Saturday, July 12, 2014

Mayor Jackson is Prayer Breakfast Speaker at St. Francis of Assisi

Prairie View Mayor Frank D. Jackson is the speaker for the monthly Men’s Prayer Breakfast set for July 19, 2014 at St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church in Prairie View. The event begins at 8:30 a.m. with networking and breakfast in the church’s Parish Hall.

Mayor Jackson will provide an update on his administration, accomplishments in the city, the Mayor’s Senior Outreach Project in collaboration with the 2104 ACCESS students of Prairie View A&M University. Economic development and the various "Sister Cities" initiatives with Belize, Columbia, Ghana and Mexico, and the pending relationship with Haiti.

Frank D. Jackson was elected Mayor for the City of Prairie View, Texas on May 4, 2002. He is seeking reelection for a seventh term in May 2014.

During his tenure as Mayor Frank D. Jackson worked cooperatively with members of the City Council to adopt the first City – Countywide Emergency Management Plan; install a traffic light at the intersection of University Drive & Owens Road; adopted the City’s Comprehensive Development Plan and Zoning Ordinance, and the City’s Strategic Plan; provided leadership to pass the City’s 1st bond initiative since 1975 to make critical upgrades to the water & waste water systems to include a complete refurbishment of the City’s water tower and tripling the capacity of the City’s main (Alta Vista) lift station , pave every street in the City with hot-mix asphalt, and build the 1st City owned City Hall & Municipal Court Building; erect a Welcome to City of Prairie View sign with flags on US 290; landscape major intersections; erect the “Fences Project” that recognizes the historic 14 Farm Families of PV; implement the bi-annual Panthers At Work City-wide Clean up involving the University and Community; widen University Drive from the entrance to Prairie View A&M University to Business 290 to a 5 lane boulevard with bicycle lanes, sidewalks and street lights; adopt a “Down Town Overlay Plan” that with guide a uniform and beautiful development of down town Prairie View; purchased property to build a City owned Retail Center.

Mayor Frank D. Jackson authored the 1st book on the history of the City of Prairie View, Texas entitled “A Brief History of The City of Prairie View” and also “Juneteenth.”

In addition to being mayor, Jackson the Director of Government Relations at Prairie View A&M University, President and Fire Chief of the Prairie View Volunteer Fire Fighting Association, Inc., and Past Master of Lone Star Lodge # 85 – Hempstead, Texas and currently serves as Grand Historian for the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Texas. He is an active member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Epsilon Tau Lambda Chapter – Prairie View, Texas.

Mr. Jackson is married to Marian Elaine Jones and is the father of four children, Tracy, Ayanna, Cheikh & Okofo. The Jackson’s have two grandchildren Chazrel & Simone.

Mayor Jackson strives to live by the Motto: “Regardless of the phenomenon that we encounter in this life, it will be a whole lot better if we just do it together.”

The breakfast is free and we ask that you confirm your attendance by calling 936-857-3272 or email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

PVAMU Professor Chapman Passes

William Hulon Chapman. retired professor of English at Prairie View A&M University passed away on July 3, 2014 in the Tomball Regional Hospital after a long illness. Chapman was born on September 30, 1937 to parents Hulon Chapman and Harriet Chapman Clayton in Greenville, South Carolina. He grew up and graduated from Sterling High School in Greenville in 1955.

Chapman received his Bachelor of Science Degree from North Carolina A&T State University and his Master of Arts from the University of Iowa. He also studied at the University of Michigan and the University of London.

He was a distinguished professor of English at Prairie View A&M University from 1966 until his retirement in 2004. During his tenure at the university he served in various capacities to include Interim Head of the Department of English and Foreign Languages and Head of Freshman Studies English; Senator on the Faculty Senate, the Prairie View Staff Association, Chairman of the Judges Committee for the Miss Prairie View A&M University Scholarship Pageant, Co-chairman of the Coronation Committee and served on various other academic and student affairs committees. He was also a long time sponsor for the Baptist Student Movement which won several national awards under his tutelage and guidance. Chapman always found ways to help students to achieve their goals and dreams. When a student approached him about publishing poetry of young poets at the university, it was Chapman that assisted the student in publishing Ebon Dialect, to much acclaim in the academy. His community involvement included membership with the Prairie View A&M University Alumni Association, Board Member of the Prairie View Federal Credit Union and the St. Peters Missionary Baptist Church.

