Tavis Smiley Foundation, summer meals program and Oprah Winfrey

Juliana Norwood | 6/13/2013, midnight


Tavis Smiley


The Tavis Smiley Foundation is accepting applications for the 2013 Leadership Institute, Teens: Too Important to Fail, scheduled for July 26-29 on the UCLA campus. The four-day program for teens, ages 13-18, includes leadership training workshops, a community-service project and sessions on youth advocacy, education and civic engagement. The cost is $400 (early bird registration) before June 30 and includes housing, meals and workshops. Late registration is $450. The deadline is July 20. To register, visit www.rsvpbook.com/LeadershipInstitute. To date more than 4,000 youth have participated in the Leadership Institute. Alumni include young people like Detroit native Victor Marsh, a deputy political chief for the U.S. Department of State, assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Cyprus, and Philadelphia native Jordan Harris whose election in 2012 made him one of the youngest ever elected officials serving as a Pennsylvania state representative for the 186th District in Philadelphia.

Officials from the Food Services Division of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) announced its summer meal services program. More than 520,000 students in LAUSD qualify for free or reduced-price meals during the school year, but many do not get enough to eat when school is out. The program ensures that low-income children continue to grow and learn through good nutrition during the months when school closes. Rendered by the Food Services Division, Beyond the Bell Branch, Extended School Year and Credit Recovery Groups, the program will operate at select schools and serve students between the ages of 1 and 18, whether or not they participate in academic or recreational activities. For most participating schools, the summer meal program will run through Aug. 1. The program may be extended at select schools. For a list of participating schools visit www.cafe-la.lausd.net.


Oprah Winfrey

District of Columbia

Oprah Winfrey has given $12 million to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, now under construction on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The Smithsonian announced the gift, which is the largest donation the museum has received. In recognition, the museum’s 350-seat theater, intended to be a showcase for demonstrating how African American culture has shaped the country and the world, will be named after her.

The National Bar Association’s affiliate chapter, the J.L. Turner Legal Association, has filed a complaint against 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Edith Jones challenging the jurist’s remarks given at The Federalist Society at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Law in February. In her speech, Judge Jones expressed her thoughts as it relates to race, crime and the death penalty. Judge Jones stated that “racial groups like African Americans and Hispanics are predisposed to crime,” and that these groups are “prone to commit acts of violence.” Additionally, Judge Jones stated, that claims of racism, innocence, arbitrariness, and international standards are simply “red herrings” used by opponents of capital punishments. NBA President John E. Page stated, “The National Bar Association supports our affiliate chapter, the J.L. Turner Legal Association, in their efforts to demand that Judge Jones be held accountable for her remarks, which are unacceptable.” The J.L. Turner Legal Association is among many civil rights groups that have filed a complaint against Judge Jones who has been mentioned as being on the list of potential nominees to the Supreme Court of the United States.