Child and Adolescent Psychologist Dr. Reyna Gilmore to be Featured on CUTV News Radio

CINCINNATI, OHIO, UNITED STATES, January 24, 2018 /EINPresswire.com/ — Our children are living in a scary, crazy, chaotic world that is only growing more and more difficult to navigate.

Children can struggle with the same mental health issues as adults: depression, anxiety, psychotic disorders, bipolar disorder, ADHD, disruptive disorders, trauma, and even thoughts of suicide.

Dr. Reyna Gilmore is a child and adolescent psychiatrist who works with children who have mental health issues as well as their families to more successfully navigate their experience.

“I help these children navigate their challenges, so they can be the most successful that they can be,” says Dr. Gilmore.

Dr. Gilmore was inspired to pursue child psychiatry through her own personal experience with mental health issues with family and friends.

“I struggled with that as a child myself, so do a lot of other kids,” says Dr. Gilmore. “I realized children are impressionable and I can make more of a difference in starting at an early age with how they can deal with the stress areas in their lives.”

Dr. Gilmore describes herself as someone who’s willing to think outside of the box for solutions and go above and beyond for the children and their families. If she needs to dance with children or sing with them or play with them, that’s what she’ll do.

“I’m not your average doctor. I am really passionate about what I do. I try to look at the kids and their families as if they were my own. I try to find something about each case that I work with that I can relate to, so I can better connect with them. I look at each individual case and do not try to do cookie-cutter medicine.”

Dr. Gilmore has a special passion for suicide prevention.

“People tell you to leave work at work and once you go home and be home. The type of person I am and the field that I work in, it’s very difficult to do so. As much as you try to do that, there are certain situations that stick with you. And the fact that I try and connected with the people that I see, whether it be for one time or for a year. It affects me when I connect with them, but it makes me a more genuine person in what I’m doing. So I’m most proud of the impact that I have made on the lives of others.

CUTV News Radio will feature Dr. Reyna Gilmore in an interview with Doug Llewelyn on January 26th at 12pm EST.

Listen to the show on BlogTalkRadio.

If you have a question for our guest, call (347) 996-3389.

Lou Ceparano
CUTV News
(631) 850-3314
email us here

RankTribe™ Black Business Directory News – Arts & Entertainment

Politics | Gov. Baker Delivers 3rd State of the Commonwealth Address

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Charlie Baker

Governor Charlie Baker delivered his third State of the Commonwealth address on Tuesday night from the House Chamber of the Massachusetts State House.

Read the Speech Below: 

“Mr. Speaker. Madame President. Congressman Neal. Fellow Constitutional Officers. Members of the Governor’s Council. Mr. Chief Justice and Members of the Judiciary.    Members of the Cabinet and my Administration. Sheriffs. District Attorneys. Mayors. Local Officials. Reverend Clergy. Distinguished Guests.

Members of my family that are here this evening – Andy, Kristen and William. 

My children, AJ and Caroline. And my wife Lauren. The love of my life for the past 30 years and an outstanding deeply committed First Lady.

And to my Fellow Citizens.

When Lieutenant Governor Polito and I began this journey three years ago, we set out to create a state government that worked well for the people who needed it most, and would be as creative, thrifty and hard-working as the people of Massachusetts.

And while much remains to be done, with your help, we’ve made great progress toward these objectives.

We began with a $1 billion structural budget deficit.  Today, we’ve reduced that deficit to less than $100 million without raising taxes.

We began with 1,500 homeless families stuck in hotels and motels, isolated from their support systems.  Today there are fewer than 60 families that’s a 95% reduction.

We began with a Department of Children and Families in free fall.  Today 99% of its social workers are licensed with the lowest caseloads they’ve had in years – and clinical teams to support their work.

We began with a Health Connector that was, by all accounts, a mess.  Today it just finished its third consecutive positive open enrollment. Providing more than 240,000 working families with affordable health care coverage.

We began with a state hospital in Bridgewater that for decades was beset by a series of terrible tragedies – yet nothing was done.  Today, with the help and support of the legislature and many others, Bridgewater State Hospital is a completely different place.  And families who never expected anything to get better finally have hope.

We began in the midst of an opioid crisis in which deaths, overdoses and prescriptions had been growing by double digits for more than a decade.  It was the worst case of negative momentum I’d ever seen. Today, with your help and support, we’ve reduced opioid prescribing by 29%. And overdose deaths have dropped for the first time in over a decade by 10%.

And we’ve made significant progress in many other vital areas that directly influence the quality of life for everyone here in the Commonwealth.

For the first time, we’re directing capital grants to vocational-technical schools to upgrade equipment and expand popular programs.   Providing students with real-world skills and experience and employers with job-ready workers.

Public/private partnerships with colleges, researchers, businesses and the federal government in materials, advanced manufacturing, robotics and digital health are incubating the next generation of great commercial clusters.

Partnerships with our colleagues in local government and the private sector have translated into billions of dollars of downtown and economic development projects.  Creating thousands of jobs and preserving and creating thousands of units of affordable and workforce housing.

Working with you we’ve allocated more than $700 million in local road and bridge funding – the largest investment in years.  And another $3.6 billion has been spent on hundreds of road re-surfacing and improvement projects.

All in we’ve repaired or replaced 80 bridges and paved enough miles of roadway to crisscross the Commonwealth five times.

We’ve also built on this state’s historic bipartisan commitment to veterans.  We enhanced the benefit for Gold Star Families. Enacted the Home Act. Created a tax credit for small businesses that hire veterans.  And committed the funding necessary to rebuild the Chelsea Soldier’s Home.

To celebrate this milestone we’re joined tonight by U.S. Navy Veteran Tom Miller who lives at the Chelsea Soldiers Home, Director of Nursing Debbie Antonelli and Superintendent Cheryl Poppe. God bless you all.

As you all know, our public transportation system collapsed during the brutal winter of 2015.

But three years later the T is investing hundreds of millions of dollars more on upgrading its core infrastructure than it has in years, modernizing its operations and rescuing projects like the Green Line Extension.

And after more than three decades of lip service, we’re going to make commuter rail from Fall River and New Bedford to Boston a reality.

There is more to do on the T.  Much more.  But for the first time in years the plan to modernize the system is in place and moving forward.  Fixing decades of neglect doesn’t happen overnight.  But make no mistake we will deliver the public transit system the people of this Commonwealth deserve.

Economically, we’re hitting on all cylinders.

In 2017 we had more people working than at any time in state history. Our economy has added 180,000 new jobs since we took office. And best of all, the number of people looking for work has dropped in every county over the past three years in most cases by more than 35%.

The progress we’ve made together has been noticed and it should be.

Bloomberg ranked Massachusetts #1 in innovation for the past two years. 

The United Health Foundation called Massachusetts the healthiest state in the nation.

