03/25/2019: PYN Celebrates 20 Years of Impact, Partnership and Progress

PHILADELPHIA–The Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN) is honored to celebrate 20 years of impact, partnership and progress this year. PYN is marking the milestone with a series of happenings throughout the year. On Valentine’s Day, PYN launched #20weeksofgratitude, a 20-week social media campaign that gives thanks to and highlights partners who make our work possible.

On Thursday, March 21 nearly 300 people gathered to celebrate the journey of the organization at Union Trust. The event started with a welcome from Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend, President and CEO of PYN. With a focus on gratitude, PYN held a series of toasts throughout the night, filled with appreciation, highlights and acknowledgement of PYN’s past, current partners and excitement for the future. PYN and guests toasted to:

  • The inception and PYN’s history featuring PYN founders and former leadership Stacy Holland, Melissa Orner and Laura Shubilla
  • The young people of Philadelphia featuring PYN alumna and Project U-Turn Steering Committee member, Kimberly Pham
  • Partners who support our work and create opportunities for young people featuring PYN Board Chair and President and CEO of Brown’s Super Stores, Inc., Jeffrey Brown.
  • All of the attendees who came to celebrate featuring Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend

The first three toasts were followed by the debut of a video featuring a PYN program alum and their story. Videos included:

Remarks at the event included presenting sponsors Jim Dever, Market President of Bank of America and Tuck Rainwater, Director of Government and Community Affairs at Comcast. Other sponsors included Cozen O’Connor, The ShopRite and Fresh Grocer supermarkets operated by the Brown FamilyThe Chamber of Commerce for Greater PhiladelphiaDrexel UniversityJobs for the FutureEqual MeasurePK Financial, Zateeny Loftus, LLP, Cannon Graphics and Out of the Blue Productions.

Guests enjoyed cocktails and hors d'oeuvres while networking and were able to visit the gratitude gallery which encouraged attendees to show their gratitude via a thank you note station, where they could write a brief thank you note to people who have inspired them, as well as a gratitude poster where they could write and share messages of gratitude.

“I am humbled and grateful to celebrate PYN’s 20th Anniversary this year,” said Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend. “It is a privilege to partner with so many remarkable organizations and individuals who are creating opportunities for young people and making an impact in our city. 20 years of service is a great milestone and we are excited to continue our partnerships as we look forward to what we will accomplish together in the future.”

Following the event, PYN released Snapshots (PDF), a publication of PYN alumni stories that shares the voices of individuals who participated in 20 years of PYN programs. These stories represent the impact of the nearly 200,000 experiences that have been provided to date.

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