Teesee’s Town

Congrats to Jermikko, award-winning Chicago designer and manufacturer, whose label includes high-end contemporary novelty coats, jackets, suits and dresses in natural fibers with colorful whimsical detailing and appliquΘs in addition to eveningwear in

   Congrats to Jermikko, award-winning Chicago designer and manufacturer, whose label includes high-end contemporary novelty coats, jackets, suits and dresses in natural fibers with colorful whimsical detailing and appliquΘs in addition to eveningwear in fine imported silks. Her designs are found in over 650 upscale boutiques, specialty and department stores in the U.S., Ghana, Japan and Australia. And the new good news – she’s just introduced a new division under the label, We Make It For You, inspired by her clients – women and men – who travel and often return with beautiful fabrics and want something “spectacularly made.” Jermikko created this needed diversified area within her present design-studio-factory at 328 W. 18th St.

    “Bring the fabric and a sketch or pattern; we cut it, we sew it, you wear it. It’s just that easy,” says Jermikko, a grad of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a B.F.A. degree, and of the University of Chicago with a psychology degree, former Chicago State Univ. faculty member and recipient of a number of prestigious honors. They include the first African American awarded “Designer of the Year” by the Apparel Industry Board, first and only African American to win the State of Illinois’ “Fashion Designer of the Year” award in 1997 and 2003, named “Manufacturer of the Millennium” in 1999 and “Women’s Clothing Designer of the Year” in 2003. Jermikko is listed as an “Interesting Personality” in the Inaugural Edition of Who’s Who in Black Chicago and in HistoryMakers.

     She began her career in 1968, designing for several companies, including Stanley Korshak. She started her own business in 1979 in a studio apartment with $50, two tree trunks for chairs, a home sewing machine, metal card table, three yards of fabric and a six-pound dog, Lonesome, whose job was to act as the fabric weight. Call (312) 563-1877 or visit www.jermikko.com.      Women’s Work – Hats off to educator extraordinaire Ollie Stokes McLemore, former principal of Beasley Academic Center, who picks up the first-ever Dr. Dorothy I. Height Keeper of the Village Award at the Rainbow/PUSH Women’s Luncheon, June 16, during RP’s Annual Conference at the Hyatt McCormick Hotel. Event spearheads: Jacqueline Jackson, Carolyn Curry, Rev. Willie Taplin Barrow and Angela Ingram … And Jacqueline Jackson (Mrs. Jesse) keynotes the Chicago Defender’s first ever “Salute to First Ladies” (of community churches), June 26, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. For $75 tickets, call (312) 952-1766 …      Rev. Michelle Hughes begins her service as interim pastor of the Congregational Church of Park Manor, United Church of Christ on July 1. Former senior pastor, Rev. Dr. Luther Holland Jr., resigned effective April 25. Rev. Hughes has experience in pastoral care, community organizations’ work and non-profit endeavors. Currently she’s associate chaplain at Elmhurst College and has been associate pastor at Chicago’s Coppin AME Church and DuPage AME Church in Lisle. The graduate of Chicago Theological Seminary and long-time resident of Park Manor, is mom to Nia Randall, 24 and Joshua, 19 …

     Now comes word that Linda Johnson Rice, reigning royalty at the struggling Johnson Publishing Co. (Ebony and Jet magazines), has hired her long-time “best bud,” Desiree Glapion Rogers, former White House social sec’y, former Peoples Energy prez and former head honcho of the Illinois Lottery, to “assist with corporate strategy” at the world’s largest African American owned and operated publishing company. So? That’s what friends do!      Prayer Time! – Spencer Leak Sr., major domo of the funeral home family dynasty, keynotes Black on Black Love’s 15th annual Prayer Breakfast & Youth Awards Celebration on Saturday at Harambee House. Entrepreneurs Ed and Bettiann Gardner, historian Tim Black, educator Dr. Grace Dawson and long-time Black on Black Love supporter “Mother Pearl” Robertson will be honored. Frances Wright, BOBL’s president/CEO, says the breakfast communicates love and peace while citing those who have made an impact via leadership and vision.

