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Vickie Winans

Detroit to become highest density sports city in the nation

In celebration of a gospel superstar

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Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Volume 80 – Number 12

What's the latest on Flint water crisis? Who knows? By Curt Guyette When it comes to the situation regarding the water in Flint’s public schools, Jeree Brown is in the dark. With two children attending Eisenhower Elementary School, she has no idea what’s going on regarding state testing of water in schools throughout the Flint Community Schools district. She is not alone. Parents, students, teach­ers and the community at large have virtually no access to the results of testing that’s been conducted throughout 2016. Ask the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) about the situation, and you will be directed to a state website that has information about both residential testing and the school testing that began more than a year ago when the state finally admitted that Flint’s water was contaminated with high levels of lead, a potent neurotoxin especially harmful to young children. The problem is that, while residential test results are completely up to date, with data from testing conducted as recently as November 2016, information for nearly all the district’s traditional public schools hasn’t been updated since the results from an initial round of testing conducted in October, November and December of 2015 were posted. Asked via email why the posting of school testing results lag so far behind residential testing, MDEQ spokesman Michael Shore responded: “The distinction is we provide sampling results to Flint Community Schools as we do with other institutions (child care, adult foster care and health facili-

See FLINT page A-4


Workers and supporters of the effort to earn a $15 hourly wage protested at the McDonald’s restaurant at 1500 Bristol Road Tuesday morning in Flint. The protest was part of a national demonstration in 340 cities for higher wages, union rights and civil rights.

Dozens arrested in Detroit as part of national fight for improved minimum wage Morning protests staged in Flint, Detroit draw hundreds Michigan Chronicle Reports

Three dozen low wage workers were hauled off to a Detroit jail Tuesday morning, after protestors sat down in the middle of busy thoroughfare during rush hour as part of a national effort to help call attention to the need for a $15 hourly wage, union rights and other social concerns. Those arrested were among thousands who demonstrated, went on strike and got locked up across the country Tuesday to make their most ambitious statement yet in the movement for a $15 hourly wage and union rights. Homecare, childcare, fast food, retail, Uber drivers and airport workers will continue to protest throughout the day, from Los Angeles to Michigan to Pennsylvania. “I’m willing to get arrested for what I believe in,” said LaWanda Williamson, a 22-yearold McDonald’s worker who took her place on busy Grand River Avenue on Detroit’s west side, shortly before being loaded onto a bright blue and yellow bus brought there by the Detroit Police Department. Williamson, who earns the state’s minimum wage of $8.50 an hour, donned a red and black shirt with the words ‘My future is worth my freedom’ on the front. The arrests in Detroit occurred after an hour-long protest at the McDonald’s restaurant, where protestors lined the street before taking a march around the store. Cries of ‘We want our wages supersized!’ and “I want my $15!” rang out as passersby leaned on their car horns in a show of support. Workers also protested briefly just after

Cuba’s Fidel Castro’s connection to Detroit’s Joe Louis See page B-1


6 a.m. outside of a Flint McDonald’s before police converged and broke things up. As of press time, thousands of workers and their supporters were expected to take part in another protest set for 5 p.m. Tuesday at another McDonald’s in Detroit. The strikes and protests in Michigan were part of a nationwide “day of disruption” that includes workers walking off their jobs in 340 cities from coast to coast, and as the effort for higher wages marks its four-year anniversary. A report released Tuesday by the National Employment Law Project shows the Fight for $15 has won nearly $62 billion in raises for working families since that first strike in 2012. That’s 10 times larger than

the total raise received by workers in all 50 states under Congress’s last federal minimum wage increase, approved in 2007. Carl Watkins of Detroit was prepared to go to jail Tuesday in solidarity with the person who provides his homecare, Renita Wilson, who earns $8.50 an hour. But police refused to arrest Watkins, who suffers from a host of health challenges ranging from diabetes to heart troubles. Watkins said his concern is for those like him who need “long-term care” and the need to adequately pay those who provide it. “I wanted to be here in support,” said Watkins.

Vigilant financial management creates renewed stability, allowing WCCCD to hire 23 full-time faculty New hires followed comprehensive study, strategic planning; allows district to support fuller scope of student, community services Twenty-three key full-time faculty members have been hired to the Wayne County Community College District staff across its 500 square mile service area to support the full scope of its programming, services and operations. The new hires will help to bolster Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs, business management and general education programs at the District. The 23 full-time faculty members were part of a District-wide initiative to hire 75 key personnel over the next two years as part of its 2015-2020 strategic planning

as well as our own history and growth.” said WCCCD Chancellor Curtis L. Ivery. “There was little doubt that to appropriately serve the 32 cities and townships we cover, we need to commit dollars to recruit more full-time staff in key areas such as student services and information technology, including administrative staff, support staff and more fulltime faculty.”

Dr. Curtis L. Ivery process. The boost to personnel levels will help WCCCD recover important levels of operational support for its expanded role as a key education, workforce development and economic development partner in the region. “We performed an exhaustive analysis of community colleges in Michigan and nationwide,

While the District grew its offerings to respond to emergent needs of the region during the financial challenges of the last decade, including career training and innovative workforce development programming with public and private partners, it did so with reduced staff levels to appropriately respond to the financial instability of the time. Financial vigilance and rigorous planning allowed the District to maintain its services, program-

ming and stability, and to emerge in a position to now add key supportive staff. The 23 full-time faculty members will be in the classroom for the start of the District’s Spring Semester, which begins Jan. 17, 2017. About WCCCD: WCCCD, the largest urban community college in Michigan, is a multi-campus district with six campus locations, including the Mary Ellen Stempfle University Center and the Michigan Institute for Public Safety Education (MIPSE), serving more than 70,000 credit and non-credit students annually across 32 cities and townships, and more than 500 square miles. WCCCD is committed to the continued development of new programs, workforce transformation, hosting community-based training sessions, and improving student facilities and services.

THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE news Lawmakers poised to end homeowners’ right to sue for defective sewers

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

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Michigan residents’ could effectively lose their ability to sue their municipality when defective sewers flood their basements with raw sewage following a vote by lawmakers in the next few days. Lawmakers are set to vote on Bill 5282, which would enact sweeping changes to the existing sewer backup legislation that currently allows homeowners to sue for sewage backups caused by a defective sewer system.

the bill’s grant of authority to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to approve the construction plans for a sewer system. Despite the fact that the MDEQ approved many of the actions that led to the Flint water crisis, this new authority will block lawsuits by residents once a construction plan has received MDEQ approval, even if sewer backups were caused by the government’s negligence.

Liddle & Dubin P.C., a law firm that has filed lawsuits against municipalities on behalf of thousands of sewage backup victims, lambasted the potential changes to the current legislation. “This is government protecting government at the expense of thousands of Michigan residents whose homes are flooded with sewage every year,” said Steve Liddle, one of the lawyers with the firm. “The current law was carefully crafted to find a balance between protecting governments from baseless lawsuits where negligence could not be established and protecting homeowners who experience devastating losses when their homes were flooded by a municipality’s failure to maintain or operate its sewer system.”

Liddle is urging homeowners to speak out against the Bill by contacting their house representatives in Lansing. “People should be angry about this and they need to be vocal if they want to protect their rights and their homes. “

Customer safety is our highest priority. That is why we take many precautions when delivering natural gas to over 1.2 million homes and businesses across the state. We inspect nearly 10,000 miles of pipeline each year using advanced technologies, and modernize about 100 miles of pipeline annually. We also add an ingredient that makes natural gas smell like rotten eggs, making it easily identifiable in the case of a leak. If you smell natural gas or suspect a leak, do not use electronic devices or open flames, leave the area immediately, and call DTE Energy at 800.947.5000 24 hours a day.

Liddle & Dubin, P.C. is one of the preeminent class action firms in Michigan. The firm specializes in cases involving sewage backups, environmental contamination, govern mental liability and complex consumer class actions.

Three significant changes will occur if Bill 5282 is enacted. The first change would afford municipalities blanket immunity if basement flooding occurs following a rain event that is likely to occur as often as every five years in Michigan. In contrast, permits issued by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality only allow a discharge of untreated sewage in the Great Lakes when the rain event is expected to occur every 25 years. “It’s outrageous that at least some of your local officials think that it is more acceptable to pump sewage into your home than it is to discharge to the Great Lakes,” said Liddle. Another significant change is

Yard waste collection extended into December

THE MICHIGAN DTE0508| Dropbox/Clients/DTE Energy/Creative/DTE0508/Print/R0 CHRONICLEFile Name 2016-03-29-DTE0508-Gas-Intensity-5x10.5-BW-R0.indd | Page 1 of 1 | Rev0 | 03/29 PUBLISHING MI Chronicle | 5x10.5 | No Bleed | Close 03/29/2016 COMPANY REVISIONS DUE TO AGENCY 03/29/2106 Publication No.: USPS 344-820

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The City of Detroit’s Department of Public Works will extend its yard waste collection efforts until Dec. 10, due to many leaves not falling as a result of the mild weather. Contractors will continue to remove grass clippings, leaves and small twigs placed in biodegradable paper bags or a 32-gallon container labeled “yard waste” only on a biweekly bases on your regularly scheduled day of collection.

When your goal is a new home, we have mortgage options that are:


Items should be placed at the curb at least six feet away from the courville container and should you miss your collection day during this period, you may take your yard waste to one of the facilities listed below. Please remember that yard waste placed in plastic bags will not be collected.


Locations and hours of operation for waste collection facilities are as follows:

OFFICE HOURS: Mon.-Fri. 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Southfield Yard 12255 Southfield Service Drive Monday through Saturday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Closed from noon - 1 p.m. Davison Yard 8221 W. Davison Tuesday through Saturday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Closed from noon - 1 p.m.


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Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

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Wayne State University College of Nursing awards 2016 Viola Liuzzo scholarship Wayne State University’s College of Nursing has named Mouna Bazzi the recipient of the 2016 Viola Liuzzo Scholarship. Bazzi, a senior in the college’s B.S.N. second degree program, works as a nursing assistant at Henry Ford Hospital in addition to her demanding academic schedule. Bazzi decided to pursue a career in nursing after earning a bachelor of science in biology from the University of Michigan in 2010. “I knew at an early age that I was passionate about science and research. I always liked the idea of working in the medical field and I want to be able to help people when they’re at

their most vulnerable,” said Bazzi. “I’m thankful for this scholarship and for the faculty here. WSU’s School of Nursing has an excellent reputation, and they’ve more than lived up to it. ” Bazzi is the second recipient of the Viola Liuzzo Scholarship, which was named in honor of civil rights activist and Detroit native Viola Liuzzo. In 1965, Liuzzo was shot and killed by Ku Klux Klan members near Selma, Alabama while she helped transport marchers home from civil rights protests. At the time of her death, Liuzzo was a mother of five and a student at Wayne State’s College of Nursing.

established. WSU Governor Kim Trent led the campaign to honor Liuzzo. “One of the great things about Wayne State is that we attract students who are interested in public and community service, and there’s no better role model than Viola Liuzzo,” said Trent. “I can’t think of a better tribute than to recognize a nursing student who will give back to the community.”

Mouna Bazzi In 2015, Liuzzo was awarded Wayne State’s first posthumous honorary degree and the scholarship in her name was

The scholarship is awarded annually to a first-generation undergraduate nursing student who demonstrates financial need and a commitment to helping others. In 2015, Lakeya Harris was named the first scholarship recipient.

“An important component of the College of Nursing’s mission is making a difference in local communities,” said College of Nursing Dean Laurie Lauzon Clabo. “It’s an honor for the college to award this scholarship. It allows us to keep Viola Liuzzo’s memory alive and recognize her courage and selflessness in the service of others as a continuing inspiration.” More information about the College of Nursing can be found online. To learn more about the Viola Liuzzo Scholarship or discuss giving opportunities, contact Lindsey Rossow-Rood at 313-577-6967 or lrossow@

Congressman Dan Kildee urges action on Flint before end of 114th Congress Congressman Dan Kildee (MI-05) spoke on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives recently to urge Congress to come together in a bipartisan fashion to pass aid for the city of Flint and families affected by the ongoing water crisis. “Before we are Democrats or Republicans, we are Americans. We have a tradition in this country of always coming together for those who are facing a crisis, for those who are in great need. It is incumbent now upon Congress to do the same, to come together to help the people of Flint. I look forward to Democrats and Republicans coming together to do that,” Congressman Kildee said on the House floor. A video of Congressman Kildee’s full speech can be viewed here. A transcript of his remarks, as delivered, is below:

Henry Ford Hospital study shows 3D imaging improves heart procedures

“The crisis is far from over. Flint families still do not have access to clean drinking water. They demand — and we should provide — a response from every level of government, including the federal government.” “My hometown of Flint, I’m sure you’ve heard me talk about this before, continues to suffer in this crisis. 100,000 people, citizens of that city, still cannot drink their water, exposed to high levels of lead. The crisis is far from over. “Flint families still do not have access to clean drinking water. They demand — and we should provide — a response from every level of government, including the federal government. “That’s why I am pleased and appreciate the fact that Democrats and Republicans, in the House and the Senate, have come together to make a commitment to help the people of Flint. Legislation passed in both bodies provides help for Flint. Well now we have to finish that work before we leave this session. “Before we are Democrats or Republicans, we are Americans. We have a tradition in this country of always coming together for those who are facing a crisis, for those who are in great need. It is incumbent now upon Congress to do the same, to come together to help the people of Flint. I look forward to Democrats and Republicans coming together to do that.”

A Henry Ford Hospital study found a 100 percent success rate in a particular heart procedure when 3D imaging was used instead of traditional 2D imaging, the Journal of American College of Cardiology has reported.

risk for bleeding complications. Researchers say nearly half of atrial fibrillation patients eligible for blood thinners are currently untreated due to tolerance and adherence issues.

When 3D imaging is used, the procedure also boasts a zero percent complication rate compared to a national average of 16.3 percent rate of serious complications in previous clinical trials using 2D imaging, according to the study led by led Henry Ford Hospital cardiologist Dee Dee Wang, M.D.

Approved by the FDA in 2015, the Watchman device closes off the left atrial appendage, dramatically reducing the risk of stroke and alleviating the need for blood thinners. In about an hour, doctors insert a catheter through a leg vein and into the heart, then open the Watchman device to seal off the left atrial appendage sack. Following the procedure, patients typically need to stay in the hospital for 24 hours. Most patients will be able to discontinue the use of blood thinners after 45 days.

The study was published Nov. 21 online in JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions, a publication of the American College of Cardiology Foundation. It looked at the implantation of a left atrial appendage (LAA) closure device, a procedure that lowers the risk of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation. Dr. Wang and the team at the Henry Ford Center for Structural Heart Disease also found 3D imaging decreased the length of the LAA procedure by 34 minutes, which allows for quicker patient recovery and decreases complications. “These results show just how impactful advanced 3D imaging is to medicine,” says Dr. Wang, who was recently named Medical Director of 3D Printing at the Henry Ford Innovation Institute. “The pre-planning results in fewer last-minute decisions, less contrast usage, and less catheter movement inside the heart, thereby minimizing the risk of complications. This is the ultimate in personalizing care for our patients.” Atrial fibrillation is the most common cardiac arrhythmia, currently affecting more than five million Americans. Researchers believe 20 percent of all strokes occur in patients with atrial fibrillation. Symptoms include irregular and rapid heartbeat; heart palpitations or rapid thumping inside the chest; dizziness, sweating and chest pain or pressure; shortness of breath or anxiety; tiring more easily when exercising, and fainting. Cardiologists typically diagnose atrial fibrillation with an electrocardiogram (ECG) and use various drugs including blood thinners to treat the condition. The condition – misfiring by the electrical impulses in the upper chambers of the heart – affects how the heart beats and the flow of blood through the body. Due to the irregular and chaotic rhythm, blood can pool, forming clots in a small pouch off the side of the heart, called the left atrial appendage (LAA). That raises the risk of stroke five times higher in people with atrial fibrillation, according to the American Heart Association. The most common treatment to reduce stroke risk in patients with atrial fibrillation is blood thinners. Despite the proven efficacy, long-term use of blood thinners is not well-tolerated by some patients and carries a significant

Key to the procedure is anticipating the twists and turns of the heart to reach the LAA, then choosing the correct size Watchman device to seal the opening. In the study between May 2015 and February 2016, the Henry Ford Center for Structural Heart Disease team implanted the Watchman in 53 patients. All patients underwent pre-procedural CT imaging of the LAA, followed by intraprocedural echocardiographic characterization and guidance with 2D and 3D TEE imaging. In a previous national study, cardiologists using 2D imaging to insert the Watchman used an average of two devices (1.8 devices per implantation attempt) as they tried to perfectly match the size of the device and the appendage’s opening. But when the Henry Ford cardiologists used 3D imaging in this most recent study, they were able to size the Watchman device accurately in nearly 100% of the procedures (1.245 devices per implantation attempt). They Henry Ford team also found that they were able to help more patients qualify for this procedure with 3D imaging than 2D. By traditional 2D imaging, 10 of the 53 patients (18.9%) would have been turned down inappropriately for a procedure they could have benefitted from due to operator inability to fully visualize their anatomy. “Using 3D imaging allows the doctor to ‘see’ into the heart,” explains Dr. Wang. “This is especially important when planning how to move through the left atrium, anticipating the complexity and size of a Left Atrial Appendage.” Longtime pioneering cardiologist William W. O’Neill, director of the Center for Structural Heart Disease, said the study reinforces the importance advanced work being done. “We pride ourselves on offering life-saving treatments to patients – some who have been told they have no other options,” says Dr. O’Neill. “The 3D Imaging allows us to do it safer and more efficiently. This study also shows why other centers who are not as experienced as our team should absolutely be using this technology to help patients.” For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 313-916-2417 or visit

Michigan Chronicle launches campaign to raise $100k for college scholarships The Michigan Chronicle Students Wired for Achievement and Greatness Awards — casually known as the S.W.A.G. Awards — returns for its second year with applications opening for students on Dec. 7. A scholarship program created to ensure that more Detroit students that demonstrate leadership in areas beyond academics have access to scholarships, the S.W.A.G. Awards are open to current high school seniors who live and attend school in Detroit, are planning to attend college or a trade school, have at least a 2.5 grade point average, and have demonstrated a commitment to community, service and integrity. “It is no secret that the cost of higher education, be it a trade program, community college,

or four-year institution, places the opportunity out of reach for many of our children,” says Hiram Eric Jackson, publisher of the Michigan Chronicle. “That challenge is magnified exponentially for those students who despite demonstrating undeniable leadership skills, may not be the highest academic achievers. That’s where The S.W.A.G. Awards come in. The S.W.A.G. Awards are about giving the academically average student who works hard, gives back, and shows leadership in other areas that extra push towards success.” In the inaugural year of the S.W.A.G. Awards, the Michigan Chronicle, in partnership with Talmer Bank and Trust, awarded 25 deserving students with scholarships totaling

effort and help us raise at least $100,000 for students. It will truly take the village to ensure our children are afforded the same opportunities as the great majority,” Jackson says. Any high school senior graduating in the spring/summer of 2017 who attends a Detroit public, private or charter school, lives in the city of Detroit and is planning to attend college or a trade school in the fall of 2017 will be eligible to apply. To win an award, applicants must also fulfill additional criteria to be announced. $35,000, including a top award of $10,000. For the second year of the program, the newspaper is on a mission to raise at least $100,000 in an effort to more than double the number of stu-

dents who are able to benefit. “We want to give out as many scholarships as possible so we are reaching out to the business community throughout metro Detroit to support this

Those interested in supporting the effort should contact the Michigan Chronicle at (313) 963-5522.



Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

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Governor and mayor announce pilot to expand Detroit Promise college scholarship program Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan on Monday, Nov. 28, joined with students, educators and the Detroit Regional Chamber to announce the expansion of the Detroit Promise college scholarship program to include free tuition at four-year educational institutions.

“In order for Detroit to compete and win in the 21st century global economy, the city needs world-class talent” said Sandy Baruah, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional Chamber. “We’re pleased to partner with Gov. Snyder, Mayor Duggan, education partners and the funders to fulfill the Detroit Promise, and see post-secondary degrees increase in the city of Detroit.”

The pilot program will allow any Detroit high school student who graduates with a 3.0 GPA or better, and scores over 21 on ACT or 1060 on SAT, the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree tuition-free. In the current academic year, over 700 are receiving two-year or fouryear, last-dollar scholarships — funding that covers any shortfall after other financial aid such as Pell Grants have been applied. Registration is open to seniors who live in Detroit and attend any Detroit high school. The final date for registration is Feb. 1 for universities and June 30 for community colleges. The expansion of the program has been introduced as a pilot for two cohorts of fouryear students that began this fall and will include a second cohort that starts next fall. The additional funding is coming from private funds raised by the Michigan Education Excellence Foundation (MEEF), and the Promise partners are now developing options for the further extension of the program. “The Detroit Promise is opening wide the doors of higher education opportunity to the young people of Detroit,” said Gov. Snyder. “Michigan’s

About the Promise

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and Michigan Governor Rick Snyder largest city is now also the largest city in the United States to guarantee all its young people the opportunity to earn a college degree tuition-free.” Earlier this year, Mayor Duggan announced the creation of the Detroit Promise to guarantee that in the future every Detroit high school graduate will have the opportunity for two years of tuition-free college education at five local community colleges, whether they graduate from a public, private or charter school. This commitment was made possible through the Detroit Promise Zone, an authority Mayor Duggan and Detroit City Council created last fall to dedicate a portion of tax dollars to per-

manently fund two-year scholarships. Since the program launch, this partnership between the Mayor’s Office, Detroit Regional Chamber and the MEEF has provided college or university access to over 2000 Detroit high school graduates. For Detroit Promise students attending community colleges, a new program, the Detroit Promise Path, will see intensive success coaching made available to new students. The success coaching is modeled on an approach piloted in New York community colleges which has resulted in graduation rates doubling among low-income, first-generation community college students.

“The Detroit Promise is changing lives,” said Mayor Duggan. “This program is one of the most significant ways we are removing barriers to opportunity for young Detroiters so they can realize their full potential in life without the burden of student debt.” Registration is now open for high school seniors who will be graduating in summer 2017. Detroit Promise staff are visiting Detroit high schools to explain the program, and interested students can talk to counselors or advisors to get more information. Students can also visit the Detroit Regional Chamber website for information on eligibility and to register.

The Promise Zone legislation requires a private organization to fund two years of scholarships before any taxes can be collected. In 2013, the Detroit Regional Chamber and the Michigan Education Excellence Foundation (MEEF) took on that challenge and created the Detroit Scholarship Fund. Over the past three years, this has allowed the Detroit Promise to help nearly 2,000 Detroit high school graduates attend community college, tuition-free. The MEEF and the Detroit Regional Chamber will continue to fund the scholarships for the next three years until the Detroit Promise Zone tax capture is permitted in 2018. For high school graduates who want to attend community colleges, the Detroit Promise Zone authority was created in March 2016 by Mayor Duggan to dedicate a portion of tax dollars raised by the authority to permanently fund two-year scholarships. As a result, Detroit is now the largest city in the nation to guarantee all its highschool graduates a tuition-free path to a college degree.

Wayne County, THAW working to keep heat on for vets

By Warren C. Evans Wayne County Executive

The weather is once again turning. For many of us, winter is a minor inconven­ ience. Bulky winter coats and longer commutes during snow falls can be irritating —especially as you think back on a family picnic at Hines Park on a lazy July afternoon — but these things are not real problems in the grand scheme of things. For our less fortunate residents, however, winter weather can be a matter of life and death. Every year, thousands of Michigan households are unable to pay their energy bills and risk having their heat and electricity shut off. Even when winter temperatures are above freezing, a home without heat can be a real health hazard for children and seniors. Everyone should have the right to be safe and warm in their homes in the winter. I had the opportunity to serve as honorary chair of The Heat and Warmth Fund’s 2016 Week of Warmth campaign, which included Veterans Day. THAW helps to ensure fewer families will be cold in winter. Led by former Detroit City Council President Saunteel Jenkins, THAW provides assistance to the elderly, unemployed, underemployed and disabled individuals who find themselves in an energy crisis. More than 70 percent of the households they assist have a child or senior in the home. These populations are especially vulnerable to the cold. Working with partners across metro Detroit, THAW provided over $12 million in assistance to those in need last year. I’m grateful for THAW’s efforts to help vulnerable members of our community with this essential need and was happy to support their efforts during the Week of Warmth. But there is more to do. One group that is especially in need of our assistance this winter is veterans. It’s shameful that someone who served our country would have to suffer through a winter without adequate heat. That’s why my administration is exploring a partnership with THAW to help reach more veterans to keep their heat on. Partnerships like this complement and strengthen our “No Wrong Door” approach to providing services to Wayne County residents. Wayne County’s Department of Health, Veterans, and Community Wellness (HVCW) works hard every day to connect with vets and their families to provide services like hardship financial assistance. Our efforts provide us with a unique opportunity to identify veterans in need and connect them with THAW. We can also identify other services, even those that aren’t specific to veterans, which can provide additional help. Perhaps we make contact with a veteran with a child eligible for Head Start or in need of vaccine. HVCW employees are trained to make the extra effort to identify those opportunities and connect residents with needed services without sending them through a bureaucratic maze. Of course, as November is a time in which we reflect on the service and sacrifices of our veterans, I am particularly proud of the care we provide Wayne County veterans.

Flint ties). The responsible party receives reports in advance of the results being posted to provide them time to review them and raise any questions that may arise. The FCS individual schools data will be compiled in their totality and provided to the superintendent with a review of the data. It is also worth noting that this process is taking longer because we committed to sample after filters were installed in the schools.” But the bottom line is, with few exceptions, all of the Flint Community Schools testing results available to the general public are a year old. Jeree Brown is a plaintiff in an ACLU of Michigan lawsuit that seeks to force the state and school district to provide the full extent of education services and assistance needed to help lead-damaged children reach their full potential. It is anticipated that on or before Dec. 8, the state and district will file a motion attempting to have the suit dismissed. She says the lack of information regarding the water in her kids’ school is adding even more angst to an inherently stressful situation. The residents of Flint have been suffering since a state-appointed emergency manager forced the city to begin using the highly caustic Flint River as the city’s municipal water source in April 2014. The river water was so harsh that, combined with a lack of mandatory corrosion control chemicals, it leeched lead from the aging pipes into the drinking water. Last year, Gov. Rick Snyder allowed the city to again start using water from Lake Huron, but so much damage was done to infrastructure that the water is still not considered safe unless it is filtered. Brown says the school allows her children only one bottle of water per day each, so she worries about them being adequately hydrated. “I’m extremely stressed, to the

From page A-1 point where I come home from dropping my kids off at school and start to cry, a lot,” says Brown, who works as a nursing assistant. Brown cites other problems as well. She says her 5-year-old son, Jabari, is autistic and has been bullied at school. Confusion over what’s going on with the water only makes things worse, and not just for students and their parents. Bethany Dumanois teaches first and second grade at Freeman Elementary School, which showed some of the highest lead levels in any school when the state began testing in October 2015. “I’ve received no communication about what’s going on with the water,” says Dumanois. “No updates. Nothing.” Dumanois says she’s “no fan of bottled water,” explaining that it is a distraction and interferes with trying to provide her students with an education. But she sees no end in sight to what she calls the “Band-Aid” of bottled water. The state, according to documents provided in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, has been replacing fixtures containing lead and installing water filters on fountains in schools throughout the district. The most recent test results show occasional spikes in lead levels in some locations. And, in the case of the district’s central kitchen, which supplies meals to schools throughout the district, work has not yet even begun to install filters, which had to be specially ordered. In most cases, documents show, replacing fixtures and installing filters — which has occurred at most but not yet all schools — has been effective in reducing lead levels, with many tests

showing no detectable levels of lead in the water. But documents also show that there continues to be dramatic lead levels in a few samples taken at some locations. Given all that, the district reportedly has no plans to make the switch back to city water anytime soon. That’s according to Bruce Jordan, an official with the Michigan Education Association who met with Flint Community Schools Superintendent Bilal Tawwab last week. Jordan says the district is hesitant to get out in front of other Flint agencies and officials in terms of moving away from bottled water. “The issue is that the school does not want to be the only one in Flint stating that the water is safe to drink,” says Jordan. “The superintendent stated that if the health officials of Flint, the city and various businesses were to jointly put out something, then he would consider it, but didn’t want to be the only entity in Flint telling that story.” Part of the issue is perception. Teacher Bethany Dumanois echoes the concerns of many when she says she would be reluctant to drink the water even if the state and district say it is safe. (She and others) deplore the district’s lack of transparency in terms of keeping parents, students, teachers and the community in the dark when it comes to providing up-to-date information regarding water testing in schools. Jordan says he was told that it could be at least a year and possibly longer before the district is ready to stop handing out bottled water and allow students to once again do what other children in schools across America do every day — take a sip of water from a fountain when they are thirsty.

THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE Nov. 30 - Dec 6, 2016 Page A-5 news Trump wins, but a record number of African Americans will now serve in Congress By Lauren Victoria Burke

even harping on the fact that Hillary Clinton won more votes than Trump and therefore now Trump has no real mandate.

(NNPA Newswire Contributor)

Reality star billionaire Donald Trump won the presidency in shocking fashion, but African American candidates also made history on Nov. 8.

The Democratic Party in recent years has not been anywhere as militant as the right wing, who created the so-called Tea Party movement and the “alt-right” to deal with the growing influence of African Americans and Latinos at the ballot box. Democrats in Congress are primed for a new set of younger leaders to take the place of those who are in their mid-seventies and who have failed strategically to win over voters in a country where Democrats are in the majority.

There will be a record number of African Americans in Congress during the time Trump is in the White House. That number will rise from 48 to 52. There have never been more African Americans elected to Congress in American history. Kamala Harris of California will be the second African American woman to serve in the U.S. Senate. Former Maryland Lt. Governor Anthony Brown will serve in the U.S. House of Representatives. Both Republicans in the House, Mia Love (R-Utah) and Will Hurd (R-Texas), won re-election, as did the only black Republican in the Senate, Tim Scott (R-S.C.). Lisa Blunt Rochester was elected to the U.S. House in Delaware. former Orlando police chief Val Demings will also serve in the House. Virginia State Senator Don McEachin was elected to the House in a newly configured seat in Virginia that covers Richmond. Though there will be more

California Attorney General Kamala Harris is set to become the second African-American woman to serve in the U.S. Senate. This photo was taken during a press conference at the U.S. Justice Department on Feb. 5, 2013. — Lonnie Tague/Justice Department photo African-American members serving in Congress, the dilemma they find themselves in is obvious: All but three are Democrats who will be serving in the minority in the House and Senate. Being a member of the minority party in the House is one of the most powerless positions in Congress. It’s the ma-

jority that sets the agenda, the hearing schedules, the floor schedule and when the Congress will be in recess. The Senate is different. The two African-American Democrats who will serve next year, Senator-elect Harris and Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) could have some opportunities to

influence the agenda moving forward. The Senate will be a narrower 52-48, and the rules allow for some disruption from members of the minority party.   But it won’t be easy. Currently, members of the Democratic leadership in both the House and the Senate are in a period stunned silence and are not

That the Democrats had two candidates over the age of 68 running for the presidency as Republicans fielded a candidate in his mid-forties is a sign it’s time for younger and more dynamic leadership on the left side of the aisle. One of those young leaders could come out of the Congressional Black Caucus, who is soon to elect a new caucus chair. Lauren Victoria Burke is a political analyst who speaks on politics and African-American leadership. She can be contacted at LBurke007@ and on Twitter at @ LVBurke.

NNPA president recalls Castro’s fight against apartheid By Stacy M. Brown

ed contribution to liberate humanity from imperialism will live forever,” Chavis said.

South West Africa and in other areas of southern Africa had escalated.

The death of Fidel Castro has been met with varying reactions, including condolences to the fallen Cuban leader’s family by former President Jimmy Carter and President Barack Obama.

A lifelong and dedicated civil rights activist, Chavis knew firsthand the battles of apartheid and what Castro did to assist the oppressed in South Africa. Chavis recalled the time he spent shoulder-to-shoulder with Cuban and African troops as they fought against the oppressive South African government during the 1988 “Battle of Cuito Cuanavale.”

South Africa invaded South West Africa — which is now Namibia — and the Republic of Angola.

(NNPA Newswire Contributor)

For some, like Dr. Benjamin Chavis, president and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), remembrance of Castro’s reign will always include his support of the imprisoned Nelson Mandela. Chavis vividly recalled the Cuban leader’s fearless intervention against apartheid South Africa. “Fidel Castro’s unprecedent-

In the 1980s, the frontline African nations that bordered South Africa were periodically being militarily violated with the brutal violence and repression that became routine of the apartheid regime, said Chavis who first wrote about his experience three years ago in a

“Castro urgently dispatched more than 300 thousand Cuban soldiers to Angola over several years to help stop and to eventually defeat the South Africa military on the ground in Angola in 1988,” Chavis said.

Cuban President Fidel Castro (second from left) and former Nigerian presidential adviser Onyema Ugochukwu (center) in Havana, Cuba (circa 1999). — Wikimedia Commons photo column published by the L.A. Watts Times. South African military at-

tacks directly on the African National Congress (ANC) inside South Africa and in Angola,

He also noted that, by contrast, U.S. President Ronald Reagan tacitly supported apartheid South Africa and tried unsuccessfully to have a “constructive engagement” with apartheid under the guise of preventing communism in southern Africa.



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Page A-6 • THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE • Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016


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Center for Individual and Family Counseling Commemorates 25th anniversary

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

The Center for Individual and Family Counseling is celebrating its 25-year anniversary. CIFC is a comprehensive counseling center with a core focus of fostering healthy families and individuals through quality professional care. Executive Director and proprietor Dr. Pauline J. Furman has been in private practice for 25 years strongly believes in the connection of the mind and the body. “Make your mental health a top priority and your physical health will be grateful,” says Furman. Headquartered in Southfield, CIFC offers a variety of services to better serve the community. Dr. Furman, is a Certified Imago Relationship therapist. This internationally respected form of relationship and couples therapy aids in helping her clients live their best life through formation of positive relationships and effective communication.

At the 2015 National Kidney Foundation of Michigan’s Kidney Ball, NKFM board member and former Detroit Lion Lomas Brown (left) and his wife, Wendy Brown, socialize with 2015 Kidney Ball Chairwoman Myra Moreland and Ford Motor Co. Fund President James Vella.

