Chicago- Continuing its commitment to economic empowerment through small business development, MillerCoors continues its legacy of support by announcing the winners of its 2010-11 Urban Entrepreneurs Series and Business Plan Competition (MUES). The recipients were awarded business grants totaling $150,000 at a special reception held at the MillerCoors corporate headquarters in Chicago. This year’s grand prizewinner, Back to the Roots, received a $100,000 business grant, with the four runners-up each receiving grants of $25,000 to contribute to their company’s start-up capital, or to expand their existing businesses. Pictured above are (back row from left) Jerome Young, MBA Power Attract Jobs Now; Randal Pinkett, keynote speaker; Nikhil Arora and Alex Velez, Back To The Roots; (front row from left) Jesse Cerda and Nancy Nkansah, Ncapsul; Terethia Waller, The Benson Mills Group; Christie Blackwell and Quiana Corde, Barazzo; and Joanne Tabellija-Murphy and Larry Waters, MillerCoors. For more information about the upcoming 2011-12 MUES competition, visit: www.millercoorsmues.com. (photo by Cliff Henri/courtesy Flowers Communications Group)
Archives for April 2011
The Willie D. Davis Scholarship Fund will award twenty-five Milwaukee area high school students, $2000.00 scholarships at the organization’s twentieth anniversary awards banquet.
Since its inception in 1991, the Fund, formerly known as The 1290 Scholarship Fund, has awarded more than $1,000,000.00 to 450 deserving students. An impressive number of the recipients have finished college and have gone on to play valuable roles in this city and beyond.
President and CEO of All-Pro Broadcasting, Willie Davis says of the opportunity to provide support for young people, “I take pride in this scholarship program.
When we launched the Fund twenty years ago, our vision was to provide real opportunities for young people to achieve their goal of acquiring a higher education.
With the support of our partners, we have been able to impact the lives of nearly 500 students and their families in positive and significant ways. That’s so important to me and will always be.”
Don Rosette, chairman of the board of the Willie D. Davis Scholarship Fund says, “Twenty years of giving back to the community with an emphasis on educating our youth is quite an accomplishment.
“I am most grateful to our many benefactors in Milwaukee, the state of Wisconsin, the nation at large and Willie Davis.”
This year’s event will take place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Milwaukee on Thursday, April 28. The keynote speaker is nationally syndicated talk show host, Warren Ballentine, known to his audience as “The Truth Fighter”.
Ballentine offers this salute to the honorees of this year’s event, “Congratulations to the 2011 class of recipients of the Willie D. Davis Scholarship. I look forward to delivering an empowering message that will uplift not only the students but the adults as well!”
Tickets for the event can be purchased at the studios of 1290 WMCS-AM, 4222 West Capital Drive during business hours. Tickets are $40 each and $375 for a table of ten.
For more information about the Willie D. Davis Scholarship Fund, log onto 1290wmcs.com or call 414-444-1290.
A strong advocate for Milwaukee Public School students, with an ability to diffuse threatening conditions, Al Lawson was admired and respected for his ability to mentor and counsel thousands of students.
Hired in September 1977 as a Milwaukee Public School safety assistant, he continued in that capacity although he had finished a Master’s Degree in Education with an emphasis on Special Education from Cardinal Stritch College.
He felt he could reach more students by remaining a school safety assistant.
Alfred Reginald Lawson was born June 15, 1952 in Milwaukee to Corine and Joseph Lawson Jr.
He attended brown Street Elementary and graduated from West Division High School, as an honor student.
He attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Alverno College, earning a B.S. degree in Business Management.
In addition to his activities as a school safety assistant, Lawson was present at many of the sports activities, working recreation supervision, as well as coaching basketball, chess, debate, and forensics.
He will be remembered for cheering on the teams, encouraging the players in tournaments.
Within the community, Lawson was a member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, the Civil Air Patrol, and the Milwaukee Public School Alumni Choir, under the direction of Arlene Skwierawski.
He often talked about the inspiration he took from singing with the choir.