In a 2014 national survey, Thumbtack gave Massachusetts a D+ for small business friendliness.  Last year, they gave us an A-.

U.S. News and World Report ranked Massachusetts the best state in the nation in which to live, work and raise a family.

And for the 3rd time in four years – the New England Patriots are going to the Super Bowl! 

So I can stand here and say without question — the state of our Commonwealth is strong!

A strong Commonwealth is built on a foundation of strong communities.  Friendly, welcoming, bustling neighborhoods and downtowns.   Great schools.   Safe, accessible, attractive places to play.   Growing local economies.   And a belief that anything is possible.

“That’s why for the past three years, Karyn Polito and I have focused so much on strengthening communities.

Our first Executive Order created a new partnership between state and local government. 

Funded by the Legislature and overseen by the Lieutenant Governor,  330 cities and towns have joined this partnership.  Adopting more than 800 best practices in everything from financial planning to regional collaboration.  This is how government should work.

When we took office, more than 50 communities in Western Massachusetts didn’t have access to high-speed internet services.

I first heard about this when a local official told me horror stories about what life was like without it.  He mentioned students like Sarah Beckwith from Mt. Washington who often did her homework sitting in the car next to the library after hours – so she could get access to their wifi.

Sarah is a straight A student at Mt. Everett Regional High School, but c’mon.  The parking lot?

Here’s the good news. Mt. Washington now has high speed internet and Sarah is applying online to colleges using the wifi in her home.

And the vast majority of the communities that had none when we took office either have it now or have plans to install it.  Thanks to this Legislature’s help with funding for the build out they will all have this must have infrastructure over the next two years.

Our program to plant 10,000 trees in Gateway Cities has been a success and we look forward to planting 10,000 more.  And by the fall of 2018, 71% of all streetlights will be LEDs. Saving communities millions of dollars and cutting power usage by 60%.

To support our coastal communities, we revived the Seaport Council, established a statewide task force to study resiliency and adaptability and have begun making millions of dollars in strategic investments to preserve protect and properly use this critical natural resource.

With the help of community leaders and our legislative colleagues we instituted programs for small bridge maintenance and repair, made major investments in bike paths and walking trails.  And delivered predictable investments in unrestricted local aid and municipal infrastructure.

We’ve also worked together with our colleagues in local government to welcome fellow citizens from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands after the devastating hurricanes. 

State agencies have worked together to help thousands of families relocate here and find housing, schools and jobs. Our budget will include additional aide for the communities hosting these families. 

Over 20 years ago we committed to what became a long-standing bipartisan investment in K-12 education, high standards, equitable funding and other major reforms. It worked. 

We continue to finish first for the tenth year in a row – on the National Assessment of Educational Progress Exam in both English and Math. We have the highest four-year graduation rate and lowest dropout rate we’ve ever had.

To continue that momentum we’re funding K-12 education at the highest level in history, more than $4.7 billion.  Tomorrow’s budget submission will boost that number by more than $100 million, representing an increase of nearly half a billion dollars since we took office.

The Commonwealth’s efforts don’t stop with K-12 education.

For students and families struggling to pay for college, we’ll expand three successful initiatives. 

First, we’ll increase college scholarship funding by more than $7 million so that all community college students who qualify for Pell Grants, with an unmet financial need, will have their remaining tuition and fees fully covered.

Second,  we’ll significantly expand our early college programs.   Which give students the opportunity to take college-level courses and earn college credits while they’re still in high school.  This prepares students for academic success, reduces their costs and boosts college completion rates.

And third, we’ll continue to expand our Commonwealth Commitment plan.  Which makes it possible for students to earn four-year degrees for less than $30,000.   And that’s before including scholarships and state or federal grants.

In addition, to help the next generation of students get off to a good start we delivered, with your support, one of the largest increases in funding for early childhood education in over a decade in our 2018 budget.

All in, we’ve increased state spending on early education rates, delivering a $45 million wage increase for teachers.

For seven years in a row, Massachusetts has been ranked the most energy-efficient state in the country. 

In a few days, the Commonwealth will announce the results of the largest renewable energy procurement in our history.  The process enabled by our 2016 legislation will lead to clean energy pricing that’s competitive with carbon-emitting fossil fuels, a huge win for families, businesses and our environment.

And later this year, we’ll complete a competitive process that could lead to the construction of the largest offshore wind power operation in the nation. 

This effort will further reduce emissions, create thousands of green jobs in places like New Bedford and solidify our standing as a global leader in innovation and clean energy.

We’re also making new investments in the development of energy storage.   By helping to bridge the gaps in peak demand, expanded storage will boost the effectiveness of wind and solar power,  provide further price relief for ratepayers and pave the way for a future independent from fossil fuels.

But despite the tremendous progress we’ve made and will continue to make in Massachusetts our climate is still changing.

That’s why we’ll dedicate an additional $2 million to climate adaptation and resiliency planning efforts in our 2019 budget,  providing additional support to municipalities and accelerating statewide hazard mitigation planning.

On health care, we made a strong statement, that in this Commonwealth everyone will have access to quality care.

By working with Governors and Members of Congress we were able to preserve the health insurance program put in place in the Commonwealth a decade ago.

We must continue to be vigilant to protect what has worked for us.  And we’ll continue to advocate for bipartisan fixes to the Affordable Care Act that many Governors, Democrats and Republicans, fought for last year.

And we made an equally strong statement on women’s health care when we pledged that regardless of the outcome in D.C., no woman in Massachusetts will be denied reproductive health care services.

We have just six more months in this legislative session to work together on a long list of important initiatives. 

Let’s start with the opioid epidemic.  In 2015 Mayor Walsh and I testified on behalf of opioid addiction legislation which this body enacted several months later. Mr. Mayor thank you for your steadfast leadership on this issue.

Recently Secretary Marylou Sudders and I testified in support of the CARE Act. 

A follow up to that 2016 law.

The CARE Act will provide a framework for community based aftercare addiction services, expand school-based education and broaden paths to treatment for people dealing with addiction. 

Since 2015, we’ve added over 1,100 treatment beds, increased state spending on addiction services by 60%, upgraded our prescription monitoring program, required medical, dental, nursing, social work and pharmacy schools to teach every student about opioid therapy and pain management, increased access to NARCAN, certified hundreds of sober homes, expanded school-based education and screening programs and created new pathways to treatment. 

Over the next five years we also plan to add 500 treatment beds  and increase spending on addiction services by more than $200 million.

But everyone in this room knows we need to do more.

Please move quickly to enact the CARE Act.

In addition, we have to deal with Fentanyl.

Fentanyl was present in less than 30% of overdose deaths in 2014  but was present in more than 80% of overdose deaths in 2017.  Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies are working this issue hard.  But we have more to do to drive this deadly drug off our streets.

