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Archive for April 28th, 2014

NAACP Will Not Honor Clippers Owner Donald Sterling at Los Angeles Branch Event

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on NAACP Will Not Honor Clippers Owner Donald Sterling at Los Angeles Branch Event

The Civil Rights organization says it will rescind honoring  Sterling at its upcoming Los Angeles branch event due to remarks attributed to Sterling in a TMZ tape, calling the remarks  “outrageous”

Baltimore, MD – The National NAACP released the following statement in response to the remarks attributed to Clippers owner Donald Sterling:

From Lorraine C. Miller, NAACP Interim President and CEO:

“Let me make it clear, the NAACP will not be honoring Mr. Sterling at the upcoming Los Angeles branch event and we have strongly urged our Los Angeles unit to take the necessary steps to rescind the previous award they bestowed on him.”

Miller continued, “The remarks attributed to Mr. Sterling are outrageous and remind us that racism is alive and well at every socioeconomic level.  With the election of President Obama, many were sold the idea that the United States would be instantly transformed into a post racial society and racism would be eviscerated.  People who bought that idea were sold wolf tickets.

As a nation, we must ask ourselves if we are living up to the obligations of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Constitutional that require equality in opportunity for all people regardless of the color of their skin. If we cannot answer in the affirmative, we must redouble our efforts to ensure this goal is reached.

If the adage that silence means acceptance, the worst thing our country can do in the face of bigotry is remain quiet.  We must stand up, speak out and call attention to a real problem.

From Roslyn M. Brock, NAACP Chairman of the Board of Directors:

“The current political climate in our nation has set the stage for the blatant bigotry we are seeing from the likes of public figures like Donald Sterling, Ted Nugent, Cliven Bundy and Phil Robertson.  As Justice Sotomayer acknowledged in her dissent in Schuette v. BAMN, racism cannot be wished away and must be confronted.  The NAACP will remain vigilant in pointing out and fighting against racism in all its forms to ensure it does not infect the next generation of Americans.

“If these allegations are proven true, we are extremely disappointed in Mr. Sterling”: Alice Huffman, President of the NAACP California State Conference

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on “If these allegations are proven true, we are extremely disappointed in Mr. Sterling”: Alice Huffman, President of the NAACP California State Conference

Huffman’s statement to alleged statements by Clippers owner

Sacramento, CA – The California State Conference of the NAACP has issued the following statement in response to the alleged remarks by Clippers owner Donald Sterling:

From Alice Huffman, President of the NAACP California State Conference

“If these allegations are proven true, we are extremely disappointed in Mr. Sterling,” stated Alice Huffman, President of the NAACP California State Conference.  “Recent remarks like these, and those of Cliven Bundy, remind us that racism is not a footnote of our past, but a reality of our present that we must confront head on.”

Huffman continued, “For 105 years, the NAACP has fought against the culture bigotry that leads to the comments like those we heard on the recording, and as public response to these remarks has shown, we have made significant progress.

As the investigation is in progress, we urge the LA Branch of the NAACP to withdraw Donald Sterling from the honoree list at its upcoming Gala. We also suggest that African Americans and Latinos should honor his request and not attend the games.”

“If true, these are very hurtful remarks and Mr. Sterling, whose team talents and fan base is majority minority, should offer an apology to Californians.

At the conclusion of the investigation into the alleged comments, if true, we seek further redress from Mr. Sterling.”

Inequality and the 1 Percent Rule

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Inequality and the 1 Percent Rule

By William Spriggs

In what should be considered standing logic on its end, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this week that while public colleges have an interest in having a racially diverse student body, nonetheless, the racial majority of a state can vote to remove racial diversity as a goal. This is a radical and activist reinterpretation of the Constitution, since by strict construction, the 14th Amendment had been added to explicitly limit white majority action to deny full legal protection to the newly freed slaves and their descendants. The purpose was to limit majority rule from becoming mob rule, continuing a legacy of inequality.

Most disturbing, this ruling comes as our nation’s need for success in having a diverse skilled workforce is increasing. The majority of babies born this year are children of color. A part of the reason our nation’s middle class is seeing other countries incomes catch up to them is because the education advantage of Americans is shrinking. To keep pace, America must find ways to educate all its children.

