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OFFICER FOUND NOT GUILTY IN CHAD HOLLEY BEATING P3

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Volume 81 | Number 29

NATIONAL

BBVA Compass Stadium

New TSU home  PAGE 8

PRESIDENT OBAMA creates same-sex marriage debate

P4 WHAT’S UP OPINION

MARTIN LAWRENCE won’t return to prime time

P6 H.S. SPORTS SKYLAR ROSSRANSON wins state gold medal

Vince Young joins Buffalo Bills

Kel Mitchell driven by faith

As a teen actor, Kel Mitchell found success in the “Kenan & Kel” TV series and the film “Good Burger.” Mitchell is all grown up and has undertaken various roles. He recently stepped behind the camera to write and direct “She Is Not My Sister,” a faith-based film. “Faith is what I live by in everything that I do,” he says.  PAGE

6

Local football legend Vince Young has signed a free agent contract with the Buffalo Bills. The star quarterback at Madison High School and the University of Texas is expected to battle for the right to back up starter Ryan Fitzpatrick. “I am looking forward to playing with the guys and helping where I am needed,” Young says.  PAGE 14

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El Franco Lee II, Franchelle Lee Stewart, Kaye and El Franco Lee

P16


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WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012 | DEFENDER

Officer in Holley case

found not guilty Defender News Services

Chad Holley

Andrew Blomberg

Andrew Blomberg, the first of four fired Houston Police Department officers to stand trial in the videotaped beating of then 15-yearold robbery suspect Chad Holley, was found not guilty by a local jury. The 2010 incident shocked and angered many members of Houston’s Black community, who accused HPD of police brutality. The incident also gained national attention, as video captured by a surveillance camera showed officers hitting and kicking the Black teenager while he lay on the ground. Defense attorneys argued that Blomberg kicked Holley’s arm because he thought the teen might have been reaching for a weapon. During the trial, Holley testified that while on the ground, he put his hands on his head to indicate surrender. “I started feeling people on my back. I felt one hard blow,” he said. “It felt like knees and I don’t know kicks ... I lay there.” He said he lost consciousness and the next thing he remembered was waking up in the back of a patrol vehicle.

newstalk

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Ministers Against Crime reject HPD clergy group By MARILYN MARSHALL Defender

Members of Houston Ministers Against Crime remain determined to make a difference in the community even though they will not join a Houston Police Department clergy organization. HMAC members recently turned in their HPD badges in response to a new group formed called the Police and Clergy Alliance (PACA). They disagree with some of PACA’s policies, especially one

which states that members “will not hold press conferences/media briefings where the purpose is to condemn City Administration or the Houston Police Department.” Rev. Robert C. Jefferson, HMAC coordinator and pastor of Cullen Missionary Baptist Church, said the organization will not be muzzled, and the Chad Holley videotaped beating is a perfect example. “The beating of Chad Holley was wrong and we must be able to say that. We are preachers and we have to stand for what is right,” he said. Jefferson added that

Rev. Robert C. Jefferson

Continued on Page 12

localbriefs EARLY VOTING for the May 29 primary continues through Friday, May 25. “There will be 37 early voting locations across Harris County where any qualified voter may vote in one of the primary elections,” said County Clerk Stan Stanart. For information visit www. harrisvotes.com or call 713-755-6965……..VOTERS WILL NOT NEED PHOTO IDS to cast their ballots in the election, and Houston State Sen. Rodney Ellis is trying to get that message across. Ellis sent a letter to Texas Secretary of State Hope Andrade asking her office to reach out to the public and voting officials and clarify the issue. The controversial voter ID law passed by the legislature remains in limbo……..THE TEXAS

LOTTERY is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a scratch-off game to commemorate the lottery’s two decades of generating revenue for the state. With more than $21.5 million in prizes, the anniversary game features nine top prizes of $250,000 and more than 100 second-tier prizes of $1,000. “Over the past 20 years, the Texas Lottery has generated $20 billion in revenue for the state and we are particularly proud of the $14 billion our retailers and players have helped us to contribute to public education since 1997,” said Texas Lottery Commission Executive Director Gary Grief…….. TEXAS SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY’S Summer Academic Enhancement Institute (SAEI) is offering

two programs for students hoping for success in college level courses. The Summer Credit Program offers developmental courses for credit. Success in these courses will reduce or eliminate the need to take developmental courses in the fall. The Summer Enhancement Program is designed to prepare the first-time freshman student for greater success on the placement test, which could also reduce or eliminate the need to take developmental courses in the fall. For acceptance in SAEI, students must have taken and submitted their placement test scores on or before Monday, May 21. For information visit http://www.em.tsu.edu/testing/ index.php or call 713-313-7386.


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DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012

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national

U.S.briefs

President Barack Obama tells Robin Roberts of ABC’s “Good Morning America” that he supports same-sex marriage.

Will gay marriage divide Black voters? By LARRY MILLER Special to the NNPA from the Philadelphia Tribune

O

n the heels of North Carolina becoming the 31st state to pass a ban on homosexual marriage, President Barack Obama announced his support of matrimony between same-sex couples. The president’s public support of same-sex marriage could either be a boon or a curse for his re-election campaign; it’s too soon to tell. But one thing is certain. The president’s public stance in favor of homosexual marriage has drawn a dividing line among voters. Will it have an affect among African-American voters? Some members of the Black clergy think it will. “I think it will to some

extent,” said Philadelphia Bishop Ernest C. Morris Sr., jurisdictional prelate for Koinonia Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ. “A large percentage of Black Christians believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman. What [Obama] may be banking on is the African-American community’s love for the first Black president but he should consider that large numbers of Black churches won’t agree with this,” Morris said. “There are too many passages in Scripture that denounce homosexuality and I can’t see how to fully justify it from the Word of God. Don’t misunderstand me; this is not about hatred of homosexuals because we are all sinners in need of a savior and God is so gracious. It is the continuous practice of this

that the Bible is against. “I also think that as the nation’s first Black president, he’s seen not just as the political leader of our country but as more than that. Many people see him as a moral and spiritual leader as well,” Morris said. Like the issue of legalized abortion, same-sex marriage is one of those hot button issues that draw a clear division between those who support it and those who oppose it. Republican presidential front runner Mitt Romney said he opposes same sex marriages. Obama’s opinion In a prepared statement, the president said he was asked a direct question and gave a direct answer regarding same-sex marriage. “I believe that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry,” Obama said. “I’ve always believed that gay and Continued on Page 12

