05/06/05 — Dudley at national conference

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Dudley at national conference

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on May 6, 2005 1:45 PM

From staff reports

Wayne Boys and Girls Clubs director Mary Ann Dudley was among a record 3,000 youth workers who attended the 99th Annual National Conference of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in San Diego.

One of the standout sessions for Ms. Dudley was one led by Olympic Gold gymnast Dominique Dawes. Dawes, the first African American to win a bronze medal in the best-all-round competition in 1996, has spent the last several years traveling the country, inspiring young people, especially girls, to "get up and move." She is the chairman-elect of the Women's Sports Foundation.

Ms. Dudley said equally compelling were the remarks of keynote speaker, Henry Cisneros. The former secretary of HUD and now chairman and CEO of City Vista, Cisneros said it's imperative for the United States to get back to the business of building "villages within cities" to promote harmony across all racial and socio-economic levels.

"The conference gave us great ideas, and the opportunity to network with other Boys and Girls Clubs who are facing many of the same challenges we are here in Wayne County," Ms. Dudley said. She said another high point of the four-day national conference was a general session featuring BGCA's 2003 National Youth of the Year, Mieasha Hicks, and this year's five Youth of the Year finalists, including the organization's current national teen spokesman, T.J. Rancour.

The Boys and Girls Club has played an integral role in Wayne County for 58 years, providing daily programs and services to 2,100 young people. The club is open Monday through Friday from 2 to 7 p.m. Summer hours will be noon to 6 p.m., with programs in character, leadership development, education and career enhancement, the arts, health and life skills, sports, fitness and recreation.

For information, contact the Boys and Girls Clubs of Wayne County at 759-2358.