Monday, July 18, 2011

What is BDPA? Howard James (Philadelphia)

Many people have never heard of BDPA. We have asked BETF-Blog readers and others to answer the query, 'What is BDPA?'. Howard James (owner, Tea Country) shared his thoughts on this question with us recently:

BDPA is an IT legacy builder. I'm a charter member of BDPA (1975) and have been financially current since then (and now a life member). When Earl Pace and David Wimberly first had the audacity to approach a bunch of us in Philly in 1975 about starting an organization for Black IT professionals to help each other and our community, there was no doubt in my mind that they were on to something. We met a number of times to determine what it was we wanted to really be, then we voted on the name BDPA from among three names placed on the table. This, and the rest, is history.

I've served as President of the Philadelphia Chapter in 1990-1991. I received National Member of the Year in 1992.

My active involvement with BDPA has varied from heavy to light depending on my availability. What makes me want to contribute, at least to some extent each year, is knowing that BDPA has built and continues to strengthen a legacy. Even the significant numbers who are no longer members, take what they have gleened from BDPA and use it to contribute to the IT industry in many ways that we often don't even hear about. BDPA's positive impact on African-Americans in the IT field, as well as its impact on global IT in general, is much more far reaching than any statistics that we may gather will reveal.

We should all make a commitment each year, no matter how small, to assure that BDPA's stamp of excellence is perpetuated. Let's sing it together; you know the tune: "I'll be there, I'll be there, just call my name, and I'll be there". And let's sing it every year.

Howard has a strong legacy within BDPA. I hope that others will follow his lead by sharing their thoughts on this query, 'What is BDPA?'

No comments: