by Taki S. Raton
Milwaukee’s Community Brainstorming will present its 23nd Annual Community Brainstorming Conference James Howard Baker Award Dinner Friday, November 16 at the Radisson Milwaukee North Shore, 7065 North Port Washington Road. The social hour will begin at 5:30 and the dinner at 6:30 p.m.
Founder and CEO of Growing Power, Inc. Will Allen will be the 2012 Recipient of the annual James Howard Baker Award. The keynote speaker for this year’s celebrative event will be California’s 35th District Congresswoman Maxine Waters.
Remembered by many as a person of quiet dignity, a hard worker and dedicated to the elevation of Black people, James Baker was one of the founders of the Brainstorming forum. An engineering graduate of the University of Cincinnati and an engineer with the City of Milwaukee, Baker also worked with the Community Journal where he organized and oversaw implementation of the newspaper’s Job Fair.
Prior to his passing in 1990, he was known in the community for his unending research and his advocacy for the inclusion of people of African descent in every aspect of political and economic life in Milwaukee.
He was revered as a one man urban research center and was also known as a solid intellectual yet maintaining that unique touch which resonated in every segment of his community.
Baker on his own time spent hours researching existing and proposed legislation, laws, regulations, policy and pertinent data that would have an impact on the lives of African Americans, particularly in Milwaukee.
A prolific writer, this community stakeholder would fashion papers on his findings and provide an analysis of the information that would assist people in the understanding of how his data could affect their daily lives.
“He shared his findings at Community Brainstorming,” says Community Brainstorming Conference chairperson Russell W. Stamper, Sr. He adds that “his research was accurate and his analysis impeccable. If a policy maker came to Brainstorming and was foolish enough to tell only one side of the story, Jim Baker in his soft spoken non-confrontational voice would fill in the blanks. His efforts helped shape public policy so that it worked for people.”
Reflecting many of these same qualities, Will Allen has been recognized as among the preeminent thinkers of our time on agriculture and food policy. He is considered the leading authority in the expanding field of urban agriculture. According to his website, a primary focus of Growing Power is to provide equal access to healthy, high quality, safe and affordable food for people in all communities. This initiative provides hands-on-training, on-the-ground demonstrations, and outreach and technical assistance through the development of community Food Systems that help people grow, process, market and distribute food in a sustainable manner.
The son of a sharecropper, a former professional basketball player, an ex-corporate sales leader, and now farmer, Allen was awarded a Ford Foundation leadership grant on behalf of his urban farming in 2005.
I 2008, he was recognized by the MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” for his work in urban farming and sustainable food production. In 2009, the Kellogg Foundation awarded Allen a grant to create jobs in urban agriculture.
He appears in the film documentary “Fresh” where he is referred to as “one of the most influential leaders of the food security and urban farming movement.”
Allen is co-author with Charles Wilson of the book “The Good Food Revolution: Growing Healthy Food, People and Communities.”
In 2010, he was invited to the White House to join First Lady Michelle Obama in launching “Let’s Move!” her signature leadership program designed to reverse the epidemic of childhood obesity in America.
Time Magazine further name Allen in 2010 as one of the 100 Most Influential Persons in the World.
On May 20, 2012, Allen was awarded an honorary Doctor of Agriculture degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American politics today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters has gained a reputation as a fearless and outspoken advocate for women, children, people of color and the poor. She was elected in November 2010 to her eleven term in the House of Representatives with almost 80 percent of the vote in the 35th District of Columbia. She represents a large part of South Central Los Angeles, the communities of Westchester and Playa Del Rey, and the diverse cities of Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood and Lawndale.
Congresswoman Waters is a senior member of the House Committee on Financial Services and serves as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises. She additionally serves on the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises, the Subcommittee on Insurance, Housing and Community Opportunity, the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, and on the House Committee on the Judiciary, where she sits on the Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet Subcommittee and the Immigration Policy and Enforcement Subcommittee.
Tickets for this 23rd Annual James Howard Baker Award dinner can be purchased through November 9 from 2 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. at the Center for Veterans Issues, 315 West Court Street. Ticket price is $20 or $200 for a table of 10. Interested parties after November 9 are urged to call (414) 507-2123 after 4 p.m. to ticket purchase.
Archives for November 2012
The wonderful and challenging readings that have been assigned to us for November 11 are: I Kings: 17:10-16, Hebrews 9: 24-28 and Mark 12: 38-44. As happens most often in the assigned readings, the first reading and the Gospel have a connection. The Epistle is generally not linked to the other readings.