Chapman was initiated into the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Epsilon Tau Lambda Chapter on July 13, 1991 and served the chapter as Recording Secretary and Associate Editor of the Sphinx Magazine.

Mr. Chapman is survived by three brothers, Harold Chapman, Sr. of New York; Phillip Chapman, Sr. of Greenville; Nedra Booker of Greenville; and James Clayton of Houston, Texas; and a host of other family members, fraternity brothers and friends.

Funeral services include the viewing and memorial at the Johnson Phillip All Faiths Chapel at the university from 3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. Friday, July 11. The Brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. will conduct their Omega Service at 6:00 p.m.

The Funeral services will be on Saturday, July 12, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Peter’s Baptist Church in Hempstead. Burial will be in the Prairie View Memorial Cemetery.

Condolences may be sent to the Family of William H. Chapman, , c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Cedillo to host Meet the Candidate Forums for Waller County's Future

Sylvia Cedillo, Candidate for Waller County Judge, cordially invites citizens of Waller County to join her to ask questions, talk about your vision for Waller County, and express your concerns for Waller County's future.

SCHEDULE OF MEETINGS for WEEK OF JULY 7-11, 2014

Tues, July 8 6-8 pm Waller County Courthouse Assembly Room 836 Austin St, Hempstead

Wed, July 9 6-8 pm City of Prairie View Council Chambers Business 290, Prairie View

Thurs, July 10 6-8 pm Waller County JP 2 Courthouse 27388 Field Store Rd

Fri, July 11 6-8 pm Waller County Library 3815 6th Street, Brookshire

Come on out and meet the candidate and voice your concerns and expectations. Your participation would be most appreciated!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Former US Postmistress Esel Bell passes in Prairie View

The Prairie View Community is morning the loss of an outstanding pillar in the person of Mrs. Esel Bell, former postmaster for the Prairie View Post Office and long time resident of Prairie View who passed on June 19, 2014. Services for Mrs. Bell are as follows: The Viewing is from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday, June 27 with Wake at 7:00 p.m. in the Johnson Phillip All Faith Chapel at Prairie View A&M University. The funeral service is on Saturday, June 28 at 11:00 a.m. at the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church in Hempstead. Condolences may be sent to the Esel Bell Family, c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.

The Prairie View Community enjoyed a lively Juneteenth Celebration at the home of Constable Herschel Smith. More than 200 residents and guests came out the third annual event hosted by Constable Smith. Patrons were treated to the free sumptuous bar-b-que, side dishes, deserts and soft drinks. Smith stated that this was his way of giving back to the community as well as celebrating the 149th year of the emancipation proclamation which freed the slaves in Texas on June 19, 1865 by General Gordon Granger at Galveston. “We all have a place in this country and it is a reminder that the struggle continues but we can make a difference.” Kudos to Constable Smith for keeping the legacy alive.

June is officially Blacks in Music Month and to close out the celebration I am giving a shout-out to hometown maestro and impresario Chris Martin, DJ Premier, who has made a significant contribution to Hip Hop and Jazz. Chris grew up in Prairie View to parents Dr. Edward and Pearl Martin, graduated from Waller High School and attended Prairie View A&M University, where he honed and perfected his musical skills on wax as the campus DJ and intermitting performances with the world renowned Marching Storm.

After three years of study, Chris decided to test the musical waters and it was off to New York where he took on the name DJ Premier and teamed up with Guru to form Gangstarr, which enjoyed a stellar movement on the Hip Hop scene. Following that run, Chris moved into becoming a producer and business man who now owns Year Round Records with several artists including New York group NYGz, New Jersey rapper Nick Javas, and Houston rapper Khaleel, and Tha Blaqprint by Blaq Poet. Chris has produced music with Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Jay-Z, Shakira, Big Daddy Kane, The Game, Nas, the Black Eye Peas, Busta Rhymes and 9th Wonder, and was the lead producer for the Bradford Marsalis Quartet sound track for Spike Lee’s “Mo Better Blue.” He also produced a beat for Immortal Technique's The Middle Passage and Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers.

DJ Premier hosts a weekly 2 hour show Live From HeadQCourterz on SIRIUS Satellite Radio's Hip-Hop Nation on Fridays and a featured artist in the 2012 documentary Re:GENERATION music project. The film followed his production of the song Regeneration using live performance by the Berklee Symphony Orchestra. Chris has many awards to his credit including BET Awards, Grammy Credits and was named VIBE Magazine’s Producer of the year for three years. Kudos to Chris Martin, DJ Premier a local legend!

