Thursday, April 30, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: Project Management in the Workplace (Video)

Chandy Littlejohn, VP of Education for the Memphis Chapter of Project Management Institute, is interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in April 2008.

What are your thoughts on the PMP certification? Is it still worth the time and effort to get it?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Message from Triangle Chapter President

BDPA Triangle is the 14th largest chapter in the nation. However, their place in BDPA history is strengthened by the fact our annual conference is coming to North Carolina for the first time in over 30 years! I just came across the message that BDPA Triangle chapter president Rick Leggett shared in recent chapter newsletter. I thought you would be interested in his thoughts.

The new year has already brought us many new historic changes. Our Chapter is preparing to host the National BDPA Technology Conference in Raleigh; launched our new BDPA Today Online monthly publication; and SITES/HSCC program at NCCU that was also featured in the Triangle Tribune. Our Chapter has over twenty volunteers working with the 29 students enrolled representing 16 high schools area high schools. Now that’s impressive in itself.

SITES/HSCC is a nationally recognized program aimed at increasing the success of students who enter collegiate environments and technology-laden workplace by exposing them to the rigors of work life through development of their Computer, Information and Internet Technology skills to solve business problems. The SITES/HSCC (Saturday Academy) course is a comprehensive program lead by IT professionals, which provide students with the Internet technology skills essential in a global economy. We want to especially thank our wonderful supporters...NCCU, NC-SIM, the Parents, and encourage area corporations to support the program.

BDPA Triangle Chapter has much more in store for 2009, as we continue to build our brand, sponsorship base & partnerships, along with membership, program offerings and impact on the community at-large!!

Rick Leggett, President
BDPA Triangle Chapter

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

New Survey is First to Examine Nonprofit Industry’s Use of Social Networking

Co-sponsors ThePort Network, Inc., NTEN, and Common Knowledge released results of the nonprofit industry’s first-ever survey examining the use of social networking as a marketing and fundraising channel. Conducted earlier this year, the survey polled 978 nonprofit professionals about their organizations’ use of commercial social networking sites, as well as their own hosted social networking communities.

Included in the survey highlights:

  • Among commercial social networking sites, Facebook is the most popular, with 74 percent of nonprofits maintaining a presence. Nonprofit communities on Facebook (including BETF) are still relatively small, with an average size of 5,454 members.
  • Four-fifths of nonprofits are committing at least one-quarter of a full-time staff person to their social networking efforts.
  • More than half of nonprofits intend to increase social networking project staffing over the next 12 months.


BDPA Twin Cities HSCC Coordinator Michael Wulf Shares His Testimonial

Michael Wulf is a man with a tremendous BDPA legacy. He is the HSCC coordinator for BDPA Twin Cities chapter. He has trained upwards of 100 young people as part of the chapter's SITES program. The photo shows some of the BDPA Twin Cities students and instructors from this year's high school training program.

Bro. Wulf shared the following testimonial:

"Wayne, I am extremely proud of BDPA organzation, the 50+ chapters, the 25+ competition teams preparing themselves for the national competition August 2009. It's pictures like this that make me even more proud. This is one class from the Twin Cities chapter. Our previous year HSCC students are 'junior instructors' responsible for preparing and delivering curriculum as instructors to new/less experienced students. This itself is a self fulfilling prophecy and dream to elevate our community! This single shift in delivery of our training has increased the morale and energy in every class 10 fold! BDPA kids are 'the' very best kids there are and am proud to be a part of this fine organization."

Do you have this type of enthusiasm for BDPA in your chapter as well?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Letter of Inquiry: Wal-Mart Community Grant (Triangle)

BDPA Triangle talked with Wal-Mart store managers in Sanford NC and Durham NC about their SITES program. BETF agreed to partner with the chapter to submit $2,500 community grant request to each store. The cover letter and community grant application is being hand-delivered by the chapter leadership this week.

We obtained a $1,000 grant in support of BDPA New York chapter SITES program earlier this year. The funding was result of application submitted to the Wal-Mart Store in Long Island, NY.

