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Archive for November 22nd, 2013

Attorney General Madigan, Mayor Emanuel file suit against second pet coke site

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Attorney General Madigan, Mayor Emanuel file suit against second pet coke site

Suit Calls on Beemsterboer to remove illegal refinery waste piles, halt intake

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced a lawsuit against the owner and operator of a bulk materials storage and handling facility, asking that piles of petroleum coke (pet coke) and metallurgical coke (met coke) be removed until proper permits are obtained and to cease all operations that are sending particles into nearby residential areas on Chicago’s southeast side in violation of air pollution and environmental laws, including taking in any new pet coke and met coke.

The joint complaint filed late Thursday against owner George J. Beemsterboer, Inc. and Beemsterboer Slag Corp., which operates the 22-acre facility along the Calumet River at 2900 E. 106th St., seeks a court order that would require Beemsterboer to remove pet coke and met coke from its Chicago facility and prohibit the company from storing, handling, screening, loading and unloading pet coke, met coke and other unpermitted materials at its 106th Street location until it obtains an operating permit from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA). The City of Chicago is also seeking a preliminary injunction requiring Beemsterboer to immediately cease and desist from further violations of City ordinances.

“Beemsterboer’s failure to follow the environmental laws is a serious threat to the public health,” said Attorney General Madigan. “The company must take action immediately to stop the air pollution from its illegal operations.”

“We cannot allow this company to openly violate laws and continue operations that may place the health of Chicago’s children and families at risk. We are going to work with the Attorney General to ensure these violations are addressed and the company pays the appropriate penalties for failing to meet its obligations to protect the public from these materials,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “We worked to close the Fisk and Crawford coal plants to reduce air pollution in Little Village and Pilsen, and we will work to improve the air quality for residents on Chicago’s southeast side.”

“There is no place in Illinois for facilities that do not prevent uncontrolled pollutants from harming human health and the environment,” said Lisa Bonnett, Director of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. “IEPA will continue to work with the USEPA, the Attorney General’s Office, the City of Chicago and the community to ensure that these facilities fully comply with the Environmental Protection Act.”

Materials handled at Beemsterboer include pet coke, met coke and lesser amounts of coal and other toxic materials. The site is near a similar facility sued by Madigan’s office earlier this month.  An operating permit issued by the IEPA allows for coal operations but does not authorize Beemsterboer to handle any other type of material such as pet coke and met coke.

Pet coke is the solid by-product of petroleum refining which generally contains high concentrations of carbon and sulfur, and also may include trace elements of metals such as vanadium, nickel, chromium and lead. Met coke is produced by subjecting bituminous coal to extremely high temperatures to produce a harder fuel used in the iron and steel industries. Inhaling pet coke can contribute to serious respiratory health problems, particularly for individuals who suffer from heart and lung disease and asthma. The health effects of met coke are similar. Additionally, met coke is believed to be a toxic agent and a carcinogen.

The Attorney General’s complaint follows an Oct. 30 referral from the IEPA after its inspections revealed all the materials at Beemsterboer were stored in the open, exposed to the elements and without any covering or retaining structures to keep the materials from blowing into nearby neighborhoods. According to the IEPA, the only dust control on site was a single water truck. The company apparently had discontinued use of a spraying system and another method to control dust emissions.

Along with air pollution violations, Madigan’s complaint includes seven additional counts that allege permit violations, the failure to have in place a plan to control dust from leaving the site and the failure to submit timely emissions reports and pay permit fees. In each count of the complaint, the Attorney General seeks a civil penalty of $50,000 for each violation of the Illinois Environmental Protection Act and other regulations, and an additional civil penalty of $10,000 for each day of violation.

The City of Chicago is seeking remedies and civil penalties for alleged violations of its Municipal Code, including handling and storing materials susceptible to becoming windborne without taking reasonable precautions, illegal disposal of waste and nuisance in connection with a business.

Assistant Attorneys General Evan McGinley and Ryan Rudich are handling the case for Madigan’s Environmental Enforcement Bureau. Senior Counsel George Theophilos is handling the case for the City of Chicago Department of Law.