The 2014 Vacation Bible School & Arts/Hand Bell Camp sponsored by St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church and First United Methodist Church will be held July 28-August 1 from 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. at the church on 204 Dooley Street in Prairie View. Registration for the camp will be on June 28 at 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. and July 1 at 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The free event is open to kids in grades 1-8. For information contact: Mrs. Madolyn Reed - 936-857-3534 or email. madolynreed@yahoo.com,

The planners for the ‘Red Hot Summer’s Night in August’ and the 8th Annual Red & White Fireman’s Ball on August 23, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. in the Willie A. Tempton, Sr. Memorial Student Ballroom at Prairie View A&M University are inviting members of the community to sponsor items for its silent auction and purchase tickets and ads for the public event. The event will honor the Prairie View Volunteer Fire Fighting Association, Inc. and Farmers & Ranchers, Cowboys and Cowgirls in Waller County and surrounding areas. The reception begins at 6:30 p.m. in the student center foyer. Supporters are invited to Proceeds will support equipment and operations. For information, contact: Belinda Lewis at lewisbelinda@hotmail.com.

The Prairie View Chamber of Commerce will hold its monthly meeting tonight June 26 at 6:00 p.m. in the George E. Higgs Building on University Drive. Membership dues are being received for the new year and members are asked to bring refreshments. George E. Higgs is president.

The countdown is on or the 40th National Convention of the Prairie View A&M University Alumni Association on July 23-27 at the Westin Houston Memorial City, Katy Freeway. More than 500 alumni and friends of PVAMU are expected to attend the four-day event, featuring workshops, seminars, class meetings and the awards ceremonies. For information visit: www.pvualumni.org or call 936-857-5817. Lashonda Williams, President of the Houston Area Chapter is the convention chair.

The City of Prairie View held its council meeting on June 24 to another capacity crowd. In addition to the regular agenda the council received several comments from the citizens regarding the quality of life in the city. Citizens commenting included Revered Dr. Ed Schauer concerning the need for a better working relationship among the citizens; Ramona Dillard and Minnie Cyrus on the issue of flooding in Prairie Hills; David Allen in response to 911 and the need for the mayor and police chief to be listening to 2-way radio; and James Larry concerning his request to be on the agenda. The council approved the 5-year renewal of the contract for Republic Waste Services (Mr. Carl Hartmann was introduced as the new General Manager); approved the division of lots in Prairie Acres and disapproval for the change in zoning form R1 to manufactured homes. The council also confirmed Council Member Herbert R. Thomas as Mayor Pro-tem for the year, based on seniority of service and the reappointment of Council Member Marie Herndon to the Waller County Sub-Regional Planning Commission. The Olson and Olson Law Firm was temporarily approved as City Attorney pending the development of the RFP to include a services by a court prosecutor.

Condolences to the family of Mrs. Vivian Jeffery, former staff member of Prairie View A&M University, who passed June 15, 2014. Funeral service for Mrs. Jeffery was held on June 21, 2014 in the Johnson Phillip All Faith Chapel. Expressions may be sent to the Vivian Jeffery Family, c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.

Your prayers and encouragement are welcomed for Esel Bell, Ernestine Carreathers, William H. Chapman, Irene Davis, B. J. Freeman, Betty Hall, Timothy Hall, Mae Helen James, David Kirkpatrick, James Poindexter, Irene Reid, Willie Smith, Mary Ann Stubblefield, Theola Woods and Douglas Woolfolk. May God’s peace be with you!

A word to the Bargain Hunters: come out to the best Yard Sale I Texas on Saturday, June 28, 2014 from 7 am to 2 pm at 222 Echols Street, Prairie View, Texas, near University Drive. Come out and make your selections from the collection of clothes, shoes, household items, and books, etc., etc., etc. For information write email: veronica.clarice@yahoo.com.

HAPPY JUNE BIRTHDAY TO: Brystol Mayo (26), Ceaniel Ragston (26), Jokeisha Campbell (27), Jennifer Jackson (27), Benny Strange (27), Jaulene Sams (27), Ronald Leverett (28), James Johnson (28), Robert Smith (29), Darlene Clark (30) and Caroline Stevenson (30). HAPPY JULY BIRTHDAY TO: Granville O'Brien (1), Willie Adams (1), Neal Baines (1), Alvertice Bowdre (1), Lena Boyd-Brown (1), Byron Henry (1), Mary B. Johnson (1), Genora Kendrick Boykin (1), R.N. Rao (1), Donald Sowell (1), Waymon Webster (1), Fata Sirleaf (2), Raymond L. Burgess (3), Frankie Rigsby (7), Rona Bledsoe (9), Rose Fantahun (9) and Freddie L. Richards (9).