In 1988 Lawson was ordained a deacon at the Tabernacle Community Baptist Church, where he served on the Usher Board and was a member of the male chorus.
He leaves to cherish his memory his wife Sheila Semons, his children Reginald Tatum, Aaron Lawson and Chelsey Lawson; his step-children Shameika Semons, Tracy Suggs and John Suggs; and 14 grandchildren; his mother Corine Lawson-Hollins; and siblings Erma Major, Michael (Georgette) Lawson, Debra (Felix) Lawson; and also a host of nieces, nephews, family and friends.
Funeral services will be held Thursday April 7 at Tabernacle Community Baptist Church at 2500 W. Medford Avenue, with visitation from 4 pm to 6 pm and the funeral at 6 pm.
Publishing companies and Apple have been fighting because the publishers see a country that is averse to reading and do not believe that allowing their books to be available on the iPad will assist in their sales.
Apple executives responded that publishing companies are too concerned with the “packaging” of their book. Apple contends, what makes the sale of a book is its content, not its packaging.
The same can be said of the body of Christ. This post-modern culture has placed too much emphasis on the packaging and not on the content. Consequently, we have run a generation away from the church because the church has become so enthralled on church appearance forgetting that God has said He is more concerned with the content. (1 Samuel 16:7.)
It is difficult to know much about a person by external indications alone. Why? There are those who are well-manicured, can quote the scriptures, and who move with an air of importunity, but upon close examination, the outside does not match what is on the inside.
By the same token, there are many who have an ordinary exterior, but underneath they are jewels in the rough.
The barometer of the presence of God in a person’s life is not relegated to a designer label. Neither is it defined by the accoutrements of the aesthetic. The presence of God is seen in those who live a life in concert with God’s Word.
The church must stop judging a book by its outer cover but look beyond the exterior and see the soul that is in need of the Savior. We must move beyond mediocrity, complacency, and traditionalism and work to reach others for Jesus.
Cornel West said: “theology, thus, has public, not private or parochial foundations. It is not restricted either to the language and traditions of a particular esoteric community or to the peculiar experience of unusual individuals.” In essence, our ministry must be a ministry that reaches out (Matthew 28:19-20) if we are to grow within.
At New Covenant Baptist Church, located at 2315 N. 38th St, where the Rev. Fred L. Crouther is the pastor, we have put our words into action. Our Young Adult Ministry has begun a new endeavor on Friday evenings to reach out to our young adult community in an effort to develop the content.
Friday Night LIVE (“FNL”) is held every 2nd and 4th Friday from 7:00 p.m.-8:15 p.m. Every 2nd Friday we hold FNL: “A Worship Experience” and the 4th Friday is an informal forum entitled “Let’s Talk About It.”
Through these forums, we have created a movement through which young adults can grow spiritually, forge a safe place for dialogue, and connect deeply with one another and the truth of God’s Word.
It is important for the church to prioritize reaching this generation. It is not enough to continue saying they are the future, but we must back it up in our actions.
By the way, you are invited to join us. When you come, remember we do not judge a book by its cover; therefore, you are invited to come as you are and be ready to praise the Lord with other excited young adults. I look forward to seeing you.
Jennifer Holliday – The Original Dream Girl and Two-Time Grammy Award winning recording artist, and her pastor, Rev. Raphael G. Warnock (pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta – the spiritual home of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.), have collaborated on a new inspirational CD of Warnock’s sermonettes that are seasoned with Holliday’s dynamic vocalizing. The ten-track project entitled, “Goodness and Mercy” (Euphonic Records), releases via Holliday’s own Euphonic Records label on April 19, 2011 with national distribution by New Day Christian Distribution in Nashville, TN.
“What and honor and privilege it is to partner with the legendary Ms. Jennifer Holliday,” says New Day’s Director of Artist Relations, Thomas Rollins. “All of the staff at New Day is excited about the endless possibilities and opportunities distributing an artist of this caliber provides us. We look forward to a long relationship.”
