Penney Ainsworth - President/CEO Boys and Girls Club
The Rotary Club of Jackson
Rotagram
September 16, 2019
 
The Rotary Club of Jackson was pleased to hear from our own Penney Ainsworth, President/CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Central Mississippi.
 
The invocation was given by Neddie Winters, the pledge of allegiance was led by Ted Jackson and the Four-Way Test was led by Janet Scott.
 
Steve Corbitt introduced visiting Rotarians and Guests.
 
Seated at the head table included:  Jared Acy with Watkins, Acy, Strunk Design, Kathy Hackshaw with Outlets of MS, Dolphus Weary, retired with REAL Christian Foundation and Leroy Walker with LTM Enterprises, who introduced our speaker.
 
Janet asked the members of the Rotary Club of Jackson to observe a moment of silence for recently passed Honorary member, Bob Lowrance and for Victor Smith’s wife, Mildred.
 
Kathy Hackshaw presented an opportunity for the club to participate in “Seven Days for the Troops” a fundraising campaign in partnership with Purple Heart Homes: Jackson Restoration Hope Chapter, that will be taking place in the parking lot of the Outlets of Mississippi from Nov. 1-8th.  Please contact Kathy Hackshaw if you or your company has interest in participating khackshaw@outletsofms.com or 769-972-3010.  Scott Burns with Seven Days will be addressing the club on October 14th.
 
Tom Johnson addressed the club regarding the Bequest Society.  The Bequest Society is an opportunity to leave a working legacy in tomorrow’s Rotary.  You can be an important part of the Foundation’s next century of serving humanity by including a gift to Rotary’s Endowment in your estate plan.  Brochures are available from both Amy and Tom.
 
In September of 2013, Penney Ainsworth, joined the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Mississippi as President/CEO.  She has been a professional in the Boys & Girls Clubs movement for over 20 years.  Her career in Boys & Girls Clubs has taken her across the country from Virginia, through Georgia, Kansas City and Mississippi.  Penney’s tenure with BGC began in 1997 as a Program Specialist in the Robert Village Unit of the BGC of South Hampton Roads in Norfolk, VA.  Penney graduated from Norfolk State University with a Master’s Degree in Social Work concentrating on Community Development.  Outside of Penney’s commitment to her family, she is focused on local and national efforts in the area of youth development, mentoring and the plight of single mothers.
 
Penney gave an energetic comparison to the work of the Boys and Girls Club, to the work of Rotarians.  Great futures begin with the Boys and Girls Club (BGC).  Boys and Girls Club has been impacting and saving lives in MS for 88 years.  Members of BGC become leaders with a moral compass.  Clubs provide a safe and constructive environment for kids and teens during out-of-school hours.  Community based and led by professional staff, the club serves the community.  BGC offer programs and service to help young people succeed in school, develop leadership skills and maintain healthy lifestyles.
 
In Central MS, BGC has had an impact on more than 6000 kids, serving 300,000 meals and picking up from 40 schools. The graduation rate of BGC member is 97%.  The BGC is committed to improving MS, with a motto of “Whatever It Takes to Build Great Futures”.  The mission is to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.  Members of the Rotary Club of Jackson are encouraged to step through the doors and volunteer. 
 
Penney presented an opportunity to participate in the Blues by Starlight program, taking place on October 17, 2019.  This evening reception provides attendees with a large selection of offerings from local restaurants, caterers mixologists and distributors.  Additionally, there will be musical entertainment and activities for all.  The event is held at Highland Colony and usually attracts more than 2000 people. 
 
For more information about Blues By Starlight or the Boys and Girls Club, please go to www.bgccm.org .
 
Please join us next week as our speaker will be Cecil Brown, Public Service Commissioner, Central District.