Monday, September 24, 2018
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Debbie Allen was Surprised with Icon Award Presented by Her Grey’s Anatomy Co-Star James Pickens, Jr. at LA Focus’ 20th Annual First Ladies High Tea
Published September 13, 2018

Left photo: James Pickens, Jr and Debbie Allen. Right photo: Lisa Collins and Jennifer S. Newsom. (Photo credit: Ian Foxx Photography)

Lisa Collins’ 21st Annual First Ladies High Tea is always a classy affair! Debbie Allen was surprised when James Pickens, Jr. delivered a touching introduction and presented her with the Icon Award at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Jennifer S. Newsom; wife of Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, Xernona Clayton; Founder/CEO, Trumpet Awards Foundation, and Gwen Troy, Community Bible Study were honored in eloquent style, and each received a high tea hat, fit for the any occasion. LA Focus honors First ladies who have served their communities well, through activism and charitable contributions this year’s honorees were: Dr. Shalonda K. Crawford; The Experience Christian Ministries, Osie L. Hill; Love & Unity Christian Fellowship and Hyepin C. IM; President/CEO, Faith & Community Empowerment.

Gospel Legend Dr. Bobby Jones and Dr. Beverly “BAM” Crawford, Pastor, Bible Enrichment Fellowship International Church returned as co-hosts and Gospel legend Dorinda Clark Cole gave a great performance.

Debbie Allen is an actress, dancer, choreographer, television director, television producer. She is best known for her work on the 1982 musical-drama television series Fame, where she portrayed dance teacher Lydia Grant, and served as the series’ principal choreographer. She currently portrays Catherine Avery on Grey’s Anatomy.

“’The First Ladies High Tea’ was conceived in 1997 to celebrate and embrace the role first ladies and women in the church play in providing services to the community and shaping the lives of young girls and youth,” explains Publisher Lisa Collins. “So often the work that they do goes overlooked and we wanted to change that and provide a forum to recognize them for all that they do and all that they are to us.”

Four teenage girls will be awarded a $ 1,000 scholarship and (1) winner $1500.

This year’s essay theme, “On Becoming: Finding My Strength.”

The Afternoon Tea event hosted 1000 plus attendees and served a traditional Afternoon Tea menu. Sponsors included; Prudential Insurance and DFree powered by Prudential, AIDS Health Foundation, Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas, and Walmart.

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