Earlier this month, high school seniors received letters accepting or rejecting them from their dream schools. The selective institutions now receive thousands of applications for each available slot. The University of Michigan (the school at the heart of the Supreme Court case) received nearly 40,000 applicants and accepted about 16,000.  Last year, the difference between the average SAT section score of the 2014 freshman class and those who were rejected was 672 compared to 642.

Clearly, many of those rejected differed little from those accepted; there are more qualified applicants than slots. So, the challenge for schools like Michigan is in putting together a class among virtually equal applicants.

Given its history as the winningest program in college football history, we can be assured that playing football will continue to be a consideration. Rejecting too many football players would interrupt a pipeline of talent that would be hard to re-establish. So, it is among all students. When numbers dwindle, the relevance of the school in that community declines. With a rising share of Black and Latino students nationally, Michigan needs a lifeline to recruiting in those communities.  But this ruling lets football talent remain a criteria for admission to Michigan, while dismissing the national need for a deep bench of engineering talent.

But, beyond the state of Michigan, the court’s ruling would let voters in Mississippi and Alabama return to segregated universities. Absent the countervailing weight of court action, southern public K-12 education has already gone from the most integrated in America to return to its segregated past at an alarming rate. Justice Sonia Sotomayor, in her dissenting argument, laid out the difference between turning a blind eye to racial inequality and pretending that disparate outcomes are race neutral.

The Supreme Court has ruled earlier that Congress cannot limit the ability of the wealthy to donate to campaigns. So the majority can vote to limit minority representation when it comes to college and pathways to the middle class, but the majority through their representatives cannot infringe on the rights of the 1 percent minority to control the political process? This apparent schizophrenia, however, is totally consistent with the sick form of American plutocracy.

Plutocracy in America is rooted in the American South, where the wealth of the few was protected by state governments and racism was used to control the masses. The Supreme Court appears to protect majority rule, but only when it would cement a sense of white privilege-giving the masses a sense that the political establishment is responding to their will. But it must protect the 1% from that same majority or else, democracy would be mob rule.

While the U.S. economy has grown as well as other nations, America’s unequal growth pattern means the middle class of America is not keeping pace with the rest of the world.
For instance, since 2000, median incomes have gone up by 19.7 percent in Great Britain and Canada, but only 0.3 percent in America. The reason is straightforward: In other countries the effect of democracy are governments where the rich pay higher taxes and people who are poor get much more help. The intent of plutocracy is to prevent that.

Follow Spriggs on Twitter: @WSpriggs. Contact: Amaya Smith-Tune Acting Director, Media Outreach AFL-CIO 202-637-5142

Topinka: More than 450 Local Leaders Learn to Follow the Money Series Draws Participants from 64 Counties

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Topinka: More than 450 Local Leaders Learn to Follow the Money Series Draws Participants from 64 Counties

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka announced that 458 local leaders from 64 counties this week participated in her office’s three-day, seven-city statewide Follow the Money Series aimed at rooting out fraud and making government more transparent.

Hosted in partnership with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Illinois CPA Society, the half-day Follow the Money workshops offered presentations detailing best government practices and what community leaders should look for in reviewing budgets and auditing financial records.

More information about the Series, including the CPA Society’s presentation, is available at illinoiscomptroller.com.

“If you follow the money you’re going to know where there’s trouble,” Topinka said. “I was overwhelmed by the response from leaders across the state and in their interest in rooting our fraud and delivering better government. By teaming with the FBI and the CPA Society, we’ve armed local leaders with new tools to identify wrongdoing and protect public dollars.

“The bottom line is that the more set of eyes we have watching government, the more accountable it will be to taxpayers – and that’s what Follow the Money is all about.”

The Follow the Money Series included workshops in Rockford, Moline, Peoria, Springfield, Champaign, Edwardsville and Carterville. Participants traveled from 196 cities and represented 303 governmental bodies. Of the 458 participants, 174 were elected leaders.

