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Archive for March 24th, 2016

Seven Iranians Working for Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Affiliated Entities Charged for Conducting Coordinated Campaign of Cyber Attacks Against U.S. Financial Sector

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Seven Iranians Working for Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Affiliated Entities Charged for Conducting Coordinated Campaign of Cyber Attacks Against U.S. Financial Sector

One Defendant Also Charged with Obtaining Unauthorized Access into Control Systems of a New York Dam

A grand jury in the Southern District of New York indicted seven Iranian individuals who were employed by two Iran-based computer companies, ITSecTeam (ITSEC) and Mersad Company (MERSAD), that performed work on behalf of the Iranian Government, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, on computer hacking charges related to their involvement in an extensive campaign of over 176 days of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks.

Ahmad Fathi, 37; Hamid Firoozi, 34; Amin Shokohi, 25; Sadegh Ahmadzadegan, aka Nitr0jen26, 23; Omid Ghaffarinia, aka PLuS, 25; Sina Keissar, 25; and Nader Saedi, aka Turk Server, 26, launched DDoS attacks against 46 victims, primarily in the U.S financial sector, between late 2011 and mid-2013.  The attacks disabled victim bank websites, prevented customers from accessing their accounts online and collectively cost the victims tens of millions of dollars in remediation costs as they worked to neutralize and mitigate the attacks on their servers.  In addition, Firoozi is charged with obtaining unauthorized access into the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems of the Bowman Dam, located in Rye, New York, in August and September of 2013.

The indictment was announced today by Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch, Director James B. Comey of the FBI, Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin and U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara of the Southern District of New York.

“In unsealing this indictment, the Department of Justice is sending a powerful message: that we will not allow any individual, group, or nation to sabotage American financial institutions or undermine the integrity of fair competition in the operation of the free market,” said Attorney General Lynch.  “Through the work of our National Security Division, the FBI, and U.S. Attorney’s Offices around the country, we will continue to pursue national security cyber threats through the use of all available tools, including public criminal charges.  And as today’s unsealing makes clear, individuals who engage in computer hacking will be exposed for their criminal conduct and sought for apprehension and prosecution in an American court of law.”

“The FBI will find those behind cyber intrusions and hold them accountable — wherever they are, and whoever they are,” said Director Comey.  “By calling out the individuals and nations who use cyber attacks to threaten American enterprise, as we have done in this indictment, we will change behavior.”

“Like past nation state-sponsored hackers, these defendants and their backers believed that they could attack our critical infrastructure without consequence, from behind a veil of cyber anonymity,” said Assistant Attorney General Carlin.  “This indictment once again shows there is no such veil – we can and will expose malicious cyber hackers engaging in unlawful acts that threaten our public safety and national security.”

“The charges announced today respond directly to a cyber-assault on New York, its institutions and its infrastructure,” said U.S. Attorney Bharara.  “The alleged onslaught of cyber-attacks on 46 of our largest financial institutions, many headquartered in New York City, resulted in hundreds of thousands of customers being unable to access their accounts and tens of millions of dollars being spent by the companies trying to stay online through these attacks.  The infiltration of the Bowman Avenue dam represents a frightening new frontier in cybercrime.  These were no ordinary crimes, but calculated attacks by groups with ties to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard and designed specifically to harm America and its people.  We now live in a world where devastating attacks on our financial system, our infrastructure and our way of life can be launched from anywhere in the world, with a click of a mouse.  Confronting these types of cyber-attacks cannot be the job of just law enforcement.  The charges announced today should serve as a wake-up call for everyone responsible for the security of our financial markets and for guarding our infrastructure.  Our future security depends on heeding this call.”

According to the indictment unsealed today in federal court in New York City:

DDoS Attacks

The DDoS campaign began in approximately December 2011, and the attacks occurred only sporadically until September 2012, at which point they escalated in frequency to a near-weekly basis, between Tuesday and Thursdays during normal business hours in the United States.  On certain days during the campaign, victim computer servers were hit with as much as 140 gigabits of data per second and hundreds of thousands of customers were cut off from online access to their bank accounts.

