From October 2008

Randy Knox for Supervisor – District 11

By Jorge Portugal L.

knox.jpgRandy Knox, a well known public figure in San Francisco is the leading candidate to represent District 11 as supervisor.  A man of keen intellect and the highest integrity who listens carefully to all points of view, then, arrives at a carefully considered and practical opinion and/or solution. For many years one of the leading criminal law attorneys in San Francisco, Randy has also served as president of the Board of Appeals Commission. The combination gives him a factual perspective like few have in San Francisco on issues of public safety and respect for diversity.
Randy Knox has pledged to reinvent the neighborhood response programs and not rest until people once again feel safe while walking the streets. He will also work to reform the Building and Planning Codes to adapt to the needs of the City’s changing populations and their extended families, and, work to ensure equal access to City services and resources for every ethnic community. He will work to reduce parking fees to previous levels so small businesses can attract more clientele.

TV Star Gives Back To The Community

By Wade Woods

takewinge.jpgTerri Vaughn who stared in the Steve Harvey sitcom playing the girl friend of Cedric the Entertainer and a product of San Francisco founded a foundation to assist young women in Bay Area inner cities.
The Take Wings Foundation was founded in 1997 by award winning actress Terri J. Vaughn who is a product of one of California’s most notorious city neighborhoods and has a first hand knowledge of the challenges and choices that teenaged girls are faced with on a daily basis. Out of this first hand knowledge, her own personal success and her desire to give back to her community, she started “Take Wings”.
Ms Vaughn was driven to develop an organization that would specifically address the needs of the young women living in Hunters Point and similar communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. Read more

Faces Around the Bay: Linda Japzon

LindaJapzon.jpgLinda Japzon resides in San Leandro and retired from College of Alameda where she was a Staff Administration Assistant. She says, “I live in a mobile home park with my 85 year old mother who is healthier than me.”
Japzon is a member of Four Seasons Concerts and enjoys the door-to-door transportation. She loves to travel and used to dance a lot, especially folk dance.  “I still dance on weekends,” she adds as she rushes off to a concert.

Photo and text by Barbara Fluhrer.

“West Oakland, When Oakland Was Oakland”

By Mary Rudge
Part 2

Mrs. Janet Keith Hill and Mrs. Jessie Allen Brown were neighbors and best friends on Shorey Street since childhood. They fondly relate their memories of West Oakland.

Shorey.jpg“West Oakland; That’s when Oakland was Oakland.” Janet Hill enthusiastically recalled. “I loved to scout around and my mother let me roam freely. She was one of the few who was in favor of children satisfying their curiosity, seeking and experiencing. Most kids stayed indoors, had chores and studied, and weren’t out on the streets. They could come out and play at certain times. I would tie my jump rope to the ring of the metal hitching post in front of the old mansion and  Jessie and I would jump rope. We had great times together.
“But I was the mischievous one, just naturally interested, curious about everything. On my own I would explore, peek through windows, because I wanted to know what people did and how they lived their lives. I was a healthy, active, energetic child. It was a good and safe neighborhood for children, then, and I felt happy with my freedom. I loved the whole area, all the people,” said Janet Hill. Read more

Rev. Jesse Davis Celebrates 40 Years at Shiloh Baptist

By David Scott

JesseDavismug.jpgThe first childhood memory of Pastor Jesse L. Davis, founder of Shiloh Baptist Church, was in Castor Louisiana, where he attended Macedonia Baptist Church. Since there were no schools in the area, he learned in church, along with his five brothers and four sisters.
Pastor Davis credits his early development to his step dad Lonnie Crawford. “He taught me how to be a man, he made everything from scratch, he made our shoes from straps from the sawmill where he worked making gunstock handles,” he said.
Pastor Davis’ mother was a domestic worker, who washed and folded white folks’ clothes.
After spending four years in the Navy, visiting many countries, Pastor Davis moved to Oakland in 1959, taking a job at Merritt Hospital. He joined the Tabernacle Baptist Church on Edes Street under Rev. T. S. Washington. In 1964, Pastor Davis accepted his call to organize ministry at Macedonia Baptist Church under Rev. Adolph Kelly. After three years, he was called to help Pastor H. L. Hudson at William Chapel. Read more

