Three Rivers Youth will honor five recipients with the 2017 Nellie Leadership Award, which this year focuses on the family.
The nonprofit child welfare agency has selected these honorees to receive the award: the family of Cecelia Trower Epperson, the Cindy and Murry Gerber Foundation, Ruth Richardson, Gregory Spencer and Janet Spencer, and Curtis K. Williams Sr.
"With our ongoing commitment to strengthening communities, Three Rivers Youth is focusing this year's awards on the community's core — the family, in all of its modern shapes, colors, and compositions," president and CEO Peggy B. Harris said in a statement. "In a variety of models, our honorees are proven exemplars of family empowerment.”
The honorees will receive their awards May 12 at a black-tie dinner at the Twentieth Century Club in Oakland.
Cecelia Trower Epperson taught for many years in the Pittsburgh Public Schools and also was a partner in a family-owned business, Trower Cleaners, Shirt Laundry, and Monogramming Service. She and her husband, the late David Epperson, a retired dean of the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work, are the parents of Lia Epperson, a professor and senior associate dean at American University, and Sharon Epperson, the senior energy and personal finance correspondent at CNBC.
The Cindy and Murry Gerber Foundation helps children, teens and adults and supports educational, cultural, athletic and social organizations that improve the community. Murry Gerber is a retired after serving as executive chairman, chairman, president and CEO of EQT Corp. His wife, Cindy Gerber, has been a partner in law firms in the Pittsburgh area and a public defender in Allegheny County.
Ruth Richardson has served as executive director of Three Rivers Youth, helping to transform the organization into what it is today. She is also recognized as a watercolor artist.
Gregory Spencer owns Randall Industries, and Janet Spencer, also of Randall Industries, is a civic leader. Both are involved volunteer.
Curtis K. Williams Sr. works with Three Rivers Youth and is an adoptive parent.
The Nellie awards are named for Nellie Grant, a 4-year-old orphan who was the first resident of the Home for Colored Children, which was founded in 1880 and eventually became Three Rivers Youth.
For tickets to the 2017 Nellie Leadership Awards Gala, to donate or for information: 412-441-5020 or wwwthreeriversyouth.org.