Fathi, Firoozi and Shokohi were responsible for ITSEC’s portion of the DDoS campaign against the U.S. financial sector and are charged with one count of conspiracy to commit and aid and abet computer hacking.  Fathi was the leader of ITSEC and was responsible for supervising and coordinating ITSEC’s portion of the DDoS campaign, along with managing computer intrusion and cyberattack projects being conducted for the government of Iran.  Firoozi was the network manager at ITSEC and, in that role, procured and managed computer servers that were used to coordinate and direct ITSEC’s portion of the DDoS campaign.  Shokohi is a computer hacker who helped build the botnet used by ITSEC to carry out its portion of the DDoS campaign and created malware used to direct the botnet to engage in those attacks.  During the time that he worked in support of the DDoS campaign, Shokohi received credit for his computer intrusion work from the Iranian government towards his completion of his mandatory military service requirement in Iran.

Ahmadzadegan, Ghaffarinia, Keissar and Saedi were responsible for managing the botnet used in MERSAD’s portion of the campaign, and are also charged with one count of conspiracy to commit and aid and abet computer hacking.  Ahmadzadegan was a co-founder of MERSAD and was responsible for managing the botnet used in MERSAD’s portion of the DDoS campaign.  He was also associated with Iranian hacking groups Sun Army and the Ashiyane Digital Security Team (ADST), and claimed responsibility for hacking servers belonging to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in February 2012.  Ahmadzadegan has also provided training to Iranian intelligence personnel.  Ghaffarinia was a co-founder of MERSAD and created malicious computer code used to compromise computer servers and build MERSAD’s botnet.  Ghaffarinia was also associated with Sun Army and ADST, and has also claimed responsibility for hacking NASA servers in February 2012, as well as thousands of other servers in the United States, the United Kingdom and Israel.  Keissar procured computer servers used by MERSAD to access and manipulate MERSAD’s botnet, and also performed preliminary testing of the same botnet prior to its use in MERSAD’s portion of the DDoS campaign.  Saedi was an employee of MERSAD and a former Sun Army computer hacker who expressly touted himself as an expert in DDoS attacks.  Saedi wrote computer scripts used to locate vulnerable servers to build the MERSAD botnet used in its portion of the DDoS campaign.

For the purpose of carrying out the attacks, each group built and maintained their own botnets, which consisted of thousands of compromised computer systems owned by unwitting third parties that had been infected with the defendants’ malware, and subject to their remote command and control.  The defendants and/or their unindicted co-conspirators then sent orders to their botnets to direct significant amounts of malicious traffic at computer servers used to operate the websites for victim financial institutions, which overwhelmed victim servers and disabled them from customers seeking to legitimately access the websites or their online bank accounts.  Although the DDoS campaign caused damage to the financial sector victims and interfered with their customers’ ability to do online banking, the attacks did not affect or result in the theft of customer account data.

DDoS Botnet Remediation

Since the attacks, the Department of Justice and the FBI have worked together with the private sector to effectively neutralize and remediate the defendants’ botnets.  Specifically, through approximately 20 FBI Liaison Alert System (FLASH) messages, the FBI regularly provided updated information collected from the investigation regarding the identity of systems that been infected with the defendants’ malware and operating as bots within the malicious botnets.  In addition, the FBI conducted extensive direct outreach to Internet service providers responsible for hosting systems that have been infected with the defendants’ malware to provide them information and assistance in removing the malware to protect their customers and other potential victims of the defendants’ unlawful cyber activities.  Through these outreach efforts and the cooperation of the private sector, over 95 percent of the known part of the defendants’ botnets have been successfully remediated.

Bowman Dam Intrusion

Between Aug. 28, 2013, and Sept. 18, 2013, Firoozi repeatedly obtained unauthorized access to the SCADA systems of the Bowman Dam, and is charged with one substantive count of obtaining and aiding and abetting computer hacking.  This unauthorized access allowed him to repeatedly obtain information regarding the status and operation of the dam, including information about the water levels, temperature and status of the sluice gate, which is responsible for controlling water levels and flow rates.  Although that access would normally have permitted Firoozi to remotely operate and manipulate the Bowman Dam’s sluice gate, Firoozi did not have that capability because the sluice gate had been manually disconnected for maintenance at the time of the intrusion.