THE FLORIDA A&M UNIVERSITY BAND is being suspended for one more school year as officials try to rectify the hazing culture that led to the death of drum major Robert Champion last November. FAMU President James Ammons said the band should stay off the field until new rules have been adopted and a new director is in place. “As president my goal is to implement the best conditions we can to create a safe environment so teaching, learning and research can take place,” Ammons said. It was recently revealed that at least 100 band members were not FAMU students when Champion died…….. THE SOUTHERN CHRISTIAN LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE is ready to rebuild after a recent court ruling ended a longstanding power struggle. The Georgia Supreme Court denied a request to hear a leadership challenge brought by ousted SCLC board members. A superior court judge ruled last fall against the breakaway faction. Interim SCLC President Rev. C.T. Vivian said the historic organization can now focus its time and energy on civil rights issues rather than legal battles. “We no longer have to worry about any further legal actions being brought. This makes it very clear we’ve won,” Vivian said…….. A PUBLIC HEARING ON THE SECRET SERVICE prostitution scandal is scheduled for May 23 by the Senate Homeland Security Committee. Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan and Acting Inspector General Charles Edwards will testify. The committee will ask whether Sullivan is satisfied with the investigation into what occurred in Cartagena, Colombia, on April 12. Secret Service and U.S. military personnel have been implicated in the incident, which took place after a night of heavy drinking before President Obama’s visit to the Summit of the Americas. The scandal, which involved some 20 prostitutes, resulted in the dismissal of nine Secret Service members.

VOLUME 81 • NUMBER • 29 WEEK OF MAY 17, 2012

Publisher Sonceria Messiah-Jiles Advertising/Client Relations Selma Dodson Tyler Print Editor Marilyn Marshall Online Editor ReShonda Billingsley

Art Director Tony Fernandez-Davila People Editor Yvette Chargois Sports Editors Max Edison Darrell K. Ardison Contributing Writer Aswad Walker

The Defender newspaper is published by the Houston Defender Inc. Company (713-663-6996.. The Defender audited By Certified Audited Circulation. (CAC). For subscription, send $60-1 year to: Defender, P.O. Box 8005, Houston TX 77288. Payment must accompany subscription request. All material covered by 2012 copyright. (No material herein may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher).

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DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012

entertainment

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Actor Kel Mitchell driven by faith

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By KAM WILLIAMS Defender

orn in Chicago in1978, Kel Mitchell began his acting career at the age of 12 with the ETA Creative Arts Foundation. A couple of years later, he received the opportunity of a lifetime when he flew to Florida to be a part of a new children’s television network that would later become Nickelodeon. Kel was an original cast member on Nickelodeon’s “All That” which enjoyed a successful run from 1994 to 1999. He and Kenan Thompson also co-starred in the spin-off series “Kenan & Kel,” as well as in the hit film “Good Burger.” Kel’s resume includes appearances on such sitcoms as “Sister Sister,” “The Steve Harvey Show” and “One on One,” and roles in movies such as “Mystery Men,”

“Honeydipper” and “The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle.” He has done a lot of voice work on children’s cartoon series, from “Clifford the Big Red Dog” to “The Ant and the Aardvark.” He recently stepped behind the camera to write and direct “She Is Not My Sister,” an upcoming, faith-based feature film about bullying and forgiveness. Here, he talks both about the movie and about providing the voice of “Dutch” on the new Disney XD animated series “Motorcity.” Kam Williams: What interested you in “Motorcity?”

Kel Mitchell: I had worked with the director and creator, Chris Prynoski, before on a Cartoon Network project. He had shown me some artwork from “Motorcity” when it was at the beginning stages, and I thought it was visually amazing. So when I heard the project got picked up at Disney XD, and he wanted me to be a part of the show, I was totally down! KW: How is acting Continued on Page 7

What’sup WILL SMITH threw his support behind President Obama and gay marriage while promoting his new “Men in Black III” film in Berlin. “If anybody can find someone to love them and to help them through this difficult thing that we call life, I support that in any shape or form,” Smith said. He also said Obama’s declaration was a “brave” move during an election year……... JAY-Z & BEYONCÉ are renting a swank five-bedroom townhome in London this summer. According to British media, their famous neighbors will include Gwyneth Paltrow and Simon Cowell. Jay-Z will tour Europe this summer and Beyoncé is launching her perfume abroad……..MARTIN LAWRENCE won’t return to prime-time TV this fall

after all. CBS decided to pass on a pilot Lawrence was developing for the network about a single father who becomes a cop after losing his construction job. The project was given the green light in February. The last few weeks have been tough for Lawrence. In April, he announced he was divorcing his wife of two years, Shamicka Gibbs. They were together for 15 years before marrying, and have two daughters……..USHER’S personal drama continues. TMZ reports that his ex-wife Tameka Foster is “freaking out” because she could be forced to move out of his Georgia mansion in less than two months if he decides to sell it. Usher and his ex are in the middle of a nasty custody dispute that is deadlocked in mediation. Under

their divorce settlement he can sell the property whenever he wants, as long as he gives her a 60-day notice. She’s asking for a permanent home for her and their kids but he said he’s paid her enough already…….. JENNIFER HUDSON’S former brother-in-law is facing a mandatory sentence of life in prison after being convicted of multiple murders. A Chicago jury found William Balfour guilty of the murders of Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew. Hudson thanked family, friends, fans, prosecutors and the police department for their help and support. “We have many people to thank but our first thank-you is to God, always…We have felt the love and support from people all over the world and we’re very grateful,” she said.

