The Los Angeles Urban League recently held its 39th Whitney M. Young Jr. Awards Dinner honoring outstanding individuals as “Enduring Legacies.”

The dinner is the League’s annual fundraiser, designed to raise fundamental resources for the Neighborhoods@Work program, including educational support, economic literacy, job prep and placement, and advocacy on behalf of African Americans and other minorities.

UPS was the premier sponsor of the event this year, and the 2012 dinner chair was Noel Massie, president of the UPS Central California District. UPS has led many efforts in conjunction with the League’s Neighborhoods@Work program to ensure that students from underserved communities are exposed to critical experiences and opportunities to compete in today’s global economy.

UPS, specifically Noel Massie and George Gibbs, the regional employee relations manager, have made many far-reaching contributions to youth in the community. In addition to sponsoring the Urban Media Foundation and helping the nonprofit acquire a multi-use van, UPS along with Southwest Airlines sponsored the Crenshaw and Washington high schools’ “Schoolhouse to the White House Leadership Academy” and a trip to Sacramento to meet and visit with Mayor Kevin Johnson.

The Los Angeles Urban League also recently announced that it had chosen Massie to serve as the new chair for its board of directors. Massie, who has served on the board since October 2010, will succeed Carl Ballton, president of the Union Bank Foundation, who headed the board from October 2008 to March 2012.

Ballton is now the senior vice president within the Corporate Social Responsibility Group of Union Bank. He also serves as president and chief operating officer of the Union Bank Foundation, where he is responsible for implementing the charitable contribution policies and initiatives of both the bank and the foundation.

“UPS supports the efforts of many organizations operating in the African American communities in Los Angeles,” said Massie. “Organizations such as the Urban Media Foundation, the Los Angeles Urban League and the Brotherhood Crusade are vital. They provide direction and support to Urban America in ways only they can. In areas such as education, job training and creation and early childhood development, they excel. They, by their efforts, are creating a better community and therefore a better America.”

Honorees recognized at the awards dinner included Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, with the Community Service Award; Bet Tzedek co-founder Luis Lainer, Esq., and retired vice president of Corporate Urban Affairs for Walt Disney Co., Bob Billingslea. both of whom received the Urban League’s Lifetime Achievement Award.