“Rock the Runway” Show

KBLX 102.9 Radio Personality Nikki Thomas will host the Bay Area Rock the Runway Fashion Show, a benefit for Alameda County groups that are helping foster care youth and other young people become productive adults.
The event will take place Saturday, Oct. 25, 6 p.m.. at the Scottish Rite Center, 1547 Lakeside Drive in Oakland.
Oakland City Councilwoman Desley Brooks will be recognized for her outstanding work on the frontlines of youth development. In addition, the program will honor two foster youth with the first annual Learners to Leaders Award.
Cost of the event is $20 general admission, $10 for youth. For information, call (510) 472-0782. Tickets are available online at

Laney College to Present “The Piano Lesson” By August Wilson

By Post Staff

“The Piano Lesson,” an award winning play by August Wilson, will be presented next weekend by Laney Theater Arts and the Fusion Theater Company.
Performances will be held Thursday, Oct. 23, through Saturday, Oct. 25, as well as Thursday, Oct. 30, through Saturday Nov. 1, at Laney College Theater, 900 Fallon St., in Oakland. All shows begin at 8 p.m. General admission is $10 and $5 for students and staff.
An opening night Gala Student Scholarship Fundraising Reception will be held Thursday, Oct. 23, 6:30 p.m., at the theater. General admission for the gala is $20 and $5 for students and staff.
“The Piano Lesson” is about a brother and sister who are arguing whether or not to sell the family’s ancestral piano. The brother wants to sell it to buy land, while his sister insists on keeping it. The piano has the carved faces of their great-grandfather’s wife and son, who were sold in exchange for the piano during the days of enslavement. Read more

Authentic Southern Cuisine At “Sweetie Pie and Poppy’s”

Sweetie Pie and Poppy were the names given Rose Marie Hunter and her husband O. J.  Hunter by their first grandchild.  The name stuck and they named the restaurant Sweetie Pie and Poppy’s.  The potato pie is sweet and the peach cobbler as well.  You can order them whole to take home, and they’re home made!
The late O.J. Hunter worked for Ford in Richmond and Milpitas for 30+ years, and then started his own cardboard recycling company which he ran for 20+ years.  He always said, “If I ever do another business, I’ll own it so I don’t have to be dictated to.”   His wife was a school secretary at Columbus School in Berkeley, worked at Cal, and then opened three pre-schools: Rose Marie’s Motivation Pre Schools.  She wanted to teach pre-schoolers (and their parents) about healthy meals.  Everyone used to say, “You need to open a restaurant”, and they did. He was a friend of Don Barksdale, owner of the Sportsman Club, where the Hunter’s had their first date, and eventually they opened up their restaurant there.  Both were born in Hope, Arkansas. Read more

Boys 2 Men Leads Youth In The Right Direction

By Roberta Cobb and David Scott

It takes a village to raise a child, and a church to raise a village,  says Cornell Gilkey, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Boys 2 Men Youth Outreach in Oakland.
The goal of Boys 2 Men is to lead young men in the right direction, build positive interactions between students and adults, increase the youths’ confidence level and show them positive ways and alternatives to a variety of situations.
The program is changing lives of our often-misunderstood youth, says Gilkey. While young Black men are often wrongly accused, facing racial profiling in our community, this powerful non-profit leadership development program equips them with the tools needed to become responsible men in their communities.
By teaching diversity, leadership, cultural awareness, coping skills, building self-esteem and discipline, the young men will discover their own strengths and abilities, Gilkey said. Read more

Congresswoman Lee to Host Women’s Tea

Congresswoman Barbara Lee  will host a Women’s Tea fundraiser at Scott’s Seafood Restaurant located at 2 Broadway, Jack London Square, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Lee will be joined at this fundraiser for her re-election campaign by Los Angeles Congresswoman Maxine Waters   and Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey, representing Sonoma and Marin counties, who along with Lee are collectively referred to in Congress as “The Triad” for their strong, joint effort to end the Iraq occupation. The three will discuss their ongoing work to end the war along with other pressing issues.
Nancy Keenan, President of NARAL Pro-Choice America, will also be a special guest and will  address the current status of the pro-choice movement and efforts to defeat Prop 4, the third parental notification ballot initiative in four years.
The cost is $75 per person. To RSVP call 510-839-3100 or e-mail 