The Series is part of Topinka’s ongoing effort to make government more transparent and accessible. In launching the state Ledger, she enabled residents to click through everything from the state’s bill backlog numbers to agency budgets and employee salaries. She then launched the Warehouse, a comprehensive database that puts Local Government financial information and tens of thousands of records at a single location for taxpayer review. Most recently, Topinka announced that her Office would include an insert in tax refunds with state spending and bill backlog information. Each of the initiatives was completed using existing resources.

“The Illinois CPA Society was proud to partner with the Comptroller and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to present information about fraud, an issue that the accounting profession takes great strides to detect and prevent,” said Todd Shapiro, President of the Illinois CPA Society. “The workshop series provided local elected officials with new ideas and resources on the importance of financial information reporting and audits and what local officials should look for in selecting an auditor and in audit reports.”

Atty. General Madigan: Chicago man sentenced to six years for criminal mortgage loan modification fraud

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Atty. General Madigan: Chicago man sentenced to six years for criminal mortgage loan modification fraud

CHICAGO, IL — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced a six-year prison sentence for a Chicago man who stole more than $350,000 by preying on desperate homeowners seeking to avoid foreclosure.

Warren Jackson, 44, of Chicago, pled guilty to criminal mortgage rescue fraud before Cook County Circuit Court Judge Mary M. Brosnahan yesterday and was sentenced to six years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

“The defendant preyed on homeowners who were desperate for a lifeline but instead found themselves targets of a criminal,” Madigan said. “Homeowners who were victim to these schemes were left at an even greater risk of losing their homes.”

Jackson orchestrated two mortgage loan modification schemes involving Chicago homeowners. The first scam targeted homeowners at risk of foreclosure, promising to save their homes by negotiating lower mortgage payments with their banks. Jackson collected illegal upfront fees from the homeowners but never followed through on his claims to help reduce homeowners’ mortgage payments, placing the scheme’s victims at even greater risk of foreclosure.

In the second scheme, called a “sale-leaseback” that Jackson alleged would save a homeowner’s home, he used straw buyers to purchase homes from distressed homeowners, sometimes falsely promising them that they could pay rent for a year and then could potentially buy back the property. Jackson also tricked homeowners into unknowingly selling their homes to straw buyers by leading them to believe that they were signing paperwork for a new loan to help them avoid foreclosure. Jackson used the sale-leaseback scheme to transfer title from homeowners to straw buyers for the purpose of stripping the remaining equity from the home. Individual homeowners lost from $70,000 to $150,000 of equity in their homes as a result of the schemes.

Madigan has previously sued Jackson. In December 2010, Madigan filed suit for their illegal operation and solicitation for a Chicago charity, We Stop the Killings, and obtained an injunction in July 2011 that permanently barred Jackson from soliciting, receiving or holding assets for any charitable purpose in the state of Illinois or on behalf of any Illinois-based charity. Prior to that case, Madigan sued and obtained a judgment against Jackson for his involvement in companies W2X Inc., PTU1 Inc., Y2X LLC, and Goldberg Bail-Out Inc. for similar mortgage-related fraud.

Attorney General Madigan has aggressively targeted mortgage-rescue scams illegally charging homeowners upfront fees for rescue services. Madigan has previously filed 50 civil lawsuits against illegal operators and issued over 700 cease-and-desist letters. Madigan urged homeowners who are struggling to stay in their homes to contact her Homeowner Helpline, (866) 544-7151, for guidance on avoiding foreclosure and to seek help from a HUD-certified housing counselor to work out a solution with their lenders.

Assistant Attorneys General Paul Bervid and Anshuman Vaidya handled the case for Madigan’s Financial Crimes Bureau. The case was investigated by Associate Director James S. Dorger of the Attorney General’s Public Integrity Bureau, with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

National Urban League Mobilizes Against Senate Housing Reform Bill as Drafted, Pushes for Affordable Housing Provisions

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on National Urban League Mobilizes Against Senate Housing Reform Bill as Drafted, Pushes for Affordable Housing Provisions

NEW YORK, NY  – In two letters submitted to the Senate Banking Committee this week, the National Urban League, the nation’s largest historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization, warned leaders of serious concerns regarding proposed housing reform legislation and of the organization’s plans to mobilize against it unless it includes provisions ensuring that working and middle- class families have access to affordable home ownership.