National Kidney Foundation of Michigan hosts annual ball at MotorCity Casino Hotel Over 800 business executives and socialites aim to raise $600,000 on Dec. 3 Dr. Pauline J. Furman Dr. Furman has treated several hundred couples in the past 25 years as a Certified Imago Relationship Therapist and just one of a dozen African American therapists located in Michigan. The formula for positive, improved, connection in relationships is imbedded in the treatment process. Self-reflection and supportive recognition of one’s partner creates an environment for healthy progress. Offering a wide array of services, Furman has been tapped to lend her expertise to various organizations around the southeastern Michigan region including the faith based community. She has provided her services to Hartford Memorial Baptist Church, Triumph Church and Twelfth Street Missionary Baptist Church, just name a few. Most recently, Dr. Furman was the keynote speaker at Tabernacle Baptist Church’s 96th anniversary celebration where she spoke on the theme of Family Matters. As a part of the evening’s festivities, Dr. Furman was honored with the Spirit of the Detroit award. In addition, to providing care for the family, CIFC specializes in servicing organizations looking to create relevant workshops, seminars and trainings for employees. With a plethora of topics to assist employees in maintaining a positive and productive work environment Dr. Furman offers a workshop, titled “Putting Your Best Foot Forward,” that fosters confidence, provides interviewing skills and techniques, workplace professionalism, sexual awareness and etiquette. CIFC offers crisis therapy to corporations, schools, financial institutions and businesses. This type of therapy focuses on minimizing the stress of an event, providing emotional support and coping strategies when a critical or traumatic incident occurs. Dr. Furman and her team of professionals provides onsite care and assistance. The Center for Individual and Family Counseling (CIFC) was established to offer families and couples mental health care and strategies to work through various issues, whether at home or work. Dr. Pauline J. Furman holds a master’s degree in counseling and a doctorate degree in Psychology. For more information about The Center for Individual and Family Counseling, visit www. To schedule an appointment, call the office at (248) 443-8494

The National Kidney Foundation of Michigan aims to reach the $6 million mark in total annual Kidney Ball funds raised over the past 12 years on Dec. 3, at MotorCity Casino Hotel. More than 250 eclectic and unique auction items and hundreds of children’s toys, books and games will be featured in the live and silent auction events, as well as dinner, a brief program and live entertainment to highlight the night. This year’s event expects to raise $600,000 for the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan’s many community programs and services to help the more than 900,000 people in Michigan with kidney disease. Known as the “most fun black tie event in Detroit,” the goal of the live and silent auctions is to raise funds for the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan’s programs and services. Since 1955, the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan has led the fight against kidney disease, enhancing the lives of many Michigan residents through patient services, prevention programs, education programs, children’s programs and research for the

more than one in nine people in Michigan with chronic kidney disease. Additionally, studies show that 70% of kidney disease is preventable. The Saturday, Dec. 3, evening event will begin with a cocktail hour at 6 p.m., dinner at 7:30 p.m. followed by the program, with dancing and entertainment in Sound Board to end the evening. The Kidney Ball will be held at MotorCity Casino Hotel where guests will experience live entertainment from the band Your Generation in Concert featuring Fifty Amp Fuse along with the exceptional MotorCity Casino Hotel cuisine prepared by Executive Chef Raymond Bertschy and his staff. The National Kidney Foundation of Michigan was ranked the number one charity in the category of diseases, disorders and disciplines in 2014 by Charity Navigator, the nation’s leading charity evaluator. This year, the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan earned its ninth consecutive 4-star rating from Charity Navigator for sound fiscal management and commitment to accountability and

transparency. The designation puts the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan in the top 1% of all charities in the United States. The 2016 Kidney Ball chair is Patrick Rugiero, executive director of Roman Village Restaurant Group. The honorary co-chairs are Duane McLean, executive vice president of Business Operations for the Detroit Tigers; and Ed J. Peper, U.S. vice president of GM Fleet & Commercial. The Kidney Ball is presented by General Motors Fleet and sponsored by Lear Corporation, Madison Heights Glass, Meijer, Hour Detroit, Adrian Steel, Detroit Auto Dealers Association, Detroit Medical Center, Greenfield Health Systems, Henry Ford Health System, First American Tile, GKN Driveline, LaFontaine Automotive, Mars Snackfood, McCann Worldgroup, Miller Coors, Morley, MotorCity Casino Hotel, Northwest Detroit Dialysis, and Print Tech Inc. Tickets for the event are $250 per guest and can be purchased via the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan’s website, or by calling the NKFM at 800-482-1455.

Cuba’s Fidel Castro’s connection to Detroit’s Joe Louis By Donald James Special to the Chronicle

Fidel Castro was a revolutionist, Marxist-Leninist and nationalist who governed the country of Cuba with an iron-clad fist, both as its prime minister (1959- 1976) and president (1976-2006). Due to health issues, Castro, in 2007, delegated presidential duties to his brother, Raul Castro. Yet, most people around the globe knew Fidel Castro was still running Cuba until his death on Nov. 25, 2016. He was 90. Detroit’s Joe Louis was perhaps the world’s greatest heavyweight boxing champion, who ruled the ring with ironclad fists. He was the reigning world champion for 142 consecutive months, and stood victorious in 25 title bouts. No other heavyweight boxer in history can make such claims. Ring magazine, boxing’s most authoritative publication, ranks Louis No. 1 on its list of the “100 Greatest Punchers of All-Time.” Louis died on April 12, 1981. He was 66. While it may appear that Castro and Louis had nothing in common, Castro, from afar, greatly admired Louis, the Brown Bomber. As an 11-year-old growing up in the Cuban providence of Santiago de Cuba, Castro reportedly was thrilled when Louis knocked out Max Schmeling at New York’s Yankee Stadium on June 22, 1938 to retain world boxing championship titles. Castro remained a Brown Bomber fan, as Louis rose to become a boxing legend and a larger-than-life international celebrity. The two men met in 1959, when Castro, according to African American historian Ralph L. Crowder, connected with Louis through a New York-based advertising firm that represented Louis in the champ’s business ventures. Louis was also an investor in the firm. The contact came about 10 months after Castro took down Fulgencio Batista’s Cuban regime in 1959. Before the takedown, Cuba was a fun destination and playground for Americans in search of gambling casinos

and other venues of entertainment. Everything changed when Castro seized power. The $60-million dollar gambling and tourism industry greatly suffered, resulting in the closure of casinos and luxurious hotels, and forcing thousands of service workers out of jobs. Seeking to boost the sagging Cuban economy, Castro, according to research conducted by Crowder, took on the role of president of the National Tourist Institute, with a mandate to resuscitate the country’s tourist industry. Somehow, an agreement between Castro and Louis was brokered, calling for the Brown Bomber to help restore tourism to Cuba. Louis assembled a coalition of approximately 80 African-American leaders and celebrities to assist. This group was known as the Joe Louis Commission.

The commission included publishers and editors of many prominent black newspapers in America, including the Chicago Defender and Pittsburgh Courier, both of which are currently owned by Detroit-based Real Times Media. Other publications connected to the commission included the Cleveland Call Post, New Orleans Louisiana Weekly and New York Amsterdam News, among others. At the financial expense of Castro, 32, and his relatively new Cuban government, The Joe Louis Commission, led by the Brown Bomber, visited Cuba the last week of December 1959. It was reported that the group received royal treatment, which included a sensational New Year’s Eve bash. The mission of the visit was for black

See CASTRO page B-2



Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Page B-2

Chef Zachary is much more than a good cook By Keith A. Owens

Café, in the Michigan Building on Bagley downtown. He also moved to Atlanta for awhile before again returning to the Motor City.

Senior Editor

Have you ever met one of those people who has always known what they wanted to be? Even before they thought they knew?

Over the years Smith has won numerous awards and received recognition from some of the most prestigious culinary societies for his accomplishments.

Chef Zachary Smith, who could probably catch a squirrel and fry it up just right, is one of those. As the old saying goes, the man can “burn.” Then again, saying that Smith can burn doesn’t quite do justice to the man’s awesome skills and training. He is, quite legitimately, one of the finest cooks in the country.

Smith remembers watching his mother cook from his place at the dining room table when he was just a youngster, and it was from that time when ideas started to percolate in his mind about how much he wanted to try his hand in the kitchen, just to see if he could do it too. “I guess at a young age I didn’t know I wanted to be a chef, but my mom and my grandmom were very good cooks, my father’s mom was a very good cook. And we grew up in the projects not very far from here, the Jeffries projects.” Smith laughed as he recalled an episode when he and his siblings were trying to cook some eggs at home and his mother came home. He had thrown them out because they had become brown, but his mother immediately asked, “Who threw out these good eggs?” Smith confessed, saying he had tossed them out because he

From his website:

“Smith is professionally trained in French, California, Italian, Mexican, German, Contemporary American, Asian, and Cajun cuisines. He has worked in world class hotels, banquet rooms, done catering, special events, and he currently owns the company Chef Zachary Gourmet Spices, a gourmet line of unique spice blends. He has over 50 years of professional cooking experience with the world’s finest foods and classic recipes in leading hotels and kitchens. thought the eggs were burnt. His mother said, “Just because these eggs are brown doesn’t mean they’re burnt,” however, “I think it’s great that you guys are cooking.”

playing. I was the oldest so I’d go in the kitchen with all of them and cook with them. … Every Sunday, every holiday the family would get together and we’d have a big feast.”

“By the time I was 9, I could cook all the things that my aunts and my grandmamas could cook. My grandmother was showing me a lot of stuff on the weekends, starting out with desserts, banana pudding and stuff. When our moms got together before Thanksgiving, or any holiday they were gonna cook, then they’d be in the kitchen cooking and all the kids would be in the kitchen

As Smith grew into adulthood and began honing his skills to perfection, he eventually moved to the West Coast where he spent nearly two decades as an in-demand chef heading kitchens at top flight hotel restaurants in San Francisco, Carmel and San Mateo, as well as in Las Vegas and Lake Tahoe. According to Smith, at the time he and another chef who worked at Disney World,

Johnny Rivers, were the only two African Americans officially ranked as executive chefs in the entire country. About 20 years ago, he returned to Detroit to work as head chef at Grosse Pointe's 123, a top shelf eatery where he gained rave reviews from customers as well as tough critics such as Molly Abraham who at the time worked for the Detroit Free Press. Sometimes he would change the menu as often as every day. Smith also developed a line of spices, still on the market, and for a short while briefly headed up his own restaurant, Chef Zachary

“In 1993, he started and currently continues as owner of Chef Zachary Gourmet Spice Company. The company manufactures, bottles and distributes nationwide a unique line of custom spice blends developed throughout his years of hands-on industry experience. His was the first line to be 100% heart healthy, salt-free, sugar-free, gluten-free and without fillers. The products were first sold in Michigan and soon sales expanded to the finest specialty stores and markets throughout the country, from New York to California, and everywhere in between.”


From page B-1

print media outlets to see Cuba, and promote tourism of the island nation to respective readers of American black-owned newspapers. The publications would emphasize that Cuba did not discriminate against black people, and was a place where Jim Crow laws did not exist. Louis and the group stayed in Cuba for two weeks, returning home to the United States in January 1960. Louis received far less than an enthusiastic return reception from

the United States government, as well as many mainstream (white) media platforms.

the former boxing champion desperate to solve pressing financial obligations.”

“The Joe Louis Commission was given official governmental recognition in Cuba,” wrote Crowder in an article titled “African Americans and Cuba's First Experiment in Tourism: The Joe Louis Commission in Post-Revolutionary Havana, 1959 -1960.” “But in the United States, the white press viewed this efforts as solely another commercial venture by

Louis became the target of numerous federal agencies, including the CIA, all of which proactively pressured him to dismantle his relationships and contracts with Castro and Cuba. This governmental pro activism to stop Louis, intensified as the 1960s raged on with racial strife in America, the evolution of the Civil Rights Movement and the black power

movement. Castro boldly spoke out on the unjust treatment of African Americans in the United States, and offered even bolder remedies, all of which did not sit well with white America. In an attempt to clarify his involvement with Castro and Cuba, Louis, who felt he was looked on as “selling out America,” would constantly say his organization “only was interested in promoting tourism,

and not any politico agenda in Cuba or in the United States.” By June 1960, Louis, according to Crowder, terminated his tourism contract with Castro and the Cuban government. “Anything we ever did in connection with this account was with the blessings of the American Embassy in Havana,” Louis told media outlets of the era. “The entire experience has depressed and confused me.”

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Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Page B-3

The Social U helps students clean up at-risk online behavior Unsurprisingly, more than 90 percent of teens report daily use of social media. However, what may come as a shock is 50 percent of college admissions officers admit to looking at prospective students’ social profiles to gain deeper insights into their character, and 92 percent of employers look at social media before making hiring decisions. On Friday, Dec. 2, at 2:30 p.m. football athletes of Central and Denby high schools will get a lesson in how social media could affect their athletic scholarship dreams and college applications.

Alexander Zonjic

Franklin-Wright Settlements to feature Alexander Zonjic & Friends International award winning musician Alexander Zonjic is the featured artist of Franklin-Wright Settlements’ annual Spirit of Giving awards gala, Saturday, Dec. 10. This year’s event will be held at the Belle Isle Casino. The Spirit of Giving awards will honor posthumously Judith D. Jackson and Dr. Gerald Smith who served as president and CEO’s of Youthville Detroit. Tickets are $135 and can be obtained by contacting Deon Mullen at 313-579-1000, Ex. 248, or All proceeds will benefit the youth enrichment programs at Franklin Wright Settlements.

Detroit Motorcycle City attracting thousands to the Motor City Detroit Motorcycle City is poised to become the urban motorcycle event of choice for thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts throughout the US, Canada and beyond. This inaugural event, being held July 6-9, 2017, is proud to showcase the rich culture, history, music, and destinations that are uniquely Detroit, and features everything motorcycle — all brands, custom, stock, choppers, street bikes and more. According to Terry Terry, founder of Detroit Motorcycle City, “as a lifelong motorcycle rider born in Detroit, it is exciting to create an urban event that will attract a new group of visitors to the Motor City and beyond. Special events, attractions, concerts and competitions will be announced soon that will highlight the fact that Detroit Motorcycle City will be one of a kind.”

Surveys by The Social U indicate that more than 50 percent of college admissions officers review a prospective student’s social media accounts in the selection process. This means that, for example, party pics and foul language long forgotten could negatively impact a student’s admittance. The Social U has developed online, proprietary software to help students identify their risky behavior before it could adversely affect their college admission, internship or entry-level employment, and the company will be offering both football teams access to the program for free to clean up their profiles

dents identify social network mistakes.

Many young people are not aware of the impact social media can have on their future goals. The Social U helps students ensure their social media profiles and related online content are optimized for college and graduate school admissions, as well as internships and employment. The feedback comes in a form students are already familiar with, a Social [Media] GPA.

Students can see how likely a decision-maker is to have access to dangerous posts and what kind of First Impression they will make so they can quickly correct problem posts. In a full report, students have one click access to every problem post and can learn why it was flagged, get adjustment recommendations and instantly edit or delete the flagged content.

“Today’s kids are practically born with a smartphone in hand. Pair this with imperfect decision-making and social media mistakes are bound to happen,” said Social U Founder Julie Fisher. “However, banning teens from social media altogether can have a negative impact on students’ academic and professional opportunities. Instead of prohibiting our kids from using these platforms, we should be teaching our kids how to use them safely and appropriately so their social interactions online enhance their lives and don’t lead to future problems.”

Students can secure their Social GPA at no charge. To access a full report — with the ability to monitor social media content, view questionable posts and learn how to improve a Social GPA — three-day, one-month and full year subscriptions are available, ranging from $9.95 to $149.95. School districts and verified counselors also are able to purchase The Social U to support student progress and growth online. Many school districts have shown interest in securing the program for their students, and some — like Alcona Community Schools in Lincoln, Michigan, and Orange City School District in Pepper Pike, Ohio, near Cleveland — have already purchased student subscriptions and are using them as part of their college prep process. In October, the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy provided its students with access to the program for free, with extra credit promised to those who improve their Social GPA scores.

Fisher founded The Social U to give students, their families and schools the tools, insights and expertise they need to manage students’ streams of social media data and prepare for the rigors of the college admissions process. Using a cutting-edge technology suite, including IBM’s Watson, The Social U grades each social network using a proprietary algorithm that scans for high-risk words, phrases and images. The Social U then provides students with a numerical calculation — their Social GPA — and a full set of tools to help stu-

The Social U Leadership The Social U was founded by Julie Fisher, a seasoned educator and sought-after keynote speaker who gives

more than 100 presentations every year to parents, students, school staff and administrators. President and CEO of nonprofit Building Better Families through Action, Fisher has been educating on the prevention of destructive behaviors in kids and teens since 2007 and is a recognized authority within parenting and education circles for helping students and their families manage 21st century issues. Ted Spencer, former executive director of undergraduate admissions at the University of Michigan and current senior advisor on admissions outreach at the University of Michigan, advises The Social U on what students and parents need to know and provides insider’s insights direct from the college admissions office. The Social U was inspired by an interaction with a young athlete Fisher met during a presentation in front of a group of talented Detroit high school athletes who were looking to make the leap to collegiate sports. As she addressed them on the importance of being smart on social media, one young man with a checkered social media footprint was not sure how he could fix the potential damage he had already done. This became a recurrent theme during all her presentations on social media and protecting digital footprints. Fisher realized she was unable to point parents, students, teachers and administrators to a trusted resource to help them find their way in the shifting social media landscape. So, Fisher created one.

