Chronicle Community Service Awards winners vary in service to community

Chronicle Community Service Awards winners vary in service to community
March 29
01:00 2018

Chronicle Staff Report

Except for the Man and Woman of the Year, here are synopses of the individuals, businesses and groups honored at The Chronicle’s 33rd Annual Community Service Awards Banquet held at The Benton on Saturday, March 24.

Organization of

the Year

The ACEY Group

The ACEY Group, part of the Winston-Salem Foundation’s Womens Fund, is dedicated to helping girls and women throughout the Forsyth County community through various projects. On April 28, for instance, the group will sponsor a cross-generational discussion among women.

ACEY is an acronym that represents the group’s goals, which are achievement in the education of woman and girls about the power of philanthropy; commitment to connect with women and girls in the community; encourage self-esteem and empowerment of women and girls; and yield women and leaders and philanthropists.

The group, which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, assists girls with transitioning from foster care to adulthood and hosts many workshops to empower women and girls. 

The ACEY Group also provides scholarships and is always looking for more women to help propel its mission into the community for the betterment of girls and women.

Community Service

Dr. Amy McMichael

Dr. Amy Mcmichael is a renowned dermatologist in the Triad area.  She is affiliated with multiple hospitals, including Wake Forest Baptist Health, Lexington Medical Center and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

She received her medical degree from Perelman School Of Medicine at the University Of Pennsylvania and has been in practice for more than 20 years.  Her clinical specialty is skin of color and hair disorders.

She is a general dermatologist, which means she sees everything from head to toe.  Her passion is pigmintary issues, patients with skin of color that have concerns with skin disease and how to approach it, hair loss and overgrowth of hair.

Her patient care philosophy is to educate, to care and to allow the patients to understand what all of their options are.  She feels the social and cultural aspects are as important as the medical part. She says it’s the cultural part that changes for each patient, so her philosophy is to treat the entire person and sometimes the family in getting them better in that way.

Young Professional

Ashley Hardesty

Ashley Hardesty is a 28-year-old native of Winston-Salem and one of the city’s brightest young stars.  She graduated from N.C. State University in 2013 with a degree in fashion textile management and brand management.  Following graduation, she continued in her parents’ footsteps and became co-owner of Forsyth Seafood Market and Cafe.

In 2015, she became a certified nutritional coach.  She is the founder and curator of the Table Experience, a farm-to- table dinner party company specializing in organic meals and nutritional education held at unique venues across the Triad.

Hardesty is currently furthering her knowledge in food by attending Johnson and Wales University, pursuing a degree in culinary arts, and will graduate this May.  She is also a diligent Christ follower and hopes to continue to serve people through health, wellness and education of healing through whole foods.

Business of the year

Body and Soul

Part boutique, part gallery, part bookshop, Body and Soul remains a cultural hub in the arts district of downtown Winston-Salem.  Founded in 2002 by Dana and Michael Suggs, Body And Soul celebrates African-American culture.

Dana Suggs, a Jamaica, Queens, New York native, came to the Triad area 24 years ago.  Ten years later, New York almost called her back home, but was convinced to stay following a visit to a then newly opened Sweet Potatoes restaurant.  Dana was so inspired by the diversity she saw, she decided to stay and start Body and Soul.

The shop offers items not found most other places, from Nubian heritage skincare products, clothes and jewelry.  The store also has several books and a beautiful display of African-American culture through sculptures and paintings in the art gallery.

Lifetime Achievement

Anita “Boss Lady” Dean Arnette

Anita “Boss Lady” Dean Arnette is the voice of gospel radio in the Triad.  She began her radio career at WPEG in Winston-Salem as the first female announcer in the market.  She was given the name Boss Lady by local Dj Prince Ike. 

Boss Lady has worked at numerous stations throughout the area.  In 2000 she was employed by Truth Broadcasting for sales and promotions on AM 1340/1400 The Light.  She was soon back behind the mic for Sunday morning praise, which became one of the station’s most popular shows.

Now her loyal fans tune in Monday through Friday from noon to 3 p.m. to hear her midday gospel praise show, which debuted in 2013.

Her weekly words of praise and encouragement blesses her listeners.  She has also received countless awards over the years as well. 

Youth of the Year

Camden Myers

Camden, affectionately called “Cam,” suffers from a traumatic brain injury, which causes both cognitive and physical delays, making tasks such as tying shoes or holding a pencil extremely difficult.

As he aged, he became increasingly aware of his shortcomings and his self-esteem suffered greatly.  Beginning as a hobby to elevate his strengths and teach him some social and math skills, Cam and his parents started a pop-up style coffee business.

