Roger Ebert, 70, Chicago Sun-Times Movie Critic

iera Beach ministry that helps homeless now needs help itself
Story by Lynn Gordon/CBS 12 News
RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — A local outreach ministry that helps the hungry and the homeless, now needs help itself from the community

Marie Antoinette Jean Pierre started the Valley of Love ministries in Riviera Beach in 2004, they recently moved to a new location on Broadway last year, but getting by isn’t easy.

“This ministry right here we run with no money at all its only god that help us here.”

Willie Wright is celebrating is celebrating his 48th birthday inside the ministry in trying to find medical care.

“I get depressed I try not to but sometimes i cant help it.”

Jean Pierre says they run the ministry right with no money at all.

“It’s only god that help us here.”

Despite that, Jean Pierre is determined to get Willie who is HIV positive the help he needs. As she’s done numerous times before, she called paramedics Thursday to take Willie to the hospital but that only takes him off the streets temporarily.

The ministry also provides food and clothing  for homeless people, children and adults, but there’s only only so much they can do without more resources.

A pedestrian was killed on Interstate 95 in Riviera Beach on Thursday.
•    Cuban dancers seek political asylum in…
•    Suspect accused of shoving woman, 79,…
•    1 killed in rollover crash in West Palm…
•    Man chases, tackles purse-snatching…
•    Man arrested after leaving 2 dogs to…
√NY KENNEY. I’M TODD MCDERMOTT. A TERRIFYING SCENE FOR DRIVERS ON I-95: A WOMAN DIES AFTER SHE’S HIT BY A VAN… AND POLICE SAY IT WAS UNAVOIDABLE. CHRIS EMMA IS LIVE NEAR THE SCENE IN RIVIERA BEACH… CHRIS We are standing along the northbound lanes of i95 just south of the blue heron blvd exit. Just behind me was site of a gruesome scene for commuters early this afternoon. Take Vo:At around 1:25 this afternoon Florida highway patrol received a call that a woman had been hit by a car on i95. Police say that an African American woman in her late 20’s ran out into oncoming traffic. They say she ran from the right lane side…avoided the first 2 cars but then was hit and killed by a van driving in the middle lane. Witnesses say that hitting her could not have been avoided. The identity of the victim is still unknown but we do know that the woman had a west palm beach address on her license. Investigators also have not said why the woman was on the side of the highway or why she ran into traffic.Tag:I was able to speak with the driver of the van that hit the woman. He did not want to go on camera and he was pretty shaken up but he did describe for me what happened. He said he was in the middle lane going 60 miles an hour and he never saw her. He said she just popped out of nowhere. No word yet on anything charges.

Read more:

Florida Highway Patrol Lt. Tim Frith said a West Palm Beach woman, later identified as Loody Faustin, 27, walked into oncoming traffic in the northbound lanes of I-95 near the Blue Heron Boulevard exit and was struck by a van.
Witnesses said there was no way the driver could avoid hitting her.
The driver told WPBF 25 News that he was traveling about 60 mph when she just came out of nowhere.
Investigators haven’t said why the woman was on the side of the highway or why she darted into traffic.
Faustin was pronounced dead at the scene. The body could be seen covered by a white sheet.








By Neil Steinberg

Roger Ebert loved movies.

Except for those he hated.

For a film with a daring director, a talented cast, a captivating plot or, ideally, all three, there could be no better advocate than Roger Ebert, who passionately celebrated and promoted excellence in film while deflating the awful, the derivative or the merely mediocre with an observant eye, a sharp wit and a depth of knowledge that delighted his millions of readers and viewers.

“No good film is too long,” he once wrote, a sentiment he felt strongly enough about to have engraved on pens. “No bad movie is short enough.”

Ebert, 70, who reviewed movies for the Chicago Sun-Times for 46 years and on TV for 31 years, and who was without question the nation’s most prominent and influential film critic, died Thursday in Chicago.

“We were getting ready to go home today for hospice care, when he looked at us, smiled, and passed away,” said his wife, Chaz Ebert. “No struggle, no pain, just a quiet, dignified transition.”

He had been in poor health over the past decade, battling cancers of the thyroid and salivary gland.

He lost part of his lower jaw in 2006, and with it the ability to speak or eat, a calamity that would have driven other men from the public eye. But Ebert refused to hide, instead forging what became a new chapter in his career, an extraordinary chronicle of his devastating illness that won him a new generation of admirers. “No point in denying it,” he wrote, analyzing his medical struggles with characteristic courage, candor and wit, a view that was never tinged with bitterness or self-pity.

On Tuesday, Ebert blogged that he had suffered a recurrence of cancer following a hip fracture suffered in December and would be taking “a leave of presence.” In the blog essay, marking his 46th anniversary of becoming the Sun-Times film critic, Ebert wrote “I am not going away. My intent is to continue to write selected reviews but to leave the rest to a talented team of writers hand-picked and greatly admired by me.”

Always technically savvy — he was an early investor in Google — Ebert let the Internet be his voice. His site,, had millions of fans, and he received a special achievement award as the 2010 “Person of the Year” from the Webby Awards, which noted that “his online journal has raised the bar for the level of poignancy, thoughtfulness and critique one can achieve on the Web.” His Twitter feed had more than 841,000 followers.

Ebert was both widely popular and professionally respected. He not only won a Pulitzer Prize — the first film critic to do so — but his name was added to the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005, among the movie stars he wrote about so well for so long. His reviews were syndicated in hundreds of newspapers worldwide.

The same year Ebert won the Pulitzer — 1975 — he also launched a new kind of television program: “Opening Soon at a Theater Near You” with Chicago Tribune movie critic Gene Siskel on WTTW-Channel 11. At first it ran monthly.

The combination worked. The trim, balding Siskel perfectly balanced the bespectacled, portly Ebert. In 1978, the show, retitled “Sneak Previews,” moved to PBS for national distribution, and the duo was on its way to becoming a fixture in American culture.

“Tall and thin, short and fat. Laurel and Hardy,” Ebert once wrote. “We were parodied on ‘SNL’ and by Bob Hope and Danny Thomas and, the ultimate honor, in the pages of Mad magazine.”

His colleagues admired him as a workhorse. Ebert reviewed as many as 306 movies a year, after he grew ill scheduling his cancer surgeries around the release of important pictures. He eagerly contributed to other sections of the paper — interviews with and obituaries of movie stars, even political columns on issues he cared strongly about on the editorial pages.

In 1997, dissatisfied with spending his critical powers “locked in the present,” he began a running a feature revisiting classic movies and eventually published three books on “The Great Movies” (and two books on movies he hated). A second column, his “Movie Answer Man,” allowed readers to learn about intriguing details of cinema that only a Roger Ebert knew or could ferret out.

That, too, became a book. Ebert wrote more books than any TV personality since Steve Allen — 17 in all. Not only collections of reviews, both good and bad, and critiques of great movies, but humorous glossaries and even a novel, “Behind the Phantom’s Mask,” that was serialized in the Sun-Times. He even wrote a book about rice cookers, “The Pot and How to Use It,” despite the fact that he could no longer eat. In 2011, his autobiography, “Life Itself,” won rave reviews. “This is the best thing Mr. Ebert has ever written,” Janet Maslin wrote in the New York Times. It is, fittingly enough, being made into a documentary, produced by his longtime friend, Martin Scor­sese.

Roger Joseph Ebert was born in Urbana on June 18, 1942, the son of Walter and Annabel Ebert. His father was an electrician at the University of Illinois, his mother, a bookkeeper. It was a liberal household — Ebert remembers his parents praying for the success of Harry Truman in the election of 1948. As a child, he published a mimeographed neighborhood newspaper and a stamp collectors’ newspaper in elementary school.

In high school, he was, as he later wrote, “demented in [his] zeal for school activities,” joining the swim team, acting in plays, founding the Science Fiction Club, co-hosting Urbana High School’s Saturday morning radio program, co-editing the newspaper, being elected senior class president.

He began his professional writing career at 15, as a sportswriter covering the high school beat for the News-Gazette in Champaign-Urbana.

Ebert went on to the University of Illinois, where he published a weekly journal of politics and opinion as a freshman and served as editor of the Daily Illini his senior year. He graduated in 1964 and studied in South Africa on a Rotary Scholarship.

While still in Urbana, he began free-lancing for the Sun-Times and the Chicago Daily News.

He was accepted at the University of Chicago, where he planned to earn his doctorate in English (an avid reader, Ebert later used literary authors to help explain films — for example, quoting e.e. cummings several times in his review of Stanley Kubrick’s groundbreaking “2001: A Space Odyssey.”)

But Ebert also had written to Herman Kogan, for whom he free-lanced at the Daily News, asking for a job, and ended up at the Sun-Times in September 1966, working part time. The following April, he was asked to become the newspaper’s film critic when the previous critic, Eleanor Keen, retired.

“I didn’t know the job was open until the day I was given it,” Ebert later said. “I had no idea. Bob Zonka, the features editor, called me into the conference room and said, ‘We’re gonna make you the movie critic.’ It fell out of the sky.”

Ebert’s goal up to that point had been to be “a columnist like Royko,” but he accepted this new stroke of luck, which came at exactly the right time. Movie criticism had been a backwater of journalism, barely more than recounting the plots and stars of movies — the Tribune ran its reviews under a jokey generic byline, “Mae Tinee.” But American cinema was about to enter a period of unprecedented creativity, and criticism would follow along. Restrictive film standards were finally easing up, in part thanks to his efforts. When Ebert began reviewing movies, Chicago still had an official film board that often banned daring movies here — Lynn Redgrave’s “Georgy Girl” was kept off Chicago screens in 1966 — and Ebert immediately began lobbying for elimination of the censorship board.

He had a good eye. His Sept. 25, 1967, review of Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway in “Bonnie and Clyde” called the movie “a milestone” and “a landmark.”

“Years from now it is quite possible that ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ will be seen as the definitive film of the 1960s,” he wrote, “showing with sadness, humor and unforgiving detail what one society had come to.”

It was. Though of course Ebert was not infallible — while giving Mike Nichols’ “The Graduate” four stars in the same year, he added that the movie’s “only flaw, I believe, is the introduction of limp, wordy Simon and Garfunkel songs.’’

Ebert plunged into what turned out to be a mini-golden age of Chicago journalism. He found himself befriended by Mike Royko — with whom he wrote an unproduced screenplay. He drank with Royko, and with Nelson Algren and Studs Terkel. He wrote a trashy Hollywood movie, “Beyond the Valley of the Dolls,’’ for Russ Meyer, having met the king of the buxom B-movie after writing an appreciation of his work.

In later years, Ebert was alternately sheepish and proud of the movie. It was the first “sexploitation” film by a major studio, 20th Century Fox, though Time magazine’s Richard Corliss did call it one of the 10 best films of the 1970s.

It was not Ebert’s only foray into film writing — he was also hired to write a movie for the Sex Pistols, the seminal British punk band in the late 1970s.

Eventually, Sun-Times editor James Hoge demanded that Ebert — who took a leave of absence when he went to Hollywood to write “Beyond the Valley of the Dolls” — decide between making films and reviewing them. He chose newspapering, which increasingly became known because of his TV fame, which grew around his complex partnership with Gene Siskel on “Sneak Previews.”

“At first the relationship on TV was edgy and uncomfortable,” Ebert wrote in 1999, after Siskel’s untimely death, at 53. “Our newspaper rivalry was always in the air between us. Gene liked to tell about the time he was taking a nap under a conference table at the television station, overheard a telephone conversation I was having with an editor, and scooped me on the story.”

In 1981, the program was renamed “At the Movies” and moved to Tribune Broadcasting. In 1986, it became “Siskel & Ebert & The Movies” and moved to Buena Vista Television, and the duo began the signature “thumbs up, thumbs down” rating system that Ebert invented.

“When we left to go with Disney . . . we had to change some things because we were afraid of [violating] intellectual property rights,’’ he said. “And I came up with the idea of giving thumbs up and thumbs down. And the reason that Siskel and I were able to trademark that is that the phrase ‘two thumbs up’ in connection with movies had never been used. And in fact, the phrase ‘two thumbs up’ was not in the vernacular. And now, of course, it’s part of the language.”

“Two thumbs up” became their registered trademark and a highly coveted endorsement that inevitably ran at the top of movie advertisements.

After Siskel died in 1999, Ebert auditioned a number of temporary co-hosts and settled on Sun-Times colleague Richard Roeper in 2000. At its height, “Ebert & Roeper,” was seen on 200 stations.

“Everyone keeps asking me for my favorite Roger Ebert story, or the one thing about him most people might not have known. Here’s the thing: Roger Ebert has already told all the best Roger Ebert stories in far better fashion than I ever could,” said Roeper, who continued the show after health troubles forced Ebert from the airwaves in 2006, until both men quit in 2008 after a contract dispute.

“And whether you ‘knew’ him only through his reviews or his Twitter feed or his blog, or you were lucky enough to have been his friend for many years, with Roger, what you saw and heard was the 100 percent, unvarnished, real deal,” Roeper said. “There was no ‘off camera’ Roger. He was just as passionate, smart, stubborn, genuine and funny behind the scenes as he was in the public eye. He was a great writer and an even better friend.

“They can remake movies, but no one will ever be able to recreate or match the one and only Roger Ebert.”

All that need be mentioned of Ebert’s social life was that in the early 1980s he briefly went out with the hostess of a modest local TV show called “AM Chicago.” Taking her to the Hamburger Hamlet for dinner, Ebert suggested that she syndicate her show, using his success with Siskel as an example of the kind of riches that awaited. While she didn’t return his romantic interest, Oprah Winfrey did follow his business advice.

In his memoir, Ebert writes of a controlling, alcoholic, faith-obsessed mother whom he was frightened of displeasing. “I would never marry before my mother died,” he wrote. She died in 1987, and in 1992 he got married, for the first time, at age 50, to attorney Chaz Hammel-Smith (later Chaz Hammelsmith), who was the great romance of his life and his rock in sickness, instrumental in helping Ebert continue his workload as his health declined.

“She fills my horizon, she is the great fact of my life, she is the love of my life, she saved me from the fate of living out my life alone,” he wrote.

In addition to his TV and newspaper work, Ebert was a fixture at film festivals around the world — Toronto, Cannes, Telluride — and even created a festival of his own, The Overlooked Film Festival, or just “Ebertfest,” which he began in Champaign in 1999 and dedicated to highlighting neglected classics.

Between 1970 and 2010, Ebert made yearly visits to the University of Colorado’s springtime Conference on World Affairs, where he has presented frame-by-frame critiques of classic movies to enraptured audiences.

He had also used the conference to speak on a variety of subjects, from his romantic life to his recovery from alcoholism — he stopped drinking in 1979 — to the problem of spam email. In 1996, Ebert coined the “Boulder Pledge,” considered a cornerstone in the battle against spam.

“Under no circumstances will I ever purchase anything offered to me as the result of an unsolicited e-mail message,” Ebert wrote. “Nor will I forward chain letters, petitions, mass mailings, or virus warnings to large numbers of others. This is my contribution to the survival of the online community.”

Not only was Ebert eager to correspond with and encourage skilled movie bloggers, but he also put his money where his mouth was, investing early in the Google search engine and making several million dollars doing so.

Ebert received honorary degrees from the American Film Institute, the University of Colorado and the School of the Art Institute. He is a member of the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame and was honored with a sidewalk medallion under the Chicago Theatre marquee.

He first had surgery to remove a malignant tumor on his thyroid in 2002, and three subsequent surgeries on his salivary gland, all the while refusing to cut back on his TV show or his lifelong pride and joy, his job at the Sun-Times.

“My newspaper job,” he said in 2005, “is my identity.”

But as always with Roger Ebert, that was being too modest. He was a renaissance man whose genius was based on film but by no means limited to it, a great soul who had extraordinary impact on his profession and the world around him.

“Kindness covers all of my political beliefs,” he wrote, at the end of his memoir, “Life Itself.” “No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.”

Survivors, in addition to his wife, include stepchildren Sonia and Jay, and grandchildren Raven, Emil, Mark and Joseph.




Officials are taking precautions by doing a thorough cleaning of the school today, they cancelled the character parade and a Halloween party has been postponed till Monday.

Additionally, food services are suspended today and students have been asked to bring their own lunches from home.

Franklin Academy Charter School: Health officials investigate mysterious outbreak at charter school

Read more:

BOYNTON BEACH – Franklin Academy Charter School will be closed Friday as Palm Beach County Health officials try to determine what led to an outbreak, which resulted in 30 students being sent home on Wednesday.

“We have taken samples but we are also accumulating on that list all of the students names and contact the parents and see if we can tie things together,” Health Department spokesman Tim O’Connor said.

The students were sent home after complaints of diarrhea and vomiting.
“All we know is that it is gastro-intestinal and created problems,” O’Connor said. “We have to look for dehydration factor, clean up.”


A school nurse alerted the Health Department about the illnesses.

Thursday’s character parade and holiday parties were postponed until Monday.

School officials said they would make up the missing class day on March 24, 2014.



The school sent an email which said it was encouraged by the fact that no new illnesses were reported on campus. However, it conceded enrollment was smaller than usual.

Many parents commenting on the PTO Facebook page said that they were keeping their children home today as a precaution. Several said that their children’s symptoms included vomiting.

According to the school’s email, classes will be canceled Friday to make sure the building is thoroughly cleaned and sanitized.

In addition to the Boynton Beach campus, Franklin Academy has campuses in Palm Beach Gardens, Pembroke Pines and Cooper City.

Read more:






by Scott T. Smith / CBS12 News
They were outside during recess this morning.

However, after more than two dozen students went home sick this week with flu-like symptoms.

At this point, no one’s exactly sure what’s caused the sickness, bit they’re trying to figure that out.

Again, we are waiting for a statement from the school soon.Mystery illness sickens kids at Boynton Beach charter school; classes canceled




Delray Beach considers opening beaches up to pooches

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — Some Delray Beach dog owners are tired of traveling north to Jupiter or south to Fort Lauderdale to let their pooches run on the sand.

And they have let the City Commission know that.

At a recent commission meeting, resident Mary Yuhas spoke on behalf of dog lovers.

“Today dogs are a part of the family,” Yuhas said.

She said residents and tourists alike bring their dogs to shop and dine along Atlantic Avenue, and they should be able to do the same just a few blocks east at the beach.

Currently, the city has an ordinance which bans people from bringing animals onto the beach. Animals are permitted on the sidewalks and grassy areas leading up to the beach if they are on a leash. And owners must pick up after their animals or be hit with a fine.

Some residents don’t see why the rule can’t be amended to allow canines to stroll on the sand.

And this isn’t the first effort residents have made to change the rule book.

In 2007, residents petitioned to change the law, but they were rebuffed. They may have hit the buried treasure this time, though.

Mayor Cary Glickstein says the idea is worth looking at.

“A big part of our population has pets,” he said at a recent meeting, adding he has noticed people bringing their dogs to the beach early in the morning. “Our beaches are being used as dog beaches unofficially.”

He said he has received a lot of emails about the topic and didn’t know whether it was because Delray’s ‘season’ is starting or because Delray’s neighbor to the south, Boca Raton, recently announced plans to allow dogs on its beach.

Regardless, he said he would do some research.

As soon as the issue was brought up, residents with and without dogs took to social media to post their views.

And while most were supportive of the idea, some suggested conditions.

The consensus seems to be that dogs should be allowed on a portion of Delray’s beach on certain days at certain times.

“As a passionate dog lover, I think the right solution is a dog friendly portion of the beach,” Craig Oneil posted to Facebook.

Gregg Weiss, the Delray Chamber of Commerce’s vice chair for economic development, compared opening part of the beach to dogs to allowing dogs in a section of Lake Ida Park.

