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Attorney General of the U.S., Eric H. Holder, to Receive NAACP Chairman’s Award

Eric Holder

Eric Holder

The Honorable, Attorney General of the United States, Eric H. Holder, Jr. is set to receive the NAACP Chairman’s Award during the 46th NAACP Image Awards, broadcast live on Friday, February 6 (9:00 p.m. ET/PT tape-delayed) on TV One, the civil rights organization announced today.

The Chairman’s Award, chosen by Chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors, Roslyn M. Brock, is bestowed in recognition of special achievement and distinguished public service. Past honorees include United States Navy Vice Admiral Michelle Howard, Radio One Founder and Chairperson Cathy Hughes, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Regina Benjamin, Tyler Perry, Former Vice President Al Gore and Dr. Wangari Muta Maathai, Aretha Franklin, Bono, then-Senator Barack Obama, The Dave Matthews Band, Danny Glover, and Forest Whitaker.

“Eric H. Holder, Jr. has a national reputation for his significant work around civil rights and race in America, voting rights, and criminal justice reform.  In honoring Attorney General Holder, the NAACP focuses on his life’s work and accomplishments as our nation’s first African American Attorney General” stated Roslyn M. Brock, Chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors. “I am personally inspired by his many civic commitments including service on the board of Columbia University, the National Center for Victims of Crime, the Meyer Foundation, and the Save the Children Foundation, his expansive legal career including working for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, as well as his positions on a number of tough race-related issues to ensure fair and equitable treatment for all Americans.  It is my honor and privilege to recognize Mr. Holder.”

President Barack Obama nominated Mr. Holder to be Attorney General and his nomination was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 2, 2009. Mr. Holder began his service as the eighty-second Attorney General of the United States the next day. Eric H. Holder, Jr. was born in New York City and attended public schools there, graduating from Stuyvesant High School, before earning a B.A. in American History from Columbia College in 1973 and a J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1976.

Upon his graduation from law school, Mr. Holder joined the Department of Justice through the Attorney General’s Honors Program.  He was assigned to the newly-formed Public Integrity Section, where he investigated and prosecuted corruption involving officials in local, state, and federal government.  In 1988, President Reagan appointed Mr. Holder to serve as an Associate Judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, where he presided over hundreds of criminal and civil trials during his five years on the bench.  In 1993, President Clinton appointed Judge Holder to serve as the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.  In 1997, President Clinton appointed Mr. Holder to serve as Deputy Attorney General of the United States, a position that he held until the end of the Clinton administration.  At the request of President George W. Bush, Mr. Holder served as Acting Attorney General in 2001 pending the confirmation of Attorney General John Ashcroft.

Mr. Holder has received numerous awards in recognition of his professional and civic contributions, including the Department of Justice’s Special Achievement Award, the District of Columbia Bar Association’s Beatrice Rosenberg Award, and George Washington University’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Medal for Outstanding Service in Human Rights.  The District of Columbia Bar Association recognized Mr. Holder as its Lawyer of the Year in 1997.

The NAACP Image Awards celebrates the accomplishment of people of color in the fields of television, music, literature and film and also honors individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors. Winners will be voted upon by NAACP members and announced when the envelopes are opened on Thursday, February 5 during the Awards Ceremony for non-televised categories. The remaining categories will be announced LIVE on stage during the two-hour star-studded TV One telecast on Friday, February 6 (9:00 p.m. ET/PT tape-delated). The telecast will also include a one-hour pre-show airing live from the red carpet (8:00 p.m. ET/PT tape-delayed).

The 46th NAACP Image Awards are sponsored by: AT&T, Bank of America, FedEx, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Gilead Sciences, Hyundai Motor America, PepsiCo, Southwest Airlines and Wells Fargo.

For all information and latest news, please visit the official NAACP Image Awards website at http://www.naacpimageawards.net.


Funeral Slated for South L.A. Presidential Citizens Medal Honoree

Myrtle Faye Rumph with President Barack Obama at the Presidential Citizens Medal awards ceremony at the White House in 2010.

Myrtle Faye Rumph with President Barack Obama at the Presidential Citizens Medal awards ceremony at the White House in 2010.

SOUTH LOS ANGELES, CA- Myrtle Faye Rumph founded a youth center in 1990 in South Los Angeles and named it after her son, killed in a drive-by shooting. Twenty years later in 2010, President Barack Obama presented the then-Inglewood resident with one of 13 Presidential Citizens Medals, our nation’s second highest civilian honor, for her work providing education and recreation for more than 5,000 youth in grades 3-12.

Rumph, founder of the Al Wooten Jr. Heritage Center, passed away on Wednesday, January 7, 2015, at Community Hospital Long Beach after suffering cardiac arrest. She was 83. She was living in Long Beach with her son-in-law and daughter Michael and Barbara Clark.

