Taylor man presented with award at recognition event

By Evelyn Cairns
The Best of the Safety Net Award was presented to Jeffrey Durr, of Taylor, food distribution director and business-employment specialist with The Information Center, Dec. 2 at the Detroit Wayne County Health Authority’s annual volunteer recognition luncheon.

Durr has been providing a safety net of food and assistance to more than 400 low-income families, seniors, the unemployed and others in need through a program he developed in 1998.

He is responsible for organizing the monthly food-distribution program at the Taylor Human Services Center, ordering food, planning distribution and managing volunteers.

Durr is known as a man with purpose, passion and a heart for serving his community.

He says that the program assists people of all social classes, white collar, blue collar, and the handi-capped, as well as seniors and the unemployed, Hispanics, Asians, African Americans and Caucasians.

“I can assure you that no one is turned away,” he says.

Ed D’Angelo, CEO of The Information Center, says that the award winner has exemplified collaboration and caring, and demonstrates, on a daily basis, what it takes to create a sense of community.

The Information Center, at 20500 Eureka Road in Taylor, is a non-profit organization that serves the Downriver and surrounding community by providing free comprehensive information and referral services in addition to assistance to the unemployed and services for seniors and the disabled.

It also provides support and training for caregivers and help in understanding eligibility for public benefits and human services.

Junior Division contest added
The third annual Downriver Idol contest of the Southern Great Lakes Symphony Orchestra will for the first time feature a Junior Division competition with its own finals.

Preliminary rounds in the contest will begin on Jan. 13 and conclude with finals during the SGLS “Fantasia” concert Feb. 26 at the Flat Rock Community Auditorium.

According to a SGLS spokesman, contestants must sing at one of three preliminary auditions a cappella or with their own accompanists, or make arrangements with the SGLS for an accompanist. Karaoke-style auditions with backing tracks also will be acceptable, the spokesman said.

Preliminary auditions will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. Jan. 13 at the Woodhaven Best Western (karaoke style); 1 to 3 p.m. Jan. 14 at Southland Mall; and 1 to 3 p.m. Jan. 15 at the Wyandotte Arts Center.

Junior and senior semifinals will be held at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 3 at the Flat Rock auditorium.

Junior finals are slated for 7:30 p.m. Feb.10 at the auditorium. Senior finals are scheduled for Feb. 26 at the auditorium with the orchestra.

All types of music are acceptable in the three-minute auditions, the spokesman said, adding that pre-registration at www.sgls.org and a $5 free are re-quired.

Tickets for the Feb. 3 semifinals and Feb. 10 junior finals are $5 ($10 for premium seating). Senior final tickets (part of the Feb. 26th concert) are $25. Additional information is available by calling the SGLS at 734-246-2890 or going to www.sgls.org.