Jamell Meeks chairs Walgreens-sponsored ‘First Ladies Health Day’

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“The First Lady” of Salem Baptist Church, Jamell (Mrs. James T.) Meeks, is chair of Sunday’s campaign during which some 40 churches in Chicagoland are hosting free health screenings in an effort to tip the scales in favor of African Amer

“The First Lady” of Salem Baptist Church, Jamell (Mrs. James T.) Meeks, is chair of Sunday’s campaign during which some 40 churches in Chicagoland are hosting free health screenings in an effort to tip the scales in favor of African Americans living healthier lives. The Walgreens-sponsored First Ladies Health Day, named for a group of ambassadors who are also the wives of Chicago ministers, will offer a convenient opportunity for community members to get free, on-site screenings for various illnesses that are disproportionately high in African American communities.

Screenings will include HIV/AIDS, blood pressure, hepatitis C, depression, glucose, cholesterol and information on migraines and other illnesses. Health experts from Walgreens pharmacies, Ill. Dept. of Public Health, Chicago Dept.. of Public Health, AIDS Foundation of Chicago, Black Nurses Ass’n and American Diabetes Ass’n will perform the tests. In addition, Chicago Firefighters will be on-hand at several churches to demonstrate CPR. John Gremer, Walgreens’ director of community affairs initiated the program in 2008 when nearly 200 ministers’ wives met with medical experts to discuss the high rate of HIV/AIDS among African Americans. The First Ladies Campaign expanded in 2010 to include the health day and several additional illnesses. Visit http://www.firstladieshealth.com for more on the First Ladies Health Day.

Legacy Legend – Publishing executive, Linda Johnson Rice, president and chief executive officer of Johnson Publishing Co. (Ebony and Jet magazines), picks up the distinguished Chicago Legacy Award during Columbia College Chicago’s Open Doors Gala 2011 at CCC’s Media Production Center, 16th and State Streets, on Nov. 5. The coveted award honors those “who have made a significant impact in the Chicago community and helped open doors for future generations.” Contributions will provide scholarships for Chicago Public Schools grads to attend Columbia. Gala co-chairs: Richard P. Kiphart, Sylvia Neil and Pamela Kendall Rijos.

Soul Stage – Two highly popular multi-Grammy nominated entertainers, Common, the Hip-Hop rapper, artist and actor, and Richard Smallwood, the gospel music phenom, take centerstage at Friday’s “Trinity Presents!,” a celebration of 50 years of worship and arts. The concert, touted as “music to stir your soul,” will be staged at the 6,000-plus seat University of Illinois/Chicago Forum, located at Roosevelt Rd. and Halsted St. It will also feature Trinity United Church of Christ’s Choral Ensemble, Sanctuary Choir, Men’s and Women’s Choruses, along with the Dance, Mime, Drill and Drama Ministries. (Common, a lifelong TUCC member, often raps at special worship services.) Doors open at 7 p.m. and the event also includes a VIP Reception with photo ops with the guest artists. “Fifty Years of Trinity: History & Highlights” begins the evening’s celebration followed by the musical program at 8 p.m. Buy advance tickets at the church, 400 W. 95th St., in the Akiba Bookstore. Rev. Otis Moss III is TUCC senior pastor. Call (773) 962-5650 for more information.

B’Day Bonus – The place to be on Oct. 7 from 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m. is the 22nd annual Birthday Celebration of Carter Russell (of Universal Music fame), at the popular nite-spot, Transit, 1431 W. Lake St. The yearly $50 per ticket fundraiser supports Clara’s House, a West Englewood shelter and resource center for battered and homeless women and children founded by Clara Kirk, its president. Libations for the first hour are sponsored by Southern Wines & Spirits and Moet and Chandon; Shady Brady is guest DJ and the entire evening is in memory of Carter’s “brother,” John “Johnny Boy” Alongi. Wanna know more and/or to reserve tickets, call (312) 567-1123.

Happy B’Day – to Monique Caradine, Phillip Jackson, Rev. Otis Moss III, Wanda Norris, FreDrena Brown, Charles Boyce, Temple Hemphill, Sandra Gresham-Rawls, Yvette Moore Jewel Montgomery, James Williams, Marc Fambro, Jennifer Schultz, Kwame Steve Cobb, Deb Davis, Yvonne Randle, Julienne Malveaux, Antonia Daymond, Valinda D. Jones, Gardella Weathersby, Derek Barber, David Miller, Byron Hooks, Tammi Barlow, Vanessa Smith and Jan Camps Coleman.

Newsy Names – Soulful vocalist Terisa Griffin performs “all the way live” on Oct. 15 during “A Black & White Gala,” a benefit dinner dance and concert at and for Metropolitan Apostolic Community Church, 4100 S. King Drive, pastored by Rev. Leon D. Finney Jr. It all begins at 5 p.m. with dinner, followed by the concert and dancing at 6:30 p.m. Buy tickets by calling Cecilia Peeler, (773) 313-9146… Best wishes to Beverly Reed-Scott on her new enterprise, Momma Earth Times, and Sustainable Treasures for mind, body, home and garden. Her work with the Chicago Defender Charities has made a huge difference in the lives of many youngsters and she’ll be missed and not easily forgotten … Rev. Theola Jones comes “home” to Sixth Grace Presbyterian Church, 600 E. 35th St., to deliver the message at its Women’s Day worship service on Sunday, 11 a.m. A Reception in Register Hall will follow …

Dollars for Scholars – Level Playing Field has created the Wallace “Gator” Bradley Scholarship for Taylor Business Institute students, the first of several to honor various Chicago leaders. Bradley, a socio-political activist and former gang member, transformed his life when given a second chance by Cook County Commissioner Jerry Butler who hired him as an aide in the 1990s. For over 20 years, Bradley has dedicated his life to shaping and redefining African American communities through countless programs and initiatives, so says Lonnie Jenkins. LPF president

Founded in 2002, LPF has awarded over $750,000 in scholarships to 300-plus TBI students who have gone on to pursue both higher education and successful careers, achieving a level of accomplishment that wouldn’t have been possible without financial assistance. The Bradley Scholarships support at-risk youth living in communities challenged with high unemployment, staggering rates of incarceration and numerous negative influences. “Innovative alternative education opportunities, scholarship support, training, and job placement programs are needed to address these issues,” said Janice Parker, president of TBI, which is located 318 W. Adams. Visit http://www.tbiil.edu, http://www.lpf-chicago.org or contact KT Communications, (312) 543-5505.

Copyright 2011 Chicago Defender

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