A bipartisan fentanyl bill that makes it easier to arrest and convict dealers and traffickers is in your hands.  I ask you to enact it as soon as possible.

We also have work to do to bolster behavioral health services.  The budget we file tomorrow will include more than $83 million in new funding for the Department of Mental Health to strengthen community based services for adults with serious mental illness.

In addition to integrating behavioral and physical healthcare these services will provide active outreach and engagement services, residential supports, clinical coverage 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and include peer and recovery coaches as part of the treatment team.  We urge that you make this initiative part of your budget.

As many of you know, we’ve significantly expanded our investments in workforce and affordable housing over the past three years. Investing hundreds of millions of dollars to create and preserve over 30,000 units of housing – often combining them with transit oriented development.

But here too, we must do more.  It has been decades since this state produced enough housing to keep up with demand.  The result has been predictable.  A limited supply creates overheated demand and rising prices. 

Young people, seniors, young, working and middle class families can’t afford to rent or buy a home here in the Commonwealth.

We filed legislation in 2017 that will make it possible to build more housing.  Our goal is 135,000 new units of housing by 2025.

We ask that this proposal be taken up soon because for too many people housing in the Commonwealth is unaffordable.

To increase the take-home pay for more than 400,000 working families we expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit in 2015.   We’re proposing another increase in the EITC in our budget which would result in a doubling of the credit.  I look forward to signing that provision into law.

We’ll also include additional skill building funds for low-income workers.   The funds will be targeted to job openings in each region so people can take the next step up the wage ladder.  And we’ll be filing an economic development bill in February, that will build on the success of the legislation that was signed into law in 2016.

Thanks to the strength of our economy our welfare caseload has dropped by 25 percent.   And our budget will include reforms that will help thousands more on public assistance find good jobs.

Last spring, I appointed a Council to address aging.  With a goal of making Massachusetts the most age-friendly state in the nation.  The council has provided a platform to think beyond public programs and to draw on expertise in technology, healthcare, business and innovation. 

We’re pleased to announce that AARP has formally designated Massachusetts as one of only two age-friendly states in the country. 

We’ll also be increasing state support for the Councils on Aging in our  2019 budget to the highest level ever.

Our discussions with the legislature and other interested parties about MassHealth have been helpful.   And we believe our shared goals of quality care and long-term sustainability can be achieved. 

Finally, while our K-12 schools are the envy of the nation,  we still have more to do to close the Opportunity Gap.  An innovative program in Springfield to address this issue is producing impressive results for middle and high school students — and deserves our attention.

The Springfield Empowerment Zone gives teachers and administrators a chance to share decision-making on professional development, curriculum, budgets, the works.  And it seems to be working for kids.  I visited the schools three times and every time I came away full of optimism for all involved.

Collaborative approaches like this one are working in Springfield.   And can work in other struggling districts as well.

Tammi Grimes and  Evan Christner are teachers in the Empowerment Zone in Springfield.  When I visited with them they told me this is a game changer – for them and for the kids they teach.  They are here with us tonight.

Thanks for joining us.   And thanks for the work you and your colleagues do every day here in the Commonwealth.

This is my fourth turn behind this podium.  I know I speak for the Lieutenant Governor and for myself when I say that the opportunity to serve has been the honor of a lifetime for both of us.

With this in mind, I want to close with a few thoughts on the responsibility we all share in serving our Commonwealth while in public office.

I don’t think I’m being too simplistic when I say we are all here to help people.  We may differ about how we get that done, but we all share that goal.  We want to create opportunities for people.

To help them get a great education.  To live in a great community.  To get a great job.  To live a long and healthy life.  To believe in their own future and the future for their kids and their families.

But we also want people to believe in their government.

This requires among other things, that we commit ourselves to a common decency in our debate and in our dealings with one another and the public.

That doesn’t mean we always have to agree.  We won’t.  There are 200 members of this Legislature.  Thousands of elected and appointed local officials.  And millions of adults in this state who all have life experience and a point of view.  Some of us will agree with each other most of the time.  Some will agree some of the time.  And some will never agree at all.

That’s okay.  That’s called ‘democracy’ and more often than not, it works.

Finally, we should recognize and never forget why we have this precious chance to serve our fellow citizens.

The most heart-wrenching responsibility I have as Governor is to meet a family at the airport as they stand silently waiting for the military casket of their loved one to come home.  I always say the same thing.  ‘I am sorry to be here today — and I know you are too.  If I can do anything for you — just ask.’

And each time I’ve said those words, that parent, spouse,  sibling responds with a heartfelt thank you. 

Think about that, in the midst of their immeasurable grief, they are kind and generous.  Grace beyond compare.

For generations, people put themselves in harm’s way so the rest of us could create and nurture a democracy.   A democracy based on a very simple concept ‘Out of Many – One.’

We owe every citizen our best efforts.  But we owe those who have paid the ultimate price to keep us free something more. 

We owe them the humility to understand that what we do in this building is tied to something so much bigger than partisanship.

It’s our job to create the cohesion envisioned by those who came before us.  To move this state forward.  To protect and fight for its interests and its people.  And to never forget that we are the lucky ones.

We live in a great state filled with creative, community-minded, hard-working, decent people.  And what they want from us is opportunity, possibility, and hope.

Not noise.  Not name-calling.  And not finger-pointing. 

Progress on the things that help them help themselves.

We’ve done great work with you on many important issues.  But our work has just begun.  We stand ready to do so much more.  On housing.  Economic development.  Life sciences.  Education.  Criminal Justice. Community Building.  Transportation.  And Addiction.

But most of all, we all gather here tonight as the grateful recipients of a profound opportunity to serve the great people of this great state.  Let’s make the most of it.

God Bless This Commonwealth.

God Bless the United States of America.”


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Sponsor: GoLocalProv

Sample: N=403

Rhode Island General Election Voters Margin of Error: +/- 4.9% at 95% Confidence Level

Interviewing Period: October 9-11, 2017

Mode: Landline (61%) and Mobile (39%)

Telephone Directed by: John Della Volpe, SocialSphere, Inc.

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Are you registered to vote at this address?

Yes: 100%

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When it comes to voting, do you consider yourself to be affiliated with the Democratic Party, the Republican Party, Moderate, or Unaffiliated with a major party?

Unaffiliated: 49%

Democrat: 32%

Republican: 15%

Moderate: .4%

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Next year, in November of 2018, there will be a statewide general election for Governor and many other state offices. How likely is it that you will vote in this election?

Will you definitely be voting, will you probably be voting, are you 50-50…

Definitely be voting: 78%

Probably be voting: 13%

50-50: 9%

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In general, would you say things in Rhode Island are headed in the right direction or are they off on the wrong track?