In an April 23 letter to Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D- SD) and Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-ID), National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial said their legislation would “radically change” the way most Americans buy homes.  He said the Johnson-Crapo bill would lead to cost increases making home ownership unaffordable for many families who already have “borne the brunt” of the housing crisis as their family wealth was wiped out by foreclosures and plunging home values.

“Most alarming is that the Johnson-Crapo draft measure does not do enough to promote affordable housing for ownership,” Morial wrote.  “This is a fundamental issue that cannot be overlooked, underestimated or relegated to negotiation on the Senate floor.  It needs to be included – now – as a core provision in any housing finance or GSE reform.”

The Senate Banking Committee is expected to vote next week on legislation that could accelerate the already significant post-recession decline in home ownership among communities of color and all working and middle-class communities.  It would wind down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a new agency, the Federal Mortgage Insurance Corporation (FMIC).  The new agency would end the federal affordable housing goals that helped boost the percentage of African American home ownership to a pre-recession all-time high of 50 percent.

But in his letter to the committee leaders, Morial wrote that today’s mortgage market is “disgracefully exclusionary and restrictive.”

Morial noted that the most recent data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) clearly demonstrates that families of color have already been cut out of the housing market and the situation will only worsen if the Johnson-Crapo legislation is enacted.  The HMDA data found that in 2012 there were 1.3 million conventional mortgage loans originated in the United States, but Asian Pacific Islanders received only .2 % or 10,611 of the loans, African Americans received 2.3 % or 29,405 loans and Latinos received 5.3% or 69,217 loans.  Morial wrote that the proposed legislation does not adequately address this ongoing inequity nor does it provide an inclusive way forward for working and middle-class communities to participate in the future housing market.

“In this regard, a key area of concern for us is also the degree to which banks are expected to make loans in underserved communities,” his letter stated.  “Markets can be underserved for a number of reasons – each of which may best be addressed with a different approach.  But eliminating affordable housing goals and expecting the market to correct itself, when history has repeatedly shown us otherwise, exacerbates the emerging dual mortgage finance marketplace that Johnson-Crapo should intentionally be designed to counteract.”

He maintained that the Johnson-Crapo legislation does not take proactive steps to make sure lenders are serving qualified borrowers in all markets, likely causing the housing market to continue to suffer in future years.  “Families of color, expected to represent 7 out of every 10 families formed in the next decade, have homeownership rates that are far below the national average,” Morial wrote.  “The homeownership rates among people in their 30s are at their lowest in a generation, and loans are often more expensive in both rural and urban areas.”

Morial recalled that in 2008, he testified before the Senate Banking Committee about what he dubbed the “Financial Weapon of Mass Deception: the ugly, insidious and concerted effort to blame minority and low-to-moderate income borrowers for the nation’s economic woes.”   That myth, he wrote, is “an enormously damaging and far-reaching affront” that wrongly shifts the culpability for the housing crisis from too much Wall Street greed and too little Washington oversight onto middle-class families on Main Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard.

“These are the citizens who were the primary targets of predatory lending and other practices peddled by Wall Street investors, yet who have also been blamed and exploited in efforts to undercut affordable housing goals and most notably the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA),” Morial wrote.  “While Wall Street investors were the major purchasers and investors of subprime loans – not Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Fannie and Freddie made convenient public scapegoats for the mortgage collapse of 2008.”

While fully supportive of the idea of GSE reform, Morial said, “We are unwavering in the belief that it should be reform – and not retrogression.”  He called the GSEs “the most effective institutions” for providing liquidity to the mortgage market for qualified low-and moderate-income borrowers.

“The National Urban League and its allies cannot support the bill as designated and strongly urges the committee to take full advantage of this opportunity by passing legislation that will help ensure access to affordable mortgage credit for all creditworthy borrowers, while at the same time protecting taxpayers from bearing the cost of a housing downturn,” he wrote. “Maintaining reasonable and measured affordable housing goals for the GSEs will be an important step towards that goal.”

Furthermore, Morial wrote that the National Urban League “intends to mobilize its membership and partners in opposition to this bill – or any subsequent housing finance reform legislation – that does not include affordable housing goals.”

