Monthly Archive: May 2010



'Rip the ­Runway a rip-off'… T.I. late, didn’t perform

Billed as “the biggest show of the year,” the “Rip the Runway Fashion Show” and the “T.I. Welcome Home Party” ended up being more of a rip-off, according to attendees. The May 22 show held at the Monroeville Convention Center was to feature clothing from T.I.’s new clothing line, Akoo, in addition to other urban wear by Argyle Culture, Coogi, Apple Bottom, Pastries and Rocawear. VIP?—Those with VIP tickets got to see the rapper T.I. at a distance and fans tried to get photos and talk to him. Local artists, including the dance group, District 78; Mano y Mano; Black and Gold Boys; Undalords; Lady Homi; Boaz; Streetz; Clark Kent: Kid Klash; Quizzle the Cannon; Waan Santiago and Danielle Yvonne, performed as models strutted across the cat walk. However, T.I. never performed and didn’t show up until after midnight. The show was billed to be from 9-11 p.m.


Fathers stand for education:…Students take fathers to school for day of bonding

When it comes to school and the parents’ role in their child’s education, many say where are all the Black men? But on May 21, the Pittsburgh Public Schools demonstrated that fathers have a role and are stepping up at the district’s 12th Annual “Take A Father to School Day.” Schools within the Pittsburgh Public School System invited students to bring their fathers or any male role model in their life to school for a day of activities. PRECIOUS MOMENTS—From left: Troy and Natala Gonzalez share a bonding moment as he lends a hand with a classroom assignment. “It was unbelievable. We are extremely proud and happy (at the participation). We are still getting the numbers in, but this event proves that if people want men to get involved, they just have to ask,” said Mark Brentley Sr., event founder and Pittsburgh Public School board member. “This day shows students that someone is interested in them and their education.”


Carroll still in charge at ELCC… Says deal with Miles not signed

Founder and board chair Ora Lee Carroll said she is not giving up control of the East Liberty Concerned Citizens Corporation to developer Emmett Miles. “The memorandum of understanding was never signed,” she said. “The letter (referenced in last week’s Courier) is not an agreement.” ORA LEE CARROLL The May 3 letter, congratulating Miles for being selected by Carroll and the ELCCC board as the nonprofit’s director of housing and retail development, indicated a memorandum of understanding was to have been signed May 15. Carroll said that never happened. She said she felt hurt.


Black male leadership program expanded

For the past three years, young African-American men from the greater Pittsburgh area have come together in a college setting to focus on leadership development. This year the Black Male Leadership Development Institute has expanded to allow for more youths and more development. TOMORROW’S LEADERS—High school students from the greater Pittsburgh area participate in a college-prep workshop during last year’s program. “The biggest thing is, last year after five days you were done, but this year it’s year round. The learning will continue, the networking will continue,” said Florence Rouzier, director of education, Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh. “We want them to feel a part of strong valued community, that’s a community of strong men and nurturing adults. There are going to be so many opportunities for these young men to model these good behaviors.”


Black Voices for Peace focus on Haiti

While best known for their weekly protests against the wars in the Middle East, the Black Voices for Peace are setting their sights on a new issue. In honor of African Liberation Day and Malcolm X Day, the group hosted a forum to discuss the nation of Haiti. Leading the forum May 22 was Leon Pamphile, Ph.D., a Haitian native and executive director of the Functional Literacy Ministry of Haiti. AFRICAN LIBERATION DAY—Fred Logan, left, and Leon Pamphile open the Black Voices for Peace forum. “This is just the first step. We need to put Haiti on our agenda,” said Fred Logan, a member of Black Voices. “In terms of the policy, we need a movement that will force the Obama administration to take a progressive approach to Haiti. I hope we can increase the importance of Haiti to the world at large. “


Clairton youth advocate honored at banquet

Clairton resident Paulette Bradford was surrounded by family and friends as she graciously accepted accolades for the two decades of dedication she put into helping the city’s youth succeed in society. So when she was told that she was being honored for her selflessness with a banquet at the Ascension Hall, Bradford didn’t think she deserved it. “I don’t like all the hoopla. I just do what I do,” said Bradford. “Everyone always complains about the kids, but when it boils down to it, there’s not a lot for them to do and there are not a lot of volunteers to help people when you need to do something. They are always too busy and there are only a handful of people trying to do something. PAULETTE BRADFORD


Speak Out: How important is a pharmacy to the Hill District?

What is your reaction to the pharmacy being opened by Duquesne University? Here’s what you said: “It’s very important because of the elderly who live here. The nearest one is out of the community and is a big travel for a lot of people. I think it’s good that Duquesne University is bringing it and I support it 100 percent.”Leroy WilsonEntrepreneurHill District Leroy Wilson, Scott Tunstalle, Tommy Hayes


Community Calendar

Leadership summit MAY 28—The African American Leadership Association and UPMC’s Center for Inclusion will host the 2nd Annual African American Leadership Summit from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Herberman Conference Center, 5230 Centre Ave., Shadyside. The theme is “Success in Leadership.” The summit will consist of various speakers, facilitators, panelists and the keynote speaker Jay Williams, Mayor of Youngstown, Ohio. There will also be a leadership development series certificate presentation award ceremony. Registration is required and the cost is $50. For more information, call 412-281-4967 or visit


Indonesian film portrays Obama’s early years

by Tanalee Smith BANDUNG, Indonesia (AP)—Young Barry Obama is struggling with his pingpong shot. Or rather, 12-year-old Hasan Faruq Ali is struggling to play left-handed in imitation of the character he is portraying in a new Indonesian film, “Little Obama.” ‘LITTLE OBAMA’—In this photo taken on May 18, 12-year-old American actor Hasan Faruq Ali smiles during an interview with the Associated Press at a location for shooting of film “Little Obama” in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia. “Hasan has the walk, he has the posture of Barry,” said Slamet Djanuadi, a consultant on the film and a childhood friend of President Barack Obama when he lived in Indonesia from 1967 to 1971. “But Barry was a better pingpong player,” he laughed, watching Hasan hit the ball off the table.