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Kel Mitchell... Continued from page 6 in a cartoon different from acting in a liveaction adventure? Kel: If all the actors are in the recording session at the same time, you can record all voices for one episode in an hour. Of course, the animation takes longer but the voice acting is done very quickly. It’s a lot of action in “Motorcity” so, for example, a lot of times we’re jumping up and down and screaming in the studio. Consequently, it sounds believable when they animate our characters driving up a ramp shooting at robots. I love seeing what the animators do with my voice acting. KW: What interested you in directing? Kel: I created and wrote “She Is Not My Sister” with the intention of directing it. This film is the first of many films that I plan to direct. KW: Tell me a little about the movie? Kel: “She Is Not My Sister” is the story of how a high school senior’s life takes a turn for the worse when her father returns home from a business trip married to the mother of her high school arch enemy. It’s a fun, teen dramedy with a great cast. KW: How did you enjoy writing and directing your first feature film? Kel: I enjoyed every minute of it. Hopefully, I will be doing it many, many more times in the future. KW: What message do you think people will take away from the movie? Kel: How to forgive your enemies which in and of itself is a very hard thing to do. Often, when you are upset and allowing your emotions to control you, forgiveness seems so out of reach. But once you let go and let God take control, you begin to realize that forgiveness is the only way to really win. True forgiveness is the only real key to

happiness in your life. Also, sometimes it’s not always an enemy you need to forgive, sometimes it’s yourself. KW: How big a role did your faith play in the production? Kel: Faith is what drove this film. Faith is what I live by in everything that I do. I strive to give glory to God in every aspect of my life,

even my films. KW: When I think of you, what immediately comes to mind are your Nickelodeon collaborations with Kenan Thompson. Are you still in touch with Kenan? Kel: No, we have not seen each other in a while. KW: What excites you? Kel: The word of

God and my wife. KW: Are you ever afraid? Kel: God does not give us the spirit of fear, so I do not chose to give in to fear because I know that the Creator designed us to win no matter what we face. When I am faced with a circumstance that in the past I would have been fearful about I turn it over imme-

diately to Christ. When I learned this principle as a Christian, I became fearless. KW: If you could have one wish instantly granted, what would that be? Kel: That everyone I meet would give their life to Christ. KW: When do you feel the most content? Kel: When I’m in

7

the arms of my wife. KW: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to follow in your footsteps? Kel: Change the way you speak about yourself and others. Words have power. Speak positively and positive things will happen to you. Speak negatively and negative things will happen to you. Choose positive words.

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Sale merchandise may not be available at all stores and is not available at RxPress Pharmacies and pharmacy-only locations. Sale prices may also be limited to your local newspaper distribution. Rain checks are not available at stores that do not carry the advertised item. Sale prices offered for the dates listed on the front page unless otherwise specified in the ad or on the coupon. Right reserved to limit all quantities on all items. Coupons must be presented at time of purchase. Regular prices quoted may vary by store. Items may not be exactly as pictured. Availability at Walgreens.com may differ. *Items advertised with Register Rewards or rebates are subject to conditions and limits established by the mfr. See coupon or rebate form for details. Call 800-WALGREENS (800-925-4733) toll free or visit Walgreens.com/findastore for the location nearest you. While supplies last. © 2012 Walgreen Co. All rights reserved.


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DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012 | defendernetwork.com

BBVA Compass Stadium

New TSU home F

Student support

By MAX EDISON Defender

or the first time in its history Texas Southern University football has a home of its very own. The new BBVA Compass Stadium, an $85 million dollar, state-of-the-art facility, is the home of TSU football and the Houston Dynamo. The stadium is located on the corner of Dowling and Texas and the TSU Tigers will begin playing there this fall. The historic event was recently marked by a gala grand opening that featured a VIP program and guided tours of the facility. Tiger faithful could even select the seat they wanted for their season tickets. The stadium represents a collaboration between the Dynamo and TSU, a collaboration that was initiated by former Dynamo president Oliver Luck. In addition to Luck, TSU President Dr. John Rudley was quick to acknowledge the help and support of key members of county and city government who happened to be TSU alum. They include County Commissioner El Franco Lee, a TSU graduate, and former Commissioner and City Controller Sylvia Garcia, a graduate of the Thurgood Marshall School of Law. “Former students of ours help make this dream come true,” Rudley said. “…They basically called me and said ‘Dr. Rudley, they are not going to build that stadium unless TSU is in it.’ “We also have two members of the Houston Sports Authority who are TSU alumni, Rev. Manson Johnson and Matthew Rodgers. So you have to understand TSU alumni were the ones who started the vision for us to be in the stadium today.” Rudley stresses the university’s involvement. “We’re not leasing the stadium; we’re part owners of the stadium,” he said. “We paid $1.5 million for our involvement in the stadium, down from the original amount proposed to us of $2.5 million. We paid cash so we are a full member of this stadium.” According to the Houston Harris County-Houston Sports Authority, minority contractors also played a role in the stadium, and MBE participation was 30 percent.

A venture this large does not come about without support from the university’s primary constituency, the students. They agreed to a student athletic fee implemented four years ago that has helped elevate the profile of sports at TSU and make the

stadium deal possible. TSU Student Government Association President Shekirah Dennis acknowledged the pride of the student body in the historic accomplishment. “This has been a long time coming, a stadium we can call our very own,” Dennis said. “Huge

The stadium at a glance

BBVA Compass Stadium is a 22,000-seat, open-air facility designed to host sporting and concert events. It is the first soccerspecific stadium in Major League Soccer located in a city’s downtown district. Spectators can experience unobstructed views from both the lower and upper seating bowls, which are supported by a single concourse. The concourse provides full access around the stadium with easy access to concession and other areas. The fan experience is enhanced by modern sound and video elements throughout the stadium. Fully integrated broadcast facilities allow viewers and listeners to feel part of the atmosphere. With its downtown location, it is part of a true Stadium District, which already features Minute Maid Park and Toyota Center, as well as the George R. Brown Convention Center, Discovery Green and the House of Blues.

TSU head football coach Darrell Asberry is proud to play in the new stadium.

cover

kudos go to President Rudley a tion, the regents and most impo for making this vision become TSU Athletic Director Dr. land, the university’s main poin project, beamed with pride at th tireless effort. “It’s a great day for Texas ty. Our fans, our alumni, our st ball players deserve a facility o McClelland said. “This stadium in the nation; clearly the best in of the best in FCS [NCAA Div “This was a project that s ago, my second day after annou to Texas Southern,” McClellan “I hadn’t even started wor Southern when Oliver Luck cal get together, let’s talk about thi partnership, with Dynamo, TSU the city. To fast forward to whe stadium being completed is ove hard to put it into words” Luck got the ball rolling, b gives credit to Lee and Garcia effort. “Oliver is a great guy, a vi appreciate all that he has done. derestimate what Sylvia Garcia did for us. If it were not for tho and a few oth in this positio “Clearly Texas Southe this dream a r very happy th us as equal pa by] Chris Can from Oliver. W build great thi Despite t football progr TSU football bond of sorts, venues aroun days are histo