Right track: 39%

Wrong track: 45%

Mixed: 10%

Don’t know/Refused: .6%

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What would you say is the number one problem facing Rhode Island that you would like the Governor to address?

Jobs and economy:  21%

Education: 12%

Taxes: 12%

Roads: 12%

State budget: 9%

Corruption/Public integrity: .8%

Healthcare: 3%

Governor: 3%

Homelessness: 2%

Immigration: 2%

Other: 7%

Don’t know: .9%

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Over the past three years or so, would you say the economy in Rhode Island has improved, gotten worse, or not changed at all?

Changed for the better: 35%

Changed for the worse: 16%

Not changed at all: 43%

Don’t know/Refused: 5%

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Over the same time, has your family’s financial situation improved, gotten worse, or not changed at all?

Changed for the better: 26%

Changed for the worse: 19%

Not changed at all: 54%

Don’t know/Refused: 1%

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Recently, a proposal has been made to permit the issuance of $81 million in bonds by the State to build a new stadium for the Pawtucket Red Sox. If there was an election today on this issue, would you vote to approve or reject issuing $81 million in financing supported moral obligation bonds to build the stadium?

Net: Approve: 28%

Definitely approve: 15%

Probably approve: 14%

Net: Reject: 67%

Probably reject: 19%

Definitely reject: 48%

Don’t know: 4%

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Could you please tell me your age?

18-24: 7%

25-34: 15%

35-44: 15%

45-54: 20%

55-64: 17%

65+: 25%

Don’t know/refused: 1%

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What was the last grade you completed in school?

0-11: 2%

High school grad: 16%

Technical/Vocational school: 1%

Some college: 23%

College grad: 34%

Graduate degree: 24%

Don’t know/refused: 1%

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The next question is about the total income of YOUR HOUSEHOLD for the PAST 12 MONTHS. Please include your income PLUS the income of all members living in your household (including cohabiting partners and armed forces members living at home).

$50,000 or less: 27%

More $50,000 but less than $75,000: 13%

More $75,000 but less than $100,000: 13%

More $100,000 but less than $150,000: 17%

$150,000 or more: 13%

Don’t know/refused: 17%

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What particular ethnic group or nationality – such as English, French, Italian, Irish, Latino, Jewish, African American, and so forth – do you consider yourself a part of or feel closest to?

American/None: 21%

English: 13%

Italian: 13%

Irish: 12%

Black or African American: 6%

Latino/Hispanic: 6%

French: 6%

Portuguese: 3%

Jewish: 3%

German: 1%

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Would you say that Donald Trump has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as President?

Excellent: 13%
Good: 12%
Fair: 14%
Poor: 57%
Never heard of:  0%
Cannot rate: 3%

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Would you say that Jack Reed has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as a United States Senator?

Excellent: 22%
Good: 29%
Fair: 23%
Poor: 15%
Never heard of: 6%
Cannot rate: 6%

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Would you say that Sheldon Whitehouse has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as a United States Senator?

Excellent: 17%
Good: 22%
Fair: 21%
Poor: 28%
Never heard of: 6%
Cannot rate: 7%

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Would you say that David Cicilline has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as a Member of Congress?

Excellent: 9%
Good: 29%
Fair: 21%
Poor: 27%
Never heard of: 6%
Cannot rate:  8%

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Would you say that James Langevin has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as a Member of Congress?

Excellent: 7%
Good: 30%
Fair: 20%
Poor: 18%
Never heard of: 13%
Cannot rate: 11%

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Would you say that Gina Raimondo has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as Governor?

Excellent: 6%
Good: 28%
Fair: 30%
Poor: 31%
Never heard of: 1%
Cannot rate: 3%

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Would you say that Daniel McKee has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as Lieutenant Governor?

Excellent: 3%
Good: 16%
Fair: 21%
Poor: 8%
Never heard of: 26%
Cannot rate: 25%

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Would you say that Peter Kilmartin has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as Attorney General?

Excellent: 3%
Good: 20%
Fair: 28%
Poor: 17%
Never heard of: 13%
Cannot rate: 19%

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Would you say that Seth Magaziner has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as General Treasurer?

Excellent: 4%
Good: 18%
Fair: 24%
Poor: 13%
Never heard of: 21%
Cannot rate: 21%

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Would you say that Nellie Gorbea has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as Secretary of State?

Excellent: 5%
Good: 21%
Fair: 21%
Poor: 10%
Never heard of: 20%
Cannot rate: 23%

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Would you say that Jorge Elorza has done an excellent good, fair or poor job as Mayor of Providence?

Excellent: 4%
Good: 24%
Fair: 24%
Poor: 22%
Never heard of: 9%
Cannot rate: 15%

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Jack Whitten, Bessemer-born painter and sculptor, dead at 78

Jack Whitten, the African-American painter and sculptor who died Sunday at 78, was once given a tour of St. Catherine’s Monastery, at Mount Sinai. His guide, a young monk, led him down into the ossuary — “room after room of bones, of every monk who had served at St. Catherine’s.”

“This monk,” he told the cultural forum Brooklyn Rail last year, “said, ‘I understand you are a professor.’ I said, ‘Yes sir, humbly so.’ And he said to me, ‘Here,’ pointing to the bones, ‘they are the professors and we are the students.’ “

In departing this world, Whitten leaves behind not just bones but an extraordinary body of work that, after decades of neglect, is just beginning to receive its due. It has a lot to teach us.

In an art world lately bent on rediscovering neglected artists — not all of them deserving — Whitten is the real thing, an artist whose intelligence and ambition seeped into everything he did. A restless innovator who worked in two and three dimensions, he fought to give a concentrated spiritual charge to physical materials. He wanted to merge ghostly abstraction with concrete immediacy, the sensuous world with tremors of the vast unseen.

It has been clear since 2013 — when a show of abstract paintings Whitten made between 1971 and 1973 was mounted at the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University — that his reputation was undergoing a massive reappraisal.

That reappraisal, which included a 2014 retrospective organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, was fast gaining traction but still in low gear when he died.

The timing of Whitten’s passing seems especially bitter. “Odyssey: Jack Whitten Sculpture 1965-2017” opens in April at the Baltimore Museum of Art before moving to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. It includes his most deeply personal work — carved and assembled sculptures that he declined to show until now, and in which he invested great reserves of creative energy and personal feeling.

Jack Whitten. Artist studio, 36 Lispenard St. in New York, 1983. (MUST CREDIT: Peter Bellamy/Copyright Jack Whitten; Courtesy Hauser & Wirth)  

“It’s so wrenchingly unfair,” said Kelly Baum, the Met’s curator of contemporary art. “It’s so hard to get over that wound of not getting what you deserved. Jack suffered from racism his whole life, but somehow he didn’t let it touch him or preoccupy him. His deep and profound under-recognition didn’t ruin his life. He felt it, but he went on to have the most marvelous life through sheer character and personality and force of will.”

