Around 20 members of the local community gathered at City Hall on Monday, Feb. 25, for the meeting of the Chelsea City Council.
On the agenda for Monday night’s meeting was a ceremony to honor individuals in the Chelsea who have made a difference to their community.
The first to be recognized Dr. Alfred Donatelli, the chair of the Chemical Engineering Department at UMass/Lowell. The City Council chose to honor Dr. Donatelli for “his many contributions in the world of Science and Engineering.”
Dr. Donatelli is a proponent of STEM education, which focuses on educating students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. He was featured in the Record earlier in the week for a STEM education demonstration he gave at the Chelsea Public Library.
A group of six individuals were also given the Chelsea Trailblazer 2019 Award: Bruce Mauch, Grace Muwina, Saritin Rizzuto, Lisa Santagate, Record Editor Cary Shuman and Leroy Tyler. In celebration of Black History Month, the annual Chelsea Trailblazer award is bestowed on individuals who have made positive contributions to their local community through demonstrated commitment and service. Shuman was out of town, but the remaining five recipients received awards from City Council and also posed for photos with family and City Council members.
City Council Clerk Paul Casino called award recipients “a beacon of light for all those who want to follow in their footsteps.”
When the floor was opened to members of the public to speak, Joan Cromwell, the President of Chelsea Black Community (CBC), shared her thoughts about Black History Month.
“Black History is not only for Blacks. It’s American history and it’s a part of our history right here in the city,” said Cromwell. “We’re all dealing with the same issues every day, so it’s a shared month that we should all be celebrating together as a community.”
Longtime Chelsea resident Beverly Martin Ross spoke next, adding, “We really appreciate our City Manager as well as our newly appointed [Representative] Ayanna Pressley, who came out to serve the homeless in honor of Black History Month.”
“I just want to give all the praise to the Chelsea Black Community for the work they put in every year creating events all month long,” said City Council President Damali. “There’s a lot of history here in the community that’s rich and I appreciate all the work that goes into keeping the black history alive here in the community. You guys are the real heros.”
A final Black History Month event was hosted on Thursday, February 28, at the Williams Middle School, where keynote speaker Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins honored the Chelsea Trailblazers.
The next City Council meetings will be held at Chelsea City Hall on March 11 and March 25 at 7pm.
The Chelsea Trailblazers were honored on Monday, Feb. 26, at the Chelsea City Council. The Trailblazers award was given as part of the Black History Month celebration, and a celebration for them was given on Wednesday, Feb. 28. Pictured (L-R) Gerry McCue, Daniel Cruz, Joanne Lee Nieves, Councillor Leo Robinson, Shaquor Sandiford, Betty Boyd, Joan Cromwell, Johnnie Lee, Joe McNamee,Shelagh Mahoney, Sharon Caulfield and Dakeya Christmas.
Galen Abdur-Razzaq lit up Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) Chelsea Campus on Monday afternoon with his flute and four piece jazz band, which was spiced up in between with a comprehensive history of jazz and the social history behind the music. The program was part of BHCC’s Black History Month celebration. The program was a hit with everyone who attended.
The Chelsea Black Community (CBC) organization came together last Thursday night to celebrate Black History Month and to also memorialize its first public event.
The celebration took place at the Chelsea Public Library.
“This is the first year that we’ve come out to the community with an event and it’s only our second year in existence,” said CBC President Michael Mason. “We have a lot of energetic and enthusiastic minds who want to do great things for the community.”
Joan Cromwell, the vice president of CBC, said she is a life-long resident of Chelsea and noted that her grandmother would have been proud to see so many people recognizing Black History Month together in Chelsea.
“Chelsea Black Community is kind of the new kid on the block,” she said. “We’re introducing ourselves here as well as celebrating Black History Month…Things are changing and we have so many new faces coming to Chelsea. We have people from Africa and Haiti and from all continents. The world is smaller. We have different ethnicities, but one coming together as a community…We’re about connecting people to resources, networking, socializing and just respecting each other. That’s what we’re all about.”
The motto of the organization is ‘One Strong Voice’ and they will begin meeting the last Thursday of every month.
The organization is open to those 21 and over who live, work or own businesses in Chelsea.
The director of public relations is Deborah Washington.
Chelsea’s Kathryn Woods presented her renowned performance of ‘A Woman, Ain’t I?’ – a tribute to the life of abolitionist Sojourner Truth in her own words – as part of the Black History
Celebration at BHCC Chelsea Campus last Thursday. Woods has performed the 45-minute one-woman show before in Chelsea, and her performance last Thursday brought Truth to life
once again in the City.
Students, staff and community members gathered at the BHCC Chelsea Campus last Thursday afternoon for a celebration of Black History Month. The event featured a presentation about Chelsea inventor Lewis Latimer and the Chelsea-based Latimer Society, as well as a rousing spoken word performance by Chelsea resident Kathryn Woods – who played the role of Sojourner Truth. The afternoon concluded with a luncheon in the campus center.