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January 29, 2011 PRINCE GEORGE’S- January 29, 2011, TheEDITION COUNTY Afro-American A1
JANUARY 29, 2011 - FEBRUARY 4, 2011
Michelle Obama & Walmart Team for Health A2
Phil Ade: The Newest B3 Face of HipHop
Murders in Prince George’s Black Lawmakers, Leaders Highlight Divide Rate Obama Near 10 on State of the Union
By George Barnette AFRO Staff Writer The murders in Prince George’s County highlight another striking issue within the county - the divide between inner and outer beltway communities. All 15 murders so far this year were inside the beltway, proving that while wealth and pride reign in communities like Bowie, Upper Marlboro and Mitchellville, there are still communities where residents don’t enjoy that level of comfort. “Being realistic, you have more activities in areas that border Washington, D.C.,” said Earle Gumbs, Hillcrest/Marlow Heights Civic Association president. “We do border Washington, D.C. just like Seat Pleasant and some of those other places so you have more people committing crimes and some of those other things.” While Gumbs didn’t attribute the statistics to a disparity in resources between inner and outer beltway communities, he did say there was a different mindset when it comes to people taking ownership of their own neighborhoods. “I know for a fact that you always put police where you get the most calls for service,” he said. “Sometimes people in the inner beltway areas may see something going on, but they won’t call. Those in Bowie, Laurel or some of these other places, as soon as a drop of a hat happens, they call.” The divide is not just seen in the violence in the communities, it’s seen in the shopping options and schools as well. Woodmore Towne Center and Bowie Town Center both lie outside of the beltway and provide some of the county’s best grocer and retail shopping options. Then there are schools such as Dr. Henry Wise High School, Charles H. Flowers, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Oxon Hill, where much of the county’s elite send their kids— standardized test scores are markedly better there than at schools like Fairmont Heights, Central and Potomac - schools in shooting distance of the District border.
President Gets High Marks on Inspiration, but Poverty, Plight of Black Economics Still a Question
By Hazel Trice Edney Editor-in-Chief, Trice Edney News Wire WASHINGTON (TEWire) – It was an evening marked by thunderous applause, Republicans and Democrats symbolically sitting together instead of across the aisles, and a message from the president of the United States that soared with hope for economic recovery, health care, education and jobs. Still, President Obama fell slightly short of 10 points in the view of most Congressional
Black Caucus members and Black leaders interviewed by the Trice Edney News Wire after the Tuesday night speech when they were asked to grade the State of the Union on a scale of 1-10. “I give it a nine-and-a-half,” says CBC Chairman Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.). He says the president got an “A” for giving the inspiration that was needed as the economy appears to be generally turning around. But, Cleaver expressed concern about a void in Continued on A6
Photo by Rob Roberts
Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker is working to unite the county through improved transportation and economic development.
Continued on A4
Hear the AFRO on The Daily Drum, Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Justice Thomas Admits ‘Inadvertant’ Error, Common Prince George’s County Council Cause Responds: ‘Implausible’ Gears up for New Session
By AFRO Staff Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has acknowledged that he erred in not disclosing his wife’s income on his financial statements in the wake of complaints raised by liberal advocacy group Common Cause. In filings dated Jan. 21, Thomas sent seven similarly-worded letters to the Federal Committee on Financial Disclosure asking to amend his disclosure forms. In the letters, Thomas said he “inadvertently omitted” the information due to “a misunderstanding of the filing instructions.” However Common Cause, a watchdog group that monitors government and industry, is still crying foul as officials question his explanation. “Justice Thomas sits on the highest court of the land, is called upon daily to understand and interpret the most complicated legal issues of our day and makes decisions that affect millions. It is hard to see how he could have misunderstood the simple directions of a federal disclosure form,” said Common Cause President Bob Edgar in a statement. “We find his excuse is implausible.” Continued on A4 By AFRO Staff
President Obama, seen here giving the annual State of the Union Address in 2010, struck a tone of unity in Tuesday night’s speech.
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Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has admitted that he failed to disclose his wife Virginia’s income on his financial statements.
The Prince George’s County Council is gearing up for its next legislative session with some unique challenges ahead. The Council will have to work through a budget deficit, which threatens to cripple the county, while coping with a member with muted power. The Council concluded a three-day retreat on Jan. 12 in Continued on A4 Cambridge, Md., where they discussed several key issues and did teambuilding exercises. The Council members left the retreat feeling they’d gained something positive. “I am confident that the entire Council left the retreat better equipped to help foster more economic growth, create jobs, and provide efficient services to our residents, and more collaboration for the good of the County,” Council Chair Ingrid Turner, D.-Dist. 4, said in a prepared statement. The retreat was necessary as with five new council members, each from different backgrounds, a sense of camaraderie needed to be built. However, Courtesy Photo/Prince George’s County Council another reason could be the Council Chair Ingrid Turner is prepared Council has to work really to lead the new county council.
with eight members instead of nine as they stripped Councilwoman Leslie Johnson, D.-Dist. 6, of any committee powers. After Johnson’s arrest in November in a FBI sting that targeted her husband, former Prince George’s County Executive Jack Johnson, the Council didn’t think it was appropriate to have her serving on any committee while being
Copyright © 2011 by the Afro-American Company
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
AFRO National Briefs
Wal-Mart, First Lady Unveil Healthy Food Campaign Meeting at a Southeast Washington, D.C., community center THEARC last week, executives from Official White House Photo Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest grocer, and first lady Michelle Obama unveiled the powerhouse retailer’s new campaign, which aims to provide customers with healthier and more affordable food choices. According to Wal-Mart, the initiative will do the following: 1. Reformulate thousands of everyday packaged food items by 2015 by reducing sodium 25 percent and added sugars 10 percent, and by removing all remaining industrially produced trans-fats. 2. Make healthier choices more affordable, saving customers approximately $1 billion per year on fresh fruits and vegetables through a variety of sourcing, pricing, and transportation and logistics initiatives that will drive unnecessary costs out of the supply chain. 3. Develop strong criteria for a simple front-of-package seal that will help consumers instantly identify truly healthier food options such as whole grain cereal, whole wheat pasta or unsweetened canned fruit. 4. Provide solutions to address food deserts by building stores in underserved communities that are in need of fresh and affordable groceries; and 5. Increasing charitable support for nutrition programs that help educate consumers about healthier food solutions and choices. “No family should have to choose between food that is healthier for them and food they can afford,” said Bill Simon, president and CEO of Wal-Mart U.S., in a prepared statement. “With more than 140 million customer visits each week, Wal-Mart is uniquely positioned to make a difference by making food healthier and more affordable to everyone. We are committed to working with suppliers, government and non-governmental organizations to provide solutions that help Americans eat healthier and live a better life.” Former Chicago Officer Jailed for Torture of 100 Black Men For years, a growing number of young Black men in Chicago complained of a White policeman who used various forms of physical abuse – burning, suffocating, shocking – to force crime confessions. That officer, former Chicago Police Department Commander Jon Burge, 63, vehemently denied the allegations during a civil case involving allegations of torture at the hands of Chicago police officers. But on Jan. 21, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that Burge, who now lives in Florida, was guilty of abusing at least 100 Black men and he was sentenced to 54 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for lying in a deposition. According to the DOJ, Burge was convicted of two counts of obstruction of justice and one count of perjury last June. Those charges came from lies he told during a civil case in 2003, when Burge denied “using, or being aware of other officers using, any type of improper coercion, physical abuse or torture with suspects” in custody at Chicago’s Area Two police department. But evidence showed Burge suffocated multiple victims with plastic bags, threatened suspects with a gun and shocked them with electrical equipment. “Burge abused his power and betrayed the public trust by abusing suspects in his custody, and then by lying under oath to cover up what he and other officers had done,” said Thomas E. Perez, assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division, in a press release. “The department will aggressively prosecute any officer who violates the Constitution.” Pregnancy Rate Soars at Memphis High School The pregnancy rate among students at a Memphis high school has reached alarming proportions, Courtesy Photo as more than 90 girls at Frayser High School, in predominantly Black Shelby County, Tenn., have already given birth this year or are pregnant, according to reports. One of the girls, mother of a 2-month-old daughter, told WMC-TV in Memphis that more needs to be done by school officials to teach students about pregnancy prevention. Tericka Sutton, 16, said she discovered she was having a baby in her fifth month of pregnancy. “It’s a shame that all of these girls are pregnant, but it’s nothing new,” Sutton said. Referring to her own pregnancy she said that although “it just happened,” family and friends were aghast at the revelation. Asked if there might have been a pact among others to get pregnant, Sutton told the TV station that it was possible, but those she knew who got pregnant did so because they thought it was cute, or conceived by accident. Frayser High School enrolls 800 students, and the Tennessee Education Department claims pregnant girls make up 20 percent of the school’s female population. Alicia Williamson, who graduated from Frayser in 2004, told WMC-TV that adults are just beginning to catch on to the problem. “When we would come back from summer break, there would be a thousand people pregnant,” she was quoted as saying. “We were like, ‘What’s going on?’ There were a whole lot of bellies.” According to the online publication, Black Spin, teens that give birth are usually unprepared for the challenges of parenthood and often drop out of school. They also end up taking low-paying jobs and never complete their education. Children born to teen moms are also often sicker, poorer and less educated as a group. Meanwhile, school officials are scrambling to curb the pregnancy trend by working on a pregnancy prevention initiative expected to go into effect by the end of January Where’s the Beef?
Law firm sues Taco Bell for false advertising on meat products
A Montgomery, Ala., law firm is suing popular fast food eatery Taco Bell, claiming the company uses false advertising when Courtesy Photo referring to its “seasoned ground beef” and “seasoned beef” on commercials and product labels. The law firm Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles filed the suit in California federal court on Jan. 21. In a press release, the law firm said Taco Bell’s products do not meet the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) standards and claims the “majority of the filling is comprised of substances other than beef.” Instead, Taco Bell’s labels and other advertisements should say “taco meat filling,” according to the law firm. “Our government, through the USDA and FDA, provides definitions, standards and labeling guidelines for ‘ground beef.’ What Taco Bell is representing on their restaurant menu as ‘ground beef’ does not meet any of those definitions, standards and labeling guidelines,” said Beasley Allen attorney Dee Miles in a prepared statement. “This product does not qualify to be considered ‘ground beef’ and many of the ‘seasoning’ ingredients are in fact binders, fillers and coloring. These ingredients increase the overall volume of this product, reducing the actual ‘beef’ content per serving. It is against the law in this country to take someone’s money for a product that is misrepresented. This lawsuit seeks to put a stop to that type of conduct and practice.” According to The Associated Press, Taco Bell spokesman Rob Poetsch said the company denies any wrongdoing and plans to defend the lawsuit.
50 years ago they boarded a bus and risked their lives for freedom.
today we celebrate their courage.
University of Mary Washington Freedom Rides 50th Anniversary Celebration
May 7, 2011 February 7, 2011
Freedom Rides Celebration Kickoff, featuring “James Farmer and the Freedom Rides” exhibit unveiling James Farmer Visiting Professor Lecture: Eric Etheridge, author of Breach of Peace, Portraits of the 1961 Mississippi Freedom Riders
March 30, 2011
UMW Commencement Speaker: Former Freedom Rider and Georgia Congressman John Lewis
May 8, 2011
The Bus Stops Here: PBS 2011 Student Freedom Ride event
Freedom Riders film event in cooperation with PBS
March 30-31, 2011
All events will be held on the UMW campus, and are free and open to the public. For times and locations of events: freedomrides.umw.edu
James Farmer Visiting Professor Lectures: Andy Lewis, author of The Shadows of Youth: The Remarkable Journey of the Civil Rights Generation
March 31, 2011
Chappell Great Lives Lecture Series: Raymond Arsenault, author of Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice
James Farmer, architect of the Freedom Rides and a key leader of the civil rights movement, was a distinguished professor of history and American studies at UMW from 1985-98.
1/19/11 2:53 PM
November 1, 2008 - November 7, 2008, The Washington Afro-American
A3 Jennifer Hudson and Relatives Identify Body of Her Slain Nephew
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - January 29, 2011
sport-utility vehicle sought in connection with the murder of Hudson’s mother and brother. The white, 1994 Chevrolet Suburban with Illinois license
January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011 The Afro-American
State Officials: Direct Wine Sales Could Provide Economic Boost
Jennifer Hudson and other By George Barnette relatives positively identified AFRO Staff Writer
If Maryland state officials have their way, wineries in Maryland will begin to enjoy some of the same benefits as those in Virginia and other states. Officials want to enact legislation that would make direct wine shipments legal in Maryland. “If you live in [Washington,] D.C., you’re able to have a winery send you a case of wine,” said Del. Jolene Ivey, D.-Dist. 47. “Whether that winery is in California or in Maryland, you can have the wine shipped to you. If you live in Maryland, what you end up doing is having a friend in D.C. accept the shipment for you.” The State Comptroller’s Office released a study last month highlighting the benefits of changing the law. It looked at some of the best practices of direct wine shipping from across the country and came up with some key ideas on how it should be Courtesy Photos done in Maryland: Jennifer Hudson and her mom, Darnell Donerson who *Establish a “Direct Wine Shipper’s Permit” that would be was killed, as well as her brother, Jason. $100 to receive and $100 to renew; *Limit annual shipments to a dozen 9-liter cases per plate X584859 was found on the body of consumer; her 7-year-old Chicago’s West Side nephew Monday, just hours *Prohibit direct wine shipment on Sundays and after police received a 7 a.m. call after his bodycommon carriers to have an adult signature upon was found in a *Require direct delivery to a consumer. The Comptroller’s Office expects direct-to-consumer sales to be state wineries’ fastest growing sales channel and it also provided figures to back up its case. The report stated an average U.S. winery sold $1 million worth of wine directly to consumers with 66 percent of wineries producing fewer than and Dallas Cowboys players By Alan King 4,000 cases annually. Tony of this measure Owens, AFRO Staff Writer Meanwhile, several bills in support Romo and Terrell are among the names Ivey has moving through the Maryland General Assembly. submitted to election officials. Presidential candidate Johnlegalize direct wine shipments in sponsored a bill that would Hurd said is a workers, McCain’s attack on ACORNhaving this in placethosenuisance who – Maryland. She thinks not were doing those things without Associated Community ACORN’s knowledge or permisOrganization for Reform Now – sion, were fired. confirms the success of the “The evidence that has surorganization, the head of the faced so far shows they faked group says. “This is testimony to the work forms to get paid for work they Your History • Your Community •not to stuff ballot didn’t do, Your News we’ve done and success we’ve The Afro-American Newspapers said, is the boxes.” ACORN, she had,” Maude Hurd, president of Baltimore Office • victim of fraud, not the perpetraACORN, said in an interview Corporate Headquarters 2519 N. Charles Street tor of it. with the AFRO. Baltimore, Maryland 21218-4602 things Hurd said the only “When this attack started, we bogus are the charges 410-554-8200 • had just announced that we had Fax: 1-877-570-9297 themselves. registered 1.3 million new votwww.afro.comAnd factcheck. org ers,” she said. by John Henry Murphy Sr., August 13, 1892 “That’s just to say agrees. Founded thatWashington Publisher EmeritaIt concluded, “Neither II someone’s running scared - Frances L. Murphy ACORN nor its employees have because of ACORN’s success.” been found guilty of, or even McCain, who is running for Chairman of the Board/Publisher - John J. Oliver, Jr. president on the Republican tick- charged with, casting fraudulent Executive Assistant - Takiea Hinton - 410-554-8222 votes.” et, lashed out at ACORN in the The problem came about prifinal debate against Barack Receptionist - Wanda Pearson - 410-554-8200 Obama, contending the group “is marily because of the way on the verge of maybe perpetrat- ACORN operates. Rather than Director rely on volunteers, it pays peoing one of theof Advertising/Sponsorship Development & Sales greatest frauds in Susan Gould - 410-554-8289 ple, many of them poor or unemvoter history in this country, firstname.lastname@example.org ployed, to maybe destroying the fabric of- Robert Blount -sign up new voters. Advertising Manager 410-554-8246 The idea was to help both those democracy.” Sr. Advertising Account Executive - Annie Russ - 410-554-8235 Factcheck.org, a non-partisan being registered and those doing Advertising Account Executive Web site, found those claims to Marquise Goodwin the registration. - 410-554-8274 Maud explained, “We have a be “exaggerated,” with “no evidence of any such democracy- - Jack zero tolerance policy for deliberDirector of Finance Leister - 410-554-8242 ate falsification of registration.” destroying fraud.” Most news account neglect to Hurd believes the McCain Gartrell - 410-554-8265 Archivist - John charges were politically motivat- point out that ACORN is required Relations ed. Director, Community & Publicby law to turn in all registration forms. And they also fail She said, “Because it’s lowDiane W. Hocker - 410-554-8243 to note that it was the organizaand moderate-income people, and people of color, I believe the tion, in many instances, that first Editorial brought the phony registrations McCain campaignEditor - Talibah Chikwendu - 410-554-8251 Executive thinks those to the attention of authorities. voters are going to vote E-mail: email@example.com Democratic, which is notChief - TiffanyThe McCain camp apparently necesBaltimore Bureau Ginyard - 410-554-8269 isn’t interested in those sarily true.” Managing Editor - Kristin Gray - 410-554-8277 fine points, - 202-332-0080, ext. 119 Washington Bureau Chief - Zenitha Princepreferring to air misleadACORN is no stranger to ing ads that seek to link Obama controversy. For 38 years, the non-partisan Markets Global to ACORN, thereby undercutting organization has fought for social Phillips IV - 410-554-8220 Director - Benjamin M. his political support. McCain: I’m John McCain and economic justice for firstname.lastname@example.org lowand I approve this message. and moderate-income Circulation/Distribution Manager Washington Announcer: Who Americans. With 400,000 mem-202-332-0080, ext. 116 is Barack Edgar Brookins ber familiesBaltimore Circulation/Distributionman with “a political organized into more Obama? A Manager than 1,200 neighborhood chapSammy Graham - baptism performed at warp 410-554-8266 speed.” Vast ambition. After colters in 110 cities nationwide, Production Department - he moved to Chicago. ACORN has over the years seen lege,410-554-8288 its share of criticism while advo- Became a community organizer. There, Obama Washington Office met Madeleine cating for affordable housing, Talbot, part of the Chicago living wages, healthcare for the • Washington, D.C. 20002-4723 1917 Benning Road, N.E. underserved—202-332-0080 Fax: branch of ACORN. He was so and while organ1-877-570-9297 impressive izing voter registration drives. General Manager that he was asked to train the ACORN staff. But none has been as withering Edgar Brookins - ext. 116 What did ACORN 112 and baseless as this one. Office Administrator - Mia Hayes-Hawkins - ext. in Chicago engage in? Bullying banks. With the presidential election Intimidation tactics. Disruption lessCustomer Service, Home Delivery and Subscriptions: than two weeks away, of business. ACORN forced ACORN’s detractors allege410-554-8234 the organization has engaged in mas- banks to issue risky home loans. Customer Service@afro.com sive voter registration fraud after The same types of loans that Billing Inquiries: 410-554-8226 caused the financial the reported discoveryand Weekends: 410-554-8282 crisis we’re Nights of bogus in today. names, such as Mickey Mouse
By Alan King AFRO Staff Writer
ACORN Fights Back
Leader Calls Voter Registration Fraud Charges ‘Bogus’
from a neighbor about a suspiposted fliers bearing his photocious vehicle. The man noticed graph around the city. On the vehicle while walking his Sunday, Jennifer Hudson asked dog. According to the Chicago for the public’s help in finding to consumers and puts Tribune, the boy had been shot her nephew. In her MySpace The Maryland Maryland’s wineries at a multiple times in the back seat blog, she thanked fans and supdisadvantage. of the vehicle. The SUV, regisporters forGeneral their prayers and Assembly will “If Hudson’s the Eastern tered toyou live onmurdered offered a $100,000 reward to be looking at brother, was towed with the anyone who returned the boy Shore you’re not going to making direct boy’s body inside Maryland alive. drive to Western and is being wine sales processed by evidence techniSince the investigation, to get a bottle of wine,” Ivey cians and workers. The body Hudson – possible instardom who gained the said. “So the local wineries was suffering and this is later removed and taken to after appearing on “American state. are the Cook County Medical Idol,” and then won an something that we can do Examiner’s about.” office. Academy Award for her role in something Hudsonare concerns and other family the movie Dreamgirls – has There members arrived at the Medical stayed out of the public eye. about legalizing direct wine Examiner’s office mid-afterThe Chicago Tribune reportshipments such as body. Julian King, Jennnifer Hudson’s nephew. noon to identify thewhether ed that a parade of cars moved it would choice easier for Given thebecome between lookslowly past her family’s home A spokesman for the office the murders but is being held in Monday morning, past the underage drinkers to purchase ing directly at the body or told the newspaper that Hudson jail for parole violation after wine over the wall-mounted viewing it on aInternet. The news vans, reporters and curireport cites a study done ous onlookers. Courtesy Photo by the National Center on Neighbors stood Addiction and Substance quietly and Abuse at Columbia University reflected on the direct wine shipment became legal, it is clear that any underage being convicted of attempted video screen,the economic impact “remained strong for her famiviolence. (CASA) on the family chose of underage drinking on the access to wine is undesirable,” the report states. ly” and was just how much murder and vehicular hijackthe latter. According thethe In front of the Hudson’s alcohol industry. In to study, breakdowns ofclearly its leader. “She held hands her fami- ing.However, it countered, safeguards would in heavy jackets to Cook County records show home, men be put in place Tribune,underagesaid, “Yes, Hudson drinkers infuse into the industry with at what money and combat that issue. to both ly,” the spokesman said. “It that he pleaded guilty that’s him.” and hooded state is too great exact percentage of underage drinkers contribute are given. The And, other supporters said, the benefit to the sweatshirts came to was obviously a very emotional charges in 1999. He was also kiss the twin the crosses barstudy states that the number of underage wine consumers is to pass up. 1998 for possesrevenue for white moment.” convicted in“It will bring in more ing the names ofstate, it’s and Donerson only 7.7 percent and it is a concern if this legislation is enacted. sion of a stolen motor vehicle. something that’s business friendly for consumers and will help The boy – the son of Julia Jason. “Even though wine may be the least likely type of alcohol the wineries,” Ivey said. “There’s no reason right now for Hudson, Jennifer’s sister – had He was released from prison in “Everybody is sick of going imbibed by minors, and may not present additional risks if Maryland not to seven years wine industry like Virginia.” been missing since Friday, 2006 after servinghave a vigorous through stuff like this,” Artisha when a relative found Julian’s for the attempted murder and West, a former resident of the grandmother, Darnell car hijacking charges. area told the Tribune. “We all No wonder Obama’s campaign is Donerson, 57, and his uncle, The boy remained missing have to stick together. All these trying to distance him from the Jason Hudson, 29, shot to death through a long weekend in young children are dying, and group, saying, “Barack Obama in his grandmother’s home in which police and volunteers for what?” Never Organized with ACORN.” the 7000 block of South Yale But Obama’s ties to ACORN run Avenue. long and deep. He taught classes An Amber Alert – a desigfor ACORN. They even endorsed nation for high-risk missing him for President. children – was issued Friday But now ACORN is in trouble. after Julian was discovered Reporter: There are at least missing after the murders. 11 investigations across the Police arrested William country involving thousands of Balfour, the missing boy’s steppotentially fraudulent ACORN father and estranged husband forms. of Julia, at his girlfriend’s Announcer: Massive voter Southside apartment several fraud. And the Obama campaign hours after the murders. paid more than $800,000 to an Balfour’s mother, Michele, has ACORN front for get out the vote told reporters that her son had efforts. nothing to do with the slayings. Pressuring banks to issue risky Balfour remains a suspect in Jason Hudson loans. Nationwide voter fraud. Barack Obama. Bad judgment. Blind ambition. Too risky for America.
“She held hands with her family. It was obviously a very emotional moment.”
“My banker helped me plan for 23 new employees. And one new freshman.”
Baltimore Afro-American — (USPS 040-800) is published weekly by The Afro-American Newspapers, 2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4602. Subscription Rate: Baltimore - 1 Year - $30.00 (Price includes tax.) Checks for subscriptions should be made payable to: The Afro-American Newspaper Company, 2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4602. Periodicals postage paid at Baltimore, MD. POSTMASTER: Send addresses changes to: The Afro-American Newspaper Company, 2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4602. The Washington Afro-American & Washington Tribune — (0276-6523) is published weekly by the Afro-American Newspapers at 1917 Benning Road, N.E., Washington, D.C. 20002-4723. Subscription Rate: Washington - 1 Year - $30.00. Periodical Postage paid at Washington, D.C. POSTMASTER: Send addresses changes to: The Washington Afro-American & Washington Tribune, 2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4602.
Since McCain’s comments, SQUARE HIGH ACORN’s 87 offices have been bombarded with threats and racist mail. The day after the presidential debate, vandals broke into the organization’s Boston and Seattle offices and stole computers. NOT ON THE LIST BREAD After a Cleveland representative appeared on TV, an e-mail was sent to the local office saying she “is going to have her life ended.” A worker in Providence, R.I., received a threatening call sayLEFT RIGHT ing, “We know you get off work at 9” and uttered racial epithets. A caller to one office left a message on the answering machine, saying: “Hi, I was just calling to let you know that Barack Obama needs to get hung. He’s a (expletive deleted) nigger, Βυσινεσσ Χλασσ Βανκινγ. and he’s a piece of (expletive deleted). You guys are Ψου δον∏τ δραω α fraudulent, and you need to go to λινε βετωεεν ψουρ βυσινεσσ ανδ περσοναλ λιφε. Νειτηερ δο ωε. hell. All the niggers on oak trees. They’reΨουρ βυσινεσσ δεσερϖεσ υνδιϖιδεδ αττεντιον. Ανδ τηατ∏σ εξαχτλψ ωηατ ψου χαν εξπεχτ. Ωε∏λλ γετ το gonna get all hung hon1 BANANA eys, they’re going to get assassi- ψουρ βυσινεσσ. Σο ωε µιγητ συγγεστ Ονλινε Παψρολλ ασ ψουρ βυσινεσσ εξπανδσ, κνοω ψου, ασ ωελλ ασ nated, they’re gonna get killed.” βυτ ωε∏λλ αλσο Another message said,ταλκ αβουτ τηε οτηερ τηινγσ τηατ χαν κεεπ ψου υπ ατ νιγητ. Λικε τυιτιον. Τηατ λεϖελ οφ “You σερϖιχε ισ (expletive liberal idiots. Dumbµορε τηαν ϕυστ ουρ προµισε, ιτ∏σ ψουρ ριγητ ∇ ωιτη Βυσινεσσ Χλασσ Βανκινγ. Το σεε αλλ τηε deleted). Welfare bums. σερϖε ψου ανδ ψουρ βυσινεσσ, ϖισιτ συντρυστ.χοµ/βυσινεσσχλασσ ορ χαλλ 866.442.1370. ωαψσ ωε χαν You guys just (expletive deleted) come to our country, consume every natural resource there is, and make a lot of babies. That’s all you guys do. And then suck up the welfare and expect everyone else to pay for your hospital bills for your kids. I jus’ say let Before age ﬁve, every room is a classroom. your kids die. That’s the best move. Just let your children die. Fun learning opportunities are everywhere. Simple things like Forget about paying for hospital counting and identifying shapes activate a child’s learning ability, bills for them. I’m not gonna do and help them enter school more prepared. That’s why PNC it. You guys are lowlifes. And I founded Grow Up Great and its Spanish-language equivalent Crezca hope you all die.” con Éxito, a 10-year, $100 million program to help prepare young Hurd thinks the hate calls will children for school and life. Pick up a free bilingual Sesame Street™ cease soon. “Happy, Healthy, Ready for School” kit at a PNC branch. It’s ﬁlled “In two weeks, I think these with all kinds of simple, everyday things you can do to help a child attacks will be over. But I think it learn. Together, we can work with our communities so an entire will be harder for us to get our generation won’t just grow up... but grow up great. name back on good graces because they really trashed us in the last few weeks.” To ﬁnd out more, go to pncgrowupgreat.com But ACORN will not be or call 1-877-PNC-GROW. deterred. Σερϖιχε Υνδερστανδινγ Πασσιον Παρτνερσηιπ Σολυτιονσ “We’ve been fighting for a long time, for over 30 years, for the rights of low- and moderate- ♥ 2011 ΣυνΤρυστ Βανκσ, Ινχ. ΣυνΤρυστ ανδ Λιϖε Σολιδ. Βανκ Σολιδ. αρε φεδεραλλψ ρεγιστερεδ σερϖιχε µαρκσ οφ ΣυνΤρυστ Βανκσ, Ινχ. ΣυνΤρυστ Βανκ, Μεµβερ Φ∆ΙΧ. income people all across the country,” Hurd said. “We’re going to continue to fight for economic justice in our communities.” TM /©2008 Sesame Workshop. All rights reserved. ©2008 The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
January 29, 2011 - January 29, 2011, The Afro-American
Divide Highlighted Thomas Admits ‘Inadvertant’ Error
Continued from A1 Continued from A1 The divide is even seen in politics, as many of the most powerful people in the county have lived in outer-beltway communities. Former Prince George’s County Executive Jack Johnson and wife Leslie live in Mitchellville, one of the more affluent neighborhoods in the county. The Johnsons, like other high-ranking officials, live in these neighborhoods, which tend to have better shopping, dining and education options. However, things are changing, as current County Executive Rushern Baker lives in Cheverly, an inner-beltway community, while his kids attend Suitland High School. Baker spoke of that divide between officials in those communities in relation to officials in outer-beltway communities and the need to erase that gap. “I think people are frustrated with the non-inclusion of the elected officials and the inability to work together to get things done,” Baker told the AFRO. The county seems to be putting its money where its mouth is. It’s already made a commitment to upgrade areas around metro stations such as New Carrollton, Naylor Road, and Branch Avenue. The county may finally be looking to give inside the beltway communities the same options as outer communities. Common Cause pointed out to the Judicial Conference of the United States, the regulator for the judicial branch of government, that Virginia Thomas’ earnings while at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative advocacy organization, were not reported from 2003 to 2007. During that period, Common Cause indicates that Thomas earned $686,589, a salary of $120,000 or greater each year. Common Cause indicates that she left Heritage in 2008; but in 2009 Liberty Central, an organization with strong ties to the Tea Party Movement, which she co-founded, paid Thomas for services, according to its chief operating officer Sarah Field. Neglecting to disclose this information would violate the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, which requires all federal officials, including Supreme Court justices, to disclose their spouse’s income. Thomas indicated “none” under the latter category on his disclosure forms from 2003 to 2009. Common Cause on Jan. 20 also requested the Justice Department investigate the “apparent involvement” of both Thomas and Justice Antonin Scalia in what it calls “strategy sessions” hosted by Koch Industries in January 2010. Koch Industries, one of the nation’s largest privately-held companies owned by the Koch brothers, conservative magnates, is the umbrella for such companies as Georgia-Pacific. Koch sent out a description for its next program in Palm Springs, Calif., entitled “Understanding and Addressing Threats to American Free Enterprise and Prosperity” which states: “This action-oriented program brings together top experts and leaders to discuss –and offer solutions to counter – the most critical threats to our free society. …Past meetings have featured such notable leaders as Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas; Governors Bobby Jindal and Haley Barbour; commentators John Stossel, Charles Krauthammer, Glenn Beck, and Rush Limbaugh; Senators Jim DeMint and Tom Coburn; and Representatives Paul Ryan, Mike Pence, and Tom Price.” Common Cause claimed that sitting justices meeting with the second largest private corporation in the U.S. raises questions about whether the two jurists should back away from upcoming cases involving campaign financing by corporations. Common Cause is asking the Judicial Conference to probe these matters and, if warranted, refer the issue to the Justice Department for enforcement under the Ethics in Government Act. If found guilty, Thomas would become only the second justice in modern times to encounter ethics problems. Liberal Associate Justice Abe Fortas resigned in 1969 under pressure over financial and ethics issues.
Council Gears up for New Session
Continued from A1
under investigation. a District 6 community leaders’ forum government, council members have “While Mrs. Johnson is under federal recently that drew over 100 people decided to try to make their process - in charges the Council is proceeding with and was attended by county board of new legislation and meetings - more an abundance of caution by taking education members as well as police and open and honest than ever before. the following measures to ensure fire officials. The council plans to take more of the effectiveness of this body and to “This meeting, the first of many for its meetings on the road so that the avoid any appearance of impropriety,” District 6, offered a great opportunity community can be more involved in its Turner said. “Mrs. Johnson will have to come together around the issues government. no committee assignments; the full that impact our quality of life in the “Moving some of the Council Council will take a more active role County—the economy and jobs, access committee meetings outside Upper in development projects in District 6 to quality healthcare, and educationMarlboro and into our communities and throughout all of Prince George’s to name a few,” Johnson said in a supports opportunities for greater public County; and she will not officially statement. “I appreciate the active participation in the legislative process,” represent the County Council to any participation of District 6 community said Councilman Eric Olson, D.-Dist.3, external bodies.” leaders who are so willing to collaborate in a statement. “The need for making That isn’t stopping Johnson from to determine District 6 priorities and government more open and accessible to doing the things she thinks are important share valuable information about our citizens becomes even more apparent though. Johnson, who had stayed clear resources and solutions.” as we look to build strong, green of the public eye since her arrest, hosted CT Region 1/27/11 Afro-American_DC MDBAA early due: 1/21/11 11.5” x 10.5” development projects.”Darlene Given the cloud over Prince George’s community B&W 85LPI C: John D: Terri P: 030890A / MD
“ I still can’t believe I won!”
I definitely thought this only happened in movies.
—Nordstrom Scholarship Recipient
Emmanuel Abebrese, Freedom High School
Cassandra Tulloh, Colonial Forge High School
Madhavi Phuyel, Wheaton High School
Chelsea Kraatz, Watkins Mill High School
Taylor Collins, South River High School
Nordstrom scholarship program aWard WiNNErs
At Nordstrom, we believe helping young people in the pursuit of their academic goals is an exciting investment in our future. With this in mind, we are proud to present this year’s winners of the Nordstrom Scholarship program. These five remarkable students from area school districts have been chosen to receive scholarships based on academic achievements, community service, school involvement and financial need. Each will receive a $10,000 scholarship to a four-year accredited college of their choice. More information for the 2011 school year is available at nordstrom.com/scholarship.
030890A.CAP 2010 Scholarship Winners.indd 1
12/22/10 12:39 PM
Is There Really a Deficit Crisis?
(TEWire) - In the wake of the State of the Union Address there is likely to be much partisan conversation about the direction of our nation. President Obama will address the economy and jobs, and Republicans will talk about the health of the economy, and about cutting budgets in their rebuttal. Citing growing deficits, both parties are concerned that spending is out of control. Julianne Malveaux Yet some spending is absolutely needed to create jobs, just as $700 billion of spending was needed to bail out banks. It intrigues me that the same folk who eagerly bailed banks out have now suddenly discovered the concept of budget cuts and are pushing them, even as they have added to the deficit by insisting on extending Bush tax cuts. President Obama has furthered the notion that there is a budget crisis by appointing Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson to make suggestions to manage the federal budget deficit. The Bowles/Simpson commission would trim about $4 trillion from the federal budget in the next decade by increasing the Social Security retirement age, freezing federal pay, leveling Pentagon spending, and making other cost-cutting suggestions. There were 18 people on the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, and 14 had to approve the suggestions for them to be accepted. Only 11, however, went along with some of the draconian plans that were announced, so the suggestions are only suggestions. It is important to raise questions about the nature of the deficit crisis. Is this a cyclical crisis, connected to the economic downturn? Is it more structural, something that would have
January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
National Urban League’s 12-Point Blueprint for Job Creation
“Freedom has always been an expensive thing. History is a fit testimony to the fact that freedom is rarely gained without sacrifice and self-denial.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. more than 100 local affiliates across the country are economic first-responders in the ongoing effort to help ease the burden of those most profoundly affected by this recession, serving some 2.1 million citizens in 2010 alone. Over the past two years, much of the work of the Obama administration and the 111th Congress has been nothing short of heroic. From the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to the passage of the Dodd-Frank Consumer Protection Act, the Affordable Healthcare Act, and the extension of middle class tax relief and unemployment benefits, the administration has taken historic actions to restore America’s economic vitality. But the persistent nature of the recession has brought little relief to families either out of work or stretching parttime wages to meet full-time financial commitments. Record numbers of Americans were forced into foreclosure in 2010, and many urban families in communities already long beset by economic stagnation are enduring unemployment rates as high as 20 percent. That is why the National Urban League is proposing a new 12-point Blueprint for Quality Job Creation. Our plan offers a dozen dynamic and imaginative measures to both rescue those most profoundly affected by the ongoing economic emergency, while also remedying many of the underlying causes behind the recession’s inordinate and seemingly-amplified impact on the communities we serve: 1. Restore the Summer Youth Jobs Program as a stand-
occurred with our without the downturn? How should it be managed, and will there be equal pain around curtailing the deficit, or will only one or two sectors pay for the challenges the deficit creates? For example, there has been talk of raising the social security retirement age for years, and always we have looked at an across the board age increase, whether workers are high income or low, whether they have pensions or not, whether their work is physical or not. It’s entirely different to ask a professor to work until 70 than it is to ask a waitress to do so, but these plans increase the social security retirement age do not seem to take these things into consideration, thus continuing a class based economic inequality that also creates racial inequality. Is this our goal? To widen gaps instead of narrowing them? Increasing the social security retirement age indiscriminately will do this. Similarly, the attack on federal employees is an attack that has a differential impact by race and gender. Women and people of color are both more likely to be employed by the federal government, but also more likely to get more equal pay in the public sector than in the private sector. United for a Fair Economy released their annual State of the Dream report last week. Entitled, “Austerity for Whom,” the report explores the ways that so-called budget cutting measures actually hit women and people of color more severely. White women earn 82 cents for every $1 White men earn in the public sector, compared to 71 cents in the private sector. Black men earn 80 cents to the White male dollar in the public sector, but a scant 57 cents for every dollar in the private sector. Black women earn 73 cents to the White male dollar in the public sector, but 56 cents in the private sector. Latino men earn 86 cents to the White male dollar in the public sector but just 48 cents to the dollar, while Latina women earn 71 cents to the dollar in the public sector, but just 46 to the White male dollar in the private sector. The solution may not be to maintain a large public
workforce, but any solution will include an awareness of these differences and, perhaps, a strong Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to enforce antidiscrimination laws. Who wants to bet that the EEOC will be another of the budget cutting casualties? In an anti-regulatory climate, the combination of federal employment cuts, and an indifference to enforcement of anti-discrimination laws is designed to increase the racial unemployment gap. It makes sense that the deficit should rise during an employment crisis. While we should be careful with our resources, we should certainly not budget and employment significantly in a recession. The so-called deficit crisis could be a more complex crisis if we don’t put people back to work, no matter what it costs. Dr. Julianne Malveaux is president of Bennett College for Women in Greensboro, N.C . Her latest book, “Surviving and Thriving: 365 Facts in Black Economic History” can be ordered at www.lastwordprod.com.
Last Monday, the nation celebrated what would have been the 82nd birthday of the 20th century’s great drum major for justice Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King understood that economic Marc H. Morial justice was the most crucial question confronting Black people, as well as poor and middle class people generally throughout America. In fact, at his death, he was on the brink of launching a nationwide campaign for jobs and income. As, America enters the second decade of a new millennium, and the National Urban League begins its second century, our organization is introducing a new blueprint for achieving that goal. The nation remains mired in a great recession. The National Urban League has seen the impact of this crisis first hand. Our
alone program employing 5 million teens in summer 2011. 2. Create 100 urban jobs academies to implement an expansion of the Urban Youth Empowerment Program. 3. Develop a dynamic national public-private jobs initiative to create jobs and train urban residents and stimulate economic growth in the areas of technology and broadband, health care, manufacturing, transportation and public infrastructure and clean energy. 4. Boost minority participation in information and communication technology (ICT) industries. 5. Reform, revise and reauthorize Workforce Investment Act to prepare and retrain workers for 21st century jobs. 6. Create green empowerment zones. 7. Expand small business lending. 8. Initiate tax reform that reduces rates across the board and eliminates tax loopholes. 9. Establish and promote multilateral international trade policies that expand the market for American goods and services. 10. Enact the Urban Jobs Act (H.R. 5708). 11. Expand the hiring of housing counselors nationwide. 12. Fund direct job creation in cities and states. We urge the Congress and the White House to adopt these measures without delay. Marc H. Morial is president and CEO of the National Urban League.