The new radio single, “God is Faithful,” is currently available as a digital download on CDBaby.com and will soon be serviced to gospel radio formats for airplay.
Holliday is most famously known for creating and portraying the dramatic role of Effie White in the original Broadway production of “Dream Girls” and her show-stopping signature song, “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going.” Holliday has since recorded five solo CDs and two Broadway and movie soundtrack recordings. She has also made numerous guest TV appearances as an actress, most notably for playing the role of Lisa Knowles for five seasons on the hit Fox TV show, “Ally McBeal.” Today, she continues to perform around the world in concerts and Symphony Pops Orchestra engagements, as well as, guest Broadway appearances.
Since 2005, Warnock has served as pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church. A graduate of Morehouse College, Warnock later earned Master of Divinity, Master of Philosophy, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.
He interned at the Sixth Avenue Baptist Church where he eventually became a youth pastor prior to holding pastoral positions at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in New York City and Douglas Memorial Community Church in Baltimore. Warnock, known as a liberation theologian, is very passionate about Social-Justice. He is an “Activist-Pastor” and is constantly sought after as a speaker and guest commentator for CNN, ABC’s “Good Morning America” and the CBS Evening News.
A Black Marriage Day Seminar was held at the Brentwood Church of Christ on March 26 to celebrate the national observance that is always on the fourth Sunday in March. This year’s theme was: “Married and Proud of It!” Attendees enjoyed an enriching event that focused on the cultural and spiritual importance of marriage in the African American community.
Pictured are Thomas and Clarene Mitchell, organizers of the event and members of Brentwood, Barbara E. White, who provided the presentation and Avis Nichols of Soaring in the Spirit Ministries who performed a solo. (Photo by Robert Bell)
The goal in any foster program is permanency for the children. Lethia Evans has achieved it for four children in two ways: she adopted one child she had fostered for a year and half, and she helped three others return to their biological mother.
“Kids are my passion,” said Lethia, who is a treatment foster mother through St. Aemilian-Lakeside, a social services agency at 89th and Capitol. She takes in children who have suffered abuse and neglect and have serious behavioral challenges.
Lethia adopted her 10-year-old daughter last November. She has two grown children, always wanted more, and got into treatment foster care with a goal of adopting. When the girl came to her home, she suffered from ADHD, had physical disabilities and emotional concerns. Since then, she has seen tremendous progress and her grades at school have greatly improved.
The biggest problems arose, surprisingly, when she got close to adopting. The girl had been in at least four homes before.
“A lot of these kids go from home to home and they get used to that,” Lethia said. “They fear a new home …. But then she saw I was strong and gave her unconditional love. She realized I was sticking it out till the end.”
Lethia now calls it a perfect match. “With our closeness, you’d think she was my (biological) child. She said to me, ‘Mama, I wish you would have birthed me!” I told her, ‘I didn’t but no one has to know unless you tell them. We changed her name and we left her past past. We focus on the future … We have a new kid now, and she’s a happy kid.”
Before the adoption, Lethia was a treatment foster mother to twin girls and a younger sibling. They were supposed to be an emergency placement but ended up with her for a year and a half.
Their mother was homeless, could not care for them, and had surrendered them to the foster system. One child was very angry, and things were not easy for Lethia. The girls kept in contact with their mom as she put her life back together, and Lethia stressed that reunification was the goal.
“But in the meantime, I told them, I’ll be a mother to you while your mom is not able to support you… I reinforced ‘Your mom is working on this … but it takes time.” ”
When the family was reunified, it was hard for Lethia. “You feel the pain, but it makes you feel good…. If you can keep kids with their parents, it’s a wonderful thing.”
Lethia now has two additional treatment foster kids, one she has had for just over a year and who she may be able to adopt, and another on an emergency placement.
“If I had the house, I’d adopt 10 kids!” Lethia said with a laugh, adding that she gravitates to kids others might not want. The training she receives through St. Aemilian-Lakeside have been very helpful in understanding and working with her foster kids, she said.
