From December 2010

Evans Miracle Shot Wins the Game

Sacramento, CA – It looked like another typical night for the Kings.  An up and down game that usually ended with a loss.  But tonight was different, Tyreke Evans coming off a thirty point game two nights ago continued his dominance in leading the Kings to their first win since defeating the Washington Wizards.

Last years rookie of the year resurface when Evans came alive late in the fourth with a steal and a dunk to give Sacramento a one point lead over the Memphis Grizzlies.  But O.J. Mayo changed that quickly with a jump shot to take back the lead.  As the clock begins to run out, Tyreke sprints up court and launches a miracle three point shot at the buzzer to beat the Grizzlies 100-98.  An unbelievable win for the Kings and an incredible ending to a long losing streak. Read more

Black AIDS Coalition Presents “Fashion Forward”

By Jesse
Brooks

Melinda Pierson Photo by Tiana Sisay

The Black Coalition on AIDS (BCA) on the eve of its 25-year celebration presents “Fashion Forward ” in San Francisco.
The event is the fourth in a series of health and wellness community meetings entitled “No Regrets: Black Women Addressing Our Own Health and Wellness.” State Senator Mark Leno will present a proclamation to BCA honoring its work in the community.
The No Regret series, scheduled every third month, is designed to empower women in San Francisco with health information and resources, helping them become health leaders and advocates.
Disproportionately high rates of STDs and HIV in the Black community create the likelihood of being exposed to an infected person much higher for Black women. This means that even though Black women are engaging in fewer risk behaviors than White women, in order to not get infected, they have to do much more to protect themselves. Read more

Evans big night not enough for win

Sacramento, CA – Losing has become consistent for the Sacramento Kings.  It’s definitely not something they want to get used to as they continue to find ways to overcome it.  But when the Los Angeles Clippers came to town they handed them their twenty-third loss of the season.

It came down to Tyreke Evans at the free throw line, he was fouled with 1.9 seconds left in the game after attempting to make a three-point shot.  Evans made the first two free throws but missed the last one for the tie.  DeMarcus Cousins rebounded the ball and missed the tip-in.  Although Evans had a big night it wasn’t enough to prevent the 100-99 loss against the Clippers. Read more

Evans big night not enough for win

Sacramento, CA – Losing has become consistent for the Sacramento Kings.  It’s definitely not something they want to get used to as they continue to find ways to overcome it.  But when the Los Angeles Clippers came to town they handed them their twenty-third loss of the season.

It came down to Tyreke Evans at the free throw line, he was fouled with 1.9 seconds left in the game after attempting to make a three-point shot.  Evans made the first two free throws but missed the last one for the tie.  DeMarcus Cousins rebounded the ball and missed the tip-in.  Although Evans had a big night it wasn’t enough to prevent the 100-99 loss against the Clippers. Read more

Married Women May Still Risk HIV Infection

By Jesse
Brooks

Oprah Winfrey with half brother Jeffrey who died of AIDS in 1989.

While marriage offers hundreds of benefits to couples, there is one advantage it cannot guarantee – immunity from HIV.
Each year, African Americans account for almost 70 percent of newly diagnosed HIV cases among women. Unprotected sex with an HIV positive man is the most common way for Black women to become infected with the disease.
The possibility is startling: if a man is the woman’s husband, her assumption that marriage equals monogamy could cost her life. Women’s transmission routes are limited to IV drug use and sex with a man.
“The down low” (DL) is the phrase that has been coined to describe the behavior of men who have wives or girlfriends and are also having sex with men (MSM). The practice reached national consciousness in 2004 when Oprah Winfrey interviewed J.L. King, who wrote the book “On the Down: A Journey into the Lives of Straight Black Men Who Sleep With Men,” talking about his own experience as someone living on the DL. Read more

MLB Wants African-American Presence to Grow

Jimmie Lee Solomon

Jimmie Lee Solomon knows all about the dwindling number of African Americans in baseball. He acknowledges that it’s a concern and understands that it could be a while before change in the opposite direction is noticeable.
He believes that Major League Baseball is doing everything it can to reverse the trend. But he is also quick to point out an obvious yet often-ignored fact.
“Baseball is more diverse than ever,” said Solomon, MLB’s executive vice president of baseball development. “Forty percent of our players are from diverse backgrounds, from non-Caucasian backgrounds. So that’s a good thing. But when the number of African Americans is declining, and you have areas in our country that are either underserved or unserved, now that is a problem.”
In 2011, MLB once again will honor the history of African Americans in baseball – a sport seen by many as a true pioneer in Civil Rights – by staging its fifth Civil Rights Game in Atlanta, the central hub of the Civil Rights Movement. (The date has not yet been announced.) Read more