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CATHY NEDD Associate Publisher KEITH A. OWENS Senior Editor SAMUEL LOGAN Publisher 1933-2011

JOHN H. SENGSTACKE Chairman-Emeritus 1912-1997 LONGWORTH M. QUINN Publisher-Emeritus 1909-1989

The might of the white right By Herb Boyd Special to the Michigan Chronicle

Whether within the governmental circles or on the alt-right or the extreme right, danger lurks, particularly for America’s black and brown citizens. As President-elect Donald Trump summons his cabal, a veritable confederacy ready to carry out his repressive campaign promises, there is a nether wing, equally menacing and eager to fulfill the misdeeds left unattended by the Trump administration. It’s foreboding enough that Trump has tapped Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama to be the next attorney general, a man who has described the Voting Rights Act as a “piece of intrusive legislation”; Steve Bannon, the former head of the reactionary Bre- Herb Boyd itbart News as the White House senior advisor; General Michael Flynn as the National Security Advisor, who has expressed no empathy for Muslims; and Rep. Mike Pompeo who was relentless in his drilling of Hillary Clinton during the Benghazi hearings, at the helm of the CIA. Moreover, there are still the nefarious surrogates such as Rudy Giuliani, Kris Kobach, and Carl Higbie orbiting and waiting to pounce. These selections have given the altright and other fringe groups on the right an additional boost of invectives, more impetus in their recruitment drives, and the cover they need to continue the cultural wars that began against the Obama administration, which had witnessed a phenomenal increase in militias and other hate groups, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Trump was hardly celebrating his victory when it was announced that the Ku Klux Klan would be marching in North Carolina. The Loyal White Knights are planning to parade on Dec. 3 in Pelham, N.C. According to a notice on the group’s website “Trump’s Race United My People.” Last Saturday in the nation’s capital, a white nationalist group called the National Policy Institute assembled for its annual conference with their leader, Richard Spencer, making it clear where they stand in relationship to Trump’s victory. “I think moving forward the alt-right as an intellectual vanguard can complete Trump,” Spencer said. “We can be the ones who are out front, who are thinking about things that he hasn’t grasped yet.” With Trump in power, Spencer and his cohorts believe they have the right man to ensure their push their nativist position and their opposition to the increasing tide of immigrants. Echoing Spencer’s sentiments was

Jared Taylor, founder of the white nationalist publication American Renaissance. “In the long,” he said, “people like Bannon and Trump will be open to the clarity of our ideas.” For his part he, despite his rhetoric, must be seen as inspirational for much of the recent hike in hate and harassment, Trump, during a recent appearance with Lesley Stahl on “60 Minutes,” asked for a cessation in hate crimes and attacks. “I am so saddened to hear that,” he told her of the incidents. “And I say, ‘Stop it.’ If it, if it helps. I will say this, and I will say it right to the cameras. ‘Stop it.’” It may be too late for his admonitions, and there are too many who believe he’s being disingenuous, that he only said that for the benefit of the cameras, while saying something completely the opposite in his selections for his cabinet. According to the FBI, hate crimes were up almost 7 percent in 2015, including 67 percent hike in crimes against Muslims. Attorney General Loretta Lynch asked that all hate crimes victims to continue to speak up and not be intimidated. “We need you to continue to report these incidents to local law enforcement as well as to the Justice Department,” she said. What little hope rests for those anticipating the worst from the Trump administration is that he will fail his right wing supporters, much in the manner of his predecessors who didn’t keep the promises they made when campaigning. Even so, he may be powerless to halt the rise of hate groups who see in him, no matter what he says, as a gateway to white supremacist thought and empowerment. For example, there’s Thomas Robb, head of the Arkansas-based Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, who endorsed Trump. “America’s white voting majority, men and women, have spoken by electing Donald J. Trump to the presidency,” he began. “They have recognized that this was a last chance election. They are sick and tired of seeing our young men and women die in foreign wars protecting other borders, while leaving our own border unsecure. They have been appalled by the leftist attack upon law and order and the hardworking law enforcement officers who put their lives at risk every day. “They are alarmed by the increasing number of Muslims invading America; with a majority who hate America and are anti-women,” Robb continued. “And they recognize that the liberal agenda, free trade, and over regulation robs them of jobs and opportunities and harms all communities; white and nonwhite alike. They are beginning to feel like a stranger in their own country. They are saying to the establishment, ‘Keep your hands off our families, [and] the Second Amendment.’” What the nation and, most alarmingly, its minorities are witnessing is the confluence of white might inside and beyond the Beltway.

First black man to cast Electoral College ballot By Ken Coleman The roots of our nation’s formal method of electing an U.S. president are firmly planted in the toxic soil of reprehensible racism and disgusting distrust of direct democracy. But on at least one occasion, however, the controversial process was a source of pride for black Michigan residents as well as others across the nation. In 1936, Harold E. Bledsoe, a prominent Detroit attorney, was the only African American to cast an electoral college vote for Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Ken Coleman ELECTORAL COLLEGE: THE HISTORY In 1787, founding fathers like Alexander Hamilton advocated through the U.S. Constitution for the Electoral College, a process of having representatives cast votes on behalf of actual voters. In Hamilton’s words, “(The) immediate election (of the president should) be made by men most capable of analyzing the qualities adapted to the station.” He went on to write, “Small number of persons, selected by their fellow-citizens from the general mass, will be most likely to possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations.” 21st century translation: Common people are stupid. Hamilton became our nation’s first treasury secretary, serving from 1789 to 1795 during George Washington’s administration. His colleague, James Madison, a slave owner and considered the “father of the Constitution,” was even more out cold. He stated that “Negroes” in the South presented a “difficulty … of a serious nature.” He proposed the infamous compromise in the Constitution whereby black slaves would be counted at three-fifths of a human being. Madison later served two terms as president. BLEDSOE: TAN”



The Pittsburgh Courier, one of the nation’s leading black newspapers, described the 1936 historic first in its Dec. 26 story subtitled “Paging Ridley.” “Believe it or not, Attorney Harold E.

Bledsoe, National Democratic chieftain, is the only Negro in the nation who actually voted for the re-election of President Roosevelt … Bledsoe, of course, was a member of the State Electoral College. The only race man so signally honored.” A Democratic Party wave had swept through the country. In terms of electoral votes, it was the most lopsided presidential contest in American history. Roosevelt carried 46 of 48 states over Kansas Governor Alfred Landon. Frank Murphy, a liberal with strong ties to organized labor, was elected Michigan governor. Michigan was allotted 19 electoral votes and the group looked like present day Livonia. Other than Bledsoe, there were 15 white men and three white women. They met in Lansing on Dec. 14 in the Senate Chamber of the state Capitol Building. THE GREAT MIGRATION In pursuit of a better way of life, blacks and southern white flocked to cities like Detroit. In fact, the city’s black population soared from about 5,700 in 1910 to 120,000 in 1930. Bledsoe, along with funeral home owner Charles C. Diggs, Sr.; Joseph Craigen also an attorney; and Joseph Coles, led the way during the early 1930s to encourage Michigan blacks to vote for Democratic Party candidates. The men formed the Michigan Federated Democratic Club in 1932 as Roosevelt’s initial run for the U.S. presidency was gaining steam like a Grand Trunk Western Railroad locomotive. In 1934, Bledsoe became the first African American to serve as a state attorney general, an appointed position. Diggs, who operated a funeral home on St. Aubin Street in the Black Bottom community, was elected to the Michigan Senate in 1936. “We were independent then…not obligated to any party and we weren’t out begging nor were we satisfied with crumbs,” Bledsoe recalled many years later in a September 28, 1963 Michigan Chronicle feature. “Those who were active in politics then had to be willing to help pay the freight for the race’s political emancipation. No other organizations were willing to underwrite our movement, which I think was one of the midwives that gave birth to the Negro’s hopes in organized labor.” Ken Coleman is an author and a former Michigan Democratic Party communications director. He writes frequently about African-American life in Detroit.

The TPP wasn’t killed by Donald Trump — our protests worked By Evan Greer, Tom Morello and Evangeline Lilly

that bombarded lawmakers with emails and phone calls. Academics picked apart leaked versions of the deal, and coordinated with advocates to launch a campaign to educate the public on its flaws.

The reports are rolling in — the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is dead. If you read the obituaries, most news outlets seem to agree that the cause of death was simple: the election of Donald Trump, who railed against the deal during his campaign. But the pundits have the story wrong.

Hard-hitting activism and public outcry slowed the TPP down, and as a result, dragged it fully into the spotlight just as the US headed into a contentious election season.

The real story is that an unprecedented, international uprising of people from across the political spectrum took on some of the most powerful institutions in the world, and won. Sure, Donald Trump — and Bernie Sanders’ — campaign focus on the TPP elevated US awareness about the pact, a wide-reaching international agreement negotiated by the Obama administration. But no single politician killed this deal. If not for the constant pressure from activists and civil society groups, the TPP would have become law long before the recent US election. But thanks to intense, creative and strategic organizing from the day the text was finalized in 2015, there was never a majority of support for the pact in Congress. That’s why it was never implemented. The TPP is a massive global deal that was negotiated in secret with hundreds of corporate advisers given special access while the public was locked out. It would have handed multinational corporations like Walmart, AT&T and Monsanto extraordinary new powers over everything from the wages we earn, to the way we use the internet, to the safety of the food we feed our children. Perhaps most shockingly, the TPP would have allowed corporations to sue governments before tribunals of three corporate lawyers, essentially creating an unaccountable, shadow legal system outside of our traditional courts to pun-

ish governments that pass laws that corporations don’t like. A simple agreement to lower tariffs and other anticompetitive barriers to trade wouldn’t have been so controversial. But big business couldn’t resist the urge to abuse the extreme secrecy surrounding the TPP negotiations to stuff the pact with a wishlist for policies they knew they could never pass through traditional means. That unchecked greed was the TPP’s demise. What emerged from the closeddoor negotiations was more than 5,000 pages of policy so clearly against the public interest that it awakened a firestorm of opposition that swept the globe, and in the end, sent the TPP to its grave. While negotiations were still under way, tens of thousands of people joined mass protests in Japan, Peru, Australia, New Zealand and other Pacific Rim nations. They pushed back on the TPP’s worst provisions, held their leaders’ feet to the fire and dragged the talks out for years. This early wave of international resistance changed the game: it bought

time for activists to organize an effective opposition in the US, which was seen as all-important in the global calculus of the Washington-led deal. If Congress did not ratify the TPP, it would die.

It wasn’t a coincidence that Donald Trump saw the TPP as a useful stump speech talking point. Widespread suffering caused by previous trade deals laid a strong foundation for skepticism, making President Obama’s devotion to the Wall Street-friendly deal, and Hillary Clinton’s previous support for it, a huge liability for the Democratic party. As more and more people learned about what the TPP really meant for them and their families, it became politically toxic, to the point that no major party candidate for president could openly support it.

In the meantime, an unlikely alliance was forming. Activists, farmers, labor unions, tech companies, environmentalists, economists, nurses, LGBTQ advocates, libertarians and librarians mounted an intense opposition to the “fast track” legislation that the White House needed to rush the final agreement through Congress. The coalition that formed grew from dozens, to hundreds, to literally thousands of organizations, many working together for the first time, ranging from Black Lives Matter to Doctors Without Borders to the Tea Party.

This was a sign that the TPP was on its deathbed, but with the threat of a last-minute push during the “lame duck” session after the election, we needed to be sure. So we targeted undecided lawmakers with protests and flew inflatable blimps outside their offices. We harnessed the power of music to draw huge crowds across the country to “Rock Against the TPP” concerts and teach-ins, taking our opposition to the TPP into the cultural mainstream. We tuned out the chorus of voices that told us that corporate power would always prevail in the end. And finally, we claimed our victory.

We marched in the streets. We rallied outside the hotels and resorts that hosted the secret negotiations. Cancer patients protesting about the TPP’s impact on healthcare access engaged in civil disobedience and were arrested. Internet freedom activists mobilized thousands of websites for online protests

Now more than ever, it’s crucial that Americans understand how the TPP was really defeated. An organized and educated public can take on concentrated wealth and power and win. With four years of new battles ahead of us, this is a story we must commit to memory, and a lesson we must take to heart.



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We Work Ar ound Your Work. Payne-Pulliam School Door Openers Payne-Pulliam School is hosting its 25th Annual Door Opener Awards event on Dec. 8. This year the school is awarding 10 Image Awards at the annual dinner. Payne-Pulliam School will recognize the outstanding works and commitment to the city of Detroit of 10 Image Award recipients. The categories and nominees are as follows: Spiritual Leader of the Year: Pastor Solomon Kinloch, Bishop Andrew Merritt, Reverend Dr. Tellis Chapman Young Up-and-Coming Entrepreneur of the Year: Pretty Brown Girls, Detroit Wick, Kuzzos Chicken & Waffles Man of the Year: Jimmy Settles, Donnell White, Craig Strong Woman of the Year: Pamela Moore, Sharon Madison, Tonya Allen, Faye Nelson Voice of Detroit: Karen Dumas, Bankole Thompson, Mike Vilanti, Terry Foster Media Outlet of the Year: BLAC magazine, Detroit Metro Times, the Michigan Chronicle Spirit of Detroit: Eric Means, Christopher Ilitch, Hiram Jackson Community Activist of the Year: Rev. Charles Williams, Brother Francis Boylan, Winfred Blackmon, Heaster Wheeler, Pastor Kenneth J. Flowers, Minister Malik Shabazz

Political Activist of the Decade: U.S. Congressman John Conyers, State Senator Burt Johnson, State Senator Coleman A. Young, Jr., City Council President Brenda Jones, Wayne County Commissioner Martha Scott

HENRY FORD WALK-IN CLINICS Fever? Flu? Or just a funny feeling

Employer of the Year: Meijer, Henry Ford Health System, ECS Partnership, Macy’s

in your stomach? Get seen now at any one of our five Walk-In

Payne-Pulliam School is asking the community to select the awardees by going to the website,, and voting for their choice. Voting ends Nov. 30.

you can stop in on your way from work or home. Plus, you’ll get the

The event will be held at The Henry Ford, 20900 Oakwood Blvd. in Dearborn, reception at 6:30, dinner at 7:30. This year’s event will feature entertainment, exploration of The Henry Ford, giveaways, the awards presentation and an afterglow celebration following dinner. 1-800-HENRYFORD

Clinics. We’re open seven days a week with extended hours, so world-class care of a Henry Ford clinician for the copay of a primary care visit. Simply walk in or go online to reserve your place in line.

Dearborn . Grosse Pointe . Northwest Detroit Novi . Sterling Heights

Payne-Pulliam School is a non-profit 501C3 serving youth, young adults, and older adults in the city of Detroit. Proceeds will be used to continue the mission to provide excellence in literacy training to hundreds of Detroiters. This year’s theme is “Literacy turns your wounds into a career.” For more information about this year’s Door Opener Event visit the website or call 313-963-4710 or 313-825-2708.









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Excludes ALL: cosmetics/fragrances, Last Act, Macy’s Backstage, Everyday Values (EDV), men’s store electronics, Barbour for Him, Breville, Dyson, Fitbit, Frye, Hanky Panky, KitchenAid Pro Line, Michael Kors Studio, Michele watches, Shun, Stuart Weitzman, Le Creuset, Locker Room By Lids, Marc Jacobs, Natori, Theory, Wacoal, Wolford, Wüsthof, Breitling, Jack Spade, Kate Spade, Samsung watches, Tag Heuer, Tempur-Pedic, The North Face, Tumi, Vitamix, Tory Burch, UGG, littleBits, 3Doodler, Movado Bold, M by Macy’s Marketplace, athletic clothing, shoes & accessories, designer jewelry/ watches, gift cards, gourmet foods, jewelry trunk shows, previous purchases, products offered by vendors who operate leased departments in any of our stores including: Burberry, Gucci, Longchamp, Louis Vuitton, maternity, New Era, Nike on Field, restaurants, special orders, services, tech watches/jewelry/accessories, wine; PLUS, ONLINE ONLY: baby gear, kids’ shoes, Allen Edmonds, Brahmin, Birkenstock, Hurley, Johnston & Murphy, Merrell, RVCA, Tommy Bahama, toys. Cannot be combined with any savings pass/coupon, extra discount or credit offer, except opening a new Macy’s account. Extra savings % applied to reduced prices. Only one promo code may be used per transaction. Additional exclusions apply online, see Friends & Family discount code valid online Dec. 1-Dec. 8, 2016.

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11/23/16 2:51 PM

Page B-6 • news


• Nov. 30 MICHIGAN - Dec. 6, 2016 THE CHRONICLE

Nominate A

Young Professional Today!