To everyone’s surprise, Cam enjoyed it so much, the business turned into an every-weekend occurance and Cam’s Coffee Creation was born.  Today, with support from the community, they are the first organization to create gainful employement opportunities specifically for individuals with intellectual and physical disabilities in the Winston- Salem area.

Business of the Year

Char’s Hamburgers

Bryant George has been the owner of Char’s Hamburgers since July 1997.  He began his life there after picking up an application at the restaurant while picking up some hot dogs for his father in 1983.

Four months after starting at Char’s, he became assistant manager and then manager of the business.  He was later offered the chance to purchase the business from founder David Speaks, and the rest is history.

What separates Char’s from other local restaurants has been George’s commitment to hiring local youth.  Over the years he has employed hundreds of local youth as a means to keep them off the streets while also having the ability to put some money in their pockets.  His goal has and always will be to keep jobs for young people in the community.


Cook Medical

Since 1963, Cook Medical has worked closely with physicians to develop technologies that eliminate the need for open surgery.  They combine medical devices, biologic materials and cellular therapies to help the world’s healthcare systems deliver better outcomes more efficiently.

Cook Medical continually works hard to improve their minimally invasive medical devices and the way they’re delivered to hospitals and doctors around the world.

Being a family owned business allows them to do what’s best for the patient.  Their dedication to work through a problem for as long as it takes to find the simple solution is paramount.

Cook’s new flourish device helps with the treatment of esophageal atresia, which is a birth defect of the esophagus.  Surgery has traditionally been the only treatment option until now and that device is manufactured right here in Winston-Salem. 

Community Service

Emma Allen

As a highly successful entrepreneur, Emma Allen has owned a number of businesses.  She is a seasoned financial expert and is a banker of 23 years. She has been called “the bankers banker” by all accounts.

Allen has coached, mentored and advised financial professionals and individuals from across the country and internationally.  She transcends traditional thinking and has a proven track record of helping clients significantly advance their personal financial conditions.

She is a sought after speaker on the Les Brown Speakers Network.  Allen has received numerous accolades, including the Maya Angelou Women Who Lead Award and the Thurgood Marshall Award just to name a few.

As a community activist, Allen currently offers a wide range of financial empowerment workshops for college students, community and civic organizations and churches.  She is the chairperson for the MWBE advisory committee, which helps to ensure women and minorities have equal opportunities in the businesses world.

Her philanthropic works in finance are a valuable asset to the city of Winston-Salem and beyond.

Curator of the arts

Endia Beal

Endia Beal is a North Carolina-based artist who is internationally known  for her photographic narratives and video testimonies that examine the personal yet contemporary stories of marginalized communities and individuals.  She currently serves as the director of Diggs Gallery at Winston-Salem State University and associate professor of art.  As a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill in 2008, she earned a dual bachelor’s degree in art history and studio art. Following graduation, Beal was one of four women nationally selected to participate in Art Table, a program designed to promote women in the visual arts.  Beal has used her experiences as a platform to advocate for minority opportunities within the arts.  She was instrumental in creating marketing campaigns that redefined the way minority communities interact with art.  Beal has been featured in several online ediorials and national magazines.  Her work has been exhibited in several institutions around the country as she continues to bridge the gaps and increase our social awareness.

She was not present to pick up her award Saturday.

Community Service

Josh Howard   


The Josh Howard Foundation is dedicated to helping to improve the quality of life of economically challenged communities by using programs and services that focus on academic improvement, community outreach and athletic fitness training.

It is committed to having an active role in uplifting the community. Its innovative programs will help youth to become well-rounded citizens and enhance the quality of life of our senior citizens and the community as a whole.

The Josh Howard Foundation’s commitment to the young people of the area is commendable.  It not only hold annual basketball camps free of charge for children at various recreation centers, it also holds basketball leagues for teens and young adults as a constructive alternative to hanging out on the streets.

In addition to basketball, the foundation also has an afterschool program, a community garden for seniors, works with former felons to obtain employment and is involved with helping seniors and kids during the thanksgiving and Christmas holiday seasons.

Human Relations

Kenya Thornton

Community Inervention and Educational Services and Eliza’s Helping Hands are two agencies founded by Kenya Thornton.  Both organizations are in the Winston Mutual building.

Community Intervention And Educational Services is a community agency with a focus to support and empower families and individuals in need of advocacy and quality support services stemming from a domestic violence crisis.

Eliza’s Helping Hands is a nonprofit organization striving to bring resources to victims, their families and unserved populations affected by domestic violence, sexual assault, violence and social injustice.