THE VIEW FROM THE HILL: Students in the 2014 Exxon Mobil Bernard Harris Science Summer Camp and the Pre College Institute will say good bye this weekend with special awards programs on June 27 and 28 in the Memorial Student Center. The campers spent two weeks participating in various events in science, math and computer science. The camp was created in 1998 by former Astronaut Dr. Bernard Harris (MD) of Houston. Both programs are sponsored by the Career Services Staff at PVAMU. Contact Career Services 936-261-3570 for information on other programs.

Until next week, in the words of Justice Thurgood Marshall, “A man can make what he wants of himself if he truly believes that he must be ready for hard work and many heartbreaks;” so do your part! Keep those achievements and recognitions coming to prairieviewtoday@iwon.com, fax (936) 857-5352, phone (936) 857-3272 or P. O. Box 2906, Prairie View, Texas 77446.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Seab Smith to address Men's Prayer Breakfast at St. Francis of Assisi

Dr. Seab A. Smith, retired professor of Biology at Prairie View A&M University is the speaker for the Men's Prayer Breakfast at St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church on Saturday, June 21, 2014. The Free event begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Parish Hall of the church at 204 Dooley Street, Prairie View.

Dr. Smith holds the Doctorate of Education in Science Education from the University of Houston, M.S. Degree in Biology Education from Northwestern University, the B. S. Degree in Horticulture Science from Southern University at Baton Rouge; and further studies at the University of Texas at Austin and Argonne National Laboratory in Idaho Falls, Idaho and the Oak Ridge National Laboratories in Nashville, Tennessee.

Dr. Smith has a tremendous history and experiences in public service, teaching and community involvement. As we will be commemorating the 149th Anniversary of the reading of the Emancipation by General Granger in Galveston on which freed the slaves in Texas on June 19, 1865, Dr. Smith will speak on his background, training and experiences in relation to the freeing of the slaves in Texas and Louisiana, his hometown, and how we can improve the quality of life in our communities.

All concerned men of the community are invited to attend free breakfast and fellowship. PLEASE call 936-857-3272 or email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net to confirm attendance.

The men of the church looks forward to your joining them for this important activity. They also invite you to join them for our Christian Education/Bible study on Fridays at 7:00 p.m. in the Parish Hall and to worship with them at the service on Sundays at 11:00 .am.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Celebrating Juneteenth's 149th Anniversary

Today, June 19, marks the 149th year when Texas acknowledged the order freeing the slaves by the reading of the emancipation proclamation on June 19, 1865 by General Gordon Granger at Galveston. Be reminded that the U.S. Congress abolished slavery in its territories on June 19, 1862, with the law taking affect on January 1, 1863. Texans and other Americans will pause today to celebrate Juneteenth, commemorating this historical moment. Kudos to State Representative Al Edwards and other Texas legislators for approving the Juneteenth Holiday bill in 1978 which was signed into law by Governor William P. Clements on June 13, 1979. Happy Juneteenth to all!

The monthly Men’s Prayer Breakfast, hosted by the men of St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church, will be held June 21, 2014 at 8:30 a.m. in the church’s Parish Hall, 204 Dooley Street in Prairie View. The speaker is Dr. Seab A. Smith, retired professor of biology at Prairie View A&M University. Dr. Smith will share his experiences and pay homage to the 149th year of the reading of the Emancipation Proclamation in Galveston which freed the slaves of Texas. Dr. Smith holds the B. S. Degree in Horticulture Science from Southern University at Baton Rouge, Louisiana; the M.S. Degree in Biology Education from Northwestern University\ at Natchitoches, Louisiana and the Doctorate of Education in Science Education from the University of Houston.

All men in the community are invited and should confirm attendance to the FREE breakfast by calling 936-857-3272 or email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net. Members of the community are also invited to attend and participate in its Bible Study/Christian Education on Fridays at 7:00 p.m. in the Parish Hall; and worship service on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. with the Holy Eucharist. Come and share the word and be filled.

