SPECIAL TO THE FLORIDA COURIER
Willie E. Gary recently was honored during the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s 16th Annual Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Economic Summit – “Access to Capital” luncheon.
The event was held at The Roosevelt Hotel in New York City and aimed to enhance financial literacy among minorities and encourage corporate America to hire, promote and retain minority workers.
Dr. Julianne Malveaux presented Gary with the Trailblazer Award and applauded Gary for his accomplishments as a trial attorney and his commitment to youth, education and community service.
Former President Bill Clinton was the keynote speaker and Grammy Award-winning artists Mary Mary performed. The luncheon attracted over 300 business leaders, elected officials and clergy who share in Jackson’s vision and the beliefs of the Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Economic Summit.
Challenge by Gary
During his remarks, Gary challenged audience members to remember the obligation to help those that are less fortunate.
“It is imperative that as leaders in our communities, we reach back and help those that need a little motivation,” commented Gary. “It is also up to us to provide employment opportunities for young boys and girls as they graduate high school and college. None of us made it to where we are today on our own. It was because we stood on the shoulders of others that we are where we are today and we don’t have the right to not help one another.’’
Gary is well-known for his philanthropic endeavors. In 1994, he and his wife, Dr. Gloria Gary, founded the Gary Foundation, which provides college scholarships to at-risk students who wish to attend college. The Garys have donated millions of dollars to help historically Black colleges and universities, (HBCUs) including $10 million to their alma mater, Shaw University in Raleigh, N.C.