Thornton has long been an advocate for those without a voice and works tirelessly to help those in the community who need assistance.

Church of the Year

The Love Church

The Love Church is one of the most progressive churches in the city of Winston-Salem.  In just seven years, the church has grown from five initial members to over 500, and senior pastor Curtis Friday is reaching for even higher feats in the years to come.

The Fridays started the church, out of the desire to see God’s people fulfill their God given potential as they come to know His will and purpose for their lives. 

As church members show through community outreach, teaching, service and biblical study about the unconditional love of God, they believe lives will be changed.

They are there to empower the community, reach the youth, young adults and everyone looking for a change by showing them the love that God has shown them.  They are there to provide growth in every aspect of life, preaching and teaching the Word of God to win souls for Christ.  They are a church where you come as you are but won’t stay as you are.

Business of the Year

Ma’ati Spa

Ma’ati Spa is a beautiful and modern spa conveniently located in downtown Winston-Salem.  The experienced massage therapists there can take away your aches and pains with treatments using aromatherapy, trigger point science, clinical and relaxation techniques.

They use the perfect synergy between Eastern bodywork modalities and Western clinical techniques.  In addition to massages, their services include facials, paraffin wax treatments, salt scrubs, foot reflexology and carpal tunnel treatment.

All of the therapists have their own specialties and personalized touch.  They are a team of people dedicated to ensuring the health and wellness of each individual.  They put the client and creating a therapeutic, caring environment first.

Curator of the Arts

Owens Daniels

Owens Daniels is a communicator, visual artist and photographer who uses photography to tell stories.  His work talks about life experiences and believes everyone has a story to tell.

As a visual artist, he gets inspirations from life’s experiences.  Drawing from those experiences and others he enjoys communicating stories with a photojournalistic style and vision that hopes will change your life, look and style.

His love for art began as a youth when he drew a picture from a book and his mother and father made him feel proud of his efforts.  That experience along with others led him into photography.

Daniels’ father gave him a piece of advice, which guides his work to this day.  His father told him everybody is different and has a story to tell; tell what you see.

Organization of

the year Phi Beta

Sigma Fraternity

The Delta Sigma Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated was chartered on Dec. 10, 1923, by five noble men whose mission was to perpetuate the high ideals of Sigma, which are brotherhood, scholarship and service.

Today, 94 years later, the brothers of the Delta Sigma Chapter continue to uphold the principles and high ideals on which the chapter was chartered.  They strive to be role models and have a positive impact on the lives of those in the community, their peers and future generations of young men.

In the past year the chapter has donated over 2,000 dollars to the March of Dimes, awarded $2,000 in scholarships to high school graduates, adopted a family during the holiday seasons and logged countless volunteer hours at multiple organizations.

The organization has been recognized by the fraternity as the Chapter of the Year at the local, regional and international level.  The group’s goal is to continue to have a lasting impact on its community and uplift the group’s motto: “Culture for Service and Service for Humanity.”

Community Service

Porsche Jones

Porsche Jones is a community health and wellness educator at Novant Health.  She received her BA in communications from Wake Forest University and her MS in rehabilitation counseling at Winston-Salem State University.

As a former Division 1 athlete, she developed leadership, communication and personable skills that have created countless opportunities in her personal, professional and athletic branding.

She has a strong passion for working and encouraging others, specifically the adolescent population.  She is the president and founder of BOND, which stands for Building On New Development.  BOND is an organization created to provide leadership, discipline, SAT prep and athletic development for young men and women.

As of 2016 BOND has accumulated 18 full scholarships to Division 1 schools from three graduating classes.  In 2018 BOND has shifted in creating positive opportunities for young men with hopes of achieving the same outcome of previous graduating classes.

Jones is a visionary who is passionate about helping others to live more fulfilled lives through connecting the dots and become aware of measuring successful outcomes.

Human Relations

Rachel Beatty


Rachel Beatty Jackson was born in Greensboro, North Carolina.  She co-founded Concerned Women For Justice, which was a prison ministry, for 30 years.  She also co-founded and volunteered on the Human Relations Commission and has been a member of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company since 1979.

Jackson was formerly employed by St. Phillips Child Development, Experiment In Self-Reliance, Northwest Child Development and the Forsyth County Public Library for 23 years.

She currently volunteers for the local Meals on Wheels, which she has been affiliated with for over 20 years.  Jackson is an elder and property manager at Lloyd Presbyterian Church.  She is a mother of six and grandmother of 12.

Special Recognition

Renita Thompkins-Linville

Since graduating from Howard University School of Law, attorney Renita Thompkins-Linville has acheived more than 30 years of experience helping North Carolinias when they need a professional and compassionate legal advocate.

