Category: Lifestyle Written by Courier Newsroom
SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS—From left: Michelle Outcalt; Juel Smith; Kiya Tomlin, Leadership Achievement award winner; Rufus Burnett Jr.; Florence Saint-Jean with Chuck Cooper III. (Photos by Rossano P. Stewart)
The Chuck Cooper Foundation awarded its first scholarships in higher education to honor the legacy of Chuck Cooper, the first African-American drafted into the NBA, who afterward leveraged his graduate work into a career of public service. The five students receiving the scholarships were recognized at a luncheon, Feb. 22, along with Mike and Kiya Tomlin, the recipients of the third annual Career Achievement in Leadership, Diversity and Community Service Award.
As a Duquesne University student athlete, Cooper was drafted by the Boston Celtics in 1950. After a six-year NBA career, he went on to earn a master’s degree in social work from the University of Minnesota in 1961. He began his public service as the Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Pittsburgh, and then with Pittsburgh National Bank, the predecessor to PNC Bank. He worked as the bank’s Urban Affairs Officer, spearheading affirmative action programs and community development projects.
“Mike and Kiya Tomlin have done outstanding work in our community and are great stewards of Chuck Cooper’s legacy,” said Sy Holzer, Western Pennsylvania regional president, PNC Bank, the presenting sponsor of the Chuck Cooper luncheon. “Chuck was a talented leader and role model in all aspects in his life. PNC supports the Cooper Foundation’s mission as it awards its first scholarships to deserving graduate level students in the region.”
In addition, PNC provided a $5,000 scholarship which the Cooper Foundation awarded to Rufus Burnett, Jr. for study at the McAnulty Graduate School of Liberal Arts at Duquesne University. Additional scholarship winners for study at Duquesne are:
•Juel Smith, $3,000, School of Education Instructional Technology and Leadership
•Florence St. Jean, $1,000, School of Education
•Michelle Outcalt, $1,000, School of Leadership and Professional Advancement
•Candice Aston, $1,000, PhD in Philosophy
“We are extremely proud to award scholarships to these five highly deserving students,” said Chuck Cooper III, president of the Chuck Cooper Foundation and son of the late professional athlete. “This group exemplifies the type of dedication to academic excellence and community service that my father was so passionate about throughout his life. Helping these students to further their academic careers in order to achieve their professional goals is at the heart of the mission of the Cooper Foundation.”
Additional sponsors include Pittsburgh Steelers, UPMC Health Plan and Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney, PC.
PNC’s support for the Chuck Cooper Foundation is the centerpiece of its Black History Month celebration in Pittsburgh. “Diversity is a core value at PNC,” said PNC’s Holzer. “Recognizing national history and heritage month celebrations help to acknowledge the many contributions of the diverse customers and communities where employees work and live.”
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 March 2013 14:26
Category: Lifestyle Written by Courier Newsroom
HOMETOWN HEROES—From left: Sgt. Patrick Manning, Larry Richert, Summer Tissue, Bill Neal, Jamie Holmes and Paul Shields.
NewsRadio 1020 KDKA Morning Host Larry Richert hosted the Larry Richert Honors Hometown Heroes event, March 7, at the Lexus Club at PNC Park.
Legendary Bruno Sammartino, who will be inducted into the Wrestling Hall of Fame in April, served as the keynote speaker, in addition to retired Army Ranger and Captain Sean Parnell, author of “Outlaw Platoon,” serving as the guest speaker.
Larry’s Hometown Heroes honored five ordinary individuals in the community who have done extraordinary things. Honorees were: Jamie Holmes for awarding “dream” opportunities to those living with medical conditions; Sergeant Patrick Manning for restoring a youth baseball field in Penn Hills; William R. Neal Jr. for building programs that aid disadvantaged youth and others in finding employment opportunities; Summer Tissue for her work in sending packages to deployed Soldiers and Marines; and Paul Shields for helping his neighbors escape a fire in their home in Ross Township the day after Thanksgiving. Each hero will receive a $1000 donation to a charity of their choice.
Neal is a long time columnist of the New Pittsburgh Courier and Founder and CEO of Champion Enterprises.