Oakland Black Caucus PAC Endorses Kaplan in Race Against Hamill

By Post Staff

The Oakland Black Caucus Political Action Committee has endorsed Rebecca Kaplan for the at-large seat on the Oakland City Council. She is opposed by Kerry Hamill,  member of Oakland Board of Education and a BART manager..
“Rebecca represents a broad cross-section of Oakland and has a proven history of willingness to take action in support of this community,” said Geoffrey Pete, chairperson of the Oakland Black Caucus PAC and owner of Geoffrey’s Inner Circle.
“Oakland is at a crossroads, and we need to take action to turn around our economy, improve public safety and provide healthy neighborhoods,” said, Kaplan who sits on the AC Transit board. “I am grateful for the support of Geoffrey Pete and the Oakland Black Caucus PAC. I know together we can build an Oakland we can all be proud of.” Read more

Faces Around the Bay: Brenda Pringle

Pringle.jpgBrenda Pringle has lived in S.F. for 10 years and attends the Fort Mason Big Book Sale every year.  She is shown here resting after going through the stack of books she selected: mostly political and religious books.  “I took the bus here” she explains, “I have a few health problems which make it harder for me to get around.”
Pringle is retired now, worked for 30+ years in Washington D.C., and chose to return to S.F. because of memories of the beautiful weather, from the years she was stationed  with the Army at Fort Ord. She is opposed to the war in Iraq and says, “I hope Obama will change things in this country.”  Pringle attends Glide Memorial Church.

Photo and text by Barbara Fluhrer.

Shorey: London’s Black Captain

shoreyhouse.jpgThe Shorey home at 1782 8th Street in West Oakland where Booker T. Washington stayed during his visit.

By Mary Rudge
Part 2

Captain William T Shorey and his family lived in an elegant West Oakland Victorian style home with huge rooms and marble baths, at 1782 8th Street. They filled their home with curios and beautiful furnishings brought back from many countries. Prestigious groups of political, civic and social leaders gathered in their home. When Booker T Washington spoke to 5 thousand persons at UC Berkeley, to raise funds for Tuskegee College, ( he received $1000, plus $500 from Mrs Hearst)  he had dinner at Captain Shorey’s home.
In Shorey’s home he, “met 20 colored men of status” and expressed  his  “surprise and pleasure” at meeting with a group “so prosperous, so intelligent, and so well informed not only as to matters pertaining to race in the country as a whole, but particularly as regarding the history and work of Tuskegee.”* Read more

National Green Jobs Day Celebrated

greenjobs.jpgLocal community members and green activists celebrated last Saturday at Mosswood Park.
Photos by Gene Hazzard and graphics by Alapi Bhatt.

By Post Staff

Hundreds of Oaklanders participated Saturday in the National Day of Action for Green Jobs with a concert and rally at Mosswood Park in North Oakland.
The celebration highlighted an ongoing “Green Jobs Now” campaign to create decent jobs in order to end poverty and solve the climate crisis at the same time. The event was organized by the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.
Oakland’s Day of Action was one of nearly 400 similar events in 45 states, according to rally organizers.
“At this very moment, there are millions of people in this country ready to work and countless jobs that need to be done that will strengthen our economy, save lives and protect our planet,” said Ian Kim, Director of the center’s Green-Collar Jobs Campaign. Read more

PIC Receives $2,500 Mini-Grant to Register Young Voters

youngvoters.jpgKenya Holloman registers Sam Habtegeorgis to vote at Green Jobs Day last Saturday at Mosswood Park.

