Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. Center for Education, Justice and Ethics 2018 Reception

So I have the honor and pleasure of
serving as the Director of Programs for the Alexander Williams Jr. Center for
Education, Justice, and Ethics my name is Cameron van Patterson, and next month
will mark one year here with the University of Maryland and the Judge
Williams Center and I am just so excited to be part of
the legacy of Judge Williams and there are many chapters yet written that the
center is going to be authoring in the future but I want to take this time to
welcome you and thank you for making time out of your day out of your lives
out of your schedules to join us we know that there are many things happening
many demands on your time and you yet you are here with us this evening to
recognize individuals and organizations that we believe are doing a tremendous
work here in Maryland and indeed throughout the world and so this evening
we are beginning a new chapter this evening marks the inaugural lecture
series the judge Alexander Williams jr. lecture which is
going to be an annual event and you are here at the beginning with us and we
appreciate that we appreciate that let me begin by just a few program notes
unfortunately our master of ceremony Michelle D Barnard is unable to be here
this evening she had a medical emergency late last night and so she was not able
to join us today but I believe she is going to be okay and we are praying for
her and I thought so her this evening I will be standing in
for miss Bernard and I want to just take this opportunity briefly to pause take a
breath and take inventory of this moment that we’re living in this space that
we’re in right now it’s very important that we recognize the season that we’re
in and we’re gonna be talking about the relevance of the center to this this
chapter this season that we’re in but I want to point to the words of Justice
Marshall who once said that where you see wrong or inequality or injustice
speak out because this is your country this is your democracy make it protect
it pass it on very sage words sage words
and I think very timely so it’s just something to reflect on this evening as
we talk about the importance of ethical leadership and civic responsibility at
this time I would like to invite the president of our Board of Directors mr.
Craig long to the stage and he’s going to discuss the mission of the center Thank You Cameron you know this is the
second larger venue and I see all these folks that have had these long
relationship with judge Williams and I sit back and reflect on my own because
it’s been almost 20 years since I was fortunate to be selected to serve as a
judicial law clerk to judge Williams and I remember those times in his chambers
like it was yesterday and you know when I think back and reflect on those what’s
interesting though is that my recollection of those times was not was
less about the cases that we saw or the opinions that we wrote but more about
the discussions that we had and the wisdom that he aparted to me and my law
clerk during those period of times as even in the little things you know when
when judge would give tours followed by civic lessons to the hundreds of
students he opened his chambers to in his courtroom too and for those kids who
otherwise would not get to see the legal system from that perspective but instead
were generally coming to court to see one of their family members being hauled
off to jail and just those experience that he provided and those things that
he imparted just stood out to me and what stood out to me the most and was
how he handled the litigants before him the cases that he had in front of him
and regardless of the issues that he was facing you got a sense of the role that
the judge took most seriously and that was to be fair and to be equitable he
was keenly aware the inequalities in society and saw firsthand the many
disparities in our justice system as it pertains to people of color
underrepresented and underserved including the minimum or the mandatory
minimum sentence guidelines that he was bound to follow and it was while then he
would encourage Jessica and I to do our parts in addressing those inequalities
the judge never took himself out of that you see while many would see federal
judgeship as the pinnacle of a legal career he saw his legacy as being more
than a historic political victory or decades on the bench he was Restless
and he saw the need to do more and he regularly talked about wanting to start
in an organization that could affect change through scholarly research and
providing a forum for discussing the prevailing issues facing underserved and
historically disadvantaged communities particularly in Prince George’s County
and Maryland but ultimately in the country and across the world so when the
judge called me I’ll never forget that time in 2012 and told me that he was
stepping down he was gonna tender his resignation to President Obama in his
last year I was honored when he asked me to serve as his president and it’s so
amazing how I look now how much this Center has accomplished in such a short
period of time from the work that it’s done with the reentry of former
offenders to society and the community out rich a community outreach and civic
engagement in Baltimore in Prince George’s County – the impact that the
judge is having now and has had through his commissions and now we are here
kicking off our inaugural lecture series and taking one step further
to the judge realizing his vision and his lifelong mission so again I want to
thank you all for coming we certainly appreciate your support you know you’re
a constant encouragement to the judge into the center and we just look forward
to so much more that we’re gonna have and and I just want again and welcome
you to our inaugural lecture series so at this point I would say if you could
direct your attention to the screen we have a little bit of a video
presentation for you my first met judge witness was in 2004 I
was brought before him because I had been lumped into a conspiracy and I felt
that the overall circumstances did not warrant a life sentence tempted to give
him a sentence below that and the United States Court of Appeals directed that I
give him a life sentence and I put on the record at sentencing that I didn’t
like that I committed the crime and I had to pay for my crime but life
plus 10 years for 60 grams of crack cocaine that’s kind of unbelievable in
my heart I knew that judge Williams tried to do the best he could I thanked
him for trying to give me a lesser sentence I sent out a letter on his
behalf I was excited when President Obama wrote him back and commuted a
sentence to time served he’s now back in the community and he’s a helping
individual similarly situated my time here now is to give back there are men
and women that aren’t concentrated now that need a voice I want to make sure
that they have and I that they have somebody they can come to
you ladies and gentlemen mr. Evans ray jr. hi Esther ah Jerry Hanson so sorry I
couldn’t be there in person I always work hello everyone I have tears in my
eyes she was 96 that was my grandmother she died about three weeks ago guess who
came Jose Williams you can’t tell me that this young man
doesn’t have a hug for all walks of life not just you don’t see color and this is
my opinion and I dealt with him personally he sees human beings and he’s
fair I don’t know much about him but I know I wouldn’t be standing here if it
weren’t for that letter and I’m grateful for him his wife his family his kids oh
you know judge Williams he’s a DC native graduated from public schools graduated
from how three degrees three got three degrees earned including his law degree
first family member to graduate from college his wife Joyce is in the
audience hello miss Joyce I just want to come down and hug you cuz you got a heck
of a husband so I know you have to be a hell of a woman yes three sons eight grandchildren he
came to PG County to further his career in the legal field and has done an
awesome job he works on all sides of criminal
defense attorney and public defender prosecutor press Georgia’s first
african-american elected at the state’s attorney federal judge over 20 years he
called the shots the balls two strikes that’s a file he was dead and he was
fair and I can say that because I dealt with and I will never ever forget
a statement that was made in court going through trial prosecutor soldiers with
me had to give me life took his glasses all and said this my courtroom Jimmy
I’ll have to give him like he said and gave me a different time he said if
y’all don’t like it appealing you got five days where they appealed
and I ended up with life plus ten years which it’s in here and you guys have
