Highlights from the 2012 NTC
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At the Opening Plenary Session on Monday morning, August 13, the keynote speaker was United States Navy  Jet Pilot Commander Drew Brown.  After his introductory video was shown, Commander Brown provided insight on his 11 Facts of Life which are: (1) Wake up, show up and pay attention; (2) Be happy, have fun and be nice; (3) Everything you do comes backs to you; (4) Have purpose, work hard, work smart and don’t quit; (5) Art of thought, art of communication, and art of action; (6) Good will overcome evil; (7) Use common sense and moderation; (8) Emit integrity and respect; (9) Develop self-discipline; (10) Treat everybody the way you want to be treated and (11) You got to believe.  Commander Brown provided his website address which is www.drewbrown.net .  He received a standing ovation at the conclusion of his presentation.
Blacks in Government (BIG) National Training Conference (NTC) was held in the Motor City…Detroit, Michigan, August 12-16, 2012.

The National Delegates Assembly was Sunday-Monday, August 12-13, at the Marriott Renaissance Hotel.  The FMS-BIG Chapter had eight (8) primary delegates and two (2) alternate delegates who volunteered to serve and represent the Chapter.  These delegates listened intently as the National Officers presented their various reports to the Assembly and voted on many issues affecting the organization.  On day two of the Assembly, National Officers were elected as follows:  National President - Darlene Young; First Vice President - Matthew Fogg;   Secretary - Felicia Shingler; Third Vice President - Gary Blackmon; and Assistant Treasurer - DeVonne Collins.   All newly elected officers are from Region XI with the exception of Gary Blackmon from Region VIII.  Kudos to Region XI.
The Closing Plenary Banquet and Awards Program was held on Thursday, August 16.  The Keynote Speaker was Sheryl Underwood, businesswoman and multi-faceted multi-media entrepreneur, entertainer, owner and Chief Executive Officer of Pack Rat Productions, movie and television actress, radio personality and philanthropist.  She is the 23rd International President of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.   Ms. Underwood’s message centered around embracing our past as African Americans and to continue to empower ourselves to educate to escalate and reach our potential through BIG.   Before conclusion of the program, 2012 Prestige Awards were presented which included awards for an outstanding Chapter or Region, outstanding individual contribution to BIG, and the chapter with an exemplary membership increase.

What a great NTC in Detroit.  If you were not there, you missed an outstanding training conference.
The FLAG Youth Leadership Conference was held on Wednesday, August 15.   Dr. Doris Sartor, National FLAG Program Coordinator, did a fantastic job in presiding over the program which featured several speakers from the Department of Defense.  In addition, throughout the day, group training sessions were held for the youth which included topics on “Ways to Pay for College”, “Developing Positive Relationships”, and “Navigating Change - Planning for Life After High School”.   Jason Egolum represented the FMS-BIG Chapter at the FLAG Conference and stated that this conference was an enlightening experience for him that he will always remember.