Shortly after I moved to Little Rock, I was asked by a friend and then co-worker to join the committee for the Red Jacket Ball. It was the first year that City Year, an arm of Americorps, had been in Little Rock and it was the first annual ball. Working with the committee and the City Year corps members, I learned a lot and saw Little Rock’s charitable and non-profit community in a new light. It was energetic, young and it was fun. I met dozens of friendly, eager people who were determined to make a difference in the youth in Little Rock and improve the education of as many young kids as possible through this program. City Year is inspiring and I love that it’s a part of the city I live in.

This year, my friend and assistant, Rachel, has been serving as a corps member for the past 10 months. She asked me a few months ago to come and take some photos of her fellow corps members and the kids they work with. I did and I loved it. It was inspiring to see young people helping young people. Corps members really make a difference in these kids’ lives and it shows in their test scores, their personalities and their attitudes toward life and school. I was asked to attend the Red Jacket Ball and to take photos of the event and the Governor, who received an honorary red jacket that evening. It was a pleasure documenting such a great event and capturing some genuine smiles and hugs between the Governor and the First Lady.

The silent auction was full of goodies, including artwork and jewlery. Gotta love a great set of pearls from Sissy’s!

General Wesley Clark helped introduce the Governor. He is always so inspiring to hear speak!

I adore this moment between the Governor and First Lady on stage just after they received their jackets. It’s always nice to see the human moments in between.