Whitten made the majority of the sculptures in his studio in Crete, where he spent long stretches of almost every year since 1969. His wife, Mary, is a Greek American; they have a daughter, Mirsini, who is his studio manager.

Katy Siegel, who organized the show with Baum, described Whitten as “one of the most wonderful people I’ve ever met. His greatness as an artist stems from who he was as a person.”

Whitten was born in Bessemer, Alabama, the son of a seamstress and a coal miner who died when he was a child. In segregated Alabama, African Americans were allowed into art museums only once each year. Black children, according to Baum, were more often shown the steel mill and told to expect to end up there.

Whitten was a pre-med student with a range of intellectual interests when he went to hear Martin Luther King Jr. speak during the Montgomery bus boycott. They conversed, and Whitten joined King’s movement.

“When I met him in ’57,” he told Earnest, “I believed in him. I believed in the whole concept of nonviolence.”

But Whitten’s convictions were severely tested in early 1960. He went to Louisiana and was among the students who closed down Southern University and marched in downtown Baton Rouge.

“On that march we had to make a vow that whatever happened, we wouldn’t fight back. I witnessed evil. I saw hatred coming out of white people. They attacked us, threw s— and piss on us. We made it all the way to the state Capitol building as they were hitting us with sticks. I did it then, but I made a vow I would never put myself in that position again. That march is what drove me out of the South. I took a Greyhound bus to New York City.”

Whitten enrolled at Cooper Union and, like many aspiring artists, fell under the spell of the charismatic abstract expressionist Willem de Kooning. He never ceased admiring de Kooning. But having absorbed the lessons of abstract expressionism, he knew he needed to get beyond them.

He had a genius, Siegel said, for “summing up and moving on.”

“Where he went next,” she said, “went very much to who he was as a human being. He wasn’t interested in art for art’s sake. Instead he developed a very expansive view of art’s role in understanding both the physical world and the world of the spirit and of emotion.”

Process — the “how” of making art rather than the “what” — became fundamental. To replace brushes, he made his own tools with which to apply paint. He experimented with an Afro comb, then a 12-foot-long brush of his own devising, and he separated pigment from acrylic medium, in one series scattering pigment over paper covered in clear acrylic.

He was also looking at African sculptures in the Metropolitan Museum, absorbing not only their forms — as European artists earlier in the 20th century had done — but their spiritual significance. He fused this with his burgeoning interest in religions all over the world and his African-American heritage, including his upbringing in a fundamentalist Protestant church.

Whitten’s work, once seen, needs no special pleading. The best of it all but forces consensus. Visually arresting, technically ambitious and personally urgent, it can feel like a missing link between the abstraction expressionists of the postwar years and the minimalists and conceptualists of the ’70s and ’80s.

It enriches the abstract tradition in Western art with fresh political and spiritual content, and deepens our understanding of the background of major trends in recent African American art, from the material-loving, politically conscious abstractions of Mark Bradford to the politically and spiritually charged sculptures of Betye Saar and Vanessa German.

He is gone, but there remains so much of him still to discover.

RankTribe™ Black Business Directory News – Arts & Entertainment

Stress About Health Insurance Costs Reported by Majority of Americans

(HealthNewsDigest.com) – WASHINGTON — A majority of U.S. adults (66 percent) cite the cost of health insurance as a stressor for themselves and their loved ones when asked about specific health issues that cause them stress. This stress about the cost of health insurance seems to affect Americans at all income levels. In addition, more than six in 10 adults (63 percent) cite uncertainty about the future, both with their own health and that of others, as a source of stress. Insurance costs and looming uncertainty about the future are just two of the numerous causes of concern about health care, according to the American Psychological Association’s (APA) report “Stress in AmericaTM: Uncertainty About Health Care.”

Released today, the report takes a deeper look at how health and health care are affecting the stress levels of Americans. Sixty percent of American adults say personal health concerns or health problems affecting their family are a significant source of stress. Sixty-four percent of those with less than $50,000 in annual household income cite health insurance costs as a source of stress, while 69 percent of those with an annual household income of $50,000 or more report stress from the cost of health insurance.

The survey also found that uninsured adults reported a significantly higher average stress level of 5.6 (on a 10-point scale, where 1 is “little or no stress” and 10 is “a great deal of stress”) when compared with adults who have health insurance (4.7).

“Given the uncertain fate of our nation’s health care system, it is not surprising that the majority of those adults surveyed expressed concerns about access to health care and costs,” said Arthur C. Evans Jr., PhD, APA’s chief executive officer.

“If stress becomes chronic, it can lead to significant health consequences. It’s important to remember that there are steps that people can take to manage their stress in healthy and productive ways, like exercising, spending time with friends and family, and finding ways to get involved in your community, including making your concerns known to policymakers.”

The survey also found a divide in the average stress levels among Americans living in urban (5.2), suburban (4.5) and rural (4.7) areas. While adults living in the different areas report similar sources of stress when it comes to health care, the percentage of their reported stress among these sources varies. More Americans in urban areas are stressed about the cost of health insurance (74 percent) than those in suburban (62 percent) and rural (64 percent) areas. Uncertainty about the future regarding their health and those of their loved ones is another area of divide among urban (71 percent), suburban (61 percent) and rural (55 percent) adults. Both suburban and rural Americans are equally stressed about changes to health care policy from Washington (56 percent), while urban Americans again experience a higher amount of stress (66 percent) about this issue.

When it comes to stress regarding specific health care issues, those in each age group report different percentages of stress depending on the source. A lack of access to mental health care is a greater source of stress for Millennials (56 percent) and Gen Xers (47 percent) than for Boomers (27 percent) and older adults (20 percent). Reproductive health care access is another area where this divide is most evident, with the issue stressing Millennials (55 percent) and Gen Xers (43 percent) more than Boomers (25 percent) and older adults (14 percent).

In addition to age, race and ethnicity also play a role in concerns about health care. Nearly two-thirds of Hispanic adults (64 percent) say they experience stress when thinking about themselves, their loved ones or people in general losing access to health care services. In comparison, this was cited less often by members of other racial and ethnic groups, though still reported by about half of respondents (i.e., 56 percent of Asian Americans, 51 percent of Black Americans, 50 percent of Native Americans and 49 percent of White Americans).

To read the full Stress in America report or download graphics, visit http://www.stressinamerica.org.

For additional information on stress, lifestyle and behaviors, visit www.apa.org/helpcenter. Join the conversation about stress on Twitter by following @APAHelpCenter and #stressAPA.