The first reading gives us the wonderful story of Elijah and the widow of Zarephath. A drought has hit the land and the widow and her son have only enough food for one more meal and then they will die. Here comes Elijah and asks for some of the last food the widow has for herself and her son! On first glance it sounds like Elijah is inconsiderate to say the least. But the story ends well for the widow and her son, thanks to the faith she has placed in Elijah’s promise that she would not run out of food. She trusted and gave her last piece of bread to Elijah. She gave her all, just like the widow in the Gospel story.
We are all baptized as priests, prophets and royalty. As we live out our call to be prophets, to whom is God sending us as he did Elijah to speak a word of encouragement? “Drought” is a symbol for anyone who is in dire need of food, housing, a sense of self worth and dignity as God’s children. As we look around we will find “drought” in many places.
In Mark’s Gospel we read about the poor widow who was observed by Jesus putting all the money she had into the Temple treasury. She, much like the widow of Zarephath, was a woman of faith. Both widows show their faith in a caring God who will not overlook them.
Jesus was “teaching” that day when he observed the widow placing her last money in the collection plate of the Temple. He was teaching the disciples and all who would listen that this woman should not be in such poverty in the first place. If the leaders of the religion were not so greedy, they would have observed the poor widow and taken care of her as the scriptures command. He leveled his criticisms at the scribes, but all of us, especially those of us who are “professional” religious people need to heed the same warning.
As Jesus says so many times, “Let those who have ears to hear listen.” Are poor widows and children a statistic to you? If they are, then the criticism Jesus leveled at the scribes can be leveled at us too. Our money could not be better used than on the poor and powerless.
President Obama reminded America that there was only one direction that he wanted to take us – forward. His battle cry caused me to reflect on what forward means for the believer.
We recognize that Christ died so that we can move forward in an abundant life – one that is full and rich in intangible ways and some tangible.
God wants you and I to move forward. We are not called to be stagnant, live defeated lives or be in a constant spiral of disgust, disappointment, failure and depression. God is sending a clarion call to the Christian Church universal to move forward!
F – Find your foundational truths. As Christians we have strayed too far from the foundational truths of the bible. Taking a stance for the beliefs espoused in the Bible may not be popular, but we are not called to shift with the winds of popularity, we are called to set and live a standard of holiness. It is time for us to get back to the Bible in an uncompromising way.
O – Offer assistance to those in need. We must make sure that we assist people who have been marginalized by poverty, age, racism, disability or educational disparities. Micah 6:8 says, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humblywith your God.” No matter how well things are going for us individually, we can never stop caring about those who are suffering. This goes well beyond Election Day – it streams into our everyday lives and how we show support to agencies such as Milwaukee Health Services, Goodwill Industries, Feeding America and others who work daily to assist people in need.
R – Remember the cost of where we are. Even in the midst of our jubilation remind those around you that a great price was paid so that we can move forward. Historically, generations of people suffered degradation, violence and death to allow us the privileges we so often take for granted. Spiritually, Christ died so that we can move forward from sin into life in Him. Both sacrifices, although vastly different – deserve appreciation ad respect.
W – Watch and Pray. Luke 21:36 tells us “Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” While many blessings have been bestowed there are still many things happening around the country that are against the word and will of God that we must be vigilant to stand against. Even as we pray – we are called to watch or be aware of things that are happening around us.
A– Agree to work together. Too often we have failed to move forward because we refuse to work together to arrive at workable solutions. We have missed opportunities to enhance our schools, save money, reform our police department and revitalize neighborhoods because we can not agree even in principle to stay at the table as long as it takes to make sure the community wins – not just individuals.
R – Restore the family. In order for our nation, states, and communities to move forward we have to begin to restore the family. There is something amazing that God does within a functional family that shapes people long after they have left the home or parents have gone on to be with the Lord. A good family shapes its members for long term success that positively impacts the world and changes the lives of other families that they touch, regardless of the ever-changing legal definition of marriage. As Christians, we must unapologetically champion the cause of biblical marriage between one man, one woman for a lifetime. They aren’t changing principles for opinions at the mosque or the synagogue and it is time for us to stand just as strongly on what we believe regardless of public opinion.
D – Do. People are tired of Christians talking about what should happen, what should be, and what the world should look like. It is time for us to be people of action who do what we are called to do. This week, make a decision to move forward. Forward requires changes and it requires courage – but it is the direction that God has called for us to go even beyond the next four years.
Annual Harvest Time Conference
The Mt. Zion Assembly of the Apostolic Faith Church’s Ministries and Women of Vision & Excellence staff invite you to our Annual Harvest Time Conference November 9 – 11, 2012.