Has your chapter approached the local store manager in your area about funding? Let us know if you want BETF support in your efforts to obtain a community grant from your local Wal-Mart store manager.

Personally, I think that all 51 chapters should be going after this one!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Grant Proposal: W.K. Kellogg Foundation

W.K. Kellogg Foundation seeks to fund promising ventures across the United States. BETF agreed to partner with BDPA Middle Tennessee on joint proposal to this funding source. We submitted an online grant application asking the the Kellogg Foundation to support our Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in the greater Nashville area. We anticipate a response within 45 days.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation sees tremendous opportunity and innovation happening, and they will consider opportunities to learn from innovation, to help catalyze work in other places in the US, and to also bring that learning back to the places where they are geographically-focused on moving that indicator needle on behalf of children. Ultimately, they will invest throughout the country, but with the priority on Michigan, Mississippi and New Mexico.

Race and Place as Critical Factors in Children’s Success - Kellogg Foundation efforts to achieving racial equity will include removing present day barriers to equal opportunities. This may be accomplished through different strategies including – but not limited to – eliminating institutionalized discriminatory policies and practices, and working in neighborhoods of concentrated poverty to improve opportunities for quality education, health, safety, and economic security.

As they look for ways to keep our country prosperous, they seek to make the next generation a significant priority. Even economic experts agree that child development is the foundation for community development – which, in turn, is the foundation for economic development. Capable children become the foundation for a prosperous and sustainable society. Check out the Foundation video to see how they focus on 'children and learning'

W.K. Kellogg Foundation
One Michigan Avenue East
Battle Creek, Michigan 49017-4012
Tel: 269-968-1611
Fax: 269-968-0413

Selection Criteria - The Kellogg Foundation staff conducts a disciplined review of each grant application received to determine whether the proposal fits within their funding priorities and scope. Criteria may vary slightly, but generally, they are looking for proposals that have the potential to:
  • Have a measurable impact on children and families who face significant barriers to opportunity for success
  • Strengthen the “opportunity grid” (the systems and services) within communities that create opportunities for children
  • Make significant and sustainable change
  • Engage promising innovative solutions and technologies
  • Work in partnership with communities, governments, businesses, and experts
  • Leverage support from other sources
  • Build on existing Kellogg Foundation work

Wish us luck! And if you don't believe in luck ... then make an online donation to support us!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Happy Global Youth Service Day

Global Youth Service Day (GYSD) is the largest annual service event in the world. GYSD highlights and celebrates the difference youth make in their communities year-round through community service and service-learning. This weekend, millions of young will participate in and lead service projects in all 50 states and in more than 100 countries around the world. Young people, working with their families, schools, community organizations, faith-based communities, and businesses, will improve their communities and change the world by addressing critical issues such as global climate change, education & illiteracy, poverty, health, hunger, and homelessness.

Friday, April 24, 2009

White House Appoints Head of Social Innovation Office

It’s now official: Sonal Shah, former head of global development at, the search-engine company’s philanthropic arm, is head of the new White House Office of Social Innovation.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

PMP Exam Prep Course Awards 35 PDUs

It is crucial that all Information Technology (IT) professionals stay on top of their game. One important skill-set that many of us need to enhance in today's challenging market is project management.

As such, methinks that you need to know that the Spring 2009 enrollment period is still open for the BDPA IT Institute. The Project Management Professional (PMP) Exam Prep course is scheduled for May 11th through August 14th and will be taught by Gregory Brown, PMP. The course has been updated to align with the 4th edition of the PMBOK Guide and now awards all 35 PDUs required to sit for the PMP Certification Exam.

The PMP Exam Prep course is a cost-effective and convenient option for busy professionals. Enrollment in the course includes access to our online course environment administered through Auburn University’s Blackboard system, weekly conference calls with the instructor and fellow students, and inclusion in the BDPA IT Institute’s PMP Exam Prep Alumni group on CollectiveX for continued support after you complete the course.

