Special to the Guide
The New Chesapeake Men for Progress Education Foundation, Inc. celebrated its Ninth Annual Black Male Achievement and Scholarship Breakfast Award program Saturday May 6, 2017 at the Chesapeake Conference Center. Approximately 600 students, parents, State delegates, Congressman, city officials and sponsors attended the event.
Chesapeake Mayor, The Honorable Alan P. Krasnoff, and David Washington, President of the New Chesapeake Men for Progress, welcomed guests, and Delvin Joppy, Senior, Indian River Middle School sang the National Anthem. In explaining the occasion, George F. Reed pointed out the significance of the students’ achievements, and applauded the academic success of the city’s schools.
Reed noted the Chesapeake School District is number one among the seven cities that constitute Hampton Roads with the highest on-time graduation rate.
The Honorable C. E. Cliff Hayes, Jr., Delegate, 77th District, VA House of Delegates, introduced the keynote speaker, Edward H. Baine, PE., Senior Vice, Distribution for Dominion Virginia Power. Mr. Baine focused his speech on passion, preparation, persistence and promise.
Addressing the middle and high school students, Mr. Baine encouraged them to develop a passion and purpose for their career and life; prepare continuously and never stop learning; be persistent in their pursuits and seek help when needed; and fulfill the promise of a good life and believe in yourself. He spoke from personal experience as he has excelled as a professional Engineer, MEGA Mentor, corporate leader, and father of three boys.
Dr. Anita B. James, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, Chesapeake Public Schools, and David K. Ropp, City President, Towne Bank, congratulated the students on their success and encouraged them to continue their education.
The Foundation President, Dr. William E. Ward, and Dr. Darnell Johnson, Chairman, Education and Scholarship Committee, presented Academic Achievement Awards to 10 middle school students, one from each of Chesapeake’s 10 middle schools, for their academic achievements and leadership. The middle school initiative is a partnership between the Foundation and Chesapeake Public Schools designed to reduce the dropout rate and increase the academic success of Black male students.
Seven high school students, one from each of Chesapeake’s seven high schools, were awarded $1,000 scholarships and 13 students were awarded $200 book stipends. Since 2010, the Foundation has awarded $108,000 in scholarships and book stipends and approximately $3,000 in school supplies to its adopted Title I schools in the City.
The President, Dr. William E. Ward presented the Foundation’s Dr. James R. Jackson Public Service Award to Councilwoman, Dr. Ella P. Ward, for her public and educational service to the City, and State. The Community Service award was posthumously presented to Harriett Fulford Goodrich, in honor of long-time Foundation member and community servant, Eugene Andrew Goodrich. Colonel William Clayton Bennett was awarded the President’s Award for his commitment and work to increase the Foundation’s membership and fundraising initiatives.
The Honorable C. E. Cliff Hayes, Jr., presented from the Commonwealth of Virginia General Assembly, House Resolution Number 430, commending the Foundation for granting scholarships to minority students, school supplies to Title I schools, and being a respectful organization that take pride in embracing the values of leadership, integrity, excellence, and impacting the lives of children in the Commonwealth and nation.
Towne Bank and Dominion Resources were Silver Sponsors of this event. Other major sponsors included Tidewater Community College, Hearndon Construction, Norfolk State University, Hassell and Folkes, PC. The Dragas Companies, Channing Pfeiffer/TBA, Dr. Darnell Johnson, Dr. William E. Ward, and Domingo Gonzalez, CLTC.