“We did it in Lake Ida Park without issue, and we can do it on the beach without issue,” Weiss posted. “The beach is pretty big. It’s not a stretch of the imagination to open up a small corner of the sandy paradise to people and their pups. ‘Say Yup to the Pup.'”Delray Beach considers opening beaches up to pooches



Lea Lehndorf and Shane Kennedy as the new faces of the annual Pink Walk. Photo / File

// The annual “pink walk” has become part of Tauranga’s calendar over the past decade, turning The Strand bright pink each October as thousands of women walk to raise money for Tauranga Breast Cancer Support Service.

It is uplifting to see the masses decked out in wigs, face paint and fun costumes.

Yesterday Kiri Gillespie reported that for the 11th walk, men can join in. Great news, yet it surprised me men had been excluded before. As many local families are aware, cancer has no favourites when it comes to age, gender or class.

Breast cancer’s pink branding has been a global marketing phenomenon. Although the local breast cancer society has no affiliation with the well resourced New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation, the pink walk has been able to harness the pink theme and give it legs – literally. It is a fantastic fundraiser for the many Tauranga women affected by breast cancer who can connect with a local service.

It is more than a fundraiser. It is a day when the community connects – old and young, sick and well, survivors, and friends of those who didn’t make it.

// There are many other cancers whose sufferers may fall under the radar, whose cancer doesn’t have a colour, or a day or month to raise awareness and funding, or something that links them to the community.

This had never occurred to me before, until earlier this year when I took a phone call from Tauranga biker Grant Wilson. A cancer survivor of body and face tumours, he had tried to join Tauranga’s Relay for Life event and was turned away because he didn’t have a gold coin donation.

The story had a good ending when the Lions Club took Mr Wilson under its wing for a future event. I remember something Mr Wilson said to me on that phone call, that if you are suffering – or know someone suffering – from a terrible illness like cancer, you may want to reach out, but not know how.

What I admire about the Breast Cancer Pink Walk is its huge sense of camaraderie. Allowing men to join in is a move in opening this inspiring event up to the wider community. Let’s hope it encourages even more people to take part, particularly those who may need help, but we just don’t know about them.
We salute Carvalho and Rays of Hope organizers for the work they’ve done as they celebrate the 20-year milestone. With efforts like the Rays of Hope walk, steps toward a cure for breast cancer can only get closer.


Delta airlines had , napkins with “Tropicana pink lemonade supports breast cancer”








Four Palm Beach Schools’ Students Win The Steward Of America Essay Awards

By Bito David

Four Palm Beach Schools’ Students Win The Steward Of America Essay Awards: the first place in the middle school category and the first, second, and third places in the high school category.

The goal of the essay contest was to promote the mission of Stewards of America, LLC, which is to conserve natural environments for the next generation by inspiring the future Stewards of America.

The prompt for middle school essay was:  What does the word stewardship mean to you and how can fostering a new generation of stewards change our world for the better?

Sarah Palumbo (8th Grader at Eagles Landing Middle School last year) won the first place award. In her essay she stated: “Stewardship means the observation, management, and care given to something by a steward; specifically those critical natural gifts that are found in the environment that we want to protect for future generations.”

The prompt for the high school essay was:  Aldo Leopold said, “When land does well for its owner, and the owner does well by his land – when both end up better by reason of their partnership – then we have conservation.”  How does this concept show the personal and social responsibility we have to conserve land for future generations?

Jhanelle Bisasor (12th Grader at Suncoast Community High School) won the first place award. She stated in her essay: “As humans, the responsibility to conserve resources is particularly poignant, especially considering the poor effort that we are currently putting forth.  It is the prime objective of all species to survive and provide for the survival of future generations.  We as a species receive our every need from Earth.  Without nature, our needs could not be met, and our survival would be impossible.  In order for our species to survive and flourish, it is crucial that we conserve resources for sustainable use by future generations.”

Laurie Laborde and Stephanie Maravankin, from Wellington High School, respectively won second and third place in the high school category.

First and Second place winners were awarded with a sterling silver stewardship ring of their choice.  Third place winners received an Environmental T-shirt.  All winners received a certificate.

Visit for more information.


8-12offereds buy 0ut 12


— Only nine Palm Beach Post employees over 55 years of age agreed to take a buyout by Friday’s deadline, and the stage is now set at the shrinking newspaper for another round of forced layoffs.


Gone but not to be forgotten: Editorial Page Editor Randy Schultz



Among the high profile newsroom dwellers leaving, a well-placed source tells me, is Editorial Page Editor Randy Schultz, whose far left musings angered local Republicans enough to cause a massive exodus of conservative readers to the web!

Schultz arrived at the paper in 1976, according to his online bio, and he held a half-dozen jobs before taking over the editorial page in 1990.

In 2011, Gossip Extra obtained emails between Schultz and the then-Palm Beach County State Attorney Michael McAuliffe in which Schultz seemingly coached McAuliffe in responding to negative press from the Post‘s court reporters.

While the deadline for employees to agree to their two-weeks-severance-per-year-of-service package was 5 p.m. Friday, Gossip Extra hears, Schultz asked to be allowed to think it through during the weekend.

Schultz told Publisher Tim Burke today that he’s taking the package.

Jac Wilder VerSteeg, another editorial page writer and a 26-year veteran of local political coverage, agreed to the buyout as did book and classical music reviewer Scott Eyman, a writer who specializes in the golden age of cinema. Longtime outdoors and political reporter Willie Howard also accepted.

Word in the newsroom is that the Post‘s Atlanta-based management hoped for 35 voluntary departures.

Now, management is left to picking who’s going and who’s staying.

Neither Schultz nor Burke replied to a request for comments.

Already on life support, The Palm Beach Post is going through another round of layoffs.

This time, the newspaper’s Atlanta-based management is looking for 15 to 20 “volunteers” over 55 years of age to take a buyout that includes two weeks of salary per year of service, Gossip Extra hears.


Palm Beach Post Publisher Tim Burke (via Twitter)

If the number of volunteers doesn’t help the bottom line, the Post is likely to fire those who didn’t step up and send them on their way with one week’s pay per year worked.

When this round is completed, the Post will have shed more than two third of its workers in five years!

Employee Speaks Out

For once, the details about the bad news at the Cox Media Group outfit don’t come from Gossip Extra but from a newsroom employee who received the dreaded letter announcing that she should quit, long-time court reporter Jane Musgrave.

Her layoff story was just published on the Society of Professional Journalists‘ website.

The results of the voluntary buyouts are expected by early November, Musgrave writes.

She chose to drop a dime on management way before then — before she is ordered to sign a confidentiality agreement so that she can get her money.

Can bizarre idea bar save The Post?

Musgrave unfortunately turned 57, and she might be the newsroom’s most experienced employee.

Experience? Who cares?

But experience, she laments, no longer matters.

In her story, she takes a few shots at those who’ve been presiding over one of media history’s most spectacular falls, 50-something types like ghost publisher Tim Burke whose jobs are safe.

She also dared question the legality and morality of targeting folks over 55 because, presumably, they make more money.

So far, Musgrave is the only active Palm Beach Post worker who’s taken on management publicly.

Click here for her story!


cut photo department in half

Posted by Thomas Wheatley @thomaswheatley on Fri, Oct 11, 2013 at 4:13 PM


Roughly three weeks ago, Atlanta Journal-Constitution staffers were told by Editor Kevin Riley that layoffs in the newsroom of the metro region’s paper of record were possible. The upcoming budget was expected to be tight. Now they know that cuts are indeed happening.

Yesterday at the news outlet’s Dunwoody headquarters, Riley gave staffers the tally. The photo department staffed by award-winning journalists would be reduced from 11 people to six, which includes one photo editor. (Two other Cox-owned newspapers are offering voluntary buyouts to photographers.)

In addition, two “news technologists” who, among other things, make sure that journalists’ laptops function and Air Cards can transmit stories, will also be cut. The four-member customer-care team that screened some readers’ calls and helped handle the complaints of print subscribers who missed their morning paper will also be eliminated. An editor who oversaw the county-by-county news page will also be cut.

“We care about those people,” he said. “They made important contributions.”

The news comes at a tough time, especially after the paper has, from what we’ve heard, met its targets and produced several high-profile investigative pieces. In addition, these are probably the most high-profile cuts Riley’s had to make since moving to Atlanta three years ago from a Cox sister paper in Ohio. The news he delivered yesterday, according to one source, looked to take a toll on him. But his approach and transparency about the AJC‘s operations and inner workings, our sources say, helped blunt some of the frustration and win respect.

In a phone interview this afternoon with CL, Riley said that the decisions about which jobs to eliminate were “guided by the newspaper’s core journalistic mission and consistent with where we need to go with our long-term strategy.”

“We’re about reporting the news,” said Riley. “Reporting the deeper story, investigative journalism, telling deeper stories.”

The cuts are scheduled to take effect in late December. The rationale behind the decision to announce the layoffs now rather than later was to allow affected employees time to apply for other jobs at the AJC, send off resumes to other Cox-owned companies, or make other personal decisions.

In some cases, the new work created by the cuts could be spread around to other departments. For example, calls to customer care could be re-routed to the circulation department. Or the news technologists’ duties could be picked up by the company’s IT department.

It’s the five-person cut to the photo department, a vital part of journalism that has faced increasing scrutiny in newsroom budgeting decisions, that was most surprising. Though not as drastic as the steps that other newspapers have made – the Chicago Sun-Times cut its entire photography department earlier this year – it’s still a blow to a paper that covers a metro region inhabited by more than 5 million people. Photographers would have to re-apply for the five positions, which will require them to shoot still photography, produce digital work, and record video. The department’s freelance budget will increase, but the logistics of making sure the AJC can document various sports events on one night while also being able to cover breaking news could be difficult.

Riley, who said he’s optimistic about the AJC, noted that the paper did not cut any reporting staff – it’s actually been making additions on the news gathering side, most recently with the hiring of Pulitzer Prize winner (and former AJC-er) Brad Schrade and Rose French, who are married.

“That is consistent with where we need to go,” he said. “More and more we need to be focused on the core and important things we do. If we need to have a smaller staff, the cuts need to come from areas that are not crucial to our readers.”

Spared from any job cuts, however, were managers and higher-ups, something we’re told one staffer inquired about during yesterday’s powwow with Riley. The editor told us today that, considering the budgeting schedule, it was important in the short-term to focus on areas of the newsroom that weren’t crucial to the paper’s mission. But he said that, over the next year, it will continue to “examine whether we have the right number of people in management and leadership. We expect to do a lot of that over the next year.”

“As we build a 21st century newsroom we will recognize that it requires a different kind of and style of leadership,” he said. “We are working on that now. I’m optimistic about where we’re going and how it will turn out.”

Police ask for Help in Finding Teen who Walked Away From Hospital

BOCA RATON – Police are asking for help in finding a 16-year-old who left a local hospital this week.

Clint Lobig left the Boca Raton Regional Hospital around 8 a.m. wearing a hospital gown.

He was at the hospital to be examined after taking drugs Monday night. Police said Clint has made suicidal statements in the past.

Clint is about 6-foot-2, weighs about 230 pounds and has brown hair and blue eyes. He has a “Peggy” tattoo on his right wrist and “561” on his left hand.

Anyone with information is asked to call the nearest police agency.


lice: Boca brothers beat Miami man with fists, beer bottle after he brushed by in bar



A possibly unintentional brush in the Whistle Stop bar landed one man in the hospital and two brothers in jail facing charges for the beating police say they gave him.

Kevin Earle, 36, of Boca Raton faces a charge of felony battery. His brother Christopher Earle, 25, also of Boca Raton, faces charges of aggravated battery. Police contend Kevin hit John McCleary, 23, of Miami with his fist, and Christopher followed up using a beer bottle as a weapon in his attack.

Boca Raton police were called to the bar at 198 W. Camino Real just before midnight Wednesday, according to Christopher Earle’s arrest report.

The first officer to the scene found McCleary sitting on the sidewalk outside nursing his bloody face with a paper towel.

Both brothers were too intoxicated to answer the officer’s questions, Officer Seth Dubinsky wrote in Christopher Earle’s arrest report. Many people inside who witnessed the fight were also too drunk to give details, so Dubinsky reviewed the bar’s video.

He concluded that the fight began after McCleary brushed against Kevin Earle in passing, perhaps doing it unintentionally, Dubinsky wrote.

McCleary was taken to Boca Raton Regional Hospital. Authorities there told police the cuts to his face were severe and would require a plastic surgeon.



Suspected vehicle burglar caught with stolen goods in underwear

A suspected vehicle burglar didn’t do the best job of hiding some of his contraband on Monday.

It was through Antwan Mayes, open pants zipper that police spotted a slew of stolen cards including a driver’s license and credit cards, according to a Boca Raton Police Department arrest report.

“Through Mayes’ open zipper, I could see them sticking out of the front slit of his underwear,” an officer wrote in the report.

An officer watching the L.A. Fitness parking lot after two nearby vehicle burglaries spotted the 27-year-old Fort Lauderdale man driving a white SUV and stepping out to look into vehicles, according to the report.

Police later pulled Mayes over and found marijuana, a light fixture stolen from a car at another gym, several smartphones, jewelry, foreign money along with mail from a Coral Springs burglary in the SUV.

Mayes charges include burglary, larceny and drug possession. He was booked into Palm Beach County Jail where he is being held in lieu of $37,000 bail.

State Road 7 bridges west of Boca Raton to be replaced


State Road 7 bridges west of Boca Raton to be replaced


By Angel Streeter, Sun Sentinel  

A couple of bridges that connect to State Road 7 west of Boca Raton soon will be getting makeovers.

Palm Beach County plans to replace the Sandalfoot Boulevard bridge and the Southwest Third Street bridge. Both cross a Lake Worth Drainage District canal just east of State Road 7.

“Both bridges are pretty old,” said Morton Rose, the county’s assistant director of roadway production. “They’re getting to the point that they’re so old they’re obsolete.”

The current Sandalfoot bridge is actually two separate structures. One carries two lanes of eastbound traffic while the other carries two lanes of westbound traffic.

The county wants to replace those two structures with one big bridge to handle all of the Sandalfoot traffic. The five-lane replacement bridge with wider sidewalks will have two eastbound lanes and three westbound lanes for traffic turning left, right or going straight.

Some 4,800 vehicles a day travel on the Sandalfoot bridge. In addition to a busy shopping center, Sandalfoot Boulevard also serves the Boca Dunes Golf and Country Club.

Built in 1969, the bridge is considered “functionally obsolete” by the Florida Department of Transportation. It doesn’t meet current standards.

The Third Street bridge also has an obsolete designation. Its replacement is expected to be wider, going from two lanes to three lanes with one lane for eastbound traffic and two lanes for westbound traffic. The additional westbound lane will be for left turns.

Built in 1972, some 4,500 vehicles a day travel on it, providing access from State Road 7 to nearby shopping centers and homes.

The bridges are just entering the design phase. Construction on the replacement bridges is expected to begin in a year with the Sandalfoot bridge costing $1.2 million and the Third Street bridge costing $1.4 million.


Mother speaks out on daughter’s killing

By Brittany Shammas, Sun Sentinel

Two days before her death, Gemma Burlakoff told her dad everything was fine.

She and her husband, Ian Burlakoff, fought often and were taking steps toward divorce, but on Friday, life was good, said her father, Frank Villareale, 70. Then on Sunday, the couple went to dinner at a Boca Raton country club and got into an argument.

By the end of the night, both were dead. Authorities say Ian Burlakoff, 41, shot his 37-year-old wife around 6 p.m. near 500 South Ocean Boulevard, then died after a responding officer fired shots at him when he reached for a handgun.

“I don’t know what happened,” Villareale said on Monday. “Nobody knows what happened.”

The two shootings have been turned over to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating both. The incident shocked residents of the upscale community, which rarely sees much crime.

Court records show Ian and Gemma Burlakoff were married in 2005, and began seeking a divorce in June. Ian Burlakoff was a general manager at King Hyundai in Deerfield Beach and had been in the automotive industry for 23 years, according to his profile on the dealership’s website. His wife studied occupational therapy at Florida State University, her father said.

Villareale described her as friendly and personable, but said the couple often fought over his “gambling habit,” Villareale said.

No one from Ian Burlakoff’s family could be reached for comment despite phone calls.

Between the two of them, they had four children ranging from 15 months to 12 years. They lived in a sprawling, nearly $2 million home in suburban Boca Raton, but were losing it, Villareale said.

Records show they owed between $1.4 million and $1.8 million on the house, which was set to be sold at auction on March 25 if it wasn’t paid off.

In June, Ian Burlakoff filed for divorce, which was still pending.

Years earlier, he had sought a protective order against his wife, but chose to dismiss it in December 2005. Further details on that case were not available Monday.

After the couple began fighting on Sunday, Villareale said Gemma Burlakoff tried to escape to her mother’s condo at Chalfonte, an oceanfront highrise on Ocean Boulevard. But her husband followed her there and shot her at about 6 p.m. across the street from the building.

Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Teri Barbera said Boca Raton police officers who responded to the shooting encountered an armed Ian Burlakoff in the northbound shoulder of Ocean Boulevard. He ignored officers’ commands and reached for his handgun, and a Boca Raton police officer fired shots at him, she said.

Jim Lupfer, 62, said he was watching a football game with family when he heard the “pop, pop, pop” sound outside his house. He and his wife, children and grandchildren headed to the second floor of the house, not knowing what was happening.

“All we heard was shots,” Lupfer said. “And you assume the worst.”

Officers rushed past the side of the house. Lupfer said he looked out the window and saw a woman’s body on the ground. The street quickly filled with police cars and officers. They remained there for hours.

Police found Gemma Burlakoff’s body in bushes next to Lupfer’s house. Her husband died across the street.

“It’s very tragic that both are dead,” Villareale said, before saying he couldn’t talk anymore and getting off the phone.

Lupfer, who said his family was still shaken by the shootings Monday afternoon, echoed that comment.

“It’s just a tragedy that violence like this can happen,” he said.

Staff researcher Barbara Hijek contributed to this report., 561-243-6531 or Twitter @britsham


By Bito David

A Fun and Witty Retelling of Chekhovian Tales in Classic Simon Style

Sit back and enjoy the fast-paced retelling of Chekhovian tales in the classic Neil Simon comedy, The Good Doctor.  You’ll be whisked through a fun series of nine enlightening vignettes as the talented cast of Spanish River Theatre Arts artfully captures the essence of this comic tribute to the works of 19th century Russian dramatist Anton Chekhov. Filled with wit, comic fancy and some musical surprises, this Tony winning Broadway hit is sure to peak your interest with a clever balance of Chekhovian satire and classic Simon punch lines.

The Good Doctor presented the perfect template for our talented students,” said Kathleen Molinaro, Program Director of Spanish River High School’s Theatre Arts and Drama Department. “The diverse roles and challenging scenes have set the stage for a great show!”

Performances begin at 7:00 p.m. on November 1st and November 2nd, and at 2:00 p.m. for our Sunday matinee on November 3rd at the beautiful state-of-the-art Countess de Hoernle Theatre.  The theatre is located on Spanish River Community High School’s campus at 5100 Jog Road and Yamato Road in Boca Raton. Ticket prices are $15 and can be purchased online at There is free parking onsite and handicapped access is available.

For your enjoyment, refreshments will be available at our concession located in the lobby before the show and during intermission.

“Good Doctor, The (Neil Simon)” is presented by special arrangement with SAMUEL FRENCH, INC.

For more information, email Elena Canadeo Doxey at or call 561-271-4767.


