Points of Light’s Annual Conference Featured Dynamic Speakers, Diverse Learning Paths, and a Celebration of Civic Culture and Volunteering
ATLANTA – June 25, 2018 – Service Unites 2018, powered by Points of Light, kicked off in Atlanta on June 18 with a carefully crafted series of events at some of the most unique and distinctively Atlanta venues, including the historic Fox Theatre, the World of Coca-Cola and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. The gathering, hosted at the Omni Atlanta Hotel at CNN Center, brought together nearly 2,000 civic leaders from the nonprofit, government and corporate sectors, and from 38 countries, to gain and share the knowledge, resources and connections needed to galvanize the power of people to create change globally.
The three-day gathering engaged attendees with specially curated content across 12 distinct learning paths designed for volunteering and service professionals who live to give, stand up and serve and be a point of light for others in communities around the world. Offering proven models and innovative solutions from leaders and experts in each field, more than 100 workshops were built around topics that included: building resilient communities; business as a force for good; disaster preparedness and response; global changemaking; national service; nonprofit capacity building and volunteer engagement; tech in volunteerism; youth engagement; and more. The conference also featured an exciting Youth Summit, giving kids and teens the opportunity to test their leadership skills by working in teams to develop and pitch service projects that would positively impact their communities. The youth pitched their ideas to a panel of judges, which awarded grants to each team to implement their projects.
“Points of Light imagines a world where everyone believes and demonstrates that they can make a difference in creating and delivering solutions to society’s most profound challenges,” said Natalye Paquin, president and CEO of Points of Light. “We appreciate our attendees for the commitment and passion they brought to Service Unites and hope they go home inspired and equipped to be a spark that ignites civic culture.”
During the conference, Points of Light recognized four inspiring changemakers by presenting them with Daily Point of Light Awards, a prestigious honor started by President George H.W. Bush during his presidency. Actor, producer and activist Jesse Williams; former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Navy combat veteran and retired NASA astronaut Capt. Mark Kelly; and Atlanta native NBA star Dwight Howard, all featured speakers at the conference, joined more than 6,200 previous recipients of Daily Point of Light Awards. Points of Light also announced the 2018 honorees of The Civic 50, a recognition of the 50 most community-minded companies in the United States, and recognized the Corporate Volunteer Council of Greater Boston as the 2018 Corporate Volunteer Council of the Year.
Headline speakers at the conference included Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms; Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power; Neil Bush, chairman of Points of Light’s board of directors; Parkland, Florida, student leaders Jaclyn Corin, Emma Gonzalez and Alex Wind; actress Eden Duncan-Smith; actor and recording artist Mike Ellison; storytelling activist and poet Amal Kassir; Dr. Bernice King, CEO of the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change; John Quiñones, ABC News journalist and host of “What Would You Do?”; Adam Rippon, Olympic bronze-medalist figure skater; Coty Sensabaugh, cornerback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and his wife Dominique Sensabaugh; actress, model and advocate Brooke Shields; Lilliana Vazquez, NBC contributor; and artist and poet Cleo Wade.
About Service Unites
The Service Unites conference is powered by Points of Light – the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service. Points of Light inspires, equips and mobilizes millions of people to take action that is changing the world. Through affiliates in 250 cities and partnerships with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 5 million volunteers in 20 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people to bear where it’s needed most. For more information, go to www.pointsoflight.org.
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