Stride Center Graduates Look Forward to Tech Jobs

Stride Center graduates

While the Bay Area employment market that remains dismal for many job seekers, graduates of the Stride Center are optimistic about future their prospects for finding work.
The Stride Center on Dec. 16 celebrated the largest graduating class in its 10-year history with over 200 graduates at training sites around the Bay Area, including two in Oakland.
“The information technology field offers the promise of good pay, sought-after credentials, career mobility and jobs in every sector of the economy,” said Stride’s executive director Barrie Hathaway. Read more

Discovering The Largest Park District In The Nation, In Your Back Yard

Healthy Parks, Healthy People

Do you know that there are over 100,000 acres of natural parks and wilderness in the two counties of Alameda and Contra Costa in the East Bay?
The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) manages 65 regional parks in these two counties. Among the regional parks are Tilden, Chabot and Del Valle. The regional parks include wilderness, shorelines, lakes, farms and recreation areas, making EBRPD the largest and most diverse park district in the nation.
“A mile from my house in this big urban city, I can be out in this deep forest and be close to nature and the quiet,” says Wendy Tokuda, news anchor for CBS5, describing Redwood Regional Park in Oakland.
Established in 1934, in the heart of the Great Depression, the Park District serves more than 2.4 million people across 40 cities. The regional parks include 1,150 miles of trails, 11 freshwater swimming areas, boating facilities and lakes for fishing. Other outdoor activities include picnicking, hiking, biking, golfing, horse riding and camping in the 235 family campsites.
“The topography of the parks are vivid and the options for outdoor recreation facilities are endless,” notes Pat O’Brien, General Manager of EBRPD. “For every mood you’ve got, we have a park.”
There are nine interpretive and education centers with naturalist programs for the public to learn about nature, geology, history and wildlife. For example, Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont exhibits agricultural practices from the 1870s and Black Diamond Mines in Antioch offers tours to learn about geology and mine workings. Also, set in beautiful natural surroundings are several historic indoor/outdoor facilities for events like weddings, parties and business meetings.
In October, the Park District was awarded a $10.2 million TIGER II grant by the Department of Transportation to complete gaps in its 175-mile paved Regional Trail network (which includes the Iron Horse Trail and the San Francisco Bay Trail). When completed, the trail system will offer a healthy transportation alternative for daily commuters. The Park District also recently joined 35 countries to participate in the Healthy Parks Healthy People movement founded by Parks Victoria, Australia. This movement promotes parks as an integral part of the environment, community and individual health.
For Oakland resident Miranda Wilson, a radio host, the parks provide a sanctuary to reconnect with nature and herself. “When you look up at the trees, standing there reaching up for the sun, you feel like your spirit is also looking up and dark days don’t seem to be so dark.”
Discover activities and nature programs in our Regional in Nature Activity Guide which comes out bimonthly – 6 times a year – on our website www.ebparks.org. For General Information, call 1-888-327-2757.

Lee Backs Nuclear Arms Agreement

Rep. Barbara Lee

Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) is supporting the U.S. Senate’s ratification of the nuclear arms control agreement known as the New START Treaty.
”I applaud President Obama for his diligence in negotiating this agreement, and my congressional colleagues in the Senate for their support of the New Start Treaty,” Lee said.
“The treaty lays important groundwork for renewed international cooperation to build confidence, protect and strengthen the international nuclear nonproliferation regime and bring us closer to the realization of a future free of the threat of nuclear weapons,” she said. Read more

Job Training Programs Receive $5,000 Surprise Donations

From left to right: Dominique Drakeford, Gonzalo Hernandez, Chann Mouv, Ray Leon, Michael Baines, Regina Jackson,Trip Belote, Fred Frierson, Trevon Galloway, Anana Scott, Ontario Hampton and Dwight Akins. Photo by Gene Hazzard.