Taking control of your destiny is just a step away! Apply Now at

For more information, please contact us at

Grant Award: Wal-Mart Foundation

We are pleased to announce that the Wal-Mart Foundation provided us with a $1,000 grant in support of BDPA New York chapter SITES program. The funding was result of application submitted to the Wal-Mart Store in Long Island, NY. Our points of contact at the Wal-mart store in Westbury were Maria Carbello and her supervisor Edwina Hedley.

Wal-Mart Store #3420
1220 Old Country Road
Westbury, NY 11590
(516) 794-7280

Judaea Lane and Renetta English are the two BDPA New York chapter leaders that worked with BETF to 'make it so'. There are Wal-Mart stores in all 51 chapter cities. Has your chapter approached the local store manager in your area about funding?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Summer Programs will be Expiring

copyright by R2C2H2
Many Summer programs will be expiring between May 1, 2009 through May 15, 2009.

You might ask, why summer programs? The reason is that it helps to build a foundation for your child and helps them to prepare for college or life.

Regardless, if you are going to college or not, your child still needs to know how to work with others and know the value of life.

Even if the program states Engineer or some major your child doesn't want, the key is that many of the programs teach Math and Science and these courses will be instrumental in preparing your child for college preparation exams such as the ACT, SAT, etc.

The goal is to prepare the legacies for the future and it starts with what type of knowledge you are willing to give him or her. Remember, knowledge is powerful, if used properly.

I am reminded by Harriett Tubman when she stated:

"Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world."

"If I could have convinced more slaves that they were slaves, I could have freed thousands more."

-Harriet Tubman

Let us be on the side of sharing knowledge, because it does make a differences.

In the end, "we grow as the children grow". What we put in them will determine what they will be. Everyone has a gift and talent and we must come together to bring them out for every child, because in the end "no child should be left behind".

Please share the blog, Planning and Preparing for College, with as many people as you can. The more you share the more that will benefit.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Message from Bay Area Chapter President

I have been a BDPA member for over 20 years. Back in the day I was a keynote speaker for our BDPA chapter in northern California. The late James Banks was chapter president at the time. The chapter had a wonderful high school computer competition team (Edward Dorsey, Terralyn Renfo, Lameana Sumpter, Lena Thomas and Aisha Wright) back then. BDPA Bay Area chapter has a powerful legacy ... however, the lights have been out over the past few years.

As such, it is with great pleasure that I introduce BETF-Blog readers to the new president of the rejuvenating BDPA Bay Area chapter. Her name is Patricia Glover. Patricia is a partner at Pacific Mesa. More importantly, she is a sister with vision for advancing he careers of African Americans in the Bay Area's IT industry from the classroom to the boardroom.

Here is the message she sent to her chapter stakeholders:

Martin Luther King was a great orator, but I read that he spent a lot of time developing this skill. He wasn’t a natural in the beginning, but he worked at it until he mastered it. He became a powerful and mesmerizing speaker. Many of his most famous speeches dared a generation to dream of a life full of possibilities, courage and shared potential.

An important thing about courage is that it will help you think and act in the right way. It will help you focus on the opportunities in front of you instead of fixating on the problems. Problems are often opportunities coming at us in packaging that isn't what we expect or want.

So when you say I welcome problems, there's a reason for it. They keep your mind flexible and open to creative solutions. As you know, technology is built on finding creative solutions to widespread problems.

Whenever there is science, technology follows. While science is academic and benign, technolgoy unleashes the potential for discovery. This is the underlying princlple that makes membership in BDPA so atractive -- everyone's participation is needed and valuable. BDPA Bay Area is looking to become a catalyst for change. We need creative thinkers and doers to lead the organization to the next level.

Rebuilding the Bay Area Chapter solves a problem by allowing under-represented groups in technology to re-focus on education and finding opportunites through networking, forecasting, and planniing. Einstein said, "You can't solve a problem with the same thinking that created the problem" so we are looking for new ideas:

  • Senior executives in business and technology who share their perspectives with professionals at BDPA mixers and mini-tech events.
  • Membership Benefit Package offering a 10% to 15% finders fee to both members and non-members who bring in corporate sponsorships.
  • Discounted fees to service providers who partner with us and generous gifts-in-kind to create exciting venues.
  • The Bay Area Chapter’s High School Competition with a focus on business and web development skills for teens through alliances with entrepreneurial and financial education programs introducing future technologists to science, technical training, negotiation, pricing, forecasting, and marketing.
Our organization aspires to provide business and technology training coupled with mentorship from the classroom to the boardroom. BDPA is a national organization consisting of 51 chapters committed to improving the Information Technology literacy and advancement of its members.