The differ

“To have McClelland s renting an apa ing your own renting everyb what to do. W own you’re a terms. Now w play when we no longer hav

defendernetwork.com • Serving th


9

rpage

and the administraortantly the students a reality.” . Charles McClelnt person for the he end result of his

Southern Universitudents and our footof this magnitude,” m is one of the best n the SWAC and one vision 1AA]. started four years uncing I was coming nd continued. rking at Texas lled and said let’s is idea of a joint U, the county and ere we are today, the erwhelming, actually

but McClelland also for their committed

isionary and we . We also can’t una and El Franco Lee ose two individuals hers we wouldn’t be on. y the Dynamo needed ern in order to make reality. We were hat Oliver accepted artners, [followed netti who took over We’ve been able to ings together.” the success of the ram over the years, l has been a vaga, playing at different nd the city, but those ory.

rence

e your own is great,” said. “I compare it to artment versus havn home. When you’re ybody else tells you When you have your able to dictate the we have the ability to e want to play. We ve to wait for other

Participating in the stadium ribbon cutting are (left to right) Dr. John Rudley, County Commissioner El Franco Lee, City Councilmember James Rodriguez, Dynamo President of Business OperationsChris Canetti, Mayor Annise Parker, Harris County-Houston Sports Authority Board Chair J. Kent Friedman, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee and Congressman Al Green.

games to be finished before we can play. “We can set our schedule, set our times two, three, four years in advance. We’ll have our own locker room where we are able to create our own game-day atmosphere. “We’ll be able to wrap the stadium in all of our colors. Being able to control the environment is extremely critical to the forward progression of your football team,” McClelland said. Now that the stadium is complete, newly hired head football coach Darrell Asberry will be tasked with producing a winner on the field in order to keep fans in the stands. Asberry is fired up about the challenge. “It will not take the four years of my contract to fill this stadium,” Asberry said. “It will not take the four years of my contract to bring a championship home. I will tell you like I told Rick Comegys at Jackson State and Heishma Northern at Prairie View…the road to the SWAC championship has to come through TSU’s stadium. “This is a tremendous building and I want our student athletes to let this moment soak in,” Asberry said. “This fall, when we have 23,000 screaming alums in the stands, I want them to remember this moment. We must protect this house by any means necessary.”

e Houston area for over 80 years

Thoughts on the stadium County Commissioner El Franco Lee:

“It was a high priority for me to make sure that Texas Southern University acquired and maintained an integral part of the Dynamo deal if that stadium was going to become a reality. In negotiating the downtown stadium in the shadows of TSU, it became important to me to involve the university in that partnership. I am convinced that TSU’s involvement will afford the university an opportunity to enhance its collegiate sports program as well as its academic programs…”

Texas Southern President Dr. John Rudley:

“One of our major initiatives was to bring a state-of-the-art stadium to Texas Southern University athletics. This new stadium has helped us reach that goal. It also gives us one of the best facilities in the Southwestern Athletic Conference. It’s a huge boost to the overall athletic program.”

Houston Congressman Al Green:

“Thanks to thoughtful collaboration and a dynamic partnership that benefits not only one of our great universities, but also our great city, home-field advantage just got more comfortable, accessible and enjoyable given that TSU now has a state-of the-art facility to call home.”

Dynamo President of Business Operations Chris Canetti:

“There are many people to thank in making this come true. I thank the Dynamo fans and sponsors for their incredible support, the owners for their commitment, the City of Houston, Harris County and the Sports Authority for their vision, TSU for their partnership, and the team for its work on the field and in the community in serving as a catalyst to everything. Thank you; our organization is grateful.”

Harris County-Houston Sports Authority Chair J. Kent Friedman:

“Our world-class soccer team will finally have its own first-class facility to call home, and TSU will have a premier space to play football. This stadium is a great example of a strong publicprivate partnership that will revitalize our local economy, creating jobs and opportunity for the citizens of Harris County.”


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DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012

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health

A Defender and Kelsey-Seybold Clinic Alliance

Diabetes: Beware of this ‘silent disease’ have diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be a silent disease, and many people don’t even know they have it. Because of the high risk, it is vitally important that the African-American community be aware of diabetes risk factors, potential complications and, most of all, prevention.

By VICTOR SIMMS, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P.

D

iabetes is a serious problem within the African-American community, particularly Type 2 diabetes, but there is good news. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed in those at high risk for the disease. Risk Factors Diabetes is a chronic, progressive condition There is no single determining factor for that affects approximately 366 million people the development of diabetes. Risk factors for worldwide. In the United States alone, more than Type 2 diabetes include: 25 million Americans are living with diabetes • Obesity and Type 2 diabetes accounts for 90 percent to • Sedentary lifestyle 95 percent of all cases of diagnosed diabetes in • Age adults. African-Americans are affected more by Dr. Simms is a board-certified • Hypertension diabetes than other groups: Internal Medicine physician who • High cholesterol • About 3.7 million (14.7 percent) Africancares for patients at Kelsey• Family history Americans ages 20 or older currently have Seybold’s Pasadena Clinic. He has been nationally recognized • Prediabetes diabetes. by the National Committee for The more risk factors you have, the more • Compared to non-Hispanic whites, AfricanQuality Assurance (NCQA) for likely you may be to develop it someday. Americans are 1.8 times more likely to have excellence in diabetes care. diabetes. Serious Complications • 1-in-4 African-Americans between the ages of Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to some serious 65 and 74 has diabetes. complications, including blindness, kidney disease, medically • 25 percent of African-American women over 55 years of age

necessary amputations, heart disease, stroke and nerve damage: • African-Americans with diabetes are almost 50 percent more likely to develop diabetic retinopathy (the most common diabetic eye disease that can cause vision loss). • African-Americans with diabetes are about 3 to 6 times as likely to suffer from kidney disease with more than 4,000 new cases of end stage renal disease each year. • African-Americans with diabetes are nearly 3 times as likely to suffer from lower-limb amputations because of their disease.

How to Prevent It Healthy lifestyle choices can help you prevent Type 2 diabetes. Even if diabetes runs in your family, diet and exercise may help to prevent the disease. If you’ve already been diagnosed with diabetes, the same healthy lifestyle choices may help prevent potentially serious complications. And if you have prediabetes, lifestyle changes can slow or halt the progression to diabetes. • Eat healthy foods. Choose foods low in fat and calories. • Get physical. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate physical activity a day or spread 10-minute or longer sessions throughout the day. • Lose excess pounds. If you’re overweight, losing 5 percent to 10 percent of your body weight may reduce your risk of diabetes.

