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5th Black History Month Leadership & Service Awards

The Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism is proud to partner with the Banneker-Douglass Museum to capture a snapshot of the African Americans who are trailblazing in service and volunteerism. Read the press release here!

Luke Cooper (Baltimore City)
Mr. Luke Cooper is partner at Preface Ventures, Founder and CEO of Latimer, and an entrepreneur-in-residence at Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business. In 2021, Mr. Cooper recognized a dearth of black entrepreneurs and founded Latimer with the aim to elevate the experience of black tech entrepreneurs, provide training curriculum and advisory services to Black, Indigeounous and People of Color (BIPOC) founders.
Nicole Y. Drew, Esq. (Montgomery)

Nicole Y. Drew, Esq. is a trial attorney for the federal government, but her service to the public extends beyond her job. Ms. Drew actively serves with the Montgomery County Commission for Women, the Silver Spring Chapter of The Links, Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the J. Franklyn Bourne Bar Association. As chair of the Montgomery County Delta Alumnae Foundation Inc. (MCDAF), Ms. Drew led the foundation’s efforts to partner with the Montgomery College Foundation to create STEM scholarships.

Food 4 Thought Community Outreach Services, Inc. (Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Baltimore City)

following areas: homelessness, nutrition, mental health, and job training. Over the last two years, F4TCOS has prepared over 4,000 cold and hot meals for the community, serving more than 125 people per week.

Four Generations of Copperville’s Moaney-Henry Women (Talbot, Wicomico)

The Moaney-Henry women represent the founding black families of Maryland, and continue their service to the community. Mrs. Tissier Moaney, Mrs. Brenda Henry-Moaney, Mrs. Candace Henry, and Ms. Gabrielle Henry are descendants. They are active in many organizations and programs, including Head Start, disability services at Salisbury University, the Talbot County School Board, the former Copperville AME Church and the Waters AME Church in Oxford.

Shawnise G. Smith (Baltimore, Baltimore City, Howard)

Ms. Shawnise Smith created My New Book, Inc., in 2019 with the mission of inspiring children with limited or no access to books and resources outside of school to use their creativity, develop confidence and cultivate the love of reading by providing them with new books. She also provides new books to Little Free Libraries in Maryland, California, New Jersey, and Illinois, and continues to mail personalized book packages to children across the USA.

Angela H. Spencer (Frederick)

Ms. Spencer serves through ministry, volunteerism, advocacy, career services, and advocating for change. As the former co-chair of the Frederick County Domestic Violence Task Force, she was instrumental in initiating the “White Ribbon” campaign and the “Walk A Mile in Her Shoes” program. She also founded “The Faith Striders,” which focuses on public health, cancer awareness, support, and education.

Honoree Spencer doing vaccine outreach to the community.  Marvelous Makeovers at Macy’s with Breast Cancer Survivors. Socks for our Soles for the houseless population.Honoree Spencer as Frederick Health Hospital Children’s Christmas Gift Distribution

Carolyn V. Sterling (Washington)

Mrs. Sterling founded the senior group “Coffee, Chat & Bingo.” She saw a need in the community for seniors to spend quality time together. She volunteers at the Robert W. Johnson Community Center (RWJCC) and serves on its Board of Directors. Mrs. Sterling also volunteers with the Hospice Dove Program in Hagerstown to help children who have lost their parents.

Victims’ Rights Foundation (Baltimore City, Frederick, Montgomery, Prince George’s)

For the past 26 years, the Victims’ Rights Foundation (VRF) has been committed to helping those who do not have a voice. VRF works on behalf of domestic violence victims whose life is in danger or whose life was taken by violence and child victims of sexual assault (sometimes by a family member). It was established in response to the killings of three women: Tamika Black, 19; Tanji Jackson, 21; and Mishan Chinn, 23. Their families were the first recipients of support, which includes assistance throughout the perpetrator’s arrest, trial, and conviction.

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