“It’s giving a child a chance … It’s being able to give a child a stable home. They didn’t ask to be in the situations they are in.”
For more information on treatment foster care, call 414-465-5700 or visit www.st-al.org.
On Saturday, February 26, The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. hosted its semi-annual Community Day event benefiting local nonprofit organizations. Twice a year, local 501C3 organizations, schools and churches sell booklets at the store to earn funding needed to support their mission. The February event helped non-profits raise over $4 million.
Community Day allows for organizations, in partnership with their local Bergner’s, Bon-Ton, Boston Store, Carson Pirie Scott, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s, Younkers and Parisian stores to fundraise by selling a $5 coupon booklet to shoppers in the community. Groups selling the booklets are able to keep 100 percent of the funds. Booklets are also available for purchase at the store. Some success stories from this year’s event are included below:
• The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer, has raised over $18,000 from the past 3 years of participating in Community Day. They have also been successful in raising awareness and providing hope for people who were either affected by or knew people affected by blood cancer.
Isabel Society of Harter House, based in Anderson, IN, is a board composed of thirty local women, whose purpose is to actively perpetuate the need for church sponsored housing for the elderly through public awareness and fund raising. First partnering with Community Day in 2007, they have now earned just over $30,000 to support their cause.
• The Westmont Chamber of Commerce of Westmont, IL, that supports school programs and initiatives as well as provides scholarships to students living in the Village of Westmont, sold $1,260 worth of booklets. Students from Westmont High School, several chamber and committee members and the Assistant Principal from Westmont High School all pitched in to raise the funds.
• Oak Brook Community Church Hills and Hollers Ministry from Illinois puts together food bags for families in the Appalachian region of southeastern Kentucky every Christmas, costing approximately $3,000 to $3500 each year. The $1,475 that was raised contributed to meeting almost half of their goal.
• The Cub Scouts Pack 381 from Hartland, MI fundraised for a single mother and her son in their group, who loves to go to Cub Scout Resident Camp in the summer, to help cover the expensive cost of attendance.
• The West Des Moines Lynx baseball team from Iowa uses the event to make the boys feel invested by contributing to a portion of team costs through fundraising. The money raised has paid for uniforms, equipment, and tournament entry fees.
In the fall, Buddies, Bridges and Brains, Inc. from Victor, NY used funds to provide over 2,000 books and blanket sets to low income students just in time for the cold winter.
Achievement gaps narrowing; district to tackle math next
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has released results of state standardized tests for Wisconsin school children. Milwaukee Public Schools’ test results show continued gains for students in reading, with as many as 25 MPS schools showing double-digit increases in their students’ reading scores.
Those schools include Eighty-First Street, Lincoln Avenue, Clarke Street, Hi-Mount and Franklin Elementary Schools. Two schools, Rogers Street Academy and Browning Elementary, had double-digit increases in both reading and math.
The annual Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination (WKCE), was administered statewide in autumn of 2010. Overall, 59% of all Milwaukee Public Schools students were proficient or advanced in reading. That’s an increase of two percentage points since the fall of 2009.
District administrators give part of the credit for improvement in reading scores to MPS’ Comprehensive Literacy Plan – new this school year – though when the WKCE was administered it had been in use just two months. The literacy program included new textbooks for all students from kindergarten through 8th grade.
It was launched after a massive retraining effort for elementary school teachers, who attended professional development sessions by the thousands last summer, and then jumped into the program in September. “We were able to build momentum by expressing higher expectations for students and staff, monitoring our schools for consistency, and setting up the new instructional design,” said Superintendent Gregory Thornton.
“We anticipate higher gains next year if we can continue the focus.”
The district and DPI analysis of WKCE data showed:
• 24 MPS schools had double-digit increases in the number of students reading on grade level.
• 25 schools had increases in reading proficiency rates of five to 10 percentage points, and 49 schools showed increases of less than 5%.
• 30 MPS schools had reading proficiency rates that were at, above, or within the overall state proficiency level.