Now Accepting Nominations for the Best and the Brightest

Each year, the Michigan Chronicle recognizes 40 of Southeastern Michigan’s best and brightest young professionals under the age of 40. Those chosen have exhibited outstanding achievement, great vision, and strong leadership in their respected professions. Submit your nomination today submission deadline: 12.7.16 #MC40UNDER40



Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Powered by Real Times Media

Detroit to become highest density sports city in the nation With last week’s announcement that the Detroit Pistons would move back home for the 2017 season, economists continue to stringently study the economic implications for the city, while business leaders and sports fans salivate over the socioeconomic impact on Detroit. The Pistons will move to downtown Detroit and begin playing at the new Little Caesars Arena starting next season, in The District Detroit. With the Pistons and Red Wings playing under one roof just blocks from the Tigers’ Comerica Park, and Ford Field, home to the Lions, Detroit will be the only North American city to have each of the four major professional sports leagues housed within four blocks in its urban core. The sports conclave is situated in The District. The District Detroit is one of the largest sports and entertainment developments in the country. Located in the heart of Detroit, this 50-block, mixed-use development led by the Ilitch organization unites six worldclass theaters, five neighborhoods and three professional sports venues in one vibrant, walkable destination for people who want to live, work and play in an exciting urban environment. Home to the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Pistons and Detroit Lions, The District Detroit represents the greatest density of professional sports teams in one downtown core in the country. Learn more at

sibility as owner is to make sure we are not only successful on the court, but off it as well. These initiatives will help us do that.” Under the plan, the Pistons organization agrees to: 1. Invest $2,500,000 over six years in the construction, renovation and refurbishment of more than 60 basketball courts in parks throughout the city of Detroit in partnership with the City of Detroit’s Recreation department. 2. Employment of at least 51 percent Detroit residents on the construction of the Practice Facility. 3. Awarding of at least 30 percent of the value of all construction contracts related to the Practice Facility to Detroit-based companies. 4. Use commercially reasonable efforts to maximize post-construc-

tion employment opportunities with PS&E for City Residents. 5. Support workforce development initiatives for City Residents by donating $100,000 to Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation. 6. Partner with the Mayor’s Office to provide mentorship opportunities for young city residents. 7. Participate in the Grow Detroit’s Young Talent summer jobs program. 8. Host free youth basketball camps, clinics and other events for city residents to promote youth basketball and youth enrichment programs in the city. 9. Provide 20,000 free tickets per regular season to Detroit youth and residents to attend NBA basketball games, in support of and in connection with community educational programs and initiatives.

10. Appoint and maintain a liaison to meet, communicate, and engage regularly with the existing Little Caesars Arena Neighborhood Advisory Committee or, with respect to the Practice Facility, if necessary any other committee created by the city for purposes of engaging local residents, consistent with the City of Detroit’s community benefits ordinance. Support for the neighborhood initiative and jobs program will build on the significant philanthropic investments Gores, Palace Sports & Entertainment and the Pistons Foundation have already made in Detroit through partnerships with organizations like GROW Detroit’s Young Talent, the Detroit Police Athletic League, the S.A.Y. Detroit Play Center at Lipke Park, City Year Detroit, Dave Bing’s BINGO Mentoring Program, the Jalen


The move includes construction of a new state-of-the-art Pistons practice facility and corporate headquarters that will bring substantial new investment and economic activity to the city, and a comprehensive community benefits plan that will bring millions of dollars more into Detroit neighborhoods. “I've always believed that a sports franchise is a community asset with the power to unite and inspire people,” said Detroit Pistons owner Tom Gores. “There’s a big responsibility that goes with that, but there’s also a big payoff. Not just for the city of Detroit, but for the whole region. Detroit is rising, reinventing itself. The Pistons are doing the same. We’re in this together, and we couldn’t be more excited about that.” Community Benefits for Detroit The agreement with the city also includes a 10-point community benefits plan that will create jobs and bring millions of dollars of investment into Detroit neighborhoods. “I’ve always said that the Pistons are a community asset,” Gores said. “My respon-

Bank of America Charitable Foundation awards nearly $725,000 to nonprofits tackling poverty The Bank of America Charitable Foundation has distributed nearly $725,000 in community giving to 18 nonprofits focused on ensuring individuals and families in metropolitan Detroit have access to basic needs and services. Six teams of Bank of America executives made visits to the organizations and delivered the grants during Bank of America’s Detroit Day of Giving, Nov. 16. These grants are a part of the bank’s broader philanthropic investment to improve housing, hunger and jobs in communities across the nation. Grants were also delivered to other organizations in Michigan, which brings today’s total to nearly $1 million in community giving. Many metro Detroit families and individuals still struggle to obtain basic necessities and face difficult financial decisions, such

as choosing between putting food on the table and paying for health care, or simply providing a safe home for their children. These recognized nonprofits play a critical role in providing essential human services, including emergency shelter and access to food and benefits, to reach individuals at their immediate point of need and connect them to the programs and resources that will set them on a path to economic stability. “Bank of America is proud to support organizations that on a daily basis provide food, shelter and a safe haven for so many people in need,” said Matt Elliott, Michigan market president, Bank of America. “Our commitment to these organizations can help families and individuals find their path to financial indepen-




Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

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2017 Women of Excellence nominations are now open The Michigan Chronicle is now accepting nominations for the 2017 Women of Excellence Awards. For the past 10 years, the Michigan Chronicle has recognized local African-American women who continue to break the mold and affect change in their profession and community. The Michigan Chronicle hosts the program to highlight the powerful impact that women have on empowering southeastern Michigan. These women are visionaries in their given fields and inspire those around them to go beyond the norm and strive for excellence. They are champions of equality and diversity, the backbone of our religious and educational organizations, and driving forces in politics and community service. “We’re especially excited because this is our 10th anniversary. The Women of Excellence Awards have chronicled the many different ways in which women lend their talents, hearts and hands to improve life for all of us,” said Hiram E. Jackson, publisher of the Michigan Chronicle. “If you know a woman who has made an extraordinary difference in your community, I encourage you to submit her name for consideration.”

Jackson also encourages civic, businesses and nonprofits to submit names for consideration. “The Women of Excellence Award is a wonderful way to recognize an outstanding employee or community leader,” said Jackson. These women will join the exclusive society of 450 professionals who have previously received this distinction. The criteria for women to be nominated is proven success within their profession or industry, positive role models whose contributions encourage others and active in community service or organizational involvement. Event details for the 10th annual Women of Excellence induction ceremony and reception will be announced at a later date. For more information about submitting a Women of Excellence nomination, visit 2017-women-of-excellence-call-for-nominations-2/. Questions about the nomination process can be emailed to Jasmen Jackson, The submission deadline for nominations is Friday, Jan. 27, 2017. #WOE17

2017 DRIVEN automotive project returns for 7th year Real Times Media is excited to announce the return of the award winning “DRIVEN Experience,” presented by Real Times Media for its seventh year. Held during press week of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), DRIVEN celebrates diversity within the automotive industry and recognizes men and women of color who are making significant contributions and achieving high levels of professional success in their respective automotive related fields. Last year, nearly a thousand industry professionals took part in the DRIVEN experience. This year, the experience will be bigger and better. This year’s industry specific event will be held on Jan. 11, 2017. “We are very pleased to bring the DRIVEN Experience back for the 7th year,” said Hiram E. Jackson, chief executive officer of Real Times Media. “We look forward to sharing the colorful and inspirational stories of success from the

industry’s top ranking automotive executives. DRIVEN is a must attend event for any industry professional looking to network and stay connected to happenings in the industry.” For the past six years, the DRIVEN Experience has highlighted the accomplishments of minority vendors, suppliers, dealers, and executives who are the driving force behind automotive industry. DRIVEN 2017 promises to be an evening of celebration and distinction showcasing trailblazers and emerging leaders. In years past, we have welcomed world-class talent such as Cedric the Entertainer, Anthony Anderson, MC Lyte, and Jermaine Dupri and this year will be no different. And as always, the DRIVEN Experience will be commemorated with a high-quality stylized publication highlighting the extraordinary contributions in the automotive industry by the multicultural community. This is more than just a book. It is a resource that can be used to inspire future generations of automotive industry influencers.

Dr. Roberta Hughes Wright: First at First Independence Bank By Alisha Dixon Founder, wife, mother, author, attorney and so much more, Dr. Roberta Hughes Wright is the true example of excellence. Dr. Wright is one of the original founders and shareholders First Independence Bank in Detroit. The bank, Wright said, was created out of necessity as a result of the racial climate of that time and how it affected the African American community in every way conceivable. “The mood just after the ’67 riots was volatile. It was difficult for us in many ways. We all just wanted to be able to thrive. Open businesses, buy homes and take care of our families,” Dr. Wright said. “We didn’t know how to start a bank, but we knew it was what we had to do.” Founded in 1970, First Independence Bank is a Detroit-based black-owned bank and one of 28 black-owned banks in the United States. Professionally, Dr. Hughes Wright worked as an attorney at her own law firm and practiced law for decades. Dr. Wright’s passion for the African American community inspired her to research and publish several books including “Reflections, My Life”, an autobiography. In Reflections, Wright takes readers on a journey from having a radiologist father child to being the wife of a doctor

and activist. Dr. Wright is the wife of the late Dr. Charles H. Wright, renowned obstetrician and gynecologist and founder of Detroit's first African American history museum, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. In 1965, Wright opened the International Afro-American Museum in the Detroit row house where he lived and worked. He worked tirelessly to keep the museum open and invested his own money and research in order for the museum to be both a cultural and educational resource for the community. “I'd bring healthy babies into the world and I'd see them later and they'd be psychologically scarred," Wright said in 1997. "I saw we had to do something about society and the museum was an effort to do that. In honor of the great legacy of Dr. Charles H. Wright, the museum was renamed to the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in 1998. The museum is home to the largest collection of African American artifacts in the world. “The present museum houses over 20,000 artifacts and archival materials,” Dr. Hughes Wright said. In addition to carrying on her husbands’ legacy, Dr. Hughes Wright’s tireless work has paved the way for generations to come.

Apple’s diversity numbers remain stagnant By Brandee Sanders

Sports City Rose Youth Leadership Academy and Forgotten Harvest. Little Caesars Arena Construction of Little Caesars Arena is on track for a September 2017 opening and the centralized location will make Pistons games more accessible to more fans in more parts of Southeast Michigan. Christopher Ilitch described the announcement as a watershed moment for the city, region and state. “Tom Gores and the Pistons will contribute tremendously toward the incredible, positive momentum under way in Detroit, making our city stronger, which

Day of Giving dence and a safe, more secure future.” Organizations receiving grants include: Humble Design, Common Ground, Chaldean American Ladies of Charity, Macomb County Warming Center, South Oakland Shelter, United Way for Southeastern Michigan, Detroit Historical Museum, CATCH, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, Central Detroit Christian Community Development Corporation, Civilla, Forgotten Harvest, Ruth Ellis Center, Gleaners Community Food Bank, Salvation Army of Southeast Michigan, Starfish Family Services, Alternatives for Girls and Catholic Charities – All Saints Soup Kitchen. The Bank of America also awarded $400,000 in grants to its Neighborhood Builders partners, who will use the funding to increase their impact in the community through program expansion or operations.

As tech companies in Silicon Valley strive to make their workforces more diverse, many of them have remained stagnant when it comes to progression. One From page C-1 of those companies is Apple. Apple’s workforce is still predomibenefits residents, businesses and visinately White and male, reports Recode. tors not only in the city, but also across our region and state,” he said. “This is a Apple has made statements about adbold move that will have a positive effect vocating for diversity in the tech industhroughout our entire community.” try. “The most diverse group will proFrom an economic standpoint, the duce the best product, I firmly believe move by the Pistons will provide sub- that,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook. “If you stantial benefits to the local economy, believe as we believe that diversity leads which is already getting a shot in the to better products, and we’re all about arm from The District Detroit, a $1.2 making products that enrich people’s billion sports and entertainment devel- lives, then you obviously put a ton of energy behind diversity the same way opment. you would put a ton of energy behind Dr. Mark Rosentraub, is the co-di- anything else that is truly important.” rector of the Michigan Center for Sport But the newly released figures prove Management and the lead researcher otherwise. that lead the University of Michigan study. The data, which was released by the company, shows that out of 107 high-level executives, only 20 are women. When it comes to racial diversity, the numbers are worse. There are only five executives From page C-1 who identify as Black, Latino or Native American and 14 executives who are The 2016 Neighborhood Builders Awardees are Build Institute and Midnight Golf Program. Each organization received $200,000. Build Institute helps individuals turn business into reality by providing tools, resources and a support network in Detroit. The organization has graduated nearly 1,000 aspiring and experienced entrepreneurs, many of whom have started businesses in the city. Midnight Golf Program was designed with a clear focus on the important transition from high school to college, particularly as it pertains to first-generation college students from low- to moderate-income families. To date, Midnight Golf Program has served more than 1,700 participants. Bank of America has donated in excess of $3 million in Michigan this year through grants, sponsorships and employee investments.

Asian compared to 88 White executives. Over 65 percent of mid-level managers are White compared to only 11 percent who are from culturally diverse backgrounds. Apple is claiming that the figures can’t be used to illustrate its progress when it comes to diversity. The company says that the EEOC data isn’t reflective of how it assembles its workforce. Despite the stagnant numbers, Apple saw a rise in the number of minorities at the company, the report says. There were 27 percent of minorities and 37 percent of women who landed jobs with the company. Although the numbers of women and people of color are low within the company, Apple still remains one of the leading tech businesses when it comes to employing individuals from those groups. During an interview in 2015, Apples HR chief Denise Young Smith shared that the diversity issue would take time to change, reports CNET. She said the “diversity challenge … didn’t happen overnight so it’s not going to be changed overnight.” She also added, “The longterm aspect of it is what I hope people start to really internalize and understand.”


Section C-3

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Title Town: Cass, King win state football crowns as Detroit PSL makes history Three games demonstrate the spirit of our student-athletes, coaches and fans

By Scott Talley Special to the Michigan Chronicle

Far cheaper than Black Friday shopping and much more rewarding, the Michigan High School Athletic Association football championships offered pure enjoyment for all at Detroit’s Ford Field during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. And at the conclusion of the weekend, history had been made as the Detroit Public School League had two state championship teams in the same season for the first time. The fun for Detroit fans began Friday, Nov. 25, when the Martin Luther King Crusaders successfully defended their state Division 2 championship by defeating Walled Lake Western, 18-0. The victory was a perfect ending to a special King season, which honored the legacy of the Crusaders’ late coach Dale Harvel. Afterwards, emotions flowed from those that love the “Crusader Nation,” including Alvin Ward, deputy executive director of Health and Athletics for the Detroit Public Schools Community District. Ward sent a special message to the “Best of Young Detroit” that he wished to convey to King Coach Ty Spencer and his entire coaching staff and team: “I am so proud of you, your coaches and team that I’m lost for words,” Ward said. “Through sadness, focus and loyal dedication, you’ve made Coach Harvel and Coach Reynolds’ proud legacies become permanent historical implants. “I was really touched after the game when the team ran that 110 for Coach Harvel. It let’s me know they are traditionally grounded and prepared to continue carrying the Crusader Nation torch. I know that my father and many other Crusader angels are also proud of you. Love ya’ll and I’m already looking forward to next year!” The second day of games brought Cass Tech to center stage. Perhaps no players in the state had higher expectations thrust upon them by media and fans than the members of the Cass Tech team. Each week the Technicians were expected to win, and each week the team delivered, including thrilling wins in the regional and semifinal rounds of the Division 1 tournament. And with a chance to claim the Division I championship and a perfect season, the Technicians made an emphatic statement in the form of a 49-20 victory against previously undefeated Novi Detroit Catholic Central. “The Best of Young Detroit” again turned to Alvin Ward to put the Cass victory in proper perspective, and he replied with words of appreciation addressed to Cass Tech coach Thomas Wilcher: “Congratulations on winning the MHSAA Division 1 football championship for the third time,” Ward said. “Through hard work, focus and loyal dedication, you have established a proud Detroit Public School League and school legacy that is now permanent. I was really impressed after the game when the team chased you down for the water shower. It let’s me know how much they care for and respect you.”

A holiday weekend to remember: Detroiters can be thankful for hard working student-athletes, dedicated coaches and committed fans, which were all on display during state championship football games at Ford Field. Ward also added that he anxiously looks forward to cheering on the Technicians next season, which is no doubt true for the entire CT Nation, including some relatively new fans. “I came to see my students play,” said Gabrielle Groce, an eleventh-grade English teacher at Cass, who is just beginning her career as an educator. “The football team adds a sense of pride and spirit to the school, and the players shine not only on the field, but in the classroom too.” The shiny Detroit story that played out during the Ford Field games also included Detroit Loyola, which ended its season as the Division 7 state runner-up. Reminiscent of the great Detroit St. Martin dePorres teams coached by the late Ron Thompson and then Greg Carter, Loyola showed that talented Detroit youth are represented in multiple leagues across the area, and fans from near and far came out to support the Bulldogs at Ford Field. “I came out to support my high school and I know they are a good team and have good players,” said Devaughn Gist, a 2011 Detroit Loyola alum, who made the trek to Ford Field all the way from Grand Rapids. As Loyola battled eventual Division 7 champion PewamoWestphalia, the Bulldogs’ cheering section included not only Loyola students, parents, staff, and alumni, but also fans wearing Cass Tech and King gear, which demonstrated a love for all Detroit youth that goes beyond school boundaries. “It’s all good for the city,” said Kim Rakestraw, a math

teacher at Loyola, who was at Ford Field bright and early Saturday morning to “support the team and the boys.” After four quarters of hard cheering, Rakestraw took time out to explain her school’s culture and spirit, which could be applied to all the Detroit teams and supporters that came out for the championship games. “Football adds to the brotherhood of our school,” Rakestraw said. “They play as a team, they work out as a team, and they support each other—being brothers that’s our motto!” (For game details on the state football championships in Divisions 1, 2 and 7, please see “Shining Stars” on the next page.)

