Author and ‘champion of change’ will deliver keynote at re-entry conference June 8


 

Author and entrepreneur Tracey D. Syphax will deliver a keynote address June 8 at a free conference discussing re-entry to the workforce.

The Leadership & Empowerment Conference is being sponsored by the Allegheny County Anchored Re-Entry Consortium (ACAR) and the Southwestern Pennsylvania Re-Entry Coalition (SPARC), and will be held in the Foerster Student Services Center of CCAC’s Allegheny Campus on Pittsburgh’s North Side.

Syphax is the author of ”From the Block to the Boardroom,” which details his own journey from being a drug addict and dealer in Trenton, N.J., in the 1980s to his recovery and redemption as a successful real-estate developer and entrepreneur.

In 2014, Syphax was named a White House “Champion of Change” and the Empower Magazine “Person of the Year,” and in 2017, he received a full pardon for his 1990 drug conviction. He has used his new position of prominence to advocate for reforming the process by which former offenders re-enter society.

Events begin promptly at 8 a.m. and a free continental breakfast as well as lunch will be provided, but advance registration is encouraged. To register, email Deborah Mattie at dmattie@monvalleyinitiative.com, text your name and “Conference” to 412-545-3181, or call 412-464-4000, extension 4001.

The event also will include breakout sessions on entrepreneurship, fatherhood, life-coaching, knowing your legal rights and opportunities to advance your education.

In addition, representatives of more than a dozen employers, educators and social services agencies will be available to meet with, and answer questions from, the public.

Support is being provided by a CCAC Title III Learning Commons Grant and by Goodwill Industries of Southwestern Pennsylvania.

Foerster Student Services Center is located at 808 Ridge Ave., about one block north of Heinz Field and near the Allegheny Station of Port Authority’s “T.” For a map or directions, visit //goo.gl/maps/e8zPFT2kMnG

Southwestern Pennsylvania Re-Entry Coalition, or SPARC, is a project led by the Mon Valley Initiative, a community development corporation providing housing counseling, real estate and community development, and workforce and business development in Allegheny, Westmoreland and Washington counties, including from offices in Homestead and Charleroi.

Support for workforce and business development at MVI comes in part from NeighborhoodAllies, the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, The Pittsburgh Foundation, The Opportunity Fund and the DHS Community Services Block Grant Self-Sufficiency Program.