• 26 MPS schools had proficiency rates in math that were at, above or within 90% of the overall state proficiency rate, though MPS math scores overall declined by one percentage point.
• Achievement gaps seem to be decreasing statewide. DPI reports achievement gap reductions across all racial and ethnic groups.
The overall WKCE results for MPS are particularly significant, given the high mobility of city students, a student poverty rate of more than 80% and the high number of special education students now concentrated in MPS.
Special education students now make up almost 19% of the MPS student population, a total of more than 17,000 students.
MPS Chief Academic Officer Dr. Heidi Ramírez stated that “hard to serve students are better served in MPS,” a fact borne out by DPI’s comparison of MPS test scores with the test scores available for the first time for the publicly-funded voucher schools in the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program (MPCP).
DPI’s review showed that 13% more MPS students are proficient in math than voucher students, and the MPS proficiency rate for reading is 4% higher than the rate for voucher students.
In addition, a comparison of test scores also shows that City of Milwaukee children who are economically disadvantaged have higher reading scores in MPS schools than those in voucher schools. “If you are a high-poverty or disabled student, you do better in MPS,” said Dr. Ramírez.
“Our schools are showing progress because they are working strategically.”
The DPI release showing MPS/Choice school comparisons is online at http://dpi.wi.gov/eis/pdf/dpinr2011_30.pdf MPS is on target to create a comprehensive program for science and math next year, similar to the district’s literacy plan, and district administrators believe that will boost math scores.
The math and science plan is being developed with the help of GE Foundation resources, but another resource is in danger of ending.
“MPS has had a state grant that funded math teacher-leaders in our schools,” said Superintendent Thornton.
“The governor’s proposed budget cuts include elimination of those critical staff members. We worry about being able to sustain our math focus without them. Our business partners are worried, too, because math is important to the development of students as future members of the workforce.”
Wisconsin Student Assessment System results for individual schools and districts levels are available on the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Web site at http://dpi.wi.gov/sig/index.html. Click on “Data Analysis.”
Maybe you’re a high school senior wondering what to do after graduation. Maybe you’ve been working for a while and need to train for a new career.
Whichever category you fit into, choosing the college that’s right for you can be confusing. That’s why the people at Bryant & Stratton College put together some points to consider to help you choose the college that’s best for you:
A college’s placement rate for its graduates is partially based on its relationship with local employers. Today, many colleges continually reach out to employers for a number of reasons: to learn what skills they want their employees to have, to place students with them for internships, and to place graduates with them when they have job openings.
A college that hires faculty members who have real-world experience in their fields can provide their students with a practical, hands-on education that can be a real benefit in the workplace.
According to college.gov, a website being developed by the U.S. Department of Education, the Department will award about $100 billion dollars in student aid this year. You should talk to the college’s financial aid office, so together you can determine what kinds of aid you may be eligible for.
Learning in the classroom (or online) is still the predominant way the educational process works. But many colleges now combine classroom learning with on-the-job experience in the form of an internship. An internship will put you in a “real world” work environment and give you the kind of experience employers look for. So, it makes sense to ask the college you are considering if they include an internship for their students as part of their curriculum.
If you want to move from college to a good career as quickly as possible, look for a college that can help you accomplish this. For example, Bryant & Stratton College offers degree programs in growing industries like healthcare, business, technology and the legal field that you can complete in as few as 16 months of full-time attendance.
If you’d like more information about what to look for in a college, come to Bryant & Stratton College’s Community Career Fair, Thursday, April 14th, from 2 – 6 p.m. at the Tommy Thompson Youth Center on the Wisconsin State Fair Grounds, 640 S. 84th Street in West Allis.
For more information about the Community Career Fair or about attending classes, contact the Bryant & Stratton campus near you: Downtown on West Wisconsin Avenue, in Wauwatosa on West Potter Road, and in Bayshore at Bayshore Town Center. Or call 1.866.561.0841.
You can also visit www.bryantstratton.edu or find Bryant & Stratton College on Facebook.