Photo credits: Rogers William Foster and the Michigan High School Athletic Association

UAW-Ford’s Best of Young Detroit

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

United for a winning cause

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The “Best of Young Detroit” salutes the young men from Detroit representing Division 1 and Division 2 schools that were named to the Associated Press Division 1-2 All-State Team. A panel of nine Michigan sports writers selected the team. Following are the names of players from Detroit schools selected to the team.


Donovan People-Jones, Cass Tech, senior

FIRST-TEAM ALL-STATE With the help of Detroit PAL associate athletic director Ramona Cox, the “Best of Young Detroit” has been able to report on the local impact of RISE (Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality). A culminating event was held recently at the Palace of Auburn Hills and it celebrated the RISE 2016 Leadership Program Class. More than 350 students participated, including students from Cass Tech, Southfield A&T, West Bloomfield, Saline, Plymouth, Jalen Rose Academy, and Cesar Chavez. The Cass Tech participants included members of the volleyball and cross-country teams. Cox, who also coaches volleyball at Cass reports that: “My girls have already started to have the important conversations about race relations and how we can all get along and make this a better society to live in.” To learn more about RISE, please visit

QUARTERBACKS Rodney Hall, Cass Tech, senior WIDE RECEIVERS Donovan Peoples-Jones, Cass Tech, senior Ambry Thomas, King, senior LINEMEN Antonio McCants, Western, senior Jordan Reid, Cass Tech, senior LINEBACKERS Cepeda Phillips, King, senior DEFENSIVE BACKS Jaylen Kelly-Powell, Cass Tech, senior

SECOND-TEAM ALL-STATE LINEMEN Tyrone Sampson, East English, junior DEFENSIVE BACKS Zhamaine March, East English, junior

Standout receiver Donovan PeoplesJones, who helped power Cass Tech to a 14-0 season and the Division 1 state championship, was named “Player of the Year” for the Associated Press Division 1-2 All-State Team.

HONORABLE MENTION QUARTERBACKS Scott Nelson, University of Detroit Jesuit, senior RUNNING BACKS Elijah Collins, University of Detroit Jesuit, junior WIDE RECEIVERS Jae’Veyon Morton, King, junior

LINEMEN Damani Green, King, senior Carlos Vettorello, University of Detroit Jesuit, junior DEFENSIVE BACKS AJ Thomas, University of Detroit Jesuit, senior SPECIALIST Donovan Johnson, Cass Tech, senior


The high school football teams that reached the championship games at Ford Field on November 25 and 26 played longer seasons than most college squads. Despite the long grind, the overall play at Ford Field was outstanding. Following are some of the top performers during Week 14 state final games involving Detroit teams: •Rodney Hall: Cass Tech’s all-state senior quarterback did what he does best—win. His stats were good too, as he passed for 220 yards, including five touchdowns. He also added 58 yards rushing for good measure, in the 4920 Division 1 championship victory against Novi Detroit Catholic Central. •Donovan Peoples-Jones: Cass Tech’s All-American senior receiver went out in style with six receptions for 118 yards, including two touchdowns. •Teone Allen: Cass Tech’s junior slot receiver played a very key role in the title game, scoring the first points of the contest, and his second touchdown and subsequent extra point tied the game at 14 before Cass really got rolling. Allen finished with three catches for 60 yards and the two TDs.

also made seven tackles. Other standout performers for King on defense included senior linebacker Cepeda Phillips (10 tackles), sophomore defensive tackle Jalen Bell, (seven tackles, including three tackles for loss), sophomore defensive back Marvin Grant (seven tackles), sophomore linebacker Tyrece Woods (five tackles) and senior linebacker Jeremiah Thomas (five tackles). •Kailen Abrams : Loyola’s senior linebacker had a monster game for a Bulldogs’ defense that fought valiantly in a 28-14 defeat against Pewamo-Westphalia. Abrams made 16 tackles, including 12 solos, and had 4.5 tackles for loss. •Price Watkins: Loyola’s senior quarterback/defensive back was as busy as any player during the championship weekend. Against Pewamo-Westphalia, Watkins accounted for 166 total yards on offense and registered six tackles on defense.

•Donovan Johnson: Cass Tech’s senior All-American break-away back got loose on the sideline for a 60-yard touchdown run. He finished with 89 yards rushing and two TDs.

Renaissance junior outside hitter Solei Thomas, who helped lead the Phoenix to a PSL volleyball championship this season, has received a host of honors for her outstanding play. In addition to being on the PSL AllCity Team, Thomas was named to the All-Region Team and was named honorable mention All-State by the Michigan Interscholastic Coaches Association. Thomas, an all-tournament selection at the PSL Invitational early this season, is also a standout in the classroom with a 3.5 grade point average.

Former King star shines in his debut game

•Cass Tech’s Defense: After Catholic Central scored on its second possession, the Technicians’ defense was virtually flawless. At one point, Cass registered 42 unanswered points until the Shamrocks scored the final points of the game with less than a minute remaining in the contest. The leading tacklers for the Technicians were junior linebacker Dyontae Johnson (seven tackles), along with senior All-American defensive back Jaylen Kelly-Powell and senior linebacker Taron Young, who both registered six tackles. However, it was really an overall team effort for Cass on defense, as each defender played sound, intelligent football for four quarters.

A day after King hoisted a Division 2 state football crown, Martell Pettaway, a star for the Crusaders last season, rushed for 180 yards and a touchdown on 30 carries to lead the nationally ranked Martell Pettaway West Virginia Mountaineers to a 49-19 victory at Iowa State on Nov. 26. The game was the first action the true freshman had seen all season.

•Ambry Thomas: King’s senior All-American two-way specialist broke the seal on the scoring by finding the end zone on a 9-yard pass play with 12 seconds left in the first half against Walled Lake Western. Thomas’ reception gave the Crusaders a 6-0 lead and King’s defense did the rest in the second half. •King’s Defense: A shutout signals that all of the Crusaders’ defenders were on top of their games, but there were still many individual standouts, including Jesse Scarber. A ball-hawk all season, Scarber, a senior defensive back picked off two passes, and returned the second interception 56 yards for a touchdown, which gave King a 12-0 lead over Walled Lake Western early in the second half. For the season, the opportunistic Scarber registered six interceptions, but none were more important than his two picks in the Division 2 title game. Also starring in the Crusaders’ secondary during the title game was junior Jae-Veyon Morton, who intercepted two passes as well, and returned the second interception 61 yards for a touchdown to cap the scoring. Morton

Renaissance standout Thomas earns multiple honors

Your Feedback Matters The “Best of Young Detroit” welcomes feedback from our community. Please submit story suggestions and other comments to Scott Talley at or 313-590-3686.

Photo credits: Rogers William Foster and the Michigan High School Athletic Association



Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

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FLOTUS designer refuses to work for Melania Trump Sophie Theallet also urged her colleagues to follow her lead, arguing that “integrity is our only true currency.” By NewsOne Staff A French designer who has dressed First Lady Michelle Obama in the past, won’t ever dress Melania Trump, and she is urging her colleagues to get in formation with her. Sophie Theallet published on open letter on Twitter vowing that because of President-elect Trump’s sexism and racism, she will never dress his wife while they occupy the White House, according to the Huffington Post. “As an independent fashion brand, we consider our voice an expression of our artistic and philosophical ideas. The Sophie Theallet brand stands against all discrimination and prejudice,” her letter started. “As one who celebrates and strives for diversity, individual freedom and respect for all lifestyles, I will not participate in dressing or associating in any way with the next first lady. The rhetoric of racism, sexism and

First Lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama xenophobia unleashed by her husband’s presidential campaign are incompatible with the shared values we live by,” she continued. Theallet admitted that she recognizes that it’s probably “not wise to get involved in politics,” but her family-owned company “is not just about money.” “We value our artistic freedom and always humbly seek to contribute to a more humane, conscious and ethical way to

create in this world,” she wrote. “Integrity is our only true currency.“ Theallet also referred to Mrs. Obama as someone whose “values, actions and grace” resonate with her, and that working with her was “a highlight and an honor.” Theallet, who launched her own label in 2007, won the prestigious CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award in 2009 and has dressed many celebrities, including actresses Shailene

Woodley, Neve Campbell and Gabrielle Union, ABC News noted. She has also designed lines for companies such as Lane Bryant and The Gap. Looking back, it cannot be denied that the fashion industry instantly flocked to First Lady Obama in 2007 and helped catapult her to fashion icon status over the past eight years, but will her predecessor receive that same treatment? Famed designer Carolina Herrera believes that people

will eventually come around. One of FLOTUS’s favorite designers told the Business of Fashion earlier this month that she believes the industry will drop their anti-Trump sentiment in time. “I think that in two or three months they’ll reach out because it’s fashion. You’ll see everyone dressing Melania. She’s representing the United States,” Herrera said. But it’s too early to tell how things will shake out. As of now, In Style magazine said they “have no plans” to cover Mrs. Trump and while Theallet may be the first designer to publicly refuse to work with Trump, a source recently told People that all of the Trump women have gotten an icy reception from designers since the beginning of the campaign. “This has already been going on for months. Designers wouldn’t lend to Melania, Ivanka or Tiffany, so they either bought the items themselves or wore Ivanka’s brand.” The source added, “There was a lot of shopping their own closets.”

Jackie Parker named president of GM Philanthropy and Corporate Giving By Alisha Dixon Baltimore native Jackie Parker was appointed as president of General Motors Philanthropy and Corporate Giving replacing Vivian Pickard who served as president of the GM Foundation and as director of community relations. Previously known as the General Motors Foundation, GM Philanthropy and Corporate Giving, was created as a result of GM’s desire to expand its community investment efforts and civic engagement. Parker’s new role with GM is an important one. She has the ability to improve the lives of Detroiters through philanthropy and other corporate commitments. “Transforming lives. Helping people reach their capabilities. I love making a difference. I love being able to represent the company from the perspective of their heart. The work that I do it shows

Jackie Parker up from their heart. The company cares about social issues in the community. I’m passionate about transformation. So, this is a luxury to do what I’m personally inspired to do as a career.” “I’m responsible for developing a global giving strategy for General Motors. So, I manage all of our corporate giving efforts as well as the foundation grant making processes,” Parker said. “This is a one hundred year old company and I have the opportunity to take decades of giving and make it global and to help measure social impact and to expand our global giving efforts around the world.” Parker is a graduate of Hampton University and Johns Hopkins University and has worked extensively as an executive for many large corporations that include Nabisco, Campbell Soup, Quaker Oats and more. She is also the founder of JWP Consulting, a firm that helps companies and nonprofits create corporate responsibility programs. “I’m pretty good at taking vision and cascading it into reality. You can share

with me your idea or concept and my skill set is to help you flush that out and to build strategy around accomplishing your vision,” Parker said of her skills. “I have started from scratch and created a diversity and inclusion strategy for a Fortune 500 company. I’ve launched a foundation from scratch. So, I’m really good at startup operations.” I spoke with Parker about her new position, her passion and how she defines success: How has your passion contributed to your success? When I think about success, you have to be motivated by something. Whatever your intrinsic values are and having the ability to take that internal motivation and make it into a reality. Besides being motivated, to be successful I believe you have to be a great decision maker. I think you have to stay on top of your game by being abreast of your field. Always, always, always be a self-learner. Research and always learn as much as you can about your field. The more I become educated in my study, the more I became motivated to make an impact. I think also what’s transferable is the ability to listen to both your internal and external stakeholders and take that insight and collaborate. What challenges have you faced in your career? There have been several. You’re your own cheerleader. Each day you have to remind yourself why you’re in the game and of your purpose for being here. I think one of the big challenges I’ve overcome in my career since I’ve graduated from college is that it’s not easy and you have to work hard. Hard work should never stop you. Even with the obstacles we overcome with being and African American female in corporate America there are micro-inequities, there are biases and stereotypes. As long as you stand in your own power and you come to your roll with confidence, you are able to overcome some of those hurdles. Sometimes you can have the best strategy, but the culture may trump the strategy. So, as an executive, you need to be able to adapt and be flexible without losing your essence, identity and purpose. How do you maintain your essence, identity and purpose in corporate America? It’s about being authentic in your capabilities. When I show up, I’m showing up unapologetically. I’m not apologizing for what I bring to the table. I’m not apologizing for who I am. I think walking with a spirit of humility helps me to overcome some of those challenges. I don’t walk with an attitude of entitlement. I walk with an attitude of gratitude and the spirit of humility.

Thanks-Given at Tux & Chucks By Brittany Marie Banks On Thursday, Nov. 24 many of us celebrated Thanksgiving which is largely associated with football, indulging and sometimes overindulging in food, and shopping. However, the true meaning at the heart of the holiday – to give thanks – has not been forgotten by all. Amidst the hustle-and-bustle of what we’ve come to know as “Black Friday” and as a part of the Thanksgiving tradition, upwards of 700 people gathered at the annual CoolSmart, Inc. fundraising charity

Detroit Is The New Black debuts limited Flint Sister City T-shirt By AJ Williams The Detroit-based fashion label, Détroit Is The New Black (DITNB), recently got behind Flint residents by designing a Flint sister city shirt. “DITNB x Flint Tee” is in collaboration with Flint-based print shop Flint City T-Shirts and benefits the Community Foundation of Greater Flint’s Moving Flint Forward Fund. As the Flint community continues to work toward moving beyond the water emergency, DITNB. CEO and founder Roslyn Karamoko felt a strong desire to create something that would illustrate the solidarity that many in Detroit and across the region feel for the city’s residents. “After initially seeing and hearing how the water emergency impacted lives I felt compelled, like many in the country, to provide support,” said Karamoko. “Developing the Flint Tee was a natural outcome after thinking about how resilient and

positive the people living in Flint continue to be through this entire ordeal.” The design of the Flint Tee stays true to the simplistic, yet chic and modern style of the brand’s notable namesake T-shirt that boldly nods to Detroit’s history as the renaissance city. A portion of the proceeds garnered from the sale of the shirt will be donated to the Genesee Chamber Foundation. The foundation was created to address the immediate and longterm community development needs arising out of, or amplified by, the Flint water crisis and is geared specifically for small businesses, minority-owned businesses, North Flint redevelopment and general economic development activities, as well as activities that encourage tourism in Flint and Genesee County. The Flint Tee can be purchased at the Détroit Is the New Black. (DITNB) downtown Detroit store located at 1426 Woodward Ave. or online at

event, Tux and Chucks. The gathering celebrated three deserving nonprofit organizations and thanked them for their community impact. This year’s winners, Identify Your Dream, The Yunion and Teen Hype won via a tally of Facebook likes and sharers and received $2,500 each. The occasion marked the sixth year for the event which, as the title suggests, is characterized by the fashionable attire of its attendees: tuxedos and Converse Chuck Taylor sneakers. Janae, a patron and make-up artist proclaimed, “I love the chucks component. Everyone is looking fly and still able to really party.” It’s a rather sophisticated-yet-funky, grown-up event with a youthful sense of fun. After all, the organization claims to “put the f-u-n in fundraising” and they do it quite well. Above all, the underlying focus was “giving back.” The duo behind CoolSmart, Inc., Byron Suggs (35) and Jason Appling (36), took the time to chat and, are much like their brand: a couple pretty cool and smart fellas. Mr. Suggs made clear that the motivation behind both the event and the nonprofit organization is “to educate youth and younger professionals on the importance of philanthropy. The average age that a person gives back is about 50 … we want to show them that they can give back now.”

CoolSmart has partnered with Cass Technical High School as well as the Detroit Public Library and the DIA in hopes of influencing giving power. For instance, they mentor a group of 20 male Cass Technicians, inspiring them to become active within the community and cultivate a culture of philanthropy. “They see us doing it, then experience it themselves and see that it’s fun and rewarding,” Suggs proudly explained of the young men. Next year, they plan to partner with approximately 10 institutions to expand their reach. “It’s symbiotic… you’re not really successful until you’ve figured out how many people’s lives you’ve impacted. God didn’t put us here just to do good for ourselves, but to do good for others and let whatever we have spill over,” Appling explained. Suggs and Appling are humble and have hopes of reaching even higher heights. Their parting words were to thank the Michigan Chronicle and the Soundboard theater. They did make two final requests stating, “Hopefully, we can get Converse to back us! And Brittany, you need to get us featured for Michigan Chronicle’s 40 Under 40, too!” They plan to take the Tux and Chucks event nationwide in 2017, with the first stop being Chicago, Illinois, so stay tuned to what Tux and Chucks and CoolSmart, Inc. have to offer.

Page C-6 • THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE • Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

Now Accepting Nominations Submission Deadline January 27, 2017

The Michigan Chronicle is now accepting nominations for the 2017 Women of Excellence MICHIGAN CHRONICLE

awards. For the past ten years, the Michigan Chronicle has recognized local African American women who continue to break the mold and affect change in their professions and community. These women are visionaries in their given fields and inspire those around them to go beyond the norm and strive for the exceptional. They are champions of our economic empowerment and diversity, the backbone of our religious and educational organizations, and driving forces in politics and community service. These women will join the exclusive society of 450 professionals who have previously received this distinction.

