6:00 PM18:00

2017 Cultural Gala & Village Leader Awards

  • Renaissance Providence Downtown Hotel (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Highlights of the evening will include an elegant African-inspired dinner filled with music, dancing, a fashion show, and a live auction. The event's theme is "Bringing the Village Together!" In today's world where the discourse is more divisive than inclusive, HGI hopes to bring people together from diverse backgrounds to learn from and celebrate with one another. The evening will focus on the (VLA) where four outstanding leaders in the community will be recognized for their dedication and work impacting the African community.

Your attendance and support helps Higher Ground serve the people of West Africa, both here in our local RI communities and in West African villages. We hope you will join us at this momentous gala, supporting and bringing together community right here in Rhode Island.

Download the invitation flyer.

About the Event

Event's MC – Mike Ritz

Mike Ritz

Mike Ritz

Mike Ritz joins Higher Ground International as Emcee for this year's 2017 5th Annual Cultural Gala & Village Leader Awards.  He has been the executive director of Leadership Rhode Island since 2009, after serving two years on the organization’s board of governors. Over the past 20 years, he has served as a tri-lingual interrogator in the U.S. Army, established his first corporation by the age of 25, motivated people to excel at his fitness Boot Camps in Boston and Philadelphia, and served as the New England regional manager for an international health care company based in the United Arab Emirates. He also was an on-call analyst for CNN. Recently, Mike became a founding member of the Providence Cultural Equity Initiative where he serves as the volunteer Director of Cultural Food Initiatives.

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