Daily Archive: September 7, 2011


Contractor change causes Hill grocery store delay

The money is supposed to be in place, the site was being prepared, and everything seemed on track for the Centre Avenue Shop ’n Save to open for Thanksgiving. But as anyone traveling Centre Avenue could see, nothing beyond some site grading had been finished. Why the delay? The project has a new general contractor. JASON MATTHEWS According to the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, project manager Jason Matthews replaced the Brinker Group with CMI Contracting. Chuck Powell, the URA’s director of diversity affairs & community outreach, said though CMI is not a wholly owned minority firm like Brinker, one of the two principals is contractor Max Starks Sr., father of the former Pittsburgh Steeler lineman.


Manchester housing wealth revealed

On July 23-24, Manchester Citizens Corporation held its first Great House Sale, a weekend devoted to promoting a positive image of the neighborhood and selling homes to prospective buyers. More than a month after the event, the organization is moving into phase two of their housing revitalization initiative and hoping to carry their recent success forward. PHASE ONE—A photo taken from August shows MCC’s progress on the first five homes in the Columbus Square housing development (Photo by J.L. Martello) “The Great House Sale was great. We had great attendance and it’s from the Great House Sale that we were able to sell the units in the first phase and create a waiting list. We had great participation from local banks and mortgage companies as well as contractors. The kickoff event was attended by Mayor Luke Ravenstahl as well as members of the housing authority and our financial partners,” said MCC Executive Director Ahmed Martin. “The goal of the Great House Sale was to introduce Greater Pittsburgh to the value and the quality of housing stock in Manchester and to promote a positive image of Manchester.”



44 of 53 homicides Black lives

Again, homicides for the month of August consisted of only Black males, all under the age of 30, some under the age of 25 and what is even more alarming, most were under the age of 20. What is going on? Dalyn Jones, an 18-year-old male was shot multiple times in the parking lot of a busy restaurant, at a busy intersection, at a busy time of the day (rush hour), by a 15-year-old boy, and over what-a small bag of weed? Ridiculous. Days earlier, a 14-year-old lost his life during an incident that most likely did not have to occur and could have gone another way if someone would have stopped and thought about the consequences of their actions.


Unified agenda pushed by politicians

On Sept. 1, the African American Leadership Association, in partnership with the Black Political Empowerment Project, hosted the first in a three part series of sessions titled “Producing Political Power.” At the session, held in Bethel AME Church in the Hill District, the audience heard from Black elected officials and representatives from several sectors of local government. K. CHASE PATTERSON Serving on the panel were Ed Gainey, coordinator of economic development for the mayor’s office; Amanda Green Hawkins, district 13 county council representative; Jake Wheatley, 19 district house representative; Majestic Lane, senior executive assistant to State Senator Jim Ferlo; and K. Chase Patterson, field representative for Congressman Mike Doyle. While providing the audience with an overview of their offices and positions, the panelists agreed Black government officials, community leaders, non-profits and citizens need to come together to present a unified agenda to address African-American issues.


Lover’s duo diminished to single song

by Gregory Dale Lovers whose romance was sparked and spawned to the strains of Ashford and Simpson could hardly believe the news of Ashford’s death. Sixty-something boomers wondered when exactly he became 70 and how such a velvety voice, the substantial half of a dynamic duo could be silenced. NICK ASHFORD & VALERIE SIMPSON Legendary performer Nick Ashford, who along with his wife penned a bevy of classic soul and funk hits, died of throat cancer in New York Aug. 22. He was 70. The musician’s death was confirmed by his publicist, who told the Associated Press that he had been suffering from the illness and had undergone radiation treatment.


Community Calendar

White Party SEPT. 8—Five Starr Corp. and The Soul Pitt will host its 3rd Annual White Party at 6 p.m. at the Fox Chapel Yacht Club, 1366 Old Freeport Rd., Fox Chapel. The event will feature The Fabulous Diamond Models. The cost is $20. For more information, call 412-628-4856 or email soulsis@thesoulpitt.com.



This Week In Black History

Week of Sept. 10-16 September 10 1847—John Roy Lynch is born into slavery on this day near Vidalia, La. Lynch would be among the first group of Blacks to serve in the United States Congress after slavery. He represented the state of Mississippi. Lynch would even serve as temporary chairman of the Republican Party National Convention. During this period, the Republicans were the more progressive and friendly-to-Blacks party. But as the period of Reconstruction faded and Southern politicians made it virtually impossible for Blacks to remain in political office, Lynch moved to Chicago and practiced law. He died in 1939 at the age of 92. FATHER DIVINE


Will Obama respond to CBC’s drama?

by Charles D. Ellison WASHINGTON (NNPA) —The past couple of weeks were overflowing with headlines of agitated Black Members of Congress throwing tantrums at the tea party, the president and anything that could create distance between them and the wrath of frustrated Black constituents looking for jobs. FRUSTRATION CONSTITUENT—K.T. Houston, left, of Inglewood, Calif., talks with Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., during a Kitchen Table Summit event at Inglewood High School Aug 20. More than 2,000 residents gathered around tables at the Los Angeles-area high school gymnasium to vent their frustrations about the lingering recession and call on their elected officials to focus on job creation. (AP Photo/Jason Redmond) It was the Black version of the summer of 2010; an In-Living-Color retrofit of those angry, legendary town hall meetings last year that took down the Democratic majority in the House, slimmed it down in the Senate and made President Obama wear a gray suit and ideologically matching red tie in a white flag waving peace sign the day after.


‘Klan buster’ Stetson Kennedy dies at 94 in Fla.

by Terry SpencerAssociated Press Writer MIAMI (AP)—Author and folklorist Stetson Kennedy, who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan six decades ago and exposed its secrets to authorities and the public but was also criticized for possibly exaggerating his exploits, died Saturday. He was 94. In the 1960s, Kennedy wrote a weekly column under the pseudonym, “Daddy Mention,” for the Pittsburgh Courier.



Mr. Bernard Jones was a super Black visionary

I met Bernard “Bernie” Jones at Fifth Avenue High School and over the years we remained the best of friends. We travelled different paths, but we never lost focus on that which was important and beneficial to the advancement of Black people. Bernie died so he is no longer with us physically, but because of his ingenuity and foresight in the founding of UYA and Poise Foundation he will always be with us.