If you are interested in a leadership position, please send your inquiry to or call (510) 894-2058.

Please use the COMMENTS option below to share some BDPA-Love with Patricia!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: Technology in Publishing (Video)

Dwight Fryer, author, is interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in March 2008.

It is exciting to find BDPA members that are published authors.

What Impact has the First 100 Days had on BDPA?

April 30th will mark the 100th day of the Obama Administration.

The BDPA Education & Technology Foundation is inviting all BDPA members and supporters to speak up and tell us – in 100 words or less, or with a video clip lasting no more than two minutes – what has been accomplished for BDPA members and youth in our country over this first 100 days. We'll post responses on our website, Facebook and YouTube page beginning on April 30th.

Don't be shy. Share your thoughts on this historical occassion in our nation's history. What say u?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

This Week in BDPA (Apr 19-25)

BDPA has 51 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA CollectiveX Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Finally, I hope you will consider making a tax-deductible online donation to the BDPA Foundation in honor of Lauren Pemberton (HSCC Alumni 2005-2007). Do it now!

Grant Recipient: BDPA Triangle ($384)

The BDPA Education & Technology Foundation (BETF) approved a small grant for the youth education program in Raleigh/Durham area. BDPA Triangle chapter president Rick Leggett wrote us back with the following message:

On behalf of BDPA Triangle Chapter - Executive Committee, thanks for the grant award notification. We will fax you the completed IRS Tax Receipt form this week, as well as subsequently submit the Project Completion Report.

BETF funding support will assist our HSCC Team efforts to attend the 2009 National High School Computer Competition representing the Triangle (NC) region.

Rick Leggett, President
BDPA Triangle Chapter
Phone: (919) 688-5982
We want to give out larger grants in the future ... but, we are dependent on support from folks like you. Won't you consider making a secure online donation to BETF today?!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hurston/Wright 3-Day Writers’ Workshop - Deadline: May 11, 2009

Friday, July 24 – Sunday, July 26, 2009 * Howard University, Washington, DC.

If you want to work with a master teacher who has been where you are and knows first hand the challenges you face, this workshop is for you! Each class is instructed by a professional who not only knows about writing, but how to teach writing. Whether published or unpublished you will be provided with peer review, instructor (Excellent opportunity to built up your writing skills -- Tuition is only $385. [Read More]

Help Bridge the Achievement Gap: Join Us for Our Historic March to the White House -May 16, 2009


If you would like to organize a Bus from your city to join this Event, please give all of your contact information, the City you wish to organize including how many people you can guarantee to accommodate. The Buses will be free of charge if you can gather enough people from your city.

[Read More]

Friday, April 17, 2009

Luis Ubiñas Charts a New Direction for Ford Foundation

We have not been successful in our efforts to partner with the Ford Foundation, the nation’s second-largest philanthropic institution. Perhaps our chances will improve now that the results of a two-year overhaul undertaken by its new leader, Luis A. Ubiñas have been unveiled.

The foundation settled on eight issues, including access to education, natural resources and sustainable development, that will be its focus. It has worked in all of those areas in the past, but they were less clearly delineated.


2009 BDPA Conference: Early Bird Registration Extended to 4/30/2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

National Day of Silence

The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network will sponsor the 13th annual National Day of Silence tomorrow, April 17. Students from more than 8,000 middle schools, high school and colleges have registered as participants. Students will take some form of a vow of silence to protest and bring attention to anti-LGBT bullying and harassment in schools.

Some students are staying silent tomorrow in honor of Carl Walker-Hoover, who committed suicide earlier this month after enduring months of anti-gay bullying and name-calling.

To learn more about the Day of Silence, visit the official website.

