YDM 18th Anniversary
H I S T O R Y
( JACKIE SMITH & DIVINITY)
Jackie Smith and Divinity, a gospel ensemble, founded by Ms. Jackie Smith in November of 1984, debuted in March of 1985 .
They shared their many blessings through several community programs such as singing for the elderly in area nursing homes, "Operation Read", "Hands Across America", and an annual food drive during Thanksgiving and Christmas.
They traveled extensively all across the United States. In 1996 Jackie traveled to Paris, France with Dr. Bobby Jones & New Life. They recorded their first album, "DANCE IN ADVANCE" in 1980 and their second project, a CD, "HE'S DONE ENOUGH" was released in 1997.
Musical accolades include: Texas Artist of the Year in 1998; Texas Gospel Awards' New Group of the Year in 1999 and in 2000 they were voted Texas Gospel Awards Group of the Decade.
Having worked with area youth, they received their 501 (c) (3) in youth development, thus the birth of YDM.
To everything there is a season; a time to begin and a time to end. As Ms. Jackie bids farewell to Divinity at their 18th anniversary in November 2003, she carries the torch and a wonderful legacy to YDM.
B I O
( YDM )
The ministry of YDM began in May 2000 when Jackie Smith, then founder of Jackie Smith and Divinity, received a 501 (c)(3) status in youth development, because of their work with area youth. Realizing the gifts and talents God had given these young people, Jackie envisioned a choir, thus, the birth of the music ministry of YDM (Youth Development Ministry).
Operation Cover-Up", a project that donate blankets, throws, coats, socks and jackets to those who are affected or infected by homelessness in Houston. A "Toy Drive " in 2005, sponsored by Congresswoman, Shelia Jackson Lee, after which they began and continues to sponsor their own Toy Drive each Christmas;
Their travel abroad has taken them to Austin, Dallas, Killeen and San Antonio, Texas; Monroe and Shreveport, Louisiana; Dalton and Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, N. Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; Orlando & Miami Beach, Florida; Las Vegas, Nevada, Los Angeles & San Francisco, California. While in Orlando, Florida, they sung at Epcot Center for Disney World Gospel Choir Fest and attended "Night of Joy" at Magic Kingdom. Their first local TV appearance was on Houston's Fox 26 and they made two television appearances on Bobby Jones Gospel, once in Nashville, Tennessee and once in Miami Beach, Florida, both shows have aired on The Word Network. They made three appearances on the syndicated Reggie Gay Gospel Show, WATC in Atlanta, Georgia and recently sung at The City of Refuge, Bishop Noel Jones, Pastor.
The choir has ministered on the same stage as gospel artist: Darrell & LaTonja Blair, Amber Bullock, Lamar Campbell, Lecresia Campbell, Chicago Mass Choir, Daryl Coley, Beverly Crawford, Edwin Hawkins, Pastor Quincy Fielding, Jr., Bishop Walter Hawkins, Kellee Johnson, Brent Jones, The LA Chapter of the GMWA, Tamela Mann, Earnest Pugh and Shekinah Glory and they were recently the background choir for Dorinda Clark Cole.
Musical Accolades for YDM includes:
2006 - Youth Choir of the Year
2006 - Youth Choir Director of the Year
2006 - Runner-up: New /artist of the Year
2007 - Runner-up: Community Choir
2007 - Runner-up: Youth Choir
2008 - Youth Choir of the Year
2008 - Community Choir of the Year
2008 - Ms. Jackie received "The Gospel Trailblazer Award"
2009 - Runner-up: Youth Choir
2009 - Runner-up: Community Choir
2010 - Runner-Up: Community Choir
2013 - Ms. Jackie received The Legends Award
2016 - Texas State: Choir Of The Year
2022 - Texas Community Choir Of The Year
* * The above mentioned awards were presented by the Texas Gospel Music Excellence Awards.
2010 - Ms. Jackie received Houston's 50 Gospel Music Legends Award given by The Houston Chapter of the GMWA.