In her distinguished career, she has developed professional relationships with and earned the respect of many other lawyers, judges and prosecutors in the area.

She is also actively involved in the community.  She does outreach and is involved in ministry at Piney Grove Baptist Church.  She is proud to serve her community in any capacity she can.

For Seniors Only!

Rev. Dr. Michael D. Simpson

Caring for senior citizens has been a passion for Rev. Dr. Michael Simpson since his days as a young pastor.  His focus on senior adults continued following his retirement as the senior minister of Winston-Salem’s First Christian Church in 2013. 

Simpson, a Norman, Oklahoma native, received his Doctorate of Ministry degree from San Francisco Thological Seminary and has pastored congregations in Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri and North Carolina. 

Most recently he has taught classes for older adults in numerous areas such as literature and spirituality.    He has also served as bus driver, transporting seniors on trips along with assisting senior authors in their efforts to be published.

Lifetime Achievement

Rudolph Valentino Boone Sr.

Rudolph Valentino Boone Sr. was born in Norfolk, Virginia.  He was drafted into the U.S. Air Force in 1946 and upon his discharge he entered what is now North Carolina A&T State University, where he earned his degree in music education.  He later earned his master’s degree from Vandercook College of Music in Chicago, Illinois.

He started working for the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools system in 1955, where he stayed for 30 years.  Boone, a dedicated member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, founded, directed and performed with various choirs and bands over the years.

He has earned countless awards and honors for his musical talents, too many to count, actually.  Throughout his career he taught at 27 schools, with 20 years as the band director at Carver High School.  He also organized the first statewide drum major /majorette clinic and contest and had several state champions along the way.  His impact on kids lives through music will be remembered for generations to come.

Organization of the Year

Social Heart

Social Heart is a local nonprofit that feeds the homeless along with distributing food, coats, gloves and hygiene products to those in need in various parts of the Triad.

Cedric Allen created Social Heart back in 2009 with just $50 and a dream.  Giving back was something he learned from his mother and others growing up as a kid in the Kimberly Park housing development.

With help from volunteers, since 2009 Social Heart has helped feed hundreds of individuals across the state.  The nonprofit has even given away a car to a single mother of three to remedy her transportation needs.

Social Heart has also been on the front line when it comes to fighting injustice in the area.  The organization was first to bring to light the living conditions in the Rolling Hills apartment complex.  Allen’s dedication to helping the less fortunate has made a tremendous impact in the city and beyond.

Business of the Year

Sweet Potatoes

With the perfect combination of great customer service and top-notch cooking, Sweet Potatoes is a culinary staple of downtown Winston-Salem.

Owners Vivian Joiner and Stephanie Tyson opened their award-winning restaurant in 2003 in the downtown arts district of the city, where they live.

Their unique Southern inspired uptown down home cooking is a must have for anyone young or old. 

Joiner has a strong background in guest relations and has spent more than 20 years in retail and restaurant service. Her genuine care and concern for people helped to strengthen her eye for detail in many aspects of guest service.

Tyson is a creative chef who has turned growing up in the South into the soul of the restaurant.  She left North Carolina to travel and cook around the world but could not believe what a relief it was to come home again.

Organization of

the Year

United Health Centers

Health care is a major concern for many individuals across the nation.  Thanks to United Heath Centers, people in Forsyth County have an affordable option to deal with their health care needs.

They have three facilities to serve the needs of the under and uninsured people of the city.  The newest facility on Peters Creek Parkway now offers low cost dental services as well.

United Heath Centers’ doctors see patients for as low as $35 on a sliding fee scale, which is based on the patients’ income and family size.  The center has full-time doctors at all locations and has a partnership with Wake Forest Baptist, who have doctors on rotation there, also.

United Heath Centers officials want the community to know they offer top-notch health care even while offering reduced rates.  Another benefit is you see the same doctor each visit and don’t have to wait weeks or months to get in.

Special Recognition

Winston-Salem Police Foundation

This summer, the kids of Winston-Salem will get a new view of police when they roll out an ice cream truck and bookmobile in one vehicle.  Thanks to the Winston-Salem Police Foundation, the Operation Sweet Reads vehicle will soon make its maiden journey.

The foundation supports the Winston-Salem Police Department through funding for training, skill development and partnerships between the community and police.

Sweet Reads will involve officers giving out free ice cream to children, which they’ll then read stories to inside the truck.  The children will also receive a free book.

The foundation feels it’s a great opportunity to bridge the gap between officers and children while also helping children to read.

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