|Pegi Morton Young|
December 1, 1952 |
San Mateo, California, United States
|Genres||Folk rock, country music, jazz|
|Associated acts||Neil Young, The Survivors|
Pegi Morton Young (born December 1, 1952) is an American singer-songwriter, environmentalist, educator and philanthropist. Until recently, she lived in Northern California with her ex-husband, Neil Young, with whom she has one step-son, Zeke Young, and two biological children, Ben Young and Amber Young. Pegi's debut as a singer came in 1983 when she was a member of The Pinkettes, the backing singers of Neil Young's Rock-a Billy Shocking Pinks tour, later in 1994 she made her first nationwide TV appearance at the Academy Awards, singing backup on the song "Philadelphia," composed by her husband. In July 2014, Neil Young filed for divorce in California.
In 2000, Young joined her then husband on tour as a backup singer. In 2007, after recording songs in her home studio at the Broken Arrow Ranch, she released her self-titled debut album. Since then, she has created two additional albums, Foul Deeds (2010), and Bracing for Impact (2011), and has toured and performed with her band The Survivors, which includes Spooner Oldham on piano, Rick Rosas on bass, Kelvin Holly on guitar and drummer Phil Jones.
Young was inspired to create the school based on her experiences with her son Ben, who was born with cerebral palsy, a congenital condition which, for Ben, resulted in severe speech difficulties and motor impairment. Pegi and her ex-husband have said they searched for educational institutions tailored for children with physical and learning impairments like Ben’s, but were frustrated to find that none really existed.
Young founded the school with additional help from Jim Forderer, a fellow parent of a child with specialized educational needs, and Dr. Marilyn Buzolich. Pegi and Neil raised awareness for their newly founded school with their Bridge School Benefit Concert, which has continued annually to this day and has brought in musicians such as Arcade Fire, Mumford & Sons, Tony Bennett, Lucinda Williams, and Jack White. Since 1986, The Bridge School has continued to grow and evolve organically into an internationally recognized organization. Graduates from The Bridge School have often returned to their home school districts and continued their education once their rudimentary educational needs were met in the Bridge School’s more specialized setting.
Young has served in the capacity of Executive Director of the Bridge School for seven years, and has also served as President of the Board of Directors since its inception in 1986. She also has continued to organize and host the Bridge School Benefit concert every year since its 1986 debut.
Young serves on the board of A.R.T. (Artistic Realization Technologies), an organization dedicated to bringing avenues for creative expression through art into the lives of individuals with severe disabilities. She is also on the Advisory Board of the “virtual” AAC-RERC and on the Advisory Council for Lemelson Assistive Technology and Design Center on the campus of Hampshire College.
Young has served for four years on the board of the Alliance for Technology Access, a grassroots organization of 43 community based centers around the country serving individuals with disabilities, aimed at increasing their independence through the use of technology.
Young has performed at and hosted Farm Aid with her ex-husband Neil in 2007 and in 2012, and, in 2013, began serving on the board of directors of Rainforest Connection, an organization aimed at preventing deforestation by using real-time data collection to maximize the effectiveness of ground enforcement prevention of poaching.
- Induction into the San Mateo County Women’s Hall of Fame, 1995
- Honored with the FRED Conference's Pioneer Award for her work with the Bridge School and as an advocate for special needs issues, 2013
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- "Old smartphones called in to save Indonesian forests (2013-6-5)". Newscientist.com. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
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- "Fred Conference Pioneer Award 2013". Fredconference.org. Retrieved 28 November 2014.