Newark Notables – June 26, 2009

  • Cory Booker in the House
  • The launch looks like it was a smashing success — congratulations! It’s exciting to see the level of dialog rising in this city.

    Not too long ago, a commercial blog about Newark would have been a non-starter. What a difference a few years makes.

  • Mayor Cory Booker says women’s drug rehabilitation center in Newark will benefit communities
  • Behind the big events are the small ones. Stories like this show the city is transforming, one changed life at a time.

    Booker, who has long supported projects by Integrity, a nonprofit corporation focused on addiction rehabilitation, said the new Integrity Women’s Outpatient Services would help women, and as a result benefit whole communities.

    “If you support women, you can transform a village,” he said during a brief speech held in the foyer of the building. “When a woman rises up, she lifts all of us up.”

    Impressed by Newark’s energetic mayor, media icon Oprah Winfrey donated $500,000 to Integrity to build the center. Money from other private donations and funding from the city of Newark also helped transform the modest three-floor house on Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard into what its founders hope is a haven for women recovering from drug addiction.

  • N.J. fans react to Michael Jackson’s death
  • The Ledger shares reactions of MJ’s death from Newark’s streets. This morning as I stepped out of my apartment at 7:30am, a red van pulled by, windows rolled down and the music up.

    It only took a few seconds for me to recognize “Billie Jean” playing as the driver and I shared a solemn nod and he drove past.

  • CoryBooker: 2 fellow coffee lovers: Not going 2my bed 2nite,if u must know,I’m hooking up with a sweet,hot blend from Argentina,we’ll b up all nite long
  • If you spend enough time watching and talking to the Mayor, you get the sense that he’s a sincere, compassionate, and motivated individual…with a really quirky sense of humor.

    Twitter has been a wonderful window into the life of the Mayor, whose tweets range from inspirational quotes to meeting notices to calls to action for citizens local and beyond.

    And every once in a while, you get a window into the Cory Booker that isn’t being quoted in the Ledger on the Colbert Report.

    Booker’s staff does an excellent job reigning him in (the Mayor has said as much himself), but last night’s comment was just too classic to not share.

    If I could offer a caution to the Mayor: be careful with that dark, caffeinated mistress. She may be sweet in small doses, but too much time with her and the paranoia really begins to set in.

  • NewarkNow: Great article on a few Fathers Now graduates
  • Amazing story about the work being done at the Newark Comprehensive Center for Fathers, a service provided to struggling Newark dads by local non-profit, Newark Now.  It’s organizations like this that are transforming the city, one life at a time: Dads Rediscover Rites of Passage

    The program is an extension of the National Comprehensive Center for Fathers in Philadelphia.  The program targets fathers, but the underlying goal is to make them whole men. During the eight weeks the men are in a class setting where they learn how to handle everything from family dynamics, relationship conflicts and parenting skills to the math and reading basics.

    When Robinson came to the center, based at Essex County College in Newark, not only was he going through the challenges of divorce, but he also had trouble reading. He is now working on getting his General Equivalency Diploma and he reads everyday.

    “I had never been around black and Latino men who really knew about how to achieve the things they wanted to achieve. They made me feel special and they were really here to help me,” Robinson says.

Author: Ken Walker

Husband, Father, Newarker, PCA Elder, Business Analyst. In a glass case of emotion since 1978.

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