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11

Event benefits four-year-old shooting victim

C

By ASWAD WALKER Defender

ommunity of Faith Church is hosting an event celebrating the miraculous recovery of Isaiah Nicholas, the four-year-old who survived being shot in the face earlier this year. It takes place Sunday, May 20, at 4 p.m., at 1024 Pinemont Drive. The event will not only celebrate Isaiah’s recovery, but serve as a vehicle to help his family pay their unexpected medical expenses. On April 1, Candale Dekota Hall, who was involved in a Isaiah Nicholas domestic dispute, reportedly fired nine bullets into Nicholas’ grandmother’s home daycare where Isaiah and five other children were inside playing. (Hall was charged with aggravated assault and later turned himself in). One of those bullets hit Isaiah, tearing through the bridge of his nose, piercing the upper palate of his mouth, and eventually lodging in the left side of his neck. “Originally the doctors were very uncertain about what the outcome would be as far as brain damage, paralysis, speech impediment, or any nerve damage,” said Isaiah’s grandmother,

Lisa Ceasar. “They were hoping for the best but we could tell they didn’t think it would be good.” However, Ceasar and Isaiah’s mother, Rosharon Ceasar, were encouraged by his immediate reaction to the trauma. “We first got a sense [that Isaiah would recover] when he was in the ambulance because he kept repeating that he did not want to die and he was conscious all the way to the hospital. After that we knew his recovery would be profound after he was taken off life support and was breathing on his own and trying to talk,” said Ceasar, who credits the faith and prayers of family and friends, and the doctors at Memorial Hermann with her grandson’s recovery. Ceasar says Isaiah is still the same energetic, animated and funny young boy he was before the shooting. One of the top students in his Felix Cook Elementary Pre-K class, Isaiah enjoys dressing up as Superman and Spiderman when not watching his favorite shows, including the “Power Rangers.” Still, Isaiah did suffer some scars from the incident – and unpleasant memories. “He is more paranoid than he used to be; it made him a little bit more mature to situations. At first he would have nightmares about the

incident and wake up holding his head where he was shot, but those nightmares have diminished slowly,” stated Ceasar. “When we were in the hospital and the news would come on about the shooting, he would start fidgeting so we would mute the TV or change the channel. Once he was able to talk again in the hospital, we asked him if he remembered what happened to him and he told us exactly what happened. He recalls everything.” While celebrating Isaiah’s present healing, his family members have hopes that he will grow up to lead an anti-violence ministry, sharing his story nationally. “We want him to be just a happy person like he has always been and be able to see the good in bad situations,’ added Ceasar. The upcoming event at the Community of Faith, and organized by Bishop James Dixon, Pastor E.A. Deckard and others, will also help Ceasar relocate her business, which was the family’s main source of income. Since the shooting, Ceasar has lost clients who, out of fear, are unwilling to bring their children to the house for care. “The unexpected financial expenses and trying to find another location have been very challenging for my daycare business, but we know it has to be done because this is our livelihood. There is nothing but bad memories in my home now because as you walk through it all you see is bullet holes,” added Ceasar.


12 DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012 | defendernetwork.com Gay Marriage... Continued from page 4 lesbian Americans should be treated fairly and equally. I was reluctant to use the term marriage because of the very powerful traditions it evokes. And I thought civil union laws that conferred legal rights upon gay and lesbian couples were a solution. “But over the course of several years I’ve talked to friends and family about this. I’ve thought about members of my staff in long-term, committed, same-sex relationships that are raising kids together. What I’ve come to realize is that for loving, same-sex couples, the denial of marriage equality means that, in their eyes and the eyes of their children, they are still considered less than full citizens. “So I decided it was time to affirm my personal belief that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.” The president also said that he respected the beliefs of others and the right of religious institutions to act in accordance with their own doctrines. But he said that in the eyes of the law all Americans should be treated equally and no federal law should invalidate same-sex marriages in a state that enacted it. Rev. Clarence James, a Black minister based in Chicago, said he definitely believes the president’s move is going to hurt him among AfricanAmerican voters. “Many of us oppose this in every form and may decide to vote against the president because of this,” James said. “The president is coming at this as a civil rights issue but there is no correlation even though the homosexual community is trying to make it one. The Civil Rights Movement was about free-

Ministers... Continued from page 3

dom and equal rights, this is a moral issue. For the president and other elected officials it’s easier to go along with popular opinion rather than to do what’s right.” But some members of the AfricanAmerican clergy have a different point of view regarding this issue. They believe the African-American community should find ways to address same-sex relationships and that there can be reconciliation between sex and spirituality.

A different view

“If every gay person in our church just left or those who have an orientation or preference or an inclination, or a fantasy, if everyone left, we wouldn’t have a church,” said Bishop Carlton Pearson who

heads Chicago’s New Dimensions Ministries in a published report. “Homophobia is hardly unique to the African-American community. It’s a social malady that’s due largely to the influence of fear basedtheologies, particularly fundamentalist Christianity, Islam and Judaism, all of which grow out of the Abrahamic tradition. The AfricanAmerican church has traditionally used a kind of ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ approach toward homosexuality.” Dr. Janice Hollis, head of Progressive Believers Ministries in Pennsylvania, said: “I think it’s an insult for the president to intellectualize on morality as if the church doesn’t already have a mandate from God on this. “This is a political move and even though

he may not see it, he’s only a fleeting moment in history; God has always been there. I think the president is promoting a way of life that deters people away from the Word of God.” Rev. Bill Owens, a minister with the Church of God in Christ in Memphis, said there’s no doubt that the president’s endorsement of same-sex marriage is going to hurt him among Black voters. “Absolutely it will and especially among the Black churches where the conviction against same-sex marriage is so strong,” Owens said. “I think many Black Christians feel somewhat betrayed by the president on this — this is something that Black churches have always stood firmly against.”

