MOKAN Honors 2023 Awardees

Thomas Nellums, Sr. and Yaphett El-Amin will announce the recipients of the MOKAN 49th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Dinner to be held on November 17th at the Renaissance St. Louis Airport Hotel.

Thomas Nellums, Sr., Yaphett El-Amin to Announce the Recipients presented at the MOKAN 49th Anniversary Celebration and Awards Dinner to be held at 6:00 p.m. on November 17 at the Renaissance St. Louis Airport Hotel. The Dinner Theme is “Transforming Communities Through Construction and Development.”

To purchase tickets as well as tributes and advertisements for inclusion in the dinner program book, contact MOKAN at 314-454-9675 or visit the MOKAN website: MOKAN is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization. Contributions are tax deductible to the extent of the law.

Several individuals and outstanding majority and minority businesses in the construction and development industry will receive awards. Eddie Hasan, former MOKAN President and CEO, will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award; The St. Louis Cardinals and Cornish Companies, Refuge and Restoration and Wright Construction will receive the Developer of the Year Award for the development and construction of Ballpark Village, R&R Marketplace, and St. Louis County Police Precinct #3, Respectfully. Lindell Bank and Enterprise Bank & Trust will receive the Financial Institution of the Year Award; Keith Wolkoff, former President, PARIC Corporation, will receive the Private Sector Executive of the Year Award; Marie K. Yancey, Contract Compliance Officer, St. Louis Lambert International Airport, will receive the Public Sector Executive of the Year Award.

ACE Service Experts LLC, Andre Castro-Lester, Owner, will receive the MBE Contractor of the Year Award; Hillsdale Demolition Contracting LLC, Lakkia Davis-Hynes, Owner, will receive the WBE Contractor of the Year Award; Cherokee Hauling, Mike Tallis, Managing Owner, will receive the Emerging Business of the Year Award.

The Annual Awards Dinner is MOKAN’S only major fundraising event to support continued funding for students in MOKAN’S Pre-Apprenticeship Training Program and MOKAN’S Business Institute Program.

Proceeds also assist MOKAN\ in furthering its efforts to increase the number of qualified MBE and WBE contractors and workers as well as to increase the number of public and private dollars spent with them.

Members of the Dinner Planning Committee include April Hendricks-Brown, MoDOT; Charles Henson, BJC HealthCare; Francoise Lyles- Wiggins, St. Louis Lambert International Airport; Shonnah Paredes, St. Louis Metropolitan Sewer District; Marla Roach, St. Louis Development Corporation; Trinnea Russell, St. Louis County Government; Orlando Williams, Lou Brock Mechanical Contracting; Dorrie Wise-Harris, D&K Welding Services, Inc.

Since 1974, MOKAN Construction and Contractors Assistance Center (MOKANCCAC) has been at the forefront of efforts to provide opportunities for MBE and WBE contractors on construction projects in the St. Louis metropolitan area.

MOKAN works diligently with owners and majority contractors to develop strategies for increased diversity on public and private projects. Daily, MOKAN opens its doors to local workers and minority and female businesses for educational and training services.

MOKAN’S BUSINESS INSTITUTE PROGRAM is an education and training academy delivering workshops, seminars and industry-specific training to minority contractors. Sessions are facilitated by professionals with the training, certification and experience in each specific subject area.

MOKAN’S PRE-APPRENTICESHIP TRAINING PROGRAM is specifically designed with industry-based training coupled with classroom instruction to prepare non-traditional construction workers to enter and succeed within a Registered Apprenticeship Union or Non-Union Program.\

Nominate a Doer: To keep readers informed on who’s who in the community, Shirley A. Brown’s column highlights a community “Doer” each week. A “Doer” is an individual or organization committed to making St. Louis a better place to live and work. Readers are invited to send “Doer” recommendations to or contact Ms. Brown at 314-367-8739.


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