Philanthropy Caucus in Congress Adds a New Member

Idaho Senator Mike Crapo is now one of seven Senators to serve on the Senate Philanthropy Caucus. [SOURCE]

The Caucus, with a partner effort in the U.S. House of Representatives, was formed to inform fellow Senators and Representatives about the important role that foundations play across the country. The Caucus also serves to identify issues of mutual interest to the philanthropic sector and lawmakers. The group is also charged with raising awareness about legislation and issue facing foundations.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Zack Lemelle Shares Overview of ITSMF (Video)

Information Technology Senior Management Forum (ITSMF) is a national organization dedicated exclusively to fostering upper-level executive talent among African American IT professionals. Their goal is to prepare African American IT professionals for senior-level responsibility by offering executive career development, mentoring, and networking opportunities for advancing your career.

Zack Lemelle is the ITSMF chair. He takes some time in the following video to share insights about the relationship between BDPA and ITSMF. He also provides some great advice for young people considering a career in the IT industry. Enjoy the video:

BETF hopes to announce a joint fundraiser with ITSMF in the near-term. For now, we would be interested in your thoughts, comments or questions about ITSMF. What say u?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Why is BDPA Important?

What was the more remarkable thing you learned from this video? Now that you know ... what are you going to do about it?

Tea Country Offers Fundraiser to Support BDPA Philadelphia Chapter

Tea Country is a provider of Gourmet Loose-Leaf Tea. The company, owned by BDPA member Howard James, will direct 20% of your purchase to support BDPA Philadelphia chapter.

All you need to do is use 'BDPA' in the 'company field' where you enter your credit card information for online purchases.

Those of you in the greater Philadelphia area can give the 'BDPA' code when you visit the store in person:

6722 Old York Road
Philadelphia, PA 19126

I encourage all BETF-Blog readers to support this fundraiser. In fact, it would be great if we could identify other fundraising opportunities like this one. Any ideas?

Monday, April 13, 2009

This Week in BDPA (Apr 12-18)

BDPA has 51 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA CollectiveX Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Finally, I hope you will consider making a tax-deductible online donation to the BDPA Foundation in honor of Brandon Berry (HSCC Alumni 1999-2000). Do it now!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: Cultural Diversity and Technology (Video)

Callie Herd and Ron Herd are interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in February 2008.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Milestone: 600 People in BDPA Facebook Group

Raymond Person (Cincinnati) became the 600th person to join the BDPA group on Facebook.

BETF and 16 BDPA chapters (Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Hartford, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Richmond, Southern Minnesota and Twin Cities) have a presence on Facebook.

Are you on Facebook? Do you see upside for BDPA to market to past, current and future members via social networks like Facebook?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Diplomatic Efforts Get Tech Support

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is arming her diplomatic efforts with a new set of tools including Facebook, text messaging, and YouTube. The State Department has hired Eric Ross, whose job will be to "blend technology with diplomacy in an attempt to help solve some of the globe’s most vexing problems on health care, poverty, human rights and ethnic conflicts."

Ross is an unlikely Washington operator. He commutes to the District from Baltimore, where he settled more than 10 years ago as a Teach for America volunteer working at a middle school on the city's economically troubled west side. He grew up near Charleston, W.Va., where unemployment was ever rising. He named the first of his three children Colton, a play on "coal town," as a "shout-out" to his roots, he said.

Message from Orlando Chapter President

BDPA Orlando chapter reached an all-time high in membership this month. BDPA Orlando is now the 18th largest chapter in nation. The main reason for this growth is the new chapter president, Pablo More. Here is the message that he shared with his chapter stakeholders this month:

Greetings, we have a great program next week that will also be accessible via Live Meeting (Webinar). Also we are going to be inviting recruiters and hiring managers with job openings to the meeting so that our members can interview for a job after the meeting. We have a number of initiatives underway which require your active involvement. Please take a moment to review the various volunteer opportunities and let us know what interests you. We can use you even if you have an hour to spare.