In a follow-up letter submitted to Sens. Johnson and Crapo today, Morial emphasized significant concerns that the Johnson-Crapo bill would essentially replace the housing finance system of today with a costly private sector system that will further exclude many in the working and middle class from homeownership.  “Increased cause for concern,” he wrote, “is that the Johnson-Crapo bill would replace Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with new entities that are required to have 10% first-loss capital from private concerns and have private sector guarantors or insurance.  This private capital scheme could greatly increase the average mortgage cost by at least $1,400 annually to pay for the private capital.  Working families cannot afford this bill.”

Morial also noted that he was not making a commentary on the new mortgage participant issuers and insurers, acknowledging that they are not “inherently bad entities. They are simply charging what private companies charge for risky investments – investments that the government absorbed for 80 years because it considered the reward of a stable homeowner society worth it.  Unfortunately, Johnson-Crapo says it is not.”

Morial urged the Senate to recognize the impact of Johnson-Crapo on the middle class in America and to not make homeownership a luxury reserved for the fortunate few, while all others become renters.

“In these times of wage stagnation, declining numbers of good paying jobs and increasing debt costs for education, shifting the risk and burden of housing finance onto regular working and middle-class families is a bad idea.  We must work toward measures that end – not expand – this trend of increasing costs.  When will we stop asking working and middle-class families to pay for a financial crisis that they did not cause – and instead support their efforts, as we have those of Wall Street, to rebuild?”

The second letter closed with a call for the Senate to consider other options available instead of increasing the annual mortgage cost on working and middle-class families for the benefit of risk and private capital.

“Let’s openly begin to explore those options and have a substantive conversation that leads to responsible action around housing finance and GSE reform – not retrogression,” said Morial.

iette D. Smith-Wilson, lsmithadv@nul.org, 212.558-5433.

About the National Urban League

The National Urban League (www.nul.org) is a historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization dedicated to economic empowerment in historically underserved urban communities. Founded in 1910 and headquartered in New York City, the National Urban League has improved the lives of tens of millions of people nationwide through direct service programs that are implemented locally by its 95 Urban League affiliates in 36 states and the District of Columbia. The organization also conducts public policy research and advocacy activities from its D.C.-based Washington bureau. The National Urban League, a BBB-accredited organization, has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, placing it in the top 10 percent of all U.S. charities for adhering to good governance, fiscal responsibility and other best practices.

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Partners With U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to Engage Urban Youth in Outdoor Recreation and Stem Education

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Partners With U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to Engage Urban Youth in Outdoor Recreation and Stem Education

The 100-year old Black fraternity’s initiative commemorates American scientist, botanist, and inventor, George Washington Carver to promote Conservation of North American Wildlife and their Habitats

Phi Beta Sigma and US Fish Wildlife

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — Leading African-American fraternity Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. (Sigma) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) have joined forces to conserve America’s wildlife in a new way. The two organizations signed an historic memorandum of understanding today in Washington, DC, establishing a partnership that will provide new opportunities for urban youth to experience the natural world and promote interest in conservation and the biological sciences.The initiative commemorates American scientist, botanist, and inventor, George Washington Carver – a Sigma member who has inspired generations of youth to pursue careers in science.

“Many Americans find it difficult to experience nature in an increasingly urban America. This has profound implications for the health and well-being of our citizens and the future of our nation,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe. “Sigma – with its rich history of community leadership and deep connection to the legacy of Dr. Carver – is the ideal partner for the Service as we work to create meaningful connections between young people and the great outdoors.”

“The over-arching goal of Sigma is to impact the total well-being of the citizens in communities we serve,” shares Jonathan A. Mason, Sr., International President of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. “We are excited for this amazing opportunity to partner with the US Fish and Wildlife Service in engaging our youth through education and physical activity. We’ve aligned our focus with President Barack Obama’s ‘Am I My Brother’s Keeper?’ initiative as we take this opportunity to teach our young men that food does not come from a box, but from the ground,” Mason asserted.

The multi-faceted partnership will engage Sigma members and its Sigma Beta Club male mentoring youth groups to become environmental stewards. Goals include 1) teaching and engaging youth in outdoor recreation on public lands to promote health through physical activity; 2) promoting the pursuit of biological sciences careers through stewardship and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math); 3) building national, regional and local conservation partnerships; and 4) engaging Sigma as a voice on conservation issues.

