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For Immediate Release

Contact:
May 07, 2010 DUSM Garrett Hawk, E/LA (504) 589-3131
E/LA U.S. Marshals Graduates over 100 Charter School students from its Gang Resistance education and training (G.R.E.A.T.) Program

New Orleans, LA – On Monday May 10, 2010 a graduation ceremony was held for over one-hundred 5th and 6th grade students from Martin Luther King Jr. Charter School in New Orlean’s Lower Ninth Ward. The students recently completed the Eastern District of Louisiana United States Marshals sponsored Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T) Program.

The G.R.E.A.T. Program is a school-based, law enforcement officer-instructed classroom curriculum. The program's primary objective is to reduce gang violence through classroom instruction and various learning activities. The program’s instruction focuses on helping youths avoid gang membership, prevent violence and criminal activity, develop a positive relationship with law enforcement, and teach life skills.

The event was attended by the graduates, school’s faculty, family members and some special invited guests. Some of the notable guests include: Martin Luther King Jr. Charter School Principal Dr. Doris Roche'-Hicks; United States Marshal Genny May, FBI Special Agent in Charge Dave Welker, New Orleans Police Department Director of Compliance John Bryson and Anne McKinley of the Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff’s Office.

The guest speakers for the event were Jeff Charleston, defensive end of the New Orleans Saints and Leigh Torrence, cornerback of the New Orleans Saints. The speakers provided the graduates with inspirational words as well as took pictures and signed autographs for them.

For further information about G.R.E.A.T. contact the U.S. Marshals Service E/LA at (504)589-6079 Dial 1 or visit the G.R.E.A.T. website at www.great-online.org. For further information on the U.S. Marshals Service visit www.usmarshals.gov.