30-something Woodlawn High School graduate, earned a BBA in Accounting Economics and Finance at Temple University. While she is experienced in the world of Wall Street and corporate finance, she has gained greater satisfaction as founder of Echelon Life, LLC, a creative consulting firm and presenter of Drive2Thrive.

This year’s event, held at Port Discovery Children’s Museum Oct. 16, drew more than 250 participants – a record. A major part of Drive 2 Thrive and Richardson’s success has been her ability to draw top designers like recent winners of Bravo/Lifetime TV’s “Project Runway” Christian Siriano and Leanne Marshall. Drive 2 Thrive 2010 featured the show’s fan favorite from season six, Carol Hannah Whitfield; season seven breakout designer, Jay Sario; and stand-out designer from Bravo’s “The Fashion Show,” Reco Chapple.

Martin Recognized as Grainger Scholarship Winner

James Martin III, a 16-year Randallstown resident and evening-class student in the Community College of Baltimore County’s Construction Management program, was recognized with the 2010 Grainger Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship, a $2,000 award for tuition and books that Grainger grants to second-year community college students earning their associate degree or certificate in an industrial trade at select schools. The presentation ceremony was held Oct. 18 at CCBC Catonsville.

Self employed for the past five years as the owner of Mr. Fix It, a residential repair and remodeling company, Martin entered the program in order to pursue work in the commercial arena. The 52-year-old student says that although he applied for it, he was surprised to receive the scholarship. He will also receive a customized Westward toolkit upon successful completion of the program.

Scheduled to graduate next semester, Martin says, “The scholarship will definitely help me out financially in my efforts to complete my degree.”

CCBC to offer Information Sessions for Randallstown extension center

Residents of Randallstown and surrounding communities interested in sharpening their skills will soon welcome a new branch of CCBC housed in space once occupied by Giant Foods at 3637 Offutt Road. The new extension center, CCBC Randallstown at the Liberty Center, will offer training for careers in skilled trades; computers and information technology; business management; and health and human services. Currently under construction, it is scheduled to open January 2011.
In order to acquaint interested residents and potential students with information about the various programs and class offerings, the college is offering Information Sessions at the Randallstown Community Center, 3505 Resource Drive, Randallstown, Md.

Interested parties are invited to attend one of the sessions — 6-9 p.m. Nov. 11 or 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Nov. 13 – and explore the career-training opportunities.

For additional information, call 443-840-4625 or visit the Web page www.ccbcmd.edu/randallstown.


Jannette J. Witmyer

Special to the AFRO