SOW_HoustonDefenderPaths.indd 1

9/12/11 8:37 PM

The Ryan White Planning Council Invites You to Meet Houston Public Leaders and Give Public Comment on…

Part A, Part B and State Services Service Definitions for 2013 A ls o lea rn a bo ut t h e

2012 Project L.E.A.P. Class

(Learning Empowerment Advocacy Participation)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at 7:00pm This televised Public Hearing will be held at the Houston City Hall Annex - City Council Chambers 900 Bagby Street, Public Level - Free Parking in Back To register for free Childcare or Transportation, you must call by 5pm on Monday, May 21st: 713 572-3724 (TTY: 713-572-2813) Ryan White Planning Council Office of Support 2223 West Loop South, Suite 240; Houston, TX 77027 www.rwpcHouston.org

he disagreed with the not-guilty verdict in the case of Andrew Blomberg, the first officer on trial for Holley’s beating. “It is a travesty of justice,” Jefferson said. “We saw it on TV. They kicked and beat that boy and the officer was still found not guilty.” HMAC is part of Ministers Against Crime, a 300-member umbrella organization that also includes Hispanic Ministers Against Crime and the Police and Clergy Team. For years, HMAC has served as a bridge between HPD and the AfricanAmerican community. The organization is actively involved in such projects as Drug Court, in which ministers work with judges and district attorneys to establish courts that give addicts the opportunity to participate in programs that help them lead law-abiding, productive lives. “And this summer, about 10 of our churches are working to get 100 students off the streets and into jobs,” Jefferson said. HPD Police Chief Charles McClelland announced the formation of PACA last month, and was joined by ministers from throughout the Houston area. He said PACA was formed because the city’s “numerous clergy teams” made it difficult for HPD to manage all of the different groups. “We decided it would certainly be a good idea to bring all of ministerial partners under one roof, under one set of guidelines, and [determine] how they can best partner with us,” McClelland said. “It falls in line with all of our volunteer groups.” Jefferson stressed that HMAC continues to support HPD. “We will still cooperate with the police department and help them whenever possible, but we just won’t have a badge that says we can’t say when a person is wrong,” Jefferson said.

classified MENTAL HEALTH MENTAL RETARDATION AUTHORITY OF HARRIS COUNTY

Will be accepting Requests for Proposal for the following services:

FACILITY SPECIALTY SERVICE PROVIDERS: Electrical, Painting, Plumbing, Flooring, General Contractor and HVAC Specifications may be secured from MHMRA, Harris County, Purchasing Services, 1st floor, located at 7011 Southwest Freeway, Houston, Texas 77074; telephone (713) 970-7300 and/or via MHMRA website http://www.mhmraharris.org beginning Tuesday, May 22, 2012. Proposal documentation must be submitted to the Purchasing Department by 10:00 a.m., on Monday, June 18, 2012, at 7011 Southwest Freeway, Houston, Texas 77074 in a sealed envelope marked "REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL - DO NOT OPEN UNTIL MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2012” “FACILITY SPECIALTY SERVICE PROVIDERS: Electrical, Painting, Plumbing, Flooring, General Contractor and HVAC”. Any questions pertaining to this solicitation should be addressed in writing to Sharon Brauner, Buyer III, Senior Purchasing Coordinator via fax at (713) 970-7682 or E-mail questions to sharon.brauner@mhmraharris.org cc: nina.cook@mhmraharris.org. MHMRA reserves the rights to reject any and/or all proposals it deems to be in its best interests, to waive formalities and reasonable irregularities in submitted documents and is not obligated to accept the lowest proposal.


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WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012 | DEFENDER

autoreview

13

2012 Kia Soul Wagon

O

By DARRELL K. ARDISON Defender

ne of the sexiest vehicles on the road today is the Kia Soul station wagon. Can you believe it? Sexy and station wagon in the same sentence, that has to be an

oxymoron. Yet the 2012 Kia Soul combines elements that make this a reality. Let’s begin with the mid-size sedan. rectangular exterior shape that A comfortable resembles a wagon made by interior that can Toyota or Honda. Kia takes the MSRP base price - $19,600 (as tested – $22,850) accommodate as many small wagon category to a whole Engine – 2.0-liter four-cylinder as five full-sized adults new level with sexy curves, great is enhanced with the Transmission – Six-speed automatic sightlines and sporty features like usual amenities such as Fuel economy –26 miles per gallon (city), 34 mpg front fog lamps, power/tilt/slide air conditioning, power (highway) sunroof and privacy glass. windows and locks, Estimated annual fuel cost - $1,915 The powertrain consists of remote keyless entry, a 2.0-liter DOHC four-cylinder 60/40 split folding rear engine matched with a six-speed seats and cruise control. automatic transmission equipped with an active economic Other interior features include automatic-dimming system. Electric power steering and 18-inch tires with aluminum rearview mirror, Bluetooth wireless technology, rear alloy wheels produce a super smooth ride reminiscent of a

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camera display and steering wheel-mounted audio controls. The standard audio system includes an AM/ FM/CD/MP3 Infinity stereo player with SIRIUS satellite radio (free three-month subscription from the outset). The safety features include dual front advanced air bags, front seatmounted side air bags, full-length side curtain air bags, front active headrests, anti-brake brake system (ABS) with brake assist (BAS), traction control system, electronic stability control, vehicle stability management (VSM) and hill-start assist control. Optional premium equipment includes navigation with SIRIUS traffic alert, push-button start with smart key, leather seat trim, heated front seats and automatic climate control. Kia possesses one of the finest warranty packages available anywhere with a 10- year/100,000 mile limited powertrain warranty, five-year/60,000 milelimited basic warranty and five-year/60,000 mile roadside assistance. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave the 2012 Kia Soul a fourstar rating in the rollover category.


