More than 250 supporters and devotees of the Brooklyn Oldtimers Foundation, Inc. gathered Sunday, December 13 afternoon at Antun’s in Queens Village to applaud the group’s exceptional record of stellar service to New York City during its 37 years of existence.
The classy annual affair recognizes young people, business owners, educators, professionals and association members who have made outstanding contributions to the communities they serve, said Mr. Reuben C. Bankhead, BOF President.
Over the past 37 years, the BOF, through these annual fundraising events, has awarded 124 scholarships totaling nearly $350,000. “In each of these years, the BOF with the help of its friends, has granted financial assistance to more than 200 Central Brooklyn High School graduates,” he said. “We have also acknowledged and celebrated the work of a pantheon of prominent community leaders by listing them on our distinguished Honoree Scroll. “It’s the chance to recognize our own.”
The scholarship awards were presented to Naytira S. Baker, from George Wingate H.S. and on her way to Daemon College; Keith G. Salhab, graduate of Boys & Girls H.S., who is now at Howard University; Paul Robeson High School alumnus Avion Alexander of NYC College of Technology and Robert Garcia, who attended Thomas Jefferson, and now is excelling at NYC College of Technology. Each student received $1,000 per year for a period of four years.
The Foundation’s in-kind work with the students, including nurturing them, positioning them, counseling and being a phone-call away if there are any problems can easily bring the total scholarship gift over the past 37 years to $1 million dollars.
This year, the Foundation honored Jennifer P. Small, one of its former scholarship recipients, now a Client Service Representative with Citi’s Prime Finance Division, by listing her with the Honoree Roll Class of 2009. That list also included Doris D. Bell, Director of the Frank R. Bell Funeral Home; Dyrnest K. Sinckler, Executive Vice President and Chief operating Officer of Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (BSRC); Bernice E. Green and David M. Greaves, publishers of Our Time Press; and architect T. Barrett Stanley, BOF Board Member and Founder/President of Stanley Architects/Planners of Brooklyn, NY.
Our Time Press publishers were very proud of their induction with fellow and sister community servants into the Oldtimers’ Honoree Roll and to be in the company of previous inductees Sydney S. Moshette, Jr., MSW, an Oldtimers’ Board member; Samuel Pinn, chairman, Fort Greene Council, Inc. and award-winning athlete Mary DeSaussure Sobers, who were present at the December 13 event.
Others in the tony crowd included: community activists Doris Pinn andEdna Moshette; The Rev. Johnny Youngblood, pastor, Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church and pastor emeritus of St. Paul’s Community Baptist Church; Writer Matrice Brooks; Colvin Grannum, President and CEO, Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp.; Councilman Al and Mildred Vann; socialite Barbara Sidbury; Bernard Gassaway, principal of Boys & Girls H.S.; Father Garver Israel of St. Philips Episcopal Church; and so many more.
Brooklyn Borough President, an unfailing presence at the Oldtimers’ annual events, was sidelined by a minor traffic accident that rainy day, but his fond wishes made it to the event and were well-received.
Highlighting “the afternoon of nostalgia and remembrance” was a rousing “Circle of Brothers” ceremonial march; and call and shout by the Oldtimers Foundation. Board and associate members.
Board Member deftly handled the Lawrence Boatwright master of ceremonies duties at this lively, classy event, which featured the lively music and rhythms of The Ron Anderson Band.
This year’s event was organized and elegantly hosted by BOF’s Board of Directors, including Mr. Bankhead, James N. Tempro, Alfred S. Welch, Mr. Stanley, James Dupree, Mr. Moshette, Roger P. Montgomery, G. Nesbitt Benjamin, Charles P. Coombs, Edwin S. Douglas, Jr., Charles A. Foster, Elisha R. Gill, Thomas R. Leach, Darnley Osborne, Mr. Boatwright and John Johnson. Bernice Elizabeth Green