Methodology

The 2017 Stress in America™ survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of the American Psychological Association between Aug. 2 and 31, 2017, among 3,440 adults age 18+ who reside in the U.S., including 1,376 men, 2,047 women, 1,088 White, 810 Hispanic, 808 Black, 506 Asian, and 206 Native American adults. Interviews were conducted in English (n=3,187) and Spanish (n=253). Data were weighted to reflect their proportions in the population. Weighting variables included age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. Hispanic respondents were weighted for acculturation, taking into account respondents’ household language as well as ability to read and speak in English and Spanish. Because the sample is based on those who were invited and agreed to participate in The Harris Poll online research panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. A full methodology is available at www.stressinamerica.org.

The American Psychological Association, in Washington, D.C., is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States. APA’s membership includes nearly 115,700 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance the creation, communication and application of psychological knowledge to benefit society and improve people’s lives.

Nicole Griffin Receives 2018 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Legacy Award

Nicole Griffin Receives 2018 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Legacy Award

Updated January 23, 2018 3:37 AM

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(BLOOMINGTON) – The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Legacy Award, presented at the City’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration, was recently awarded to Nicole Griffin. The annual award is given to a person who has made significant contributions in the areas of race relations, justice, and human rights.

Griffin stays heavily invested in her community, serving on the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Commission (including as commission chair for three years), and serving on the Black History Month Committee, where she spearheaded an initiative to recognize local women who had gone unnoticed and unsung, but who had been instrumental in the mentoring and nurturing of others. Griffin helped create the Summer Heritage Camp, which gives children a sense of belonging and opportunities to keep in touch with their heritage. Along with her husband, Donald Griffin, she also created the Black History Month Living Legends Award, which recognizes African-American Bloomingtonians who have helped shape the campus and community.

Additionally, Griffin has encouraged more representation of African-American artists in the Eskenazi Museum of Art. She served on the planning committee for the 2017 American Heart Association annual fundraising luncheon and encouraged dozens of young entrepreneurs through the Lemonade Day program.

For her kind spirit, her grace under pressure, her willingness to always step in and lend a helping hand, and her unwavering service to her community, the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration Commission was proud to present Nicole Griffin with the 2018 MLK Legacy Award.

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RankTribe™ Black Business Directory News – Arts & Entertainment

Collecting African American history in Galesville

The Lost Towns Project, Inc. held a kick-off meeting, the first of three events, to invite African Americans to help tell the history of southern Anne Arundel County through their personal stories of life, events and sites, at the Galesville Community Center, Saturday, January 13, 2018.

Editorial – Time to do something about Trump’s racism

Donald J. Trump, the 45th president of the United States, is a racist.

His latest alleged “s–t hole countries” comment made in a White House immigration meeting regarding predominantly black countries like African countries and Haiti is only the most recent in his long history of racist rhetoric.

Though Trump has repeatedly asserted he is the “least racist person,” The New York Times compiled a list of his own words that proves otherwise.

The man has made numerous racially insensitive comments that span the entirety of his time as a public figure. From his time as a New York real estate developer in the ‘70s and ‘80s to his political rise born out of his now-refuted claim that Barack Obama was born in Kenya, to the launch of his presidential campaign when he described some Mexicans as rapists, Trump has talked about and treated people differently based on their race and still does so.

And let’s face it, The New York Times can’t make such a large composite that extends all the way back to the ‘70s if that person isn’t a racist.

So it’s time to start calling Trump what he is. It’s important the American people waste less time debating the truth and more time debating important things like what to do about immigration, especially with the fate of about 800,000 DACA recipients on the line.

Plus, debating whether someone is indeed a racist has done nothing but complicate the very meaning of the word.

But at it’s core, racism is still the belief that race is an inherent and determining factor in a person’s or a people’s character and capabilities, rendering some inferior and others superior.

So when people say something like Haitians have AIDS or Mexicans are rapists, like the current American president has, it’s probably safe to say they’re racists.

By understanding the definition of racism, reports that Trump is a racist or a white supremacist are not fake news. It’s the truth, supported by decades of his own words.

But what is there to do about it?

Though Trump is not the first racist president, America needs to finally learn to reject racism and make him the last. If, by some miracle, the man makes it through his first term, he mustn’t be allowed a second in 2020.

But before that, voters must flood the polls this year to take away the power of Trump’s defenders, apologists, accomplices and those whose complicit silence perpetuate his racism-fueled endeavors.

And with the Russia probe still ongoing, the people must ensure the House and Senate have enough anti-Trump votes to make impeachment a possibility.

The people must also continue to scrutinize all of the policies the president supports, the positions he takes and the appointments he makes for signs of his racism because everything he does is a reflection of who he is and what he believes. The beliefs of racists cannot be separated from their actions.

His policies on health care, crime, immigration and other issues will harm African-Americans, Latinos, Asian-Americans and other minorities. And anyone who thinks that’s an accident isn’t paying attention.

The American people must be cognizant of but not discouraged by the mountain they face. Yes, enough people were willing to accept or overlook his racism to elect him, but he is not unstoppable.

May America continue to fight for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream and wake up from Trump’s nightmare.

Call-Out Culture is a Toxic Garbage Dumpster Fire of Trash

A visual representation of our national discourse.

A visual representation of our national discourse. Baloncici/Getty Images

Trash. He’s trash. She’s trash. They’re trash. You’re trash.

“Trash”—as well as its sister term “garbage”—has become the word du jour to describe everything from men to Tinder to, perhaps most frequently, Lena Dunham. It’s a term hurled, not tossed, and the feeling it seems to convey is, “You are a terrible person/place/thing, no better than a pile of wet newspapers moldering in a roadside ditch.” While plenty of terms convey exactly the same thing (“scum,” “vermin,” “dregs”), “trash” has an extra bite to it, because it doesn’t just mean you suck, it also means you aren’t woke.

“Woke”—for those of you who don’t spend a lot of time on Twitter—indicates, roughly, that one is enlightened to the social causes of the day. You believe black lives matter (or you believe it enough to put a sign in the window of the palatial $1.5 million townhouse you just built in the Central District); you unequivocally support the #MeToo movement; and you would never, ever, ever, ever vote for Donald Trump (although you might vote for Jill Stein, which is basically the same thing). “Woke” may have entered Internet consciousness in the last few years, but according to the invaluable internet resource Know Your Meme, “The earliest known instance of the ‘woke’ as slang for political or social awareness comes from an article in the New York Times magazine. On May 20th, 1962, the Times published a piece on white beatniks appropriating black culture by African-American novelist William Melvin Kelley entitled ‘If You’re Woke, You Dig It.’” Woke, today, is still being appropriated by white people, plenty of whom will happily tell you, if you’re not woke, you’re trash.

I know this because I am trash. Or at least, that’s the impression you may get from the things people write to and about me. My take on dogs on planes? Trash. My take on the place of lesbians in the queer hierarchy? Trash. My take on Aziz Ansari? So trash that a former Stranger writer spent several thousand words refuting what is essentially my opinion on her own blog. This Slog post? Definitely trash.