Dynamic seasoned speakers and workshop presenters to usher in the presence of the Lord, as we learn the importance of producing a harvest through the seeds of prayer, praise, and prophecy.
All services will b held at Mt. Zion Assembly of the Apostolic Faith, 4300 N. Green Bay Avenue, where Dr. Cora Parchia is pastor and Evangelist Monica Price is co-pastor.
A City Called To Worship
Please join us for praise, prayer, worship and song – giving God all the glory. Going before the Lord for such a time as this, we have been called to build God’s Kingdom! For four days we will go before the Lord.
Wednesday – November 7, 2012 @ 7:00 pm
Inter-Denominational Church of the One Lost Sheep
2567 No. 8th Street – Milwaukee, WI.
Host Pastor: Bishop Warren Kirkendoll
Thursday – November 8, 2012 @ 7:00 pm
Agape Love Deliverance Church
4716 West Lisbon Avenue – Milwaukee, WI.
Host Pastor: Dr. Joyce Marie Dixon
(Parking in the Rear)
Friday – November 9, 2012 @7:00 pm
God’s Hand Ministry
5401 No. 76th Street #107 – Milwaukee, WI. (Parking in Rear)
Host Pastor: Pastors Mickey & Roz McClinton
Saturday – November 10, 2012 @ 6:00 pm
God’s Hand Ministry
5401 No. 76th Street #107 – Milwaukee, WI. (Parking in Rear)
Host Pastor: Pastors Mickey & Roz McClinton
Fellowship Reception Immediately Following Saturday Service
For additional information, please contact Pastor Linda M. Words – 414-719-1371.
After months of campaigning, countless political ads and three televised debates, it all came down to one day when Americans could let their voice be heard. And Americans chose to give President Barack Obama four more years in office. The president swept the swing states, garnering 303 electoral, needing only 270 to win the election.
In his victory speech at Chicago’s McCormick Place, President Obama thanked his family and supporters, while addressing a divided nation.
Said the president: “I believe we can seize this future together because we are not as divided as our politics suggests. We’re not as cynical as the pundits believe. We are greater than the sum of our individual ambitions and we remain more than a collection of red states and blue states. We are, and forever will be, the United States of America.”
Layna Davis had reached a turning point when she came to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee as a transfer student in the Peck School of the Arts theater program. She arrived from New York, discouraged and depressed about her dream of building a career in the theater, she says. Her experiences at UWM have changed all that.
“Now that I’m here I can see it all happening. I’ve had a lot of doors opening up that were never there before.”
“I really love the arts,” says Isiah Davis (no relation to Layna), who plays the bass and majoring in music education, but is planning a career in higher-education counseling. Isiah, who started learning piano and guitar when he was 7 or 8 years old, came to UWM for its strong music program, but discovered a new career direction while working as a resident assistant with University Housing. But even after he completes graduate work and moves into working with college students, he says, “I’ll be playing music all my life.”
Layna and Isiah are examples of the different directions UWM’s arts programs can take students. This year, the university’s Peck School of the Arts is celebrating its 50th anniversary with the Year of the Arts. The celebration features hundreds of extra dance, music and theater performances, art and design exhibitions, film screenings and other arts events – most free and open to the public – in addition to numerous regularly scheduled performances. More than 50 campus and community partners are involved in the arts programming. (See www.yoa.uwm.edu for a complete schedule of events and more information).
Layna Davis is directing a play, “Some Girl(s),” by one of her favorite playwrights, Neil LaBute. “Some Girl(s),” which runs Nov. 8-11 at Kenilworth Studio 508, 1925 E. Kenilworth Pl., focuses on a commitment-phobic writer who’s visiting a string of ex-girlfriends. The play’s style – done in a series of vignettes – and its focus on relationships make it a good fit for university students as well as the general community, says Davis.
And Isiah Davis and his bass are prominently featured in some of the posters and promoting the Year of the Arts.
Finding unexpected opportunities
Both agree that they found opportunities at UWM that they never expected.
UWM’s many community connections have enriched her experiences here, says Layna Davis, who grew up in Door County. “There are a lot of really creative people here,” she says. In particular, the partnerships and outreach with communities of color have helped her tap into her own Latina roots.
“I used to think of my ethnicity as something that might bring me down,” she says, but she’s now getting to know the active local Milwaukee Latino community through theater. “Michelle Lopez-Rios (associate professor of voice and speech) has been a really great source of information and support.”
Isiah Davis, who grew up in Milwaukee, says he was excited by the opportunity to learn from Laura Snyder, who played bass with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and being able to play at Carnegie Hall with the UWM Orchestra last year. “Every teacher is different, but they all make it interesting,” says Davis of his UWM classes.