Remediation for the Bowman Dam intrusion cost over $30,000.

All seven defendants face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for conspiracy to commit and aid and abet computer hacking.  Firoozi faces an additional five years in prison for obtaining and aiding and abetting unauthorized access to a protected computer at the Bowman Dam.

An indictment is merely an accusation and all defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.

The case was investigated by the FBI, including the Chicago; Cincinnati; New York; Newark, New Jersey; Phoenix; and San Francisco Field Offices.  This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy T. Howard of the Southern District of New York, with the substantial assistance of Deputy Chief Sean M. Newell of the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.

Fathi et al Indictment.pdf

Source: FBI

Attorney General Madigan Collects Nearly $1 Billion in State Revenue in 2015

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Attorney General Madigan Collects Nearly $1 Billion in State Revenue in 2015

2015 recoveries for state pension systems brings total pension recoveries by Madigan to over $400 million


CHICAGO, IL — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced her office collected $983,282,519 in revenue on behalf of the state through litigation and collection efforts in 2015.


“I am committed to continuing my work to generate millions of dollars in funding at this critical time in Illinois,” Madigan said. “In total, I have brought in more than $12 billion since I took office, which includes funding for our state’s pension systems and support for state programs and services.”


The revenue collected by Madigan in 2015 included $52.5 million from a settlement with Standard & Poor’s over alleged misrepresentations about the processes it used to assign credit ratings to mortgage-backed securities. This was the fourth settlement Madigan reached to cover losses sustained from investments in mortgage-backed securities that contributed to the 2008 economic collapse. Just last month, Madigan announced a fifth settlement for $22.5 million with Morgan Stanley, bringing the total distributed to the state pension systems based on the recoveries in these settlements to more than $400 million.


In addition, Madigan’s office collected $320 million through collections litigation, including cases involving the collection of funds for damage to state property, child support enforcement, fines and penalties. Madigan also collected more than $265 million through tobacco litigation and nearly $341 million in estate tax revenues.


Also in 2015, Madigan secured a variety of settlements with pharmaceutical companies for deceptive practices, including more than $4.8 million as the final payment from the 2012 settlement with Actavis, which alleged the company defrauded the state’s Medicaid program by inflating wholesale prices. Madigan’s office also secured nearly $4.5 million from Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation for kickback allegations and more than $3 million from Amgen over deceptive prescription marketing.


Madigan’s office also secured nearly $700,000 in environmental settlements to remedy a train derailment and ethanol leak in Rockford, landfill air pollution in Northern Illinois and groundwater contamination at the Shay Mine in Macoupin County.



Unions Who Represent Faculty and Staff at City Colleges of Chicago Will Host Community Town Hall

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Unions Who Represent Faculty and Staff at City Colleges of Chicago Will Host Community Town Hall

The Unions who represent faculty and staff at the City Colleges of Chicago are hosting a town hall event this Monday, March 28 at 6 PM at Grace Church, 637 S. Dearborn. Union members and students will be in attendance to share their frustrations regarding the current direction of the City Colleges of Chicago. Faculty Council voted “No Confidence” in Chancellor Hyman back in February, and now all the employees at the City Colleges are joining together to draw attention to the problematic polices at our colleges. 

Program relocations are forcing students to travel across the city to pursue their education, the new tuition structure unfairly hurts part-time and international students, enrollment continues to decline, and the Chancellor refuses to meet with faculty and staff to address our concerns. Several alderman and state representatives plan to attend to hear first-hand from our members.

For more information about the event, contact Kaitlyn Skoirchet, Chief of Staff for Local 1600 at (312)755-9400. Cell: (281)782-2899.


City Colleges Community Town Hall

Hosted by the Alliance of City College Unions

Share your concerns about the direction of the City Colleges of Chicago! Chicago aldermen and Illinois legislators will be there to hear from you!

