Daily Archive: March 21, 2012


Mom hits the books to help NBA prospect son

Last year, former Chicago Bulls basketball player Scottie Pippen returned to the spotlight, when news media outlets announced the now retired player was bordering on bankruptcy after having earned a reported $120 million through the course of his career. But Pippen’s story is far too common in the world of professional sports where money is spent freely and players are taken advantage of by managers who mishandle their earnings and investments. MCKEESPORT MOM—Nicole Bozeman studies the ins and outs of sports management at Point Park University to help her son Ezekiel Marshall. It is this same fate that 48-year-old Nicole Bozeman is trying to avoid for her son, Ezekiel Marshall, a college basketball player for the University of Akron in Ohio. To help her son navigate next year’s NBA draft and guide him through an anticipated future NBA career, the McKeesport mom has enrolled in Point Park University’s sport, arts and entertainment management program.


First Pgh Promise grads honored

The first city graduates who were able to take advantage of the Pittsburgh Promise scholarship program are now beginning to graduate from four-year colleges, and Mayor Luke Ravenstahl wanted them to know how proud of them he is. So during a March 15 ceremony in his conference room, he presented 12 of them with proclamations congratulating them for their determination and success. FIRST CLASS—Joined by Pittsburgh Promise Executive Director Saleem Ghubril, a dozen students who were among the first four-year college graduates to receive Promise scholarships are honored by Mayor Luke Ravenstahl during a March 15 event at his office. (Photo by J.L. Martello.) “You are a testament to the region’s dedication,” he said. “We hope these graduates choose to stay, to live and work here and contribute to this growing economy.”



by Will Graves AP Sports Writer PITTSBURGH (AP) — Hines Ward believes he can still play football. The longtime Pittsburgh wide receiver known for his high-wattage smile and his bone-crunching blocks just couldn’t stomach the thought of doing it in some strange uniform on some strange field with nary a Terrible Towel in sight. HINES WARD “I just wouldn’t feel right,” Ward said. So rather than play for a 15th season — and his first outside the Steel City — a tearful Ward opted to retire on Tuesday and secure a legacy unmatched in the franchise’s long history.


Effects on children of jailed parents

Since the age of 2, Tirrell Harris had no relationship with his father. He had left him and his mother and had been in and out of jail. At the age of 16, Harris got an unexpected phone call from his father, trying to make amends and develop the relationship he never had. Now 18, Harris is in college and doing well. While they now have some type of relationship, Harris’ father still remains incarcerated, serving time on a 12-year sentence. LOCKED UP—The Allegheny County Jail is just one of the state’s correctional facilities that is becoming home to more and more parents. (Photo by J.L. Martello) Tabu Hurt-McClung is a single mother raising her daughters. Throughout her 15-year-old daughter Sasche’s life, her father has been incarcerated multiple times. Although she has a relationship with her father, Sasche still realizes the struggle her mother goes through and the burden of not having him there.


NEED funds up $500,000

It could’ve been Super Bowl Sunday at this year’s annual NEED dinner, as guests waved their napkins like terrible towels at a football game. But the sea of waving green and white in the ballroom of the Wyndham Grand Hotel March 14 wasn’t in support of a football team; it was in support of this year’s NEED scholarship recipients. “Since 1963, NEED has been building on our legacy. Tonight we will be awarding scholarships to 44 of the region’s best and brightest students,” said Harold Hayes, the event’s master of ceremonies. “These students will join the 19,000 other NEED recipients.” NEED SCHOLARS—Forty-two of the 43 scholarship recipients gather for a group photo at the 49th Annual NEED Benefit Dinner. (Photos by J.L. Martello) As the oldest community-based, nonprofit, minority, higher education assistance program in Pennsylvania, NEED has provided scholarships for African-American students pursuing post secondary education for nearly a half century. The theme of the 49th Annual NEED Benefit Dinner was “Building on Our Legacy: Rooted in the Past, Growing Towards Our Future.”


North Shore connector ready to roll

Beginning March 25, Port Authority Passengers will be able to take a ride under the Allegheny River on PAT’s half-billion dollar North Shore Connector. The 1.2-mile North Shore Connector, comprised of two tunnels running 20 feet below the river bed, will link a redesigned Gateway Center Station at Liberty Avenue and Stanwix Street, Downtown to two North Side stations, one underground by PNC Park and an elevated Allegheny station between Heinz Field and the Rivers Casino. UNDER THE NORTH SIDE—Technicians check the train and centralized platform; allowing passengers to board in both directions, at the new North Side station during a test run of the North Shore Connecter, March 13. (Photos by J.L Martello.) In addition to its redesign, the Gateway station also features the fully restored Romare Bearden mural that had been removed from the old station prior to construction of the new North Side spur. The ride from Wood Street to the Allegheny station takes nine minutes and will be free for at least three years, as the Steelers and the Casino are underwriting them.


Community Calendar

Public Meeting MARCH 22—The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh will host its annual Public Meeting from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland. There will be a “State of the Library” presentation as well as an open question and answer session. Following the meeting, there will be light refreshments, personal introductions, and conversations with Library board members and staff. For more information, call 412-622-8877.


Voter ID law reactions

In the 2008 presidential election, African-American voter turnout saw an increase of 15 percent over voter turnout in 2004. However, this trend might not continue to rise in 2012 as more than 25 percent of African-Americans in Pennsylvania, who do not have photo identification, could be turned away from the polls, thanks to a new law passed March14. “As founder of an organization whose goal is to ensure that African-Americans vote in each and every election, I find the passage of this bill as an affront to our mission,” said Tim Stevens, chairman of the Black Political Empowerment Project. “The important question we must be asking is why did this happen all of sudden when we have an African-American president. B-PEP is a non-partisan organization, but we’re also not stupid. Why is it that when we have an African-American president we decide to change the rules?”


Hill House names grocery project managers

The Hill House Economic Development Corporation has selected two firms to act as its project management and administrative representatives as construction of the twice-delayed Centre Heldman Plaza project finally gets under way. CM Solutions of New Kensington will serve as project manager for the plaza and its anchor SHOP ‘n SAVE grocery, while the Sphinx Group will serve as the HHEDC project administrator. Joining construction management firm Stark/CMI Joint Venture Inc., they will coordinate and supervise all construction activities.