Thursday, January 12, 2012

Two from Philly Are Champions of Change

(compiled from two press releases)

Thursday, January 12th, eight local leaders who are following in the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. will be honored at the White House as Champions of Change. These men and women, who include business and non-profit leaders and community volunteers, have each taken great strides to improve the lives of others through volunteerism and in providing economic opportunity to others in their community.

Todd Bernstein is the president of Global Citizen and the founder and director of the Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, the largest King Day event in the nation. In 1996, Bernstein launched America’s first King Day of Service in Philadelphia. For the last seventeen years, the Greater Philadelphia King Day of Service has drawn some 760,000 volunteers. This year, on January 16, more than 85,000 volunteers will serve in some 1,300 projects in the 17th annual Greater Philadelphia King Day of Service. What started in Philadelphia has become a national movement, with projects taking root in hundreds of cities, large and small, across the nation. Bernstein also founded MLK365, which transforms the King Day of Service into a year-round civic engagement initiative. This program promotes and supports sustainable civic engagement by providing ongoing volunteer opportunities, educational programs, and community partnerships across the Greater Philadelphia region.

  Rachel Turner is the Outreach & Programs Manager at Global Citizen, the Philadelphia-based nonprofit organization that coordinates the Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, the country’s largest King Day of Service event. She manages the outreach and registration process for the thousands of volunteers and hundreds of organizations that participate throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Beyond the Day of Service, she creates and manages sustainable, year-round volunteer and service learning programs for MLK365 and corporate volunteer groups. She serves as the President of the Philadelphia AmeriCorps Alums Chapter and is a member of Women’s Way’s Young Women’s Initiative. She is an alumna of Temple University’s College of the Liberal Arts and began her career in public service through the AmeriCorps program, serving one term as an AmeriCorps National member at YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School and another as an AmeriCorps VISTA member at the organization where she currently resides.

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