Consolidations and program closures forcing students to travel across Chicago to pursue their education
Tuition increases which unfairly penalize part-time and international students
The end of last-week registration
The failure of the administration to reach a contract with adjunct faculty and security officers
Disregard for faculty, staff, student or community input

Where: Grace Church, 637 S. Dearborn St., Chicago, IL 60605

When: Monday, March 28 6PM to 8:30PM

Arizona Black Chamber Helping Inner City Youth

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Arizona Black Chamber Helping Inner City Youth
Checkered Flag Run Foundation & Arizona Black Chamber of Commerce champions youth by gifting world class sporting event experiences and more

Checkered Flag Run Foundation

Phoenix, AZ (BlackNews.com) – Maintaining its commitment to the City of Phoenix and area students, the Checkered Flag Run Foundation and the Arizona Black Chamber of Commerce announced today that it will donate 500 tickets for local inner city youth to attend the Phoenix Grand Prix this year. The donation is part of the organizations ongoing commitment to supporting the education and enrichment needs of area children, and helping to ensure every child gets to cross the finish line.

The donation follows a presentation of a gift of $5,000 in November to the City of Phoenixs Parks & Recreation during the City Council meeting for the Youth 365 initiative. Tickets for inner city youth to attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup were also donated. Nearly 250 guests attended.

The staff and youth participants had an opportunity to experience a new sporting event which was thoroughly enjoyed, said Inger Erickson, parks and recreation department director in a thank you letter to Alan AP Powell, Aaron D. Bare, Robert E. Branscomb II and Michael E. Johnson of the Checkered Flag Run Foundation. Several of the youth mentioned that they want to become race car drivers. It is great to see our inner city youth have the opportunity to see a world beyond their neighborhoods through these types of experiences.

The Checkered Flag Run Foundations mission is to provide diverse educational programs that impact under-served students. The organization strives to develop and invest in education specific to school readiness, raise awareness of educational opportunities that have a positive impact on educational attainment and promote diverse learning experiences to support necessary 21st century skills.

The organizations programs include the Bridge Summit, an invitation-only forum that seeks solutions and best practices for law enforcement professionals, Phoenix Tools 4 School, a school supply drive for students in need and Racing to the Top, a scholarship program that promotes the importance of higher education.

The Checkered Flag Run Foundation is also a supporter and partner of the My Brothers Keeper initiative which was launched by President Barack Obama to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color, and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.

For more information about the Checkered Flag Run Foundation, including ways to support, visit www.cfrf.org



Animal Rights Activist Sentenced to Time Served for Freeing 2,000 Mink from a Fur Farm

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Animal Rights Activist Sentenced to Time Served for Freeing 2,000 Mink from a Fur Farm
Tyler Lang and co-defendant Kevin Johnson were indicted under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act for freeing mink from an Illinois fur farm.    


CHICAGO, IL – Animal rights activist Tyler Lang was sentenced to three months time served, six months home imprisonment, six months community confinement and one year of supervisied release along with a $200,000 restitution payment, when he appeared for sentencing in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. This sentence is for freeing 2,000 mink from a fur farm and spray-painting “Liberation is Love” on the side of a barn with his co-defendant Kevin Johnson. The fur farm closed down as a result of their action.

In 2014, Lang and Johnson were indicted under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act for the mink liberation in Morris, IL. During the summer of 2015, Lang and Johnson entered into non-cooperating plea agreements through which they plead guilty to violating the AETA. On February 29, 2016, Johnson was sentenced to three years.

The public has grown increasingly skeptical of charging people with “terrorism” for saving animals from living in barren wire cages on fur farms and being killed by methods that may include anal electrocution or having their necks snapped; during Johnson’s sentencing, even Assistant U.S. Attorney Bethany K. Biesenthal described his intentions as “noble.” Today she described Tyler’s beliefs as “a very noble cause.”

Skepticism surrounding the AETA stems from its origin. It was crafted by the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group of corporate power players who write pieces of model legislation that suit their interests, and then ALEC passes off the legislation to members of Congress. Many members of ALEC are part of the pharmaceutical, big ag, and other industries that exploit and kill animals for profit. ALEC devised the AETA, legislation not meant so much for prosecuting activists (Lang and Johnson are among only a handful of people who’ve been charged under the AETA), but to conjure public fear of the animal liberation movement and chill dissent.

“Tyler and Kevin’s case should be a reminder to us all that we have to show each other love and support in the face of State repression,” says the support team for Kevin and Tyler. “One of the best ways responses we can have is to take care of each other and continue to work for a day in which no animals are confined to cages and killed for profit.”