Sigma Betas, Sigma’s youth auxiliary, will be engaged in hands-on activities with scientists to learn about wildlife, science, and conservation by participating in real scientific studies and conservation efforts. Through “citizen science” activities, Sigma Betas will learn how to follow in the footsteps of conservationist, botanist, and inventor, George Washington Carver. Carver is one of Sigma’s illustrious members, and is recognized for his groundbreaking research on plant biology and early experiments to improve soil conservation. Carver is also the only member of a historically African-American fraternity to be featured on the face of a U.S. coin (The 1951 half dollar).

Sigma Betas will also learn about designing an active lifestyle, and the connection between outdoor recreation and nature through Let’s Move Outside. The effort is part of the First Lady Michelle Obama’s initiative, Let’s Move, designed to get kids and families to get involved in physical activities on public lands. Outdoor activity helps kids maintain a healthy weight, boosts their immunity and bone health and lowers stress.

About the US Fish and Wildlife Service
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information, visit www.fws.gov, or connect with them through the major social media channels.

About Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.
Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. was founded on January 9, 1914 at Howard University, Washington, DC. As the organization celebrates 100 years of service, it has grown to amass over 150,000 members serving in nearly 700 chapters globally. As an international association of college-educated men, the organization’s programmatic areas include Bigger & Better Business, Education, Social Action and the Sigma Beta Club, a male youth mentoring program. The organization has corporate service partnerships with the March of Dimes Foundation and St. Jude’s Children’s Research.

Photo Caption: FWS and Sigma sign partnership agreement. (Back – left to right) Sigma Deputy Director Steve Ballard, Sigma Beta Club Foundation President and Past International President Arthur Thomas, Sigma Executive Director Darryl Anderson, Sigma Partner Liaison Kevin Davis, and Sigma International Director of Education Jean B. Lamothe; (Seated – left to right) Phi Beta Sigma International President Jonathan A. Mason and FWS Director Dan Ashe.
Photo Credit: Tami Heilemann, Department of Interior

State Senator Collins to host hearing on CPS truancy crisis

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on State Senator Collins to host hearing on CPS truancy crisis

Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins will host a public hearing Monday evening to gather input on addressing the truancy crisis in Chicago Public Schools. The hearing is one of a series authorized by House Joint Resolution 1, which Collins sponsored in the Senate last year.

The event, Truancy in CPS Task Force hearing (open to the public and the media), will be held today, Monday, April 28. 5:30 to 7 p.m.,  in  the Community Room, Urban Partnership Bank,   7801 S. State St., Chicago. Doors open at 5 p.m.

Truancy endangers educational outcomes and state funding, which is calculated in part on the basis of average daily attendance.

At the hearing, Collins will be joined by State Representative Linda Chapa LaVia, who sponsored the resolution in the House.

Women’s Business Development Center Offers May Programs That Support and Accelerate Women’s Business Ownership

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Women’s Business Development Center Offers May Programs That Support and Accelerate Women’s Business Ownership

WBDC provides a continuum of business development services to prospective and established women entrepreneurs including counseling, training, financial, certification and procurement assistance.

CHICAGO, IL – Workshops offered in May by the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC), a nationally and internationally recognized women’s business assistance center providing services and programs that support and accelerate women’s business ownership and strengthen the impact of women on the economy, are:

Friday, May 16, 2014, 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

“Grow Your Business with Allstate Supplier Diversity Opportunities”

Description: Gain an inside look at how corporations approach supplier diversity. Join the Women’s Business Development Center and WBDC Corporate Partner, Allstate, to take a closer look at the Allstate Supplier Diversity process. This seminar includes a Q&A with Allstate Supplier Diversity and Procurement team members.

Cost: $20.00

Location: Women’s Business Development Center, 8 S. Michigan Avenue, 4th Floor, Chicago, IL 60603

Registration: http://goo.gl/9S4XXe

Tuesday, May 20, 2014, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

“Expecting the Unexpected: Why is Small Business Risk Education Important for You?”