“I was overwhelmed when I was informed that several hundred people were nominated and I was one of five finalist,” Neal said. “I am extremely gratified that the work we have done have been well received. And it’s important to note that Champion Enterprises is the proverbial village that raises a child. It takes a lot of people to make it work.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 March 2013 14:24
Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
A few years ago I ran across the Big Black Book of Web Sites. It was actually an article in Essence Magazine on the best sites for your every need. Of course I saved it because there seemed to be so many web sites that I would want to visit and share with the readers of the New Pittsburgh Courier. Here are some of the best of the best:
In health and wellness
Calorieking.com—do you want to know how many grams of fat were in that KFC meal you just ate? Get the 411 here.
Letsmove.gov—the First Lady’s site details how to eat right and get enough exercise.
Blackwomanshealth.org—track health news and studies related to Black women.
Blackdoctor.org—locate African-American physicians in your area.
In the world of travel there are some great sites:
Blackatlas.com, sponsored by American Airlines, is a portal tailored to African-American travelers (interesting stuff).
Invillas.com—rent some of the most astounding luxury properties for your next vacation. Please note this is not for the traveler on a budget.
You know I love the bargains and there are some great bargain sites.
Fashionvault.ebay.com—shop the biggest names in fashion and save up to 80 percent off, timing is everything on this one, sales only last 60 hours.
Bagborroworsteal.com—rent a Coach, Louis Vuitton or Prada bag. Please ladies if you really want one just buy it.
Shopathome.com—search 100,000 coupons and deals.
Renttherunway.com—browse and rent pieces for specials occasions (and pray someone notices it).
Geeks.com—locate huge deals on your favorite gadgets from this direct to consumer e-commerce site.
The sites for beauty and hair care are quite interesting. Keep in mind that many sites are sponsored by a product and really want to sell you something, but you can find good information.
Aad.org—The American Academy of Dermatology provides an A to Z breakdown of the signs and symptoms of various disorders of specific to Black skin.
Rxforbrownskin.com—renowned African-American dermatologist Susan Taylor, M.D., delivers top notch information and products.
Afrobella.com—created by Trinidad native Patrice Elizabeth Grell Yursik, this blog celebrates natural hairstyles.
We all love beautiful shoes and there are tons of sites dedicated to footwear, here are a few.
Feverhoes.com— owned by African-American Natischa Harvey, this site features a wide variety of sexy and stylish women’s shoes worn by the likes of Raven Symone and Fantasia.
Samantahoes.com—check out the stylish array of shoes, including ones with wide widths.
Gwynthshoes.com- here, African-American designer Gwen Frempong-Boadu showcases her comfy yet sophisticated women’s shoe line, available in sizes up to 14.
Be careful shopping on line, use a safe and protected computer and shop with a credit card and not a card that is tied to your pay check.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 March 2013 09:28
Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
KINGS & QUEENS (Photo by Carlton Heywood)
Hark Noble Citizens! A special time was had at the Greater Pittsburgh Coliseum, March 9, when the brothers who don the royal purple and old gold celebrated their annual Mardi Gras. This year the theme surrounded the Kings and Queens of the city. This theme gave guests that rare chance to be a king or queen, a prince or a pauper, a court jester or a castle troll.
More than 500 merry makers rolled out in regal splendor, donned in crowns, capes and tiaras. The invite offered fun, dancing, gambling, raffles and prizes. There was a cash prize for the best costume and for the best table. As always big money games were played in the “Quesino,” where there was Black Jack and the Big Money Wheel was spinning all night.
The Iota Phi chapter of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc. has been in Pittsburgh since 1925 and this yearly party serves as fundraisers to support their Thanksgiving Food Drive, Holiday Toy Drive, Historical Black College Tour, Carter G. Woodson Academy and Fatherhood Initiative/mentoring program.
Revelers included members of Delta Sigma Theta, Alpha, Kappa Alpha, Zeta Phi Beta and the Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 March 2013 12:36
Category: Lifestyle Written by Dion Rabouin
I'd like to take a moment to remember Lil Wayne. He's not dead yet, physically speaking, but his brush with death on Friday reminded me of what we'll be losing if and when he is gone.
On Friday, TMZ reported that the legendary New Orleans rapper had been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles after being discovered "shaking uncontrollably" and "unconscious" on a jet flying out of Los Angeles.