Tyler Lang, left, and Kevin Olliff (aka Kevin Johnson), right.
Photo courtesy of supportkevinandtyler.com.
Support Kevin and Tyler website: http://supportkevinandtyler.com

The PCC Network Travels to Greenville, South Carolina

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on The PCC Network Travels to Greenville, South Carolina
Lottie in Red.jpg

Once again the PCC Network travels to Greenville, South Carolina, to tape a spiritual presentation of Pastor Lottie Woods Hall and The Intercessor Health and Healing Center.

Pastor Lottie Woods ventured into the civil-rights movement as a high school student and was jailed with Martin Luther King, Jr. She had the spiritual audacity to fight for civil-rights matters… then unseen … are seen today!


Rev. Harold E.Bailey, founder and president of Probation Challenge, said, “My sister in the Lord, has much to tell and the Network desire for the world to hear!  Hall is expected to have a word regarding ‘When hearing the voice of God … what’s your response?’ The PCC Network will be there to capture every word.


We invite the public to share in this experience. Perhaps a word may perhaps make a spiritual change not only to you – but the entire world. Enjoy!


‘The Intercessory Health and Healing Center’

Sunday, April 3, 2016 – 5:00 PM


Various guests to appear including:

Evangelist Cathy Woods Gray

Birmingham, Alabama



1298 Pendleton Street

Greenville, South Carolina

Contact: 864-420-1672


Photo: Pastor Lottie Woods Hall, The Intercessory Health and Healing Center



First Book Ever for Black Authors; Teaches How to Sell More Books

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on First Book Ever for Black Authors; Teaches How to Sell More Books
New book, “Black Author Secrets: How I Make $2,500 + In Book Sales Every Month!” is the first ever African American guide to selling more books

Black Author Secrets E-Book by Dante Lee

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — Award-winning entrepreneur Dante Lee has just published the first ever African American guide to selling more books, and in this unique step-by-step guide, he reveals all of his secrets on how authors can be more profitable and more successful. The book is entitled, Black Author Secrets: How I Make $2,500+ in Book Sales Every Month! and it’s exclusively available for just $2.99 via his publishing company at www.UrbanEbooks.com.

In this 108-page book, Lee, who himself sells an average of 100 books or more per day, teaches existing and aspiring authors everything they need to know to generate constant streams of revenue with their books. He shares his own personal knowledge, insight and experience!

“I wrote this book,” Lee comments, “because I know that a lot of authors, especially African American authors, are having difficulty making money from their books. They spend a year or more writing, editing, and proofreading, and then after the book comes out, nothing happens!”

He adds, “This book is the first book of it’s kind that shows African American authors exactly what they need to do to make at least $2,500 a month in book sales.”

The topics covered in the book include:

* Who I Am and Why You Should Listen to Me
* Understanding the Book Industry – Facts Vs. Myths
* What it Takes to Be a New York Times Bestselling Author
* How to Come Up with the Best Possible Title for Your Book
* How to Design the Best Possible Book Cover for Your Book
* How to Edit, Proofread, and Create the Best Possible Content
* How to Get Your Book Published
* How to Publish Your Book Yourself (and keep more profits)
* How to Create Your Own Online Book Store
* How to Actually Make Money from Your Book
* The Best Pricing Strategies for Your Books
* The Best Marketing Ideas for Your Book
* The Best Black Author/ Business Events to Promote Your Book at
* and much more!



The book also includes:

* More than 30 colorful images of some of the best-selling African American book covers



* Step-by-step instructions and snapshots on how to create your own online book store

* Amazing strategies, tips and techniques that publishers, book stores, and other successful authors would never share with you!
But wait, there’s more!

As a companion, Lee has also released another e-book entitled 7 Killer Black PR Secrets: How to Get Your Story in Any African American Newspaper, Magazine, and Blog (What PR Firms and Journalists Will Never Tell You!). This book is the first publication ever that teaches both African American authors and entrepreneurs to maximize their potential with the Black media. Readers will learn how to develop, enhance, and distribute eye-catching, sensational and mind-blowing press releases.