read it and I he put on the record he said I felt like it was cruel and usual
punishment and I was like wow I’m looking at I’m like okay you really know
that this was unfair so what he told me was that I need to go inside this prison
and do what I’m supposed to do and that’s what I tried to do I started
programs helping brothers that couldn’t read couldn’t write in AAA because it’s
everybody any I form groups so big and all I kept in mind was that this is
judge stuck up for me so what can I do to help somebody else I’m a fairly
religious man and there’s a scripture they are companions ready to crush one
another but there’s a friend who sticks closer than a brother man I love you I
mean everything that you do the people that you help it’s something in here
both letters I went over here to College Park for him we had to do an interview
with a news station and he was at his desk so when I read what I was looking
at in here today it said people write him from institution and he reads the
letters I personally watched them he touched me
again so I’m thinking so when we write a judge I’ll just take if there’s any more
judges in here which I know it is yeah I’ll take the letter throw it to the
side you know or the clerk get it and nobody else
y’all don’t see it that’s not true now watch this man open up a letter and he
said I’m have to write him back he might not even remember that but I remember I
just said I just wow judge Williams you you you
you are everything that that you portray that you you said in records like they
say the footsteps in the sand I’m following yours like I don’t have no
choice because at the end of the day you’re here to help people like myself
it’s all walks of life incarcerated they need a voice they need someone to
advocate for them they need somebody that’s sincerely wants to help and
returning citizens all of them not bad all I’m not good but I think judge
Williams know who was who I believe that in my heart when you can look at a
person and you say wow I think this man got a chance well I think this woman got
a chance and not only with the men and women that are in jail he didn’t forget
the parents that look out for the kids that are incarcerated he didn’t forget
the kids he didn’t forget anybody long story short his interest is
assisting in reform in criminal justice helping those returning from prison and
those with records inspiring young people and working to reduce mandatory
minimum sentences that’s the judge Williams I know and I want to give him a
hand this is not me when I speak and I speak
to a lot of people I speak from here a little bit about me December 16 2004 we
caught a case and a conspiracy had a mr. out it George Williams took me out the
case severed me come March it’s time for the second trial we do the second trial
everything is is going fine got a chance to win got an entrapment defense can’t
tell you I mean George wind just felt like it was entrapment there we went
through everything I ended up with life plus 10 years he recommended that I go
to Cumberland FCI I never forget that the prosecutor said why are you sending
them to Cumberland they said cuz I want him to get the 500-hour program
prosecutors say he no drug addict the judge said well his wife said he drink a
little liquor and they put me here for cover and five hundred our program you
know so we did that I got them moving around through the system that’s when I
started programming programming programming long story short I wrote a
letter to Obama in June of 2006 in May of 2016 and I didn’t mention anything
about clemency nor did I know that judge Williams had wrote a letter for me Obama
and his wife wrote me back June the 25th saying thank you for the letter mr. ray
we appreciate it never telling me I’m going home and I told him I said I’m
still gonna be a behind this wall helping the men and women back here to
need help mr. Obama and August the third came a letter came when I got the letter
was a yellow envelope like this from President Obama in the White House and I
got nervous I’m wondering gods was like what bow bombing doing writing you
I said why wouldn’t he write me up somebody come somebody I am somebody
but yes ma’am we all love somebody this thing is about each one teach one and
that’s what this young man does that’s my format each one teach one it
don’t ain’t no big guys a little use when it
comes to him it’s about helping others this is a letter from Obama
I’ll let the judge read it first it’s short and I’m gonna get off this podium
I don’t know who knows his wife probably know once I came home went to the
halfway house I was diagnosed with third stage rectal cancer don’t worry about
I’m a fighter the 12 years ain’t killed me ain’t nothing all killed then I got
God in my life and I Circle myself around good people I went through
surgery at ten o’clock one morning I came out six in the evening never been
cut stabbed or anything in prison got the biggest car in the world on my
stomach but I went through chemotherapy because they said that I had to get they
had to get it out of me because it was it was that bad lo and behold judge
Williams he’s just awesome get a call speak to the judge tell me to stay in
prayer i man his family prayers I mean he just told me he’d gotten and I
believe I was supposed to stay in the hospital for two weeks I was out in five
days walking around the hospital holding the back of my whip with the IV I don’t
want nobody see my buns Jimmy so we get to all that I come home I go through
chemotherapy six months the mayor gave me a job in DC prior to that they kept
my job for me I was gone nine months that was my this is my first good
government job and they love me and I love them prior to that job I come out
of there George Williams I talked to him we speak
he showed me nothing but love and respect and he said man you’re gonna be
fine and coming from him was an honor and a pleasure so the day I say to
everybody in here we need more men like him I’m not saying
they’re not in here but he’s gonna be outspoken about his stand for something
when you fall for anything this brother standing for something and I respect it
and guess what I’m just a little fellow but I’ve been around some big fellas and
some beautiful women and I want to tell all young I’m grateful for everybody
being here hearing me the judge told me just speak but I think it’s his turn so
we’ll vote any further dude the man at out George Alexander Williams thank you thank you
Evans Wray for that very kind introduction I’m humbled and grateful
for your words and I’m very appreciative of your story and our relationship the
issues we work on together fall clearly within the mission of the judge
Alexander Williams jr. Center on education justice and ethics and we
thank all of you all for coming today but way of background the judge
aww Center was invited about two years ago to become a part of the academic
program here at the University of Maryland College Park
the person who reached out to me about two years ago and convinced me to become
a part of this great university as a president of the University of Maryland
who as most of us now know has been in the news as of late dr. Wallace LOH
epitomizes dr. Wallace LOH epitomizes something
that dr. Martin Luther King once said and I quote be conscious ask the
question is it right if there comes a time when we must take a position that
is neither safe nor political or popular but one must take it because it is right
before delivering this lecture please allow me to take the personal privilege
of inviting dr. Wallace LOH the president of the University of Maryland
to bring greetings on this wonderful evening dr. LOH thank you judge Williams this is a
wonderful event there’s fantastic hors d’oeuvres
and if I’ve discovered nothing is for free so I’m happy to say a few words
judge Williams as the price for admission to this very special event
thank you all for being here and supporting the work of the center very
briefly this is the Alex Williams judge Alex Williams jr. Center for Education
justice and ethics and look at the order of those words what is the link between
education on the one hand which is the mission of this university and ethics
because to educate somebody without educating that person in what’s right it
what’s ethical is potentially to educate somebody who’s a menace to society and
the link between education and doing what’s right it’s justice fairness
treating people equally I am so honored and pleased that we have judge Alex
Williams jr. as a center at this university and let me just conclude by
saying I am very very eager to hear your remarks your remarks about ethical
leadership and civic responsibility especially in these incredibly fraud
times when we are in effect fighting for the heart and soul of our democracy and
