By JoAnn Fields
Contributing Writer

San Diego, CA: The Jack & Jill of America Inc. Far West Region hosted the 60th Annual Teen Conference and Graduates’ Ball the weekend of June 26th in San Diego, CA. Under the leadership of Co-Chairpersons, Pamela Gray Payton and Connie Gibson ​,​ the 2014 Teen Conference became a memorable experience for hundreds of young people representing Anchorage, Alaska; Contra Costa, Fresno, Greater Vallejo, Inglewood, Inland Empire, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Orange County, Pasadena, Phoenix, Arizona; Pomona, Sacramento, San Diego, San Fernando Valley, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Washington; Tacoma, Tri-Valley and Tucson, Arizona.

“Jack and Jill of America is the premier African American family organization with almost 250 chapters, in 35 states, representing 30,000 family members. As Mothers Members of the organization, we continue our dedication to children. Through education, training, service and legislative advocacy, we prepare children for future success. We passionately believe that given opportunity, guidance and training, all children can become leaders,” states Kathy Chappell Dossett, 21st Regional Director, Far West Region.

“For decades, teens in the Far West Region have gathered to share ideas and build long-lasting bonds. This year’s theme, “The World is Ours, So Let’s Take It” is a positive, proactive theme that perfectly compliments our national theme of “Power Potential”. My personal congratulations to the 2014 graduates of the Fabulous Far West Region. You exemplify the very best qualities we embrace. Your parents have made a significant investment in your future and we are confident that you will demonstrate the leadership and character required to realize your full potential,” shares Tamara Turnly, 23rd National President, Jack & Jill of America Inc.

Co-Chairpersons Pamela Gray Payton and Connie Gibson planned a 3-day Teen Conference that included motivational workshops, competitions and overnight stay on the UCSD campus, a graduates’ ball at the Wyndham by the Bay hotel and volunteering in the Tijuana River Valley to help remove tons of trash that would have its way to San Diego’s beaches. For more information regarding the Jack and Jill of American organization visit their website at www.jackandjillinc.org.

Photos by JoAnn Fields