In the early morning hours of Oct. 15, 2010, Ali Mohammed was chased from a U Street bar by an owner and four employees, allegedly because he threw a brick through a window – a window that had been punched in 90 minutes before by someone else. They caught Ali in the middle of a busy intersection, threw him to the ground, and kicked him for several minutes until he lost consciousness or until the Roger Gordon police arrived – it’s not clear which. It took the ambulance only five minutes to reach Howard University Hospital’s Emergency Room, but Ali was pronounced dead a mere nine minutes after arriving there. It was five days past his 27th birthday. By all accounts, Ali Ahmed Mohammed was a gentle and generous man. He was tall, good looking, and had a boyish playfulness about him. Ali immigrated to the United States from Ethiopia as a young child and took his first job, as a nursing home assistant, when he was 15 years old. A former coworker remembers him talking endlessly with the residents and always finding ways to make them smile. It was not surprising then that nearly 600 of his friends and neighbors held a candlelight vigil on the street where he was killed to remember him and to demand justice. The official investigation into Ali’s death yielded few answers, however, the manner in which it was conducted speaks volumes about law enforcement in the District of Columbia. As a starting point for my analysis, I reviewed police reports, 911 logs, Fire & EMS event chronologies, hearing transcripts, and Alcoholic Beverage Control Board orders. Several questions emerged: 1. What happened inside the bar that night?—The almost identical natures of the two crimes allegedly committed that
The Curious Death of Ali Mohammed
night suggest a connection between the two. Both appear to be acts of retaliation by persons who felt powerless – instances of lashing out similar to keying a car or slashing a person’s tires. 2. Why did the assailants beat Mohammed so brutally?—Ali Mohammed was no stranger to Ninth Street. Tall and gregarious, he was known in all the Ethiopian restaurants and cafes, so it seems unlikely that none of his assailants recognized him as a local. None of the assailants have public records of violence and by all accounts were nice guys. So how could they commit such a brutal act on another human being? An employee who was in the bar but not involved in the assault told a Channel 8 reporter that “the only people that hang out [on Ninth Street] are – you know, no offense – crackheads, you know, drug addicts, homeless people. A lot of the time we have to shoo them away. They panhandle and such, you know.” A videotape of the interview was introduced as exculpatory evidence by the bar’s owners at the liquor board hearing held after the incident. Ninth Street is home to a dozen Ethiopian restaurants and cafés and the center of the area’s Ethiopian community. If the assailants could not distinguish them from “crackheads,” it might explain (but certainly not excuse) the inhumane nature of the beating they administered. Did the assailants know their victim? 3. Does the medical examiner’s “cause of death” statement tell the whole story or is it necessary to review the full autopsy report?—The Medical Examiner’s cause of death statement suggests that Mohammed died from an underlying heart ailment, but it makes no mention of the “significant bruising on the forearms,” that the police observed. Anyone who watches TV knows those were defensive wounds – the kind that would be received by a person on the ground in a fetal position who was trying to protect his head and face from being kicked. The autopsy should be independently reviewed. 4. Why did the ABC Board deviate so far from its own rules?—The ABC Board seemed to bend over backwards to reopen the bar. Despite being statutorily prohibited from engaging in criminal investigations, it conducted one anyway and then relied upon the results to absolve the bar owner of any serious offense so it could give him back its license. The 28 year-old investigator assigned to the case had been
with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration for only two-and-a-half years and, other than holding a master’s degree in forensic psychology, there is no evidence she has any training or experience related to criminal investigations not related to violations of ABC regulations. Perhaps that is why the first person she called after hearing of the incident was to another co-owner of the bar rather than to police officials. Most tellingly, perhaps is the fact that although MPD notified her of the earlier window-punching incident just one hour after it occurred, she did not find out about the killing until the following morning. 5. Why aren’t the witness statements sufficient to establish probable cause to charge the assailants with homicide or at least aggravated assault?—It is black letter law that an assailant “takes his victim as he finds him.” If a criminal assault leads to the victim’s death, he can be found guilty of felony murder. Here, however, the assailants have avoided prosecution, and the bar has been allowed to reopen, simply by them telling the liquor board: “We’re not going to do it again,” installing a few video cameras and putting the staff through sensitivity training. The questions surrounding Ali Mohammed’s death could be answered if the Justice Department (not the U.S. Attorney’s Office) were to conduct a bona fide investigation. But they cannot answer the most important one: After years of failing to hold public officials – Black and White – accountable for turning a blind eye when Black men are killed (Sean Bell, DeOnté Rawlings, Ronny White, Oscar Grant, Trey Joyner, and now Ali Mohammed) have we, as Black people, come to accept that the unlawful killing of a Black man by “respectable” people is no longer a punishable offense? Roger Gordon is a third-year law student at Georgetown and a former member of Human Rights Watch’s California Committee North. He has clerked for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary. He was a member of Chairman Conyers’s Braintrust Panel on Racial Profiling at the 2008 CBC Weekend Conference.
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February29, 2011 The Afro-American, January 4, 2011
O’Malley Budget Includes $949 Million in Spending Cuts
By David Saleh Rauf Capital News Service ANNAPOLIS — Gov. Martin O’Malley is proposing nearly $1 billion in spending cuts, shuffling hundreds of millions of dollars from state funds and slashing aid to local governments to close the state’s nearly $1.4 billion budget shortfall in his fiscal 2012 budget unveiled Friday. O’Malley, who has called this his most challenging budget to balance, stayed true to his pledge to present a spending plan that does not include tax hikes, though lawmakers could take steps to change that in the coming months. Under the proposed budget, state workers will avoid furloughs for the first time in three years and funding for K-12 education will remain flat at $5.7 billion – two bright spots in an otherwise grim spending plan that makes cuts to almost all state programs. “This will be the first word on the budget, not the last,” said O’Malley, a theme he’s reiterated over the last couple of weeks. “None of this is $60 million from the state’s Transportation Trust Fund, a move that could prove to be unpopular with lawmakers. “Transportation projects are already severely underfunded,” said Del. Heather Mizeur, D-Montgomery County. During a budget briefing, O’Malley lamented the need to cut into the state’s fund that helps pay for roads, bridges and construction of transit systems, saying he would have “rather not cut any” money from the fund. Tough decisions, he said, had to be made. “We’re trying to get through this recession and keep intact as much as we can,” he said. Legislative analysts estimated the state’s shortfall at $1.6 billion, but O’Malley presented a deficit closer to $1.35 billion. O’Malley’s budget will now go to the General Assembly, where lawmakers can make cuts but not add to it. “On the first day of the budget it’s a fool’s errand to make prognostications about what will and won’t stand,” said Mizeur. “There are nuggets of ideas in here that will help us close the gap in interesting ways and there are other proposals we will probably part ways with from a legislative perspective.” Among the discussions lawmakers are expected to have this session regarding the budget is one about raising taxes. A proposed “dime-a-drink” increase on the state’s alcohol tax is being considered again this session. Lawmakers are also talking about raising the state’s gas tax, and O’Malley appeared receptive during a radio interview Friday to the idea of reinstating the state’s millionaire tax that expired Dec. 31. “We have to keep an open mind to all things,” he said. Sen. David Brinkley, R-Frederick, said O’Malley’s budget could leave some lawmakers wanting to make changes. “He may make some severe reductions to programs some legislators feel near and dear about with the expectation that if you want to restore this funding, raise some taxes,” Brinkley said. “He’s leaving any of that up to the legislature.” O’Malley’s budget proposes a series of consolidations estimated to
Photo by Webster Phillips III
Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposed budget cuts nearly $1 billion in spending and shuffles funding to address the states huge budget shortfall. going to be easy.” O’Malley’s budget includes cuts of $264 million in Medicaid payments to hospitals, $104 million from the state employee retirement system and $52 million in aid for local governments. Another $40 million in annual savings will come through buyouts of about 1,000 state workers, O’Malley said. The budget also proposes transferring $285 million from state accounts. That includes diverting
Continued from A1
save the state $4 million, including merging the Higher Education Commission with the State Department of Education. The budget also calls for closing Brandenburg Center, a state-run, residential center for adults with disabilities near Cumberland. O’Malley also outlined plans to revamp the state’s pension and retirement program by increasing employee contributions and raising the retirement age for new hires. The plan is estimated to reduce the state’s unfunded retiree health liability by about $7 billion. O’Malley and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the largest union for state employees, recently reached a tentative three-year contract that includes the guarantee of no furloughs. The deal is scheduled to be ratified later this month. But O’Malley’s plan to revamp pensions and health benefits for state workers is likely to draw strong union opposition. “We’re going to fight like hell against it,” said Patrick Moran, the union’s state director. praised the President for simply making hard decisions. “I think the president hit a home run because he’s really talking about the future. If not a 10, maybe a 10 plus,” said Rep. Donna Edwards. “This is about the 21st century.” Edwards quickly pointed out that the President stressed his willingness to make sacrificial cuts but only of those programs that are not necessary. “But let’s make sure that we’re not doing it on the backs of our most vulnerable citizens,” Obama said to applause.
specificity on what programs might be cut in order to make up for a $400 billion freeze on annual domestic spending that the president proposed to start this year and extend for the next five years. “This freeze will require painful cuts,” President Obama said. “Already, we’ve frozen the salaries of hardworking federal employees for the next two years. I’ve proposed cuts to things I care deeply about, like
community action programs. The secretary of Defense has also agreed to cut tens of billions of dollars in spending that he and his generals believe our military can do without.” That one phrase, “community action programs” or CAPs, as they are formally known in cities across the nation, appears to be the wrench that caused concern among CBC members, including Cleaver. Community Action Programs, founded in the mid-1970s, help thousand of elderly and low income with
basic needs, such as food, financial literacy, and job search assistance. “The stuff that he said about cuts kind of worries me,” said Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who gave the speech a six-and-a-half, giving high marks for Obama’s discussion about increasing jobs by rebuilding America’s infrastructure. “[CAPS] are lifeline programs. Those are not luxury programs. These are programs that keep people subsisting. So what is he talking about?” The president’s speech, at the mid-term of his first four-
year term, was also watched closely by Black civil rights leaders. “We applaud the President for his foresight in recognizing that we need to prepare our workforce for the jobs of the future and to be able to compete with the rest of the world,” said National Urban League President Marc Morial said in a statement. He said he would continue to urge Congress to send “our limited resources to those youth and adults who have been disproportionately impacted by the recession - especially in our urban
communities - by adopting the NUL’s proposals on summer jobs, reforming our workforce development system, and enacting the Urban Youth Empowerment Program.” Rev. Jesse Jackson, whose Rainbow/PUSH Coalition has historically focused on strengthening the poor, said in an interview that he would give the speech high marks for inspiration, but it was missing a key element, he said. “He didn’t mention the word poverty and poverty is growing,” said Rev. Jackson. Still, some CBC members
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By Joi-Marie McKenzie Special to the AFRO After years of marriage, you know exactly how he likes his coffee. You know that she’s more of a night owl than a morning person. You’ve raised kids and now grandchildren together. You have even endured changes in finances because of retirement. You are together...but are you happy? As you mature in age, your love also matures. Longlasting relationships require creativity and commitment in order to remain fresh and fun. While unhappy couples are often left bitter because of indiscretions or issues that occurred earlier in the marriage, happier couples know how to let it go. They also know how to reinvent what makes their relationship so special. The AFRO reached out to younger married couples, who have been married 11 years or less, to uncover a novel perspective and find out how these couples keep their union fresh, new and strong. “And did I mention she’s really pretty?” asked Reginald Pickett, 38, when describing what attracted him to his wife. Reggie met his wife Natalie, 33, while working at the Washington Post in 2000. Their friendship evolved one night Courtesy Photo when the two hung out with a few Natalie and Reggie Pickett coworkers at Dave
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& Busters in White Flint, Md. “Chemistry sparked that night...it just started happening,” recalled Reginald. While on his way home from the outing, he called his future bride, who just so happened to be calling him at the same time. The two knew Younger couples offer advice to their elders on how to re-ignite the relationship flames. it wasn’t just any coincidence and they Stock Photos talked all the way home. Mo’Nique at a club in Laurel, Md. After nearly eight years of marriage and “From right then I fell in love because she knew my two children, Natalie and Reggie, who pen a relationship jokes,” Stacey said when Adrienne replayed some of his blog called “Love Notes by Reggie and Natalie,” have performance. “No one had knew my jokes before. ...I already figured out the secret to keeping their spark. fell in love right there.” “Every now and then you have to make a commitment The two laughed their way into each others hearts and to re-court and get to know your mate all over again,” after 11 years, the two have figured out what makes their explains Reggie. “You marriage tick. “Doing things together,” said Adrienne. change. What you “Of course we both have our own interests but we’re thought you wanted very supportive. … I always say it’s us against the to do 10 years ago is world.” not the same thing Their supportive nature paired with their ability to anymore.” accept each other for their strengths and weaknesses has The couple, who made a happy home for the Carvers. Stacey stressed that live in Largo, Md., an important value in their relationship is acceptance. enjoy frequent date He accepts his wife for who she is and who she isn’t. nights, watching chick “Adrienne is not the come home and ‘Baby, your flicks and enjoying dinner is ready’ type of woman. And I accept that.” each other’s company Instead of creating an argument, Stacey cooks meals for Courtesy Photo without their children. their family and tends to the house when he can. Both Adrienne Watson Adrienne and Stacey take a shared approach to creating Stacey and Adrienne Carver Carver, 41, met her a home for their three children, which has put less stress husband Stacey, 40, at on them individually and less stress on their marriage. a local gym. The two noticed each other while grooving Relationship expert Paul Carrick Brunson met in a hip-hop aerobics class. When Stacey approached his wife of 10 years, Jill, while the two attended Old Adrienne after class to say, “Good work out,” she Dominion University in Virginia. While taking a test in recognized him. Adrienne, a model and dance coach, Continued on B3 had just seen the comedian onstage opening up for
Homebound: Senior Sellers Stuck at Home
By Kyle Taylor Special to the AFRO Although it is currently in a state of recovery, the economy has had a drastic financial effect in many areas, especially the real estate market. Americans across the country have had to make minor and major adjustments to get by, including seniors who have had to put off settling into their golden years. Considered by some as an unnoticed consequence of the recession, seniors who would rather sell their houses so they can move into smaller lodgings, retirement communities or other assisted-living housing facilities have essentially become prisoners in their own homes. “It is a mixed issue,” said Rawle Andrews, senior state director of the AARP in Maryland. “When we do surveys, people overwhelmingly tell us if they have a choice, they would prefer coming home at the end of the day to their homes. Many people, if they can, will stay at home. But at some point, you reach the point where you can’t do it alone. Either you’re going to move or someone is going to move you. However, we’re certainly anticipating that this is something that we’re going to be looking very closely at.” With the economy expected to improve, analysts have predicted that it would eventually lead to an improvement in home sales as well. While it is still very early in the year, those expectations have remained guarded among would-be buyers and sellers, including seniors who have not been able to sell their homes. “We’re definitely hearing that this is a problem and people are trying to be creative solving it,” said Lauren Shaham, vice president of communications for the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA). According to Shaham, some of those creative solutions include facilities, which are facing depopulated waiting lists and rising vacancy rates, establishing relationships with real estate agents to assist prospective residents in selling their homes. Some communities have deferred their entry and up-front fees—ranging from $100,000 to $500,000—and others have collaborated with banks to develop programs to help homeowners secure loans. According to AAHSA, there are currently 39,500 assisted living facilities and 1,900 continuing care retirement communities in the United States. Close to 1 million people live in those residences with approximately 745,000 living in the retirement communities. Shaham noted that occupancy numbers in retirement communities and assisted living communities have gone up in 2010, which may be a sign of good things to come. According to the National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing and Care Industry (NIC), occupancy rates for independent and assistedliving facilities remained steady during the second and third quarters of 2010 at 87.7 percent, suggesting some stability. Everyday life stressors, such as trying to sell a home, are exactly what seniors seek to avoid by moving into a retirement home Shaham explained. “Retirement communities are much more of a lifestyle choice than a health care choice,” Shaham said. “They offer people freedoms from a lot of the hassles of daily living. A lot of the people there decide they don’t want to take care of a home anymore and like how the amenities are consolidated.” Before finalizing the move to a retirement or assisted-living community, Shaham suggested seniors examine the resources they need in order to make the change by understanding the living costs where they want to live. Once that conclusion is reached, then comes the hard part. To boost the chances of finding a buyer, the AARP suggests owners create a clever marketing plan and hire an experienced agent who is savvy at pushing property online. They also recommend inexpensive fixes to help the house sell such as a new paint in a neutral color, carpet cleaning and fresh landscaping. Paramount among those, however, is setting a realistic price and accepting the reality that it may be lower than what you’d like. The sooner this is accepted, the better, Shaham said. “People need to realize that home values are never going to be what they were before,” she said. “Even if they don’t reach that level, you can still sell your home for a profit and still have a nice nest egg. It might not be what it was five years ago, but it will probably be more than it was 40 years ago.”