Posted by Bito David on

Special Needs Students Share Their Experiences With Other Students

Where:            Waters Edge Elementary School, 21601 Shorewind Dr.

                        Boca Raton, FL 33428

When:             Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Time:              7:45 am – 12:00 pm


Waters Edge, a fully included elementary school, has invited eight young people to come to their school to share their experiences and learn about people with disabilities.

Christine was diagnosed with ADHD when she was 7.

I wish my friends would have understood why I couldn’t sit still or concentrate.”  She remarked. Christine will be among a group of young people some former attendees of Palm Beach County schools. These student’s disabilities include Muscular Dystrophy, Cerebral Palsy, Down syndrome, Hearing Impaired, Tourette’s syndrome, and Autism Spectrum Disorder. These volunteers have come together in the hope that by exposing other students to the differences they have, the children will realize that they are more the same than different.

Palm Beach County schools have moved toward being a fully inclusive school district. Most children with disabilities are educated in the general education classroom and receive additional support when necessary. October is National Handicap awareness month.

For more information, contact Lisa DelPozzo at or call (561)852-2400.




Posted by Vickie Middlebrooks on

The Superintendent’s Graduation Increase and Suspension Reduction Task Force invites teachers, students, parents and community members to an informative discussion to understand the role of the School District’s Chief Academic Office presented by Cheryl Alligood, Chief Academic Officer.

The Chief Academic Officer ensures that quality academic programming and initiatives are offered to all students in a mission to increase academic achievement, graduation rates, and ensure students are college and career ready.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 22 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Where: Inlet Grove Community High School – 600 West 28th Street, Riviera Beach

The purpose of the Superintendent’s Graduation Increase and Suspension Reduction Task Force is to collaboratively work with key stakeholders to prioritize the needs of students and increase graduation rates across the county.

“Our expectation is that this event will unite students, parents, and community members with the School District as well as drive excitement, cohesiveness and a mission of educational excellence throughout the county for all students, especially African American males,” said Willie Williams, Task Force Communications Co-Chairman.

For more information contact Willie O. Williams, Jr. at 561-357-7663 or via


Posted by Vickie Middlebrooks on

Don Estridge High Tech Middle School is planning to have a Pond Cleanup at their Draco’s Preserve, an outdoor Environmental Classroom that students and faculty have been developing since the fall of 2008. The preserve is being developed by 6th grade science teacher, Bruce Rich and his students.


The 3.25-acre preserve includes a deep water pond, marshland, Florida scrubland and a hardwood hammock. On October 26, 2013, from 8:00 AM until 12:00 PM, “National Make a Difference Day”, students, teachers and supporters of our Draco’s Preserve are going to get together to clear trails, provide access points to the pond, develop a butterfly garden and clear over-grown weeds from the pond itself.

“What better way to make a difference,” suggests Mr. Rich, “than to help our kids rediscover the beauty and fascinating diversity of our natural environment? In partnership with the city of Boca Raton and with many community partners, we can show our children that it is possible to live in harmony with nature.”

For more information please contact Bruce Rich at .



Posted by Bito David on

Members of the Boca Raton Education Advisory Board and the Boca Raton Fire Department visited Addison Mizner Elementary to participate in “Read for the Record.” The book Otis by, Loren Long was read to eight kindergarten classes. Among the delegation were: Captain Craig Ashley, Inspector Joe Ildefonso, Senior Inspector Matt Welhaf, Scott Singer (Education Advisory Board member). Annmarie Giddings-Dilbert (Chair of the Education Advisory Board) Inspector Bob Lemons, Tom Gill (Education Advisory Board member), Driver/Engineer Thomas Giddings, Fire Fighter Alexandra Kennedy, and Inspector Jay Sumner.

This initiative is in line with the established School District Key Result to assure that all students of each racial/ethnic group will be proficient in reading as measured by FCAT Writes.

For more information about “Read for the Record”, visit:



In Times Like These
(Ruth Caye Jones – Mother Jones)

1. In times like these, you need a Savior
In times like these, you need an anchor
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock

This Rock is Jesus, Yes, He’s the one
This Rock is Jesus, The only One
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock

2.  In times like these you need the Bible
In times like these oh be not idle
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock

This Rock is Jesus, Yes, He’s the one
This Rock is Jesus, The only One
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock

In times like these, I have a Savior
In times like these, I have an anchor
I’m very sure, I’m very sure
My anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock

This Rock is Jesus, Yes, He’s the one
This Rock is Jesus, The only One
I’m very sure, I’m very sure
My anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock



Joys are flowing like a river,   /    Since the Comforter has come;
He abides with us forever,   /   Makes the trusting heart His home.


Blessed quietness, holy quietness,
What assurance in my soul!
On the stormy sea, He speaks peace to me,
How the billows cease to roll!

Bringing life and health and gladness,    All around this heav’nly Guest,
Banished unbelief and sadness,  /    Changed our weariness to rest.


Like the rain that falls from Heaven,
Like the sunlight from the sky,
So the Holy Ghost is given,
Coming on us from on high.


See, a fruitful field is growing,
Blessed fruit of righteousness;
And the streams of life are flowing
In the lonely wilderness.


What a wonderful salvation,
Where we always see His face!
What a perfect habitation,
What a quiet resting place!




Turn it over to Jesus, turn it over to Jesus
Turn it over to Jesus, and smile all the rest of the day.


Mary and Martha had a brother, the brother died and was buried,

They turned it over to Jesus, and smile all the rest of the day.


Three men charged in Delray double homicide




Three By Jason Schwartz

DELRAY BEACH –  A grand jury has indicted three men on charges related to a double homicide that occurred two days before Christmas in Delray Beach, police said.

The three homicide suspects – Travis LaMarcus Jackson, 25, who has no fixed address, Marcus Jamal Jerry, 21, of Palm Springs and Pasco Reynolds, 23, of West Palm Beach – were indicted for the murders of Alfonso Hunter, 68, and Reginald Taylor, 52 on Dec. 23 at a beauty supply-convenience store at 945 W. Atlantic Ave.

Jackson and Jerry were already in jail on unrelated charges and re-arrested on Thursday, Oct. xx. Police arrested Reynolds the following day with help from the U.S. Marshals Service Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force, police said.

“”The Delray Beach Police Department is pleased to be able to take these violent criminals off the street and give the families closure,” Delray Beach Police spokeswoman Nicole Guerriero said. “Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families who grieve the loss of their loved ones.”

The shooting happened after Taylor, 56, and Hunter, 68, walked into the Community Market xxxx for their morning routine of coffee and Lotto.

Police say two masked men walked into the market, robbed the clerks, shot the two men and took off.

At the market where Taylor and Hunter were shot, clerk Mahmoud Masoud said he was sitting behind the counter when the two robbers walked in just before 6 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 23. One of the gunmen shot the two victims without a word, Masoud said.

“They did not say nothing. The one guy just shoots them,” Masoud, 26, said a day after the shooting. “It was not like robberies you see on ‘Cops,’ like ‘Put your hands up.’ This was two innocent people.”

The robbery netted the suspects less than $100, a clerk at the market said.

“The Delray Beach Police Department is pleased to be able to take these violent criminals off the street and give the families closure,” said Delray Beach Police spokeswoman Nicole Guerriero. “Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families who grieve the loss of their loved ones.”

Jackson and Reynolds face first-degree murder, robbery and firearm charges while Jerry faces murder, attempted murder and robbery charges. All remain in Palm Beach County Jail.

  Police are calling the Dec. 23 shooting deaths of two “innocent men,” Reggie Taylor and Alfonso Hunter, “heinous and cowardly.”



ree By Jason Schwartz

DELRAY BEACH –  A grand jury has indicted three men on charges related to a double homicide that occurred two days before Christmas in Delray Beach, police said.

The three homicide suspects – Travis LaMarcus Jackson, 25, who has no fixed address, Marcus Jamal Jerry, 21, of Palm Springs and Pasco Reynolds, 23, of West Palm Beach – were indicted for the murders of Alfonso Hunter, 68, and Reginald Taylor, 52 on Dec. 23 at a beauty supply-convenience store at 945 W. Atlantic Ave.

Jackson and Jerry were already in jail on unrelated charges and re-arrested on Thursday, Oct. xx. Police arrested Reynolds the following day with help from the U.S. Marshals Service Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force, police said.

“”The Delray Beach Police Department is pleased to be able to take these violent criminals off the street and give the families closure,” Delray Beach Police spokeswoman Nicole Guerriero said. “Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families who grieve the loss of their loved ones.”

The shooting happened after Taylor, 56, and Hunter, 68, walked into the Community Market xxxx for their morning routine of coffee and Lotto.

Police say two masked men walked into the market, robbed the clerks, shot the two men and took off.

At the market where Taylor and Hunter were shot, clerk Mahmoud Masoud said he was sitting behind the counter when the two robbers walked in just before 6 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 23. One of the gunmen shot the two victims without a word, Masoud said.

“They did not say nothing. The one guy just shoots them,” Masoud, 26, said a day after the shooting. “It was not like robberies you see on ‘Cops,’ like ‘Put your hands up.’ This was two innocent people.”

The robbery netted the suspects less than $100, a clerk at the market said.

“The Delray Beach Police Department is pleased to be able to take these violent criminals off the street and give the families closure,” said Delray Beach Police spokeswoman Nicole Guerriero. “Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families who grieve the loss of their loved ones.”

Jackson and Reynolds face first-degree murder, robbery and firearm charges while Jerry faces murder, attempted murder and robbery charges. All remain in Palm Beach County Jail.

  Police are calling the Dec. 23 shooting deaths of two “innocent men,” Reggie Taylor and Alfonso Hunter, “heinous and cowardly.”



  Police are calling the Dec. 23 shooting deaths of two “innocent men,” Reggie Taylor and Alfonso Hunter, “heinous and cowardly.”

2014 Distinguished Alumni Award Call for Nominations


By Vickie Middlebrooks

Special to the Delray Beach Tribune

Do you know someone who graduated from the Palm Beach County public school system and is noted in their field of endeavor or recognized for their expertise and good works?  If so, we want to hear from you. The Distinguished Alumni Awards, celebrating its 5th anniversary in 2014, honors graduates who have achieved excellence in their profession and made a significant contribution to Palm Beach County or the broader community.

 Alumni must have graduated from a Palm Beach County public school and distinguished themselves through achievement, service or contributions to society locally or to the broader community.

Past honorees include:

Anquan Boldin, Wide Receiver-Baltimore Ravens

Jeffrey Colbath, Circuit Court Judge

Tiffany Kenney, Senior Anchor, WPBF News 25

Kelly Smallridge, President & CEO, Business Development Board

This program is a wonderful way to show the strength of the Palm Beach County School District and the outstanding graduates who have made their mark in professional endeavors and affected their community for the better.

We appreciate your support of the Foundation and our exemplary graduates. Please go to complete and submit a Distinguished Alumni Awards nomination prior to the November 15, 2013 deadline.

A dinner and awards ceremony will be held Thursday, February 27, 2014 at the West Palm Beach Marriott. Sponsorship opportunities and tickets are available and can be purchased through the Education Foundation. For additional event information, or contact Tracy Rudnick at 561-434-8428.

The Education Foundation of Palm Beach County, Inc. is dedicated to advancing excellence in public education by increasing public awareness and sustaining community support for programs focused on Learning, Literacy and Leadership.





“Chin Music has taken me to a place where pain meets sorrow and is conquered by love and devotion” is the opening sentence of the $1200 winning essay submitted by Kelsy Timot, a member of the Caregiving Youth Project (CYP) of the American Association of Caregiving Youth (AACY) since 2008.  She is a senior at Atlantic High School.

Kelsy, who had to grow up quickly to care for her young niece, scripted, “Facing my own every day challenges has meant putting my own childhood behind me….I have done everything that a mother should do and have seen everything only a mother should see…I have spent many a sleepless night because my niece has had trouble breathing from birth. Furthermore, since my mom works, I do the cooking and cleaning, as well as bathing my niece, and getting her ready for school. As a result, my schoolwork has been affected. I neither have time to study nor the time to enjoy myself. Caregiving Youth of America has helped me by giving me time to be a child again. Hanging out with kids my age and meeting people who cope with the same circumstances as I do have helped me overcome the challenges I face…it takes the strength of a mighty wind within us to seek help and not feel ashamed of whom we are…”

There were significant other prizes.  Cherlyn Rosemey of Boca Raton Community High won second place, an award of $750 while third and fourth place tied.  The $300 third place winners were Marica Dorzin who attends Atlantic High and Marlin Keim of Lake Worth High School.  Fourth place winners who received $100 were Rachelle Sagat of Lake Worth High and Kerry Maxime of Boca Raton Community High School.

The “novel” idea to make a difference in the lives of caregiving youth came alive by Lee Edelstein, author of Chin Music and his good friend Bob Haupt.  Edelstein donated autographed books to CYP high school juniors. Essays were evaluated according to specific criteria by three independent judges, Edelstein, Barbara Carney of Boca Raton and Christopher Noe of Delray Beach. The BOMAR Foundation sponsored the awards and the event reception was hosted by Oceans 234 on Thursday evening, Oct. 10.

Edelstein commented, “The book is not really about baseball.  It’s about the lives of people who face and overcome life’s challenges.  We all have them in our lives and it’s how we learn from them that make a difference for our futures.”

At the reception, tears filled the eyes of many as Haupt announced this would be the Inaugural Reading and Essay Contest to benefit CYP members.

AACY is a Florida based 501 (c)(3) non-profit corporation that began serving the greater Boca Raton community in 1998. Today AACY is the only organization of its kind in the United States that addresses the issues of children, who provide care for ill, injured, elderly or disabled family members.  Its model program, the Caregiving Youth Project, works in partnership with the School District of Palm Beach County. Connie Siskowski, the organization’s founder, was a 2012 CNN Top Ten Hero.

For more information call 561-391-7401 or visit



2013 College-Career Fair Sets Attendance Record

By Vickie Middlebrooks

Special to the Delray Beach Tribune


More than 4,300 students and families attended the School District’s recent College and Career Fair.

College, university and technical school representatives were astounded by the number of people who attended the event held at the South Florida Fairgrounds.  

“This was much bigger than I expected,” said the representative from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

The fair, which is held annually in October, was organized by The School Counseling and Graduation Support Team at the School District.  

Attendees were not only able to meet with more than 150 representatives from post-secondary institutions; they also previewed the new website The mission of My Future Palm Beach is to provide clear and accurate information on colleges and careers for Palm Beach County residents.

Palm Beach County Commissioner Paulette Burdick (District 2), a champion of education and economic development issues in the area, led the charge for a group of community leaders who leveraged resources and other supports to ensure families had access to give-aways and important materials at the Fair. Burdick is continuing her work as a former school board member to support college readiness initiatives across the county. 

For more information, contact Eunice Greenfield, high school counseling specialist, at or 561-434-8820.




Family fun day at Addison Mizner Elementary

By Bito David  

Addison Mizner Elementary School will hold its Family Fun Day on Nov. 2 from 10 a.m., to 3 p.m.

AMES Family Fun Day will be the Carnival Event of the season. With all sorts of games, prizes, inflatables, and even a rock wall, this event is sure to be the hit it has been in years past.

This year activities will feature: raffle items, great food and drink, and the famous Cake Walk.  Students, parents, teachers and staff all get the opportunity to do something together.

Parents, look for opportunities to purchase early bird tickets for the kids. They will be coming home in your child’s backpack soon.



Poinciana STEM Elementary Lego Robotics Afterschool Team Visits FPL Emergency Operations

By Bito David



Poinciana STEM Elementary Lego Robotics Afterschool Team visited the Florida Power & Light Emergency Operations Center in Riviera Beach recently.

The Oct. 10 field trip was to help the students with their research project on Natural Disasters. This recently constructed Category 5 building is the home to the company’s emergency operations when storms are expected to impact the FPL service area. The students were exposed to state of art technology that is used to predict and track storms, as well as systems to help us with allocation of human and physical resources needed after a storm strikes our area. Poinciana students will be competing with their research project in December.

See link below for video of students’ testimony on what they learn during the visit:

For more information, contact Lisa Lee at



South Intensive Transition Students Attend the 2013 Women of Excellence Banquet

By Bito David

Several students who attend South Intensive Transition School were invited to attend the 2013 Women of Excellence Banquet on Saturday, Sept. 28 at 6 p.m.

The event was hosted by the West Palm Beach Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. The West Palm Beach Convention Center event featured outstanding women who excelled in the areas of the arts, business, education, health and wellness, humanitarian, social action, and fortitude. South Intensive Transition School Principal Voncia Haywood collaborated with College/Career Readiness Coach Alma Horne to facilitate student participation at the event with the keynote presentation by the Chief Executive Officer of the King Center, Dr. Bernice H. King. In attendance were the Superintendent of Palm Beach County School District Mr. E. Wayne Gent, Chief Academic Officer Mrs. Cheryl C. Alligood, Area Superintendent for Area 1 Dr. Constance Tuman-Rugg and Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning Mr. Keith Oswald.

Dr. King’s remarks emphasized the importance of breaking the cycle of violence. Dr. King addressed the legacy that we are leaving today’s youth and that they have not been our priority. She shared best practices of prevention and intervention strategies that would save our youth from the streets, violence, and incarceration. The Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. described Dr. King as “creative, captivating, challenging, compelling and courageous.” Bibiana Hinojosa is an eighth grade student who had the opportunity to attend the banquet. She commented, “I am so glad my mother and I had the opportunity to attend such a special event.  I agree with Dr. Bernice King when she said that we all need to stand our ground. Also, the dinner was delicious!”

The Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc recognized the following women of excellence in the community: 1) The Arts Award – Trina Slade-Burks, co-owner of A.T.B. Fine Artists & Designers, an all-purpose art company that provides multi-disciplined art events to the community; 2) The Business Award – Dr. Barbara Carey-Shuler, first female African-American commissioner in the 65-year history of the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners to hold the powerful position of chair; 3) The Education Award – Dr. Camille Coleman, Area 4 Superintendent for the Palm Beach County School District; 4) Health and Wellness Award – Dr. Eugenia Millender, Clinical Director for Diabetes Education and Research for Florida Atlantic University; 5) Humanitarian Award – Estella Pyfrom, creator and owner of Estella’s Brilliant Bus; 6) Social Action Award – Alberdia Floyd, first African American President of the American Legion Sate of Florida Auxiliary; 7) The Fortitude Award – Alma Cabarris Horne, Graduation & Career Coach for Educational Alternatives and Intervention serving the Department of Juvenile Justice and Youth Service schools; Keeper of the Torch Award – DeAnna Warren, Executive Director of the Genesis Community Health Organization.

Mrs. Estella Pyfrom, Owner of Estella’s Brilliant Bus, had her custom made bus with 17 internet accessible computer stations equipped to travel throughout Palm Beach County to bring computer-based learning access to the internet and educational programs to more than 500 children along with their parents in under-resourced communities.

For more information, contact Voncia Haywood at 561-644-2791 or


Freedom Shores Elementary Holds 6th Annual Florida Storytelling Festival

By Deborah Stewart

The Freedom Shores Elementary School students and teachers will kick off their Sixth Annual Florida Storytelling Festival Thursday, Oct. 10, based on the book titled Fishy Friends by Michael Patrick O’Neill. The festival begins with a stage show presented by the school’s Fine Arts Team (art, music, physical education, media, guidance, and science teachers) who will sing, dance, and act to get students inspired and motivated.