we need people with the values and the ethics of the commitments such as Judge
Alex Williams to lead us forward thank you very much for bringing your Center
here we just emerged from an emotional and
grueling election I’ll leave to the pundits and the competing sides to put
their spin and spins on the implications of the election what of course is clear
yet disheartening is that America remains deeply and bitterly divided and
we wonder how long and what it will take for healing among the challenging and
bifurcating issues and matters we confront across this country today
include the matter of developing a fair immigration and migrant policy the
matter of the daunting task of admission officials charged with considering
diversity and merit and background and test scores and other factors trying to
achieve a balanced and fair policy for admission to colleges universities and
professional schools the matter of voting redistricting partisan
gerrymandering and the related claims of fraud voter intimidation and other
tactics of voter suppression the matter of security and guns and the horrific
violence and incidents of domestic terrorism possibly influenced by the
threat of social media or driven by either a culture of hate anger hostility
bigotry extremism racism trappings of anti-semitism most recently seen and the
sending of pipe bombs to two former presidents and other prominent persons
in the news the Pittsburgh killing leaving twelve dead in a place of
worship the shooting and killing of two African
Americans at a grocery store outside of Louisville Kentucky and just last night
the latest mass killing of 12 at the border line bar and grill in Thousand
Oaks California where a gunman using smoke grenades and a semi-automatic
handgun fired upon college students dancing and having fun the matter of
increasing persons with mental and behavior challenges in this country the
matter of the increasing polarization political rancor demagoguery partisan
rhetoric and other divisions which encourage an environment of lawlessness
and other divisions which encourage an environment where people don’t respect
the opinions of others the matter of the criminal justice reform and addressing
the alarming rate of incarceration and the disparate impact of the criminal
justice system on people of color the matter of the Rif and schism schism
rather in police community relations and finally the matter of bridging
disparities and gaps gaps in wealth gaps in social and economic equality gaps in
the delivery of adequate health care for everybody
gaps in access to the digital age and gaps in achievement of a meaningful
education oh what a complex and ethical dilemma
still before 64 years after the Supreme Court in Brown versus the Board of
Education ordered the states to integrate public schools and their
jurisdictions at all deliberate speed despite Brown the country simply has not
eliminated the vestiges a former de jure segregation and so many
systems school systems in this country continue to maintain dual systems of
Education and the desegregation plans and other policies have simply been
ineffective these are just what a few of the hot-button issues of our time before
us we cannot turn a blind eye to these difficult divisive and emotional issues
nor can we think that the passage of time will automatically erase the
divisions the violence and the madness in my view the notion of civil
engagement is a far better solution to begin to address many of these problems
what is civil engagement civil engagement is getting involved it
includes collaboration by various stakeholders and facets in the community
to develop influence and promote policies and goals and values which
benefit society and improve the public good through activating our minds
employing our energies engaging our resolves and resources to solve common
problems those of us civilly engaged can make a difference we can advance the
public good and values of the community we can improve the quality of life and
the society at large civic engagement takes many forms it’s volunteering its
mentoring its voting is philanthropy it is providing leadership it is educating
it is attending a community meeting it is serving as an activist it is
advocating or both proposing initiatives which prick one’s interests be it
political social genomic environmental educational all of
which raise the quality of life and benefit the interests of society the
hallmark of any Great Society is measured by the extent and degree of
involvement or engagement in activities and projects benefiting the community
and advancing the public good now beyond individual citizens
there are mounds of stakeholders who are positioned to contribute to civil
engagement they include the business retail and corporate community the
faith-based community the general media and entertainment communities as well as
social media companies computer and high-tech companies community centers
and organizations professional associations nonprofits and feelin’s
tropical organizations other stakeholders include the entities
providing and contributing to the delivery of health care services and the
educational and academic community just a name of few in fact
with reference to the university community
just this past spring semester dr. Wallace Lowe the president of the
University of Maryland College Park emphasized the focus on quote do good
initiatives under the rubric of civic engagement for the campus and university
community at large but in this inaugural address this evening let me lift up just
for a few more minutes the role of two stakeholders one the responsibility of
citizens and their role in the context of civil engagement and second the
importance of leadership and the ethical responsibility of public service and its
relevance to civic engagement let me preface my
reports as to the responsibilities of role of citizens by acknowledging the
excitement at witnessing a record turnout both in the early voting and at
the polls this past Tuesday 113 million citizens cast ballots this past midterm
election particularly encouraging is the large increase of young people
registering and participating in the election I listened with interest at the
report that 19 black women who ran to become judges all one in Houston Texas my hope is that this voting outpouring
continues in future elections my fear is that the sole reason motivating many to
vote was based primarily on whether one approved or disapproved of the action
statements and decisions of the person occupying the White House in terms of
citizen responsibility it appears to me that the lack of significant civil
engagement is often driven by the fact that life has become comfortable to many
of us so much so that we are wrapped up in our own everyday routine lives and we
show little motive to engage and to volunteer and to get involved the great
challenge is to address the complacency of our citizens who feel they have in me
and therefore go about their living carefree as a bedroom community
unconcerned about who is elected and oblivious to
performance of public leadership we tend to voice our concerns or show passion or
energy only when something suddenly hits us like a reduction of trash pickups or
pending increase in our property tax rate civic engagement starts with
exercising the right to vote some only vote when prodded to do so by Oprah
Winfrey or Taylor Swift contrary to the turnout the past Tuesday
far too many citizens are stuck in complacency historically do not vote
have no interest in participating in midterms or state and local elections do
not take the time to research the qualification and record of candidates
on the ballot and they know very little about the issue surrounding the election
the challenges are clear how can we get more citizens to become more involved
and generate a passion for removing the barriers to complacency how can we as
part of our civic engagement responsibilities encourage more citizens
to volunteer and give back what kind of activism must be employed to hold our
public officials accountable and to make sure that elected officials are prepared
and are vigilant fearless and effective in challenging unfair barriers and
raising the right questions on behalf of their constituencies and more
importantly how can we bridge the generation gap and bring forth the
millenniums who enjoy digital comfort in expertise and the older generations who
possess some historical context bringing them together to learn from each other
in a common goal to assist individuals and the communities in reaching
potential and addressing challenges we must get better informed and educated
with respect to the issues affecting us except as I said earlier for some crisis
which hits us and where we simply react instead of being more proactive we