For more details about either book, visit www.UrbanEbooks.com


Photo: Bookcover



Illinois State Board of Education’s Student Advisory Council Seeks Applicants

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Illinois State Board of Education’s Student Advisory Council Seeks Applicants

High school students invited to provide perspective on state education issues 

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) seeks high school students to share their input on state education issues as part of its Student Advisory Council (SAC). Students who will start the upcoming school year as a sophomore, junior, or senior in an Illinois public high school are eligible to apply for one of 12 open spots by May 27.

“ISBE’s Student Advisory Council creates greater opportunities for deepening students’ relationships with educators and school leaders and helps students feel personally invested in their school communities,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “The Board is grateful for the talent, experience, and thoughtful input these extraordinary young people bring to our discussions each year.”

The SAC, which was established in 1975, represents a diverse group of students who work with the State Board and State Superintendent to provide student perspectives on ISBE’s existing and proposed programs, policies, and regulations. Applicants undergo a competitive review process that looks for strong interpersonal skills and the ability to think creatively, work well in groups, and develop innovative solutions.

“Being a member of the Student Advisory Council is like being the link between my classmates, my school, and my state. I get the chance to tell board members about what is working and what is not,” said Seetha Aribindi, a member of this year’s council and a junior at Hinsdale Central High School. “With this council, we improve our education system together. It is refreshing to see that the members of the Board truly value our opinions.”

2016-17 SACWho: Illinois public high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors serve on ISBE’s Student Advisory Council.Deadline to apply: 5 p.m., May 27. Applications are available online. For questions: Candidates can contact Vincent Camille at vcamille@isbe.net or (217) 782-5396. Each year, SAC members select a year-long research project and present their findings and recommendations to the State Board. This school year’s council focused on the importance of students’ feedback in efforts to improve teacher quality and build a more collaborative school community. On March 16, the Board heard the SAC’s presentation and approved its recommendation to pursue ways to increase the level of communication between students and teachers and school leaders.

“We worked as a team, we pursued our goals, and we did not let any difference in opinion distract us,” said SAC member Alex Palacios, a senior at Kankakee High School. “This council is one of a kind – it offers new experiences and new friendships that would have never existed had I not joined this group.”

One of the ways the SAC aims to incorporate more student voice is to expand the council’s interaction with the Board during the school year. Typically, the SAC meets once a month and attends two Board meetings over the course of the year. For the 2016-17 school year, the SAC aims to have three members present at each Board meeting from September through March to answer Board members’ questions on particular issues and provide reports on long-term questions asked of the council.

The following four SAC members plan to return to the council next year:


School City Grade
Seetha Aribindi Hinsdale Central High School Willowbrook Junior

Bridget Harris

Belvidere North High School Belvidere Sophomore
Kathleen Rock Byron High School Byron Sophomore

Hannah Sunderland

Knoxville High School Dahinda Junior

The following 12 members are graduating seniors:

Name School City

George Baker

East St. Louis High School East St. Louis
Niquan Dawson J. Sterling Morton High School Berwyn
Christopher Kim Northside College Prep Chicago
Haydn Lambert Monticello High School White Heath
Mackenzie Flynn Stillman Valley High School

Stillman Valley

Colleen Madden Carlinville High School Carlinville

Xiao Mei

Jones College Prep Chicago
Nicole Marcus Naperville North High School Naperville

Sally Nijim

Willowbrook High School

Villa Park

Alexander Palacios Kankakee High School Kankakee

Hayley Palmer

Carlyle High School


Travis Whitt

Altamont High School


Black Sociologist Selected to Lead New Institute

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Black Sociologist Selected to Lead New Institute
Renowned sociologist and author of “Color Stories: Black Women and Colorism in the 21st Century” selected to lead new institute

JeffriAnne Wilder

Jacksonville, FL (BlackNews.com) – JeffriAnne Wilder, Ph.D. has been selected to serve as Founding Director of the Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations at the University of North Florida. As a distinguished scholar and thought-leader specializing in cultural diversity, race relations, and gender issues, she brings an unparalleled knowledge and expertise to the leadership position.