The Office of Mayor Frank D. Jackson and the PVAMU Access Program invite the children of Prairie View to “A Summer Fund Day” on June 22 from 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. at the Gertrude Tapscott City Park and the Volunteer Fire Department on Business 290 @ Ellen Powell Drive in Prairie View. Children up to 12 years old can participate in the afternoon of water fun, food and door prizes; and a theatre performance. For information, contact 936-261-5911.

Make plans now to attend the social event of the year: ‘Red Hot Summer’s Night in August’ and the 8th Annual Red & White Fireman’s Ball on August 23, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. in the Willie A. Tempton, Sr. Memorial Student Ballroom at Prairie View A&M University. The event honors the Prairie View Volunteer Fire Fighting Association, Inc. and Farmers & Ranchers, Cowboys and Cowgirls in Waller County and surrounding areas. The reception begins at 6:30 p.m. in the student center foyer. Supporters are invited to take on sponsorship and make donations for the silent auction. Tickets and souvenir ads for the public event are available through August 9, 2014. Proceeds will support equipment and operations. For information, contact: Belinda Lewis at lewisbelinda@hotmail.com.

Registration is now in session for the 40th National Convention of the Prairie View A&M University Alumni Association on July 23-27 at the Westin Houston Memorial City, Katy Freeway. More than 500 alumni and friends of PVAMU are expected to attend the four-day event, featuring workshops, seminars, class meetings and the awards ceremonies. For information visit: www.pvualumni.org or call 936-857-5817. Lashonda Williams, President of the Houston Area Chapter is the convention chair.

The members of the Progressive Missionary Baptist Church Hempstead invite the community to come celebrate Usher’s Day on June 22 at 2:30 p.m. Reverend Dr. Clarence Talley, Pastor of Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church is the speaker. Come to the celebration!

America is mourning the passing of another icon in the person of famed American actress, poet, playwright, screenwriter, journalist and activist. Ruby Dee, who passed on June 12, 2014. Miss Dee’s career in the arts and the civil rights movement span some eighty years. She was one of the few Black artists to be nominated for the academy awards, grammy and tony awards. Dee received many awards including the coveted Kennedy Honors and Presidential Freedom Award. Ruby Dee and her husband Ossie Davis also made a trek to Prairie View A&M University in the 1980’s. I remember their performance of Winnie and Nelson Mandella, which was a foretelling of how South Africa would be under a free Nelson Mandella. Those were days my friend when the greats among us visited Prairie View A&M University.

The Prairie View Community is morning the loss of two outstanding pillars, first in the person of Mrs. Vivian Jeffery, former staff member of Prairie View A&M University who passed June 15, 2014. Funeral services for Mrs. Jeffery is set for June 21, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. in the Johnson Phillip All Faith Chapel. Condolences may be sent to the Vivian Jeffery Family, c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.

Next is Mrs. Esel Bell, former postmaster for the Prairie View Post Office and long time resident of Prairie View who passed on June 19, 2014. Services for Mrs. Bell is as follows: The Viewing is from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday, June 27 with Wake at 7:00 p.m. in the Johnson Phillip All Faith Chapel at Prairie View A&M University. The funeral service is on Saturday, June 26 at 11:00 a.m. at the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church in Hempstead. Condolences may be sent to the Esel Bell Family, c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.

Your prayers and encouragement are welcomed for Esel Bell, Ernestine Carreathers, William H. Chapman, Irene Davis, B. J. Freeman, Betty Hall, Timothy Hall, Mae Helen James, David Kirkpatrick, James Poindexter, Irene Reid, Willie Smith, Mary Ann Stubblefield, Theola Woods and Douglas Woolfolk. May God’s peace be with you!

Kudos to the members of the Collegiate 100 and 100 Collegiate Women of America and at Prairie View A&M University who recently attended the National Convention of the 100 Black Men of America, Inc. and the Collegiate 100 in Hollywood, Florida on June 11-15. Members attending were Alexandria Hall, Gabrielle Scott and Ashley Mills, president of the 100 Collegiate, Jonathan Amos, Trevino Thomas and Cameron Gordon, president of the Collegiate 100, along with advisors Mrs. Shadia Washington, Dr. Clement Glenn and Frederick V. Roberts. Other delegates from Texas Southern University and the 100 Black Men of Metro Houston, Inc. were also in attendance. The delegates participated in several workshops and seminars ranging from leadership, career development, professional and personal development and community service.