simply are not involved if I were to momentarily put on my professorial hats
and give a quiz and ask each of you here this evening
to name your school board district your council matic district your legislative
district and your congressional district wherein you reside or if I ask you in
this quiz to name your school board representative your county or city
legislative representative your state senator and your three delegates to the
General Assembly from your district I suspect that beyond perhaps naming the
governor and two other senators perhaps your congressperson
maybe the county exec or mayor many of us here without doing any research are
unable to pass my quiz how many here have received calls from friends around
election time asking you who shall I vote for many public officials across
this country often get elected and stay in office because of our own apathy and
lack of interest in getting information civic engagement therefore is essential
to generate community interests and to provide critical information on issues
important to citizens our community in Maryland and for that matter most of the
country have too many uninformed citizens who do not know what is going
on and some quite frankly don’t give a damn there are no adequate or cogent
reasons for individuals not registering and not participating in elections
claiming that their vote will not mean anything or we have no effect on their
status or fearing that one may be called to jury duty or not showing at the polls
because it’s raining or they don’t have time or there’s a skeptic scheduling
conflict or you don’t believe in the political system
those are inadequate reasons for not voting citizen engagement and involvement is
the key to motivating our citizens to participate and to understand the
relevant issues which impact our community and helping them appreciate
the importance of electing responsible representatives and leadership in public
office now before concluding with a few remarks on the other stakeholder that is
public leadership let me say something about the relationship between civil
rights and civic responsibilities back in the 50s and 60s the focus was
primarily on civil rights through struggle and sacrifice sweat and blood
and even some loss of life by dedicated in responsible civil rights warriors
significant civil rights protections such as the 1964 Civil Rights Act and
the Voting Rights Act of 65 have been enacted the focus now is to consider
what being responsible means today being responsible includes moving from a
primary civil rights focus to more of a civic and civil responsibility mode let
me be specific previously the underserved and disadvantaged
communities had no influence no ballot no jobs no money no political
representation no right to vote unable to go to certain schools again this
forum or open notorious and legally sanctioned status of exclusion and
denial has been changed basic civil rights do currently exist while there
are many more and new challenges of injustice to be addressed we must
recognize that people previously excluded now whole positions in public
and private leadership those previously denied the right of
can vote people formally with little education or little means to get
education they do have more education and they do possess the right to go to
school and learn and many people who formerly were penniless now possess a
few dollars and have resources to create a kind of community that is much more
fair than just and what it was through legislation litigation Court decisions
policies executive orders and sweat and tall basic civil rights are now in place
yet civil rights these games without the follow-through of civil and civic
responsibilities are meaningless the emphasis therefore is to shift from
civil rights to civil responsibilities that means in my view requiring people
in positions of leadership and responsibility to make a difference the
question will speak out where appropriate to create opportunities to
change the current culture to help fairly distribute and reallocate
resources and to make a way to make education politics and economics work
and communities that formerly were the victim of injustice and fairness and
unfairness this is the essence of the responsibility and obligation that comes
with having the privilege of being a public service to bring they must bring
changes in the business-as-usual culture they must shift from victimization to
being agents and catalysts for change they must develop a passion to represent
to reach out to level the playing field and to do what is ethically the right
thing to do so that being said civil engagement does embrace a key role for
those in public service candidates running for office must offer and
provide not vague but detailed information with respect to
their specific strategies for addressing the critical issues and challenges that
we as citizens and consistents constituents confront this is not the
easy task and public officials must not sink to the plateau of mediocrity but
they must muster up the energy the commitment and the preparation that
ethically represent their constituencies I served in public office for 32 years I
was a chairman of the Washington suburban Sanitary Commission twice
elected as the state’s attorney for Prince George’s County and nominated and
confirmed for a lifetime federal appointment on the United States
District Court for the District of Maryland
but I had to constantly remind myself that I was not there just in search of a
title or power or prestige or to beat my chest with self-centeredness or to run
for office to earn a lucrative salary or to get a sign the county car or special
tags or some other perks and reasons to feed my own ego those things were
certainly wonderful and I enjoyed those amenities but what I discovered early in
my public service was that anyone elected or appointed to public service
is required to work hard and to prepare and put in long dedicated in tireless
hours and to ask questions and to make a difference and no one fully understand
the full reach and implication of proposed bills and policies public
leadership muscle short on behalf of their consistence that there is a fair
allocation of resources and tax revenues from the state in the county and
municipality so us to reach all communities in areas of transportation
delivery of health care security employment
and education in particular moreover a key mentoring role of an elected public
official is to convince our students our children that education is not a
sentence to be served but it’s an opportunity to be seized it’s nichole
public leadership must reject the notion of always adopting the status quo and
getting preoccupied with self-preservation
they must be proactive rather than always reacting to sporadic fire
suddenly arising ethical public leadership must be unafraid of reprisals
if they take a position inconsistent with their party line those in public
office must lead the way they’ve got the law of the temperature in today’s
political climate they must tone down the reading when necessary they must put
aside where you can differences develop relationships set a new norm of partisan
cooperation find common ground and collaborate with others to develop to
propose to promote policies and positive changes which further the overall public
good civic engagement requires that elected leadership are reefs act
responsibly and professionally in discharging their public duties they
will shape the character of dialogue they must set a new tone and marlowe a
professionalism and justice and fairness so that all citizens can reach their
potential and the overall health of the community is advanced finally elected
officials must provide the moral guidance and the moral compass
demonstrated by way of their actions involvement and activism duty demands
that public leadership developed a strategy
to transform the present trajectory of complacency I don’t is and inactivity of
citizens and steer those citizens toward civic engagement this kind of leadership
by public officials is an important component an ingredient of civil
engagement I trust that I am not discouraging persons from considering
public service this evening but it is important that the exercise of this kind
of ethical public leadership here in Maryland be the standard and serve as a
national model for ethical and responsible leadership on Capitol Hill
and throughout the entire nation I close by thanking each of you for joining me
this evening for this inaugural judge Alexander Williams lecture yes the
challenges before us today are enormous yet there’s no need to sit back and
become a casual observer we must energize ourselves and get busy
the great theologian Howard Thurman once wrote don’t ask what the world needs ask
what makes you come alive and go for it because what the world needs are people