Oakland’s Private Industry Council has received a mini-grant from the San Francisco Foundation to conduct voter education and registration among potential young voters.
“We have a part-time youth person who will register voters in the One-Stop Career Center at 1212 Broadway, and two part-time youth who are going to malls, community colleges, organizations for young people, churches, to the different places where youth are,” said Robin Raveneau, who coordinates the project for PIC. Read more

Captain Shorey Was Front Page News When London Sold Papers

By Mary Rudge
Part 3

Shorey1.jpgThe first and only Black Captain sailing from the West Coast, Captain William T. Shorey, was frequently front page news. Jack London heard Captain Shorey’s stories in person, when Shorey was at home in Oakland, and, from the time he was in the third grade,  Jack sold papers with these stories. Selling newspapers was a way even very young children earned money. In a video display, at the African American Museum and Library, Ida Johnson-Dunson tells that when she, at age 6, with her brother, age 7 lived on Pine Street, they sold newspapers at Pine and 7th Street where the Railroad met the Ferry at the Mole.  Jerri Lange, TV personality and author of “Jerri, a Black Woman in Media” also recounts learning the importance of the media when selling papers as a child.
People, all over California, loved reading about the exploits of  Captain Shorey and his courageous wife and children who went with him on his whale hunting voyages.
Captain Shorey’s daughter, Victoria, at age 9 years old  wrote her own account of going with her family on a whale hunting voyage, describing life on board ship, where they went weeks at a time without seeing land and she missed her friends back in Oakland. She told of the horrible smell as pieces of whale were boiled in huge caldrons to get the oil. It smelled so strong, there was a saying that “ships that could not yet see a whaler could smell one.” Read more

Student Turns Oakland Green, One Tree at a Time

By Ken A. Epstein

greenjobskwame.jpgKwame Davis, 17-year-old junior at Oakland Technical High School, has a reputation for having a green thumb. Maybe that’s because he comes from a family of green thumbs.
His talent for plants is flourishing under the mentorship of Kemba Shakur, Founder and Director of Urban Releaf, a decade old nonprofit that has been working in Oakland and the East Bay for the past decade.
With the help of Shakur, Kwame is learning about horticulture literally from the ground up, planting hundreds of trees in East Bay urban neighborhoods with little or no greenery.
Besides tree planting and maintenance, he conducts inventory and collects data for computerized systems, working closely with UC Davis scientists.
After finishing high school, Kwame plans attend a black collage and major in Urban Forestry or Biology.

EcoVillage Farm Learning Center

ecovillage.jpgFrom Left to Right:   Kenneth Rayford III,  Natasha Zakaria,  Shyaam M. Shabaka, Founder/Director. Photo by Gene Hazzard.

EcoVillage Farm is a year around (four seasons) program, which servers approximately 3,000 people each year with the majority being school age youth, (EcoVillage works with over 20 different schools) parents and other adults from the San Francisco East Bay communities.
For many of these urban youth and some adults, their visit to EcoVillage is a unique experience. Their first visit to a farm, where they are able to collect fresh laid eggs, not to mention that some of the eggs are turquoise in color and laid by chickens from Chile called Arancana. Read more

Faces Around the Bay: Eric James

ericjames.jpgEric (Rick) James is shown here sporting one of his T-Shirts for a Not2Day Party.
James founded Cross Your Tz, 11 years ago, a custom screen printing and embroidery store at 1239 San Pablo Ave in Pinole. “Cross Your Tz is a Christian business”, remarks James. They create your design on T-Shirts, Sweats, Jackets, Hats, etc. for churches, businesses, special events, family reunions, and more.
Questions? Call the shop: (510)741-5411 or visit them on the web:

Black Family Day in the Fillmore a Success

family.jpgMembers of the community celebrate 4th Annual Black Family Day at Margaret Haywood Playground.