A Bipartisan group of 14 U.S. Senators releases statement on Iran Sanctions

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on A Bipartisan group of 14 U.S. Senators releases statement on Iran Sanctions

Bipartisan Statement on Iran Sanctions

WASHINGTON, DC – A bipartisan group of 14 U.S. Senators today released the following statement regarding the Senate’s consideration of Iran sanctions legislation:

“A nuclear weapons capable Iran presents a grave threat to the national security interest of the United States and its allies, and we are committed to preventing Iran from acquiring this capability.  We will work together to reconcile Democratic and Republican proposals over the coming weeks and to pass bipartisan Iran sanctions legislation as soon as possible.”

The statement was signed by Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Charles Schumer (D-NY), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Bob Casey (D-PA), John Cornyn (R-TX), Chris Coons (D-DE), Susan Collins (R-ME), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Bob Corker (R-TN) and John McCain (R-AZ).

Minority parents fear for kids Online

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Minority parents fear for kids Online

Asian, Hispanic and black parents are more concerned than whites about online safety issues

EVANSTON, IL – Nearly all parents agree — when their children go online, stranger danger is their biggest safety concern, followed closely by exposure to pornography, violent content and bullying, according to a collaborative study between researchers at Northwestern University and Microsoft Research.

But, a parent’s level of concern for these and other online safety issues varies depending on their racial and ethnic background, researchers said.

Here are some highlights from the study, which was published in the journal Policy & Internet:

  • White parents are the least concerned about all online safety issues.
  • Parents of Asian and Hispanic descent are significantly more likely to be concerned about all online safety-related issues.
  • Black parents are significantly more concerned than white parents about children meeting harmful strangers or being exposed to pornography, but not about other issues.

“Policies that aim to protect children online talk about parents’ concerns, assuming parents are this one homogenous group,” said Eszter Hargittai, co-author of the study. “When you take a close look at demographic backgrounds of parents, concerns are not uniform across population groups.”

Hargittai is Delaney Family Professor in the department of communication studies at Northwestern. The other co-author of the study is danah boyd, a principal researcher at Microsoft Research and a research assistant professor at New York University.

The results of the study come from a U.S. nationally representative online survey of parents and guardians with children ages 10 to 14 in their households. More than 1,000 parents took part in the survey in the summer of 2011.

Data collected included gender, race/ethnicity, age, education, household income, region/metro area, political ideology, religiosity, and the age and gender of the children.

Parents were presented with five specific scenarios their child could encounter online. Answer options ranged from “not at all concerned” to “extremely concerned” on a five-point scale. Here’s how parents ranked their level of concern with these scenarios:

  1. Child meeting a stranger who means to do harm (4.3/5)
  2. Child being exposed to pornographic content (4.2/5)
  3. Child being exposed to violent content (3.7/5)
  4. Child being a victim of online bullying (3.5/5)
  5. Child bullying another child online (2.4/5)

Other interesting results from the study:

  • Metropolitan status: Urban parents tend to be more concerned than suburban or rural parents.
  • Education: College-educated parents exhibit lower levels of fear regarding stranger danger than parents with less education.
  • Income: Having a higher income is related to lower fears when it comes to exposure to pornography, being bullied or being a bully.
  • Political ideology: Parents of liberal persuasion are less concerned than moderates or conservatives about pornography, but more concerned about their child becoming a bully.
  • Gender/age of child: Parents of daughters and of younger children are more concerned than parents of sons when it comes to meeting a stranger and exposure to violent content.
  • Parents’ gender/religion: A parent’s gender or religious beliefs have little effect on levels of concern.

Socioeconomic status factors seemed to have some influence on parents’ levels of concern, but they seemed less important when also taking into account race and ethnicity, the researchers said.

“Our study highlights how parental concern differs by demographic factors, notably race and ethnicity,” boyd said. “This raises significant questions about policies intended to empower parents. Which parents — and, in turn, which youth — are being empowered by the interventions being developed?”

NORTHWESTERN NEWS: www.northwestern.edu/newscenter/

Black On Black Love to make Thanksgiving joyful for hundreds of needy families

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Black On Black Love to make Thanksgiving joyful for hundreds of needy families

Anti-Crime Organization’s donation of food baskets will feed families from Chicago’s poorest neighborhoods, churches and social service agencies

CHICAGO, IL – Black on Black Love will make Thanksgiving more joyful for more than 400 needy families when it donates food baskets of turkey, dressing, canned goods and more during its Annual Holiday Food Give- A-Way.