He likes UWM’s diversity and the chances he’s had through his work, extracurricular activities and classes to meet people all over campus. And his job in University Housing inspired him to change career directions from a full-time profession in music to working with young people starting college. “I’ve had a lot of good experiences here.”
Layna Davis’ goal after she earns her bachelor’s degree in fine arts (BFA) is to head for graduate school to earn her master’s degree, eventually hoping to work as an actor and acting teacher.
“I’ve had some really great teachers at UWM and I’ve learned a lot from them. They’ve really helped me learn to not get discouraged and work toward a career in the arts.”
Brown Street Academy Boys & Girls Club members may not have been old enough to vote but they were old enough to know that it’s important to exercise one’s right to vote. That’s why they hosted a Voters’ Day Fair to educate both parents and students about election process and encourage their parents to vote.
The Voters’ Day Fair was held last Friday at Brown Street Academy, 2029 N. 20th Street. The event was made possible through Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee’s Young Leaders Community Action Fund.
At the Voters’ Day Fair, parents had an opportunity to get information on where to vote and how to register for voting. There was also a carnival with family-friendly games like “Pin the Flag on the White House,” election fun facts and performances.
Thanks to a gift from the Joseph and Vera Zilber Family Foundation, the Boys & Girls Clubs’ Young Leaders United Community Action Fund allows children and teens who live in the Lindsay Heights neighborhood to identify and financially support ideas to put forth by their peers that will enhance the life for all of its residents, schools and businesses.
Members of Brown Street Academy Boys & Girls Club came up with the concept, prepared a proposal for it and presented it to a panel from Young Leaders United Advisory Council.
Brown Street Academy and Augusta M. LaVarnway Boys & Girls Clubs, and Neu-Life Community Resource Center received grants of $850 and $300, respectively, from the fund for their projects.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee is celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2012. For all the latest Club news, visit www.boysgirlsclubs.org, www.facebook.com/bgcmilwaukee or [email protected]
MPSʼ existing Craig Montessori School in northwest Milwaukee has a waiting list
Prospective city and suburban parents are invited to two community meetings to discuss the possibility of a new MPS Montessori school serving northwest Milwaukee and suburban neighborhoods.
Milwaukee Public Schools’ existing Montessori school in northwest Milwaukee, Craig Montessori at 7667 W. Congress Street, has a waiting list.
Nearly every student in MPS’ longest-standing Montessori programs outperforms the district average and many outperform the state average.
Two of MPS’ Montessori schools were recently rated as “exceeds expectations” by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
If the proposal moves forward, the new school would serve 120 3- and 4-year-olds next school year (2013-14). Wrap-around child care would be available from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Meetings are set for Monday, November 12 and Wednesday, November 14, both at 6:30 p.m. at MPS’ Lowell P. Goodrich School, 8251 N. Celina Street, Milwaukee 53224. (The new school would be located at another site which has not yet been identified.)
If approved, the new school would be the ninth Montessori program in MPS, which offers Montessori education from grades K3 through 12. Existing MPS Montessori schools are: Lloyd Barbee (north side), Craig, Fernwood (southeast side/Bay View area), Kosciuszko (south side), Highland (MPS-authorized charter/near west side), Howard Avenue (far southeast side), Maryland Avenue (east side) and MacDowell (west side/K-12).
Milwaukee Public Schools is Wisconsin’s largest school district, serving nearly 80,000 students in more than 160 schools across the city.
U.S. News and World Report named MPS’ Rufus King International School and Ronald Wilson Reagan College Preparatory High School the two best high schools in the state and among the 200 best in the country in 2012.
In the past year, Milwaukee Public Schools posted a growing graduation rate 17 points higher than the rate for 2000.
Eve Hall (second from left), president and CEO of the African American Chamber of Commerce (AACC), welcomed Common Council President Willie Hines (next to Hall), U.S. Congresswoman Gwen Moore (second from right), and Delon D. Price from American Family Insurance, to the AACC’s membership drive and networking event held recently at PAJE’, 2213 N. Dr. Martin Luther King Drive. The AACC event, sponsored by American Family Insurance, allowed the minority business organization to mingle with Milwaukee’s top entrepreneurs and professionals while learning about the new direction and benefits of an AACC membership. American Family Insurance also shared with the gathering its business accelerator program, which offers free growth coaching for your business. (Photo by Yvonne Kemp)
When: November 17, 2012
Where: 3624 W. North Ave
Time: 1pm – 3pm
Wonderfully Made will be providing free chili as well! We also are accepting new or gently used coats for all ages and genders for more info please contact Montell Glover @ (414) 233-9936 or [email protected]