Last year, Tori Turner and Aaron Johnson, 17 and 14 years old respectively, were each awarded a $10,000 scholarship for their exceptional community-based projects. Turner is a philanthropist, motivational speaker, author and actress who raised over $16,000 through her non-profit Tori Turner’s D.R.E.A.M. Big Foundation. Johnson is the author of two books, owner of a production company and volunteer speaker for the Trayvon Martin Foundation.
The scholarships were granted compliments of McDonald’s USAs 365Black Community Choice Youth Award program, which salutes outstanding individuals who are committed to making positive contributions that strengthen the African-American community.
This year, the company is back to do the same. This summer, two deserving teens will be honored at the 365Black event, which will take place over July 4th weekend during the ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans.
“So many young leaders are making positive change in their communities. We at McDonald’s are proud to bring our neighbors together in recognizing these excellent young people through the Community Choice Youth Awards,” said William Rhodes, McDonald’s U.S. marketing director. “We mean it when we say we are ‘Deeply Rooted in Your Community’ and we hope this recognition and appreciation of their work encourages our honorees to continue aiming high.”
This year’s partner for 365Black is the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, a leading advocate for Historically Black Colleges & Universities, which will distribute the $10,000 scholarships to both honorees.