The Links, Incorporated
Leading with Excellence ~ Serving with Grace
For Immediate Release

July 13, 2010

Contact: Dan Rene of Impact Strategies
703-869-1146
drene@impactstrategiesllc.com


MARGOT JAMES COPELAND ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE LINKS, INCORPORATED

Organization Recognizes Strong Record of Community Service by New Officers & Other Honorees


[Detroit, MI] [July 13, 2010] – More than 2,500 of the 12,000 plus members of The Links, Incorporated attended the organization’s 37th National Assembly (June 30 - July 4). The five days of workshops, seminars and key-note speakers was held in Michigan at Detroit’s Cobo Center. During the event, Members of The Links, Inc. celebrated community service achievements, recognized outstanding contributions of individuals and elected new officers to lead the organization. The new officers of The Links, Inc. include:

  • National President: Margot James Copeland – Cleveland (OH) Chapter

  • National Vice President: Glenda Newell-Harris – Alameda Contra-Costa (CA) Chapter

  • National Secretary: Kimberly Jeffries Leonard – Arlington (VA) Chapter

  • National Treasurer: Katherine Wilson – Bold City (FL) Chapter

  • Chair, National Nominating Committee: Pamela Gentry – Annapolis (MD) Chapter

The Links, Inc.’s new President, Margot James Copeland, currently serves as the executive vice president for KeyCorp. She serves as the chair of the KeyBank Foundation, guiding the company's strategic philanthropic investments. Previously, Copeland served as the president and chief executive officer of the Greater Cleveland Roundtable and the executive director of Leadership Cleveland. She also currently serves on the Board of Kent State University and as trustee of the Thomas White Foundation; Kenneth Scott Foundation; the Great Lakes Museum of Science, Environment and Technology; and University Hospitals Health System. Copeland received a bachelor’s degree from Hampton University and a master’s degree from The Ohio State University.

Upon accepting the role of the 15th National President, Copeland stated, “I am truly honored and humbled by the opportunity to serve as National President. I have committed, like all of our members, to work hard every day to make communities better, individuals healthier and prospects for the future brighter. The Links, Inc. is a prominent organization where service, friendship and leadership are paramount. It is my intention to continue to lead this important organization with excellence and serve with grace”.

Dr. Gwendolyn Lee has provided 4 years of dedicated service as the 14th National President where the organization has grown, thrived and made a difference in the lives of millions of people,” Copeland continued.

In a resolution saluting the outgoing National President Dr. Gwendolyn Lee, the organization recognized many of her accomplishments. The resolution states in part that Dr. Lee has, “provided superlative, most meaningful and effective leadership that has enabled the programs and operations of The Links, Incorporated to soar in unprecedented ways”. The resolution further states, that she should be saluted for her work that “positioned The Links, Incorporated for the future, spearheaded substantial and qualitative differences in the lives of so many people in communities across the United States and the world”.

In addition to selecting new officers, The Links, Inc. recognized others for their contributions to community service at the National Assembly. The prestigious Co-Founder Award is the highest honor presented to Members for their work in the programs areas established by The Links, Inc. The winners of the Co-Founder Awards this year included:

  • Services to Youth – Dr. Beverly Tatum, president of Spelman College.

  • National Trends & Services – Malaak Compton-Rock, founder and coordinator Journey for Change: Empowering Youth Through Global Service, a program that takes at-risk youth to Johannesburg South Africa for two weeks of global volunteer service.

  • International Trends & Services - Janet Nkubana, businesswoman and speaker who is passionate about empowering the underprivileged women of Rwanda & Ambassador Susan Rice, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations and member of President Obama’s Cabinet.

  • The Arts – Dr. Sonia Sanchez, renowned poet; mother; professor; national and international lecturer.

“We are so proud of what these women have accomplished in her own lives and the paths they have paved for those to follow behind them” stated Margot James Copeland, National President of The Links, Inc. “Their commitment to serving others embodies what The Links, Inc. is all about and we are very proud to honor them during our National Assembly with the Co-Founder Award.”

During the Assembly, The Links Foundation, Incorporated also announced grants for the upcoming year. The Foundation provides grants to innovative programs that address problems to be solved, or opportunities to be seized that are of regional, national or international significance. Despite the downturn in the economy, the generosity of the members of The Links, Incorporated, has made it possible for the Foundation to provide more support, grants and assistance in 2010 totaling nearly a million dollars ($950,129.00).

“We are very excited to be expanding the amount and reach of our grants in 2010,” stated Margot James Copeland, National President of The Links, Incorporated. “Our members show a tremendous commit¬ment to our communities through an impressive record of service. By combining this on-the-ground support with direct funding initiatives, we are surely making a difference in the lives of those who need help the most.”

The Links, Inc. never gathers together without making the community that hosts us a better place, and Detroit was no exception. As a lasting legacy to its host city and to kick off the 37th National Assembly, hundreds of Links joined together at the Focus Hope training and community development complex in Detroit to dedicate a new Family Learning Center at the facility. The official dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by leaders of The Links, Inc. and Focus Hope as well as other sponsors and community leaders including Detroit Mayor Dave Bing.

“We are furthering our legacy of service to the deserving and underserved of the city of Detroit, as an act of service to the entire community,” stated outgoing National President, Dr. Gwendolyn Lee. “This economic climate presents a pivotal moment for us to redouble our commitment to service, through friendship. What we begin today will live on for generations to come”.

The Links, Incorporated, founded in 1946, is one of the oldest and largest volunteer service organizations of women committed to enriching, sustaining and ensuring the culture and economic survival of African Americans and persons of African ancestry. The Links, Inc. has a membership of more than 12,000 professional women of color serving in 274 chapters in 42 states, the District of Columbia, and the Bahamas. Through its philanthropic arm, The Links Foundation, Incorporated, the organization has contributed more than $25 million to charitable causes since its founding. During this biennium, Links contributed 1.2 million documented service hours assisting communities throughout the United States, Africa and other developing countries.

The Links, Incorporated; Linked in Friendship, Connected in Service. Please visit http://www.linksinc.org

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For more information or to request media credentials to cover the National Assembly, please contact Dan Rene at 703-869-1146 or drene@impactstrategiesllc.com


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