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Los Angeles Entrepreneur Michael Ferrera named 3rd place winner of Cricket Community Stars

Russell Hicks (center) of Ebony Suns Enterprises is named 1st-place winner in the Cricket Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs contest. Hicks is joined by Cricket store staff and supporter Jon McKay during a Small Business Saturday celebration.

Russell Hicks (center) of Ebony Suns Enterprises is named 1st-place winner in the Cricket Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs contest. Hicks is joined by Cricket store staff and supporter Jon McKay during a Small Business Saturday celebration.

Russell Hicks of Ebony Suns Enterprises Named Grand Prize Winner of the Cricket Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs Contest

Receives more than $5,000 in cash and mobility prizes,

incl. a Samsung Galaxy S 5

ATLANTA, GA–Cricket Wireless announces Russell Hicks, founder of Ebony Suns Enterprises in Philadelphia as the grand prize winner of its Cricket Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs contest. Launched in October of 2014, the contest recognizes solo entrepreneurs who make it a priority to provide positive contributions to the community.

“We are pleased to recognize Russell Hicks as the first Cricket Community Star and congratulate the other finalists who are committed to building both their brand and community,” says Jermaine Spight, Senior Public Relations Manager, Cricket Wireless. “Cricket Wireless is a community brand that supports organizations making a difference in the neighborhoods where our customers live, work and play.”

Through Ebony Suns Enterprises, Hicks provides sustainable business consulting to individuals and organizations, and actively contributes to the community by mentoring urban youth and creating social entrepreneurship programs.  He currently works with more than 75 young entrepreneurs through various green industry sectors including eco-tourism, sustainable real estate, organic apparel design and merchandising. As grand prize winner, Hicks will receive $5,000, and one year of complimentary service on Cricket’s reliable, nationwide 4G LTE network.

Finalists Zondra Hughes, founder of Six Brown Chicks, and Michael Ferrera, founder of Michael Ferrera Custom Clothing were awarded 2nd- and 3rd-place prize packages and will respectively receive $2,500 and six months of complimentary service, and $1,000 and three months of complimentary service from Cricket.

Additionally, Hicks, Hughes and Ferrera will each receive a Samsung Galaxy S® 5 courtesy of Samsung Telecommunications America. The Samsung Galaxy S 5 delivers simplified control and experiences on a brilliant 5.1-inch display, a 16 megapixel rear- facing camera, lightning fast data connections, and health and wellness monitoring to help solopreneurs stay connected to their world, community, friends and family at home or on the go.

“Samsung is proud to join Cricket Wireless in recognizing true community stars,” says Steven Schultz, National Sales Manager, Samsung Telecommunications America. “We hope that the Samsung Galaxy S 5 devices help these entrepreneurs stay connected in business and with their communities.”

The Cricket Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs contest was open to residents of Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. All entries were reviewed and evaluated by Cricket before being narrowed down to three finalists who recorded video entries which were uploaded to the Cricket YouTube channel for further social media engagement. Finally, a panel of judges reviewed the finalists’ entries and chose Cricket’s 1st-, 2nd- and 3rd-place winners.


About Cricket Wireless

Cricket is bringing consumers more value with a simple, friendly, and reliable nationwide wireless experience with no annual contract.  The power of Cricket is our fast, reliable, nationwide 4G LTE network; easy and affordable unlimited plans with taxes and fees included; annual loyalty rewards; and a great selection of phones customers love. Cricket, Something to Smile About.  Cricket is a subsidiary of AT&T Inc.

Samsung and Galaxy S are all trademarks of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

A Servant Heart Outreach

The 14th Annual Christmas Outreach was held on Friday, December 19 at a Servant Heart Outreach in San Bernardino  where 3,800 children received toys with special help and donations from 29 Palms Marine Corps Toys for Tots, Nestle, Stater Bros., Elegant Shoe Collections, San Bernardino County School District, and the Pacific High School Cheerleaders.

There were also Christmas characters that included Santa Clause, the Red Queen of Wonderland, the Mad Hatter, and the White Queen of Wonderland.

Holiday Cheer Brought to Families Through Adopt-a-Missionary ‘Giving to a Giver’ Project

Bringing Holiday Cheer to Others Giving Overseas.  Loma Linda University Health employee Karen Westphal holds a package that she and her husband filled with Christmas goodies for their adopted missionary family.

Bringing Holiday Cheer to Others Giving Overseas. Loma Linda University Health employee Karen Westphal holds a package that she and her husband filled with Christmas goodies for their adopted missionary family.

LOMA LINDA, CA- This year, the second annual Adopt-a-Missionary Christmas project is connecting 15 missionary families with various groups and individuals in the Loma Linda community.  Christmas cheer is being spread throughout the world in the form of large flat-rate postal boxes.

The Loma Linda University Health (LLUH) Global Health Institute (GHI), in collaboration with Students for International Mission Service (SIMS), organized the project for the first time in 2013. The project received so much support that they decided to continue it this year.

The missionaries include LLUH alumni, global service awardees (GSAs), deferred mission appointees (DMAs), and Adventist Health International (AHI) long-term volunteers who are working overseas at LLUH strategic interest sites as dentists, hospital administrators, nurses, public health educators, and more.

Rainey Davis, a LLUH student, class of 2016, decided to sponsor one of the missionary families with the help of her own family back home in Washington state.  After serving as a student missionary, Davis reflected on the fact that it meant a lot to her knowing that people still cared about her even though she was far away.

“I just remember it was so nice to get something that reminded me of home,” Davis said.   “Even if I couldn’t use the gifts myself, I knew that I could give them to someone else in my village, and they would appreciate it.”

Angeli Yutuc, program manager of international service at GHI, coordinated the project and mentioned that this year, even more than last, the collaboration across campus has been inspiring. In addition to individual sponsors, LLUH departments and groups of students chose to adopt many of the mission families. When the boxes were filled, these sponsors were still asking how they could continue to give more.

Jackie Aitchison, an employee in Loma Linda University Health’s Risk Management unit, sponsored four boxes with her department and said the only complaint was that the boxes were too small.

“Several of us came to work and realized we had completely filled the boxes with presents for the children before we were even done shopping for the entire families,” Aitchison remarked.  “So we are actually sending an additional box to one of our sites.”

“It’s nice to see the campus come together and support our international projects and volunteers,” Yutuc shared.  “It gives them a little glimpse of the people serving abroad that our office is connected with on a daily basis.  It certainly helps our volunteers to feel valued and remembered during the holiday season when they are not necessarily able to be with family or go home for the holidays.”

To learn more about the project for next year, please visit lluglobal.com/adopt or contact Angeli Yutuc at 909-558-4876 or ayutuc@llu.edu.