The fun continues during the next few weeks as all classes read this nonfiction book with their regular classroom teachers and participate in STREAM lessons (science, reading, technology, engineering, art, and math) across the campus.  Event organizer Michelle Cates said the festival’s continued success is due to the collaborative community approach. “This strategy of joining literacy and content—immersing students in our ocean habitats and conservation of our natural Florida resources educates youngsters about the need to preserve the marine environment while strengthening their reading skills.”  The program culminates November 1st with presentations by the author and a Florida Museum in the library, featuring student projects and tactile exploration through the five senses.

In addition to creating community throughout the school, the Florida Storytelling Festival connects the school to the surrounding community. Parents are invited to participate by reading at home, writing in the school’s online discussion forum, and taking a Family Field trip to the new aquarium at the South Florida Science Museum, Sunday, Oct. 13.  The program is partially funded by a License for Learning grant through the Education Foundation. Several marine institutes are providing expert interviews for the fourth grade students via online meeting rooms, including MacArthur Beach State Park, Florida Atlantic University Marine Sciences and Harbor Institute, the Bill Foundation, and the University of South Florida’s College of Marine Science. 

The public can experience the Five Senses Museum and Blue Harmony, written and performed by music teacher Brett Ovcen at April is for Authors, April 12 at Palm Beach Gardens High School.

For details, contact Freedom Shores Elementary School Librarian Michelle Cates, 561-804-3116 or



Hit, Run Leads To Charges Against Boca Raton Woman



Brooke Mahoney, courtesy Palm Beach County Jail.

BOCA RATON, FL ( — Brooke Mahoney, 33, of Carousel Circle in Boca Raton is facing four charges related to an alleged hit and run accident, according to Boynton Beach Police.

From the Boynton Beach Police officer who took her into custody:

“I responded to 322 SW 10th Avenue in reference to a hit and run vehicle accident. Upon arrival, ultiple parties on the scene were pointing to a white in color vehicle in the roadway of 300 SW 10th Avenue. Upon approach, I observed a white female, later identified as Brooke Mahoney, sitting in the driver seat of the 2001 white in color Toyota Solara parked at that location. The Toyota appeared to be disabled due to extensive damage to its front and passenger side along with a flat tire and bent rim frame. Making contact with Brooke she was the sole adult occupant of the car. Brooke post Miranda Warnings advised that she knew nothing of an accident and all damage to her vehicle was old damage and that she was “just hanging out.” When I asked Brooke where she was she advised that she was currently “at a friend’s house” in Boca Raton. Brooke could not provide me with any persons in the City of Boynton Beach, where we were, that she knew or a logical reason for her vehicle to be disabled in the roadway.”

Mahoney was charged with three counts of Hit and Run, and one count of Reckless Driving.

Mahoney remains in the Palm Beach County Jail pending her first appearance in court this morning when bond will be determined.

She was booked into the jail at 1:30 Tuesday morning.



Lord And Taylor Now Open In Boca Raton

by Staff • October 10, 2013 2:09 pm

BOCA RATON, FL ( — There is a new shopping option in Boca Raton as Lord and Taylor has opened its doors at Mizner Park.

Lord & Taylor, a division of the Hudson’s Bay Company, opened its new store today at Mizner Park in downtown Boca Raton, Florida. The new two-level, 80,000 square foot store marks the retailer’s return to the Florida market.

“We are so excited to be in the Florida market again and have received a warm welcome from the Boca Raton community,” said Eileen DiLeo, EVP Stores for Hudson’s Bay Company. “We are enjoying reconnecting with both existing Lord & Taylor customers as well as welcoming new shoppers into our store.”

Lord & Taylor is known for a well-edited assortment of premier designers. The new store will reflect this assortment in all product categories including women’s ready-to-wear, accessories, beauty, shoes, and men’s, all of which are tailored for the Boca customer and the Florida climate. Some of the marquee brands include Michael Kors, Theory, Marc by Marc Jacobs, BCBGMAXAZRIA, Stuart Weitzman and Coach.

The new Lord & Taylor store will feature the company’s latest store design; an upgraded shopping experience in an elegant and sophisticated boutique environment. The store design – which emulates a classic style but with a new, updated twist – is all about glamour, which can be seen in such details as 300 mannequins stationed throughout the space, showcasing strong fashion statements and chandeliers imported from Italy. The store will also offer amenities to customers, including personal shopping, a spa room, valet parking and onsite alterations.

Last night, Lord & Taylor hosted a private party to benefit the Junior League of Boca Raton and the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County. The private event offered guests a first look at the new store and its modern, open concept design, as well as a glimpse into the exciting brands that are offered. Guests included Nina Garcia, Creative Director of Marie Claire and Project Runway judge, Mark Badgley and James Mischka of Badgley Mischka, designer Joseph Abboud, Richard Baker, Governor and CEO of Hudson’s Bay Company, Bonnie Brooks, President of Hudson’s Bay Company, Liz Rodbell, Incoming President of Hudson’s Bay Company, as well as leaders from the Boca Raton community.

The store’s grand opening weekend will kick off this morning, with a ribbon cutting ceremony and breakfast. Throughout the day and weekend, shoppers can enjoy a variety of activities, including entertainment by DJ Fono, a self-serve candy bar, cocktails, and a photo mingle station. Lord & Taylor has developed a calendar of events for the rest of the season to generate excitement in the community and to support local charities.

Mizner Park, an open-air, mixed-use center located in picturesque downtown Boca Raton, is the city’s luxury retail, dining, office and entertainment destination.  The 236,000-square-foot retail space offers shoppers an unparalleled experience, featuring world-renowned jewelers, top national retailers and one-of-a-kind boutiques.  The addition of Lord & Taylor will enhance Mizner Park’s stellar retail line-up, offering shoppers additional options, and filling a void for affordable, designer fashions and accessories.

“Lord & Taylor combines reputation, quality and merchandise that complements Mizner Park’s renowned retail line-up and ambience,” said Richard Pesin, EVP, General Growth Properties, Inc. “Adding this high profile anchor to the center will greatly enhance our guests’ experience here.”

The store’s hours of operation are Mon-Sat from 10-10pm, and Sun from 11-7pm. The new store has resulted in 120 new hires.


MAC announces new bowl game in Boca Raton

Published October 11, 2013

Sports Network

Cleveland, OH ( – The Mid-American Conference will participate in a newly created bowl game in Boca Raton, Fla.

On Friday, the MAC announced the creation of the Boca Raton Bowl, beginning in 2014. The contest will take place prior to Christmas and be held at FAU Stadium on the Florida Atlantic campus.

The Boca Raton Bowl will be owned and operated by ESPN.

“The Mid-American Conference is pleased to partner with ESPN and several other conferences in the creation of the Boca Raton Bowl,” said Dr. Jon Steinbrecher, Mid-American Conference commissioner, in a statement. “This has all the ingredients for an excellent bowl game: a great location, wonderful facilities for student-athletes and fans and hungry teams. I am eagerly anticipating the inaugural game in December of 2014.”

The MAC will play Conference USA in the 2014 Boca Raton Bowl and the American Athletic Conference in 2015.

The participants from several FBS conferences will rotate over a six-year period.



Job Fair to Recruit School bus Drivers Planned

The Palm Beach County School System Transportation Department will hold a job fair to recruit bus drivers on Oct. 11.

Officials said applicants should have a clean driving record, a positive attitude and a love for children. They must also pass the bus driver training course, communicate effectively in English and pass the Department of Transportation physical examination.

The district provides free training for qualified hires who do not hold a commercial driver’s license.

The district also offers exceptional retirement benefits, competitive pay, health insurance and flexible schedule, officials said.

The fair will take place at Pompey Park Recreational Center, 1101 NW 2nd Street, Delray Beach from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

To apply online, visit or call 561- 242-6500 

For more information, contact Vickie Middlebrooks in the Office of Communications at or 561-357-7661.




Local Elementary Teacher Credited For Program That Helps Seniors,Kids


When 99year-old Charlie Brooks attended elementary school, Woodrow Wilson was President of the United States, and World War I was wrapping up.

Fast forward to 2013, and Brooks finds himself once again in an elementary school classroom. Only this time, he is part of a one-of-a-kind program that is pairing up our area’s youngest with our area’s seniors.

Sunrise Park Elementary School in Boca Raton has created a unique partnership with a senior living facility that allows seven seniors, age 80 to 99 to work with students in the classroom.

The program was inspired by second grade teacher Sarah Lazarus, whose mother is currently in an assisted living facility in Miami.  It started as a simple idea a few years ago, and is now a full program for the children.

“You never would believe how well two people who are almost a century apart in age can relate to one another, and enjoy each other’s company,” Lazarus said. “The volunteers help the kids with reading, writing, math and science.  And once in a while they can slip in a little history lesson about what the world was like when they were in elementary school.”

There are so many seniors with valuable experience and knowledge that can be helping to guide, teach and motivate young learners, Principal Alicia Steiger said.  “Having them volunteer in the school gives the seniors a sense of responsibility, and feeling of being needed,” she said. “The children love the one on one attention and help they receive from the seniors and the teachers appreciate any extra help they can receive in the classroom.”

For more information about the program, call Sunrise Park Elementary School at 561.477-4300 or e-mail


Much ado About Nothing Gets a 1980s Makeover at Boca High

By Bito David

The award-winning Boca Raton Community High School Drama Department will open its season with a spectacular production of William Shakespeare’s most joyful and moving comedy, Much Ado About Nothing.  

With a talented cast of more than 35 students, a revolving stage, and even a disco dance floor, Much Ado About Nothing will run from Oct.  17 through 19in the school’s Kathryn Lindgren Theatre.

In Shakespeare’s beloved comedy Much Ado About Nothing, young, earnest Claudio falls in love upon first meeting the equally smitten Hero; much to the dismay of his comrade, Benedick, who wittily battles with the Lady Beatrice on the drawbacks of love. The stage is set for merry conflict as those who jest at love are caught in a hilarious scheme to make them fall in love. Meanwhile a malevolent plot brews to disrupt Claudio and Hero’s nuptials, setting in motion a series of events that challenge loyalty, test character, and examine the fickleness of life and love.

Boca Raton Community High School’s Kathryn Lindgren Theatre is at 1501 NW 15th Court, (just east of Interstate 95 and south of Glades Road, across from University Commons Shopping Center).

Show times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday Oct 17-19 at 7 p.m. and also on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 2 p.m.

Tickets for open seating are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. VIP Reserved seating is $15. The house opens 30 minutes prior to curtain. Group rates (for 20 or more) are available on request.

The Boca Raton Community High School season’s second major production will be the tap dancing sensation 42nd STREET. Performances will run through Feb. 27 -March 2.

 For more information, call 561-338-1533 or visit


Posted by Natalia Arenas on September 5, 2013

The School District of Palm Beach County will be celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15 with a series of events to highlight the contributions of Hispanics to our nation and local community. Students, teachers, staff and community members are cordially invited to participate and to encourage others to join.

To start the commemorations, the District has partnered with the Palm Beach County Library System to participate in the Food Truck Fiesta and Viva Hispanic Culture with Mariachi Music that is taking place on Saturday, September 7, 2013 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Main Library on Summit Blvd.   Everyone is invited to sample delicious treats from a variety of local food trucks and enjoy traditional Mexican mariachi songs by Mariachi Pancho Villa.

Students from the International Spanish Academy at Okeeheelee Middle School will be accepting the Hispanic Heritage Month Proclamation at the School Board Meeting on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at 5 p.m.

The activities that are taking place for the students include an Essay Contest for 6th  thru 12th  graders asking them to develop an essay answering the question, in English or Spanish, Who is a Latino/Hispanic individual that has inspired you and why? ¿Qué persona latina/hispana te ha inspirado y por qué?

First place winner will receive $200, second place $100 and 3rd place $50. The due date is October 3, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. Click here to view the official guidelines. The essay contest is sponsored by Comcast.

Additionally, a general celebration will take place at the Fulton Holland Educational Services Center on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 from 12 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. featuring performances from various schools around the county.

To close the celebrations, essay winners will be awarded on Saturday, October 19, 2013 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the PBC Okeechobee Library located at 5689 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach.

For a list of all the activities visit 

For more information contact Natalia Arenas at 561-357-7662 or via email


Posted by Vickie Middlebrooks on

Palm Beach District School elementary certified school counselors will participate in professional development training on a new mental health curriculum for students in grades 4 and 5.   The program, “Breaking the Silence:  Teaching the Next Generation about Mental Illness”, is designed to reduce the stigma that prevents many students and their parents from seeking help.  The training will be provided by curriculum co-authors Janet Susin and Lorraine Kaplan of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Queens/Nassau, New York. The training will take place Thursday, September 19 from 10:00 a.m. to 12 Noon at Keiser University in West Palm Beach.


The Breaking the Silence program consists of six 30-minute sessions centered on several stories and guided discussions with counselors and teachers highlighting facts about mental illness.  It has been shown that the program serves to foster understanding and replaces stigma with compassion.  Students will be sensitized to the pain caused by making fun of people who have mental illness, and will learn to relate it to other physical illnesses.

The U.S. Surgeon General reports only 20 % of youth with mental illnesses are identified and receive treatment.   Untreated mental illness is linked to behavior problems such as school failure, substance abuse, dropout, bullying and suicide.  The Breaking the Silence training will assist certified school counselors to recognize early warning signs of mental illnesses and to locate information on available services.

“Mental health is essential to learning and safety at home and at school.  All aspects of social and emotional development must be respected and taught,” said Rita Thrasher, Chair of the Palm Beach County Action Alliance for Mental Health.  “This curriculum educates the school staff to reach more children and families in need of understanding and services. This is an established program that addresses a public health crisis.  The silence and stigma around mental health must end.”

Breaking the Silence is an educational program of the National Alliance on Mental Illness Queens/Nassau.  It represents a commitment to helping people with mental illness get the treatment, respect and economic opportunities they deserve.  The Palm Beach County Action Alliance for Mental Health worked in partnership with the Single School Culture Initiatives of the School District of Palm Beach County to introduce this program in Palm Beach County.  Instructional materials are provided by the Boca Raton Regional Hospital Foundation.

For more information please contact Sean Martin, Regan Communications at 561-703-5394.


istorical Group Seeks Funding To Finish Multicultural Museum

March 13, 2001|By REBECCA ORBACH Staff Writer

DELRAY BEACH — More than five years after envisioning an African-American heritage museum, organizers have just one-third of the money they need.

Founders of the S.D. Spady Multi-Cultural Historical Museum have turned to county sources such as Palm Beach County Commissioner Addie Greene for help. The commissioner toured the site of the museum at 170 NW Fifth Ave. Monday and loved it, though she thought it was small.

“Every new museum is one little spot — and it’s not enough,” said Greene, who wants to help expand the museum’s two lots to four.

The Expanding and Preserving Our Cultural Heritage group has received $385,000 for renovations of the Spady home from Delray Beach, the Community Redevelopment Agency and Palm Beach County commissioners. Construction began in June.

But they still have a long way to go. EPOCH plans to request an additional $800,000 to $1 million from the same sources to renovate a 900-square-foot cottage next door for administrative offices and children’s programming and to build an amphitheater and pavilion. The budget also includes a garden and chicken coop behind the museum.

The main museum will be in the 2,000-square-foot Spady home. Organizers hope to build an indoor/outdoor amphitheater for performances and will possibly add a third building, creating a complex instead of one museum building.

“It’s really grown beyond our initial vision,” said Elaine Woods, executive director of EPOCH. “[Greene] will be instrumental in getting that complex stretched across and initiate some city funding and CRA funding.”

The museum will provide a history of African-American pioneers of the Delray Beach area. “I can’t think of anyone who has more culture than we have and have not seen one establishment in Palm Beach County where this has been preserved,” said Greene, who was elected in September to represent a district near the coast from Riviera Beach to Delray Beach.

Greene said she will work with county commissioners to help fund the museum with recreation and landscaping grants. She said the county also will match any city funds.

The Spady Multi-Cultural Historical Museum will become the second African-American heritage museum in Palm Beach County. The other is in West Palm Beach.

Solomon David Spady, a teacher, principal and activist, built the Mission Revival-style stucco home in 1926.

Before museum renovations began, the home had not been significantly changed. Spady’s relatives are working with EPOCH to renovate the home to its original style. Organizers said they want the home to have a lived-in, 1920s feel.

“I begged them not to fix this,” said Vera Farrington, founder and president of EPOCH, as she points to an old brick fireplace during the tour. “In 1926, the kind of work that was put into this house — this was a house before its time.” The original light fixtures and archways in each room have remained untouched.


– It can be tough to be the daughter of an icon, but Charlene Jones handles it well. For years, her mother, Vera Farrington, has been recognized as an educational and cultural community leader in South Florida, most notably in Delray Beach, where the family has resided since the mid-1920’s.

When Farrington led the efforts to found the Spady Cultural Heritage Museum in 1995, Jones was an email/file server administrator with the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. It wasn’t until 2000 that she actively joined the staff of the Spady Museum as program director, overseeing the children’s programs that help make the venue a neighborhood hub.

Now as age slows her mother, Jones, 48, has taken another step toward continuing the family legacy of historical and cultural stewardship, assuming the role of Museum Director this month and working with the board of Expanding and Preserving Our Cultural Heritage (EPOCH, Inc.) to keep the museum active and vibrant. Under her leadership as interim director, the museum has re-established its reputation with its largest funder, the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency; forged new partnerships with city and county organizations; and streamlined its offerings, so its guests and members can expect quality programs and events.

Working with a staff of two employees and two consultants, Jones oversees the museum’s funding, grant-writing, program management, facilities management and partnership facilitation. She weighs in on everything from the light bill to the Florida Power & Light sponsorship of the museum’s monthly “Ride & Remember” Trolley Tour.

“The Spady Museum is more than my mother’s legacy. It’s more than my family’s contribution to the city,” Jones said. “To me, the Spady Museum represents the voice of a people who helped to build this area into the dynamic collection of people it is now.

Without proper acknowledgment of everyone’s gifts to Delray Beach, no one can be truly acknowledged, Jones said.

“We have a special responsibility to make sure that history and culture and art from the African-, Caribbean- and Haitian-American communities are celebrated and enjoyed. It is a more than a job; it’s a dedication, but I feel it is very worthwhile one,” she said.

Jones earned her Bachelor’s in Business Administration from Mercer University in Georgia in 1985. She began her career as a salesperson for CORE International then continued as an assistant buyer for Wisteria in Boca Raton before joining the Sun-Sentinel. Her varied career experiences include professional runway model, life skills trainer, youth mentor, esthetician, wholesale computer hard drive sales and retail clothing buyer.

She is affiliated with Mt. Olive Missionary Baptist Church of Delray Beach, and is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Delray Beach Chapter; the Florida African American Preservation Network; Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce Non-Profit Council; Palm Beach County Cultural Council, Cultural Education Committee; Spirit of Giving Network and the Delray Beach West Settler’s Historic District Advisory Board.


Museum in Delray Beach loses county grant

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By Maria Herrera

Sun-Sentinel Staff Writer

Plans to build a 60-seat amphitheater on the grounds of the Spady Cultural Heritage Museum in Delray Beach have been shelved for now, and a $250,000 grant that would have funded the project was returned to Palm Beach County.

Museum officials said an uncertain economy is to blame.

“Things are so bad from an economic perspective that we’re not in a position to move forward with the project,” said Clarence Vaughn, a member of the board of directors. “But it’s not completely scratched. It is still in our plans.”

The museum is housed at the former home of Solomon D. Spady, the most prominent black teacher and activist in Delray Beach from 1922 to 1957. Since Expanding and Preserving Our Cultural Heritage Inc. was formed in 1996, the museum has been working on preserving black history in the area.

The cultural heritage group, which runs the museum, wanted to build the C. Spencer Pompey Amphitheater on its grounds on Northwest Fifth Avenue with the $250,000 from the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department.

