Written by | Ray Cornelius 

I had the pleasure of attending the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus Annual Heritage Dinner Thursday evening. The fundraising gala recognized some of the biggest and most legendary names in theater, television and film, the visual arts and music and took place at the Thomas Murphy Ballroom at the Georgia World Congress Center in downtown Atlanta.

Claudette King, Shelia Rae Charles and Millie Jackson

Claudette King (BB King’s daughter), Millie Jackson, and Shelia Raye Charles (Ray Charles daughter)

Hosted by actor and comedian, Chris Tucker and his fiancée Fox TV News Anchor Cynne’ Simpson, the dinner raised funds for the organization’s internship, youth symposium and scholarship programs and was attended by a who’s who of Georgia politicians. The GA Black Legislative Caucus is the largest in the nation and  also has the largest student internship program.

Kenny Leon, Gloria Butler and Kwanza Hall

Kenny Leon with Senator Gloria Butler and Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall

Honorees included Steve Allen, Andre Thompson, Brenda Sigletary and Gilbert Young, BRICK, Clifford “TI” Harris, Kenny Leon, Bohannan, Will Packer, Dottie Peoples, Otis Redding, Clarence Carter, S.O.S. Band and Millie Jackson.  Iconic musicians Otis Redding, Ray Charles and James Brown, were given awards posthumously and was received by their families. Shelia Raye Charles, singer and daughter of Ray Charles, performed, a medley of her father’s famous tunes. R&B singer and actor Tony Terry also performed a single from his latest album and his classic hit, “When I’m With You.”

Kenny accpeting his award

GLBC Chair Rep. Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Kenny Leon

“We appreciate the support from our corporate sponsors and community partners, we will continue to engage in activities that educate and provide scholarships; conduct research, development and training activities; and support, sponsor, underwrite, staff and administer nonpartisan, programs that protect the general welfare of Black people, other people of color and disadvantaged citizens of Georgia,,” said GLBC Chair Rep. Dee Dawkins-Haigler.

Check out photos from the VIP reception and the dinner below:

Brick Dottie and Millie

Honorees: BRICK with Dottie Peoples and Millie Jackson

Obama art

Steve R. Allen artwork

Mayor Kasim Reed Amanda Davis and Adrion Bell

Kasim Reed (Mayor of Atlanta)/Amanda Davis (Media personality) and Adrion Bell (public official)

art 1

Steve R. Allen artwork

Myrna White and Hank Stewart

 Myrna White (Hartsfield-Jackson Airport)  and Hank Steward (Poet)

Cynne Simpson and Chris Tucker

Cynne’ Simpson and Chris Tucker 

Billy Mitchell Miranda Mack McKenzie

Rep. Billy Mitchell/Miranda Mack McKenzie (Atlanta Technical College)

Dr. Barbara King Tony Terry and Sheila Rae Charles

Rev. Dr. Barbara King /Tony Terry with Shelia Raye Charles

 And now for the awards…

Brenda Singletary

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with artist Brenda Singletary

Artist 3 Artist 2

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Gilbert Young and Andre Thompson

Bohannon Dottie People

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Bohannon and Dottie Peoples

Brick with Able Mable

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler  and  Rep. “Able” Mable Thomas with BRICK

Millie Jackson

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Millie Jackson

The Browns again

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Dr.Yamma Brown and Deanna Brown-Thomas

SOS Band

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with The S.O.S Band 

Tony Terry

Representative Dee Dawkins-Haigler with Tony Terry

Tony Terry performs Shelia Rae Charles

Tony Terry and Shelia Raye Charles performing

Will Packer accpeting his award

Will Packer accepting his award

will and tim

Filmmakers Will Packer and Tim Story

Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com