AFRO Illustration/V. Johnson
Some seniors would rather give up the burden of their homes but have not been able to do so due to a lagging real estate market.
The Afro-American, Winter 2011
Bridging Generation Gaps to Inspire African-American Youth
By Jessica Harper Special to the AFRO A 2009 study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) revealed that Black teens and young adults are more prone to violence than their White counterparts. Despite that alarming fact, mentoring and counseling groups like the District-based Evolutionary Elders (EE) continue to inspire African-American youth to excel personally and professionally. Co-founder and author, Eugene Williams Sr., said the organization fights the odds by maintaining a positive outlook about the future of Black youth.”We don’t want to be bothered with defeatist attitudes,” Williams, 68, said. “Our goal is to work with mentors, counselors and organizations who have not given up on our children.” Evolutionary Elders seeks to heal social ills that plague African-American young men and women by bridging generational gaps. Members close these gaps by using education and positive reinforcement to reach Black youth. “We came together to forge this concept—soonto-become-movement—because we were really upset at some of the things we saw in families and also in schools,” William said. The Clinton, Md., resident established Evolutionary Elders in spring 2010 with his long-time friend Wetzel Witten, a 67-year-old community organizer from Washington, D.C. The two men bring together men and women that were born in the 1930s and 1940s, grew up in the 1950s and became social revolutionaries in the 1960s, to mentor and counsel young people and their families. These elders forfeit vacations in Miami to “liberate and elevate the thinking and actions” of Black youth. “We are an African people, and Negritude represents our attitude,” Witten said. “Therefore, we will never be senior citizens because senior citizens retire; Evolutionary Elders inspire.” Members inspire by venturing into schools, recreation centers and churches across the D.C. metro area with a two-pronged mission: to work with parents, guardians and educators to improve education (academics and athletics) and to teach Black youth about their history and respect for their elders. “Whether anybody accepts it or not, our schools and families are in crisis and our children are caught up in this,” Williams said. “As we see it, if something is not done soon, we will see our schools dissolve and become worse off than they are now.” Now 10 members strong, the group’s counselors include an eclectic mix of doctoral degree holders and activists; mathematicians and wordsmiths; athletes and musicians--each of whom share their knowledge with young mentees. Mary H. Johnson, a member of Evolutionary Elders, said psychological counseling warrants as much attention as academic tutoring. “The highest compliment I have received since I began working with EE came from a student who was asked, ‘Why do you go to the math center so often?’ Do you know what he said in response to that? ‘Because Dr. Johnson makes me feel like I’m somebody,’” Johnson said.
“Our goal is to work with mentors, counselors and organizations who have not given up on our children.”
Johnson said because many of the organization’s mentees receive little encouragement at home, it is incumbent on the mentors to remind them of their worth. “Our children fight so hard to feel accepted,” Johnson said. “Sometimes all it takes is for them to meet someone who says, ‘You can do it!’” Ed Brown, creator of YouTube’s social commentary program “The Ed Brown Show,” echoed Johnson’s sentiment. “Environment affects development,” Brown said. “Some of these kids have no one who cares whether or not they succeed.” Brown’s program covers topics ranging from politics to education, and featured guests include university presidents and local lawmakers. He said the elders’ experience is their greatest asset. “A child might pay more attention to someone who is much older,” Brown said. “An elder brings knowledge that other people don’t have. So when an elder says, ‘Study hard,’ they listen.” Williams and Witten said several students have changed their behavior since coming under their tutelage. “We mentored a 15-year-old boy, a very smart kid, who sold drugs. He told me, ‘I never thought about the consequences.’ So, I decided to give him a job designing our books,” Williams said. “Now, he tells me he’s staying out of trouble. On top of that, the work he produces for us is outstanding.” Evolutionary Elders collaborates with non-profit group Wise Educators.com and the Success and Learning Math Center in Upper Marlboro, Md., to provide quality tutoring and counseling services to their mentees. “We don’t want volunteers looking to benefit from the name, Evolutionary Elders. They must have a history of doing good things and want to continue to do that work,” Williams said. Elders interested in mentoring or counseling for Evolutionary Elders should contact Eugene Williams Sr. at (301) 768-8316 or email@example.com, or Wetzel Witten at Wit10men@verizon.net.
Eugene Wiliams Sr. has started a senior mentoring program to inspire and guide African-American youth.
Johnson holds a doctorate in mathematics education from University of Maryland-College Park and is married to Williams. The two founded Academic Resources Unlimited (ARU) in 2008. ARU is a non-profit that provides tutorial and communication services to high school students and educators.
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Winter 2011, The Afro-American
Body Gospel: Mixing Fitness with Faith
By Talibah Chikwendu AFRO Executive Editor Proper nutrition, exercise and healthy living are important for longevity and a productive life. Everyday people are looking for new ways to incorporate these into their lives, in meaningful and users sustainable ways. This has keep made the exercise/fitness on track, and nutrition industries big motivated and businesses, with people of moving forward all ages, ethnic groups and toward their income levels spending weight loss and into it. fitness goals. For Donna Courtesy images many Richardson Body Gospel, the people, Joyner is at the newest fitness bringing center of this offering from worship program, leading Donna Richardson into their Joyner, is the only the exercises and everyday fitness program on the reminding users activities market, according the to put God first in marketing materials, is also their life because that combines fitness important. that orientation with faith. So it will make comes improving their as no surprise that faith health possible. and fitness are being Out of the box, the most connected. Nor is it a bad useful of the tools are the match. Is it really possible Nutrition Guide, the Total for our physical being to Transformation Guide and reach its potential without the Basic 10 Fitness Cards. involving our spiritual The nutrition guide has being? The creation of simple, nutritious recipes Body Gospel seems to and details about managing indicate the answer is no. calories in a way that Body Gospel is makes losing weight less bge_clipboard_roberta_AfroSeniorGuide_1_29_Layout 1 1/25/11 3:24 PM an exercise/ nutrition program surrounded by Christian principles and religious music. It combines a variety of exercises and workouts with important tools to help complicated. The other two guides support the process of changing your life. These give details on small changes that make a difference and ways to track what you do and how you feel. These tools keep you conscious of the process and motivated by the accomplished milestones. Equally emphasized by the program is getting your body moving. Body Gospel comes with a piece of resistance equipment called the Body Gospel Band. It’s easy to assemble The workouts are sound and as with any program, will work if you work them. The music was good and there was always someone demonstrating the low-impact version on an exercise (in case your knees are not up to the pounding of high impact moves). The workouts include some kind of commercial for Shakeology – the antioxidant, vitamin, probiotic shake connected to the program. While the commercials are annoying, the shake is awful. After several tries, mixing it different ways – with juices and plain water – not even half a glass could be consumed. Others tried the various concoctions with even less success. No one could stomach enough of this to make a difference. Over all, Body Gospel is a good program, ideal for someone who wants a workout that acknowledges the influence of faith on moving towards a better life. But for the best experience, stick to the workouts and the motivational/nutritional guides and avoid Shakeology.
and is used in some of the workouts. The three disks of workouts each have a focus area: strength, power and core. There are multiple 30-minute workouts on each disk. The fourth disk is an audio that can be played while walking and running, to help you keep a steady pace and stay motivated.
Continued from B1
class, Paul began to notice the girl with the highest score in the class. Still, he remembers his future wife piqued his interest with her smile. “Typically, if a male is interested in having a long Courtesy Photo term relationship, they are gravitated toward the face, Paul and Jill Brunson the eyes or the smile,” Paul explained. “It was funny because Jill had braces at the time but her smile was still on it.” And although it was the smile that got his attention, it was her curves that kept it. “I’m not going to deny that at all,” he adds. Brunson, along with other relationship experts, stress the need for older couples to maintain romance and intimacy throughout their marriage. According to Brunson, men who are in long-lasting Page 1 relationships have an improved sex life. And in an
established marriage, it’s not only important to make sure your partner’s sexual desires are met, but it’s also important to create intimacy. Giggling, holding hands and being physically close are ways to recreate that spark. “When it’s cold at night, it’s great to be able to snuggle up and spoon somebody,” Brunson adds. Each married couple, the Picketts, the Carvers and the Brunsons can remind older couples of what’s important. While the Picketts encourage couple to recreate their relationship to keep it fresh, the Carvers stress that doing activities together will keep a relationship strong. And matchmaker and relationship expert Brunson pushes intimacy, even in your golden years, to light the fire in your partnership. Ultimately, however, you know the nuances of your relationship, so trust your instinct to know what’s right for you and your spouse. Regardless, don’t be afraid to try something new. You never know, a new hobby, a change of scenery or a break from the grandchildren may be the thing to kick you out of your marital plateau and make you feel like young lovers again.
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The Afro-American, Winter 2011
and long-term investment. When disposable funds are fewer than in workplace years, older consumers can be particularly at-risk to incur debts that tarnish the golden years. Or as the O-Jays sang, it’s that “almighty dollar” that can change you – especially when there’s not enough to provide for yourself or your family. For example, long-time homeowners with title to their homes or nearing the end of mortgage payments might be lured into a reverse mortgage. As a loan against market value, reverse mortgages can be a transaction that enables borrowers to turn that value into ready cash without selling the property. However, before signing on the dotted line for a reverse mortgage, borrowers should clearly understand that they are signing an end of life loan. Full repayment is required when either the borrower passes away or no longer lives in the residence for more than a year. Any absence due to year-long extended health care, such as rehab or assisted living facilities will make the loan due. Overdraft, another debt trap, may offer a convenient way to pay for purchases; but if there is no cushion in the account or consumer checkbooks aren’t accurately balanced, overdraft fees that average $34 per transaction can quickly siphon off disposable income. Even worse, consumers only learn of the charges after the statement arrives. Rather than incur the risk of overdraft fees that each year strip $23.7 billion from checking account holders, it is better to decline overdraft than to accept it. Unauthorized overdrafts strip fees from Americans 55 and older at the level of $4.5 billion per year. Nearly $1 billion of that comes from people who are heavily dependent on Social Security income. Even worse than overdraft fees are payday loans that promise quick and easy cash without credit checks. In recent months, many payday lenders began accepting unemployment checks or disability benefits as income. Yet what the marketing and advertising do not share is how only a very small percentage of payday borrowers are actually able to retire their short-term loan in two weeks. The vast majority of payday borrowers – 12 million each year – become trapped into a turnstile of repeat loans and high-cost fees that result in more money being paid for interest and fees than the amount borrowed. Meanwhile, payday lenders reap $5 billion annually. The sobering reality for everyone is that there will always be lenders that would like to take away some of your hard-earned income and savings, just as financial advisors have an array of recommended strategies for preparing for retirement in a post-recession era. But, it is far wiser for people regardless of age to make regular savings a part of your financial plan. With every paycheck, start and keep saving. Emergencies, unexpected expenses, and vacations, can all be managed, if dollars are set aside on a consistent basis. If you’re unable to begin saving right now, consider saving a portion of any tax refund received this year to offset the amount of money you expect to need over the year. Ideally, everyone should have a personal financial cushion that enables them to maintain their lifestyles without going into debt. A keen awareness combined with a sensible and practical personal strategy can together chart a path to sustainable financial growth in spite of any market downturn. To paraphrase the words of the O’Jays, don’t let money – or lenders – fool you. Charlene Crowell is the Center for Responsible Lending’s communications manager for state policy and outreach. She can be reached at: Charlene.crowell@ responsiblelending.org.
How Baby Boomers Can Retire Despite a Downturned Economy
By Charlene Crowell NNPA Columnist More than 10,000 baby boomers will turn 65 each day during the next two decades, says AARP, the nation’s leading organization on elder issues. The generation that grew up with changes in social mores, music, and more now faces a particularly challenging time to leave the workplace. But what’s a person to do with the rest of their lives, if they were born between the years of 1946 and 1964? Especially when current economic trends and measures are more down than up, who can really afford to retire? Kiss goodbye the days of secure pensions and gold watches for decades of service. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, only 15 percent of the workforce today has a traditional pension plan. Instead, 401(k)s in the private sector and 403(b)s in public and not-for-profit organizations are the likely alternative plans. These benefits are tied to stock market performance. When the market performs well, benefits boom; but conversely, benefits diminish when the market performs poorly. Also gone are the days when owning a house meant sure-fire wealth building. Eleven million Americans now owe more than their home is worth. Boomers hoping to downsize to smaller spaces may find that while unemployment hovers near 10 percent, prospective homebuyers may be waiting for the job market to improve before making such a large
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January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
McArthur Bishop presents the “Redeeming the Soul of America Award” to Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker greets Sheila Stewart, community affairs director, Radio One-DC.