2010 - Ms. Jackie Smith received the Lee Ida Brown Campbell "Leadership Award", presented by Congresswoman Shelia Jackson & the Gospel Music Heritage Committee
YDM is abundantly blessed to have recorded their first CD, entitled "This Is MySpace", live in Dallas and released it at their Second Anniversary on their own record label, The YDM Music Factory. In their hometown of Houston, the project was introduced to the city on gospel radio station 1360 (KWWJ). It debuted on the stations' Top 5 at 5 at number 5. In one week it rose to the number 1 spot and held that spot for weeks, it is still in heavy rotation at the station. YDM appeared on the Youth Choir Stage of the Verizon Wireless “How Sweet The Sound” Church Choir Competition in Houston at the Toyota Center in 2008.
YDM is coming off a spiritual high, since completing their First International Tour in October, 2013. They stopped first in Atlanta, for a concert at Hillside International Truth Center, Bishop Dr. Barbara King, Pastor and then headed to London, England. The trip was awesome and one they will forever be grateful to God. Taking a year off, they were back on the road again with their 2015 "West Coast Tour". Visiting cities along the way to the San Francisco Bay Area, their first concert was in San Antonio, Tx. Then off to Las Vegas, where they opened up for Sunday Best Winner, Amber Bullock. Sunday morning service found them singng at the Historical City of Refuge Church, Bishop Noel Jones, Pastor. Later on that same day, they were afforded the opportunity to open up for the Los Angeles Chapter of the GMWA(the late James Cleveland, Founder). Meeting such gospel greats as Quincy Fielding Jr. and Mrs. Rodena Preston(sister of the late R & B great Billy Preston)
In addition to signing at many churches of different denominations, the opportunity has presented itself to sing for other events. They traveled to Austin, Texas to sing for two weddings. They sung at the 2016 MLK Gospel Fest, it was awesome and inspiring. They recently made their theatrical debut as the church choir in the Hit Stage Play, "Saved With Secrets". Saturday April 13, 2019, they participated in the Fifth Ward Renaissance Festival and song on the Gospel Stage.
November 23, 2019, they will be blessed to celebrate their Fifteenth(15th) Anniversary with a concert in Houston, before heading to Galveston to board a Carnival Cruise Ship for a seven day cruise to Key West Florida, Freeport and Nassau, Bahamas.
With no signs of slowing down in sight, they are making plans to travel to Sweden in the Fall of 2023.
March 7, 2020, they were given the opportunity to travel to Waco Texas and open up for a Gospel Music Workshop, directed by Donald Lawrence. Unfortunately, that was their last engagement for the year, due to the occurrence of the Corona Virus Global Pandemic. All engagements, concerts and rehearsals were put on a hold for one year and two months.
it goes without saying, the Covid-19 Pandemic changed the trajectory of Church services, Gospel Concerts and Musical everywhere. Once the number started going downward and CDC lowered the Emergency Level, they started rehearsing and were actually able to celebrate their 17th Anniversary, with Ms. Chrystal Rucker as their Special Guest Soloist.
God has taken this group of young people to a special place in gospel music, ministering near and far and singing at various venues for many different events. YDM continues to do community projects such as after school tutorials. They are impacting the gospel music industry as well as influencing their community as young leaders of tomorrow. With no signs of slowing down in sight, they are making plans to travel to Sweden in the Fall of 2023.
MORE THAN JUST A CHOIR
YDM IS MORE THAN JUST A CHOIR. WE ARE CONCERNED WITH THE WHOLE PERSON, NOT JUST THEIR VOCAL GIFTS AND TALENTS.
THERE ARE MANY MINISTRIES WITHIN THE SINGING AGGREGATION THAT WILL HELP EACH INDIVIDUAL REACH THEIR HIGHEST POTENTIAL.
Y D M OUTREACH MINISTRY
Alchohol and Drug Counseling
Arts & Crafts
Back To School Project
( Giving blankets & Coats to the needy )
Taking It To The StreetZ
( Servicing our Homeless Project )
TEA Certified Teachers
( English, Math, Science, Computer, Spanish )
YDM IS A 501 (C) (3) NON - PROFIT ORGANIZATION
ALL DONATIONS ARE TAX DEDUCTIBLE
P L E A S E