Largest Crowd Ever for Urban League Annual Luncheon
It was the largest crowd ever to attend an Urban League luncheon in the organization’s 70-year history last Friday during the Annual Luncheon & Glorifying the Lions Ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. The Urban League of Greater Southwestern Ohio kicked off its 70th Anniversary year with recognition of the 2019 Lion Honorees and Transformational Partners, a keynote address by retired Urban League President & CEO Donna Jones Baker, and special remarks by Urban League Interim President & CEO Chara Fisher Jackson. There were 800 guests on hand to join in the celebration.
Special guests included retired Greater Cincinnati Urban League President & CEO Sheila Adams, retired Dayton Urban League President Willie Walker and City Council Member P.G. Sittenfeld who presented Baker with a proclamation from the City of Cincinnati. Local 12 Anchor Kyle Inskeep served as Master of Ceremony.
Drummers dressed in African attire escorted the Lion honorees to their seat. This year’s honorees are:
· Dr. Ralph Brown, retired government supervisory Veterinary Medical Officer for the USDA.
· Patricia Meadows, a retired Executive Director of the National Conference for Community and Justice of Greater Dayton.
· Richard “Dick” Rosenthal, former president and owner of F&W Publishing Corp. Rosenthal also endowed the Lois and Richard Rosenthal Institute for Justice in 2014, which has been instrumental in the release of 24 innocent people wrongly convicted in Ohio since 1994.
· Morleen “Moe” Rouse, retired educator, communication consultant, community volunteer and founder of Mannequin Charity boutique.
Baker congratulated this year’s honorees and thanked the community for supporting the Urban League during her 15-year tenure as president & CEO. Baker says she is proud of the League’s publication of The State of Black Cincinnati in 2015 and The State of Black Dayton in 2017 as well as the expansion of the agency to Dayton.
“I am proud that we have grown the Urban League from a budget of $2.5 million in 2003 to a $6 million-plus budget today, from a staff of 25 to a staff of about 60 today,” Baker said.
The Urban League also thanked Transformational Partners who made a gift of $50,000 or more to the agency in 2018 including Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Fifth Third Bank, KeyBank, Mercy Health, Procter & Gamble and UC Health.
The League launched its 70th Anniversary Campaign during the luncheon to raise $70,000 to support the League’s various programs.
“Money raised during the yearlong effort will go toward job training, business development, and entrepreneurship and advocacy programs,” Jackson explained.
The Dayton Urban League - chartered in 1947 and the Urban League of Greater
Cincinnati – chartered in 1949 were formally combined into the Urban League of Greater Southwestern Ohio (ULGSO) in 2013. ULGSO serves people in the following areas: Cincinnati and Dayton, the northern most sections of Boone, Kenton and Campbell Counties in Kentucky, and Ohio counties of Butler, Warren, Clermont, Montgomery, Greene, Preble, Miami, Hamilton and Darke.