Dowd Bennett Partner Gabriel Gore Serves as Co-chair for the St. Louis American’s 2010 Salute to Excellence in Education

2010 Salute to Education: Young Leaders Keep Tradition Relevant

2010 Salute Co-Chairs
By Andrew Fowler
For The St. Louis American

The Salute to Excellence in Education Co-chairs are four young St. Louis leaders who have focused much of their energy on promoting the importance of education.

Anisha Morrell-Charles is special assistant to the Chancellor of St. Louis Community College. She is a member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and co-founding chair of the Young Leader Society for United Way of Greater St. Louis.

“In order to drive economic development and talent acquisition, education is the catalyst in the region. In order to build and grow this region, we must start first and end with education,” Morrell-Charles said.

Gabriel Gore is partner with Dowd Bennett LLP, practicing complex civil litigation and white-collar defense. He has served as president for the St. Louis Public Library Board of Directors since 2006 and is founding board chairman for the Kipp: Inspire Academy Charter School.

Gore said, “I think President Obama recently said, ‘Educating our children is our number one economic issue and our number one security issue.’”

Michael Kennedy Jr. is the president of the architectural firm KAI Design and Build. He serves as a big brother in Big Brother Big Sister of Eastern Missouri and is on the board of Voices for Children, which provides legal representation for children in the foster care system.

“We must understand the importance of education when it comes to crime, joblessness, and kids with low self-esteem,” Kennedy said.

Robert Crumpton is director of global diversity and inclusion for Monsanto. He is part of the Young Leaders Society for United Way, a member of the Development Board for Kid Smart and a board member for Youth in Need.

“Education is not only the catalyst, it’s essential to economic growth of this country,” Crumpton said, “Without education at the highest level we come to a place where we may not be the competitive force that we are today.”

As part of their mission, the co-chairs helped brainstorm ways to get young leaders involved with the Salute to Excellence in Education.

Kennedy said, “The younger generation can show how to relate to kids, and we need the older generation’s wisdom and resources.”

Morrell-Charles said, “Our challenge is: How do we continue that legacy which honors tradition and makes it relevant for this generation and for generations to come?”

“What teachers do everyday is what makes them true heroes,” Gore said. “I think it’s great that there’s a night to set aside where we honor what’s going right in education.”

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