This is also
your newsletter so if there is something that you would like to share and have included on this newsletter that would be of interest to BDPA members please forward it to:

Thank you,
Pablo More, President
BDPA Orlando Chapter

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Report Predicts Widespread Teacher Shortages

BDPA and BETF work closely with teachers all around the country as we implement the annual Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. On a personal level, my mom (past president of BDPA Los Angeles chapter) was also a public school teacher for over 30 years. As such it was distressing to see the information shared earlier this week by the New York Times:

"The traditional teaching career is collapsing at both ends," a National Commission on Teaching and America's Future report says. One in three new teachers is leaving the profession within five years and "over the next four years, more than a third of the nation's 3.2 million teachers could retire."
Are you observing the impact of shrinking teacher workforce in your community?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Brian Smith, National BDPA Chief Information Officer (Video)

Brian Smith served as National BDPA CIO in 2008. In this video he gives an overview of the responsibilities of his office.

The interview is conducted by Mario Armstrong.
The video is produced by Kevin Jones (Visual Propaganda)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Grant Recipient: BDPA Dayton ($2,550)

The BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is pleased to announce a $2,550 donation to BDPA Dayton. The chapter leadership followed the 7-step funding process laid out on BETF website. BETF recognizes that to close the gap of computer and technology literacy, minority youth must participate and compete in today’s digital economy.

The $2,550 grant will be used by BDPA Dayton chapter to support their Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. This chapter has been a strong participant in the national high school computer competition for many years. Here are photos from the 2006 and 2008 education banquets.

BETF directors expressed interest in working with Dayton chapter on funding for their 2010 SITES program. We look for them to explore increased funding opportunities through United Way, Combined Federal Campaign or joint grant proposals.

Join us in congratulating BDPA Dayton chapter leadership on their success in this funding effort!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: Managing Malicious Software (Video)

Anthony Amos, Amos Education & Consulting Service, is interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in January 2008.

Have you had issues with malicious software in the past?

This Week in BDPA (Apr 5-11)

BDPA has 51 chapters around the nation. You can find programs, services or networking activity within BDPA and the BDPA Foundation on any day of the week. We strive to advance the careers of African Americans in the IT industry. Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the BDPA CollectiveX Calendar and :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA CollectiveX Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Please make tax-deductible online donation to the BDPA Foundation in honor of Brandon Berry (HSCC Alumni 1999-2000). Do it now!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Grant Award: Philips Healthcare

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) and BDPA Boston Metrowest chapter submitted a joint grant proposal to Philips Healthcare in December 2008. We are pleased to announce that Philips Healthcare awarded us $2,500 to support the SITES program in Boston.

The cover letter that came with the check read in part:

Dear Mr. Hicks:

Philips Healthcare in Andover has had an opportunity to review your request for funding to support the SITES program in the Boston area. I am pleased to announce a $2,500 donation (check enclosed) to support this effort.

Philips is pleased to support BDPA Education & Technology Foundation in this manner.

Kathy Rogers, Manager
Community Relations

Congratulations to Rod Flakes, Danna Sturdivant and the other members of the BDPA Boston Metrowest team for delivering a youth education program worthy of funding!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Dr. Jesse Bemley, Founder of BDPA's High School Computer Competition (Video)

Mario Armstrong interviews national HSCC founder Dr. Jesse Bemley. Dr. Bemley is in the BDPA Hall of Fame. He founded both the national high school computer competition and the IT Showcase. He is an inspiration to African American IT professionals from the 'classroom to the boardroom'.

Do you have any thoughts or memories from either the HSCC or IT Showcase that you care to share with us?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Grant Declination: Computers for Learning

BDPA Richmond chapter and BETF submitted an in-kind donation request to Computers for Learning (CFL). The chapter sought to have eight personal computers donated to them for use in the Student IT Education & Scholarship (SITES) program.

CFL exists to promote the reuse of computers. Federal agencies transfer computers and related peripheral equipment excess to their needs directly to schools and some educational nonprofit organizations. The CFL program specifically matches the computer needs of schools and educational nonprofit organization with excess equipment in Federal agencies.

CFL informed us that the request from BDPA Richmond chapter was denied. They wrote,

"This denial notice has no bearing on your eligibility and does not mean that you are not eligible for other equipment in CFL. The most common reason for an equipment denial is competing requests for the equipment from other organizations. A competing organization may have been allocated the equipment because they:

a. Could have been from an empowerment zone or enterprise community or
b. May have applied for the equipment before you did.