who have come alive thank you so much for coming this evening and I appreciate
you listening to these words thank you judge Williams we’re now
moving the program to recognize individuals or organizations that are
doing good work in the community I’d like to invite dr. Patterson back up one
of the main anchors in judge Williams vision is highlighting those in the
community that exemplify the privileges I think they’re going to put up one of
the sides one of the pillars in terms of what the center is all about hearing
those words when we were working on this program the judge was very adamant that
he really wanted to highlight the work of the community and that’s gonna be one
of the mainstays you talked you heard him talk about it a little bit in his
lecture in terms of ego he’s really interested in and focused and motivated
and and appreciative he gets fuel for everything that he’s doing by seeing the
good works of others and so we’re very excited we have about five awards that
we want to try to highlight in the community dr. Patterson okay thank you Sydney
thank you judge and thank you mr. Rey for your comments I want to take a
moment here to call your attention to the back of your program just before you
see some of the sponsor organizations that have generously supported us this
evening there are some student groups who are tabling just beyond these doors
we encourage you after the presentations to stop and take note these are student
groups here at the University of Maryland who are doing exactly what
Judge William just spoke about and so we encourage you to stop by their tables
and learn a little bit more about what they’re doing the work they’re doing
with the do-good Institute I also want to continue to encourage you to support
the center we are very fortunate in that we have just established an endowment
fund for the judge Alexander Williams jr. Center and the endowment fund is
going to allow for us to continue the work and to build really an
institutional legacy that will continue to promote education justice and ethics
beyond our lifetimes and so you’ll be able to learn more about that and we’ll
have more information for you about that but please after the presentations take
time to stop and learn more about the endowment fund we have some colleagues
in the breezeway who will be there to assist you and share more information of
course your support is always always greatly appreciated as Cindy mentioned
we’re moving to the awards portion of our program and this is a really great
opportunity because it gives us a chance to recognize individuals and
organizations organizations that are already doing very very important work
and so you’re going to have an to learn a little bit about
organizations in the region some of the awardees that we’re recognizing this
evening are people and organizations that the center is already formed
partnerships with to move forward and implement programs in 2019 specifically
there are two areas we’re going to be focusing on in the coming calendar year
and that is mental health and wellness and awareness and also education
particularly thinking about how to better serve young men of color in
Baltimore and in Prince George’s County so definitely stay tuned and feel free
afterwards after the award presentations to remain and linger and enjoy the
beverages and talk and learn more about some of the organizations that we’re
going to be highlighting here this evening
okay without further ado I’d like to share a little bit about an organization
that’s going to be recognized this evening and they’re going to be
receiving the judge aw Center Education Award and there are some brief BIOS in
your program about these organizations I’m just going to share a little bit
with you about the holistic life foundation the holistic life foundation
is a Baltimore based nonprofit organization committed to nurturing the
Wellness of children and adults in underserved communities through a
Content comprehensive approach which helps children develop their inner lives
through yoga mindfulness and self-care holistic Life Foundation demonstrates a
deep commitment to learning community and stewardship of the environment the
foundation is also committed to developing high-quality evidence-based
programs and curriculum to improve community well-being
one of the things that’s so important about the holistic life foundation and
unfortunately our board member Christina rouse is travelling she’s on her way
here and she probably will be here a little shortly but the holistic life
foundation is taking on the problem mental health from a proactive position
you know really emphasizing wellness and mindfulness and what it means to work
with young people and help teach them the skills that are required to really
become capable and able to master themselves and master their emotions
develop that emotional intelligence and I just want to share a brief word that
our board member mr. aus wanted me to share with you all about the holistic
Life Foundation Katrina wrote I’m honored to introduce the holistic life
Foundation and their founders for many years the holistic Life Foundation has
provided mindful training to k-12 students in Baltimore City they serve 42
area schools 10,000 students a week and have trained and employed 30,000
Baltimore youth through this fine through their fine work they exemplify
the goals of the AAW Center and it is especially fitting that they receive
this award tonight at the University of Maryland where all three founders were
students on behalf of the entire board of directors of the judge aw cinder
congratulations we are inspired by your work with no further ado please join me
in welcoming Andres Gonzales co-founder of the holistic Life Foundation good evening how y’all doin today
alright alright it’s an honor to be here it really is a like truly an honor
myself the other two founders met each other here I mean they’re brothers but I
met them here and without this school we wouldn’t be doing the work we’re doing
making that impact all across the nation all across the world providing these
techniques I really don’t know how much time I have to talk a little bit of
while I was I wanted to lead y’all through a little practice to get
yourselves together is that cool if I do a little practice for everybody yeah all
right all right because I can tell you about what we do but I’d rather y’all
experienced a little something right some welcome y’all to get into a
comfortable seated position your head neck and spine aligned feet grounded on
the floor invite you to close your eyes if you feel comfortable doing so and
just start taking deep breaths in and out your nose as you inhale feel your
lungs expanding as you exhale push out any anxiety stress or worry out of your
body I’m invite you to use your imagination
and I want you to picture all those people that you love whether they’re
here far away whether they’re living we’re no longer living because remember
that love knows no boundaries and with your breath I want you to send
those people love do you happen to have a thought or distraction that comes
Jamaa and acknowledging let it pass and return back to that image of all those
people that you loved in which each breath I want you to send them love we’re going to continue to use our
imagination and now I want you to picture those people that stress you out
most people that get you angry that get you frustrated whether their friends
their family co-workers politicians and I want you to send those people love as
well you can imagine then their anger their hatred that they spread the only
way to conquer that is with love and they probably need it more than anybody
else so picture all those people that frustrates you to get you angry and be
the bigger person send those people love as well continue breathing nice long slow deep
breaths I want you to do one last thing for me tonight I want you to send love
to the most important person in the world and that is yourself so often we
pour out our love to everybody else and we forget to give love to ourselves I
may have been a long time since you told yourself that you love yourself that you
sent yourself love want you to feel that warmth the love giving it to yourself
the warmth of love in this room with all these wonderful dynamic people in which
each breath send yourself love I’ll invite you to bring your attention
back to yourselves and slowly start wiggling your fingers and your toes roll
around your wrists and your ankles take your time if you had your eyes closed
slowly slowly blink your eyes open and come back to your senses remember that
love is the most powerful force in the universe
together we can make impact it’s an honor to be here representing my
organization my other founders thank you so much for your time have a blast in