Submit your nominations today.


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Reflections By Steve Holsey

Songwriter extraordinaire The other day I was listening to “You and I,” a beautiful song written and sung by Stevie Wonder, and it occurred to me that we sometimes forget just how many fantastic songs he has written.


One of the greatest things that can be said about a song is that it has woven its way into the very fabric of a society. Stevie Wonder has achieved that many times. Just about everyone knows the words to songs such as “I Just Called to Say I Love Stevie Wonder You,” “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours,” “I Wish,” “Ribbon in the Sky,” “Happy Birthday” (the Martin Luther King Jr. tribute), “You Are the Sunshine of My Life,” “Part-Time Lover,” “Sir Duke,” “My Cherie Amour,” “Isn’t She Lovely” and so many others. He also wrote “Tell Me Something Good” (Rufus), “Until You Come Back to Me (That’s What I’m Gonna Do)” (Aretha Franklin), “It’s a Shame” (the Spinners) and more. NIA LONG always seems to have something new going on. One of her latest achievements is being added to the cast of “Empire.” She will have a recurring role as Giuliana, a tough-asnails club owner who makes daring moves in the un- Nia Long derworld to land an Empire record deal. Long, by the way, has a local connection. She has relatives in Detroit and as a child, often spent summers with them. Alicia Keys shares yours truly’s feelings on society making too big a deal about sex (and nudity) and not enough about violence and killing. “We get so afraid to teach our kids about sex, or we want to hide all our body parts, and not let anybody see the beauty of lovemaking,” she said, “yet we let kids play Call of Duty all day and all night and that’s no problem? It’s very confusing and twisted.” NO DOUBT you’ve heard about Kanye West’s latest ranting on stage and him deciding to cut a show short and cancel the remainder of his concert tour. He had to be hospitalized. West’s personal physician says he had “temporary psychosis due to sleep deprivation and dehyKanye West dration.” That could well be true, but there is more to the story. Iyanla Vanzant believes there is something more serious going on, and she prays for Kanye West. “I see something that represents an imbalance,” she said, strongly implying that he is bipolar. That would explain the consistent bizarre behavior and outrageous remarks. Let’s hope that he is able to get it all together. Vanzant fears that he could “end up like Michael Jackson.” PATTI LABELLE, the superdiva icon, is, of course, also known for her culinary skills. So people are looking forward to her new TV show, “Patti LaBelle’s Place,” that will debut on Dec. 3 on Cooking Channel. She will have guests like Gayle King, Kirk Franklin and Patti LaBelle ­Estelle. On Dec. 19, Bounce TV will be bringing back “The Cosby Show.” That’s a good thing because it never should have been taken off the air in the first place. The show is special and a history maker. Cosby’s personal life has nothing to do with that.

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016

In celebration of

a gospel superstar By Steve Holsey Detroit has long been recognized as the Gospel Music Capital of the World, and one of the major reasons is Vickie Winans, whose commitment and glamour are only exceeded by her talent. Coming from a family of 14, counting her parents, Aaron and Mattie Bowman, Vickie Winans was born in Detroit — her birth name is Viviane Bowman — and began singing at the age of eight. Her brother, Tim Bowman, is a well known jazz gospel musician with several albums to his credit. While in her teens, Winans was part of a gospel group called the International Sounds of Deliverance. Later, she became a solo artist and experienced career advancement when she became associated with the first family of gospel, the Winans. She was married to Marvin Winans (playfully nicknamed “Peanut”) from 1978 to 1995. They have a son, Marvin Jr., known as “Coconut,” who is also a professional gospel singer. Vickie Winans has another son, Mario, from a previous marriage. Interestingly, he chose to work in the R&B field rather than gospel. Born Mario Brown but known professionally as Mario Winans, he has been on the national charts numerous times; his biggest hit was “I Don’t Wanna Know” that reached No. 2 on both the national R&B and Pop charts in 2004. I recall conversing with Vickie Winans a number of years ago. She was as charming and likable as she is beautiful. She is also funny. When I asked her what kind of music her son listened to (the reference was to Marvin Jr.), she said, “Gospel,” and then added, “But when they have those headphones on, you don’t know what they’re listening to!” In comes as no surprise, then, that she

sometimes does comedy on stage, with a church edge and always tasteful. There was even a comedy album titled “Share the Laughter.” Winans is also smart. During a later phone interview, she told me that she had eliminated the need for a middleman by managing herself. She would, for example, handle performance contracts by way of the fax machine. If she is still self-managed, the assumption is

that she handles many business matters by way of the Internet and cell phone. In the mid-1980s, Vickie Winans landed her first recording contract. Her debut album, “Be Encouraged,” was released in 1987 and found favor with radio programmers and the public. Among the selections was “We Shall Behold Him” which was


Carr Center will be Jazz Central Station on Friday night By Keith A. Owens Senior Editor

Dee Dee Bridgewater together with Geri Allen. If you’re into jazz, or just good music, you know what this means. It means you need to be there. This Friday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 pm, two of Michigan’s best jazz musicians will appear together at the Detroit Music Hall in a long-awaited live collaboration with the potential to be everything a true jazz lover might imagine. The two have played together before, but only as part of a larger band or in other contexts. But those joint appearances were enough to let each other know that they wanted to do something bigger and better, and under their own names. “I do know this, Geri Allen is phenomenal,” said Bridgewater. “And every time


Halle Berry says being 50 years old has given her a new sense of “fearlessness,” which in part is why she is starting her own line of lingerie, called “Scandale.” Political note: Cornel West, Tavis

See Reflections Page D-2

Dee Dee Bridgewater



Dee Dee Bridgewater

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we’ve played together we’ve just loved it. And so I’m just very much looking forward to the opportunity to collaborate with Geri. This will be our first collaboration where it’s really about she and I. Where we made a conscious effort to do a project together. The concerts we’ve done, we’ve been part of a larger band that was put together. We’ve been talking about doing stuff over the years. This is that first opportunity, so hopefully there will be more.”

from doing shows. And knowing that the music is helping people in the faith heal, and calm down so that we can all become level-headed and deal with this new reality. “I think we have to monitor and stay on top of what’s going on in this new government. That’s all we can do. Fight the fight.” What does jazz mean to you? “Jazz has got such a broad spectrum of music that falls under the heading ‘jazz,’ but the thing that’s most important for me is that it is freedom of expression. It is a music that allows individuals to express themselves freely, liberally. It is a music that I find is very inspiring, that can be very uplifting.

That wish has been granted, maybe more to our benefit than theirs. This concert is the first in a line of upcoming shows to be presented by the Carr Center that seeks not only to provide live performances but also interactive educational experiences as well, said Oliver Ragsdale, Carr president and artistic director.

Geri Allen

He refers to the events as “multi-day residencies,” which he says live up to the Carr’s credo to promote, develop, preserve and present.

What is your next project?

“What we wanted to do was have a deeper [experience]. We didn’t want to have just surface stuff. Performance can be surface. But what happens when we can preserve the culture? When we can promote the artist?” Also, as part of a further effort to reach out to young Detroit artists, the Carr Center is offering a $99 seasonal “multipass” that will grant access to all upcoming Carr Center shows for the rest of the season which extends through May 2017, including the Dee Dee Bridgewater/Geri Allen show. For each multipass purchased, a free multi-pass will be given to a Detroit music or arts student. As such, Bridgewater will be conducting a workshop at the Carr prior to the main event this evening on Wednesday at 6:30 which is free and open to the public. “Ever since we named Geri artistic director of the Carr Center, one of the first things she did was engage Dee Dee,” said Ragsdale. In an interview with the Chronicle conducted last week, Bridgewater emphasized how much she was looking forward to working with Allen. When asked what fans could expect, she said she had no idea because the show will be put together upon

Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016 Page D-2

her arrival, which only adds to the anticipation. Following are excerpts from that interview. For the full interview, go to

“I’m doing a blues and soul music project” which is due to be completed in December and coming out in May. The recording will be made in Memphis, the city of her birth, although she was raised in Flint where her family moved once she turned 3. What made you want to delve into the blues? “I listened to a radio station in Flint that I could get that was from a radio station out of Memphis that was called WDIA when I was a teenager. And I really loved the blues music, but I had promised my mother when I started to perform professionally that I would not ever do blues so I’ve never really sunk my teeth into a whole blues project. So now that she’s older and I am my own boss, I feel it’s time that I can do that. So there you go.” Why would you make such a promise? “Because I’m a diligent daughter. Just like any child makes a promise to their parents when they’re growing up. She felt that it was negative like a lot of people of her generation. My mother’s almost 90. She was just one of those folks who didn’t want her daughter singing the blues I guess because of the lifestyle. “I think those were hard times for black people, at least when my mother was younger. She

Vickie Winans

to become one of the songs most closely associated with Vickie Winans. “Be Encouraged” earned Winans a Stellar Award for Album of the Year as well as a Grammy nomination in the Best Contemporary Soul Gospel Album category. That album was followed by “Total Victory.” Winans was very happy to sign with Geffen Records in 1990 (Donna Summer was also on that label at the time.), but a problem developed. Geffen Records was bought by Universal Records and Winans’ contract was redirected to MCA Records. At MCA, Winans clearly and correctly perceived that the company wanted her to record songs that were less overtly Christian. “They don’t tell you, but you get the vibe,” Winans said. “I don’t ever want to be in that predicament again. It’s one thing when you just sing a song where you don’t use the actual name of Jesus, but it’s a whole ’nother thing when you try not to use the name.”

was born in 1927. By the time it was 1947-50, that was the height of racism. We’ve regressed. But it just had so many negative connotations to it. I think she was just trying to protect me from the kind of lifestyle that I was gonna choose for myself. I think that’s what it was. “For me it’s just about doing projects from this point on that I enjoy that I’m gonna have fun doing. So it’s nice to move away from jazz for a second.” What still gives you joy in performing? “I think being able to express myself through music, through songs. Sharing the joy of the music with audiences. I love to perform. “I’m in Oakland California right now and I had a show last night. And afterwards I went to get a drink at a bowling alley near my hotel, and 12 people came up to me that had come to the show. And they just were going crazy. And eight of the people were young, in their early 20s. And they were just beside themselves. “[They were saying] They’d never had that kind of experience before, and they loved it. And one of the guys said I made them cry. Another one told me I almost made him wet his pants ’cause he laughed so hard. And the girls were like, ‘Oh my God, you’re so sexy!’ So it’s beautiful for someone my age — I could be their grandparent! — to have that kind of effect on young people. And I had a couple of kids in the audience that were 10 and 9.

BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW…that Dusty Springfield’s soulful classic hit “Son of a Preacher Man” was actually intended for Aretha Franklin. But she chose not to record it, believing that doing so would be disrespectful to her minister father. MEMORIES: “You Ought To Be With Me” (Al Green), “Work on Me” (the O’Jays), “To Sir With Love” (Lulu), “Whispers (Gettin’ Louder)” (Jackie Wilson), “I’ll Try Something New” (the Miracles), “Gonna Get Over You” (Sweet Obsession), “Girl (Why You Wanna Make

And I think that is why is because it is a kind of freedom that you have when you express yourself through this music.” Other upcoming Carr shows include a visual arts/spoken word collaboration between Detroit’s own Larry Gabriel and Michael Kelly Williams on March 10, 2017. Gabriel has written a poem to accompany each of the visual art pieces presented by Williams.

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The following month will be an April performance by tap dancer Brinae Ali, who hails from Bridgewater’s hometown of Flint. Ali, one of the cast members of the Broadway show “Shuffle Along,” will be performing a piece that ties together tap, jazz and hip-hop.


“It’s a healing for me. Since Nov. 8 I’ve been able to heal myself. You know,

From page D-1 After recording one album for MCA, “The Lady” (no mention of “Jesus” anywhere), Winans moved on to other labels — Intersound/CGI, Verity — where she enjoyed success with such albums as “Vickie Winans,” “Live in Detroit,” “Woman to Woman: Songs of Life” and “Bringing it all Together.” The last of the four debuted at No. 1 on the national Gospel chart and remained in that position for nine weeks and spent an entire year in the Top 10. Winans’ next move was to start her own label, Destiny Joy Records, to record herself and several new signees. The degree of Winans’ popularity is evidenced by the fact that her segment on BET’s TV series “Lift Every Voice” attracted over 800,000 viewers, making it the most watched episode in the show’s history. Vickie Winans has been a mainstay in gospel music for decades and slowing down is not an option. Some people were born to do what they do; it is not just a job, it’s the fulfilling of a mission, and that mission is ongoing.

Reflections Smiley and even Louis Farrakhan have made unfair, disparaging remarks about President Barack Obama. Now let’s see what they will have to say about Donald Trump when he becomes president.

But most importantly, it is freedom of expression, and I think that is why it is a music that has been embraced around the globe in the way that it has to the point that it’s gone beyond its origins of being created by black people to being a music that is loved around the world by all kinds of people and ethnicities.



From page D-1 Me Blue?)” (the Temptations), “Mr. Melody” (Natalie Cole), “Muscles” (Diana Ross), “On and On” (Gladys Knight & the Pips). BLESSINGS to Willie Williams (thanks for the letter!), Douglas Ware, Carl Carlton, Artemesha Charleston, James Mitchell, Brenda Jones, Henry Tyler, Ernest Knight, JoAnn Franklin and Fred Holsey, Jr.

At Your Finger Tips!

WORDS OF THE WEEK, from Michael Jordan: “Some people wish it would happen. Other people make it happen.”

Let the music play!

Steve Holsey can be reached at and PO Box 02843, Detroit, MI 48202.

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Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016 Page D-3

Savannah Blue Restaurant to host fine art photo exhibit

Cirque Du Soleil returns to Detroit with OVO

By AJ Williams

Cirque du Soleil returns to Detroit in December 2016 with OVO, its newest touring show. The production will be presented at Joe Louis Arena Dec. 22-25, six performances only, as part of a global tour in arenas around North America. The show is presented by Visa Signature® in association with Flex Perks Rewards and US Bank. OVO, meaning “egg” in Portuguese, is a headlong rush into a colorful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work, eat, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love in a non-stop riot of energy and movement. The cast of OVO is comprised of 50 performing artists from 12 countries specializing in many acrobatic acts, and the Michigan Chronicle has a backstage pass via Michelle Matlock who plays “Ladybug” in OVO. A native from Seattle, Matlock graduated from the National Shakespeare Academy of New York where she studied classical Shakespearean acting. In 2001, Matlock developed a solo show, “The Mammy Project,” which explores the stereotypes and myths that the “mammy” figure has had

on contemporary American culture. In a one-on-one she shares what inspires her as a performer, her past projects and what to expect in Cirque Du Soleil OVO: Michigan Chronicle: What inspired you to pursue a career as a performer? Michelle Matlock: At the age of 17, I was cast in a Jeff Bridges film and that opportunity gave me the confidence and money to major in theater at Western Washington University, which eventually led me to study acting in New York at the National Shakespeare Conservatory. Had I not been cast in that film right before going off to college, I probably would have majored in communications. MC: What inspired your solo show “The Mammy Project”? MM: In 2003, I was asked to audition for an Aunt Jemima Pancake Mix commercial. I went to the audition and didn’t get the gig (thank God!). I realized that I was angry about being called to try out for it. I couldn’t believe that this was happening in the new millennium. I didn’t understand why I had so much anger, and why white people had so much love for this stereotype, icon, myth and why they didn’t acknowledge how of-

fensive it was to African Americans. I decided to research how this all came about, and I found Nancy Green who was the first to play the role of Aunt Jemima back in 1893. I also discovered Halle Q. Brown and Ida B. Wells who were both a part of starting the Civil Rights Movement during that same year. I was never aware of their stories, so I decided to write a show about it focusing on Nancy Green. Education about this subject dissolved my anger and allowed me to stretch as an artist. MC: What should Detroit expect from your character’s performance and the OVO show? MM: My hope is that Detroit will experience something original and fun while watching the character of Ladybug. OVO is an amazing spectacular full of colorful costumes, unbelievable human tricks and energizing music. My advice is to check your adult brain at that door and just come in and have fun! For more information or to purchase tickets, visit https://www.

