North Carolina Newspapers

A year later,, the
Gulf Coast's
recovery is still
agonizingly slow
Johnson C. Smith’s
Golden Bulls, fresh off
their first win since 2003,
will go for their second
victory in a row Saturday
against Glenville (WV)
looks to
Members in line
for leadership if
Democrats win
House tnajority
By Hazel Trice Edney
WASfflNGTON - For years,
members of the
Black Caucus have
introduced key eco
nomic, civil rights,
criminal justice and
health care bills
that have been dis
cussed at length at
CBC Annual
Legislative Weekends rather than
on the House or Senate floors.
. The racial profiling, reparations
and felony disenfranchisement
bills of Rep. John Conyers (D-
Mich.); the predatory lending bill
of Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C); the
mandatory minimrun sentence
bill of Rep. Maxine Waters (D-
Calif); the miTiimuTn wage bill of
Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) and
the health care disparities and
anti-AIDS bills of Donna
Please see CAUCUS/3A
Doug Jones is among a growing number of middle-class professional African Americans who
are buying into Charlotte’s inner city neighborhoods.
Taking a bite
from urban core
Still-affordable real estate and upscale amenities are
attracting middle-class African Americans to inner city
Merged advocacy
groups speak with one
voice for education
A task force on Charlotte-Mecklenburg
Schools are betting a bi^er advocacy group
is better.
The task force announced the formation
Tiiesday of Mecklenburg Citizens for Public
Education, a merger of four
nonprofit groups. Charlotte
Advocates for Education, the
Education Program of the
Charlotte Chamber of [
Commerce, Charlotte-
Mecklenburg Public Schools
Foundation and the task
“This merger is very impor
tant to continuing improvement in our
schools,” said Cathy Bessant,
co-chair of the citizens task I
force with Harvey Gantt. “The
work of the CMS Task Force
and that of other committed
citizens in the community is
converging and givirg rise to a
new force in the education
James Woodward, chancel
lor emeritus at UNC Charlotte and chair
man of the merged board of directors, said
the commission wiU be a “critical fiiend” to
CMS by pushii^ for accoimtability and
“In order to be successful, you have to look
for partnerships, you have to look for com
mon ground. That’s what I intend to do as
board chair. TOIl he have some disagree
ments? Sure, we’U have some disagree
ments. But I fully expect there will be more
Please see SCHOOL/2A
By Herbert L. White
Docg Jones loves McCrorey
The neighborhood is within
walkirg distance of center city
and the homes are affordable.
The nei^ibors are fiiendly and
“The peofde are just unbe
lievable,” said Jones, a real
estate broker who moved to
Charlotte from Washington,
•D.C., seven years ago. “It
reminds me of the neighbor
hood I grew up in.”
Middle-class Afiican
Americans are bringing new
life to inner city communities
once threatened with ectinc-
tion or neglect. Whether
they’re rdiabilitating bunga
lows or moving into new con
dos, black Charlotteans are
taking advantage of some of
the b^ land buys in the city
“We’re finding a lot of black
buppies sayir^ We don’t want •
to move out to the suburbs, I
want to be able to walk to work
or the (Carolina) Panthers
game or the (Charlotte)
Please see TAKING/3A
Urban League chief Madine Fails calls it a career
Over 20-year career, she boosted jobs programs, new giving for nonprofit agency
By Herbert L. White
After 20 years, the Urban
League of the Central
Carofinas will have a new
Madine Fails, president and
CEO of the Urban League since
1986, has resigned. Her last
day was Wednesday
“After 20 years, it’s just time
for a change,” she said.
Fails’ tenure includes the
addition of jobs programs for
the underemployed and unem
ployed, as well as a $2.3 million
capital campaign to build a new
headquarters uptown.
“There’s a lot to be done,” she
said. “The only thing Ive done,
hopefifily is change some lives
for the better.”
Gene Buccelli has been
named interim president until
a successor is found.
Fails said she hasn’t decided
on what she’ll do next, or even if
she’ll remain in Charlotte.
“I’m not sure,” she said. “I’m
unsure about a lot of fhit^.”
The nert director will inherit
major, challenges, Fails said.
including maintainii^ cor
porate and community sup
port for its programs as well
as advocatir^ for economic
“I don’t think the mission
is going to change,” she
said. “Somebody’s stQl going
to have to advocate for peo
ple who haven’t gotten a fife
chance yet.”
For families of
autistic kids, a
place of comfort
By Herbert L. White
herb. v\ri/fe®Jhecr)ar/o
Mariame BoujlLl’s days are full tak
ing care of her son, Zachary
His autism makes them more chal
Boujlil, foimder of World Alliance for
Families and Children, learned about
Zachary’s ailment last year. Autism
has no cure and 1 in 166 U. S. children
- mostly boys - develop it. Zachary
has difficulty communicating, is dis
tant to physical contact and attracted
to touchir^ objects. Caring for him is
physically and mentally demanding,
Boujlil said.
‘When you deal with a child with
autism, it’s like dealing with three
, Please see HELP/2A
Preseason finale more
than dress rehearsal
for many of youngest
Panihers/Page 1C
Life IB
Religion 4B
Sports 1C
Business 6C
Classified 3D
naoF^ .1- iijjiiMi
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