This mission of love, now in its 17th year, will be held in the Great Hall of the new Kennedy King College at 63rd and Halsted on Tuesday, November 26  from 9AM to 1PM.

In making the announcement, Frances Wright, CEO of Black on Black Love declared, “Making the basket giveaways even more festive is that they are being given in Black on Black Love’s spirit of compassion that has made this one of Chicago’s most anticipated holiday celebrations.”

Recipients of the Thanksgiving food blessings come from some of Chicago’s most impoverished and crime-plagued communities as well as from area churches, schools and community-based organizations.  Among the beneficiaries will be those throughout the city of Chicago who have been identified by various churches and community organizations.   Others who will receive these “love baskets” include Resurrection Lutheran Church, Kennedy-King College students, New Zion Ministries Missionary Group, My Sister’s Keeper, Godfather Male Mentoring Program and King of Glory Church.

The food blessings consist of a scrumptious full-course Thanksgiving feast including a 10-12 pound turkey, stuffing mix, cranberry sauce, canned sweet potatoes, corn, green beans, one dozen eggs, dinner rolls, bread and an assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables. The sumptuous food blessings all add up to make up a well-balanced holiday meal to feed a family of six.

Presiding over the event will be Frances Wright, who will be joined by the emcee of the event, Mrs. Henrietta Leak of Leak & Sons Funeral Homes, who will help distribute the basket/blessings.

As part of the festivities, CEO Wright will host a special ceremony that will feature performances by the Black on Black Love Inspirational Choir and words of love from Park Manor Church, Pastor Jimmy Allen Thomas-New Zion Ministries and Pastor Quentin Forrest-Anointed Word Praise Ministry.

Making the event possible are the following generous and compassionate sponsor/friends, which support Black on Black Love’s mission of love:

Black United Fund of Illinois

Coalition of Black Trade Unionists

Kenwood Liquors

King of Glory Church


Leak & Sons Funeral Homes

Resurrection Lutheran Church

Aldi Foods

Meijer Foods

Terri Gardner

Ms. Felicia Browne

Mrs. Marguerite Compton

Gwen Duncan James

Seaway Bank & Trust

SCR Medical Transportation

REO Movers

Visionary Friends

Akers Packaging Service Group

CEO Wright explained that the holiday basket give- a-way is one of many initiatives sponsored by Black on Black Love, which is dedicated to spreading the message of increasing the peace and ceasing the violence through love, respect and self-discipline. Under its banner is the program My Sister’s Keeper, whose mission is to transition formerly incarcerated females back into society in a productive way. The agencies’ overall mission is to uplift the less fortunate and give hope to those seeking a better way, including those who have been incarcerated.

Black on Black Love is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization founded in 1983 by Mr. Edward G. Gardner, former CEO of Soft Sheen Products, Inc. Frances Wright is the CEO and Spencer Leak, Sr., of Leak & Sons Funeral Home, is Board Chairman.

For more information please call (773) 978-0868; e-mail the agency at info@bobl.org or Visit their website at http://www.bobl.org.

Governor Quinn and Mayor Emanuel Announce Assisted Living Concepts Moving Headquarters to Chicago

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Governor Quinn and Mayor Emanuel Announce Assisted Living Concepts Moving Headquarters to Chicago

Company to bring roughly 100 jobs from Wisconsin to new downtown location

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that Assisted Living Concepts LLC (ALC), a leading provider of senior housing with more than 200 assisted living residences across the United States, will move its corporate headquarters from Menomonee Falls, Wis., to Chicago by the end of the year.

The company, which was represented by commercial real estate firm Studley, has leased 25,265 square feet at 330 North Wabash in Chicago. Beginning in December 2013, the new space will house ALC’s roughly 100 corporate employees, including its executive team.

“The state’s enduring advantages as a home for companies of all sizes are benefiting its taxpayers and people who seek work,” said Governor Quinn. “Employers who want to be at the epicenter of North American business are driving economic growth throughout the state.”

“As mayor, I am focused on making Chicago the most business-friendly city in the nation, and I am thrilled to welcome ALC as the newest member of our vibrant and engaged business community,” said Mayor Emanuel.