Featured speakers included Civil Rights Attorney Thomas Todd, U.S. Representative Al C. Hasting, LT. General John Honore and Business Professor, Dr. Dennis Kimbro, who all addressed the convention’s team, Education in An Era of Ch ange: Ensuring Excellence for African American Youth. Prairie View A&M’s own Terry Ellis, a member of EnVogue provided entertainment for the gala. Curley S. Dossman, Jr., Vice President with Georgia Pacific is the president of 100 Black Men of America, Inc., with Attorney Bert Jennings as president of the 100 Black Men of Metro Houston, Inc.

HAPPY JUNE BIRTHDAY TO: Monica Harden (18), Linda Woodson (18), Donnie Pennywell (19), Ruth Wanza (19), Lee Davies (20), Joyce M. Jeffrey (20), Karon Neal (20), Thomas Godwin (22), Chandra Johnson (24), Sharon McWhinney (24), Beverly Spears (24), Brystol Mayo (26), Ceaniel Ragston (26), Mary Boozer (27) Jokeisha Campbell (27), Jennifer Jackson (27), Benny Strange (27), Ronald Leverett (28), James Johnson (28), Robert Smith (29), Darlene Clark (30) and Caroline Stevenson (30). HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to: Glen and Debra Berry (18).

THE VIEW FROM THE HILL: The Office of Purchasing and Procurement at Prairie View A&M University hosted its annual HUB and Business Fair on June 18 to a rousing success. The more than 100 businesses were on hand to share their wares and services, including office supplies, computing equipment, promotional items, banking, airline and bus travel, car rental and awards and accessories. The event was coordinated by Mr. Jim Nelms.

Until next week, in the words of Nelson Mandela, "After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb, and I can rest only for a moment, for with freedom comes responsibilities and commitment." Keep the news, achievements and recognitions coming to prairieviewtoday@iwon.com or Prairie View Today, P.O. Box 2906, Prairie View, TX 77446.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Renaissance Poet, Actress, Singer and Civil Rights Activist Dr. Maya Angelou passes at 86

The lovers of the written word around the world are mourning the passing of the great poet and activist Dr. Maya Angelou on May 28, 2014. The celebrated Dr. Angelou was 86 and leaves behind a body of work filled with wisdom and insight.

Angelou rose to fame in 1969 with her debut book, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," and wrote seven autobiographies and many poems, including on the ‘Pulse of Morning’ which she read at the inauguration of President Bill Clinton and the most quoted of all 'And Still I Rise.' Angelou was a dancer, writer, actress, activist and a great human being who believed in people. She marched and protested with the likes of James Baldwin, Malcolm X and Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr. You may ask what does the story has to do with Prairie View Today. Well, it has a lot to do with her presence in the city. It was in 1984 when she appeared at Prairie View A&M University for the Century II Reading Committee’s “Evening with Maya Angelou” chaired by Dr. Clarissa Booker (nee Thomas). Prior to her performance, she was overwhelmed with a special presentation of her works by the famed Charles Gilpin Players, directed by C. Lee Turner. Angelou was so touched that she included several Gilpins on stage that night with her performance.

By the way, she also donated $1,000 to the Gilpin Scholarship Fund. “I can’t pay you for that performance but I can at least make a donation,” she said with a chuckle. Dr. Angelou wrote of the emotions of the 'caged bird,' remained insistent in her optimism, invoked for Mandela, her signature metaphor of “rising.” That metaphor symbolizes her own life’s message for her as well as Mandela’s: “No sun outlasts its sunset, but it will rise again and bring the dawn.”

Following her dynamic presentation and after all the autographs and picture several students and members of the committee gathered in the President’s campus house where she was spending the night for conversation and sharing of Black history. It was after 10:00 p.m. and folks were getting hungry. Well would you know Dr. Angelou stated ‘You all get the food and I will cook,” and she did! At 11:45 p.m. we were all enjoying grits, sausage, eggs, ham and biscuits prepared by our campus guest. What I learned from my meeting Miss Angelou has stayed with me, i.e. start the program on time, say what you have to say and move on! To close out the night she recited one of her favorite quotes "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." I will say she made all of us feel great that night. Read more on Maya Angelou here (www.mayaangelou.com) for more information.

The Prairie View Chamber of Commerce will host its monthly meeting on Thursday, May 29 at 6:00 p.m. in the George E. Higgs Prairie View National Alumni Building on University Drive. All business owners and entrepreneurs are invited to attend. Mr. George E. Higgs is the president.