Newly opened Savannah Blue Restaurant in Detroit has found a way to connect with the Detroit art scene and support art education for youth. Their contemporary northern soul food offerings and a cool, sophisticated atmosphere offer the perfect venue for introducing local artists to Savannah Blue guests. On Dec. 15, Savannah Blue will partner with Detroit based Galerie Camille to host Brian Day’s photographic exhibit “Unmistakable Detroit,” an essay about what makes Detroit unique among major urban areas. Day’s award winning photographs have been featured in exhibitions, television, print and online media around the world, including the Detroit Institute of Arts, Smithsonian Magazine, Esquire magazine, CNN and many more. Day currently serves as the chief technology officer for Henry Ford Health System in Detroit and lives with his wife of 18 years in the metro Detroit area. From 6 to 8 p.m. guests can enjoy champagne, appetizers and a chance to view the work of one of Detroit’s most creative fine art photographers. The restaurant will be open for dinner as usual, following this thought provoking event. Curated by Galerie Camille of Detroit, which nearly exclusively represents Detroit artists, the 23-piece show will allow people to meet the photographer and also support kids’ art in Detroit. Donations are suggested to help fund the Carr Center Academy art programs for elementary through high school students. For more information, contact Savannah Blue, 313926-0783, 1431 Times Square, or visit


Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016




Doris Evelyn Winfrey Doris Evelyn Winfrey, 85, of Detroit passed away on Nov. 15, 2016. Services were held at the Ira Kaufman Chapel. Interment took place at Woodlawn Cemetery. Mrs. Winfrey was the beloved wife of Earl C. Winfrey, cherished mother of Tyrone E. Winfrey, Sr. (Janice Marie), and proud grandmother of Yashica LeFay Hamilton, Tyrone E. Winfrey, Jr., Lauren Janelle Winfrey, Chad Jonathan Winfrey and the late Perry Jerrod Hamilton. She was also the loving sister of Marjorie (Joe) Odom, Frances Phelan, Lovie (Jay) Fisher, Marilyn Hopewell and Carolyn Robinson. In addition, she was the dear sister-in-law of Rosanna James and Amelia Winfrey. Between Temple Israel and Adat Shalom Synagogue, Mrs. Winfrey worked for over 35 years in the Detroit Jewish community. She was a much loved member of the community and touched the lives of everyone she came in contact with. Contributions in memory of Doris Evelyn Winfrey may be directed to the American Heart Association, 27777 Franklin Road, Suite 1150, Southfield, MI 48034, 248.936.5800, or Temple Israel, 5725 Walnut Lake Road, W. Bloomfield, MI, 48323, 248.661.5700,



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The Detroit Building Authority (“DBA”) requests established, experienced, licensed contractors (Qualified Bidders) to submit Bids for an electrical service upgrade consisting of new electric service, step-up transformer, circuit breakers, metering, connections and system testing, at the Grand Circus Park Underground Parking Garage, 1600-01 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48226, as more fully described in this Request for Bids. The DBA will receive the responses, as herein set forth, in the offices of the Detroit Building Authority, 1301 Third Street, Suite 328, Detroit, Michigan 48226. Bid Proposals shall be endorsed “Grand Circus Park Underground Garage Electrical Service Upgrades” and submitted not later than 2:00 P.M., Detroit time, on Friday, December 9, 2016, and will subsequently be evaluated to select a contractor for the contract. A processing fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00), cashier’s check or money order, payable to the Detroit Building Authority must accompany the submission of Bid Proposals. A mandatory pre-submittal meeting and site tour will take place at the Grand Circus Park Underground Parking Garage at 1600-01 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48226, beginning at 11:30 A.M., Detroit time, on Friday, December 2, 2016. Respondents may only submit one response to this Request for Bids. Participation in more than one submittal team will result in rejection of all responses by that Respondent. Respondents submitting Bid Proposals may be required to make an oral presentation(s) to designated City representatives. The issuing office, if required, will schedule such oral presentation(s). The Respondent must pay any travel costs incurred for such presentations. Respondents agree to comply with the requirements of the City of Detroit’s Ordinances and Human Rights Department. Copies of this Request for Bids may be obtained in person from Hernandez Blueprinting Services, 1798 Wabash Road, Detroit, MI, 48216, phone (313) 962-2900. No response to this Request for Bids may be withdrawn for at least 120 days after the actual opening of the bids. The DBA reserves the right to waive any irregularity in any bids and to reject any or all bids, should it be deemed in its best interest. If additional information is needed regarding this RFB, please contact the DBA at (313) 224-0174. Detroit Building Authority 1301 Third Street, Suite 328 Detroit, MI 48226

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The Director provides strategic leadership for the advancement services team that executes gift processing and accounting, budget management, talent acquisition and talent development, and operations and facilities management functions for the division. Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s Degree in Business, Finance, or Accounting or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience. Five years’ experience in a combination of accounting, financial, human resources and/or operations role with at least three years of managerial experience. This is a full time, administrative professional position. Salary commensurate with education and experience. Refer to online posting for additional qualifications and requirements. First consideration will be given to those who apply by December 6, 2016. Must apply on line to: Seeking


The Detroit Building Authority (DBA) respectfully requests proposals from interested firms to provide stabilization and supportive services on commercial and residential structures on an emergency, or asneeded basis. The scopes of work includes services required to stabilize or otherwise provide supportive services to commercial and residential structures on behalf of the City of Detroit Building Authority (the “DBA). The contract term shall be two (2) years.

Career Services

Provide direction and oversight for Career Services marketing, event planning, social media, and communications efforts. Plan and execute all career-related events includes logistics, securing volunteers and staff support, and directing marketing efforts and budgeting activities as necessary. Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in marketing, business, communication, public relations, or other related fields. One to three years’ experience in marketing and communications or related field. Demonstrated ability to work on multiple projects with competing priorities and timelines. Strong computer skills and experience with Adobe Creative suite, particularly Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and/or design programs. Familiarity with audio recording, editing, and/ or video production. Refer to online posting for additional requirements. Salary commensurate with education and experience. First consideration will be given to those who apply by December 6, 2016. Must apply on line to:

Interested firms may obtain a copy of this Request for Proposals through the City of Detroit website. Interested firms shall submit responses to the offices of the DBA, Attention: Ron Crawford, at 1301 Third Street, Suite 328, Detroit, Michigan 48226. Respondents must clearly label the envelope with “Request for Proposals – Stabilization and Supportive Services of Commercial and Residential Properties” The submission deadline for this Request is Monday, December 12, 2016, at 3:00 p.m. The DBA will hold a public opening of all submissions at 3:15 p.m. on Monday, December 5, 2016. The DBA will hold the public opening at the office location listed above. A Respondent may only submit one response to this Request for Qualifications. Participation in more than one submittal will result in rejection of all responses by that Respondent. If requested by the DBA, Respondents must make an oral presentation to designated representatives. The DBA will schedule such oral presentation(s), and the Respondents must pay any travel costs incurred for such presentation. The Respondent must agree to comply with the requirements of the City of Detroit’s Ordinances and Human Rights Department Requirements.


Respondents may not withdraw their response to this Request for at least 120 days after the actual opening of the qualifications. The DBA reserves the right to waive any irregularity in any qualifications, and to reject any or all qualifications, if deemed in its best interest. If additional information is needed regarding this RFQ, please contact Ron Crawford of the DBA at

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New ways to create ambiance at your holiday party


High-Tech Lighting Holiday decorations aren’t what they used to

be. Now you can control your decorative lighting with app-enabled technology, controlling color combinations, speed and direction of light patterns, even connecting your light scheme to music right from your phone or computer.

Sing-a-Long Want to make your own music? Even with limited space, you can make caroling and holiday sing-a-longs at your party better with an electronic keyboard that provides the same key weight and resistance of an actual grand piano. For example, Casio’s CGP-700 Compact Grand Piano features an 88-note scaled hammer action keyboard with simulated ebony and ivory textured keys. Whether you stick with classic selections or prefer newer holiday hits, now you can do so accompanied by the sounds of high-quality instrumentation ideal for home use. Hosting is never simple. But now you can let technology do some of the heavy lifting -- from music to imagery – to create the perfect ambiance at your holiday gatherings.


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DJ Apps When you are rushing around making sure everyone is fed and having a good time, you likely don’t have time to actively curate your party’s music selection. Consider downloading a DJ app in advance of your party, which can draw from your existing playlists, automatically make well-informed selections as to what to play next based on matching beats, and even mix the transitions for you. This can mean more attention paid to guests and less focus on your playlist.

(StatePoint) Hosting a party this yuletide? These days, there are new and innovative ways to set the tone for festive holiday cheer.

Page D-4

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If you woke up this morning, you need to read this By James Washington

Shirley Caesar’s exciting new business venture announced

Pastor Shirley Caesar is as intelligent as she is talented.

As the inspiration behind the #UNameItChallenge, it’s only right that she get her fair share of the “greens, beans, potatoes, tomatoes” coming her way. With that said, Caesar’s launched a new website where you can buy shirts, mugs, aprons, and more in the spirit of charity. The pastor wrote on Facebook, “Ladies and Gentleman, I am pleased to announce due to the high demand and popularity of the #UNameItChallenge featuring my song “Hold My Mule” remixed, we have launched a separate website at #unam-

eitshirley for you to email us how you feel, post your funny and inspiring videos and hopefully, buy a shirt, mug, apron, T-shirt or hoodie.” She continued, “This is my official page, which was needed, as so many folks expressed concerns that others were selling goods not connected to us. We plan to pick various ministries each week to make sure donations are made to feed folks, ‘Greens, Beans, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Lamb, Ram…U Name It’ and to help our ministry as well.” Get your wallets out and support the enterprising Pastor Shirley Caesar, plus some of the best #UNameItChallenge videos below.

Comedy for a Cause: Giving Back and Moving Forward featuring comedian Clipperman and friends

Comedy for a Cause: Giving Back and Moving Forward (CFC) will host two shows scheduled Saturday, Dec. 3. First show begins at 6 p.m. and second show, 7:30 p.m. Both shows will be performed live on stage inside the AMC Star Theater 20, Southfield. CFC shows have been designed to induce out-loud laughter. General audience admission and VIP seating are available for purchase on line. Clipperman is a nationally-recognized comedian and will celebrate 15 years since his performance at the world famous Apollo Theater. He continues to appear on comedy stages, crisscrossing states from New York on the East Coast to California on West Coast, and downward to the Florida Keys, generating laughs and garnering a strong fan base. Clipperman is known for his versatility and integration of a range of impressions including Barack Obama, Katt Williams, Sammy Davis Jr., Dave Chappelle, Ray Romano, Nikki Minaj, Lil Wayne, E-40, Tupac and many more. Clipperman has received hundreds of standing ovations delivering performances that demonstrate his love to entertain and determination to make people laugh. He has worked with some of the greatest entertainers in the business and has invited special friends to join him for the occasion. Detroit’s renowned ballroom dance trainer Kevin Collins will perform a ballroom dancing exhibition. He is self-described as being responsible for bringing ballroom back to Detroit in the late ’80s. “I have been contemplating a partnership,” Clipperman stated. Partnerships with nonprofits and churches with outreach programs focused on making a positive difference in communities is CFC’s give-back to the community and show of participation in the movement forward. On this occasion, each ticket sold will benefit two organizations: (1) Operation HOPE, Inc., since 2005, has provided core financial literacy and economic empowerment served primarily through the Banking on Our Future youth educational


program; focused on silver (not civil) rights empowerment, making free enterprise work for everyone throughout the city to strengthen low- and middle-income families and help build an economy that works for everyone. Ryan Mack serves as president of the Michigan Market. “We are trying to form an economic movement. Combining comedy, a medium we all can understand, is perfect way to help support a much needed economic work for the people. On the 3rd of December we will laugh as well as be empowered,” Mack stated. ( And (2) Nehemiah Baptist Church launched in 2010 by the founding pastor, 10 Baptist pastors and 66 members sanctioned the need for a church dedicated to helping people holistically. NBC works with collaborative community partners to engage and resurrect block clubs through activities and events to therapeutically build healthy relationships and nurture bonding among neighbors in pursuit of restoring hope in disengaged neighborhoods. Founding Pastor Dr. Audry L. Turner serves as lead organizer. “We want to bring people together for a time to laugh and dance, reintroducing decency and building healthy relationships in our communities for Christ sake,” Pastor Turner stated. Purchase $30 general admission and $50 VIP tickets online at www. or at Encore Salon inside the Star Theater or call 313701-6422. Special VIP package with dinner, limo pick up/drop off for the second show only, call RJ Scott at 313.258-1124. Sponsorship opportunities and booth rentals are available.

From evening prayer to dawn’s affirmation of God’s power, I have definitely taken this time as much for granted as anyone. After some morning prayer practice, it’s becoming apparent that I need to thank God for seeing me through the night. I ask Him to order my steps, guide my thoughts and allow me to do something during the course of the day to give indication of a deep appreciation for allowing me to wake up.

James Washington still breathing today? Is someone you know under intense pressure, emotionally, financially or physically? Did you get called about a now deceased dear friend, colleague or relative? Can you begin to see where I’m coming from? God’s Hand is everywhere in your life, if you just stop being busy and take a good look. I promise you if you just slow down a bit, you’ll see God’s presence time and again in your life; that is, if you can see past your ego or maybe it’s your never thought about it attitude.

If you allow yourself to concentrate on what God has done for you on any given day, then it becomes obvious that He is indeed here and working wonders on your behalf. If you do not believe, try this. At the end of today, take a moment and reflect on those things that you can think of that prove God was with you all day. Start with this morning, because you really didn’t have to wake up. If you hadn’t noticed, some people didn’t. If you drove, flew, took a cab somewhere and arrived safely, you might want to give God a little credit for your being accident free.

Once you begin to realize that God is present all the time, then, prayer easily and rapidly becomes praise. I mean once you recognize the real possibility that God held “my” hand today, then it stands to reason that a genuine thank you is in order. So now out of any sleep I’m awakening from comes a hand palms open with a praise that goes something like this: “Thank you Father God for seeing me through the night. Stay with me and remind me during the course of this day of your infinite blessings bestowed upon me. Let me do something. Let me say something today to make you proud and show you my appreciation of your giving me the time and opportunity to demonstrate who I am and whose I am to the world.”

Can you remember seeing anyone in need of food, clothing, a few dollars, maybe a bath? But it wasn’t you? All “natural disasters” on this day missed your house. No floods? No tornadoes? No hurricanes? No earthquakes? While I’m at it, how’s your family? Are your kids healthy? Are they simply alive and

The words might change from time to time, but the intent is the same. I hope to no longer take my consciousness for granted. There’s a reason my eyes were opened and I must acknowledge I had nothing to do with it. As such, I think it prudent to acknowledge the One responsible and seek His will.



Christine Morris Services for Christine Morris were held on Wednesday, Oct 26, at Christian Community Baptist Church with Pastor James Fergerson officiating. Mrs. Morris passed away on Oct. 18, 2016. Christine Morris was born on Feb. 15,1928 to Clarence and Minnie Shipp in Como, Mississippi, the second of five children. The family moved to Detroit in 1958 where she worked as a domestic tech, retiring in 1993. In 1968, she and Frazier Morris were married. Mother Morris was very active in the church.

(The Dallas Weekly, NNPA Member)

The closest person in the world is responsible for this one. It’s all about praying and meditating in the morning. I have watched a personal transformation right before my very eyes. I’ve watched as the quest for the habitual has become the reality of ritual, so much so, that it’s something I am trying to emulate. As a concept, it’s actually pretty easy to do. In the morning, I am not particularly in need of anything, but I understand now that calling upon the Lord is an act of spiritual clarification.

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She loved spending time with her family, traveling, church picnics, talking on the phone and going out to dinner. Cherishing the memory of Christine Morris are her children, Adrian, Darryl, Kelvin, Lawrence and Vernistine; two brothers, Jessie Davis and George Davis; a sister, Juanita House; and many other relatives and friends. Swanson Funeral Home handled the arrangements.

Interment took place at Gethsemane Cemetery.

Theo Ted Smith Services for Theo Ted Smith took place on Friday, Nov. 11, at Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church with Dr. Jeffery officiating. Mr. Smith passed away on Nov. 3, 2016. Theo Ted Smith was born on Nov. 9, 1955 in Little Rock, Arkansas to Theo and Kathleen Smith, the second of their six children. Following their untimely passing, Theo was raised by foster parents, Thronell and Theora Fourtner. They later moved to Detroit where he was educated in the Detroit Public Schools, graduating from Southeastern High School. After that, he participated in the Upward Program at Wayne State University. He joined the Detroit Police Department. Upon retirement, he worked as a private investigator. At various times in his life he also held management and security positions with the Detroit Lions, the Detroit Medical Center and the Detroit Tigers among others. He enjoyed cooking and taking care of his lawn. Mr. Smith’s memory is being cherished by his children, Jerome, Toi, Norrell and Chutney; two sisters, Velma Tutt and Kathryn Anderson; three brothers, Mirthus Thomas Smith, Thronell “Leslie” Foutner and Earl E. Smith II; and many other relatives and friends.

Swanson Funeral Home handled the arrangements.

Interment took place at Elmwood Cemetery.

Jessie Mae Burns-Hernandez On Thursday, Nov. 3, services were held for Jessie Mae Burns-Hernandez at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church with Pastor David Lee Roberson officiating. Mrs. Burns-Hernandez passed away on Oct. 23, 2016. Jessie Mae Burns-Hernandez was born on Dec. 23, 1943 to Jesse and Ollie Burns in Autaugaville, Alabama, the second of ten children. Later, there was a move to Detroit where she was educated in the Detroit Public Schools. She worked at Providence St. John Hospital in labor and delivery. She was married to the late Estanislao Hernandez and they had two children, Milissa and Dianna. She is survived by those and her four other children, Demetria, Marvin, Anthony and Aloni; three brothers, David, Bennie and Leslie; four sisters, Flora Parker, Zedora Cutler, Jean Wilson and Joann Hall; and many other relatives and friends. Swanson Funeral Home handled the arrangements along with Ashley Williams and Son Funeral Home in Salem, Alabama. Interment took place at Old Harmony Church Cemetery in Autaugaville, Alabama.


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Page D-6 • THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE • Nov. 30 - Dec. 6, 2016


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