“Chicago is a world-class city for business, with a large and diverse workforce to support ALC’s future growth and easy access to transportation options that will enable us to better serve our residents and employees in communities across the country,” said ALC CEO Jack Callison Jr. “We are looking to hire many talented professionals as the company enters this new growth phase, and I am confident that Chicago is the right place to achieve the ambitious goals we have set for ALC’s next chapter.”

Chicago offers companies such as ALC a significant pipeline of healthcare employees, with area colleges and universities enrolling nearly 60,000 students and granting more than 24,000 degrees in healthcare related fields annually. The city’s more than 20,000 healthcare-related establishments and 491,000 healthcare-related employees generated $45 billion in healthcare-related GDP in 2012. Chicago also has the second highest employment of any metro area in the U.S. in hospitals, nursing care facilities, and other health practitioners.

ALC is eligible for tax credits under the Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) program, administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic

Opportunity (DCEO). The tax credits, based on job creation, can be used against corporate income taxes to be paid for up to 10 years.

“With its business-friendly policies, Illinois is able to attract companies in high-growth industries and keep ahead of changes in the economy. The result is a stronger and more diverse employment base,” said DCEO Director Adam Pollet.

Under Governor Quinn’s leadership, the state has identified and recruited companies in dynamic sectors such as healthcare and technology. There also has been a focus on securing new corporate headquarters. The state has enlarged its base of private sector jobs by more than 3 percent, or 216,000 positions, since January 2010, when job growth returned to Illinois following two years of declines during the recession.

Investments such as Mayor Emanuel’s $251 million commitment to help prepare City College students for careers in healthcare are also helping facilitate growth. The industry is projected to add 56,000 employees in the region over the next decade, outpacing overall employment growth.

Increasing the region’s position as a center for headquarters is a key component of the city’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs, called for by Mayor Emanuel and currently being implemented by World Business Chicago (WBC). WBC and its board members worked closely with ALC to illustrate Chicago’s competitive advantages.

“A Chicago location makes great sense for Assisted Living Concepts, as the city offers unmatched access to the world and to highly-skilled talent, including an especially strong healthcare services workforce,” said WBC President & CEO Jeff Malehorn. “We welcome ALC to Chicago’s business community and look forward to working together for years to come.”

Formerly a part of Extendicare (EHSI), ALC formed its own organization in 2006 and went public soon after. ALC currently operates more than 200 assisted living communities across 19 states and employs over 4,500 people. In July 2013, ALC was acquired by TPG Capital (TPG), a leading global private investment firm.

ABC 7 Chicago presents a Special Edition of “Heart & Soul,” Hosted by Karen Jordan & Hosea Sanders, Saturday, December 7th at 6 P.M.

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on ABC 7 Chicago presents a Special Edition of “Heart & Soul,” Hosted by Karen Jordan & Hosea Sanders, Saturday, December 7th at 6 P.M.

CHICAGO, IL – ABC 7’s Karen Jordan and Hosea Sanders will host the next installment of HEART & SOUL, a series of specials that taps into Chicago’s vibrant African American community; airing Saturday, December 7th at 6:00 pm.  Evelyn Holmes, Leah Hope, Charles Thomas, and Val Warner also contribute reports to this edition.  An encore presentation will air Sunday, December 21st at 2:00 pm on ABC 7.

HEART & SOUL is the winner of a Chicago Emmy Award and an Illinois Broadcasters Association’s “Best Public Affairs Program” award.

HEART & SOUL shines the spotlight on founder and choreographer of Red Clay Dance Company Vershawn Sanders Ward. Ms. Sanders Ward holds a Masters of Fine Arts in Dance from New York University and was the first to receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from Columbia College Chicago. Red Clay Dance Company is an all-female dance troupe that also teaches children to dance in the Bronzeville community  — hoping to inspire the next generation of performers.

HEART & SOUL sits down with former model Tondalah Stroud who founded the cosmetic line F.O.G. – which is sold online and inside the company’s flagship location at the River Oaks Mall, in Calumet City. The show takes an intimate look at how Stroud is growing her line of cosmetics all while giving deserving women an opportunity to transform themselves inside and out through her non-profit organization “Beauty for Ashes.”