But they needed an extra $310,000 to build the venue. In March, museum officials asked the city for the money, but city officials wanted to see a business plan before handing out the cash.

“It was a lot of money,” Mayor Woodie McDuffie said of the museum request.

McDuffie said museum officials never came back to the City Commission with the business plan. He hopes to eventually recover some of the grant on behalf of the museum, he said.

The county grant had been on hold since 2002 when the county awarded it to the museum. When they couldn’t come up with the rest of the money, Vaughn said they finally relinquished the grant.

“We weren’t going to hold that up in case there were other organizations that could benefit from it,” Vaughn said.

Cultural heritage officials also hoped that the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency would kick in half of the city grant, but at the time there was a concern about where the cultural heritage group would get the money to operate a bigger facility.

“The CRA board [and the City Commission] wanted to see a strategic plan from the museum,” said CRA Project Coordinator Elizabeth Burrows.

The CRA has been funding the cultural heritage group since 2000 when the CRA gave it a $250,000 grant. Last year, EPOCH received $180,000 from the CRA, and $105,022 for this fiscal year, Burrows said.

According to 2008 tax forms, the last year of data available, Expanding and Preserving Our Cultural Heritage Inc. collected $512,150 in contributions, gifts, grants and membership dues. It spent a total of $351,572 in salaries and benefits for four staff members, consulting services, and administration. The money also went for maintaining the historic building it occupies.

“We’ve had to reduce our budget costs,” Vaughn said. “But we’ll reconsider the plans. The economy is eventually going to turn around.”


or Cultural Groups, Funding Is Fading Fast

Government Help Is In Short Supply For Arts Organizations

August 28, 2009|By Patty Pensa Staff Writer and Staff Writers Andy Reid and Maria Herrera contributed to this report.

For the first time, the Boca Raton Museum of Art closed its doors to the public on Tuesdays this summer.

It was another sign of the economic times: A museum that calls itself a healthy nonprofit organization shutters its doors a second day of the week to cut expenses.

The museum, like other cultural organizations, is turning to government to help to make up for a drop in donations. But with municipal budgets tight, arts groups likely will be disappointed.

“For every dollar the city gives us, we’ll be spending it downtown,” said museum treasurer Joseph Borrow, pointing to the city’s repeated calls to revitalize downtown. “They want people downtown. We bring people downtown. I think it’s important the city recognize that and support that so we can bring more people downtown.”

Borrow recently made a pitch for $100,000 of city money before the City Council.

Last year, the museum got $7,200 of the $404,100 the city disbursed to nonprofits, most of which are social service – not arts – groups. The city expects to dole out the same amount for the 2009-10 fiscal year beginning in October despite an almost $5 million drop in revenue from property taxes.

The city’s largest contribution to the arts is $125,000 to the Centre for the Arts at Mizner Park, which organizes the annual Festival of the Arts BOCA and puts on concerts throughout the year.

Other governments may have to cut arts funding entirely because of budget shortfalls. While some small cities don’t contribute to the arts, county governments have been an important mechanism for such funding. Delray Beach’s major cultural organization, Old School Square Cultural Arts Center, hasn’t increased its request for city money in three years. But the City Commission cut funding 5 percent for 2009-10.

Delray Beach also trimmed 5 percent from EPOCH, which runs the Spady Cultural Heritage Museum. Special event funding is down 10 percent.

Palm Beach and Broward counties both are considering decreasing their support, with Palm Beach County possibly dropping arts funding altogether. The Palm Beach County Cultural Council relies on county tax dollars to help provide grants for artists and cultural groups, as well as money for arts education. But instead of the $291,000 the council received from county property tax dollars this year, next year’s proposed budget calls for zero funding.

Money the council receives from hotel bed taxes would be cut from $400,000 to $242,000. The proposed reductions are part of across-the-board county spending cuts. The county also plans to raise property tax rates as much as 15 percent.

Miles Coon, director of the Palm Beach Poetry Festival, is among those calling on the county to reconsider arts cuts. “The arts are essential to the lives of our county’s citizens,” he said in an e-mail to commissioners.

Not only essential, said Charlie Siemon, president of the Mizner Park Cultural Arts Association, but the arts can define a community. Siemon wants Boca Raton officials to make a bigger contribution to the arts, requesting a $2.5 million investment (at $30 per resident).

“All the great cities and towns around the world all have some distinctive cultural element,” Siemon said. “Communities have to have an identity to sustain themselves over time.”

Though Siemon said he plans to be a “squeaky wheel” continuing to talk about arts funding, his push for government money comes at an improbable time. Still, Siemon said, now is the time arts groups need the government the most.

“It would be a difficult thing to put in [the budget],” said Assistant City Manager Mike Woika. “The budget is tight.”

Staff Writers Andy Reid and Maria Herrera contributed to this report.

Patty Pensa can be reached at ppensa@ or 561-243-6609.


From $291,000 to nothing?

The Palm Beach County Cultural Council relies on county tax dollars to help provide money for arts education, as well as grants for artists and cultural groups. The council received $291,000 from county property tax dollars this year. Next year’s proposed budget calls for zero funding.








After deciding that he was hungry, 19-year-old Porter Williams launched a plan.

Williams decided to order pizza and then rob the delivery driver, according to Delray Beach police.

Williams, of West Palm Beach, and two other men were arrested this week on allegations that they robbed a Papa John’s pizza delivery driver. Also arrested were Ralph Spencer, 21, of Hanahan, S.C., and Sameer Mohammed, 19, of Delray Beach. The incident happened shortly before 10 p.m. Monday, according to a probable-cause arrest affidavit.

The alleged victim told police that he arrived at a residence in the 1000 block of Mango Drive to make a pizza delivery. As he approached the door, he felt what he believed to be a knife being pressed against his back.

One suspect whose face was covered demanded money, while the other took the pizza, the delivery man told police.

The two suspects — later identified as Williams and Spencer — got into a vehicle to flee. The delivery man followed in his vehicle, called police and gave them updates on where their car was going.

Officers caught up to the car in the area of South Dixie Highway and Lamat Avenue and conducted a traffic stop. Williams opened the front passenger door and took off.

Police detained Mohammed, the car’s driver, Spencer and two passengers. Williams was caught and taken into custody a short time later. Police questioned, but did not charge, two passengers.

Williams told police that he ordered pizzas and waited in the car for the driver to arrive, the affidavit said. Williams then said that he and Spencer got out and robbed the delivery driver, according to the affidavit.

Williams faces robbery, resisting an officer and probation violation charges. He’s being held without bond.

Spencer and Mohammed each face a robbery-with-a-weapon charge; both remain in jail wihtout bond

Komenda, Sun Sentinel

8:17 p.m. EST, January 7, 2013

Sitting in the passenger’s seat of a friend’s car, Shawn Day allegedly told the cops he had no idea how the bag of heroin landed in his lap.

His explanation, a Delray Beach police report says, didn’t alter his trajectory to jail.

The 29-year-old Delray Beach man caught the attention of police when his buddy, Patrick Webster, pulled his 1995 Mitsubishi into the parking lot of the Budget Inn at 1600 N. Federal Highway.

The area has been known for heavy drug traffic. When a woman walked up to the car and exchanged something with Webster – a reputed drug user – the cops sensed something was wrong.

Officers pulled the over and looked at Day, who was riding shotgun. They noticed a heroin-filled baggy on his lap.

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“He said he did not know where it came from,” an officer wrote in the report.

Day then landed in the Palm Beach County Jail in lieu of $5,000 bond., 561-243-6531, Twitter: @ejkomenda




January 16, 2013

Mayoral candidate Cary Glickstein is a community leader who has served on numerous city boards. He said his campaign is not about press releases and parties, but is instead an effort to engage the community in substantive issues.

“We’re running this campaign a little different than what you’re probably used to,” he said. “Our campaign won’t be having a party for a small group of people entertained over a veggie tray.”

Glickstein said he is focused on the upcoming City Commission and mayoral debates, which are taking place ahead of the March 12 municipal election. He said he is eager to face off against his fellow candidates.

“The more [debates], the better,” he said. “I’d like to participate in any debates or community forums. I think the voters are entitled to compare and contrast the candidates.

“I’m excited about opening up dialogue at any open forum.”

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The Delray Citizens’ Coalition is getting set to host a mayoral candidate forum from 6 to 9 p.m. Feb. 20 at Veterans Park, 802 NE First St.

The past few weeks have been a busy time for Glickstein and his campaign manager, Bret Daniel. They have been touring the city in hope of building grass roots support, an effort that appears to be paying off. In a Jan. 4 news release, Daniel stated that Glickstein was the first candidate to gather enough petitions to earn a spot on the March ballot.

Glickstein is a developer who owns and operates Ironwood Properties, Inc. He has lived in Delray Beach for the past 25 years.

Among Glickstein’s supporters is former Mayor Jeff Perlman. “I’m impressed with Cary’s experience, his business skills, his intelligence and most of all his independence,” Perlman said. “He’s always been passionate about Delray. He loves the city, and as someone who did the job Cary’s seeking, I know he would bring an awful lot to the position.”

Another supporter is Chuck Halberg, owner of Stuart & Shelby Development Inc. in Delray Beach. Halberg served four years on the Planning and Zoning Board with Glickstein.

“Cary is a real-life guy and will be a great mayor,” he said. “He knows how to create jobs, he knows how important local schools are and he is a truly independent thinker who gets things done.”

For more information, visit Cary Glickstein for Mayor on Facebook or

// Copyright © 2013, South Florida Sun-Sentinel



January 16, 2013

Barrier island resident Stephen Blum said he doesn’t mind being known as a candidate who upsets the status quo by posing difficult questions to elected officials. In fact, he said he’s in good company.

“Plato referred to Socrates as a gadfly for his constant berating of the Athenian political scene,” Blum said.

Blum has invested a great deal of time and energy in his campaign for Seat Three on the City Commission, hoping to challenge officials on their past decisions. He said those decisions have had negative consequences for citizens and neighborhoods.

Blum, who is running against Commissioner Adam Frankel in the city’s March 12 municipal election, cited three issues that would have been dealt with differently had he been on the dais.

The first was the fire fee, which Blum opposed on the grounds that it was tax increase masquerading as a fee.

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“When we protested… they somehow re-crunched the numbers and balanced the budget,” he said. “[It was] a victory for the citizens, but one we should not have had to fight.”

Blum also opposed a $60 million no-bid contract with Waste Management, saying it violated city rules and was not in keeping with good business practices.

“Past mayors, HOA presidents and many residents protested to no avail,” he said.

In addition, Blum had reservations about new building projects at Atlantic Crossing and Delray Place. He said both projects will be detrimental to the citizens and surrounding neighborhoods and will create parking problems while adding to congestion.

“Both projects, in my opinion, go against the spirit and intent of our city master plan,” he said. “It’s a third battle we should not be fighting.”

Blum said he would make the beach a priority as a member of the commission. Calling it “the crown jewel of Delray Beach,” he said that it not only increases property values but also improves residents’ quality of life.

“If it were not for the beach, we’d be going the way of many cities around the country and into bankruptcy,” he said. “Our beach really took a hit from Hurricane Sandy, and although we have a continuing beach re-nourishment plan in effect, it’s not nearly enough.”

Blum is a 15-year city resident who previously lived in Washington, D.C., where he operated an advertising firm. For the past six years, he’s been at the helm of the Antilles Homeowners Association.

// Copyright © 2013, South Florida Sun-Sentinel


Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013 | 8:04 a.m.


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Editorial: Delray Place too big for the place it wants to be

By Randy Schultz

Editor of the Editorial Page

Yet another supposedly transformational Delray Beach development project is too big for the area it seeks to transform.

In December, the project was Atlantic Plaza II, on the two downtown blocks east of Veterans Park. After the developer made minor changes, the city commission approved the project. Neighbors to the south and east, however, intend to file a lawsuit challenging the approval. They will argue that Atlantic Plaza II would overwhelm the neighborhood.

Now the project is Delray Place, 12 buildings proposed for roughly 10 acres on the southeast corner of Linton Boulevard and Federal Highway. As with Atlantic Plaza II, the developer promises to create a pedestrian-friendly retail/restaurants draw on a “prominent gateway” that Delray Beach has identified as important to the city’s economy. As with Atlantic Plaza II, the developer wants code waivers to make it happen — for parking, open space, setbacks and landscaping. Even more than with Atlantic Plaza, Delray Place is asking to put too much on a piece of property.

As the planning staff report noted in recommending against the waiver to reduce open space from 25 percent to 17.5 percent, “this site is too small for the amount of commercial spaces proposed. The required open space can be provided by reducing the building area, and balancing the parking.” For that waiver and others, the staff cautioned that approval would amount to a “special exemption” — a benefit for just one project, which would be illegal.

The staff report also debunked the idea that traffic from the project would not affect adjacent neighborhoods because many people would walk to Delray Place. Unlike Atlantic Avenue, Linton and Federal is not a pedestrian area. The staff concludes, correctly, that most people would drive. Allowing fewer parking spaces would worsen the impact from traffic.

The city commission was supposed to consider Delray Place last week. The developer, though, asked that the issue be delayed. Presumably, the developer will propose a revision that complies with the code. Delray Place has dangled the lure of a Trader Joe’s, the specialty grocery chain. A successful project on that property would be good for the city. But the developer must satisfy the city, not the other way around.

The commission that gave waivers to Atlantic Plaza II will be in office until the end of March. The new site for Delray Place supposedly will be ready in March. Expect a rush to have the current commission decide.

Randy Schultz

for The Post Editorial Board




By Ed Komenda

5:03 p.m. EST, January 16, 2013

Joe McLendon and Anthony Colon have something in common: police say their companies offered victims of timeshare scams help for a fee, collected the cash and disappeared.

When victims called to follow up, no one answered.

Between the two of them, Colon and McLendon collected more than $90,000 in two separate timeshare recovery scams, according to Delray Beach Police.

McLendon, 39, of Boynton Beach, and Colon, 38, of Delray Beach, both stand charged with numerous counts of grand theft and money laundering.

In January 2011, Colon rented a mailbox at a UPS Store on Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach.

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There, his arrest report says, Colon received more than 20 checks totaling more than $70,000 from victims in 11 states. Victims made the checks out to his company, Liberty Fraud Protection LLC.

Colon then cashed the checks at Tony’s Market & Deli.

The market requires customers wanting to cash checks to create a biographical profile, including a photo and fingerprints. Verified with that information, all customer transactions are stored on a computer database, which authorities used to track Colon’s activity.

Colon typically called victims, the report says, and claimed he had buyers for their timeshares, asking for money to cover court fees. But Colon never delivered on his promises.

“Colon was also cashing payroll checks at Tony’s Market issued by other fraudulent timeshare companies,” the report says.

Around the same time Colon rented a mailbox in January 2011, McLendon registered his company, State Refund Department LLC, with the state.

That company offered a different kind of help, calling 10 elderly victims previously targeted in timeshare scams and offering restitution checks for a fee, officials say. Representatives often posed as agents of government or law enforcement.

The victims sent checks, totaling more than $22,000, to McLendon’s mailbox in Delray Beach. In return, they got nothing.

Police booked both McLendon and Colon into the Palm Beach County Jail Tuesday — McLendon in lieu of $24,000 bond and Colon in lieu of $32,000 bond.

Both men bailed out of jail later that day., 561-243-6531, Twitter: @ejkomend




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// Updated: 5:59 p.m. Monday, Jan. 14, 2013 | Posted: 4:38 p.m. Monday, Jan. 14, 2013

House fire displaces at least two people, damages home in Delray Beach

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By Julius Whigham II


A fire significantly damaged a Delray Beach house this afternoon, Delray Beach Fire Rescue said.

No one was injured, but the fire left two adults temporarily homeless, said Capt. Curtis Jepsen, Fire Rescue spokesman.

The fire started shortly after 4 p.m. in the 500 block of Southwest Fourth Street, which is east of Interstate 95 and south of Atlantic Avenue. Arriving crews found smoke coming from all sides and flames coming from the front of the home, Jepsen said.

Crews knocked down the fire shortly before 4:30 p.m.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated. Volunteers from the local American Red Cross were called in to assist. The adults are being provided with recovery supplies.



. EST, January 16, 2013

Delray Beach has a new city manager.

The City Commission voted 3-2 to approve a contract with Louie Chapman, currently town manager of Bloomfield, Conn., who had to go through a rigorous vetting process after being picked as the top candidate Dec. 12.

“I believe that Chapman has 19 years of experience and the credentials and experience to move our community forward,” said Vice Mayor Angeleta Gray. “I know that changes are scary and frightening to some people. But I feel that Chapman is more than qualified, and we have a wonderful staff and there should not have been any issues with him stepping in.”

Chapman, 60, will be staring April 1 at a salary of $160,000 a year. Chapman replaces David Harden, who served the city for 22 years until Jan. 3 and who has been credited with the redevelopment efforts that led to the city’s downtown boom.

Some commissioners fretted over the decision to pick Chapman after being bombarded by allegations that Chapman may not have always acted ethically at his previous job.

But at a workshop meeting Monday night, background investigator Ron Holifield put many of those concerns to rest.

Holifield, president and chief executive officer of Strategic Government Resources, a consultant the city hired to conduct a background check on Chapman, told commissioners that after more than 200 hours of interviews and research, the allegations against Chapman are not true.

“The issues that came up that were being alleged by the individual folks in many cases were she-said, he-said kind of dynamic,” Holifield told the commissioners Monday. “We found no clear evidence that the allegations were true.”

Among the allegations were that Chapman used a town truck to help his girlfriend, who worked at the Bloomfield Police Department, move. The commission also received letters and emails alleging that Chapman was involved in actions that resulted in an unlawful retaliation lawsuit in 1996 that resulted in Bloomfield having to pay $232,000 in damages.

Other allegations accused Chapman of making decisions in 2007 that resulted in an unlawful discrimination lawsuit and a Human Rights and Opportunities Commission case after he terminated a police officer. Bloomfield had to pay back wages, medical expenses and unemployment compensation totaling $111,315, plus interest.

Commissioner Christina Morrison, who voted against approving the employment agreement, said her concerns had nothing to do with Chapman’s personal life but with his management style and the fact that Bloomfield is a much smaller town without a fire department and a much smaller police department, which she said was riddled with cases of misconduct.

She suggested starting the search over after a three- to six-month wait.

Commissioner Adam Frankel, who also voted against the agreement, agreed that the search should have been larger.

“The vetting progress created as many questions as answers. This would not have been my first choice,” Frankel said. “However, if the majority chooses Chapman, from the moment that choice is made, I will be rooting for his success.” or 561-243-6544.


Fight over woman leads to shooting in Delray Beach


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updated 1/15/2013 3:18:13 PM ET 2013-01-15T20:18:13

A fight involving a woman led to a shooting in Delray Beach, police said.

The shooting happened just before 2 p.m. in the 900 block of Southwest 10th Avenue.

fight involving a woman led to a shooting in Delray Beach, police said.


The shooting happened just before 2 p.m. in the 900 block of Southwest 10th Avenue.

A Delray Beach police spokeswoman said two men got into an altercation over a woman. She said one of the men had a gun and the other man had a knife.

MUGSHOTS: Who Got Arrested In South Florida?

The man was the knife was shot in the leg and flown to Delray Medical Center. He was expected to survive.

The man with the gun was taken into custody.

Neither man’s identity has been released.

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// Updated: 4:52 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013 | Posted: 2:35 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013

Delray Beach police investigate shooting, road now open

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By Ana M. Valdes

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

A portion of S.W. 10 Street near the 900 block in Delray Beach that was closed this afternoon while police investigated a shooting has re-opened, according to a police spokeswoman.

