Mannequins name Chicago’s ‘Best-Dressed African American Women’

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Dorothy Tucker, nine-time Emmy winning reporter who has worked for CBS Chicago for more than 26 years, and Darlene Hill, a Peabody Award-winning news broadcaster who has reported for Fox Chicago News for over 16 years, are among 10 Chicago area African Am

Dorothy Tucker, nine-time Emmy winning reporter who has worked for CBS Chicago for more than 26 years, and Darlene Hill, a Peabody Award-winning news broadcaster who has reported for Fox Chicago News for over 16 years, are among 10 Chicago area African American women who’ve been named “Best Dressed for 2011.” The10 will be publicly saluted by the Society of Mannequins (formerly the Association of Mannequins) during their annual luncheon and presentation on March 13 at DiNolfo’s Banquets in suburban Mokena. This is the first year that Tucker and Hill have been selected for the prestigious honor. One other woman has been named, but because she is traveling and has not been notified of the honor, her name has been temporarily withheld from this announcement.

Other “first year” awardees: Dianne Bradie Baskin, Shirley Callahan, Rev. Jo Anne Long and Alice Sharp McCann; named for the second consecutive year: Dr. S. Theresa Barker and Dina L. Everage; and the third year honoree is Zenobia Evans.

Lee Brown is president of SOM, whose membership is comprised of Windy City and suburban fashionistas who have been deemed “best dressed” by their sister peers for three consecutive years, are no longer eligible for competition and are automatically elevated to membership in the Society of Mannequins. The 10 will gather on Jan. 30 at the Oak Lawn residence of Cheryl Marshall Washington, an SOM member, for a lavish reception in their honor.

Formal Wear ¡ A most prestigious group of some 250 of Chicago’s male “movers and shakers,” known collectively as The Chicago Assembly, annually host a “by invitation only“ Holiday Ball at the Hyatt Regency Hotel – traditionally on Dec. 26. A line on this year’s invite informed guests of the attire for all attendees: “black tuxedos and black bow ties” for the gentlemen and for the ladies, “long formal dresses (no pants).” Unfortunately, some guests disregarded the required dress code and showed up in non-black business suits and ties, and short cocktail dresses and/or pants, which caused hosts embarrassment when they were asked to speak to their guests about their inappropriate attire. In fact, even one of the Chicago Assembly members escorted his “lady friend” who was “inappropriately attired.”

But on the “flip side,” we hear a number of potential guests who were willing to pay to attend the Holiday Ball were accommodated by Assembly members who “sold” invites instead of inviting guests on a “complimentary be my guest basis.” Glad to hear, however, that Neal Harris, one of the long-time Assembly members and a past president, was on hand after having been absent because of illness.

The exclusive black-tie evening included cocktails, dinner, dancing and the presentation of the Chicago Assembly Foundation’s yearly scholarship to a deserving young person. Auggeretto Battiste is president of the Chicago Assembly and among past presidents are Charles A. Davis Sr., Garland W. Watt, Rogers J. Mitchell, Winston McGill, Fred Hoard and D. Adolphus Rivers. Other current officers: Albert R. Tyler III, Floyd E. Carroll II and Albert E. Foster. The Chicago Assembly was incorporated May 4, 1932!

Newsy Names ¡¡– Sympathy to Betty Towns on the loss of her husband, Cliff, the certified public accountant, business man and former owner of two Checker fast food eateries. Private arrangements are being planned ... Happy b’day to 96-year-old Elizabeth Miller, Stephanie L. Green, Cheryl Pearson McNeil, Don Jackson, Judge Arnette Hubbard, Betty Clawson, Robin Rice-Foster, Lisa Finch, Dan Parker, Larry Whitman, Denise Mathews, Damon Williams, Armstead Allen, Barbara Holt, Amazon Smiley, Blanche McKnight Barber, Jeanette Conrad-Ellis, Raynard Villa Hall, Karen Pride, Cynthia Washington, Tim Jackson, Ginger Renee Wilson, Gwen Kenner-Johnson, Pearline Haywood, Ivory Haygood. Pam Rogers, Carol Lee, Edith Peters, Velma Hill, Kim Coles, Debbie Allen Hearty “halleleuyers” and “way to go” wishes to Ethel Nelson-Greer, 76, mom of 10 who received a B.S. degree in psychology from Chicago State University at last month’s commencement. The Cook County hospital retiree is a St. John Church Baptist parishioner … Birthday girl Betty R. Clawson, major domo of Dudley Beauty College Chicago celebrated Sunday when her non-profit BRC Scholarship Foundation hosted her friends and colleagues to an afternoon of relaxing services. Costs of manicures, pedicures, facials, body wraps, shampoos and stylings were donated to the foundation “to help create future entrepreneurs.”

Movin’ Up! Rashada Whitehead, managing director of Flowers Communications Group, has been named president by its founder and CEO, D. Michelle Flowers Welch. At a time when many small to mid-sized agencies are finding a benefit in mergers and acquisitions, the Chicago-based multicultural communications firm is choosing to remain independent in its mission to provide quality public relations and integrated marketing services to its vibrant and growing roster of client partners.

Whitehead, who rejoined the agency in 2008 as its first appointed managing director, has quickly leveraged the company’s equity in the marketplace, making it poised for tremendous growth, says Welch. “When I started the company 20 years ago,” she says, “it was my vision to create a legacy of leadership that filled a void in the marketplace.”

Year 2011 marks the 20th year anniversary of FCG which focuses on African American and Hispanic consumer markets, but is quickly expanding its capabilities to service other consumer segments. Whitehead will be responsible for leading the firm into its next phase of thought leadership. Her promotion is the first of a series of exciting changes the agency is unveiling over the next year to celebrate its 20th year.

Kappa Korner ¡– Attention 9th, 10th and 11th grade young men who have high hopes to attend a top-tier college are invited to attend a free admission informational presentation at Kenwood Academy High School, 5015 S. Blackstone, sponsored by the Kappa Leadership Institute/Chicago on Saturday, 10 a.m. -12:30 p.m. Come and learn how to gain admission into this college readiness program, aka the “Kappa League.” This 501c3 non-profit program provides extensive academic enhancement, college-readiness and leadership mentoring to high performing, under-represented and/or disadvantaged young men in grades 9-12 from high schools throughout the Chicago area. Parents are also encouraged to attend with their young man. To register online, visit www.kappaleaguechicago.org. Call (312) 276-6722.

Music Magic ¡ Allen Toussaint on piano, Don Byron on clarinet and Nicholas Payton on trumpet, hosted by Symphony Center Presents Jazz Series make up Toussaint’s The Bright Mississippi which will perform Friday, 8 p.m., at , 220 S. Michigan. Call (312) 294-3000 or log on www.CSO.org … Nat’l Association of African Americans in Human Resources, Chicago Chapter, jumpstarts 2011 by partnering with Chicago Sinfonietta’s Project Inclusion Ensemble on Thursday, 5:30 p.m., at DePaul Univ., 1 E. Jackson. Cost: $20. Founded in 1987 by Maestro Paul Freeman under the mission of “Musical Excellence Through Diversity,” the Sinfonietta is Chicago’s premier mid-size professional orchestra and cultural crossroads, featuring talented soloists, composers and musicians of color. The agenda: 5:30 p.m., Meet & Greet; 6 :30 p.m., Welcome & State of the Union Address; 7 p.m., Sinfonietta Performance; and 8 p.m., Closing & Networking.

Copyright 2011 Chicago Defender

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