Actor, producer, musician, heartthrob and Chicago native Mel Jackson is back in town and Heart & Soul catches up with him to talk about his new sitcom.  The Hyde Park High School Alum gives viewers a look behind the scenes during filming of the Chicago-based sitcom.  Jackson and his creative partner Angela McGee (Sister Sister, Living Single), talk about their Purposed One Entertainment company and how they have teamed up to bring Hollywood back to Chicago with their new collaboration.

Next up — HEART & SOUL takes a trip to the Chicago History Museum for the, “Inspiring Beauty:  50 years of Ebony Fashion Fair” exhibit. The exhibit spotlights the phenomenal fashions brought to life thanks to the late Producer and Director Eunice Johnson.

Then, HEART & SOUL takes a look at one of the people behind the special events in Chicago, from the Taste of Chicago to the Columbus Day Parade.  Michelle T. Boone, Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, helps orchestrate the almost 2,000 programs and events Chicagoans and visitors alike have come to enjoy.   Bonne gives details of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new Chicago Cultural Plan which is destined to become the most significant art program enhancement the city has seen in 25 years.

Photographer John H. White has accomplished so many things in his life, but his road to success started at 13 when he received his first camera. After serving his country with the U.S. Marines and rising to the rank of Sergeant, all while taking photos, White then worked as a photographer for both the Chicago Daily News and the Chicago Sun-Times. HEART & SOUL offers a glimpse of the life and work of Chicago’s legendary Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer.

What did the Peninsula hotel, St. Charles Country club, the Tower Club, and the Chicago Yacht Club all have in common? Chef Kristopher Murray. Murray, who combined his love of food and academia, sits down with HEART & SOUL to talk about the Washburne Culinary Institute and his new position as Executive chef and Executive Director. The Washburne Culinary Institute, located in the disadvantaged Englewood neighborhood, has a student kitchen and restaurant, where his mostly African American students, have an opportunity to learn the business. Murray’s goal for all 225 students is to push them to excel in high-end kitchens like his other successful alums.

HEART & SOUL is featured on-demand at abc7chicago.com.

HEART & SOUL is produced by Holly Grisham and Rubye Wilson Lane.

TimeLine Theatre Company extends Hit production of The Normal Heart, now playing 9 additional performances through December 29 at Stage 773

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on TimeLine Theatre Company extends Hit production of The Normal Heart, now playing 9 additional performances through December 29 at Stage 773

Chicago, IL — TimeLine Theatre Company announces 9 additional performances of its acclaimed production of The Normal Heart by Larry Kramer, directed by Nick Bowling. Originally scheduled to close on December 22, The Normal Heart will now run through December 29, 2013, plus three additional Tuesday performances at 7:30 pm on December 3, December 10 and December 17, at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. Tickets to newly added performances are on sale starting today.

The Normal Heart features an all-star Chicago cast led by acclaimed actor and director David Cromer as Ned Weeks, Mary Beth Fisher as Dr. Emma Brookner, Patrick Andrews as Felix Turner and Marc Grapey as Ben Weeks, with Stephen Cone (David/Hiram Keebler/Examining Doctor/Ensemble), Joel Gross (Bruce Niles), Nik Kourtis (Donner/Grady/Ensemble), Stephen Rader (Mickey Marcus) and TimeLine Associate Artist Alex Weisman (Tommy Boatwright).

One of the most highly anticipated productions of Chicago’s fall theatre season, since opening in early November, TimeLine’s The Normal Heart has been listed among the best-reviewed plays running in Chicago, according to theatreinchicago.com. The Chicago Tribune called it “another formidable TimeLine production,” the Chicago Sun-Times wrote that “in this fast, furious and impassioned rendering … Kramer’s drama seems only to have gained in power,” and The Huffington Post called The Normal Heart “one of those rare instances where powerful, necessary playwriting meets a rock-solid production committed to telling this story in an unapologetic, emotionally raw way.”

The new performance schedule of The Normal Heart is Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m. (12/3, 12/10 and 12/17 only), Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. (except no performance 12/25), Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. (except no performance 11/28), Fridays at 8 p.m. (also 4 p.m. on 11/29 and 12/27), Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. The production must close on Sunday, December 29, 2013.

Ticket prices are $37 (Tuesday – Friday), $47 (Saturday) or $50 (Sunday). Student discount is $10 off the regular ticket price with valid ID. Discounted group rates are also available. For more information and to purchase, call the Stage 773 Box Office at 773.327.5252 or visit timelinetheatre.com.