Police were called to the scene at about 1 p.m. after reports that two men were fighting, possibly over a woman, according to police spokeswoman Sgt. Nicole Guerriero.

One of the suspects had a gun, and the other had a knife. The man carrying the gun allegedly shot the other in the leg.

The alleged shooter was arrested, Guerriero said, and the suspect who was shot was taken to Delray Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

Check back for updates on this story.





Bloomfield Town Manager Accepts Florida Job

Louie Chapman Expects To Remain In Town Until April


1:52 p.m. EST, January 16, 2013


Town Manager Louie Chapman has been hired as city manager in Delray Beach, Fla.

The Delray Beach City Commission voted 3 to 2 to hire Chapman Tuesday night.

Chapman, town manager since 1993, said Wednesday that he expects to remain on the job until sometime in April.

Chapman said that staying on until then would offer him the opportunity to see the town through one more budget cycle.

He also reflected on his 19 years as town manager and a Bloomfield resident, and his departure.

“It’s bittersweet. It’s been a good place for me professionally and personally,” he said. “The relationships I have formed here will last a lifetime. It will be a very sad day when I say good-bye.”

Chapman said he is also excited and enthusiastic about the new challenges and opportunities awaiting him in Florida.

Chapman was officially named the finalist for the job in mid-December, when the commission voted 3 to 2 to enter into contract negotiations.

But his hiring was stalled later in December when the city commission postponed a vote after Alvin Schwapp, a retired Bloomfield police lieutenant, contacted Florida officials and raised concerns of unethical behavior by Chapman. Schwapp alleged that Chapman had used a town vehicle to help his girlfriend, a police department clerk, move.

Schwapp also accused Chapman of preventing him from being given serious consideration for the vacant Bloomfield police chief’s job after he objected to having the town’s human resources director escorted out of town hall by police.

The city commission investigated the claims before Tuesday’s vote.

Chapman, who denied the allegations, said he had no hard feelings about the accusations or the delay.

“It was done in the clear air and nobody had heartburn about the process being rushed,” he said.

From: City of Delray Beach

Commission Authorizes Staff to Proceed with Contract Negotiations.

The City of Delray Beach City Commission has selected Louie Chapman, Jr. to serve as the City’s next City Manager. Mr. Chapman was selected by the Commission on a 3 to 2 vote and, upon approval of an employment contract by the City Commission, will replace City Manager David T. Harden, who will retire in January 2013 after twenty-two (22) years of service to the Delray Beach community.

For the past nineteen (19) years, Mr. Chapman has served as Town Manager for the Town of Bloomfield, Connecticut, a community of 20,000 residents. Prior to his current position, Mr. Chapman served as the Assistant City Manager in Charlottesville, Virginia. He has earned a Master’s Degree in Planning from the University of Virginia and a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science from Norfolk State University.  For additional information about Mr. Chapman’s experience and education, please visit: .

The City Attorney’s Office, at the direction of the Commission, will begin employment contract negotiations with Mr. Chapman immediately.  In addition, the Commission may hold additional workshops/special meetings to discuss and/or approve the proposed contract with Mr. Chapman.

An interim City Manager will be appointed by the City Commission to take on the responsibilities of the City Manager following the retirement of Mr. Harden on January 4, 2013, and will remain in this position until the new City Manager begins employment with the City of Delray Beach.

For more information, please contact the Public Information Office at (561) 243-7190 or E-mail


Editorial: Delray Beach rushing choice of new manager

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By Randy Schultz

Editor of the Editorial Page

If the Delray Beach City Commission’s approval Tuesday night of Atlantic Plaza II was a big deal, which it was, the commission faces a bigger decision today — choosing a city manager.

Given the esteem in which Delray Beach’s political/civic establishment holds the city, the search to replace David Harden has drawn a comparatively unimpressive field of four finalists. The choice also comes three months before city elections. Mayor Nelson “Woodie” McDuffie is term-limited, and Commissioner Adam Frankel is on the ballot. There’s a sense that this commission is rushing to lock in decisions with long-range implications.

None of the four finalists stands out. The best guess would be that the commission picks Assistant City Manager Doug Smith. He has held the post for seven years, the insider is always the safe choice, and Mr. Harden timed his retirement for January. Why not continue the policies of the last 22 years, during which Delray Beach has transformed itself?

The David Harden of recent years, however, has fought oversight by the Office of Inspector General. He got the city too entangled in the Mary McCarty ethics case. He was willing to wave through the Atlantic Plaza II project with even fewer changes than the developer offered. Just as Delray Beach benefited from hiring an outsider like David Harden in 1990, Delray Beach might benefit from an outsider now.

But which one? Paul D. White spent almost a decade as an assistant city manager in Riviera Beach, and now works for the city’s community redevelopment agency. Whatever Mr. White’s strengths or weaknesses, Riviera Beach is the most ineptly run city of any size in Palm Beach County, and that is Mr. White’s current point of reference.

Another finalist is Oel Wingo, who runs a management consulting company. She spent a tumultuous 20 months as manager of Holly Hill, a city of 12,000 near Daytona Beach, before being fired in October 2010. The Florida Commission on Ethics found probable cause to investigate Ms. Wingo for tampering with documents and exceeding her authority. The commission dismissed the complaint, which Ms. Wingo blamed on reaction from changes she had to make.

The out-of-state candidate is Louie Chapman, Jr., CEO of Bloomfield, Conn., a suburb of Hartford. In that role, Mr. Chapman also runs the town school district. He also referfed to himself in his application as Bloomfield’s “principle” labor negotiator. Does Delray Beach want someone who doesn’t check his resume?

A commission-chosen panel interviewed the candidates Thursday. Residents have reason to suspect that the plan is to hire Mr. Smith. If it happens this way, he could lose credibility. Given the field, this commission easily could leave the decision to the next commission.

Randy Schultz

Allegations Made Against Bloomfield Town Manager

Retired Local Police Officer Alleges Unethical Behavior; Chapman Denies Any Impropriety

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By STEVEN GOODE The Hartford Courant

4:14 a.m. EST, January 4, 2013


A retired town police officer has contacted officials in Delray Beach, Fla., where Town Manager Louie Chapman is a finalist for city manager, and accused Chapman of unethical behavior.

Delray Beach officials offered Chapman the job on Dec. 11, but when retired police Lt. Alvin Schwapp told them that Chapman used a city vehicle to help his girlfriend move, they decided to investigate the allegations.

Schwapp said he contacted Delray Beach officials because he believes public officials should be held to high standards.

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Chapman, who called the allegations “character assassination,” said that he used a car given to him by the town — on which there were no restrictions — to help move his girlfriend, who works for the Bloomfield Police Department as a clerk-typist.

“It’s pretty plain that it’s designed to cause Delray to withdraw their offer,” Chapman said. “If someone is going to start a smear campaign against you, there’s not much you can do. You just say a prayer for them and keep living your life the way you live it.”

Schwapp said he believes Chapman prevented him from being seriously considered for the police chief’s job when it was open. The reason, he claims, is because he objected to Chapman’s idea of having the town’s human resources director escorted from the building by a police officer shortly before she retired.

Chapman, however, said he never followed through on that idea, and also denied that the incident had any bearing on Schwapp’s potential candidacy for the chief’s job.

Schwapp said he brought the issue before Mayor Sydney Schulman and Deputy Mayor Donald Harris when it came up, and that his discussion with Delray Beach officials was not a case of “sour grapes.”

“I was compelled to offer my perspective on Mr. Chapman based on my professional interactions,” Schwapp said. “What was brought to the City of Delray Beach officials’ attention is the same information which was brought to the attention of Mayor Schulman and then Deputy Mayor Harris by myself and others at the time the events occurred.”

“It was the right thing to do and I continue to be an ardent supporter of [Bloomfield Police] Chief [Paul] Hammick,” Schwapp said.

The Delray Beach City Commission met Thursday and postponed a vote on Chapman’s contract until Jan. 15.

// //  

Louie Chapman Says Has Not Accepted The Position Yet

December 12, 2012|By STEVEN GOODE,, The Hartford Courant

BLOOMFIELD — — Town Manager Louie Chapman is the finalist for the city manager’s position in Del Ray Beach, Fla.

The Delray Beach City Commission voted 3-2 Tuesday to negotiate a contract with Chapman.

Chapman said Wednesday that he had not yet accepted the position or been made an offer, but that he was interested in “sitting down with them to see if we can work out the terms.”


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“Delray is a good combination of a tourist destination and hard working community,” he said. “It would be a good place to be city manager.”

Chapman has been town manager for 19 years. Delray Beach is on Florida’s Atlantic coast, between Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.

Bloomfield Mayor Sydney Schulman said that the town has grown a lot during Chapman’s tenure and that he leaves the town in a strong financial position.

“We wish him good luck and good fortune,” Schulman said.

Former town councilman Jon Colman said Wednesday that Chapman would be missed if he accepts the job.

“He is exceedingly ethical and has the ability to say no without burning bridges or upsetting people,” Colman said.

Colman said Chapman deserves much credit for the development of the Wintonbury Hills municipal golf course and bringing corporate business to town while preserving open space.

“He retained the character of the town while fostering economic development,” Colman said, adding that Chapman will leave behind a skilled management team.

“His successor will have a great team in place,” he said. “The town shouldn’t miss a beat.”

Chapman said he approached Delray Beach officials to express his interest in the job, but declined to say if he had any issues with the Bloomfield Town Council.

If he accepts the position, Chapman said he expected to leave by February.

Schulman said he was confident that Chapman will complete his work on the town’s 2013 budget before he departs.



  • //                                                         Delray Beach commissioners hire new city manager

December 11, 2012|By Maria Herrera, Sun Sentinel

The City Commission late Tuesday chose Louie Chapman Jr., town manager of Bloomfield, Conn., a suburb of Hartford, to be the city’s next city manager.

The 3-2 vote came at a regular City Commission meeting scheduled immediately after a workshop meeting where much of the deliberation took place.

Chapman was chosen to replace City Manager David Harden, who will be retiring Jan. 3 after 22 years of service.

Officials had already narrowed down the candidates to two — Assistant City Manager Doug Smith and Chapman — after a round of public interviews with the top four contenders Friday.

Last week, commissioners were trying to choose between Smith’s institutional knowledge of Delray Beach and Chapman’s 19-year experience as Bloomfield’s town manager.

Vice Mayor Tom Carney said he called staff members in the town of Bloomfield and even talked to newspaper reporters to find out more about Chapman.

“I think Delray should have someone who has been a manager,” Carney said. “From everything I got I think it’s important that we have fresh eyes here.”

Commissioner Angeleta Gray liked Chapman’s credentials.

“He has decreased [Bloomfield’s] budget and he works well with staff and empowers staff,” Gray said.

Commissioner Al Jacquet said he wanted to get a fresh set of eyes in the city manager’s post that could help move the city forward.

But Commissioner Adam Frankel was adamant about persuading his fellow officials on the dais to pick Smith. He said last week that that he worried that if the City Commission didn’t pick Smith, the city could be losing his institutional knowledge to another city.

Smith had been assistant city manager since September 2005. He assisted Harden in many projects, some of which included preparing budgets and serving as the city’s trustee on boards such as the Police and Firefighters Retirement System.

“One thing I failed to mention and that to me is of the utmost importance is that every staff member I’ve spoken to is behind Smith,” Frankel said. “We’re at a time when there’s going to be a lot of transitions. There are a lot of senior staff members who are facing retirement and it’s too much upheaval for me.”

Mayor Woodie McDuffie said he interviewed Chapman again over the weekend. McDuffie and was taken aback by how many times Chapman said he wouldn’t clean house if he was hired, even though McDuffie never brought up the issue.


“It caused me to pause. It bothered me a little bit,” McDuffie said.

In addition, McDuffie said the commission hadn’t discussed at length Chapman’s background, which includes an arrest for domestic violence, according to McDuffie. Although the charges were dropped, McDuffie said it was something to consider.

During the Friday interviews, commissioners questioned Chapman about the arrest.

“We were at the end of the road and our relationship had gotten a little bit toxic,” Chapman said. “I was vindicated of the specific charges.”

“We have someone in hand who we know very well, and I’m uncomfortable with changing that,” McDuffie said of Smith. “I will also support whoever is chosen, but my choice is Doug Smith.”



10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Louie Chapman, Jr.

Louie Chapman, Jr.: I come to you from Bloomfield, Connecticut. I’ve been town manager there for 19 ¾ years. I practiced the business of being a town manager for 27 years in two

different communities – the City Charlottesville, Virginia and the Town of Bloomfield. In

Charlottesville I was the assistant city manager for about seven years doing most of the

operational stuff related to all of the departments, except for the financial department. In

Bloomfield, I’ve been the chief administrative officer, chief labor negotiator, and have done

some things that are innovative relative to our pension.



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 2 of 25

I am a graduate of Norfolk State University and the University of Virginia. I started my

career as a city planner. I have a master’s degree in city planning as opposed to public

administration. It wired my brain different in terms of how you look at municipal

government. I think that municipal government can be a source to provide people with

quality in their lives. I am excited about the prospect of being considered for your next


Council Member Greg Jones: Talk to me about your history with economic development in

the private sector, hitting on the golf course that you helped create for your town.

Chapman: We built a golf course as a result of a community visioning process. Bloomfield

is the corporate headquarters to the Cigna Corporation, which has about 3,500 to 3,700

employees. We thought it was an excellent opportunity to do a recreational activity and also

be able to link it to economic development. It has yielded almost all the expectations we

thought it would. It is almost at break even in its seventh year. The course is privately


Vice Mayor Molly Tasker: How were you first drawn to public service?

Chapman: While other people were trading baseball cards, I was talking about local

government. I’ve always been a government junkie; it is something I was drawn to. The

prospect of providing service to our fellow citizens to try to improve their lives is an attractive

calling to me, and I’ve devoted all of my employment history to that goal.

Council Member John Thomas: How do you view your relationship with and what would

your approach be with the police and fire unions?

Chapman: First and foremost, people who are parts of those unions are employees of the

City of Melbourne. As such, they should be treated with dignity and respect. That doesn’t

mean we will always end up having coalescence of ideas, but it does mean we are going to

have a fundamental respect for one another.

Council Member Harry Goode: Melbourne, this Council, the Airport Authority have been

very productive in acquiring new growth, good growth and high quality growth. I’d like to

see that continue. What are your thoughts?

Chapman: I think that the Airport is a diamond in Melbourne. I flew into Melbourne. When I

went to the rental car desk, they gave me a set of keys and told me to go and get a car. I

haven’t been to an Airport that is that nice. I didn’t have to show my driver’s license four

different times. It represents an opportunity for people to come to Melbourne from a number

of different places. The growth that has occurred around there ends up being a testament

to the asset the Airport is.

Mayor Kathy Meehan: We have three community redevelopment areas in Melbourne.

What has been your experience with CRAs?


Chapman: I haven’t had a lot of experience with them because that ends up being a

creature that is a little bit unique to Florida. They can represent a very powerful tool that you

can use to assist development in a lot of different ways. That would be an area that I would

have to spend more time on if I were selected.

Council Member Betty Moore: I’d like to know your expertise on land acquisition and city


Chapman: I think I was a planner when I was last involved in annexation. Annexation in

Virginia is slightly different because you had to compensate the party whom you were

annexing from; there was a lot of financial analysis associated with it. My experience is that

annexation for growth purposes in general is a good thing.

Council Member Mike Nowlin: As we’ve expanded businesses at the Airport, there is

always potential for spin off mom/pop businesses. Do you see an opportunity to give small

businesses that are currently in the City an avenue to expand and do you see an avenue

where we can attract new small businesses to come here?

Chapman: The lifeblood of business is small business. Almost every large business

started out as a small business. If there are opportunities for us to attract and expand

existing small businesses in that niche market that serves the general Airport corridor, that

is an opportunity that we ought to pursue.

Council Member Jones: What do you see as the Council’s role in the community?

Chapman: I think that the City Council is the face and voice of the community. You are the

people who appear on the ballot. You are the people who go out and solicit votes. You are

the people who make promises or commitments to people about things you are going to

accomplish while you’re in office. Council has an obligation to fulfill those kinds of roles.

Obviously you have ultimately a role as a policy maker in terms of setting the direction of the


Vice Mayor Tasker: What sort of organizational model have you used in your past

experience? Has it been vertical? Flat? What kind of flow do you expect to have with your


Chapman: There will always be a hierarchy as far as people being designated as

department heads. I also like talent mining. If there is somebody in the organization who is

up and coming who wants to expand the areas they are involved in, I would certainly

consider doing that. I’ve used people in non-traditional roles. Ad hoc committees, task

forces, those kinds of things are all opportunities to use talent below the department head

level in terms of developing second tier leadership.

Council Member Thomas: Describe your leadership style and your approach to your staff.



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 4 of 25

Chapman: I am very detail oriented and I like for my staff people to be detail oriented. I’m

not a micro-manager. I give people a range of authority, and I want people to make

appropriate kinds of decisions and not under-decide or over-decide.

Council Member Goode: The City of Melbourne has had a continuing program of a team of

lobbyists, in Tallahassee and in Washington. Would you be supportive of continuing that?

Chapman: Absolutely. I think that any money, resources you can get from sources other

than taxpayers of Melbourne is high on my agenda.

Mayor Meehan: Please describe a situation where you had to step up and lead relative to a

controversial issue.

Chapman: About two years ago I had a disagreement with, I lost a police chief and I had to

go out and recruit a new police chief. The process that we would use to select the police

chief became controversial. I ended up using a citizens’ advisory board. I clearly had the

authority, but if I had done it in a vacuum, it would have left a lot of community acrimony. It

required that I step up to the plate and change my leadership style a little bit.

Council Member Moore: Regarding bringing in new business and retaining the small

businesses we have now, how would you go about that?

Chapman: Small businesses are the lifeblood of a community, but often they end up

operating on a shoestring. Almost every small business will identify working capital as one

of their biggest problems. There are things the City can do to improve the overall business


Moore follow-up: How would you go about bringing new business or industry to the City?

Chapman: You have to go out and try and recruit them; you have to identify the likely


Council Member Nowlin: Technology changes at a rapid pace. Do you believe we should

be the first to own new technology with regard to vehicles, computer equipment, etc.?

Chapman: I learned my lesson when I bought a Chevrolet Cavalier the first year they made

it. That was probably the worst car I ever owned. I don’t want to be on the leading edge of

something, but I don’t want to be too far behind in terms of the use of technology. The back

end of the leading edge is where I would be.

Council Member Jones: We have a lot of high end technology companies that need to

recruit 25 – 35 year old professionals and retain them long enough to get value out of them.

What do you see as the role of the City in creating an environment to recruit and retain

talent to this area?



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 5 of 25

Chapman: I think that Melbourne has an impressive story to tell. It offers people a quality of

life. Part of that is to be close to where you work. You have a broad range of housing in

this community, which is attractive for people who are starting out or people who are

advanced in their career. You have a lot of physical elements, an attractive, beautiful

community. It’s a matter of making sure that people know about the high quality of life. If

you are successful in branding that, you can retain people in those industries that are being


Vice Mayor Tasker: Address how you might handle Melbourne’s transportation needs as a

growing City. Do we need more or bigger roads? More public transportation? What kind of

a mix?

Chapman: You have to look for alternatives – bike paths, loop trolleys, things designed to

keep people in certain areas. You have a vast territory, so I don’t know that you can have a

one size fits all strategy. You are going to have to do a neighborhood based strategy. I

don’t think the answer is to build more and wider roads.

Council Member Thomas: How do you view Council’s relationship with your staff?

