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Motivational seminar held at Halifax County High School


“What do I do now?” was the theme of the motivational seminar held by the South Boston/Halifax County and Danville Community College Alliance for Excellence on Saturday morning at Halifax County High School.

The event was open to students in grade 6-12 and also to adults.

The Honorable Alonzo L. Jones of Danville City Council was the guest speaker for the event. He shared how he overcame his circumstances and struggles to get where he is today.

 Sandy Saunders, project coordinator of the Danville Community College Alliance for Excellence, introduced Jones.

  According to Saunders, Jones was elected to Danville City Council in 2011 and received an education from Danville Public Schools before serving in the Armed Forces for six years.

  Jones is currently employed at Averett University and has served as the vice chairman on the City of Danville’s Social Services Advisory Board from 2000-2009.  He also was appointed by Governor Mark Warner to the state daycare council from 2004-2008 and has served as vice president of EQUS, Inc. from 2006-2008.

Jones is also a board member of the Womack Foundation and co-facilitator of enrollment services at Averett. He was appointed to the BB&T Advisory Board in 2009 and has served on the board of directors for the Museum of the Arts.

 Jones is the founder and president of One Unlimited Inc. and was elected to the Danville School Board in 2006.

He shared with the audience his experience of running for city council in 2010 having already been on the school board six years when he decided to run for council.

 “I felt that after six years I had earned the respect and the loyalty of the people in the community,” Jones said.

However, after making the decision to run for city council, Jones said he was shocked to find out he didn’t have the support that he thought he had.

 He said some of the pastors in Danville judged him because he had a child out of wedlock, and they did not want to endorse him.

 “Yes it’s true young people I was raised in the projects. My mother worked in the tobacco factory, and my father worked at Danville Golf Club serving drinks,” Jones said.

 “My father paved the way for me to sit in that golf club for those people to wait on me,” Jones said.

He also informed members of the audience that very same child he had out of wedlock graduated in December from Averett University on the dean’s list with a degree in biomedical sciences and is on her way to medical school to become a doctor.

He said he never asked for any government assistance to help raise his daughter working three jobs to make ends meet, and he has helped to raise other young people in the community also.

Through all his experiences and ups and downs, Jones said he has learned to look for “peculiar people” in life.

 Jones said “peculiar people” don’t talk about other people because we all have sinned. He told the audience to move away from people who want to talk about others but never want to talk about themselves.

Also during the seminar Saturday morning, the Rev. William J.  Coleman of Tri-County Community Action presented the money management seminar designed to help attendees make better decisions in managing their money.

 Minister Kimberley Barnes, a case manager for Tri-County Community Action Domestic Violence Program, presented a “Healthy Relationships” seminar, which explained the signs and red flags of an abusive and unhealthy relationship.

Deputy T. H. Clarke of the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office presented a session on “Cyberspace,” warning of dangers in putting personal information on social networking sites and being aware of scams in the area.

Barbara Coleman-Brown was the presenter for the “Leaving the Nest” seminar, which explained what it truly means to be grown.