Only TimeLine FlexPass subscribers are offered priority access to tickets to The Normal Heart and TimeLine’s entire 2013-14 season. FlexPass subscriptions are now on sale, priced from $70 to $198.

For more information and to purchase, call (773) 281-TIME (8463) or visit timelinetheatre.com.

Set at the height of the public and private indifference to the AIDS plague in the early 1980s, The Normal Heart is a searing drama that follows a passionate activist, portrayed in TimeLine’s production by Cromer, as he leads the fight to awaken the world to the crisis. Along the way he, and the community he leads into battle, must face the deeply held fears that led so many to remain silent for too long.


SUNDAY SCHOLARS PANEL DISCUSSION featuring guest speakers with expertise and experience related to the themes of The Normal Heart, on Sunday 12/1 from 4:40-5:40 p.m. (times approximate). This discussion takes place on World AIDS Day and is presented in partnership with the AIDS Foundation of Chicago. Information about guest speakers will be posted at timelinetheatre.com.

PRE-SHOW DISCUSSION with a TimeLine Company Member and the production dramaturg on Wednesday 12/4 from 6:30 – 7 p.m.

BOOK CLUB DISCUSSION with a TimeLine Company Member and the production dramaturg on Sunday 12/8 from 12:30 – 1:30 pm. Read selected excerpts of works by author, playwright and activist Larry Kramer in advance and then join for a group discussion of his work.

POST-SHOW DISCUSSION with a TimeLine Company Member, the production dramaturg, and members of the cast, on Thursday 12/12.

COMPANY MEMBER DISCUSSION with TimeLine’s Company Members, the collaborative team of artists who choose TimeLine’s programming and guide the company’s mission, on Sunday 12/15 from 4:40 – 5:10 p.m. (times approximate).

Further details about all discussions are available at timelinetheatre.com/normal_heart/events.htm


In honor of World AIDS Day (December 1) and the subject matter of The Normal Heart, at the conclusion of all performances from November 20 through December 8, 2013, members of the cast are inviting audience members to make a contribution, large or small, to Season of Concern. All proceeds will benefit Season of Concern, which raises funds to provide care for those in the Chicago theater community afflicted with AIDS-related illnesses, other catastrophic illness or a health-related emergency or event. Cast member Stephen Rader is the executive director of Season of Concern.


The Normal Heart is running at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. Stage 773 is located one-half block west of the corner of Belmont and Racine and immediately east of Theater Wit in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood. The theater is accessible via the CTA El stop at Belmont (Red/Brown/Purple lines). CTA bus #77-Belmont stops at Racine. Valet parking is available for $10 and there is also limited free and metered street parking nearby. Visit timelinetheatre.com for complete directions and parking information. Stage 773 is accessible for people with disabilities.

Production Staff

The production staff for The Normal Heart includes Brian Sidney Bembridge (Scenic and Lighting Design), Alex Wren Meadows (Costume Design), Michael Stanfill (Projections Design), Andrew Hansen (Sound Design), Maren Robinson (Dramaturgy), Linsey Page Morton (Assistant Director), Eva Breneman (Dialect Coach), Ana Espinosa (Stage Manager), Carrie Taylor (Production Assistant), Austin Pettinger (Associate Costume Designer) and Mac Vaughey (Master Electrician).

About TimeLine Theatre Company

TimeLine Theatre Company, named one of the nation’s top 10 emerging professional theatres (American Theatre Wing, founder of the Tony Awards®), Best Theatre in Chicago (Chicago magazine, 2011) and the nation’s theater “Company of the Year” (The Wall Street Journal, 2010), was founded in April 1997 with a mission to present stories inspired by history that connect with today’s social and political issues. Over its first 16 seasons, TimeLine presented 55 productions, including nine world premieres and 19 Chicago premieres, and launched the Living History Education Program, which brings the company’s mission to life for students in Chicago Public Schools. Recipient of the Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence and the Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award from the Association for Strategic Planning, TimeLine has received 50 Jeff Awards, including an award for Outstanding Production 10 times during 14 seasons of eligibility.

TimeLine kicked off its 2013-14 season with a hit production of Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun, which received 4 stars from the Chicago Tribune, has played to numerous sold-out houses and was extended three additional weeks through December 7. TimeLine’s fall season also boasted the successful remount of the company’s 2010 hit To Master the Art by William Brown and Doug Frew, directed by William Brown, presented by the Chicago Commercial Collective and Broadway in Chicago, at the Broadway Playhouse.

Still to come this season is the Midwest premiere of The How and the Why by Sarah Treem, directed by Keira Fromm and running January 28 – April 6, 2014 (press opening 2/6 at 7:30 p.m.), and the Chicago premiere of the musical Juno, book by Joseph Stein, music and lyrics by Marc Blitzstein, based on the play Juno and the Paycock by Sean O’Casey, directed by Nick Bowling with musical direction by Doug Peck and Elizabeth Doran and running April 23 – July 27, 2014 (press opening 5/1 at 7:30 p.m.), both at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago.

TimeLine is led by Artistic Director PJ Powers, Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman and Board President Cindy Giacchetti. Company members are Nick Bowling, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Lara Goetsch, Juliet Hart, Mildred Marie Langford, Mechelle Moe, David Parkes, PJ Powers, Maren Robinson and Benjamin Thiem.

Major supporters of TimeLine Theatre include Alphawood Foundation, The Crown Family, Forum Fund at The Chicago Community Trust, MacArthur Fund for the Arts and Culture at Prince, The Pauls Foundation, Polk Bros. Foundation and The Shubert Foundation. TimeLine is a member of the League of Chicago Theatres, Theatre Communications Group and the Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce.

Lt. Gov. Simon to survey storm damage in Gifford, Brookport; Call for donations to support recovery

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Lt. Gov. Simon to survey storm damage in Gifford, Brookport; Call for donations to support recovery

GIFFORD – Illinois Lt. Governor Sheila Simon on Friday will survey tornado damage in the towns of Gifford and Brookport and call for donations to assist recovery going into the holiday season. Simon participated this week in the Help on the Homefront telethon that raised more than $786,000 for the American Red Cross, and more support is needed. As of Thursday, Governor Pat Quinn had declared 15 counties disaster areas, and teams are conducting assessments to seek federal assistance.

“The cleanup and rebuilding in these rural communities will not happen overnight, and we need to all lend a hand,” said Simon. “I encourage everyone to dig into their pockets and help support the tremendous task ahead.”


EVENT: Survey of Gifford storm recovery

TIME: 10:15 a.m.

LOCATION: Gifford Fire Station, 404 N. Main St., Gifford

EVENT: Survey of Brookport storm recovery

TIME: 3:45 p.m.

LOCATION: First Baptist Church, 700 Pell St., Brookport

National Youth Baseball League appoints new leadership

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on National Youth Baseball League appoints new leadership

Michael E. Mayden (The Coach) from Chicago, Illinois has been appointed the National Commissioner and James Meszoros Sr., from Bridgeport, Connecticut the Assistant National Commissioner of the Metropolitan Junior Baseball League (MJBL), effective January 1, 2014, for a two-year term, 2014 & 2015.

MJBL was founded by Dr. William Forrester in Richmond Virginia in 1966. The non-profit organization is acknowledged as one of the oldest African American youth baseball leagues in the country. It was conceived during the days of segregation when there were very limited opportunities for African-American youth to participate in organized baseball. Today MJBL is a National organization that offers baseball, educational and cultural enrichment opportunities to youth of all nationalities who desire to participate.

Coach Mayden is noted for his dedicated work, instructing baseball for youth in the Chicago area for over thirty plus years and as a civic leader. Mayden’s plan is to make MJBL a household name for all baseball enthusiasts before his tenure is completed. Our agenda is to continue promoting the MJBL National Tournament that annually brings over eight hundred youth baseball players from over twenty States between the ages of 8-19 years old. “I would like to focus on helping develop and promote the advancement of African American and youth baseball players on all levels of this game from the little league, high school and college on to the major leagues (said Coach Mayden a former MLB scout)”.

Coach Mayden will hit the ground running as he will oversee the MJBL East vs. West All Star Game January 18th and 19th in Augusta GA. Paine College, a Historically Black College/ University (HBCU) will host this event during the MLK Holiday weekend. MJBL’s annual East vs. West All Star game is named in recognition of the accomplishments of the players from the Negro Leagues. Then preparations for 24th Annual MJBL Inner City Classic and Black World Series will continue.