The East Oakland Youth Development Center (EOYDC), directed by Regina Jackson, and the Cypress Mandela Training Center, headed by Art Shanks, are the surprise recipients of a $5,000 cash donation to each organization from Doppelmayr Cable Car Company.
The two agencies, which have a long-standing commitment to providing youth services and employment opportunities, received the donations last week when a group of business leaders toured their facilities and presented them with the money. Read more

Prison Population Falls for First Time in 50 Years

New figures released by the Bureau of Justice Statistics show that the total corrections population in the United States declined last year for the first time since 1980.
The 7.2 million persons under supervision – in prison, jail, or under probation or parole supervision – declined by 48,800, or 0.7 percent from the previous year.
The new report also shows the first decline in the overall state prison population since 1977 – 24 states measured prisoner reductions during 2009. This is in marked contrast to the federal prison system, which grew by 3.4 percent. Read more

Former Employee Becomes First BART Board President

Bob Franklin

The Bay Area Rapid Transit Board of Directors has unanimously elected Bob Franklin to serve as its new president. He is the first former BART employee to become board president.
The board also unanimously elected Board Member John McPartland to serve as vice president.
Both assumed their posts after the board voted at its  Dec. 16  meeting at BART Headquarters in Oakland.  The nine-member board is made up of three elected directors from each of the district’s three counties: San Francisco, Alameda and Contra Costa. Read more

Charles Peoples Creates Customized Negro Leagues Jackets in Oakland

By Carla
Thomas

Charles Peoples, Sr., is making waves in the apparel industry in an unassuming building at 1036 East 8th St. in Oakland, which houses a 4500-square-foot manufacturing plant and silk screen facility.

Dynamic local community leader Charles Peoples, Sr., is making waves in the apparel industry in an unassuming building at 1036 East 8th St. in Oakland, which houses a 4500-square-foot manufacturing plant and silk screen facility.
Well-known as an avid golfer and director of the annual Peoples Pro-Am Celebrity Golf Tournaments, Peoples has spent more than 20 years giving back to the community and provides millions of dollars in financial scholarships to Bay Area college bound-students with the support of celebrities such as Clem Daniels, Bill Russell, Raymond Chester and Joe Morgan. Read more

Emmelene “Mamalene” Thomas, 100

Emmelene “Mamalene” Thomas

Emmelene “Mamalene” Thomas died of natural causes on Dec. 12, in Oakland, 100 years old at the time of her passing.
Thomas was born on Dec. 26, 1909 to Walter and Harriett Johnson in Baton Rouge, LA.   She married Joseph Thornton, Sr., in New Orleans in 1929.  To this union five children were born.
She moved to Oakland in 1950, divorced, and married Ulysses A. (U.A.) Thomas. The couple enjoyed a loving union until her husband’s death in 1998.
She was preceded in death by three of her children: Norma Thornton-Martin in 1949, Joseph Thornton in1981 and Walter Thornton in 1997.  Thomas is survived by her children Byron Thornton, Dr. Shirley Thornton and her stepdaughter Marion Thomas Jiles; her grandchildren, Rene Martin, David and Michele Thornton, Joseph and Ricky Thornton, and Delra Hayes; 11 great-grandchildren; 6 great-great grandchildren, her daughter-in-law Bess Thornton; and daughter-in-law and caretaker Francoise Thornton; her surrogate grand-daughter and loving friend Zakiya Jendayi; and her caretaker Donald Toles. Read more

Cornerstone Gives Backpacks and Christmas Dinners

By Godfrey Lee

Top row from left: Terrie Green giving backpack to Learl McRoy, Gracie Stover, Hazel Goff, Deanna Durbin, Tori Shavers giving backpack to Annie Small. Second row from left: Christopher Gonzales receiving his backpack, backpacks in the church dinning room, Aaliyah Foster & Tori Shavers (not shown) giving backpack to Wilma Mears and holding her dogs, Willie Valentine. Bottom row: Shawanna Blakemore, Aalijah Foster, Mattie Coleman, Ruth Nenaber, Gerald Ingram Jr., Margo Pipkin, Aaliyah Foster, Tori Shavers, Kyesha Shavers, and Juanita Edwards. Photos by Fred Harris and Godfrey Lee

Many people in Marin City enjoyed a delicious afternoon meal of ham and chicken last Monday at the Cornerstone Community Church of God in Christ, which provided Christmas dinners to anyone in the community who showed up.
Black backpacks, filled with food, were also available at the Health and Wellness Clinic near the church.
For the past three years, Cornerstone Community COGIC, at 626 Drake Ave. in Marin City, has prepared free meals and for community members. In addition, about 40 take-out meals were prepared the same afternoon for seniors, the sick, and shut-ins in the community.
Those who helped out at the event included First Lady Carolyn Logan and her son, David, who warmly welcomed and served the visitors. June Farmer, Lillie Richardson, Charles Richardson, Shaunna Boykins, and Fay Griffin prepared the meals. Many young people helped to distribute the meals.
Fred Harris, a local photographer in San Rafael, took pictures at the event. He can be reached at (415) 459-0596 or fredharrisphoto@comcast.net.

