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Gordon-Booth Connects High School Girls to Mentorship, Service Opportunities through “Annie’s Girls”

Young women from local high schools connected with community leaders last week at a kick-off Meet and Greet for “Annie’s Girls,” a mentorship program launched by state Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth, D-Peoria.

“The young ladies who are participating in Annie’s Girls were chosen because they’ve displayed a commitment to helping others and becoming positive leaders in their communities,” Gordon-Booth said. “Annie’s Girls is an opportunity for these high schoolers to build relationships with dynamic women who are making a difference right here in Peoria.”

In memory of Gordon-Booth’s mother, community leader Annie Jo Gordon, “Annie’s Girls” connects each participant with a local mentor to provide encouragement, job shadowing opportunities and career advice. The program also sponsors each participant’s high school junior or senior prom.

“Without a doubt, I would not be who I am today without the wisdom and support of the strong women who mentored me throughout my life,” Gordon-Booth said. “Mentorship is a cycle; the experiences and knowledge held by the amazing women who’ve volunteered as mentors for Annie’s Girls will help shape the next generation of leaders in our community.”

The following young women were chosen to participate in Annie’s Girls: Tyjionna Irby from Manual High School, Taylor Allen from Peoria Heights High School, Ravie Boungou from Richwood High School, Chesica Doss from Quest Charter School, Dominique Williams from Peoria High School and Catherine Oliver from Peoria Notre Dame High School.

Mentors for the program are: Dr. Rita Ali, Judge Alicia Washington, Mrs. Katie Arnholt-Kim, 1st Lady Marcia Bolden, Peoria County Deputy Ronda Guyton, Dr. Sharon Desmoulin-Kherat, Councilwoman Beth Jensen, Mrs. Dawn Harris Jeffries, and Ms. Erica Baird.