The Classic will be hosted by the City of Richmond, Virginia during the week of August 5th – 10th, 2014. The Classic will feature teams from all over the Unites States and the Bahamas. Mookie Wilson, former outfielder for the New York Mets and Tom McCraw, former member of the Chicago White Sox will once again serve as our official host and spokesman for the National Tournament.

MJBL’s chairman of the board and former Commissioner of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and the Eastern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (EIAC) said; “ We are fortunate to have an individual coming from Chicago that possess the knowledge and expertise that Coach Michael brings to our league. I believe Coach Michael can really make a difference in a time when our youth need so much guidance both on and off of the baseball field”.

Coach Mayden will be available for interviews upon request: Michael E. Mayden (The Coach) (773) 744-1040 cell * E-mail: coachmayden@aol.com

Web Site: www.mem247.com

Black Parents: This Is What Our Kids Need to Succeed at School

Posted by Admin On November - 22 - 2013 Comments Off on Black Parents: This Is What Our Kids Need to Succeed at School

New America Media

LOS ANGELES — The State of California should finance programs specifically designed to improve the academic performance of African-American students, and community activists need a media platform to mobilize more black parents to join in on efforts to improve their schools.

Those recommendations topped a list of school funding priorities laid out by African-American parents at an education forum organized for parents and the black media in Los Angeles last week.

The comments on education finance were in response to California’s recently enacted Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) which will bring increased state funding to school districts over the next eight years. Under LCFF, the state is to provide the greatest funding increases to schools in low-income communities and those with large numbers of students who are learning English as a second language.

A number of the participants at the forum – organized by New America Media and held last week at the Baldwin Hills Library – said the state should also provide additional funding to improve the English-language skills of many black students.

Los Angeles Sentinel columnist Larry Aubry, noting the academic achievement gaps between blacks and whites, said such a program would help African-American students.

“People don’t understand that black kids are held back simply because of the way they speak,” he said.

Marian Thomas, a parent at the forum, agreed that many black students need additional language instruction. She cited the work of Ernie Smith, a linguistics scholar at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science in Los Angeles. In his books and research, said Thomas, Smith shows how enslaved Africans incorporated English vocabulary into African-based syntax — a pattern of speaking that continues to this day.

Some black organizations in Los Angeles have already supported the call for classroom instruction to address what some consider a linguistic divide. For example, the Los Angeles-based Black Community, Clergy and Labor Alliance (BCCLA), an organization whose members include representatives from the local chapters of the NAACP and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), commented on the issue in a recent statement about equity in education:

Black students “have unique linguistic and cultural histories and experiences that must be understood and accepted through the implementation of culturally relevant and responsive pedagogy,” said BCCLA.

Yolande Beckles, a member of the California Title 1 Parent Union, also called for school district and state action that would focus attention on improving education for African Americans.

“There is no legislation that specifically benefits African-American students,” she said. “We have to advocate for legislation for our community.”

Beckles said there is a small number of black “parent professionals” who are advocates for African-American youth, and that a broader movement would be needed to achieve change.

Rashunda Rene, director the Los Angeles-based Committed to Uplifting Single Parents (CUSP), said she would like to take part in a communications campaign to inform and mobilize black parents.

A lack of parental involvement at school and the failure of some black parents to hold their children accountable for their behavior are the primary reasons why a disproportionate number of black males are expelled or suspended from school, said Jerry Delaney, another parent at the forum.

“Many of us are sending our kids to school undisciplined,” he said.

Delaney said he was a troubled student as a boy until his mother discovered negative patterns and corrected them.

“It all starts in the home,” he said. “If you stress education at home and provide discipline at home, students will do well in school.”

However, Luis South, a member of the Los Angeles-based Black Parent Union, said school districts also bear some responsibility.

“We need people (school personnel) with proper training and understanding” of black and Latino boys, he said.

Another participant, Zella Knight, said the new funding formula would only help improve the academic performance of black students if African-American parents engaged their local school district officials.
“It’s just not going to happen without accountability,” she said.

The funding formula law requires school districts to involve parents in decision-making on how additional funds are spent. However, Knight and some other forum participants said black parents must be more organized if they are to monitor school officials and serve as more effective advocates for their children.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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