By Nikki Jones

Neighborhood residents celebrated Black Family Day in San Francisco’s Fillmore neighborhood on Saturday, September 27th.  Brothers for Change, a community-based organization with a mission to create positive change in the lives of African American men and their families, organized the annual event. A host of local organizations, businesses, and community members co-sponsored the event.  Games for children and families, information booths on employment, healthcare, and housing for adults, as well food and entertainment were provided free of charge. Read more

Africa Mercy is First Hospital Ship With Special Diesel Fuel Conditioner

By Michael Ireland
Chief Correspondent,
ASSIST News Service

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO (ANS) — While the general public is cutting back at the pump and looking for ways to save fuel and maintenance costs, Mercy Ships, which operates the world’s largest charity hospital ship, is no exception.
Mercyship.jpgSkyrocketing diesel fuel prices and increased maintenance costs sent Mercy Ships marine engineering crew looking for answers as the charity relies on donations to bring life-saving healthcare to West African nations.
For the past year, Mercy Ships has tested products by FuelSaver Technologies, Inc., headquartered in Colorado Springs, in an effort to maximize the hospital ship’s fuel efficiency, according to the company.
In turn, those funds could be used to provide more free surgeries to patients in the Liberian port of Monrovia where the ship’s surgeons and crew have docked since last February.
“So far, we’ve achieved a 3 percent improvement in fuel economy this past year and our engineers have noticed less carbon and soot buildup, resulting in less maintenance required,” stated Engineering Superintendent Michel Zandbergen. Read more

Bill Promotes Mental Health Parity and Expands Access

(Washington D.C.) – Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-09) on last week issued the following statement in support of the Wellstone-Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (H.R. 6983), which passed the House by a vote of 376-47:
“As a former psychological social worker, I appreciate the necessity of mental health parity and the significance of this bill,” said Congresswoman Lee. “Many diseases go hand in hand with depression, substance abuse, and a variety of other mental health issues that cannot go untreated. For example, when a person is diagnosed with cancer or HIV, they and their families go through a range of emotional responses. To treat only the physical signs of illness is to ignore the broad ranging emotional implications of a disease. Read more

Marcus Book Stores October Calendar

Saturday, October 11th, 6:30 p.m.
Oakland Store
Jewell Parker  Rhodes
Yellow Moon, A Novel

In Rhodes’ superb sequel to 2006’s Voodoo Season, a wazimamoto, or African vampire, “a ghost, a creature from the past” stalks Dr. Marie Laveau, a 21st century medical doctor, modern voodoo practitioner, and descendant of the legendary Voodoo Queen of New Orleans. Haunted by the unquiet spirits of the vampire’s victims, the young doctor vows to stop it with the help of her new boyfriend, a  New Orleans police detective, and her boss, Dr. Louis DuLac. As the blood of the victims nourishes the vampire so it can completely assume human form, Marie must summon all her powers to vanquish it. This hypnotic thriller is a great read!
Read more

Lee Commemorates Hispanic Heritage Month

Congresswoman Barbara Lee has issued a statement celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, which began Sept. 15 and ends Oct. 15.
“Hispanic Heritage Month is about much more than the acknowledgment of the 45.5 millions of Latinos who reside in this country,” she said.
“Hispanic Heritage Month is about recognizing the obstacles overcome by this community, and their unique contributions to this nation that are a proud part of our heritage. This month also celebrates the anniversary of independence for several Latin American countries, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico and Chile.” Read more

West Oakland Cultural Mecca Struggles to Survive

By Ken A. Epstein

Diallo.jpgThe Black New World Social Aid and Pleasure Club, a centerpiece of West Oakland’s cultural and economic renaissance, is appealing for help from members of the community to avoid foreclosure.
The club, located steps away from the Bay at 836 Pine St., was closed in February by City inspectors, citing building code violations that make it illegal to operate as a cabaret. Since then, the venue has been unable to host events that generate funds it needs to support itself and pay for major renovations.
“It’s an ongoing issue trying to keep the thing together. Although there’s no income, we still have to meet our mortgage,” said Marcel Diallo, a businessman and artist who is the driving force behind the Black New World and the West Oakland’s Village Bottoms Cultural District.
The Black New World is a key to the area’s cultural and economic revival, said Diallo.  “It’s serves as the town hall, the anchor. It’s the most famous place – if you go to New York, they know the Black New World.”
Centered on Pine Street between 11th and 8th streets. the Village Bottoms over the past few years has become the scene of housing renovations and incubation of a number of  African American-owned restaurants and shops. Read more