The Southern Christian leadership Conference, Prince George’s chapter, held its annual “MLK Birthday Banquet” Jan. 16 at the LaFontaine Bleue in Lanham, Md. The celebration opened with chapter President McArthur Bishop introducing Howard University graduate and emcee Natalie Wilson. The event hosted numerous community leaders and elected officials, including Congresswoman Donna Edwards, D-Md., Sen. C. Anthony Muse, D-Md., Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker, Councilman Mel Franklin and state SCLC president, the Rev. Dr. Ruby Moon, who also serves as chaplain for the national chapter. Dr. Mickey Burnim, president of Bowie State University, was the event’s guest speaker, while honorees included the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and Muse for their activism and community spirit. USAF Ret. Maj. Dr. James Dula honored war veterans including Army Lt. Emily Perez, who died in the line of duty in Iraq.
McArthur Bishop presents the ”Constituency Advocate Award” to Sen. C. Anthony Muse, D-Md.
McArthur Bishop, Prince George’s SCLC chapter president, presents the “Member Dedication and Longevity Award” to the Rev. James McCord. McArthur Bishop presents the “Community Leading Light Award” to Dr. Mickey Burnim, president, Bowie State University.
Dr. James Dula, chapter member, speaks to the guests about military veterans.
Congresswoman Donna Edwards, D-Md., and Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker
Anne White, program co-chairwoman
Verbenia Kennedy, Janet P. Caldwell, Millicent Edgar, Joanne Ocasio, Donna Edwards and Joyce Alston Presentation of Colors by an Air Force JROTC Unit
Photos by Rob Roberts
Mistress of ceremony, Natalie Wilson, CTV
The Prince William County Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority (PWCACPhotos by Rob Roberts DST) sponsored the “26th Annual King Day Celebration” and “21st Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Youth Oratorical Competition” at the Hylton Memorial Chapel, Woodbridge, Va. Under the theme “Voices of Character and Courage,” middle and high school-aged orators competed with Jacob Gonzalez (Parkside Middle School) and Alice Gyamfi (Hylton High School), and were named Toshiro Stovall, chapter president; Sandra Mitchell, cowinners in their respective categories. Other finalists included chairwoman, MLK Committee and Dr. Ritchie Carroll, Hannah Wied, Jawuanna McAlister, Attique Sydea and Seth OpokuFinalists Jawuanna McAlister, front row-left, Jacob chairwoman, Delta Education and Public Service Foundation Yeboah. Each winner received U.S. saving bonds and cash prizes. Gonzalez and Hannah Wied. Alice Gyamfi, second rowThe competition also included remarks from left, Seth Opoku-Yeboah and Attiqua Sydea Thelma Daley, senior adviser to the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW), who honored the late civil rights icon Dr. Dorothy Height, and Congressman Gerry Connolly, D-Va., who offered the students congratulatory remarks. The MLK Community Choir, under the direction of I. Lawrence Coleman, provided musical entertainment. Members of Pi Lambda Lambda chapter, Omega Psi Phi Toshiro Stovall is the Prince Fraternity William County Alumnae Chapter members Lorraine Morales, Raven Thompson, Congressman Chapter’s president Connie Andrews and Sandra Mitchell Gerry Connolly, and Sheila Bryant D-Va., brings and Sandra Mitchell special remarks served as event cochairwomen. Youth members of Jack and Jill of America, Manassas-Woodbridge chapter MLK Community Choir under the direction of I. Lawrence Coleman Chase Allen
Members of the Prince William County Alumnae chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Middle school contest winner Jacob Gonzalez, Dr. Richie Carroll, Dr. Thelma Daley and Toshiro Stovall, chapter president
Alice Gyamfi, one of the high school finalists, presents her speech
High school contest winner Alice Gyamfi with her very proud father with Dr. Carroll, Dr. Daley and Toshiro Stovall, chapter president
MLK Oratorical Contest participants
Dr. Thelma Daley pays tribute to the life and legacy of Dr. Dorothy I. Height
Northwest Virginia Section: Valeria Brown, Juanita McKinney, Alice Davis, Mamie James, Rita Anderson, Dr. Thelma Daly, senior advisor, NCNW; Helen Ames, Gloria Jackson, chapter president, Renee Holiday, Brenda Lewis and Marion Carter
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
Prince George’s Community College (PGCC) has been ranked one of the nation’s top 50 fastest growing two-year colleges according to Community College Week’s ranked 48th for its 13 percent increase in credit student enrollment, from 12,110 in 2008 to 13,685 in 2009.
‘Community College Week’ Ranks PGCC among Top 50 Fastest Growing Colleges
In fall 2010, 14,814 credit students enrolled, which represents an 8.2 percent increase over fall 2009. The college offers students more than 200 academic, workforce development and continuing education programs including hospitality services management, public safety and law, teacher education, health studies, visual communication and information security. “At a time of economic recession people realize how important the role of community colleges plays in retraining our workforce,” said Tracy A. Harris, PGCC’s dean of enrollment services, in a statement. “The college has managed to increase enrollment because of its ability to adapt and offer programs that prepare students well for today’s growing career fields,” added Harris. Community College Week based its research on U.S. Department of Education data that only includes students enrolled in courses that lead to a postsecondary degree or other formal award. The publication ranks the colleges in order of percentage change in student count. For more information on the report, visit www. ccweek.com.
Prince George’s Community College has seen growth in its student population over the past two years.
Community Center Renamed in Honor of D.C. Activist Reginald ‘Kiyi’ Ballard
District native Reginald “Kiyi” Ballard was passionate about his community and more specifically, local youth. Although he died nearly five years ago, Ballard’s legacy remains evident in Northeast Washington, D.C., where the Rosedale Recreation Center will be renamed the Reginald “Kiyi” Ballard Recreation Center on Feb. 7. Ward 6 Councilman Tommy Wells serves as the event’s host. Ballard worked as a recreation center director in the Langston, Kelly Miller, Douglas and Benning-Stoddert communities where he formed strong friendships with local children, their families and area school officials. He later volunteered to work with pre-school children, teachers and parents at the Rosedale Recreation Center on 16th Street N.E. There, he established “Puppets with a Purpose,” a familyfriendly program that became a citywide success. Demand for Courtesy Photo Ballard’s puppet shows grew, and he often traveled to Maryland and Virginia with his staff. Reginald “Kiyi” Ballard In addition, the Morgan State University alum and athletics Hall of Fame inductee created several clubs for senior citizens; some still operate today. Ballard never lost his love for the area’s children and young adults and for several years awarded a scholarship to at least one deserving student at his alma mater Cardozo High School, along with his wife, Sarah. The Ballards also helped raise more than $300,000 for scholarship funding at Morgan State. The Rosedale Recreation Center renaming ceremony takes place Feb. 7, 7-9 p.m., at 16th St. N.E. Continued on D3
January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
Phil Adé By Gregory Dale AFRO Staff Writer Infectious beats and clever lyrics are the components of tracks constructed by rapper Phil Adé. But while he may be one of a handful of emcees attempting to put the DMV region the map, his material certainly proves that he’s in a league of his own. “My music is free,” Adé told the AFRO in a recent interview. “I like to try a lot of different things. I rap and I sing--[I don’t] have one particular sound.” Perhaps that’s the reason why he’s experienced so much success in such little time. After being signed to D.C. R&B crooner Raheem DeVaughn’s 368 Music Group in 2008, Adé has picked up a sizeable fan base, been featured in a bevy of music magazines and has worked with a string of notable artists. His latest mixtape, The Letterman, featured appearances by rappers Wale, Tabi Bonney and Raekwon and was hosted by popular mixtape DJ and hip-hop producer Don Cannon. But the 22 year old’s popularity surely
didn’t occur overnight. Born as an Army brat to a Nigerian father and a Grenadian mother, Adé was reared in Maryland’s in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. He developed a passion for rapping early on, but he didn’t seriously pursue it until after enrolling in college in Alabama. A twist of fate landed him an opportunity to meet DeVaughn and Adé was signed to the singer’s Districtbased 368 label shortly thereafter. He then transferred to Montgomery College in Rockville, Md. so he could perform at shows throughout the D.C. region. “I think I decided to just go into music because I felt like I had a good shot at it,” Adé said. “So I just wanted to ride it out to see where it took me.” After ultimately dropping out of school, his parents, both sticklers for education, were not happy about his decision. “[With] my father [being] Nigerian and my mother being from the West Indies, you know they’re not trying to hear that you’re going to quit school and become a rapper,” he said. “It was a little rough, but they’re cool now. They still don’t like it…but they still love me and respect my decision.” Now, Adé is being hailed by rap fans as a “breath of fresh air” for hip-hop, and many music connoisseurs have compared his work to rap’s celebrated “golden era.” Adé is also one out of a recent string of DMV-area rappers who have garnered wide mainstream attention now more than ever before. With rappers like Wale, Bonney and a few others all touting the District and its surrounding area on their radio hits, Adé believes it’s time to finally shed light on one of the nation’s best kept secrets. “The whole DMV region is like an untapped market,” he said. “There’s so much to offer here and I think it’s because we like having our stuff to ourselves and keeping it at home. I think I’m just playing my role.” For more information on Phil Ade, visit www.368musicgroup.com.
Sinbad fashion trends, and cultural fads from each decade. Each week, TV One will feature a Heroes, Newsmakers, Icons and Celebs (HNIC) segment in which “Washington Watch” host Roland Martin will provide a look back at the major news events of the day. The fourth week of Way Black When: Primetime, Feb. 21-25, will offer a “Best Of” week that will feature the best interviews, comedy sketches and performances of the prior three weeks, plus original, unseen material, with the best of the ‘70s airing on Feb. 21; the best of the ‘80s airing on Feb. 22; the best of the ‘90s airing on Feb. 23, plus an all-stand-up comedy show on Feb. 24 and an all-musical performance show on Feb. 25. Each weeknight at 11 p.m., TV One will also pair “Way Black When” with decade-specific movies, including such films from the ‘70s as Cooley High and Cotton Comes to Harlem, from the ‘80s as Harlem Nights and from the ‘90s as Juice. “Last year during Our History Month we introduced the concept of ‘Way Black When,’ a celebration of recent popular black culture, with vignettes that really resonated with our audience,” said TV One Senior Vice President of Original Programming Toni Judkins in a prepared statement. “In 2011, we wanted to build on that concept and provide a fullfledged programming experience that will allow us to bring together some of our biggest stars and to celebrate, more fully, the many poignant, entertaining and groundbreaking events and moments in black culture that took place during the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s.”
The Zora! Festival – a Rare Blend of Education, Fun and Sun
popular cultural and literary festivals take place during the first quarter of the year when record lows plague most of the country. One of Florida’s most notable literary festivals kicked off in Eatonville, just six miles north of Orlando, on Jan. 22. The Zora! Festival, held annually for more than 20 years, combines literature, art, fashion, music and culture with warmer weather, sunshine and a variety of other nearby activities. Author Zora Neale Hurston, namesake of the popular literary festival, was enamored with her hometown of Eatonville, the oldest incorporated African-American municipality in the United States. Offerings at the festival include a new children’s play zone featuring an area with activities for children ranging from infant to five years old. D.C. metro area residents can enjoy a pre-travel treat to get into the spirit of the festival by a visit to Eatonville restaurant – the Washington, D.C. eatery named for Hurston’s hometown. Eatonville restaurant hosts “Food and Folklore,” a monthly series intertwining storytelling with cuisine. January’s “Food and Folklore” took place Jan. 23 and featured special guest Lucy Anne Hurston, Zora’s niece. Zora Hurston’s work was out of print for a time, but at age 9, Lucy discovered a copy of Their Eyes Were Watching God in her family’s attic and eventually worked to establish the Zora Neale Hurston Trust. Hurston began her writing career during the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s, when African- American artists explored, celebrated and publicized their heritage. Her career piqued in the 1930s with the publication of Their Eyes Were Watching God, a novel she wrote in seven weeks. The folk tales she collected and short stories and novels she published would eventually alter the landscape of literature throughout the United States and in other parts of the world. Hurston gathered insight for her works by traveling throughout the United States and the Caribbean, including visits to Jamaica, Haiti, Honduras and other islands. She collected oral tales from the varied African-American communities. The Zora! Festival features concerts, plays, seminars, discussion panels, tours, food, arts and crafts, and many other African-American inspired exhibits. For more information, go to VISITFLORIDA.COM.
Each year the Zora! festival showcases cultural and artistic performances from international performers. While winter chills lead indulgent thoughts southward, unique celebrations of Florida’s rich cultural history and heritage justifies visiting the state for a rare blend of education, fun and sun. Florida’s warm weather throughout the year makes it the perfect destination to escape from cold temperatures and mundane activities. A variety of Florida’s
The Memory of Love The Memory of Love chronicles a devastating civil war that has left an entire population with emotional scars in Sierra Leone, West Africa. This compassionate novel deals with the never ending struggle between good and evil in the haunting atmosphere of war. The human mind and spirit are brutally put on display as the story unfolds. As the 2003 Samuel Johnson prize winner for The Devil That Danced on the Water the author, Aminatta Forna hasn’t let the reader down. Forna shows how the conflict of war can make humans do the unthinkable. Now living in London, Forna is attempting to mend the education, agricultural and health disparities in Sierra Leone. Final word: A heart-wrenching tale of war and the conflict between good and evil. Available now. For more information, go to www.
groveatlantic.com Provident Hospital: A Chronology of the Baltimore Hospital 1894-1986 Provident Hospital has a rich history in Baltimore’s Black community. Founded in 1894 by a small conglomerate of African-American doctors, the hospital flourished into one of only five Black hospitals in the U.S. that offered specialty training. However, funding problems led to the storied hospital’s closing in 1986 and it was later renamed Liberty Medical Center. In Provident Hospital: A Chronology of the Baltimore Hospital, Sarah Davis Elias, a Morgan State University graduate, delves deeply into the hospital’s history, its founders and legacy in Baltimore. The 291-page book is filled with archived pictures, charts and newspaper clippings, making the book a more interesting read. Final word: A must-have for Baltimore history buffs.
Extended through February 20!