Sheriff Santa Gives Out Toys in Marin City

Top picture - front row from left): Jill Peeler, Peggy Harold, Lt. Cheryl Fisher; back row: Sean-Tyler Crusto, Amada Turmankh, Bryan Cardenas, Cassandra Ruirk, Trevion Clark, Jomar Hernandez, Selena Marmolejo, Deputy Dobbins (Santa Claus), Treasure Haines, Nancy Hoang, unidentified boy, Rachel Perez, Meloni Page, Jeremiah Moultrie, Antonio Swan, Shahyan Hansig, Cameron McDonald. Bottom left picture from left: Jill Peeler, Peggy Harold, Deputy Dobbins (Santa Claus), Paul Simpson, Meloni Page, Lt. Cheryl Fisher. Bottom right picture : various children visiting Santa and selecting their toys. Photos by Godfrey Lee and Marin City Sherrif Department.

Santa Claus visited the Marin County Sheriff’s Substation in Marin City last Friday to give toy to children in the Southern Marin County.
About 200 children and their parents came out in the rain to have a chance to meet Santa and to receive a toy. The Sheriff’s Department has been giving toys to the community for the last three years. This year, a record number of children showed up..
Children at Manzanita Children Center also had a chance to meet Santa and receive presents.
Playing Santa for the Sheriff’s  Department was Deputy Dobbins, who wore the rquired red suit and beard. Toy donations came from employees at Human Resources Dispatch-Marin City Substation, San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program, the Deputy Sheriff’s Association and  Marin County Jail Employees.

Marin City Celebrates Kwanzaa

Friends of Marin City will have their annual Kwanzaa celebration Thursday, Dec. 30, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Friends of Marin City will have their annual Kwanzaa celebration Thursday, Dec. 30, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Manzanita Cultural Center, 630 Drake Ave. in Marin City.
Donald Muhammad will be Master of Ceremonies, and performers will include Destiny, Harpist from the Hood; Ms. Kelly Thomas, Marin City Vocalist; Leslie Carters and the African Queen Dance Ensemble; and Huff n Stuff.
While food is provided, Kwanzaa is also about sharing. Those who attend are asked to consider making and bringing the most special and healthy dish that only they can make.
For more information, contact Donald Muhammad at (415) 724-9269 or Melvin “Maalak” Atkins at (415) 879-0229 or by email at melatks@aol.com.

Rwanda Asante Children’s Choir Performing Stars

Asante Children’s Choir that will perform at Cornerstone Community Church, 626 Drake Avenue, Marin City on Friday, Jan. 7, 7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Africa Mission Alliance (AMA) will present the Asante Children’s Choir’s “Sound of Hope” concert Friday, Jan. 7, 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., at Cornerstone Community Church, 626 Drake Ave. in Marin City.
Asante Children’s Choir is made up of 24 boys and girls from Rwanda, between the ages of 8 and 15 years old. Their stories of Rwanda are brilliantly told through rich traditional music, costumes and dancing.
The choir is on tour to raise awareness of the desperate plight of Rwanda’s orphans and widows. They sing as ambassadors for all of their friends back home in need of the same opportunities that have been given to them.
For more information on the choir go to www.asantechoir.org.

Mayor Quan’s Schedule

January 2, 5-9 p.m., Pre-Inauguration Celebration at Chabot Space & Science Center, 10000 Skyline Boulevard, Family event, food, exhibits, music. $10 donation
RSVP- 614-301-5163 or inauguralcelebration2011@gmail.com
January 3—8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.   History Walk, Swearing –in Ceremony, City Hall Open House
8:30 a.m. Pacific Renaissance Plaza, 9th & Webster Streets Read more

Black Builder Loses Third Street Library Project

By Lee Hubbard

Willie Ratcliff

In a strange turn of events, a San Francisco Black contractor, who had been awarded the right build the Bay View Hunters Point library at Third and Revere Streets, lost the Department of Public works contract over a minor infraction.
Willie Ratcliff, owner of Liberty Builders, had been awarded the $5.1 million dollar bid to build the library, the first contract awarded to a Black general contractor in over a decade.
But two months after the contract was awarded, it was rescinded  and awarded to KCK builders, when Ratcliff submitted his commercial auto policy a day late after the city notified him that it was missing.
“They had no reason to rescind the offer,” said Ratcliff.  “We had a good bond offer, and everything was in order except the insurance certificate.  When I found out it was missing, I had the insurance company send the certificate to the city, but they sent it in a day late.” Read more

