]BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. – Sept. 30, 2015 — The 26th Annual Tribute to Heroes and Legends (HAL) was held September 27th, at the Beverly Hills Hotel, and the event honored a bevy of musical icons including Bobby Brown, El DeBarge, and Dennis Edwards of the Temptations. The awards dinner is a yearly fundraiser to provide scholarships for talented young performers and artists. The organization awarded the HAL Ronald White Memorial Scholarship (named after the late vocalist from the Miracles) to 17-year-old Heather Faulkner, a talented young student of the BYU Independent Study High School Advanced Program.
“What an amazing night,” exclaimed the young vocalist. “Not only did I receive a scholarship from the HAL Awards Foundation to help me continue my musical education, but this event was a wonderful experience for me. I was able to see so many famous music legends such as Smokey Robinson, Berry Gordy, Bobby Brown, El DeBarge and so many other talented artists and writers. Attending the HAL Awards was definitely, one of the coolest experiences of my life.”
The Heroes and Legends (HAL) Scholarship Foundation was created by Janie Bradford, celebrated songwriter and Motown alum. With Berry Gordy, she co-wrote “Money (That’s What I Want),” a song that was covered by numerous artists including Barrett Strong, who had the original hit, The Beatles, Willie Nelson and The Rolling Stones. She also wrote “Too Busy Thinking About My Baby” for Marvin Gaye and “Your Old Standby” for Mary Wells. She was a fixture at Motown for more than 25 years.
“Our goal is to assist talented young people in the community realize lofty, but attainable dreams and help them shape careers for themselves in one of the many performing arts,” explains Bradford. “We do this by providing much needed scholarship funds. Each year our scholarship awardees are selected from a diverse group of candidates who are achieving consistently in academics and exhibit an extraordinary amount of talent, drive and determination.”
Faulkner, who will be attending the world renowned Renee Grant-Williams Vocal Studio in Nashville, is already generating quite a huge buzz since she was featured in the popular internet series, “Waking Up In America.” Since appearing on the show, she has been asked to perform as part of the IndieCares Concert Series, the Hollywood Meets Nashville Grammy Benefit Gala and performed for the Governor and his wife at the “Tennessee Waltz” fundraiser for the Tennessee State Museum. The talented teenager even has a residency at Valentino’s, an upscale restaurant on Nashville’s West End.
She was right at home on the HAL Awards’ red carpet with the evening’s honorees, including Brown, The Dramatics featuring LJ Reynolds, Brenda Holloway, Tony Toni Tonè, DeBarge, Universal executive, Andy Skurow, Jazz stylist, Barbara Morrison and Edwards. Other attendees included Ray Parker, Jr., who hosted the event, Thelma Houston, Tommy Davidson, Marla Gibbs, Billy Vera, Smokey Robinson, James Reynolds of “Days of Our Lives,” Lenny Williams from Tower of Power and Mr. Berry Gordy.
Faulkner shared her appreciation of this esteemed honor with words thanks to her parents, Mrs. Gloria White, (Ronald White’s widow), Mr. Gordy and Ms. Janie Bradford.