Chapman: Well, I think you answered part of the question in that it is my staff. Members of

staff are generally hired for their expertise in subject matter. In that regard, they are there to

assist you and help you to understand the various aspects of that subject matter. If you

have a specific question or concern, it ends up being best for you to talk to the subject

matter expert because sometimes things get lost in the translation. That does not extend to

you the opportunity to make assignments to people.

Council Member Goode: At this time do you have any perceived changes that you would

like to see?

Chapman: You would label me a quack if I told you things that I knew that I was going to do

already. If you are going to hire somebody who is going to be an instant expert, that is kind

of scary to me. I don’t see a need to change things for change sake.

Mayor Meehan: If you accept this position, how long do you expect to stay?

Chapman: When I find a place that I like, I have a tendency to stay. I anticipate that I would

like Melbourne.

Council Member Moore: How important is communication to you with your department

heads and what is your normal way to contact department heads?

Chapman: Communication is important. People have to know what’s going on and why as

close to real time as possible. I would contact them in all the ways that people do: email,

text message, call, visit. You name it, I do it.



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 6 of 25

Moore follow-up: If you visit, how would we have a record of it, if you had an issue?

Chapman: I think that if I anticipate it to be an issue, I would make it a more formal meeting.

Council Member Nowlin: As we look for ways to become more efficient, do you feel the

opinion of a front line employee can carry as much weight as a manager or supervisor?

Chapman: I think a front line employee’s opinions are important, depending on what the

issue is. But I also think it can only roll one way, otherwise you are going nowhere. I think

your question is, as much or equal?

Nowlin follow-up: If you are looking at a specific job and trying to figure out ways to be more

efficient, does the opinion of the guy that is actually doing the job mean as much as his

supervisor or department head?

Chapman: I think that the people closest to the job can add something to those kinds of

considerations, yes.

Council Member Jones: Talk to me about your strategies in the past of how you have kept

good relationships with surrounding municipalities and how you managed that relationship

when it was in the best interest of your city to go a separate way.

Chapman: We share a landfill with a neighboring community. We were co-owners, but they

were the active manager. We were unhappy with the way they were handling fiscal aspects

of it and we raised the issue. It took us about four years to resolve our differences. We got

what we believed to be our financial equity in the situation, but we’ve never really recovered

our relationship. That’s okay because the important thing in that regard was to represent

the interests of the taxpayers. We were talking about millions of dollars.

Vice Mayor Tasker: What is your strongest area of expertise and in what area of municipal

governance are you least experienced?

Chapman: My strongest is fiscal management and good budgeting. My least is CRAs

because I haven’t had a lot of experience with that in terms of how you utilize them.

Council Member Thomas: What part of being a city manager is your passion?

Chapman: That’s almost like asking who your favorite child is. I enjoy the job completely. I

like the sense of accomplishment, going through a project process and see it come to

fruition. I also enjoy the career development process, to develop new talent. You have to

invest in people along the way to make sure that public service continues on.

Council Member Goode: What do you do when your views on a situation are different than

the governing body as a whole?



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 7 of 25

Chapman: I think that there are inevitably times that there may be disagreements about

things. I think reasonable people can disagree and then we move on to the next thing. It

would be unwise of me to tell you that we’re always going to agree.

Mayor Meehan: Describe your experience with strategic planning.

Chapman: I am a believer in strategic planning. I think that it can serve an excellent

purpose. It ends up being a way to galvanize the policy making body, the administrative

body, the citizens, and the direction.

Meehan follow-up: Where did you have your meetings?

Chapman: Different locations. The place is less important than the person who is taking

you through the process. If you have a good skilled facilitator, the place is secondary.

Council Member Moore: How visible would you be to our community?

Chapman: I try to go to a lot of meetings. I’m usually gone three or four nights a week.

People assign value to a thing based on your attendance.

Council Member Nowlin: What do you think of our roads?

Chapman: The state roads are not as good as the City roads. I live in a place where there

are potholes. Your roads don’t have potholes. Relatively speaking, they are great.

Council Member Jones: At times there may be a difference of opinion between you and the

City Attorney. How do you navigate those waters to create an environment where it doesn’t

end up being an “us versus them” situation?

Chapman: We’re on the same team, we’re serving the same purpose, and we’re serving

the same clientele. There are times and occasions where you can disagree about things,

but you can’t ever lose sight of the fact that our citizens are first and foremost, and not get

our egos tied up in petty disagreements. I am committed to getting along with people.

Vice Mayor Tasker: What was your first impression when you first arrived in Melbourne?

Chapman: I really like the visual appearance of the community. I liked it immediately. After

I drove to the Downtown, I was getting very impressed and then I went and saw the harbor

and I was more impressed. That was when I decided that this was a place that I could live,

and I’m not an easy sell.

Council Member Thomas: Is there anything you would like to let us know about why we

should pick you as the City Manager?



NOVEMBER 30, 2012

Page 8 of 25

Chapman: I believe that I am the most experienced candidate. I can continue your City in

the direction that I believe you would all want it to go; we can form an impressive team.

Council Member Goode: I don’t like surprises. I don’t want to pick up the Florida Today or

watch local TV news show tonight and see something that went on in this City that Council

should have known about.

Chapman: I agree with you. Once in a while something falls through the cracks. I don’t like

surprises either; surprises are not a good thing.

Mayor Meehan: Would you make yourself available for two hours a week to see the public

on a first come, first served basis?

Chapman: Sure. I do maintain an open door policy.

Council Member Moore: On your tour this morning, would you give me a highlight of what

you found most impressive?

Chapman: I like the sun off the causeway, the water, the parks along the causeway, the

range of housing, the open space spread throughout the community, the investment you

have in your facilities, the planning you are involved in in terms of the future growth, and the

neighborhood feel.

Mayor Meehan noted the time (close to 11:15 a.m.).

Council Member Jones: Describe for me your philosophy about how you communicate with

the citizens.

Chapman: A newsletter, web site, strategic press releases, electronic message boards.

(He elaborated on benefits of each.)

Mayor Meehan thanked Mr. Chapman for his time and for participating in this process with

City Council. Mr. Chapman thanked Council for its time and for inviting him.



Current Version of GED Test to Expire at the End of the Year

By Natalia Arenas

– January 7th, 2013

GED Test and expire

If you’re thinking about getting your General Education Development (GED), you may want to do it soon. The current version of the GED test will be replaced with a new test on January 2, 2014 that is harder and more expensive.  Students are urged to take advantage of 2013 rates while they are still available.

The GED is the high school diploma equivalent exam that includes Reading, Writing, Math, Social Studies and Science.  In addition to costing an extra $50, the 2014 test will be entirely computer-based with multiple choice, short answer and essay questions. Keyboarding skills will be essential. Those who have started taking the test have until the end of 2013 to pass all 5 sessions or they will need to start over again in 2014 with the new GED test.

The Adult & Community Education department of the School District of Palm Beach County offers convenient GED studies online and on-site in 26 school locations and 10 satellite sites. “We use Adaptive Learning, which tailors classes to each individual’s needs,” said Dr. Jane Bravo, Program Consultant at Adult & Community Education. “Our one-on-one, individualized instruction methods help adults prepare for the GED test. We want students to succeed!”

In addition to offering classes and testing for the GED, the Adult & Community Education department offers FREE Career Pathways counseling for registered GED students and FREE Family Literacy support programs for GED students with children.

“By passing the GED test, you can open new paths and doors to college, better jobs, and personal satisfaction,” said Mary Barrett, Manager of Adult & Community Education. “GED test-takers must act now to finish and pass before the current test expires at the end of this year.”

Detailed information is available at or by calling 561-649-6010.
Spring 2013 GED classes begin January 14, 2013 – April 12, 2013

Registration for GED classes is $30 for Florida residents. The complete battery of GED tests costs $70 through 2013.



Although it’s a year away, Rend Lake College administrators and teachers are getting the word out about new General Educational Development (GED) test changes effective Jan. 2, 2014.

The advanced noting is to allow students who need to test for more sections of the current GED test. If the entire five-part test sections are not completed before 2014, those students scores will expire, and they will have to start over with the new 2014 test.

“We want to be sure that everyone is aware of this deadline. GED test-takers must act now to finish and pass before the current test expires. We don’t want any of our GED students to have to start over with the new test,” said Christina Hutcheson, director of Adult Education and Literacy at Rend Lake College.

Not only are community college administrators urging current GED students to get busy and finish their testing, so are GED officials.

“To anyone who has already started the GED test, your future is calling. By passing the GED test, you can answer that call. You owe it to yourself. Don’t miss the chance to turn one small step into your next big opportunity in life,” said Randy Trask, CEO of GED Testing Service.

Karla Tabing, director of Adult Basic Education at John A. Logan College, said administrators and teachers will begin in early 2013 of getting the word out to GED test-takers to get busy.

“We will start getting the word out in January and February, especially to those who have partially passed the test,” Tabing said.

JALC administers and prepares about 500 students for GED testing each academic year.

“Many students are not ready for the reading levels and math skills needed to pass the test. We have to build it up,” Tabing said.

Illinois does not require preparatory classes for students to take the GED. A single-day test for all five sections can last up to 7 1/2 hours. Students can test one section at a time if they need prior preparation or need to retest on particular sections. The five-test sections are science, social studies, math, language arts reading and language arts writing, Tabing said.

According to GED statistics, Illinois has a higher GED completion rate per year — slightly more than 90 percent of GED students — to the national average of 86-87 percent in 2010 and 2011. But Illinois GED students successfully completing all sections of the test on a single try at 64 percent is lower than the national average of 72 percent in 2010 and 2011.


Community College (SCC) has announced that the current version of the GED test will expire at the end of 2013. The current version, known as the 2002 Series GED test, will be replaced with the new 2014 GED test on January 2, 2014.

Those who have taken the 2002 Series GED test, but not passed all five parts, have until the end of 2013 to pass or they will need to start over again in 2014 with the new GED test in order to receive their high school credential. GED testing centers in North Carolina are encouraging adults to finish and pass this test before the deadline.

“The GED test opens doors to college, better jobs, the respect adults deserve, and the satisfaction of earning a high school credential,” said Andrea Steed, Chief GED Examiner at Stanly Community College. “So we want to be sure that everyone is aware of this deadline. GED test-takers must act now to finish and pass before the current test expires.”

“Support is available, right here in Stanly County and the surrounding area,” said Diane Cooker, Director of College and Career Readiness at Stanly Community College. “We can help adult learners get prepared to take the parts of the GED test they still need to pass. We want you to succeed!”

“We currently offer the GED Practice Tests and GED Official Tests once a month at Stanly Community College, both at the Albemarle campus and at the Crutchfield campus in Locust,” said Andrea Steed.  “As the deadline nears for the 2002 Series GED test, I plan to expand the testing schedule to accommodate more testers.  We have files on approximately 500 students who have taken at least one GED test, but have not finished.  Many students lack only one test, usually the Writing or the Math test, and we hope that they will come in to finish their GED high school credential.”

To encourage students to finish the GED Writing test, the College and Career  Readiness Department at Stanly Community College will offer a free seminar, “How to Write a GED Essay”  on October 1 and 3.

A few important tips you should know about testing at Stanly Community College before the end of 2013:

–        Registration deadline for GED® test-takers is November 4, 2013

–        Last day to take the current version of the GED® test at Stanly Community College is December 15, 2013

“To anyone who has already started the GED test, your future is calling. By passing the GED test, you can answer that call,” said Randy Trask, president and CEO of GED Testing Service. “You owe it to yourself. Don’t miss the chance to turn one small step into your next big opportunity in life.”

The GED test has opened doors to better jobs and college programs for more than 18 million graduates since 1942. Last year nearly 800,000 adults sat for the GED test, which is accepted by virtually all U.S. colleges and employers. As the creator of the official GED test, GED Testing Service has a responsibility to ensure that the program continues to be a reliable and valuable pathway to a better life for the millions of adults without a high school credential. Learn more at

Interested GED test-takers can find more information at or by calling Stanly Community College at 704-991-0174.


Upcoming changes impact GED testing

October 13, 2012

By ANDREA JOHNSON – Staff Writer ( , Minot Daily News

Save | Post a comment|//

Minot Adult Learning Center director Jennifer Kraft wants to alert people who have taken GED classes in the past few years but have not completed testing of some upcoming changes in the test that could impact their ability to earn the GED certification.

The GED test contains five parts that can be taken separately, but must all be passed to receive a high school credential. Many people have passed some parts of the test but not all and have not completed the exam and earned their GED. The current version of the GED test the 2002 Series GED Test will expire at the end of 2013, along with all of those incomplete test scores. That means anyone who has not completed all of the GED tests by the end of 2013 would have to start taking classes all over again and take the new 2014 GED test.

“More than a million adults have started but not finished the current GED test,” said Nicole Chestang, executive vice president of the GED Testing Service, in a press release. “As a nation, we cannot afford to let millions of working-aged adults miss this opportunity to complete and pass the GED test, opening doors to college, training, and better jobs.”

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for (z=1;zThe Minot Adult Learning Center offers classes to help people get their GED and also offers testing. Kraft encourages people who started the classes at some point to complete their work and take all five parts of the test by the end of next year so they can get their GED. The Adult Learning Center is located at 1609 4th Ave. NW. For more information, call 857-4488 or look at the center’s website at (

According to the press release, there are resources available to GED test-takers in every state. Help includes classes, online preparation or assistance in getting through the process. There is also information online at (

The new 2014 GED test will be based on emerging national and state standards. It will offer dual performance levels where test-takers can earn the high school equivalency credential as well as additional endorsement that indicates career- and college-readiness. The test will be delivered solely on computer and offered only in official testing centers.


“College is Possible” Event Promises Excellent Resources to High Schools Students

Posted by: Natalia Arenas

– January 16th, 2013

Palm Beach State College is hosting a FREE college planning day for high school juniors, seniors, and their parents to help them realize that College is Possible.

When? Saturday, February 23, 2013 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Where? Palm Beach State College – Lake Worth Campus Duncan Theater. 4200 S. Congress Ave. West Palm Beach, FL 33461.


Students MUST pre-register at

Breakout sessions include transitioning to college, college admissions, how to pay for college, choosing the right college program, steps for success, academic marketplace among others. In addition, parents can attend sessions in Spanish and Haitian-Creole.


“College is Possible” Flyer

Palm Beach State College in collaboration with ASPIRA of Florida and the School District of Palm Beach County invite to all high school juniors and seniors to a college exposition to provide students and their families with information about the value of a college education, resources and valuable tips to help them pursue their post-secondary studies.

For more information contact Susy Martinez-White at (561) 868-3807 or via email at




Palm Beach County has its first mayor.


Commission chairman Steven Abrams was elected mayor in a 4-3 decision Tuesday.

Abrams said the decision is a title change, but he hopes the title will help the county.

“It increases the leaders’ visibility in the county, along with other county mayors in South Florida,” said Abrams. “It gives us additional clout when we go to Tallahassee and Washington to ask for funding and programs.”

The title change is not expected to cost taxpayers.

People living in the county will never vote on this position. It will be appointed within the commission, and the title will rotate on an annual basis

Read more:


“xxxx.,” said xxx the CFO.

Xxxx,’aits often gift giving here.


Dan lansman, president

Unbelieve suerpeiose.

Broansodn sadui .buying

Bmii co

In the woron where his coworkers




A  Delray Beach minister who is a registered sexual offender has been arrested for alleged sex crime xxxinvolving children, the Delray Beach Tribune has learned.

Van Cleckley, 50, was charged with failure of a sex offender to properly register email or an instant message screen name. He was booked in the Palm Beach County Jail.




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Food drive – family that needs



According to his arrest report, Cleckley, who also goes by xxx, texted and attempted to arrange a sexual encounter with a person he thought was a boy. The person, however, was an undercover Boynton Beach police officer working online.


Cleckley, who goes by Vandairy Fatel Cleckley, Vondairy Fatel Cleckley and Vandairy F Cleckley is the minister at xxx. He is married and is the father of three or four children. Cleckley is the son of former pastor xxx Cleckley.

According to the arrest report, a person with the screen name “Top here” sent the officer and instant message on Nov. 20. They exchanged greetings and “Top here” said “So sup? u wanna chill?”

The officer wrote “maybe.” Over the next six days the two texted, with “Top here” sending a photo of his penis and asking for an explicit photo in return. “’Top here’ wanted to meet me and have sex in a bedroom or in his car,” the officer wrote in the arrest report.

“Maybe,” the officer wrote. The two texted , with Over the next six days “Top here” sending a photo of his penis and asking for an explicit photo in return. “’Top here’ wanted to meet me and have sex in a bedroom or in his car,” the officer wrote in the arrest report.





The officer working undercover online was contacted through an instant message Nov. 20 from a person with the screen name “Top here.” After exchanging greetings, “Top here” said “So sup? … u wanna chill?” The officer wrote “maybe.” Over the next six days the two texted, with “Top here” sending a photo of his penis and asking for an explicit photo in return. “’Top here’ wanted to meet me and have sex in a bedroom or in his car,” the officer wrote in the arrest report.








Posted: 11:12 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012

Delray Beach sex offender accused of trying to meet with person he thought was a boy, but was really Boynton Beach cop

  •   4  17  1  39


View Larger



Search for sex offenders in your neighborhood

By Sonja Isger

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

A 50-year-old sex offender is back in jail after police say he texted and attempted to arrange a sexual encounter with a person he thought was a boy, but was actually a Boynton Beach police officer.

Vandairy Fatel Cleckley of Delray Beach is charged with failure of a sex offender to properly register email or an instant message screen name, according to his arrest report.

A Boynton officer working undercover online was contacted through an instant message Nov. 20 from a person with the screen name “Top here.” After exchanging greetings, “Top here” said “So sup? … u wanna chill?” The officer wrote “maybe.” Over the next six days the two texted, with “Top here” sending a photo of his penis and asking for an explicit photo in return. “’Top here’ wanted to meet me and have sex in a bedroom or in his car,” the officer wrote in the arrest report.

The two arranged to meet and it was Cleckley who arrived at that meeting Tuesday. The officer discovered Cleckley is a convicted sex offender who is required to notify authorities about where he is living as well as his email address and electronic screen names.

After authorities read Cleckley his rights, they said he admitted that “Top here” is his instant message screen name and that he did not register it with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.” Cleckley said he’d been instant messaging using his iPad.

lished unless a fingerprint comparison is made



Dozens of Lancaster County students from public and private schools also are headed to Washington for the historic event, which likely will be the most profound experience of their lives to this point.

Read more:



DELRAY BEACH – A local mentoring program is using an innovative tool to raise money for a group of underserved teens to go to the presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C.

KOP, formerly known as the Knights of Pythagoras Mentoring Network, aims to raise $17,000 on the fundraising website Crowdtilt to pay for transportation, food, lodging and winter clothing for at least 50 deserving students in Palm Beach County

“We need to give these kids this opportunity,” said C. Ron Allen, president of the 20-year old mentoring group. “The last inauguration, we were only able to take a few students. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for them and we want to make this a lifetime experience for these students.”

Five students from each of the public schools Delray Beach will be awarded scholarships to attend the event along with KOP, Allen said.

Each principal will be asked to select the students to receive the scholarships.

“As someone who attended the last inauguration of President Barack Obama, it was meaningful to me as an adult. Imagine what it would be for a youngster,” Allen said. “This will likely will be the most profound experience of their lives to this point.”

“Allen encourages people to give whatever they can buy going to Tilt .,  logging in and creating a password on the secured site at xxx.  The organizers only have a month to get the money together.

The South Florida-based mentoring program promotes and enhances the development of underserved youth ages 7-17, by instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging and influence. The organization provides a safe place to learn and grow – all while having fun. It is the place where great futures are started each and every day.