Rapper Phil Adé: The Newest Face of DMV Hip-Hop
TV One Takes Viewers Way ‘Black’ When
To celebrate Black History Month, beginning Jan. 31 at 10 p.m., and airing each weeknight over four weeks, TV One will present “Way Black When,” a month of high-profile programming designed to reflect back on the golden age of black culture that emerged during the 1970s, ‘80s and ‘90s. The centerpiece of the initiative is “Way Black When: Prime Time,” a high-energy, onehour talk show that will showcase Black pop culture icons across three decades – the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s “including actors, comedians, athletes, musicians and many more” from Black Power through hip hop. Guiding a live studio audience and television viewers on their trip back through “blackness,” will be three hosts, each of whom embodies a decade’s essence. Comedian and actor Sinbad will conduct a voyage through the ‘70s, Niecy Nash keeps it moving and groovin’ through the ‘80s and comedian and actor Chris ‘Kid’ Reid picks up the final leg of the “Way Black When” journey with ‘90s hip hop. Each night, guests who characterize the specific week’s decade will be showcased, along with a musical act and a comedian who provide the tunes and the tone of the time. The series will include a “Retro Trek” segment of nightly comedic sketches spoofing memorable hairstyles,
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
Tim Lacy’s ‘Another Viewpoint’ on afro.com
Howard Hires New Football Coach
By Stephen D. Riley AFRO Staff Writer
now.” Howard hired Louis “Skip” Perkins in October as its new director of athletics to shake up the school’s entire athletic Harrell on Jan. 6 was named as the new football coach to department. Perkins wasted no time in hiring a new basketball get the school’s football program back on track. Under the coach in an attempt to revive the program. Now, he turns to the direction of former football coach Cary Bailey, the Howard football team. Bison football team was fading fast. Hired in 2007, the fourAs a former wide receiver, Harrell has the inside scoop on year coach had guided the Bison to an 8-36 record during his the program that his players will surely relate to. tenure, prompting the university “I love everything about Howard University,” Harrell to make a change. said at his introductory press conference on Jan. 19. With a string of losing “There’s no doubt in mind that I’m going to come in with seasons circling the program, more loyalty and commitment.” Harrell has his work cut out for Harrell was an integral piece to the last great Howard him. Howard hasn’t celebrated team, which in 1993 was named the Black college football a winning season since 2004 champion following an undefeated season. More recently, when the club finished 6-5, Harrell starred as the Bowie State Bulldogs offensive which has prompted local coordinator, helping to direct the school to a 6-4 finish last high school athletes to choose season. other universities with more Although Harrell comes with a valuable football prominent football programs pedigree, the new head coach focused his introductory in recent years. But those are speech on assuring alumni and school associates that his Courtesy Photo/Howard University players would be competing as winners but leaving as early challenges that Harrell expects Gary Harrell to meet as he tries graduates. to get the program back on “I came to Howard University in 1990, graduated in track. 1994, that’s my most prized award,” Harrell said. “To be able “Being a first time head coach is going to be rough, but I’m to come in here in 1990 and graduate in four years from the the type of person who loves competition, I love a challenge,” school of business was very instrumental to me. We are the best Harrell said. “I want to get right back to where we were before in the country and we have to carry ourselves in that manner on and I know we can. We won before so I know we can win right the academic side as well as the athletic side.”
Lady Firebirds’ Win Streak Snapped by Fayetteville State
By Perry Green AFRO Sports Editor The University of the District of Columbia women’s basketball team, the Lady Firebirds, finally saw their winning run come to an end after a recent loss to the Fayetteville State University Lady Broncos on Jan. 24 at the Capel Arena in Fayetteville, N.C. The Lady Firebirds had won five straight games, including victories over Salem International, Philadelphia University, Central State and King College. Their streak began on Jan. 3 with a win over Fayetteville State at the UDC Complex in Washington. But the Lady Broncos gained revenge Monday with a 69-62 home win over UDC to split the season series. The win didn’t come easy
for Fayetteville State, though. The Lady Firebirds recorded a 9-0 scoring run in the first half to stretch their game-high lead to 10 points. UDC led 33-27 at the halftime break, but the Lady Broncos managed to come back, outscoring the Lady Firebirds 42-29 in the second half. Fayetteville State was able to outperform UDC in the second half by containing star forward Lillian McGill, who averages double-digits in points and rebounds per game. McGill scored only eight points, seven of them scored in the first half, but still pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds. But while McGill struggled offensively for UDC, Lady Broncos’ Tiffany Haywood was able to go on a second half 15-point scoring surge. Haywood led the game with 19 total points, while her teammates LaQuasha Jordan and Amanda Sinclair joined in with 12 points and 10 points, respectively. Fayetteville State now improves to a 5-11 overall record, while UDC drops to 12-7 overall on the season. The Lady Firebirds will see their next action against the King College Tornadoes in Bristol, Tenn., on Feb. 3. They edged King, 66-62, back on Jan. 8 in a home game.
Thornton Leads McNamara Charge against McConnell
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By Stephen D. Riley AFRO Staff Writer
For the past several seasons, McNamara senior guard Marcus Thornton has been the team’s doeverything-combo guard. The 6-foot-3, 170-pound Thornton does it all, from handling the point guard duties to pouring in buckets as an explosive shooting guard. The William & Mary recruit was at it again on Jan. 21, exploding for 34 points to help his fifth-ranked (Washington Post) squad take down Arlington, Va.’s No. 11 O’Connell Knights, 75-61. McNamara (17-3) jumped out to a 13-0 lead and never looked back, as they cruised to their eighth Washington Catholic Athletic Conference (WCAC) win of the season. O’Connell (13-4) never threatened the visiting team, despite numerous tactics to cool Thornton’s hot hand. Flashing his trademark crossover dribble and silky jump shot, Thornton was a one-man wrecking crew for McNamara, who managed to place two other players in double figures. After getting off to a slow start in their Jan. 7 64-53 defeat of then-topranked DeMatha, McNamara has come out of the gate fast in every game since that loss compiling a 5-1 record. “Come out harder from the jump and box out,” Thornton said of his team’s new approach to the early moments of games. The new mindset now has McNamara atop the WCAC with DeMatha, now third-ranked, and O’Connell ranked second. No. 6 overall Gonzaga is currently fourth in the division.
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January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
Jan. 27 ‘His Eye is on the Sparrow’ Metrostage, 1201 North Royal St., Alexandria, Va. 8 p.m. Witness an inspirational musical about the life of the renowned African-American singer and Broadway actress Ethel Waters. Production ends March 20. $25$50. For more information: 703548-9044. Lessons From The Death of Mohammed Busboys & Poets, 2021 14th St., N.W. D.C. 9 p.m. Concerned citizens, activists and law students are invited to attend and share their views about the investigation into the controversial death of Ali Mohammed at this teach-in and town hall meeting. For more information: (202) 656-9656. Jan. 28 Meeting At the Alley Cat Alley Cat, 2 S. Whiting St., Alexandria, Va. 7-10 p.m. DMV Billiards Group will host this meet and greet featuring free pool lessons and drink specials. Also enjoy video games, darts and foosball. For more information: www. alleycatalexandria.com. Jan. 29 Salute To ExcellenceCommunity Education Awards Luncheon The Sheraton Washington North, 4095 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, Md., 11:30 a.m. The Ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha’s Educational Advancement Foundation of the North Atlantic Region will host an awards luncheon designed to recognize those in the community who have made a difference in nontraditional educational ways to create an environment where the youth can grow and develop a love of lifetime learning. $50. For more information: www. akaeaf.org. Phelps High School Open House Phelps High School, 704 26th St., N.E. D.C. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Phelps Architecture, Construction and Engineering High School will host an open house/tour for the 2011-2012 school year. The school is accepting applications for the next school year’s rising ninth-graders and a small number of seats will be offered to rising 10th-graders. For more information: 202-729-4360. Dream Big 2011 Conference Hampton Inn Washington, 9421 Largo Drive, Largo, Md. 12 p.m. Motivational speakers will inform you on how to change your dreams into a reality. $35$45. For more information: 240550-7403. Harambee Dinner Club DMV Business Networking Old Town Inn, 14745 Main St., Upper Marlboro, Md. 4-5 p.m. Baltimore and Washington D.C. metropolitan area business owners will convene for this networking event. $5. For more information: bmorenews1. eventbrite.com. Jan. 30 The Capitol Jazz Project-Concerts for Young People By Young People Kennedy Center, Millennium Stage, 2700 F St., N.W. D.C. 6 p.m. The Capitol Jazz Project provides support for music education in select schools through a series of coaching sessions in music performance through classroom study, master classes and concerts with local artists in the field. For more information: 1-800-444-1324. Feb. 1 One Woman’s Lasting Legacy: Henrietta Lacks Billingsley House Museum, 6900 Green Landing Road, Upper Marlboro, Md. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. This exhibit showcases the work of Henrietta Lacks, a tobacco farmer from Virginia who developed cervical cancer when she was 30 and left a legacy that strongly impacted modern medicine. For more information: 301-627-0730.
‘The Life & Times of Fannie Lou Hamer’ Publick Playhouse, 5445 Landover Road, Cheverly, Md. 10:15 a.m. In this production, witness a true testament of the life and times of African Americans in the Deep South
during the Civil Rights era. $6. For more information: 301-2771710. Feb. 2 Black History Month Film Festival Huntington Community
Center, 1322 8th St., Bowie Md. 4:30 p.m. Enjoy socially conscious Black cinema from the past and present. For more information: 301-464-3725. Feb. 4 Black History ‘Jeopardy’
Bladensburg Community Center, 4500 57th Ave., Bladensburg, Md. 7-9 p.m. Test your knowledge of Black History Month facts with this interactive version of the popular television show. For more information: 301-277-2124.
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The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
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Church Host Forum The Zion Baptist Church Parent Ministry, in conjunction with the Nineteenth Street Baptist K N RUMS UM CKS KS Church’s Youth Ministries, will hold a Parent and Youth Forum at 7 p.m. on Jan. 28 at Zion located at 4850 Blagden Ave. N.W. The forum, hosted by the Rev. Keith W. Byrd Sr., pastor AC ACK RI HS BEEF HS BEEF BACK RIB of Zion, and the Rev. Dr. Derrick Harkins, pastor of Nineteen Street Baptist Church, will be open to youth age 12 to 18 years of age and their parents, who are encouraged to get involved TEAKS CH CKE THI in their children’s spiritual walk. Others in the community are also invited to attend this H KE TH BACK RIBS important ministry. Call Min. Dwayne Coley at 202-722-4940 or Tracie Robertson at 202-8292773 for additional information.
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Prayer Service The Washington Theological Consortium and the Consortium Student Board invite the public to attend the Prayer Service for Christian Unity Consortium Ecumenism Award and the Annual Figel Address at 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 2 at the Howard University School of Divinity located at 1400 Shepherd St. N.E. The Ecumenism Award will be presented to CME Bishop Thomas L. Hoyt Jr., former president of the National Council of Churches. He will deliver the Figel Address. The senior bishop and 48th bishop of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Thomas Lanier Hoyt Jr., was the first of the two bishops elected in the 1994 General Conference held in Memphis, Tenn. He came to the Episcopal office as a preacher and distinguished scholar in theological education. A reception will follow service. The event is open free to the public but reservations are encouraged. Call 202-832Courtesy Photo 2675 for additional information. The e-mail address is wtc@ Bishop Thomas L. Hoyt Jr. washtheocon.org.
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R. Clinton Washington, 75
The Rev. Dr. R. Clinton Pastor Washington married Washington was born in the love of his life, Lois R. Fauquier County, Va., on Gilbert, on Sept. 7, 1958, and Nov. 2, 1935. He was the from this union, four children eldest of nine children were born. born to deacon Robert L. In February 1966, Pastor Washinton and Gladys Washington delivered his Washington. He was initial sermon and was educated in the Fauquier ordained as minister on Feb. County Public School 18, 1967. In just a short System. At an early age, he period of time, he was elected was baptized by the Rev. to serve as acting pastor J.P. Baltimore and became in 1968 and by unanimous a member of the Mt. Morris decision was selected pastor Baptist Church in Hume, Va. of the Jerusalem Baptist In 1953 his family moved Church on Jan. 31, 1968, to Washington, D.C., where where he served as pastor for R. CLINTON he united with the Jerusalem 40 years and maintained the Baptist Church under the title of pastor emeritus until WASHINGTON leadership of the late Rev. his death. Augustus Lewis. Washington was a member Washington was a graduate of the of the Fellowship and Dramatic Guild, gospel Washington Baptist Seminary, Urban chorus, senior usher board and male chorus. Institute, Howard University School of He served faithfully in the above capacities Religion, Inter-Met Theological Seminary and until the church recommended that he serve Hampton University Minister’s Conference. as a trial deacon and was later made a full In 1988, Washington received an honorary pledge deacon of Jerusalem Baptist Church. doctorate of divinity from the Richmond Because of his faithfulness as a deacon Virginia Seminary. he was promoted to the position of acting chairman to the deacon board. Continued on D1
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January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
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Robert L. Plummer Sr., 92
Funeral Home Director
Robert Lawrence Plummer Sr. was born in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 4, 1918, the youngest of two children born to Mayme Howard and Robert Lawrence Plummer I. He departed this life at the age of 92 on Jan. 9 at The Washington Home and Hospice in Washington, D.C. Robert excelled in military science and football at Armstrong High School, where he graduated in 1938. Before joining the Army in 1941, he served as an apprentice embalmer at the John T. Rhines Co. During World War II, Robert rose to the rank of staff sergeant. In 1946, he worked briefly in the Government Printing Office before returning to Rhines. He had become well acquainted with the funeral business as a child, when he would accompany his father, then manager, on service calls. Robert would later recall, “I decided then that I would rather be a funeral director than anything else in the world.” Robert’s father inherited and operated the business until his death in 1950. Robert met Hazel L. Roberts after the war. Early in his military service he had performed the duties of cook and easily impressed Hazel with his skills. They were married on Jan. 31, 1948, in Washington, D.C. Robert became the owner of the John T. Rhines Co. in 1950, upon the death of his father. Robert and Hazel formed an exceptional partnership as their dreams of ownership and expansion took shape. The birth of their son, Robert L. Plummer Jr., in 1951, brought them tremendous joy. In order to pursue their goals and watch their young son grow, Bob went to work with them each morning with day care lovingly provided by the John T. Rhines Co. staff. The Plummer family was complete with the arrival of daughter Agnes Laetitia Plummer. Robert balanced full work weeks with short, family getaways. The vision of building a “new” Rhines became a driving force for them when the original site at Third and I streets S.W. was to be lost to urban renewal in Southwest, D.C. In 1958, the new building at 3015 12th St., N.E. in Brookland, was the first free-standing building in the city designed specifically as a funeral home.