“My mother was a quiet but passionate woman filled with compassion for all people,” Barbara said. “She dearly loved God, her family, and the children at her center. Her life has left me with such a legacy of how to live life to the fullest.”
A memorial with family and friends, Wooten students and alumni will be held on Monday, January 12, 6 p.m., at the Wooten Center at 9106 S. Western Ave., Los Angeles. Participants are planning a lively home going with candles, posters, horns and a flower-planting in front of the center.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, January 16, 11 a.m. at Faithful Central Bible Church, 400 W. Florence Ave., Inglewood. Rumph will be buried at Inglewood Cemetery Mortuary next to her husband Harris Rumph and eldest son Al Wooten, Jr., who died on January 19, 1989.

Myrtle Faye Rumph was born on February 21, 1931 on the Griffith League sharecropping farm in Chisholm, Tex. She was the fifth of 10 children born to Rev. Enoch and Adell Ross.

Rumph worked as an independent seamstress for many years as a single parent in Watts, where she lived in the Imperial Courts Housing Project with her three children after a divorce to Al Wooten, Sr., an Air Force lieutenant. She witnessed the beginnings of the Watts Riot in 1965 across from her business on 103rd and Central. Two months later, she married sanitation worker Harris Rumph and moved to a home in South Los Angeles. The couple owned and operated several businesses, including a lawn service, coin-operated laundry and 28-unit apartment building.

The Rumphs were owners of H&M Moving and Storage on 91st and Western when gang members murdered Al, a reported innocent victim of a gang initiation. After a year of meetings and planning with family and friends, Rumph rented a storefront next door to H&M for $400/month. Within a year, she sold her Inglewood home to help pay the center’s bills.

The Wooten Center opened in 1990 with four pre-teen boys, taggers who used to hang out on the corner in front of the Rumph’s business. The four boys now ages 30-plus are expected to attend the memorial and funeral.

Today, the Wooten Center provides afterschool, summer, gang prevention, SAT-prep and other college readiness programs for more than 500 students in grades 3-12 at the center, local schools and other community sites. For more information, call executive director Naomi McSwain at (323) 756-7203, x28, or visit their Website at www.wootencenter.org.

High Desert Martin Luther King Celebration Events


Monday, January 19th 2015



 Presented by Victor Valley NAACP Branch 1082

 Join us in the commemoration and Dedication !!!

 Hear brief updates on the issues and concerns of the community from Honorable Darren Parker, San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department, and Victorville City Manager Doug Robertson presenting the Civil Rights Memorial.


Date & Time: 10:a.m.

 MONDAY, JANUARY 19, 2015(MLK Holiday) 

Location : Corner of Seneca Rd. and Civic Dr . near Victorville City Hall     

14343 Civic Dr., Victorville, CA 92393


This event is FREE to the public. ALL ARE WELCOME!!!!!!!


   For more information, call (760) 964-7364 
Monday, January 19th 2015
11:30a.m. – 3:00p.m.
McKays Mortuary and High Desert-Inland Valley News will host Martin Luther King Day post Freedom March ‘Warming Station’. The event will feature guest speakers, poetry, freedom songs and music by talented local artists.
Vendors available, and delicious complimentary foods/beverages will be served.
McKays Mortuary
14444 7th Street
Victorville, CA 92395
Call (760) 887-3746 or (760) 951-4589 for information
Monday, January 19th 2015
5:00p.m. – 7:00p.m.
High Desert Black Heritage Committee
Annual King Day Celebration variety show and events. Commemoration service, musical artists, speakers.
Victor Valley College
18422 Bear Valley Road
Victorville, CA 92395


                  MLK HOLIDAY BLOOD DRIVE

The Diocese of San Bernardino-Catholics of African Descent and LifeStream have convened the coalition of community partners to conduct the 15th Annual “Blood of the Martyrs” Blood Drive on January 19, 2015 the Martin Luther King holiday.

Blood donations will be made in honor of the man who gave his blood for this country and also increasing the incidence of bold donation among non-donors historically. Blood donations by African Americans have increased by 300% in the Inland Empire. Moreover the event will help keep alive the memory of Dr Kings for generations who were not born when the he was martyred.

All four official blood bank sites, flying the Blood of the Martyrs banner, will be manned by volunteers for the coalition who will encourage sign-ups prior to the holiday and recruit walk-ins to donate in honor of Dr. King. Sites will be open on varying schedules. Other sites, such as churches, will be serviced by LifeStream mobile units.

For donors who cannot donate on the holiday, may do so on any date for the balance of the month of January at the official sites.

Coalition members include fraternal, religious and service organizations in the Inland Empire such as Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inland Empire Black Nurses, Knight of Peter Claver& Ladies Auxiliary, St. Anthony Catholic Church, Eccelesia Community Church and the National Council of negro Women, both the Inland Empire Section and the Victorville Section.

For time schedules, directions and other information, call David Okwonkwo at the Diocese of San Bernardino 909-475-5194- or Don Escalante at Lifestream at 909-885-6503-. Donors may also call the various sites:
San Bernardino     909-8856503
Riverside               951-687-2530
Ontario                 909-987-3158
High Desert         760-849-9700