Six women whose work embodies the mission of the Women's Foundation for a Greater Memphis will be honored at the group's Annual Legends Award Reception on Tuesday (April 16).
The Women's Foundation for a Greater Memphis (WFGM) was founded 18 years ago. It's mission is to "encourage philanthropy and foster leadership among women and support programs that enable women and children to reach their full potential."
This year's honorees are:
Joyce Glasper has a sense of what families want and need when a loved one nears the end of life. She shares that information regularly, just as she did at Greater Lakeview Missionary Baptist Church's Community Awareness Day last Saturday (April 6).
Glasper reaches out to those in need through Crossroads Hospice. She was among the service providers extending information during the awareness event held at the church at 191 East Holmes Road, where the Rev. Joe E. Hayes is pastor.
In her exchanges, Glasper emphasized the importance of making hospice patients comfortable. She also talked about helping families understand the need to let relatives in hospice choose to do things that are really special to them.
The Achieve! Town Hall was a first step in an effort to bridge the gap between those facing decisions about school choice and the information they need to make good decisions. It included a panel discussion that probed issues related to school choice. (Photo: Shirley Jackson)
by Karanja A. Ajanaku
Some see school choice as a new arrival. Others see it as old as education itself. The extremes suggest the need for dialogue and that’s what the Achieve! Town Hall delivered at The Magnet in the Soulsville community last Saturday, March 30.
Hosted by The New Tri-State Defender, in partnership with New America Media, the forum featured a panel of school leaders, educators and advocates. They were guided through a discussion moderated by TSD President/Publisher, Bernal E. Smith II.
The panelists were: Kevin Woods, commissioner, Shelby County Board of Education; David Hill, director of Academic Operations, Diocese of Memphis Catholic Schools; Ginger Spickler, communications coordinator, Memphis Opportunity Scholarship Trust (MOST); James Alexander, director, Memphis Academy of Health Sciences Charter School; and Keith Williams, president of the Memphis Education Association.
A billing for the evening read: "Mountaintop Speech Commemoration." It was a summons to gather back at Mason Temple, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his last oration – often simply called "The Mountaintop Speech" – on April 3, 1968.
Forty-five years had elapsed since Dr. King gave the prophetic speech that eerily seemed to foreshadow his death. That came the next evening after he was felled by an assassin's bullet while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel.
So the Memphis-area community – joined by numerous others from various places around the nation – showed up Wednesday night. They answered the call amplified by the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees, the union that long has represented Memphis's sanitation workers, the group that Dr. King died supporting.
Where were you in 1967 and on April 4, 1968? We must not ever forget our history, and if you are young, then put the stress on this notion: "We must learn of history."
Many of our leading ministers – both black reverends and white reverends – were maced downtown in 1967 while supporting the strike by sanitation workers. Even at that time we had some people who tried to do what was right and just for all the people.
The Memphis sanitation workers were an integrated group. There were some white workers who drove the trucks and supervised the black workers. The black workers could not go into the sanitation barn where the white workers ate lunch. They had to stay outside in the rain on rainy days and sometimes they would take shelter in the trucks to eat their lunch and keep the rain off.
As arduous tasks go, selecting only 50 honorees for the 6th annual presentation of The New Tri-State Defender's Women of Excellence ranks right up there.
The selections now have been made and the list of honorees for 2013 is complete, with the Women of Excellence (WOE) Champagne Brunch and Awards Celebration set for 10 a.m. Saturday, April 27 at the Memphis Botanic Gardens, 750 Cherry Road.
"We had another phenomenal response from the community this year with over 100 nominations," said Bernal E. Smith II, President/Publisher of The New Tri-State Defender.
At The Soulsville Charter School, the shared focus is on preparing the students for success in college and beyond.
Acceptance letters – dozens of them – help build the case for mission accomplished. This year, each senior in the graduating class has just such a letter. It's the second consecutive year that every senior has been accepted to college, all of them to four-year programs. The details show many of the students headed to some of the most prestigious colleges and universities in the country, and many with substantial scholarships.
"Each of the school's classrooms is themed around a college or university and on most mornings this time of year, we announce college acceptance letters over the intercom," said NeShante Brown, executive director of The Soulsville Charter School (TSCS).