The City of Prairie View has a new radio station KTOR 87.9 FM launched from the OpenMic Broadcast Network. The station will feature news, weather and sports updates for the city and parts of the county. It will also simulcast some LIVE sports broadcast during the football and basketball season of 2014 on OBN-Radio on the internet.

The City of Prairie View held monthly meeting on May 27 in the chambers of City Hall and what a marathon of a meeting it was. Following the oath of office for Mayor Frank D. Jackson and council members Paulette Matthews Barnett Herbert Thomas, by Precinct 3 Judge Marian E. Jackson, the meeting convened. Mayor Jackson expressed congratulations to the new council and to outgoing Council Member Dr. Simeon Queen who served on the council for some years.

Queen thanked the citizens for the opportunity to serve and informed the council of next chapter for service in Port Arthur and also introduced his fiancée Jennifer K. Mitchell, whom he plans to marry on June 21 in Houston.

The citizens’ comment took more than hour as members of the Davis Family and other residents addressed the council on the inconsistencies in disapproving the recommendation from the Zoning Committee to convert property on Clark Street from R1 to R3. The members cited several faults in the system which allowed the changes to take place including the issuing of a permit for construction to a company indebted to the city. David Allen former mayoral candidate challenged the council for including the budget discussion to an executive session which violated the city’s ordinance and state rules on open meeting. James Larry also voiced concern of the city’s condemnation and acquisition of his property and failure of the mayor to include his request on the agenda. When it was all said and done, the council voted not to approve the renewal of the contract for the City Attorney Lee Van Richardson and also to cancel the executive session because no counsel would be present.

You invited to the social event of the year: the 8th Annual Red & White Ball on August 23, 2014. The event honors the Prairie View Volunteer Fire Fighting Association, Inc. and Farmers & Ranchers, Cowboys and Cowgirls in Waller County and surrounding areas. The ‘Red Hot Summer’s Night in August’ begins at 7:00 pm in the Willie A. Tempton, Sr. Memorial Student Ballroom at Prairie View A&M University and is open to the public. The committee is seeking sponsorship and donations for its silent auction. Tickets and souvenir ads for the ball are available through August 9, 2014. Proceeds will support equipment and operations. For information, contact: Belinda Lewis at lewisbelinda@hotmail.com.

The Summer Session for the Gavel Series is set for June 7, 2014 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 Noon in the auditorium of the Don Clarke Juvenile Justice Building at Prairie View A&M University. Some of the topics include Social Security and Disability Claims, Student Financial Aid Abuses and Collections and Drug Charges and Punishment. The Free community-based legal education is open to the public. The Gavel Series is sponsored byte Precinct 3 Judge Marian E. Jackson, Waller County District Attorney Elton Mathis and the PVAMU College of Juvenile Justice and Psychology. For information and registration, contact 936-261-5212.

Your prayers and encouragement are welcomed for Esel Bell, Ernestine Carreathers, William H. Chapman, Irene Davis, B. J. Freeman, Betty Hall, Timothy Hall, Mae Helen James, David Kirkpatrick, James Poindexter, Irene Reid, Willie Smith, Mary Ann Stubblefield, Theola Woods and Douglas Woolfolk. May God’s peace be with you!

HAPPY MAY BIRTHDAY TO: Mary Jean Manuel (29), Samuel E. Brown (30), Norman Hunter (30) and Iantha Watson Lang (31). HAPPY JUNE BIRTHDAY TO: Robert Kinney (1), Alfred Parks (1), Jimmie Lewis (3), Mary Smith Thibodeaux (3), Shatavia Turner (4), Karsyn Roberson (5), Shirley Mehn (8), Gloria Perez (10), Michelle Shatteria (10), Ivory Nelson (11), Allan Sweet (11), Helen Dunham (12), Alfred Parks (12), Clarence Talley (12), Donyelle Muse (13), Andre’ Pitre (13) and Monica Harden (18). HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to John and Sherylle Fuller (12), Nicole and Armando Gutierrez, Jr. (14) and Glen and Debra Berry (18).

THE VIEW FROM THE HILL: The Career Outreach and Service Center at Prairie View A&M University is gearing up for its summer program, the ExxonMobil/Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp, themed Forensic Science on June 15-27, 2014. Campers will come from Austin, Burleson, Brazos, Colorado, Fayette, Lee, Grimes, Montgomery, Waller, Washington and Wharton. Contact Career Services at 936-261-3570 for more information.