Description: At this workshop you will learn how to prepare and protect your business in the event of an accident, severe weather event or unexpected disruption. Topics include the financial benefits of effective risk management, strategies to protect your business from adverse events, and employee safety risk management.

Cost: $25.00

Location: East Bank Club, 500 N. Kingsbury Street, Chicago, IL 60654

Registration: http://goo.gl/EDvrbu

Wednesday, May 28, 2014, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

“Wisdom, Wine and Cheese: Introduction to WBDC Services”

Description: This interactive, networking session is for both prospective and established business owners.  Whether you’re thinking about starting your own business or growing the business you already have, this session will help you clarify your needs and learn more about WBDC resources.

Cost: $10.00 in advance, $20.00 at the door

Location: Women’s Business Development Center, 8 S. Michigan Avenue, 4th Floor, Chicago, IL 60603

Registration: http://goo.gl/SbcYFS

For further information about these or other WBDC workshops, visit http://www.WBDC.org or call (312) 853-3477. Now in its 28th year of operation, the WBDC provides a continuum of business development services to prospective and established women entrepreneurs including counseling, training, financial, certification and procurement assistance in Spanish and English.

Theatre Y Presents the Company Premiere of Robinson Jeffers Adaptation of Euripides’ “Medea”

Posted by Admin On April - 28 - 2014 Comments Off on Theatre Y Presents the Company Premiere of Robinson Jeffers Adaptation of Euripides’ “Medea”
Directed by Kevin V. Smith

Featuring Melissa Lorraine and Carlo Lorenzo Garcia Running May 7–June 1 at Theatre Y in Chicago

CHICAGO, IL – Theatre Y proudly presents Euripides’ Medea, freely adapted by poet Robinson Jeffers at Theatre Y, 2649 N. Francisco Ave. in Chicago, May 7–June 1, 2014. Director Kevin V. Smith returns to the helm to bring a bold, dangerous, and emotionally rich dreamvision to Euripides’ classic, having previously directed Theatre Y’s wildly imaginative and experimental productions of Exiles and The Misunderstanding.

“This show marks my 11th collaboration with Melissa Lorraine,” says Kevin V. Smith, Theatre Y company member and Medea director “Medea allows audiences and artists alike to explore the dark side of human nature, our own inner workings. It’s my hope that doing this sort of work helps to put a little more empathy into the world while creating a bold piece of art at the same time.”

Medea’s crime is that she loves too deeply, and then allows her hate to grow as intense when she is forsaken. Scorned by her lover and killing her children, Medea is one of the most haunting characters in all of Greek mythology. Jeffers’ poetic adaptation fleshes out her thoughts for both their beauty and paradox. All of the texts previously produced by Theatre Y have been lesser- known works with this, Theatre Y consciously enters a new juncture to boldly reinterpret the known and the beloved.

The action of the play will contrast two different worlds: the world of Medea, an expressionistic nightmare vision of a couple going through a divorce, and the world of the Female Chorus, a contemporary dream world of girls preparing for prom. The style of the production is a hybrid of Viewpoints based abstract expressionist performance style with realism inlaid with Grotowski memory work.

“I have held Medea at arm’s length and perceived her as untouchable,” says Melissa Lorraine, Theatre Y Artistic Director and Medea cast member on the character of Medea. “This production is now my prayer on behalf of us all, who seem doomed to commit abhorrent acts despite our purest intentions, simply because we are fragile and love deeply.”

The ensemble cast of 16 includes Melissa Lorraine, Carlo Lorenzo Garcia*, Simina Contras, and a contemporary female chorus that takes a primary role. Production staff includes Branimira Ivanova (costume and make-up design), Benjamin Wardell of Lucky Plush (movement), and photographer Devron Enarson (lighting design)

*denotes member of Actors’ Equity Association

Performance and Ticket Information

Opening performance May 7 at 7pm with additional performances May 8–June 1, 2014 on Thursdays through Sundays at 7pm, except Thursday, May 15, 2014.

All performances are at Theatre Y, 2649 N. Francisco Ave. in Chicago. Performance space is located inside St Luke’s Lutheran Church of Logan Square.

Tickets are $15–$20 and are available by phone at 708.209.0183 or online at theatre-y.com.

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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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