You may also learn more about KOP at or call 561-665-0151.


I think since its one popportunity  this is the first oppotuniive been offered so I simce the president wont be elected in another four years . I would  like to go to all I can.

7th grader engleson st. Louis, 13, village


“I would like to go I want ot experience what its like, it will be crold, there will me millions of people watching

Derrick glenn, 12, 6th grade.



The Knights of Pythagoras Mentoring Network has been offering that and more since 1991. Our programs and services promote and enhance the development of boys and girls, ages 7 to 17, by instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging and influence. We also develop positive relationships that have a direct and lasting effect on the lives of young people. The Knights of Pythagoras Mentoring Network provides a safe place to learn and grow – all while having fun. It is the place where great futures are started each and every day.



Shereen Oca
Staff Writer – Gazette Newspapers Long Beach California | 0 comments

A Millikan High School junior soon will journey to the nation’s Capitol to witness a momentous transition in the nation’s history — Barack Obama’s inauguration.

Earlier this year, 16-year-old Jaclyn Casem was invited to attend the Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference in Washington, D.C.

Despite encountering some difficulty raising the money needed for traveling expenses and tuition, Casem will join other high-schoolers next month as they take part in this historic event.

With the help from community members, friends and family, about half of the $2,400 tuition was raised from donations, Casem said.

She then paid for the other half with money she earned from a summer job at California State University, Long Beach, she added.

Now, the honors student is preparing to make her first cross-country trip, a trek she will make with her mother.

“I’m hoping to learn about the whole process about the inauguration and the difference between each president and their platforms,” Casem said.

In addition to attending the inauguration on Jan. 20, Casem and her fellow students will have the opportunity to meet with politicians and White House officials — former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and Gen. Colin Powell are two keynote speakers Casem said she is most looking forward to — and join in on the celebration at a Black-Tie Gala Inaugural Ball.

“I know that she is going to have the experience of her lifetime,” her mother, Linda, said. “It’ll be exciting to see a change in her face after I pick her up. The enthusiasm is just going to be visible.”

At Millikan, Casem is enrolled in the Questioning, Understanding, Engaging, Success through Technology (QUEST) honors program.

She has been a member of the school’s dance team for three years, in addition to performing with the Dance Company of Long Beach.

As far as possible professions, the junior said she’s considering law and political science as future subjects of study in college.

“I don’t really know much about it, but the idea of it sounds interesting,” she said. “I am a good debater, and I can be really persuasive, which are good attributes to becoming a lawyer.”

Considering the number of politician attorneys in Washington, D.C., she likely will pick up some tips on the subject during the inauguration’s festivities.

A Millikan High School junior soon will journey to the nation’s Capitol to witness a momentous transition in the nation’s history — Barack Obama’s inauguration.

Earlier this year, 16-year-old Jaclyn Casem was invited to attend the Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference in Washington, D.C.

Despite encountering some difficulty raising the money needed for traveling expenses and tuition, Casem will join other high-schoolers next month as they take part in this historic event.

With the help from community members, friends and family, about half of the $2,400 tuition was raised from donations, Casem said.

She then paid for the other half with money she earned from a summer job at California State University, Long Beach, she added.

Now, the honors student is preparing to make her first cross-country trip, a trek she will make with her mother.

“I’m hoping to learn about the whole process about the inauguration and the difference between each president and their platforms,” Casem said.

In addition to attending the inauguration on Jan. 20, Casem and her fellow students will have the opportunity to meet with politicians and White House officials — former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and Gen. Colin Powell are two keynote speakers Casem said she is most looking forward to — and join in on the celebration at a Black-Tie Gala Inaugural Ball.

“I know that she is going to have the experience of her lifetime,” her mother, Linda, said. “It’ll be exciting to see a change in her face after I pick her up. The enthusiasm is just going to be visible.”

At Millikan, Casem is enrolled in the Questioning, Understanding, Engaging, Success through Technology (QUEST) honors program.

She has been a member of the school’s dance team for three years, in addition to performing with the Dance Company of Long Beach.

As far as possible professions, the junior said she’s considering law and political science as future subjects of study in college.

“I don’t really know much about it, but the idea of it sounds interesting,” she said. “I am a good debater, and I can be really persuasive, which are good attributes to becoming a lawyer.”

Considering the number of politician attorneys in Washington, D.C., she likely will pick up some tips on the subject during the inauguration’s festivities.

Gibson 6th grader tapped to attend 2013 inauguration



Gibson 6th grader going to presidential inauguration

Bailee Theriot, who will be attending the fifth grade this year at Greenwood Elementary, will be the only student from Terrebonne Parish to attend the presidential inauguration January 2013. Bailee was selected for the trip through the People to People Leadership Ambassador Program.

Gibson 6th grader tapped to attend 2013 inauguration By CLAUDETTE OLIVIER Staff Writer Tri-Parish Times | 0 comments

Former Gibson Elementary student Bailee Theriot will be the only student from Terrebonne Parish to attend the presidential inauguration in January 2013.

“I am so excited about the trip,” Bailee said. “I freaked out when I learned I was going. When I showed the letter to my principal, she said ‘You are one of the best students at the entire school.’ She was thrilled that I was nominated.”

Theriot’s former principal Monica Breaux nominated the up-and-coming fifth-grader, daughter of Kristina Boulerisse of Gibson, for the trip last fall. The People to People Leadership Ambassador Program, which works to provide educational travel opportunities for students from around the world, will host the trip.

“The program was started by President Eisenhower,” Boulerisse said. “It gives children the opportunity to meet other children from different countries and different nationalities and helps to send children from here to other countries for one month during the summer.”

This marks the first time Gibson Elementary was asked to nominate a student for the trip. According to Bailee, Breaux was ecstatic about having one of her students honored with the opportunity.

“I received the letter in the mail last fall and I nominated several students,” the principal said. “Bailee is a high achiever – she has high expectations for herself and peers. She is a leader and is always interested in learning about new things.”

In addition to volunteer work and extracurricular activities, Bailee also earns excellent grades.

“I hope the trip shows her how far she can go in life and inspire her to reach for high things,” Breaux said. “Most children her age will never get this experience. I hope she enjoys the trip and learns from it. It is the experience of a lifetime for someone of such a young age and she has had amazing support from her family. She will achieve a lot and I think this will encourage and motivate her even further in her life.”

Boulerisse will accompany her daughter on the flight to Washington, D.C., and, when they arrive in the nation’s capitol, Bailee will spend the rest of the trip with the People to People staff.

“They will be having breakfast at the Smithsonian Institute and will get to take a picture on the front steps of the White House,” Boulerisse said. “This is a major accomplishment for Bailee.

“She was selected to go on a trip to Canada last summer, but we couldn’t afford it,” she said. “The group would have toured Canada. All the trips People to People organize are educational.”

Now a Greenwood Middle fifth-grader, Bailee said her favorite subject is math. She’ll be brushing up on her civics, though.

“I don’t know who I want to win the election because I don’t know who is running,” Bailee admitted.



DELRAY BEACH – A local mentoring program is using an innovative tool to raise money for a group of underserved teens to go to the presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C.

KOP, formerly known as the Knights of Pythagoras Mentoring Network, aims to raise $17,000 on the fundraising website to pay for transportation, food, lodging and winter clothing for at least 50 deserving students in Palm Beach County

“We need to give these kids this opportunity,” said C. Ron Allen, president of the 20-year old mentoring group. “The last inauguration, we were only able to take a few students. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for them and we want to make this a lifetime experience for these students.”

Five students from each of the public schools Delray Beach will be awarded scholarships to attend the event along with KOP, Allen said.

Each principal will be asked to select the students to receive the scholarships.

“As someone who attended the last inauguration of President Barack Obama, it was meaningful to me as an adult. Imagine what it would be for a youngster,” Allen said.

“Allen encourages people to give whatever they can buy going to Tilt .,  logging in and creating a password on the secured site at xxx.  The organizers only have a month to get the money together.

The South Florida-based mentoring program promotes and enhances the development of underserved youth ages 7-17, by instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging and influence. The organization provides a safe place to learn and grow – all while having fun. It is the place where great futures are started each and every day.

You may also learn more about KOP at or call 561-665-0151.


Students here ready for inauguration

Dozens from public and private schools are headed to the historic event.

Lancaster New Era

Staff Writer

Barack Obama’s mission in some ways mirrors theirs — one of peace and education and reaching out to others who need help.

Seven members of Ephrata High School’s Youth Peace Council will head to Washington early Tuesday morning to see Barack Obama become the 44th president of the United States.

“It was nice to see a candidate who is pushing for change,” council President Chris Accardo, a senior at Ephrata, said. “It’s also good to see a minority come into power. It kind of shows us how we are equalizing as a culture.”

The Ephrata teens are not the only ones making the journey south for the big day.

Dozens of Lancaster County students from public and private schools also are headed to Washington for the historic event, which likely will be the most profound experience of their lives to this point.

The reason they are going varies.

Ephrata’s students are going for the day. (There is no school on Tuesday.) They’ve asked for tickets to the inauguration, but are still waiting to find out if they will get them.

If not, they will revel in the festivities on the periphery, all while sporting winter layers and matching bandannas so they can stay warm and find each other in the crowd.

Eli Mudrick, a senior from Hempfield High School who plays second trumpet/bugle, will be among 150 musicians who will march with the Cadets Drum Corps in the parade.

Several local students were invited to attend the Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference as alumni of  the Junior National Young Leaders Conference.

These lucky students will spend nearly a week in the capital. They will get to hear former Vice President Al Gore and former Secretary of State Colin Powell. Another keynote speaker for their trip will be Erik Weihenmayer, a blind man who has climbed the world’s tallest mountains.

In addition, these young students have reserved seats for the inauguration, and they will attend a formal ball.

“I’m very excited,” said Demi Greenawalt, a freshman at Penn Manor High School who is attending the youth conference. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I’m ready to experience it.”

Another youth conference participant is Tara Bennett, 11, a sixth-grader at Donegal Middle School.

“It’s history,” she said. “This is our first African-American president; it’s a big thing.”

Both girls have their dresses for the ball.

Tara said she’s not sure how well she’s going to manage heels.

“I’ve never worn heels before,” she said.

Parents of the students who are attending the youth conference pay  more than $2,000 for the trip.

Ten pupils from the School District of Lancaster are heading to the inaugural festivities. These include three from Wheatland Middle School, and one from Ross Elementary School.

At 5:30 Tuesday morning, six members of the Black Student Union at McCaskey High School will board a bus  and make the journey to Washington.

The buses are being sponsored by the Lancaster Young Democrats. The tickets were $40.

“For most of them, this is probably one of the most monumental moments in their lives,” said Angela Fry, the club’s adviser, who is also going.

The Black Student Union is open to all students, regardless of race. Its mission is to remind their peers of their civic duties inside school and in the community, Fry said.

Attending the inauguration seemed like a natural fit for the club, she said.

JOHN SENTS – Staff Writer’);”>Enlarge Photo

ELKO – Most American teenagers don’t get to go to Washington, D.C., for presidential inaugurations. As luck would have it, two Elko siblings will be there to watch Barack Obama sworn in as the nation’s 44th president.

Elko High School students Erin and Cameron Gillies participate in student programs organizing Washington visits for the event. Neither of the two were old enough to vote this month, but both said they are excited to take part in the inauguration.

“I thought it would be cool to be a part of history,” Cameron, 14, said. “Not everyone gets a chance to do this.”

He is going to Washington for the better part of a week as part of the National Youth Leaders Conference program. He previously traveled to Washington and Boston through the program and was invited to the presidential inauguration last spring.

Erin, 16, will participate in the inauguration and a week of activities as part of the People to People student leadership program. The program is also organizing a Global Youth Forum in Denver, but she chose to attend the inauguration event instead.

“I thought, this is more of a once in a lifetime opportunity,” she said. “Not many teenagers can say they’ve seen the president sworn in.”

The siblings will fly out together Jan. 17 and stay with their respective programs. Cameron will arrive back in Elko one day before his sister.

For his part, Cameron will have the opportunity to interact with White House officials, congressional staff members, political experts and others, including seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, who will be a leader of his student delegation.

In addition to the inauguration, his group will check out the inaugural parade, attend a black-tie gala inaugural ball and visit historic sites and monuments in the nation’s capital.

Erin said her political views are fairly moderate. She supported Barack Obama and was excited to see him win. Her brother said he doesn’t identify with any political party.

Erin’s interest in politics grew during a government course she took last year taught by Cody Krenka. Her class organized an activity to watch the primary election at their school. The class also researched potential vice presidential candidates and picked Sarah Palin as one of the top three candidates for the 2008 Republican ticket well before she was announced as Sen. John McCain’s running mate.

She hopes to study international relations in college and to work for a non-governmental organization or the United Nations after school. One of the major world issues she is interested in is finding solutions for Afghanistan.

Stop Making Excuses!

Dr.SynesioBy: Dr. Synesio Lyra, Jr.

It’s very easy for anyone to make excuses; what can be difficult is to justify all the excuses. Some are legitimate and can be reasonably defended; their majority, however, is simply made to save face and exonerate one of any responsibility!

Honesty is becoming less and less a factor in human interactions and relationships and one of the ways its absence is noticed, is precisely in the kind excuses that people offer. Society, unfortunately, increasingly suffers on that account!

Many persons don’t take personal responsibility seriously enough. At least, they define differently what they consider to be responsibility and what not. They take a very casual view of what society in general still acknowledges regarding responsibility, based on the dictionary’s definition of that word.

There are also those who easily find defenders of one’s inability to keep commitments, and to act responsibly on other issues. I’ve heard an unforgettable excuse made on behalf of somebody else, to the effect that “he is wired differently” and this explains why he acts in this or that way, according to that faulty assessment!

Excuses can be fully justifiable in several situations, if based on reality and responsibility. It remains a reasonable recourse for the healthy functioning of individuals in society. That’s why its abuses are never received favorably, especially when truth is being unnecessarily sacrificed and violated!

By saying “stop making excuses” I’m not trying to eliminate this possibility from human interactions but simply addressing the masking of truth which most frequently is what animates the offer of those kinds of excuses.

Be courageous at all times, regardless of the consequences. The only valid excuse is the one that is made truthfully. Those who act in this fashion will retain their reputation even if some disappointment may also occur on the part of those affected by the excuse. People are ready to forgive as they realize that nobody is perfect.

Inventing an unjustifiable excuse, based on distortions of the truth, not only leaves a bad taste in one’s mouth, but causes one’s credibility to suffer damage – sometimes irremediable! You don’t desire that, do you?



Source Article from

NBA betting tips: who is looking like a good bet for the coming season?

The 2013/14 season of the NBA Championship is due to start in around two months time, but the basketball betting on it has already started. In particular, people are putting down bets on which team they think will win the title next season. This kind of outright bet is always popular with sports betting fans, but it is also quite risky before the season has started. This is because at least one of the favourites usually fails to deliver once the action is underway. That isn’t likely to stop anyone though, so what teams could represent a good gamble for the title this year?

Well unsurprisingly the defending champions the Miami Heat are once again the firm favourites, and some of the bookies are putting them at just 2/1 to hold on to their crown. At these odds, and with the likes of LeBron James and Chris Bosh in their line-up, the Heat will certainly attract a lot of the bets – but not every punter wants to bet on the favourites. Other sides that could be worth consideration include Oklahoma City Thunder at 13/2, San Antonio Spurs at 12/1 and Chicago Bulls at 14/1. There is always the option of waiting to see how each side performs when the season starts, as casino games like Slam Dunk are there as a handy alternative.

This basketball slots game has five reels and nine pay lines, which is pretty standard, but these are the only run of the mill elements to Slam Dunk, which can be found at Instead of regular fruit icons on the reels, you get the likes of basketball players, sneakers, cheerleaders and basketballs – as well as a number 23 jersey as the wild icon. All NBA fans will know this as Michael Jordan’s number, and here it increases the payout chances by filling in for any missing icons needed to complete your winning reel. All this goes to make Slam Dunk a game that lives up to its name for anyone who gets a kick out of basketball and gambling.

Plane Lands Safely at PBIA With Engine Problems

WEST PALM BEACH — A commercial airplane landed safely at Palm Beach International Airport with engine problems Monday afternoon, the Delray Beach Tribune has learned.

The Southwest Airlines  737 flight reported that an engine was out, according to Palm Beach County Fire Rescue.

Ninety-one people were on board the plane when it landed shortly after 1:15 p.m.

No injuries were reported.

Communication is the Best Defense in the Fight Against Bullying

By Detective Daniella Quinn


It has to be a very painful and scary thing for parents to learn that their child is being bullied. As parents, you may find yourself pondering the tough question: Do I intervene on behalf of my children or hold back and let them work out the problem themselves?

DBT Bullying 1At times, it wasn’t until after the fact that parents learned their children were being bullied. And I think that’s probably true more often than not —  kids go through these things and never tell their parents.

One in 10 teens tells parents if they have been a cyber bully victim. Less than one in five cyber bullying incidents are reported to law enforcement.

Bullying is a repeated and hurtful act of someone intimidating or hurting another person.  This behavior includes taunting, teasing, spreading rumors, social exclusion, hitting or pushing, taking or breaking another’s property. Cyber bullying is online harassment to include sending mean texts, emails or instant messages, posting nasty pictures or messages about someone else.

In this fight against bullying and cyber bullying, communication is key. Parents should:

  • Talk to your children and explain to them what bullying is and that it is unacceptable
  • Teach your children about how to resolve conflicts peacefully and accepting everyone’s differences
  • Always keep open communication with your children; know their friends and most of all know their concerns
  • Encourage your children to not be afraid and report, to any trusted adult, any bullying that occurs to them or even if they see it occurring to someone else.  Let’s get the children to begin to speak up for one another and help their peers
  • Ask questions daily about what your children are doing in school; monitor their Internet and cell phone activity, set rules and guidelines for its use.  As a parent of a child using social media, educate yourself about the Internet and its various forms of communication and use parental controls.  Importantly, take the time to look at the social media conversations, the pictures/videos on your child’s profile page and make sure your children are aware of the consequences of any negative posts or comments.

There are, of course, a million forms of bullying, and sometimes the worst thing adults can do is look the other way. We’ve seen the worst cases where teenagers have used social media in horrible ways that has resulted in their peers committing suicide.

Though bullying is as old as classrooms, it is only in recently that states have moved to address this issue with legislation. Previously, this was simply the domain of schools. In 1999, only Georgia had an anti-bullying law. Today, every state except Montana does. In the past 14 years, states have enacted nearly 130 anti-bullying measures, half of them since 2008.

Spurred partly by the Columbine shootings in 1999, when it was reportedly that the suspects had been bullied, states began rapidly addressing bullying, according to a 2011 U.S. Department of Education report. Victims in 18 states now have legal recourse either from schools that fail to address the issue or from the bullies themselves.

The hopeful news is that in my lifetime, schools and law enforcement have become much more aware of the dangers of bullying and the need to be proactive. The bad news is it is still not enough.

Remember that bullying is not only wrong; it’s a crime and should be reported right away. Now is the time to stand up against bullying. Let’s continue to work together to keep the children in our community safe.




4 Injured in Collision With bus

 DELRAY BEACH – Four people were injured in a chain crash involving a sports utility vehicle, a pickup truck and a Palm Tran bus Tuesday morning, authorities said.

The crash occurred shortly before 10 a.m. along Federal Highway north of Linton Boulevard.

Delray Beach Fire-Rescue officials say that the SUV rear-ended the large pickup truck causing it to crash into the rear of a Palm Tran bus.

The drivers of both the SUV and pickup truck and two passengers on the bus were transported to local hospitals in stable condition, Fire-Rescue personnel said.