Until next week, in the words from the final tweet of remarkable renaissance poet/actress and activist Dr. Maya Angelou, "Listen to yourself and in that quietude you might hear the voice of God." Keep the news, achievements and recognitions coming to P. O. Box 2906, Prairie View, Texas 77446 or prairieviewtoday@iwon.com.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Mr. Kkoby Girffin from American Red Cross is Men's Breakfast Speaker

Mr. Kkoby Griffin, Regional Disaster Preparedness Manager at American Red Cross, Greater Houston is the speaker for the Men's Prayer Breakfast on May 17 at St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church. The Free breakfast runs from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. in the church's Parish Hall on 204 Dolley Street in Prairie View.

Mr. Griffin will share his community involvement through his personal and professional experiences.

He has a wide array of experiences in the military and community involvement having served in the Air National Guard, the Veteran’s Administration and Disaster Preparedness with the American Red Cross, and also an Emergency Management Contractor.

He has a life-long commitment to the community and helping others. Mr. Griffin is most proud of his daughter a college student and his son, a middle school student.

The men are invite to suggest topics for discussions and speakers for future programs and also their desire to participate in the programs.

Patrons are asked to confirm their attendance at 936-857-3272 or Email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net.

Members of the community are also invited to participate in the church's Christian Education/Bible Study on Fridays from 7:00-8:00 p.m. and the worship service on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. and the fellowship following the service.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Dr. James E. Johnson is Men's Breakfast Speaker

Dr. James E. Johnson is the speaker for the Men’s Prayer Breakfast to be held on this Saturday, April 26, 2014 at 8:30 a.m. -10:30 a.m. in the Parish Hall of St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church, 204 Dooley Street. Dr. Johnson, retired professor education at Texas Southern and Prairie View A&M University. Dr. Johnson holds the Bachelors Degree in Agriculture from Prairie View A&M University and the Doctorate of Education from Texas A&M University. In addition to his experiences in education, Dr. Johnson is an author, farmer and one time upholsterer. The men in the community are invited join us for this free event and ask that you invite and bring a friend with you. Please confirm at 936-857-3272 or email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net. The members of the community are also invited to participate in our Holy Week of activities St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church Holy Week Activities April 17 Maundy Thursday Service at 6:00 p.m. April 18 Good Friday - Stations of the Cross at 12:00 Noon. April 19 Great Easter Vigil at 6:00 p.m. April 20 Easter Sunday –Eucharist at 11:00 a.m. You are also invited to participate in our Christian Education/Bible Study on Fridays from 7:00-8:00 p.m. and the worship service on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. and the fellowship following the service.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Chief Johnson is Men's Breakfast Speaker at St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church

The men of St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church will host its monthly Men’s Prayer Breakfast on this Saturday, March 15, 2014 at 8:30 a.m. -10:30 a.m. in the Parish Hall of the church, 204 Dooley Street in Prairie View. All men of the community are invited to participate in the free breakfast.

The speaker for the occasion is Mr. Larry Johnson, Chief of the Prairie View Police Department. Mr. Johnson has more than thirty-eight years of experiences in Law Enforcement and community involvement in the judicial system. Johnson believes in community policing with a strong emphasis on geographical accountability. He is a graduate of the Bryan/College Station Chamber of Commerce Leadership Brazos class.

His community involvement includes serving as Board President for the College Station ISD School, the Brazos Valley Counsel on Alcohol and Substance Abuse, and the Lincoln Center. He also served on the advisory boards of American Heart Association and Habitat for Humanity; and College Station Morning Rotary Club, Volunteer Mediator, Dispute Resolution Center and the Brazos Animal Shelter, to name a few. He is also an ordained minister as serves as Pastor of the St. Matthew Baptist Church in College Station.

Mr. Johnson and his wife Mary have been married for 30 years and they have four children Yvonne, LaRhesa, Landon and Nickolas.

Members of the community are also invited to participate the church's Christian Education/Bible Study on Fridays from 7:00-8:00 p.m. and the worship service on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. and the fellowship following the service.

Please confirm at 936-857-3272 or email: stfrancispv@sbcglobal.net.

UPCOMING EVENTS: Holy Week in Commemoration of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ April 17 - Maundy Thursday - 6:00 p.m. April 18 - Good Friday - Stations of the Cross - 12:00 noon (Fish Fry to follow service) April 19 - The Great Vigil of Easter - 6:00 p.m. April 20 - Easter Sunday Service - 11:00 a.m. May 15 - Sharing the Faith Dinner - TBA