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DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012

pro-college

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sports Vince Young

joins Buffalo Bills By MAX EDISON Defender

L

ocal football legend Vince Young recently signed a free agent contract with the Buffalo Bills. The former Madison High School and University of Texas All-American reportedly signed a one-year deal worth $2 million dollars with another $1 million available in playing-time bonuses. He is expected to battle Tyler Thigpen for the right to back up starter Ryan Fitzpatrick. Young spent the 2011 season A frustrating season in Philadelphia has Young anxious to prove himself as a Bill. in Philadelphia as the backup to Michael Vick. He struggled as a As a Bill, VY will be coached by a pair of member of the underachieving Eagles throwing offensive minds acknowledged as two of the more four touchdowns and nine interceptions in six innovative in the league. Former Cowboy head games, and was sacked eight times in six games, coach Chan Gailey, the Bills head coach, and QB including three as a starter. It was clearly the worst effort of the two-time Pro-Bowler’s career. Despite the difficult season in Philly, the Bills recently had the 29-year-old former NFL Rookie of the Year in town for a workout and apparently liked what they saw. Sources say Young (6-feet-5, 235 pounds) was in outstanding shape and threw the ball very well. “We think adding Vince to our roster will create more competition for the backup quarterback position,” Bills General Manager Buddy Nix said in a statement. “He brings with him some unique physical abilities that most are aware of and that will make the competition interesting. It’s all about improving our team. “The guy’s been to two Pro Bowls, he’s 3119 as a starter in this league,” Nix continued. “We think he can do that again. If he has to play, he can give us a chance to win the game or at least this: He will make Tyler [Thigpen] better.” Ever the team guy, Young approaches the Buffalo opportunity with a positive attitude. “I am looking forward to playing with the guys and helping where I am needed,” VY said. “I have always respected the Bills organization and I am looking forward to being a part of the team.”

coach David Lee are known for developing QB’s. Gailey in particular has a reputation for adapting his offense to suit the skill set of his talent. “We’ve got two of the best quarterback coaches in the business, starting with coach Gailey and then David Lee,” Nix said. “Those guys are good teachers. They will do what’s best. Trust me; he’s a big good athlete who can do a lot of things for you. I’ve always admired his ability and the things he can do. I think our guys will get him more accurate and help him as far as not turning the ball over.” Count Vince as a fan of QB coach Lee, a factor that led to his decision to join the Bills. “It’s a good chance to learn some things from quarterback coach David Lee,” VY affirmed. “I’ve been patiently waiting. Buffalo is the best option because of the things that they’re doing, especially with the guys they have on offense. They definitely will make some things happen.” Gailey, a fan of the wildcat offensive package, gets a weapon in Young that he can utilize to keep NFL defenses off balance. In addition, in a 16-game regular season, where injuries can derail a season, it’s an added bonus to have a backup with the pedigree of Young. He’s done some great things,” Gailey said. “He’s got a great arm. When he worked out here, he threw it very well. Everybody knows his mobility. He brings you that, and he’s won football games in the NFL. That’s another positive. I’m looking forward to working with him.” Buffalo star running back Fred Jackson is excited about Young’s arrival in town. “I’m sure he can still play,” Jackson said. “He’s another playmaker for us. I’m sure they’ll find ways to get him in there to compete. It’s another good signing for us, so we’ll see what happens.” Ironically enough, Young, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, now becomes a teammate of the player who was drafted No. 1, former Texan defensive end Mario Williams. Former Madison, UT and Titans star Vince Young seeks to jumpstart his career in Buffalo.

defendernetwork.com • Serving the Houston area for over 80 years


WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012 DEFENDER

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h.s.zone

sportsbriefs

Houston hurdlers shine at 5A meet the starting blocks, I wanted to attack that first hurdle, get my leg over that AUSTIN – It has to be a hurdle, keep my technique all the daunting thought for high school way through the race and stick my girls aspiring to be a Class 5A state chest out at the finish line. championship hurdler. “Before the race, I told myself Moments after that this is a state meet Skylar Ross-Ranson and I’ve done all this won the gold medal work. I deserve whatever in the girls’ 5A I get and when it was 100-meter hurdles over, I accomplished what before a crowd of I set out to do,” Ross14,217 at Mike MyRanson said. ers Stadium, the juAfter winning the nior from Langham Cy-Fair ISD district title, Creek High School Ross-Ranson captured the had a revelation. Region III-5A 100-meter “I’ve got anoth- Skylar Ross-Ranson, Langham hurdle championship and er year to improve,” Creek concluded her season she said. “For me, with the Class 5A state it’s not even about gold medal. winning right now. “I’ve won every There were some single time this year but technical things it’s not all about winning during the race that to me,” said Ross-Ranson. could have been “It’s about improving your better. But when I time and not being cocky crossed the finish on the track. I’ve got to be line and looked up humble and give grace to at the board for my God because that’s what is Terrell Clement, Kempner time (13.74 secdoing it for me. onds), I knew that “During the indoor all my hard work season I got a chance to and training had run at the University of paid off.” Houston, Texas A&M Ross-Ranson and go to meets in Seattle came into the race and New York City,” she as the top qualifier said. “Running against (13.93) and the only those top hurdlers helped competitor in the me keep from getting disfield of eight with tracted and also gain some a qualifying time momentum.” Jennifer Madu, Plano East under 14 seconds. Following a disAll three medalists broke 14 seconds appointing 2011 track and field in the finals as Alaysha Johnson of season, Terrell Clement of Fort Bend Spring Westfield was the runner-up in Kempner came back with a vena time of 13.84 seconds and Bianca geance. Jackson of Garland (13.93) placed Clement, a relative of Class third. 5A 300-meter hurdle state record Westfield’s Johnson came holder Kerron Clement of La Porte back to claim the gold medal in the (35.47 seconds in 2003), won the 300-meter hurdles with a time of silver medal in the 300-meter hurdles 41.83 seconds. and claimed the gold medal in the “It was a good race and I’m glad 110-meter hurdles. I won,” said Ross-Ranson. “Out of “As the season went on I kept By DARRELL K. ARDISON Defender

15

looking at the times on-line and I knew I wasn’t the fastest,” he said. “When I got here to this track meet, I wasn’t going to worry about times and just compete the best I could.” Clement’s best was good enough for first place in the 110-meter hurdles in a time of 13.90 seconds. Later in the meet, Clement (37.12) placed second to Randy Bermea of Harlingen (36.87) in the 300-meter hurdles. “I was a little nervous at first but I wasn’t intimidated,” Clement said. “Soon as that gun went off, all the anxiety went away. “Last year I double-faulted at regionals in the 110-meter event and I wasn’t mentally ready yet for the 300-meter hurdles,” he said. “This year I was ready to go.” The two-time defending 5A team champion North Shore boys were back to defend their title and won the 4X200-meter relay with a time of one minute, 24.26 seconds to hold off DeSoto (1:24.62). However, DeSoto won the meet’s opening event (4X100-meter relay) in a time of 40.09 seconds to make a runner-up of North Shore (40.58). DeSoto had 58 total points to 44 for North Shore. “[DeSoto] just outnumbered us today,” said North shore coach Garrett Cross. “That was the difference. We knew we could hold our own head-to-head, but they had more numbers.” The DeSoto girls proved to be just as formidable as they totaled 50 points to outdistance Garland (46), Mansfield Timberview (41) and Plano East (40). Jennifer Madu of Plano East was the meet’s individual star as she won gold medals in the girls’ long jump, triple jump, 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash. Madu ran the anchor leg on Plano East’s 400-meter relay that appeared to win the race, but was later disqualified for a lane violation. That cost Madu a fifth gold medal and Plano East the girls’ 5A team title.