He reportedly almost died, and even if Lil Wayne's latest seizure doesn't kill him, which from all accounts it won't, his behavior suggests he's lucky to have made it this far and his luck may be running out quickly. The codeine-saturated syrup that has become synonymous with Wayne's name and music has previously taken the lives of hip hop legends Pimp C and DJ Screw.
And it's already affected Wayne's music. The Lil Wayne whose music and lyrics mesmerized myself and millions of other hip hop aficionados has been dead and gone for years.
He was, for a time, the best rapper alive and one of the most astonishing and impressive lyricists in the world. He put together similes and metaphors like a wordsmith and at his absolute best no one could touch him, not another rapper, not a journalist not a poet not a novelist. He was that good.
He had an ability to move from witty and humorous to devastatingly serious on the same song, often in the same verse and occasionally in the same line. Almost all of that is missing in his music today.
That's why when the world erupted over his indefensibly foul and deplorable lyric about Emmett Till recently, I wasn't surprised. The line wasn't intended to be offensive or even controversial, it was just lazy. Wayne needed a new metaphor for being good at sex so why not take a stab at the long dead civil rights legend?
That's his signature these days – sloppy wordplay, thoughtless rhymes and an often crude obsession with female genitalia.
In his heyday, Wayne incorporated elements of pop culture, underground street life, Christian imagery and boss-level braggadocio into his rhymes. He was, as Time Magazine hailed him in 2008, "a savant who merges sex, drugs and politics with a sneaky intellect, a freakish knowledge of pop culture and a voice out of the Delta."
In addition to being a more than capable lyricist, Wayne was a marvel of musical endurance. He's recorded and released more music than seemingly any artist in the history of the recording industry. In 2007, Billboard reported that he released 77 songs. That didn't even include guest appearances on other artists' music.
A lot of Weezy fans haven't even heard his most impressive rhymes because much of his best material wasn't found on his albums. He put it on rare and obscure mixtapes that he gave away for free on the internet. Some of the best rapping he ever did was released digitally on compilation series like "Dedication," "The Leak," "The W Carter" and "Da Drought," all of which had at least one sequel. He released more than 20 official mixtapes and there's an almost infinite catalog of unofficial releases online.
Despite his penchant for giving his work away, Lil Wayne's ability to churn out quality, thought-provoking and popular verses time and time again still made him the undisputed king of Billboard. In addition to all the mixtapes, during his 14-year career he also released nine major label solo albums and seven others with groups like The Hot Boyz and Young Money. In September he passed Elvis Presley as the man with the most entries on the Billboard 100 chart with 109. The designation happened on his 30th birthday.
At his apex, his rhymes were a mix of the familiar and the unfamiliar, a fusion of the many worlds in which he existed. There was the world of high society and lavish expenditures; the world of his gritty New Orleans upbringing; the world of his inner circle, the Cash Money/Young Money family whom he often referenced; and the world of sports, celebrities and current events that fill news headlines.
I'm not sure whether it was drugs, fame or his obsession with money and rap's number one spot that took him from us, but the man whose ability to fill a 16 with lyrics that left us all awestruck has been gone for some time.
I hope Wayne can kick his syrup habit, get back to making great music and live a long, healthy life. Unfortunately, we've seen this movie before and it seldom ends with the protagonist having an epiphany and turning it all around.
He suffered multiple seizures a few days before the one he suffered on Friday, according to a number of sources quoted by TMZ, and even that wasn't the first time.
"Wayne's latest seizures follow an unfortunate pattern – he dealt with seizure-like symptoms while traveling on a private jet last October. The plane made an emergency landing in Texas, and Wayne was taken to a local hospital," reported Rolling Stone.
TMZ also wrote of this latest incident that "sources say there's evidence Wayne went on a Sizzurp binge after being released from the hospital on Wednesday, because doctors found high amounts of codeine in his system. Wanye's stomach was pumped 3 times to flush the drugs from his system."
Things don't look bright for Wayne, but, in truth, they haven't for some time.
But here's hoping that he makes it, and if he doesn't, I hope history at least remembers the brilliance of who he was, because at his best he was one of the best we've ever heard.
Last Updated on Monday, 18 March 2013 15:19
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