The criticism of these pieces, and of me personally, doesn’t actually bother me all that much—my job requires that one acquire a certain thickness of skin, and besides, hate clicks are still clicks—but I can see why people are afraid to voice their opinions if their opinions are even slightly outside the tide of contemporary thinking. When it emerged recently that Harper’s Magazine was supposedly planning to publish an article outing the creator of the now-infamous Shitty Media Men list in a forthcoming issue, people across Twitter—primarily women in media, including a number of journalists—sprung into action, declaring that the apparent author of the unpublished article, Katie Roiphe, was trash, and that Harper’s was trash, too. Writer Nicole Cliffe offered to pay anyone willing to pull pieces they had promised to Harper’s. A number of writers took her up on it and at least one advertiser dropped the magazine entirely. It didn’t matter than the rumor hadn’t been confirmed, or that no one had actually read the piece, or that Roiphe told the New York Times that the article didn’t actually out anyone at all; the outrage machine was already rolling. And it was journalists—people who should know how to fact check first—who were fueling it.

There’s a name for this behavior: witch hunts. Someone is accused, judged, and condemned for an alleged or apparent transgression, and the townspeople on Facebook and Twitter grab their pitchforks and rush to the burn pile. There may be little evidence to support the prevailing narrative, but that hardly matters. The trial is conducted via social media, and the judges are anyone with access. Take a recent incident in Seattle, when the (ironically, Jewish) founder of the Punk Rock Flea Market was widely accused of being a Nazi sympathizer after a false and unsubstantiated claim that he kicked a woman of color out of his event was circulated on social media. I often write about social media mobs exactly like this, and what I have found is that they are not frequently misinformed, they are almost always misinformed. You just don’t know what happened unless you were A) there, or B) someone has actually investigated whatever claims have come forth. But that’s not how mobs work.

This atmosphere makes it difficult, if not impossible, to dissent. I was recently talking to a friend about the #MeToo movement. In hushed tones, she told me she had a confession to make. “Don’t tell anyone,” she said, “but I don’t think Woody Allen raped his daughter.” Luckily for her, she was in good company—I also doubt the veracity of Woody Allen’s guilt because the evidence just doesn’t support the claims—but she said this as though she were confessing a terrible crime. And she was: a thought crime, one so potentially harmful to her standing among her own friends that expressing it to anyone besides a known thought criminal was unthinkable. The resistance, it seems, is intersectional in everything but opinions.

In a recent Wired piece, techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci wrote about contemporary censorship, which comes not from governments but from our own social networks. “The most effective forms of censorship today involve meddling with trust and attention, not muzzling speech itself,” she wrote. “As a result, they don’t look much like the old forms of censorship at all. They look like viral or coordinated harassment campaigns, which harness the dynamics of viral outrage to impose an unbearable and disproportionate cost on the act of speaking out.”

I see this every day. Just this week, a complete stranger tagged me in a tweet:

This person, Guy, finds my opinions so “incendiary”—so trash—that he wants me to get fired from my job for expressing my thoughts. That blows my mind. I’m a critic at an alt-weekly, not a politician. My views are just that: my own views. The idea that my opinions are so dangerous that I should be fired from my job isn’t just silly, it’s scary. It’s not like I’m over here advocating that everyone go out and club baby seals.

Progressives used to be the able to handle dissent. The Democrats were the party of free speech and free thought. No more. Among far too many leftists, if you disagree, you are wrong. And if you are wrong, you are bad, and if you are bad, you are trash.

This is a shame, and not just because I’m sick of getting angry emails. It’s a shame because this call-out culture prevents people from actually speaking their minds, because they are too scared of being unfriended, unfollowed, blocked, shunned, or dismissed as simply trash. But we shouldn’t be shutting opinions we disagree with down; we should be seeking them out. You don’t learn much if everyone around you believes—or professes to believe—the exact same thing as you do, and if we don’t expose ourselves to a diversity of opinions, we are never going to get out our self-imposed echo chambers. These echo chambers didn’t just bring us President Donald Trump; they brought us a liberal establishment so unable to see and believe that other people actually liked the fucker, that we all laughed at his candidacy instead of taking it as the very real threat that it was all along.

The world is falling apart around us, and we—liberals, progressive, leftists, whatever you want to call us—are too busy fighting with each other to actually do anything concrete about it, even though we agree on most of the big, important issues. The reality is, we are more alike than we are different. Like every other progressive worth my “I voted” sticker, I think Trump is the biggest threat to world stability that we’ve seen in the past 50 years. I think women should be able to procure abortions easily, cheaply, and legally. I believe that climate change is an existential threat to humanity, that white supremacy and unfettered capitalism are bad for us all, and that every single person on this planet should have access to housing, health care, clean water, good jobs, fair wages, and food to feed their kids. But that doesn’t matter—all that matters are these tiny, minute disagreements about pussy hats or emotional support animals or disgraced celebrities or whatever outrage of the day has captured the national attention. All that matters, is that you are woke, and I am trash.

A year after Trump’s inauguration, the left should be celebrating. Trump marked his one-year anniversary in the White House with a government shutdown. The Republican Party is in such disarray that 19 incumbent Republicans are retiring from public office because they know they cannot win. Democrats have had strong victories around the US. Courts have struck down gerrymandering left and right. The left should be in a good—no, a great—position to take over Congress in 2018, and the White House two years after that. And maybe we will succeed at that oh-so-vital task. But if we do, it won’t be because we’re united; it will be because the one thing we can all agree on is that the alternative is so much goddamn worse.

But, of course, this is just my opinion, so be careful before you repeat it. After all, I’m trash.

In and Around Park Forest for the Week of January 21, 2018

No Picture

Federal and International

All TERMINIX Locations Have Ceased Using Pesticides Containing Methyl Bromide in the United States Employees Illegally Applied Pesticides Containing Methyl Bromide to Residences in St. John, St. Croix, and St. Thomas, U.S.V.I. USVI–(ENEWSPF)–March 29, 2016.  READ MORE

RankTribe™ Black Business Directory News – Arts & Entertainment

Community advocate Dorothy Wong reflects on a career of public service for APIs

Dorothy Wong • Photo by Lyra Fontaine

Longtime community advocate Dorothy Wong has dedicated her career to leading organizations that provide much-needed services for the Asian Pacific Islander population, including health care, education and family support.

As the former Executive Director of International Community Health Services, Wong led the transformation of the formerly small storefront clinic to become in 2005 the largest Asian Pacific American service organization in the Pacific Northwest.  In the past five years, Wong served on Seattle’s Asian Pacific Directors Coalition, the Alliance of Eastside Agencies and the King County Asian Pacific Islander Coalition.