Wilder, a tenured Associate Professor of Sociology, brings more than 15 years of experience in higher education to her new position, and her scholarship has been published in an array of academic journals and publications. As a race scholar, my professional philosophy and overall approach to the academy is centered on the following core principles: a quest for knowledge, creativity, and a spirit of activism, comments Wilder. I am a sociologist who employs an intersectional lens of race, class, and gender to the critical analysis of the social world and institutions, she further notes. Wilder argues that in the 21st century, matters of diversity are critically important to the vitality and sustainability of our colleges and universities.

Wilder earned her Ph.D. in Sociology, with a concentration in Women’s Studies and Gender Research, from the University of Florida. She also completed her M.A. in Sociology from Cleveland State University, and a B.A. from Allegheny College. Wilders areas of research interest include race and ethnic relations, minorities in higher education, women of color in the U.S., qualitative methodology, and the sociology of teaching and learning.

Wilder is the author of Color Stories: Black Women and Colorism in the 21st Century, published in October 2015. The book explores the impact of skin-tone bias and discrimination found in communities of color, particularly among Black women and girls in the era of “post-racialism.”
About the UNF Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations (SRER)
The UNF Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations (SRER) was created in 2015 as an inter-disciplinary research institute on the study of racial inequality that is centered on the local and southeast region, but equally attentive to the broader impact in our national and international communities. Grounded within the core principles of research, education and public scholarship, this endeavor aims to foster critical and creative thinking, conduct and facilitate empirically based research, and promote and support public scholarship on issues surrounding race, racism and racial inequality.

To learn more about the University of North Florida and the recently launched Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations, visit www.unf.edu/aa/srer/.

Wilder has been featured by many local, national, and international media outlets. She is available for media interview, speaking engagements, and book signings and may be reached via email at j.wilder@unf.edu.


Photo: JeffriAnne Wilder, Ph.D.



Mayoral Proclamation Honors Events, Volunteer Services

Posted by Admin On March - 24 - 2016 Comments Off on Mayoral Proclamation Honors Events, Volunteer Services

CHICAGO, IL – In recognition of “the dedication, contributions and achievements of Executive Service Corps,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proclaimed the day of ESC’s Celebration of Service, April 19, 2016 to be “Celebration of Volunteer Service Day” in Chicago!!!

Executive Service Corps (ESC) will hold its Annual Celebration of Service on Tuesday, April 19 at the Standard Club in Chicago. Registration and champagne reception at 11 a.m. and the event program is at Noon.

Celebration of Service will showcase the significant impact of volunteers in the community and pay homage to all who serve nonprofits. ESC will present the 2016 Corporate Citizen Award, reflecting the deep commitment of companies and employees that help build a vibrant nonprofit sector by providing vital services to people and communities in need.

With Keynote Speaker Patrick McCaskey of the Chicago Bears and opportunity for great deals on experience of a lifetime travel packages during the ESC live auction with auctioneer and entertainer David Goodman, join ESC in celebrating social service and volunteerism in our community.


Get Your Tickets Now! www.CelebrationOfVolunteerService.org

 Your company, club, religious group, or association can show your support of volunteerism by sponsoring us! 

Sign up now at: www.SponsorVolunteerService.org 


Quick Facts:

Who:  Executive Service Corps – a not-for-profit that trains leaders in our community to provide consulting services to nonprofit organizations. ESC is making nonprofits successful!

What: Annual Celebration of Service – Our annual fundraiser honoring our volunteers and supporting our work year-round.

When: Tuesday, April 19 at 11 am

Where: Standard Club, 320 S. Plymouth Ct, Chicago, IL 60604

Why: Honor Volunteers and Raise Funds for the Executive Service Corps’ while hearing Chicago Bear Patrick McCaskey speak and bidding on some once in a lifetime experiences

How: Get Tickets Now at www.CelebrationOfVolunteerService.org

About Executive Service Corps of Chicago

ESC is a nonprofit organization with a mission to make nonprofits successful. Nearly 200 ESC consultants are highly-skilled and trained nonprofit specialists, working with over 100 Chicago-area nonprofits and public agencies every year. They work in teams, building, leadership, strategy, and solutions that have an impact on the lives of 3 million men, women, and children in our communities.


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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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