beautiful evening well I’m relaxed I don’t know about you
I’m ready okay thank you so much under this for that and for sharing one of
your practices at this time I’m going to invite another one of our board members
to come and present the award for justice ladies and gentlemen delegate
Eric Barron it’s been a rough week I needed that let me use my cheat sheet so
it excuse me I am pleased to present the aw Center justice award
Karen York Karen York is the executive director of the job opportunities task
force JLT F works to eliminate educational and employment barriers for
low-wage workers by transforming the systems and policies that create and
perpetuate those barriers since I’ve known Karen I personally seen her take
on legislation and policy issues on her shoulders with unbelievable skill
willpower intellect and passion I’d like to give you three brief examples the
Second Chance Act about one third of all American men have been arrested at some
point before the age of 23 the immediate consequences of crime are jail time
fines fees parole but a record also comes with penalties that can affect
nearly every aspect of a person’s life employment public assistance housing
voting rights the Second Chance Act was signed into law in 2015 and people are
now getting to take advantage of the opportunity to
wipe their slate clean with expungement and shielding this is because of Karen
York number two the Justice Reinvestment Act Karen was appointed as the only
community advocate and the only member of a non-profit to the justice
reinvestment Coordinating Council this was a bipartisan group of public
officials and justice experts brought together to make recommendations on the
reform of Maryland’s criminal justice system it was a nationwide data-driven
approach to improve public safety reduce corrections in spending and reinvest
savings and evidence-based strategies to decrease crime and reduce recidivism
these recommendations were put into legislation and has resulted in a fair
safer Maryland and has contributed to the state actually leading the nation in
reducing unnecessary incarceration that bill doesn’t pass the state’s
legislature without Karen York number three the Maryland fair access to
education Act the so-called ban the box on college applications the bill expands
access to education to returning citizens by moving the question of
criminal history to its appropriate place in the application process we know
that education is the key to exponentially reducing recidivism rates
and allowing returned citizens to be productive employed and move on from
their troubled past again this bill doesn’t get introduced let alone passed
and certainly doesn’t override the governor’s veto without Karen York dr.
King said and I’ll paraphrase if a woman is called to be a streetsweeper she
should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted or as Beethoven
composed music or as Shakespeare wrote she should sweep the streets so well
that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say hair lived a great
street sweeper who did her job well this is the spirit within which Karen takes
on her advocacy on behalf of the least of us I am pleased to present the aw
Center justice award to Karin York get there that was so nice thank you it
is such an honor to be here this evening to be honored with the Justice award on
behalf of the judge you know how we always have to look at the we have to
get it right the judge Alexander Williams jr. Center for Education
justice and ethics delegate Baron mentioned the justice reinvestment act
and if you indulge me I want to talk a bit about how I first met judge Williams
so during the Justice Reinvestment Act process there were a number of
recommendations that came out of the Coordinating Council but there was a
recommendation that was missing and delegate Barron and I really pushed to
ensure that this recommendation was included and this recommendation was the
elimination of mandatory minimums for drug offenders and the reason why we
felt that this was so important the reason why we felt that this is so
important was because if this is the Justice Reinvestment Act and we’re
seeking to reduce our prison population one of the easiest ways to do that is
eliminate mandatory minimums no-brainer another reason was that we found that
Maryland in terms of our mandatory minimums for drug offenders we were
actually worse off than Mississippi that is not something that we should be proud
of that is not something that we should brag about and it’s not something that
we can ignore given the fact that it was an overwhelming number of
african-american men that were caught up in these mandatory minimum sentences and
so delegate Barron as we were trying to figure out how we were going to push
this because no one was even trying to bring bring up mandatory minimums like
they weren’t even trying to hear it so delegate Barron said that we need to
bring some folks into the mix and so he was talking about this individual named
judge Alexander Williams so set up a lunch and Annapolis during session here
comes this guy with this country draw now delegate Baron said that he was from
Washington DC but I was like he is from Alabama where are you from judge
Williams is it really DC I mean I know that you know deceive
natives they do you know but I it was thick so we’re having lunch and I’ve
realized that why have I never why have I never worked with this individual
before just hearing his story was so extremely powerful and just the passion
that he talked about how unfair mandatory minimums were so then he
suggested that he bring in another colleague of his now this colleague I
actually know this colleague is Judge William Murphy who’s sitting to my left
now this is another icon another individual who has worked on behalf of
individuals in the criminal justice system and defended them and their
families and so we convene another lunch I’m under the impression that we’re
actually going to talk about how we’re gonna craft the language that’s gonna go
in the bill to eliminate mandatory minimums but if you have ever gotten
these two together we were not talking about the bill I was talking about the
bill they were bringing up stories from the 90s and the 2000s and everything
else they wanted to talk about but eventually we got to a point where I was
able to get them to commit to appearing on a panel to eliminate these mandatory
minimums and they’re extremely busy individuals so this was a really big
deal but there are two particular reasons why this was an extremely big
deal for me personally the first reason was because when you have individuals
like Judge Alexander Williams and Billy Murphy when you have them in front of a
committee and the passion that they speak the expertise that comes with the
experience of their work in the justice system it speaks volumes it speaks
volumes to the individuals in Annapolis who would not expect them to really be
that engaged in the legislative process at this point in their life but more
importantly the second point was that having those two particularly judge
Williams sitting on that panel with me urging for the elimination the
successful elimination of mandatory minimums was a big deal
me personally because I was a young policy leader and the fact that I could
have someone like him up there with me saying what I was saying validating not
just what I was saying but validating the fact that I belong to where I was it
sent a message to my colleagues in Annapolis that I had friends in high
places and this is someone you have to start respecting and that is so
invaluable judge Williams and I can I don’t think I’ve ever told you what that
has done for me both inside and outside of Annapolis so while I am so thankful
for this award I am more thankful for your leadership your counsel in your
friendship thank you please give Miss York another round of
applause this time I’m going to ask our board president Eric I’m so I Craig long
to come and present the award of the judge aw Center award for ethics I have
the honor of presenting the judge aw Center ethics award but before I do and
I think we’ve been a little remiss I just do want to acknowledge my board
member of my fellow board members of the aw Center that are here Sydney butcher
who you’ve already seen Joyce Williams Eric Barron James Benjamin if you’re
here please raise your hands Adrian Browns relief iya Franklin
Katrina rouse cut Wiley Sony Roz tang and Dana Williams without them honestly
we couldn’t do have this stuff there was a time when we didn’t have an a program
director in any one lead mess and we were having to do a lot of this
ourselves so it’s it’s just great to be at this point now here so I do have the
honor to present this ethics award and it’s it’s near and dear to my heart or