State track & field meet notes Other Houston area gold medalists at the Class 5A high school state track and field meet included Reese Watson of Spring (pole vault) and Craig Nowak of Cypress Woods (1,600) defending their titles. By clearing 17 feet, Watson fell just short of setting a 5A record (17-6). The Woodlands’ Katie Willard (800) and Channelview’s Maureen Redmond (high jump) also won their event. Larry McDuffey and Jermaine Authorlee helped North Shore avenge a loss to top-ranked DeSoto in the boys’ 400-meter relay by leading the Mustangs to a victory in the 800-meter relay. “DeSoto came in favored in both events according to the times and they put on a show in the 4X100-meter relay,” McDuffey said. “We were able to put on a show in the 4X200-meter relay so the crowd could see what North Shore can do.”

Weather, test impact playoffs Seven Lakes, the 12th-ranked high school baseball team in the U.S., was a victim of circumstance. Yet they weren’t the only victims. When rainy weather forced suspension of several Game 1 best-of-three arearound playoff series, the teams were forced to make it a winner-takes-all one-game series the next day. By University Interscholastic League rule, teams can’t play three games in one day. The state’s new end-of-course assessment test (STAAR) was scheduled for this week and limited area softball and baseball teams to complete their series last Friday and Saturday. Seven Lakes lost 6-0 to Cypress Ranch to end its season. Four other area baseball series were shortened to one game.

Program honors Thomas, Green The Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company are partners in the Hometown Hall of Famers, a national program that honors the hometown roots of the sport’s greatest players with special ceremonies and plaque dedication events in local communities. Recently, two local NFL Hall of Famers were acknowledged at their former high schools as part of the program. Thurman Thomas from Willowridge High School spent his NFL career as a Buffalo Bill and Miami Dolphin. Darrell Green from Jones High spent his entire NFL career with the Washington Redskins. “Honoring the hometowns that helped create the foundation for Hall of Famers’ pathway to the Hall will be truly special as these plaques will live forever in their hometown communities,” said George Veras, Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises president and CEO. Thomas graduated from Willowridge and attended Oklahoma State where he was an All-American. He was drafted in the second round of the 1988 draft (40th overall) by the Buffalo Bills. Thomas played in four consecutive Super Bowls as a Bill. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2007. Darrell Green graduated from Jones and attended Texas A&I. He was an All-American in both football and track. He was drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft (28th overall) in 1983. He played 20 years with the Redskins and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2008.

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16

DEFENDER | WEEK OF MAY 17 | 2012

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For Event Coverage...visit

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chag’splace

family, the Esther Friedman Blonstein scholarship by BEATING THE ODDS……Marian Wright Ann and J. Kent Friedman and family, the Larry and Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund Katherine Buck scholarship, the Pearl Friedman Cohn (CDF), was in town recently and delivered the keynote scholarship by Morton Cohn and family, and of course, address at the 13th annual “Beat the Odds” luncheon. She also spent time with each of the 2012 Beat the Odds the Children’s Defense Fund scholarship. Thanks to these scholarships and the support of award recipients prior to the luncheon, CDF, and friends, they are all on their including Samatha Beasley, Keyaira Join Yvette Chargois way to a successful and fulfilled life. Block, Kasey Lewis, Marcus Congratulations!.....MOTHER’S Livingston Jr. and Brittany Metzier. Events of the Week DAY CELEBRATION……. As everyone listened to their stories More photos on defendernetwork.com The March of Faith Ministries/ of beating the odds, there was See Events on KTRK Ch.13’s Crossroads with Melanie Lawson Sunday Morning @ 11 a.m. Empowered Women of Faith Team not a dry eye in the room. These from Pearland Christian Community students, from various backgrounds, Church hosted a Mother’s Day are truly amazing for overcoming brunch. The organization offers empowerment through tremendous adversity to demonstrate academic success life-coaching, support groups, retreats and special and leadership. Through the years, the organization has been honored and humbled by the outpouring of support events with emphasis on self-improvement, family from several families. Scholarships have been named living, health and wellness and financial strategies. The in their honor, and they include the Senator Lloyd program was titled Diva Connections & Conversations and B. A. Bentsen scholarship by Tina Bentsen and and these women consider themselves “Cheerleaders

Brandi Brown, Marian Wright Edelman, Carlton Land and Gail Revis

Faith Team Members Valenti Kyle, Shirley Payne and Vivian White

Mr. and Mrs. Maurice Stewart Jr.

Lindsay Holstead and Marcus Livingston Jr.

Chanel Yarbrough and Barbara Yarbrough

El Franco Lee II, Franchelle Stewart and Kaye and El Franco Lee

for Jesus.” Over 150 ladies attended this brunch and enjoyed a delicious breakfast, ice breaker conversations, entertainment, door prizes and much more. In the mix were Laverne Moore, Crystal Watts, Chanel Yarbrough and Barbara Yarbrough, to name a few. We salute the Empowerment Women of Faith team members Valenti Kyle, Shirley Payne, Angela Ware, Bridgett Warren, Tamara Johnson, Nikkitia Johnson, Vivian White and Niecy Walker for an outstanding event. God bless!.....HAPPILY EVER AFTER……. Franchelle Elizabeth Lee and Maurice Stewart Jr. were united in marriage during a nuptial mass ceremony at Holy Rosary Catholic Church with about 200 family and friends in attendance. Kaye and El Franco Lee and Mary and Maurice Stewart Sr. are the proud parents of the couple. An elegant reception followed the beautiful ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Houston Hotel. May your marriage be just the beginning of a lifetime of dreams come true!.....From Chag’s Place to your place, have a blessed week!

Kasey Lewis and Ann Friedman

Faith Team Members Tamara Johnson, Bridgett Warren and Anissa Walker

Mary Stewart, Maurice and Franchelle and Maurice Stewart Sr.

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May 17, 2012