"Law & Order" star Anthony Anderson will be in Annapolis on Saturday to speak at the Housing Authority's second annual Pathways to Opportunities Family Self-Sufficiency Conference.
"He's committed to the community, and he wants to support the mission of the conference," said Troupe Brooks, Anderson's publicist. "The conference is designed to uplift and encourage people ... He wants to lend his name and talent to be supportive of that mission."
The all-day conference is geared specifically toward people who live in or are considering living in public housing or public subsidized housing, said Georgia Noone-Sherrod, HACA's director. The idea is to assist these residents with both educational and job opportunities.
"We want people to know that public housing is a stop gap," Noone-Sherrod said. "We want [them] to move towards a goal of home ownership."
The all-day conference will be broken up into a series of seminars that focus on health, mental health, college, parenting, careers and apprenticeships.
Each session focuses in part on assessing what services a person or family may need to help them do things like go to college, secure a job or get access to quality medical care. Attendees are then connected with city, county and state agencies that can provide assistance.
"It's also about teaching people about making hard choices and sacrifices," Noone-Sherrod said. "Doing the the things that you have to do for a short time to get that long term gain."
The conference will be held at the Pip Moyer Community Recreation Center at 273 Hilltop Ln. from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It's free to the public, but Noone-Sherrod recommends that people register in advance.
"We can comfortably accommodate 500 people in regular seating," Noone-Sherrod said. "I get the feeling that we will have a packed house."
Anderson will be speaking at 2:15 p.m. during the seminar on health.
"He has been a spokesperson for Diabetes now for quite some time, and has worked with one of the organizations that we work with very closely," Noone-Sherrod said.
Anderson will provide some tips on being healthy and take questions from audience members.
In addition to Anderson, the luncheon keynote speaker will be Kevin Hooks, the vice president of Weber Shandwick. Other notable attendees are Mayor Josh Cohen, County Councilman Christ Traumbauer and Anne Arundel County School Board President Andrew Pruski.