Greater Metro

Advocate touts benefits of school choice

Virginia Walden Ford knows a thing or two about school choice. A native of Little Rock, she was one of 130 African-American students handpicked to desegregate the city's high schools in the 1960's.

Last week (Sept. 20), Ford was in Memphis and center stage as the speaker at a luncheon fashioned for a discussion on opportunity scholarships and school choice.


New state director for Zeta Phi Beta

Memphian Donna R. Williams was recently appointed state director of Tennessee for Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. by the sorority's 24th International President, Mary Breaux Wright.


‘100 Smiles’ vs breast cancer

Audria "Nubia" Arnold, CEO of Nubia Creative Images, is using her creative eye and cutting edge artistry to promote breast cancer awareness.

NCI will present its first 100 Smiles Go Pink Breast Awareness Campaign for Breast Cancer on Oct. 5-6 at Nubia Creative Images, 4466 Elvis Presley Blvd, Ste 210.


Ministers, Cohen forge coalition to re-elect President

President Barack Obama unleashed a nationwide fury of protest and disapproval from ministers and pastors, many of them African Americans, with his public endorsement of same-sex marriage. Many encouraged their congregations to sit it out on Election Day and to ask family and friends to do the same.


Homicide by way of gun

Guns-1Report #1209010656ME – translation: another homicide by way of gun.

The Memphis Police Department issued a release on Wednesday night (Sept. 19), with it reaching the newsroom of The New Tri-State Defender at 7:58:52 p.m. It was short and painfully familiar, ending with the notation that an investigation is ongoing and a plea from homicide investigator for "someone to come forward with information to help solve this crime."


‘Memphis State Eight’ take U of M salute in stride

msu8Each of them – all in their 70s – sat at a table with family and friends wearing a white flower pinned to their suits and dresses.

Eight friendly smiles greeted students and guests in the University Center at the University of Memphis, a building, had it existed 53 years ago, they would not have been allowed to visit.


NBA star brings no-‘text’ message to Mitchell High

notextgroupHundreds of Mitchell High School juniors and seniors will never forget last Thursday when alumnus and NBA great Thaddeus Young came home bearing spectacular gifts and a life-saving message: "Texting & Driving...It Can Wait."

"Thaddeus laid some texting-while-driving facts on the kids," said Chuck Thomas III, AT&T's regional director of External and Legislative Affairs.


LEGACY: Rev. Ezekiel Bell

Bell funeralThere may never be statues or large public celebrations to commemorate him, but if the religions are right in teaching us that there is a place where good works are rewarded, there should be a great banquet planned for the Rev. Ezekiel Bell.

Born in Clarksdale, Miss. in 1935, Rev. Bell was one who made it his mission to dedicate his life to pushing his people forward.

Like his compatriot Joe Crittenden, whose life was chronicled in The New Tri State Defender's May 17, 2012 issue, even in his 80s Mr. Bell kept pushing forward.


LEGACY: The Rev. Dr. Herbert Eugene Davenport Jr.

davenport legacyDena taught him how to text and email and even how to do the "Wobble."

Visa took the position that he always was right – part of the territory when you are "a daddy's girl."

Both – Visa Davenport Harper and Dena Davenport McNeal (Terrian) – were referring to their father, the late Rev. Dr. Herbert Eugene Davenport Jr., whose life was celebrated at Greater Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, 1098 S. Wellington St., last Saturday (Sept. 15).


BRIEFS & THINGS: ‘411 on Sex’ teen Conference is set

For the second year, the medical, dental, pharmacy and nursing students at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center have joined with the Shelby County Health Department and other local organizations to host the "411 on Sex" Teen Conference. The community-based event is set for Saturday (Sept. 22) at the University of Tennessee Alumni Center, 800 Madison Ave., starting with registration at 8:30 a.m., and ending at 2:30 p.m. It is designed to make parents and high school students more aware of critical issues related to "sexting," human trafficking, pregnancy prevention, and teen dating violence.


Back to the future for Dr. Herenton

In August 2013, the Thurgood Marshall Academy will open as a Memphis Public Charter School and a helping hand for youth in the custody or care of Memphis-Shelby County Juvenile Court. It will have a very familiar local imprint.

"My hands – my personal and professional hands – will be all over the program in terms of day-to-day monitoring and supervision," said Dr. Willie W. Herenton, former Memphis City Schools (MCS) superintendent and Memphis' longest-serving mayor.


Peer-powered Prestige Awards salute teachers

PrestigeTeach-1by Bernadette Shinault-Davis
Special to The New Tri-State Defender

"I teach. I am leading the change," is one of the many slogans for the Memphis City School's initiative to recognize and celebrate educators who are making a difference in the Memphis City School system. Teachers nominate and vote for their colleagues based on the quality of their day-to-day contributions to teaching, learning and student achievement.

"One of the things the campaign strives to do is to bring back the prestige to the teaching profession," said Dr. Sherrish Holloman, MCS's teacher support coordinator.


‘Gas For Guns’ ambitious strike against homicides

Major players in Saturday's Gas for Guns event have high hopes for a decline in homicides and gun violence on Memphis streets. Memphis Mayor AC Wharton is particularly optimistic.

"While it is understood that one campaign like this will not rid our streets completely of gun violence, we feel that the best way to reduce this very critical issue is to hit it from all sides," said Mayor Wharton. "Together, with some of the wonderful initiatives by Memphis Police Chief Toney Armstrong and MPD, we can make our streets safer for everyone."