should I probably say near and dear to my soul because this next award
recipient is Pastor John Cage Incans senior the pastor of First Baptist
Church at Glen on which I am a member pastor Jenkins has been preaching the
good news since he was licensed as a minister in 1973 at the age of 15 in
1988 he became the senior pastor for First Baptist Church of Glen Arden and
by God’s grace his church membership grew from 500 to more than 10,000 today
for those of you that don’t live in the county this is a large Church with a lot
of congregants and it is a church that when you ask people where they go they
have a lot to say about this church because he has done a lot of good work
he today he has 11,000 people attend his weekly services between two campuses
located in the suburbs of Washington DC one of the things that I grew up in and
in churches my family a my my I guess it’s since a family business to a degree
my grandfather my great-grandfather we can go back about four or five
generations of pastors and what kind of struck me about coming the First Baptist
Church in Glen Arden and always coming through the Baptist Church was just how
tech savvy he was it kind of spoke to me a little bit from that side of me and he
is a tech savvy minister he embraces technology through his ministry by
reaching Souls and global ways he believes that the church has been
appointed by God to serve the community in the nation for his glory which is one
of the reasons in some of the programs and and and works that that church is
done through pastor Jenkins leadership has made significant impacts in our
community his vision his his commitment his mission has always been developing
dynamic disciples through discipleship discipline and duplication and those of
you who have gone to church know those words pretty good we have unfortunately
pastor Jenkins could not join us but we do have deacon Stanley Featherstone’s
going to accept the board on behalf of the church deacon brothers good evening judge Williams to your
board and to everyone who makes this moment possible and successful as was
said pastor Jenkins is not able to be here but he insisted that someone come
to let you know how grateful he is for your recognition of his efforts to
represent ethical leadership and civic engagement and I think if he were here
he would want to say to you thank you for leveraging who you are your
experience in your exposure to lift up a cause that can help to transform our
nation and like mr. Rey I too am a slightly religious person so I think he
would also want to say to you what scripture says in Galatians 6 and 9 that
I pray that you will not grow weary in well-doing
but remember that in due season you shall reap if you faint not thank you
for what you’re doing sir this next award is very special to me
and you’ll see why in a moment but in in preserving this next award I want to say
something about health equity we hear a lot in our national discourse about
public health and the need for greater health care and dr. King who has been
quoted several times here this evening which is appropriate given the
anniversary of his assassination once said of all the forms of inequality
injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane many of you have
heard some of the statistics about mental health in particular when we
think about public health sometimes we overlook mental health I just want to
share a few brief stats one in five adults experience a mental illness and
nearly 60 percent are not receiving treatment looking at the state of mental
health nationally they’re about ten point two million adults who live with
both mental and substance abuse disorders twenty-six percent of homeless
adults live with serious mental illness and it’s estimated that untreated mental
illness cost the u.s. approximately 193 billion in lost earnings annually mental
health in the context of prisons it’s just alarming 70% of youth in state
and local juvenile justice systems suffer from mental illness today and in
education 80 percent of public school children affected by a mental health
disorder are not receiving the treatment they require 37 percent of students aged
14 and older with the mental health illness drop out of school these are
just some data points that I mentioned just to highlight the importance of
mental health and and explain sort of why we are a particularly focused on
this issue at the center and many of the awardees who you seen tonight are also
working in this area and I’m about to announce the award recipient for the
judge aww centers health equity and awareness Award and you’re going to hear
a little bit about this amazing organization and the work that they’re
doing in this area if you could turn your attention to the screens at this
time hi mr. Roger B Henson so sorry I couldn’t be there in person I’m always
working but certainly not complaining Thank You judge Williams and the whole
team over at the aw jr. Center for Education justice and equity for
honoring me with this award I accept it with a full heart I would also like to
thank you for the work you’ve done to address legal and social inequities in
vulnerable communities in Maryland and across the country I look forward to
building and working with you and the center in the very near future enjoy the
rest of the evening and thank you again ladies and gentlemen if you haven’t
figured it out by now the health equity and awareness award goes to the Boris
Lawrence Hinson Foundation which was founded by actress taraji P Henson and
this evening we’re very fortunate to have with us the executive director of
the Boris Lawrence Hinson foundation miss Tracy J Jenkins while I was sitting
in that seat to make sure that the boots were gonna make it
the women understand what I mean thank you again for this honor we really
appreciate it and we are so grateful taraji obviously couldn’t be here this
evening she’s very busy these days she’s working on Empire the television program
as most of you know there are two films that are coming out next month and then
in January and then of course she started this little organization called
the Boris Lawrence Henson foundation a little under a year ago I am really
excited about the work that’s ahead if you looked at those stats up there I
feel like most of us are either one of them or we know someone who can make up
these numbers I certainly was very alarmed when I learned that one in five
of us are walking with mental health challenges I am one of the five
definitely alarmed to know the 60% of us do not get the support and the help that
we need you know that the african-american community makes up a
high number there so our work is to end the stigma around mental health issues
in our community and we’re also looking to lift this conversation to a national
level and really identify it for the Christ
that it is in our community and get the support that we need to make sure that
this is being addressed from birth through adulthood and we are so excited
for this new partnership with you and as the president mentioned a little earlier
nothing’s free right so Suraj you put this video
together for us in the middle of her crazy life right before Jimmy Kimmel the
other night and that wasn’t free so we are gonna ask of you judge Williams to
please lend us your expertise your wisdom and your guidance as we sort of
push this conversation into the public and we push for legislation that will
make sure that our boys and girls men and women in the african-american
community get the support that they need again thank you so much for this and I
will let Suraj you know that it was a splendid evening and good night and have
a beautiful beautiful journey hopefully we’ll get to see you again soon we’ll be
in Washington DC in May for conference on a state of mental health in the
African American community thank you much and I just want to reiterate how
important it is that we support organizations that are doing this work
and it’s just an honor that I get a chance to support directly the Boris
Lawrence Hinson foundation and I’ll just share by way of context judge and myself
and Karen Miller had a chance to attend the launch of the Boris Lauren sensitive
foundation in California recently and I was so impressed with the work that
they’re doing we’re gonna be working together soon and so we wanted to sow
into that work ourselves and so we have just a modest gift that we’re going to
present to miss Jenkins this evening on behalf of the judge
Alexander Williams Center all right our final award this evening
I’m gonna make ask mr. KJ Sony if he would come forward he’s one of the board
members of the Jay Franklin Jay Franklin I know where my mind is on here that’s
right that’s the I’m a founding member the judge aw student board directors mr.
