13:52 PM

Houston's Citizenship Month Opens at the Asia Society

Citizenship Month Houston 2014 Asia Society 

Approximately 300 Houstonians gathered Friday night for a celebration of culture at the opening event of Citizenship Month 2014 at the Asia Society Texas Center.

Guests were treated to a musical performance by Virtuosi of Houston while they enjoyed hors d'oeuvres and the "Global Art, Local Color" art display, including the work of 24 local artists, prior to the program.

UHD alumnus Anthony Bogess-Glover sang the Star Spangled Banner to kick off the event, and the United Nations International Choir and the Kuja Kim Korean Dancers also performed.

Cynthia Cisneros with ABC - Channel 13 and Grace Olivares with Univision co-emceed the event, which included greetings from Houston's First Lady Kathy Hubbard and UHD President Bill Flores, who both serve as honorary chairs of Citizenship Month. Hubbard presented the inaugural Citizenship Month Outstanding Service Award to Jeanne Haner for her civic leadership and volunteer efforts for the annual initiative.

Noted sociologist Dr. Stephen Klineberg provided the keynote address, providing highlights of his new research, "Shared Prospects: Hispanics and the Future of Houston."

Citizenship Month -Asia Society - Dean Van Horn Dean of the UHD College of Public Service, Leigh Van Horn, presented awards to local elementary school students who participated in the city's "Citizenship Month Writing Project with Schools."

Leigh Van Horn, interim dean of the College of Public Service, presented awards to local elementary school students who participated in the city's, "Citizenship Month Writing Project with Schools." As a part of this literacy project, these young students were encouraged to write their own poetry reflecting where they come from, who they are, and how they fit in and contribute to the citizenry of Houston.

Mark Cervenka, Director of the O`Kane Gallery, curated an exhibit of international art which will be on display in the City Hall Annex building throughout the month. The mayor's assistant for cultural affairs, Minnette Boesel, commended the artists for their work.

UHD's Noël Bezette-Flores, executive director of the Center for Public Service and Family Strengths, and Claudia Ortega-Hogue, Texas and southwest regional director of civic engagement at NALEO Educational Fund, are co-chairs for the month-long Citizenship Month celebration.

Citizenship Month - Group with Dr. Flores