     Leak is board chair of BOBL, a crime-prevention initiative founded by Ed Gardner, former owner of Soft Sheen Products. BOBL aims to provide alternatives to black on black crime through programs promoting love, respect and self-discipline, via My Sister’s Keeper, an after-care program for female ex-offenders; a Cook County Jail Motivational & Educational program, youth scholarships, Godfather and Godmother Mentoring Programs and more.

     BOBL will salute emerging leaders with youth awards. Thousands of scholarship dollars and grants to deserving elementary and high school students will be presented. Providing entertainment: KOG Warriors of King of Glory Church of God in Christ, Elder Phinas Alexander of Institutional Deliverance Center COGIC and BOBL’s Inspirational Choir. Sponsors: Namaste Laboratories, Leak & Sons Funeral Home and Ariel Capital. The Prayer Breakfast provides a forum where triumphs of our established leaders and young people can be applauded, says Wright. “In the 15-year history of this event, we’ve awarded over $30,000 to deserving youngsters who are doing well and achieving against tremendous odds.” For tickets and other info, call (773/) 978-0868 or visit www.bobl.org.      Defender Diary – Carol Bell, Chicago Defender finance director, is among several to be honored as “Someone You Should Know in Chicago” when Davis Media Inc., an event-planning corporate networking firm headed by CEO Jacqueline Davis, presents “Tres Blanc Affair” June 18, 6 p.m.-midnight, at Macello, 1235 W. Lake, with entertainment, wine-tastings, food and fun. Attire: white only!  Tickets: $75 (V.I.P.), $50 (@ the door) and $40 (advance). Call (312) 719-0216 … Michael House, Defender president, and Adrienne Jones, community program development director, pick up honors “for outstanding vision and commitment” from Bishop Claude Porter, of Proviso-Leyden Council for Community Action, at its 20th annual Victor Goodell Memorial Golf Classic, June 22, at Hilton Chicago/Indian Lakes Resort in Bloomingdale … And more: House receives the Vernon C. Jarrett Par Excellence in Journalism Award from Carl Latimer’s Coalition for United Community Action on Friday at its 38th Annual Unity Testimonial Awards Banquet at the Palmer House Hilton.     Remembering – Col. Eugene Scott (ret., U.S. Army), president of the Chicago Defender Charities, who commanded tank forces and was the principal staff officer for Training & Operation for the Eighth Infantry Division Combat Force in Germany, was honored at a Memorial Day service hosted by Lincoln, Beverly & Oak Hill Cemeteries at Lincoln’s Veteran’s Memorial. Scott was responsible for training 27,000 soldiers. His 28 years of service included two tours of duty in Vietnam (1965 and 1969). Also cited: lives and accomplishments of James Harvey, Civil War Medal of Honor recipient and pioneer resident of Robbins, and Tyrone Haymore, Robbins trustee and founding member of Robbins Historical Society & Museum … Happy b’day to Wynona Redmond, Art Porter, Aaron Freeman, Irma P. Hall, Christian Fair, Clarence Page, James Bell, Sugar Portis and Howard Mettleson.      Jazz Junkies! – Vocalist Dee Alexander teams up with guitarist Buddy Fambro (who dat?) at Park 52 for this week’s Jazz Wednesday, a duet series at 7 p.m. with food, drink and no cover charge. Next week: Corey Wilkes and Robert Irving III followed by Maggie Brown and Curtis Robinson June 23 … Tammy McCann (her latest CD, Never Let Me Go) sings Cabaret Jazz on Friday, 7 p.m., at Columbus Park Refectory, 5701 W. Jackson. It’s free and family friendly! Host: Jazz Institute of Chicago … Pianist Corky McClerkin tickles the ivories at Hyde Park Shopping Center’s Jazz in The Courtyard, 55th and Lake Park, on Friday, noon-2 p.m. Some seating; bring a chair! Next Friday: Audley Reid on sax … Tap your toes, feel the music when Greta Pope takes over Davenport’s, 1383 N. Milwaukee, Thursday, 8 p.m. Hear music by Ella Fitzgerald, Josephine Baker, Nat King Cole, Eartha Kitt, Duke Ellington, Cole Porter, George Gershwin, etc. … Al Jarreau at Country Club Hills Theater’s Summer Concert Series on Saturday.  

 Copyright 2010 Chicago Defender.

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