Soni yes the judge aw sinner service servant leadership award goes to the
center for social change the Center for social change is a nonprofit with
headquarters in Howard County Maryland I visit the center and was given a full
tour of the center and a presentation of its mission and services the center
provides supportive services for those individuals with cognitive and
developmental disabilities and impairments the program and support
services of the center include family support vocational training and
employment support coordination of community training and habitation and
living arrangements the center partners with other community stakeholders in the
community whose mission is similar in terms of enhancing independence
self-determination for a vulnerable community and providing them the
services needed and the opportunity for them to live a healthy safe and valued
living these important services fall to those with disabilities and it clearly
is within the mission of the judge Alexander Williams jr. Center which
focuses on issues and challenges of the disadvantaged and underserved will miss
asahi the Sajid torah executive director and chief executive officer and Jessie
Singh chief operating officers will you come forward to accept the judge ad
Center aw senator servant leadership award let’s give them a hand good evening ladies and gentlemen I am
so honored in awe of such powerful audiences here so such powerful guests
tonight and I’m really humbled to see other awardees what beautiful work
they’re all doing so I would like to give everybody a big round of applause
for this evening there are minorities in every community and then there are
minorities in minorities I call them super minorities super minorities and
not many people reach out to super minorities but Judge William is the
beacon of light for a super minorities for years and years so thank you judge
William for always being there for us and we really appreciate it thank you I just wanted to say a few things for
William thank you so much for being a role model for us for the minority
communities here I wanted to say a little bit about our organization as
well we are dealing we have a couple of I have today this room I have a couple
of common things I’m a University of Baltimore law school graduate myself I’m
a son of a lawyer I’m a brother of a lawyer but I’ve wanted to I wanted to
serve this is a common thinking between judge Williams and myself I want to
serve the community so after 20 years of a very successful profession I made a
u-turn and I came to this side and imagine we are serving more than hundred
this developmentally disabled people and imagine if you have have hundred kids
those cannot express where the pain is in their body and how difficult that job
is just deep in myself or both to consider this is God’s work and they are
God’s children and I were taking care of it but thank you for recognizing us it’s
a wonderful evening and god bless you all
I just want to say a couple of words before I go I know judge Williams since
he was a state attorney in PG County and from there onwards our friendship grew
and then he he was running for the Congress unfortunately we lost but it’s
for the better he was appointed judge by President Clinton and here we are and
this organization since he formed he invited me and I it’s my privilege to be
board member here thank you judge all right we’re at the end and let me
make some closing remarks first of all I want to publicly acknowledge my wife
seer Joyce and Joyce you know it’s hard to do anything
without the support of your better half and when I told her I was leaving a
federal event she said Boyden bumped his head you know but she certainly been in
my corner of there I also see my son Alex here it is my other son he is
Johnny just Johnny there now it’s my third son now is working this evening
but his wonderful lovely wife is nearly ill let me thank all of the board
members of the judge aw send a few here once he’s just staying all of my board
members here Katrina continue standing Katrina let me say
Katrina came all the way from San Francisco she is a local vulnerable a
wonderful lady and she’s been with my Center she was my law clerk a few years
ago and she was supposed to give the award today for the holistic foundation
but she got here late a plane just got here but she’s a faithful a board member
there just a wonderful person so I thank her for that I also want to thank
publicly the staff dr. Cameron Patterson who was a program director for this
Center you’ve seen him I want to thank Aaron Jacobs Aaron stand Aaron is the sentence coordinator Karen
Miller’s our fundraising consultant where’s Karen we have many of student
assistants here we have Kayla Williams I don’t think she’s here today she’s at
University of Baltimore School of Law we have James to go down go and see here at
James here yes Chicago or James is a second-year law student at Howard law
school and we have Lauren of Pitman as Lauren here
yes sir Lauren Lauren is an undergraduate at the University of
Maryland College Park and then finally we have Brianna Welch an undergraduate
student at Bowie State Bowie State University I again thank all
for coming I hope to see you next year at the same time we have captured the
second Thursday each year to be the annual judge
aw lecture now let me say this next year in the years after we have a national
recognized speaker who will address some percolating hot-button issue since this
was my idea to have this lecture I made y’all listen to me as the first speaker
but you won’t have to do that next year we will have a national spokesperson to
address that issue finally before we leave and go back as a food and drink if
I can make a pitch for those who can and may not have taken the opportunity to
contribute to the judge AG of your Center I recently delivered $10,000
towards the establishment of the judge aww seller endowment now $50,000 is
required to establish the endowment and my goal is to raise a minimum of a
hundred thousand by this next year I do recognize that I would
not probably would not live forever but but my hope is to continue the work of
the sinner for years to come and to provide long-term funding and a
financial stability to sustain the longevity of the center in perpetuity
again checks can be made payable this evening if you haven’t already well
there is a sheet with information as to how you may assist with any your
tax-exempt or charitable donations toward the endowment which will ensure
the legacy of our work now and here and after please pick up these forms and
consider making a donation again I wanted to hit you before the holiday
rush comes in when the other priorities take place but this was a wonderful
evening and I’m just so grateful and honored and humbled by your presence
here today I have a passion to make this Center become a national think tank and
we’re going to get there we’re going to be increasing our board and we’re going
to increase the reach I do have plans to move to Baltimore City I extend an
office there because so many critical problems are presented in Baltimore City
and that’s where the action is and that’s where I’m going to be so I
certainly will stay here at the University of Maryland they’ve welcomed
me with open arms but we’re going to be expanding this Center to be town let’s
Billy steel here okay yeah and we’re gonna take advantage of all the support
that we have in the Baltimore City so thank you this evening and have a good
safe trip home those who got Awards can you come up so
I can take pictures with everyone all the groups that they got the awards
thank you so much a good evening you

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