Most recently, she was director of the Chinese Information and Service Center. “I would like to stay involved in the community,” she said.

Wong spoke with the International Examiner about being a student during the Civil Rights Movement, issues facing the local API community and how the current administration could impact funding for health care and nonprofits.

International Examiner: What led you to career advocating for public health in API communities?

Dorothy Wong: I grew up within the context of community involvement and people engaging in leadership positions. My maternal grandfather was a university professor and my paternal grandfather became the head of our family association. When the Chinese first arrived here and were discriminated against, they formed family associations, pulling their resources together to help one another. We grew up middle class but in rapid succession, my father and grandfather died. My mother suddenly found herself alone, not knowing the language and American culture and having to raise us while fulfilling her obligations as a daughter. Those factors played into my being aware at a very young age about some of the struggle and circumstances that families can encounter, particularly immigrant families. We were fortunate in that our family had resources and didn’t suffer economically. I think the notion of both having advantages and also seeing hardship framed my mind and how I see the world. In my generation, women were expected to be in traditional roles. I could see I was being groomed for a different role in life which contradicted with what women were expected to do.

I grew up in a small Navy town not surrounded by a lot of Asians and did face discrimination, especially in adolescence. You can see how racism is learned. That element triggered my awareness of racial discrimination and inequality. Then the civil rights and free speech movement happened. Berkeley was ranked the number-one university in the country at the time and I got to go there. Having access to opportunities that I never thought were possible was an enormous gift. I think that was the most exciting time in the Bay Area because you watched the nation evolve.

After Berkeley, I ended up working in a predominately African-American community in San Francisco, working with mental health and substance abuse patients from low-income families. I observed how the African-American community dealt with racism and the conflict between men and women. I was able to work my way up from secretary to office manager within that agency. Later, I worked at a community health center in San Francisco. I realized my best strength was administrative, operational experience. I chose to get an MBA to get into the corporate sector, but what I learned was managerial systems — how to manage your financial resources, organize and manage work efficiently. Then it dawned on me: I could use those techniques in a nonprofit.

My first job as a director was for the Asian AIDS Project. The epidemic was escalating at that time. When I took over the agency, the LGBTQ community did not support it. Two years later, we became the third-best AIDS and HIV program in San Francisco. I had to really turn around and prove to the community that I was serious about addressing the need.

IE: As executive director of ICHS for 12 years, how did you help transform the organization?

DW: The ICHS was a struggling storefront clinic and was on the verge of being merged. The fact that I came with a knowledge of managerial principles helped. [In addition], community health centers in Washington were banding together to form an organized health care plan. Money started flowing for community health and medical services, providing funds for us to grow.

Within the CID, there was a lot of development happening. We partnered to work together with the PDA’s Village Square Project and got the opportunity to build our first clinic. Sometimes it’s knowing when to leverage opportunities that are before you. Choosing strategic partners at the right time was also critical.

I had to grow ICHS. Strategically, I needed to buy a clinic in Holly Park for medical and dental services. That created the Holly Park Clinic. Then, we were in the path of the light rail system. We took mitigation money from the light rail system and built an expanded medical and dental clinic.

I left for personal reasons and it was time to pass the baton. ICHS was fortunate to have Teresita, who took ICHS to the stratosphere, but I feel good about laying the foundation. What I found about the API community here in Seattle was that they were politically savvy. They put aside their ethnic differences and worked together politically as a force, epitomizing the API community. There were Asians on the City Council and in the state Representatives, and at that time this was very impressive.

IE: What are you most proud of accomplishing during your time as CISC executive director?

DW: I helped CISC assess how to improve its service delivery model. Issues nonprofits face are not enough funding and how services are funded.  Our early learning program only serves 20 children instead of hundreds of children, so it was difficult to get funding for infrastructure. I recognized that and got the agency to look at how it could build support with the resources it had and for staff to rethink how they structure programs. How do we evaluate what we’re doing and plan?

Bringing management practices, processes and theories is important for nonprofits. We became part of the Bridgespan Group’s organizational development program Leading for Impact. I remember years ago an African-American leader who ran a very effective nonprofit telling me, “We are in the business of taking care of people.” You’re in the people business, but you also must be careful to use appropriate outcome measures.

IE: What do you consider the most important issues affecting CID and API communities in Seattle?

DW: The influx of people coming into Seattle is enormous and more diverse than we could have anticipated, including the API community. We are getting a lot of newcomers who are not the typical newcomers organizations are used to serving. They’re wealthy…that doesn’t mean they don’t have challenges, but we can’t serve them because our funding is primarily from the government. Their needs may be different as well. We are also getting a lot of Asian Americans working for corporations who don’t have a history of being in the ID or with the traditional Asian community here. How can you engage them?

Additionally, that huge number of API…creates a misleading impression that the API community is doing well. The people we are used to serving still face challenges. There is a lot of advocacy now about disaggregating the API umbrella, so we can more accurately identify the needs and continue to have funding to provide services. There are still many low-income immigrants who are struggling and are now getting pushed out of Seattle into outlying areas that don’t have the resources to provide services they need.

For many nonprofits that I’m aware of, most money comes from government funding. I think [recent tax reform] cuts will have significant impact on nonprofits’ future. There’s something about the economic environment we are becoming now that is going to impact the future of the community work that we’re doing and this country as a society. The people I know who work in nonprofits do it because they care about people’s well-being, but that’s not being rewarded. A society that values health and wellbeing of its citizens will have a very different take on how a country’s resources will be allocated, as opposed to a country where your ability to accumulate and demonstrate wealth is a measure of your worth.

Any advice or comments to younger leaders and activists in the community?

DW: We need your activism. When I first got involved, we had something at stake that drove our involvement. For the young people coming of age, they have a lot to lose unless they take action. To do something means to put yourself at risk and I think that’s where most people stop…I saw the fight and remember the struggle and I also reaped the benefits of it. The life I have lived is truly a privilege, to be a single woman, to do what I do without a man by my arm, to go where I go, was the result of a lot of fighting and advocacy. I’ve gone through more hell on a very personal level during the whole time I was doing all my work than I could have ever imagined, because I was bumping against the flow. Fortunately, a lot of my predecessors paved the way for me. That doesn’t mean it was easy… But the enrichment that I got out of it far surpasses that.

On a personal level, I compare my life to my mother’s life. She lost opportunities to pursue her dream due to the circumstances she encountered. Within one generation, I had a fundamentally different life. I can see that within one generation, everything I thought was available to me and future generations could disappear quickly. I never thought I would see in my lifetime the election of a black president and having said that, I never thought I’d see that everything — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid — could go away quickly. Vote. Taxes are what funds public infrastructure, public health, first responders, emergency disaster relief.

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