SUMMER IN AMERICA
NEW YORK CITY : The latest edition of CITYSTATE/NY includes the BROOKLYN POWER 100. Brooklyn is center of Downstate Black political power. The following is a list of Blacks and Latinos who occupy the top 20 spots in the Brooklyn elite. NYC Mayor Eric Adams #1; Letitia James NYS Attorney General, 3; Representative Hakeem Jeffries, 4; Brooklyn DA Eric Gonzalez, 5; Representative Nydia Velazquez, 7; Jumaane Williams, NYC Public Advocate, 8; Ingrid Lewis-Martin, special adviser to Hizzoner Adams, 9;
Representative Yvette Clarke, 11; NYS Assembly member and Brooklyn Democratic Party Leader Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn, 12; Brooklyn Boro Prexy Antonio Reynoso, 13; NYS Senators Zellnor Myrie, Kevin Parker and Roxanne Persaud, 17; and Sr. Pastor Christian Cultural Center, A.R. Bernard, 19.
Last week’s online newspaper, The City ran an essay “Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn Railed Against Brooklyn Democratic Machine. Then She Became it.” A sequel to The City piece, “Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn’s Time As Brooklyn Democratic Leader May Be Nearing Its End, ” appeared in another online newspaper, City & State NY, a few days later. Bichotte Hermelyn denies any Democratic Party rupture and says “Look at who’s writing the stories. I am a victim of bias.” A Democratic Brooklyn leader and a NYS Assembly member, she is also one of Mayor Adams’ minions.
Republicans and Democrats are in disarray. It’s a national problem. Recent polls reveal that Trump supported candidates for the US Senate are not popular with Republicans. Low poll approval numbers for President Biden cannot climb out of the 30s doldrum. However, in theoretical races with Trump, Biden emerges victorious. Vice President Kamala Harris’s poll numbers are also low compared with 2024 GOP Presidential hopeful Florida governor DeSantis. Veep Harris also outperforms DeSantis in polls. What crazy times!
Sandra Douglass Morgan was named president of the Las Vegas Raiders, an NFL, National Football League franchise, a first for an African- American woman. A Las Vegas attorney, she chaired the Nevada Gaming Control Board and sits on the boards of many Las Vegas corporations.
UNITED KINGDOM: Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson beset by scandals, lies, and the awkward BREXIT process, recently announced that he would step down. Olukemi Olufunto (nee Adedoke) Badenoch, 42, British-born conservative, the daughter of Nigerians, is interested in the PM job. A member of Parliament, she was the cabinet member in charge of the Equalities and Local Government Ministries, before resigning last week. A software and IT engineer with a law degree, Olukemi Badenoch, is one of many Conservatives who want to succeed Johnson.
Blondel Pinnock was named president of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation effective July 1. The first woman to helm the BSRC, the nation’s first community development organization, founded in 1967, Pinnock is its first new president in more than 20 years. She IS THE first woman to helm the BSRC, the nation’s first community development organization which was founded in 1967. Pinnock arrives at BSRC with impeccable credentials. Her most recent position was COO, at the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation. Before that, she did stints at Carver Federal Saving Bank as its Chief Lending Officer and at the Bank of America, as SVP. The native New Yorker, graduated from Columbia University and the Hofstra University Law School.
ARTS AND CULTURE
MUSIC: This year is the year of music master and jazz legend bassist/pianist Charles Mingus centennial. Jazz in the Valley presents a concert in his honor, featuring musicians Buster Williams , Craig Harris, Regina Carter and Camille Thurman, which will be held on August 21 at noon, in Poughkeepsie, NY. Visit jazzinthevalleyny.org
Harlem Presents the Harlem Opera Festival, a celebration of the next Generation of Opera Singers, on July 16 and 17 from 7:00 to 7:45 pm at the Richard Rodgers, Marcus Garvey Park, Harlem, with performances by Sopranos Carimi Hillaire and Manna K Jones; Tenor Bernard Holcombe; and Bass Baritone Samuel McDonald. Gregory Hopkins provides music accompanists. Opera Festival precedes Classical Theatre of Harlem production of a reimagining of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. Visit harlemoperatheater.org
FILM: The newly-established PBS/William Greaves Production Funder, named after legendary film documentarian Bill Greaves, launches a program targeted to midcareer filmmakers from diverse backgrounds which will underwrite documentaries for PBS distribution. The open call for applications lasts through August 8. Visit Bit.ly/greaves rd22.
EDUCATION: One Hundred Black Men of New York will host Scholar Golf Day on Monday, August 8 for a coveted $5000 prize. The winner must be from age 18-24; enrolled at a college for Fall 2022 Semester; must attend 3 free golf training classes, and attend the OHBM Golf Classic. Contact Valone Brown Jr at 845.581.0007 or email vbrown@OHBM.org.
RIP Adam Wade, 87, passed away at his home in New Jersey. The Pittsburgh artist excelled in music, film, and theater. Wade the vocalist, compared to Mathis and Nat King Cole, made the Billboard Top 100 List, with three songs, including “Take Good Care of Her,” in 1961. Wade the actor’s film credits include “Shaft,” “Claudine,” and “Across 110 Street.” His TV credits are legion: “Good Times,” “The Jeffersons,” “Sanford & Son.” He also wrote and directed, “On Kentucky Avenue,” a theater piece about famous Black club in Atlantic City, frequented by locals, Ellington and Sinatra. Wade was the first Black to host a TV game show MUSICAL CHAIRS, in the United States. He is survived by his wife Jeree, their four children and grandchildren.
RIP: Nigerian Dr. Mohammad Barkindo, 63, Secretary General of OPEC, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries since 2016, died last week in Nigeria. OPEC is the 13-member organization responsible for 80% of the world’s oil production. He was an OPEC turnaround specialist.
A Harlem-based management consultant/griot, Victoria can be contacted at email@example.com