San Francisco Celebrates Kwanzaa

By Lee Hubbard

Sitting, left to right: Brotha Clint, Jackie Wright, Malik Senefu; Group, standing at left: Saula Gonzales, Steven Loyd, Deshawna Whitfield; back row: Marlena Younger, Jazmine Thorne, Daizanae Woods; Group, standing at right: Deshun Luckett, Jose Gonzales, Adrian Williams, Exec. Dir of Village Project, Elizabeth Jackson of the Western Addition Family Resource Center; Back row: Johnnae Sanders, Camile Dawkins-Mayor’s office of Neighborhood Services, and Marchel Earden-Smith.

The fifth annual Kwanzaa celebration sponsored by the Village Projec will be taking place Dec. 26 through Jan. 1 throughout San Francisco.
In years past, the Village Project’s events took place in the Western Addition area, but according to Adrian Williams, the project’s executive director, Black people throughout the city are feeling a part of the Kwanzaa experience.
“Kwanzaa is about family, heritage and culture,” said Williams.  “These things are essential to the survival of the Black community in San Francisco.”
This year’s theme, “Uniting to Strengthen Families and Communities,” emphases the importance of the seven principles of Kwanzaa, she said.
Created by Dr. Maulana Karenga in 1966, Kwanzaa is celebrated by more than 30 million people of African descent worldwide, over seven days, from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1. Each of the days of Kwanzaa is dedicated to one of seven basic principles. Read more

Miracle of Christmas “Love Conquers Hate”

By Dr.W. Hazaiah Williams

Dr. W. Hazaiah Williams

The miracle of Christmas is the message that God is located where you sit, not locked up in the law and the legalisms of organized religion, but trapped in your body.  This event — Christmas — took God out of the sky.
Before the Christmas event, we met a fearsome God of Moses; we turned aside from the Holy of Holies of Isaiah. Even though we saw the tender vision of the Shepherd from the Psalms, we now go beyond even that.
As we leave the manger and walk through the developing life of the person of Jesus, we find that the Christmas promise is the promise of a life that, by its own commitment – and therefore by its unity with the Eternal, breaks through the Holy of Holies and makes us now face the reality, that awful reality, that the Holy of Holies may have something to do with us. Read more

The Taste of West County Goodness

Community-based non- profit honors resident, community leaders for good deeds

Executive Director Lynette Gibson McElhaney and Board Members: Maxine Reynolds; Lena Robinson, Treasurer; Michael Vukelich, Secretary; Niels Povlsen, President.

Together with Congressman George Miller, Neighborhood Housing Services of the East Bay [NHS] honored four community leaders during its holiday mixer last week.
The theme, “A Taste of West County Goodness,” was chosen to highlight local eateries, good businesses and the good work that is happening in low- income communities despite current economic conditions.
The awards ceremony was hosted by Contra Costa College (CCC).
CCC President McKinley Williams congratulated the awardees and said his college “recognizes that the health of the college is tied to the health of our community.  When people have stable housing, they are then in a position to think about higher education for themselves or their children.  This is why we are pleased to support the work of NHS.” Read more

Miracle of Christmas “Love Conquers Hate”

By Dr.W. Hazaiah Williams

The miracle of Christmas is the message that God is located where you sit, not locked up in the law and the legalisms of organized religion, but trapped in your body.  This event — Christmas — took God out of the sky.
Before the Christmas event, we met a fearsome God of Moses; we turned aside from the Holy of Holies of Isaiah. Even though we saw the tender vision of the Shepherd from the Psalms, we now go beyond even that. Read more

Acts Full Gospel School to Teach Chinese

By Gregory
Taylor

Starting 2011 off with a bang, Acts Full Gospel School will add a Chinese language pilot program to its K to 3rd grade school curriculum.  Acts, a leader of many innovations, will be the first African American Church to implement a Chinese language program.
Through the dedication and astute efforts of Dr. Doris Limbrick and Acts Christian Academy’s Principal Stephanie Davis, the pilot program will consist of 15 students ranging in ages from 5 to 8 years old.  The lessons will be held after school twice a week for three months.
The classes will familiarize students with the four tones of Mandarin, the counting system, initial and final pronunciations, and character pinyin recognition.  Read more