Gazelda Reneé Herring of the adult choir and was was born on Sept. 5, 1968, an active member of the through the union of her Department of Labor’s loving parents, the late gospel choir since 2001. Clayton Herring and Paula A. In 1987, Renee had a Herring in Tarboro, N.C. baby girl and named her At age 6, Reneé and Tierra Monique. In 1991 she family moved to Washington, married Thomas L. Williams D.C. She was educated in Sr. and from this union came the Prince George’s County Alexis Domonique and public schools and graduated Thomas Lee “TJ” Williams from Suitland High School in Jr. June 1986. Upon completion Affectionately known of high school, she began as “Nae,” she had an her career in the federal outgoing personality, a zest government as a secretary at for life, and an incredible the Department of the Interior sense of humor. She was G. RENEÉ WILLIAMS and studied to become a sociable, often known as paralegal. White furthering her the life of the party, and career, she accepted a secretarial position at enjoyed entertaining her family and friends the U.S. Department of Transportation and by telling jokes. She was also known as an later advanced to becoming a transportation impressionist and could impersonate virtually industry analyst. She celebrated 25 years of anyone she came across. Reneé’s first love federal service in October 2010. was her children. She showed them great Reneé accepted Jesus Christ as her care and adored them tremendously. Her second love and passion was exercising her personal savior at a young age and was gift of song, especially when she sang with baptized by Elder Dr. F.D. Shumate at the great anointing a favorite of hers, “To Live Christian Congregational Church of Faith is Christ and To Die is Gain.” She was the in Forestville, Md. She was known for her female lead singer of the R&B Band X-Factor public declaration of her love of the Lord. and performed throughout the Washington She served as the church clerk, was a member metropolitan area.
Obituaries are printed for free by the AFRO-American Newspapers the last week of each month. Send funeral program and picture to: Obituaries, Baltimore AFRO-American Newspaper, 2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218
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The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011
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Superior Court of the District of Columbia Civil Division Case No. 0000158-11 IN RE: Terri Thompson Mallett Applicant ORDER OF PUBLICATION CHANGE OF NAME Terri Thompson Mallett having filed a complaint for judgment changing Terri Thompson Mallett name to Terri Allyn Thompson and having applied to the court for an Order of Publication of the notice required by law in such cases; it is by the Court this 7th day of January 2011. ORDERED, that all persons concerned show cause, if any there be, on or before the 12th day of February 2011, why the prayers of said complaint should not be granted; provided that a copy of this order be published once a week for three consecutive weeks before said day in the Afro-American Newspapers. 0 that pursuant to SCR 205(b) notice be sent to the applicant's creditors by registered or certified mail and that proof of service of mailing be made in the manner provided in SCR Probate Rule 19(b). JUDGE A TRUE COPY TEST: 1/14, 1/21, 1/28
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Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2010ADM1252 Elizabeth D Bacon Decedent Winfred R Mundle Sr, Esq 901 6th Street SW 314A Washington DC 20024 Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS Russell J Bacon Jr., whose address is 11714 Brookeville Landing Court, Mitcheiville, Maryland 20721, was appointed personal representative of the estate of Elizabeth D Bacon, who died on November 24, 2010 with a will, and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and heirs whose whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment (or to the probate of decedent¬s will) shall be cedent’s will) shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., 515 5th Street, N.W., 3rd Floor Wa s h i n g t o n , D . C . 20001, on or before July 14, 2011. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned, on or before July 14, 2011, or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship. Date of Publication: January 14, 2011 Name of newspaper: Afro-American Washington Law Reporter Russell J. Bacon Jr. Personal Representative 1-301-218-2990 TRUE TEST COPY REGISTER OF WILLS 1/14, 1/21, 1/28
Superior Court of the District of Columbia Civil Division Case No. 0000130-11 IN RE: Elena Laura Zamfir Applicant ORDER OF PUBLICATION CHANGE OF NAME Elena Laura Zamfir having filed a complaint for judgment changing Elena Laura Zamfir name to Elena Laura O'Neale-Saimac and having applied to the court for an Order of Publication of the notice required by law in such cases; it is by the Court this 6th day of January 2011. ORDERED, that all persons concerned show cause, if any there be, on or before the 10th day of February 2011, why the prayers of said complaint should not be granted; provided that a copy of this order be published once a week for three consecutive weeks before said day in the Afro-American Newspapers. 0 that pursuant to SCR 205(b) notice be sent to the applicant's creditors by registered or certified mail and that proof of service of mailing be made in the manner provided in SCR Probate Rule 19(b). JUDGE A TRUE COPY TEST:
Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2011ADM0016 Margaret Lee Washington Decedent Dr. Elena M. Tilly Esq 6931 Arlington Blvd. Suite 302 Bethesda MD 20814 Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS M a r y Wa s h i n g t o n , whose address is 1241 V. Street, SE Washington, DC 20020 was appointed personal representative of the estate of Margaret Lee Washington, who died on May 11, 2010 without a will, and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and heirs whose whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., 515 5th Street, N.W., 3rd Floor Washington, D.C. 20001, on or before July 21, 2011. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned, on or before July 21, 2011, or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship. Date of Publication: January 21, 2011 Name of newspaper: Afro-American Washington Law Reporter Mary Washington Personal Representative 202-658-5549 TRUE TEST COPY REGISTER OF WILLS 1/21, 1/28, 2/4
Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2011ADM20 Carla F. Cohen Decedent Beth Shapiro Kaufman Caplin & Drysdale Chartered One Thomas Circle NW. Suite 100 Washington DC 20005 LEGAL NOTICES LEGAL NOTICES Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS David Cohen, whose address is 1322 Holly Street NW, Washington DC 20012, was appointed personal representative of the estate of Carla F. Cohen, who died on October 11, 2010 with, a will, and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and heirs whose whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment (or to the probate of decedent¬s will) shall be cedent’s will) shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., 515 5th Street, N.W., 3rd Floor Wa s h i n g t o n , D . C . 20001, on or before July 21, 2011. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned, on or before July 21, 2011, or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship. Date of Publication: January 21, 2011 Name of newspaper: Afro-American Washington Law Reporter David Cohen Personal Representative 202-723-0707 TRUE TEST COPY REGISTER OF WILLS 1/21, 1/28, 2/4
Superior Court of the District of Columbia Civil Division Case No. 0000013-11 IN RE: Willia Yvette Tillery Applicant ORDER OF PUBLICATION CHANGE OF NAME Willa Yvette Tillery having filed a complaint for judgment changing Willa Yvette Tillery name to Yvette Willa Tillery and having applied to the court for an Order of Publication of the notice required by law in such cases; it is by the Court this 3 day of January 2011. ORDERED, that all persons concerned show cause, if any there be, on or before the 7 day of February 2011, why the prayers of said complaint should not be granted; provided that a copy of this order be published once a week for three consecutive weeks before said day in the Afro-American. JUDGE A TRUE COPY TEST: 1/28, 2/4, 2/11
Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2011ADM34 Vernelle Owens Decedent Bruce E. Gardner Esq The Gardner Law Firm PC 1101 Pennsylvania Ave NW Suite 600 Washington DC 20004 Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS Linda Lewis, whose address is 1625 Lyman Place NE Washington DC 20002, was appointed personal representative of the estate of Vernelle Owens, who died on December 12, 2010 without a will, and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and heirs whose whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., 515 5th Street, N.W., 3rd Floor Washington, D.C. 20001, on or before September 28, 2011. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned, on or before September 28, 2011 or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship. Date of Publication: January 28, 2011 Name of newspaper: Afro-American Washington Law Reporter Linda Lewis Personal Representative TRUE TEST COPY REGISTER OF WILLS 1/28, 2/4, 2/11
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Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2011ADM15 Talaiferro M. Barnes Decedent Brenda L. Hopkins Esq 3724 Twelfth Street NE Washington DC 20017 Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS Patricia Barnes Brookes, whose address is 12512 Whiteholm Drive, Upper Marlboro, MD 20770 was appointed personal representative of the estate of Talaiferro M. Barnes, who died on June 20, 2010 with a will, and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and h e i r s w h o s e whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment (or to the probate of decedent¬s will) shall be cedent’s will) shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., 515 5th Street, N.W., 3rd Floor Wa s h i n g t o n , D . C . 20001, on or before July 21, 2011. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned, on or before July 21, 2011, or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship. Date of Publication: January 21, 2011 Name of newspaper: Afro-American Washington Law Reporter Patricia Barnes Brookes Personal Representative 301-390-3222 TRUE TEST COPY REGISTER OF WILLS 1/21, 1/28, 2/4
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BID NOTICE ADVERTISEMENT Adams Robinson Enterprises is seeking bid proposals and quotes from Disadvantaged Minority Business Enterprises (DBE), Minority Business Enterprises (MBE), Women Business Enterprises (WBE) and WSSC¬s Small Local Business EnterWSSC’s prises (SLBE) subcontractors and suppliers for the City of Laurel, MD Parkway Wastewater Treatment Plant Enhanced Nutrient Removal Upgrade project which bids on Wednesday February 9, 2011 at 10:00 A.M. Plans may be viewed at Adams Robinson Enterprises, 2735 Needmore Rd., Dayton, OH or plans can be downloaded. A Security Clearance is required. Go to www.cbr-wssc.com ∫Bidder Registration∫. Follow the instructions to obtain a Security Clearance Form. Fax the form to (301)206-8884. Submit written proposals until 9:00 A.M., Wednesday February 9, 2011 to Adams Robinson Enterprises, 2735 Needmore Road, Dayton, OH 45414, Phone (937)274-5318; Fax (937)274-0836 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Superior Court of the District of District of Columbia PROBATE DIVISION Washington, D.C. 20001-2131 Administration No. 2011ADM20 Carla F. Cohen Decedent Beth Shapiro Kaufman Caplin & Drysdale Chartered One Thomas Circle NW. Suite 100 Washington DC 20005 Attorney NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT, NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND NOTICE TO
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January 29, 2011 - February 4, 2011, The Afro-American
Class in Session at Macy’s
To help up-and-coming fashion enterprises and entrepreneurs, Macy’s is gearing up for “The Workshop at Macy’s,” a business development program designed to “nurture and grow” budding retail companies owned by people of color and women. According to the company, the workshop’s curriculum is aimed at retail business owners with exceptional potential who lack the business know-how to maintain growth. The workshop is a four-and-a-half-day training course at Macy’s Herald Square office in New York City and takes place in May. Seasoned Macy’s executives and other retail industry experts will lend their time as teachers. “Of the many initiatives Macy’s, Inc. has pursued on behalf of our expanding diversity strategy, supplier diversity is an area of special importance,” said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Macy’s, in a statement. “The Workshop at Macy’s is the latest example of our continued commitment to support and grow certified minority or women-owned retail vendors that will allow us to enhance our business, while also providing our customers with compelling product. As partners, it’s a true win-win for both the vendor and our company. Macy’s finds and nurtures talented new vendors who can deliver high quality, competitively priced merchandise and these vendors, in turn, see their business grow.” The Workshop allows selected attendees to meet and collaborate with other vendors and learn from industry
‘Workshop at Macy’s’ to foster growth in minority, women-owned businesses
“The Workshop at Macy’s will help us to identify and cultivate talent within the minority and women-owned small business community that will keep us at the forefront of innovation and continue to enhance our overall diversity strategy,” said Shawn Outler, Macy’s group vice-president of Multicultural Merchandising and Vendor Development. “Our support will provide these up and coming vendors with the necessary tools to succeed on a wider scale, as well as build a pipeline of exemplary vendors ready and able to provide our customers with unique merchandise that speaks to their various lifestyle needs.” To promote the inaugural program, Macy’s enlisted a few key vendors from its ranks to give a face to supplier diversity success at Macy’s. One such partner is Lisa Price, founder of Carol’s Daughter, who will be one of the program’s expert panelists. “I know first-hand the challenges small business owners face when looking to grow a successful venture and take it to the next level,” said Price in a prepared statement. “This program will be an extremely valuable tool for participants to learn from the best in the business. Hopefully what they take away from the program will help them identify and create opportunities that will result in long-lasting growth.” Macy’s is now accepting entries for consideration. The deadline for entries is Feb. 11. For requirements and more information, visit macysinc.com/workshop.
experts through one-on-one coaching. Course work includes merchandising and assortment planning, branding, sales and marketing and access to capital. A conglomeration of industry experts from Macy’s Learning and Development, Multicultural Merchandising and Vendor Development divisions; Babson College and other merchants designed the curriculum.
Jon Rolle of Friendship Public Charter School Wins Teacher of the Year Award
Calling it a “recognition of hard work and proof that public charter schools provide a great environment for teachers to grow and develop” Friendship Public Charter School is proud to announce Jon Rolle has been named the 2011 District of Columbia Teacher of the Year by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. Rolle, who teaches third grade at Friendship’s Southeast Academy, is the Courtesy Photo second Friendship teacher Jon Rolle to win the award. Last year, Stephanie Day, a teacher at Friendship’s Chamberlain campus received the honor. Friendship Public Charter School serves more than 6,500 students at six charter school campuses and four traditional public schools in D.C. and Baltimore. “Mr. Rolle won because he believes in his students and knows what they can achieve when held to high expectations. Friendship is delighted that one of its hardworking, dedicated teachers has earned this honor for the second year in a row,” said Donald Hense, chairman of Friendship Public Charter Schools, in a prepared statement. Rolle was selected by a panel of District education leaders from charter and traditional public schools chosen by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. The application process included a written application and essays, an interview, and a classroom observation. As the 2011 D.C. Teacher of the Year, Rolle will receive a $3,000 check and represent the District of Columbia in the National Teacher of the Year competition and program in Dallas, Texas. Students at Friendship Public Charter School score above the District average in reading and math and growth in student proficiency is higher than the District average. The graduation rate at Friendship’s high school is 94.76 percent - 22 percent higher than the graduation rate for D.C.’s traditional public high schools. Rolle was born in Prince George’s County, studied business at N.C. State and earned a master’s in urban education from the University of Pennsylvania. Like last year’s winner, Jon Rolle is a Teach for America alum.
The Afro-American, January 29, 2011 - January 29, 2011