Community Briefs Dec. 13

Olandera Dunn
Olandera Dunn

PeopleShores hires Dunn as director

PeopleShores in Pine Bluff, a technology services entity, announced the appointment of Olandera Dunn of Pine Bluff as its new director, effective Dec. 18.

The PeopleShores Center in Pine Bluff is adjacent to Southeast Arkansas College. The agency is a for-profit social enterprise that brings technology-driven jobs to the "shores" of communities in the United States by building a technology and technology-enabled services business, according to a news release.

Dunn is a native of Pine Bluff, and a 2015 graduate of Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, where she completed coursework to obtain a bachelor's degree in mass media and communications. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. and is currently president of the Parent Teacher Association at Friendship Aspire Academy Pine Bluff, according to the release.

"With a proven track record of driving growth and innovation as well as trained experience in communications, radio broadcasting, community outreach, sales/marketing, public relations, event management, retail, non-profit, fundraising, and volunteer management, Dunn is poised to lead PeopleShores into a new era of continued success in Pine Bluff," according to the release.

PeopleShores has a mutually beneficial relationship for business and education programs and other wraparound support services such as childcare, training, and continuing education.

"Currently, industries supported by the center includes healthcare, financial services, insurance and education. The services provided are technical help desk, claims processing, customer call center support, IT systems support and robotic process automation (RPA) BOT Development," according to the release.

Details: or [email protected].

Alphas host financial workshop

Delta Sigma Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. held a financial literacy session Dec. 5 during Alpha Week activities. The virtual event, held via Zoom garnered attendance from DSL brothers and the community.

The purpose was to provide insights on financial literacy and empower participants with the knowledge to make informed financial decisions.

Leading the session was Alpha brother, Toney Franklin, a licensed financial advisor specializing in risk protection, investment options, and retirement planning, associated with Northwestern Mutual, according to a news release.

Franklin dove into various aspects of personal finance, emphasizing the importance of budgeting, saving, and investing wisely. He provided practical advice on building a financial foundation, maximizing investment opportunities, and effectively planning for retirement.

DSL Chapter, under the leadership of Chapter President Jackie Harris, reaffirmed their commitment to bringing financial education to the community.

Harris expressed his gratitude for Franklin's presentation.

"We are fortunate to have Brother Toney Franklin, grandson of chapter charter member, the late Brother Roger Lynn Johnson and established licensed financial advisor from Northwestern Mutual, provide invaluable insights on wealth creation and protection," Harris said.

Participants commended the chapter for organizing the event and appreciated Franklin for sharing his knowledge.

Delta food bank to hold giveaway Saturday

The Delta Network Food Bank of Pine Bluff will host its annual food giveaway from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Pine Bluff Convention Center parking lot, according to a news release.

Participants should remain in their vehicles at all times during the Drive-Thru Hunger Relief Distribution. Vehicles will line up down Eighth Avenue and drive through the north access to the Convention Center and receive the food that is available for each registered household and follow the instructions of the traffic directors. Registration forms will be available on site.

Tyson Foods will donate a truckload of chicken to help people in need. The Delta Regional Community Services Outreach Network Inc. and its Delta Network Food Bank are Tyson Foods Community Partners and will be coordinating the event as well as providing food as a part of their hunger relief program. Sponsors also include United Way of Southeast Arkansas.

Financial donations are also accepted. Donors may make checks payable to Delta Network, Inc. P.O. Box 20278, White Hall, AR, 71612, or Cash App: $DeltaNetwork. Delta Network is a 501C3 tax exempt non-profit organization. All donations are tax deductible. Louis Ross is the chief executive officer of the Delta Network Inc. and Jacqueline Ross is the director. Details: (870) 536-2424.

New Hope to give away food

The pantry ministry of New Hope Missionary Baptist Church at Moscow will sponsor a food giveaway at noon Friday. Participants are asked to bring a photo ID.

"Come let us be a blessing to you for the holiday season," a spokesman said.

PB school board to meet

The Pine Bluff School Board will meet at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 18 in the district's Jordan-Chanay Building, 1215 W. Pullen St. Details: (870) 543-4203.

JRMC sets blood drive

Jefferson Regional Medical Center will host a blood drive from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Dec. 21 at the south classrooms 2 and 3. A photo ID is required, according to a news release.

Walk-ins are welcome, however to make appointments, call 877-340-8777 or visit the Our Blood Institute website at

  photo  Toney Franklin

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