Commerce Employees Commit Time to DC Youth for MBK Initiative


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Department of Commerce employees prepare to attend the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Initiative Volunteer Recruitment Fair on August 17, 2016
Department of Commerce employees prepare to attend the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Initiative Volunteer Recruitment Fair on August 17, 2016

With the busy schedules of today, it is hard to imagine being able to do more than work, eat and sleep. Yet, this month, nearly fifty (50) Department of Commerce (DOC) employees from twelve (12) bureaus committed to volunteering their time and talents to Washington, DC area youth at the My Brother's Keeper (MBK) Initiative Volunteer Recruitment Fair at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. For several hours, Commerce staff spoke with representatives from more than 40 volunteer organizations about local volunteer opportunities to benefit young men and boys of color.

Prior to attending the fair, two leaders of the MBK initiative at DOC — Tiffani Long of the Economic Development Administration and Aaron Jenkins of the Commerce Center for Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships — brought together a diverse group of their colleagues to express their thanks and give everyone the opportunity to personally share their personal definitions of mentorship and what inspired them to volunteer.  The group shared powerful reflections as each person identified the reason they sought to volunteer to help others.  

Also joining the group in conversation was Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews, DOC Chief of Staff Jim Hock, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development and Commerce MBK Ambassador Jay Williams, and Senior Advisor to the Secretary Kate McAdams. All advocates for volunteerism, they shared their own personal stories of service and the significance of the DOC team’s commitment to volunteer with youth in DC.

Following the meeting, the group proceeded to the volunteer recruitment fair where they sought organizations that matched their time commitment and skillset. The Department of Commerce had one of the largest groups of volunteers at the fair, reflecting the true spirit of service shared across the department.

In 2014, President Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper initiative to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color, and to ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.

Through this initiative, the administration is joining with cities and towns, businesses, and foundations who are taking important steps to connect young people to mentoring, support networks, and the skills they need to find a good job or go to college and work their way into the middle class.

Interested in joining this Commerce MBK volunteer group? For more information, contact the Commerce Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at    

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Last updated: 2016-08-31 10:36

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