In the event there is no response from the activity or activities receiving the allocation, your request will be reconsidered."
The CFL program's ambitious goal is to make modern computer technology an integral part of every classroom so that every child has the opportunity to be educated to his or her full potential. I anticipate that BETF will partner with BDPA Richmond and any of the other 50 chapters on future requests!

Michelle Obama: Role Model for Our Daughters and Granddaughters

First Lady Michelle Obama is a powerful inspiration for young girls. Here she is talking with students in a London school.

How cool would it be to have her as a speaker at one of the National BDPA Conferences over the next 4-8 years?!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Top 10 BDPA Chapters (Apr 2009, Membership)

There are 51 BDPA chapters in the nation. BDPA added a new chapter in Hampton Roads VA in February. Each chapter averages 54 members. The top ten chapters in terms of membership as of 4/1/2009 are:
  1. Chicago - (all-time national record high, 565 members)
  2. Philadelphia - (all-time chapter record high, 193 members)
  3. Richmond
  4. Atlanta
  5. Washington DC
  6. New York - (jumped up 1 place this month)
  7. Cincinnati - (dropped 1 place this month)
  8. Detroit - (jumped up 1 place this month)
  9. New Jersey - (dropped 1 place this month)
  10. Cleveland -

Seven of these chapters are in the BDPA Century Club with at least 100 members. BDPA Education & Technology Foundation provides funding to support these programs and services at local level. Our hope is that you will consider making a donation to BETF this year. You can securely donate online or you can give BETF a call on (513) 284-4968 to discuss your pledge offline. What say u?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Top 10 Black Blogs (April 2009)

I trust that all villagers are having a joyous Easter. I apologize for my late presentation of the Villager's Black Blog Rankings (BBR) for this month. My hope is to get back on schedule for posting this list on the 1st day of each month.

We now have 1,629 blogs ranked in April 2009 BBR. Hello Beautiful (created by Tracey Cooper) and Living Life Abundantly (created by Marenda Taylor) both powered their way into the Top 10 this month. I hope that Tracey and Marenda drop by to share some tips in the comments section with the rest us!

The number of blogs tracked by our monthly rankings have increased significantly since we shared those first 75 Black blogs in Sep 2007. It has been a remarkable journey. It is likely we are missing some Black-owned & operated blogs our current list! If you see any that are missing ... please let me know in the COMMENTS section.

Here are some of the blog lists from the past four quarters:
Anyhow, with no further ado, here are the Top Ten Black Blogs for April 2009:

  1. Pam Spaulding: Pam's House Blend (Authority: 1,090 / Rank: 1,426) - [Politics] Pam's blog continues in the BBR #1 for the 10th month in a row. The Washington Post shared some reasons that Pam has been so influential in the blogosphere. You can meet Sis. Spaulding in person at the 2009 Blogging While Brown Conference. Tags for this blog are race, politics, feminism, gay and lesbian. This blog was BBR #2 in April 2008.
  2. The Bossip: (Authority: 740 / Rank: 2,724) - [Entertainment] remains the top-ranked gossip or entertainment blog on our list. This blog has spheres of influence in Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York City allowing it to be the first to break stories about celebrities such as Chris Brown, Rudy (from 'The Cosby Show') and Tyson Beckford This blog was BBR #1 in April 2008.
  3. Ahsmi Rawlins: Nah Right (Authority: 738 / Rank: 3,042) - [Entertainment] Ashmi (a.k.a., ESKAY) has been blogging since May 2005. Folks continue to marvel at the ability of Eskay to stay ahead of the blogging game. Personally, I'm curious to learn the backstory of his logo ... the St. Andrews Place street sign. I was born and raised on St. Andrews Place in Los Angeles! Anyhow, the tags for this blog are news and music. This blog was BBR #4 in April 2008.
  4. Felicia Palmer and Steven Samuel: This is (Authority: 592 / Rank: 3,806) - [Entertainment] SOHH stands for Support Online Hip Hop and is a blog based in Jersey City, NJ. is a destination site for fans of hip hop music. The site was created in 1997 as a more cost-effective information alternative to a monthly print publication called 4Control Media, which launched two years earlier. Tags for this blog are HIP HOP, Rap, Magazine and Newspapers. This blog was not ranked a year ago.
  5. Angel Laws: Concrete Loop (Authority: 572 / Rank: 3,979) - [Entertainment] Angel Laws is the young sister who who owns and operates this dynamic entertainment blog. I am very pleased to report that we can learn how Angel, who blogged herself into a successful career, will be a presenter at the 2009 Blogging While Brown Conference. Angel has other interests in life as demonstrated by her photo blog. Tags for this blog are Music, Pictures, gossip, R&B, Hollywood, Celebs, Exclusive, loop, concrete, gossip blog, concreteloop, black celebs, black gossip, celeb interviews and black hollywood. This blog was BBR #3 in April 2008.
  6. Tracey Cooper: Hello Beautiful (Authority: 544 / Rank: 4,519) - [Entertainment] This blog is a fun mix of fashion, beauty, entertainment and relationship talk carefully curated for Black women. From politics to celebrity gossip and love to style advice, Hello Beautiful helps keep Black women connected to information they love and the people they want to share it with. Tags for this blog are relationships, sex, Michelle Obama, fashion, Rihanna and 'naked with socks on'. I must admit that I learned about a woman who uses her boobs to pay for her rent from this blog! This blog was not ranked a year ago.
  7. Oliver Willis: Oliver Willis (Authority: 508 / Rank: 4,764) - [Politics] Oliver has been blogging since April 2005. He is expanding his cyber-empire to YouTube as well. Lately, Oliver has been tangled in blogging warfare with some conservative pundits. Tags for this blog are politics, media, news, comedy, humor, progressive, journalism, democrats and movies. This blog was BBR #6 in April 2008.
  8. Natasha Eubanks: Young, Black & Fabulous (Authority: 500 / Rank: 4,865) - [Entertainment] Natasha Eubanks started her blog to give the paparazzi treatment to celebrities who don't make the pages of US Weekly or the posts of She started the blog after evacuating New Orleans ahead of Hurricane Katrina. You can learn more about Sis. Eubanks from this blogger interview. This blog was BBR #7 a year ago.
  9. Baratunde Thurston and Cheryl Contee: Jack and Jill Politics (Authority: 442 / Rank: 5,821) - [Politics] Baratunde and Cheryl make up the dynamic online team of Jack and Jill. Their blog provides a Black bourgeoisie perspective on U.S. politics. I recommend that villagers subscribe to Baratunde/Jack on YouTube or Facebook to get a different perspective on his style and content. This blog was BBR #8 in April 2008.
  10. Marenda Taylor: Living Life Abundantly (Authority: 362 / Rank: 7,692) - [Social Commentary] Marenda wrote, "I started this blog with the intentions of expressing my thoughts, provoking thought, bridging gaps, and sparking conversation. The agenda is to entertain, educate, and empower. The goal is to inspire, encourage, and uplift. The mission is to Live Life Abundantly and to share the lifestyle with as many people as possible." This blog was BBR #135 in April 2008.

HONORABLE MENTION (11-25): The Field Negro, La Shawn Barber's Corner, Womanist Musings, Ill Doctrine, The Smoking Section, Necole Bitchie, AfroBella, Raw Dawg Buffalo, Sandra Rose, The Black Snob, Rod 2.0:Beta, The Angry Black Woman, Angry Black Bitch, and Crunk & Disorderly.

This ranking is open to any blogger of African descent. We invite all progressive Black bloggers to consider applying for membership into The AfroSpear.

Black Blog Rankings lean heavily on the Technorati Authority and Rank score for each blog. The Technorati authority and rank numbers are shown in parenthesis. The authority figure includes a number of factors including the number of blogs that are linked to this blogger over the past six months. The rank number indicates how many blogs are between the one listed and The Huffington Post, which is the #1 overall blog in the universe.

We are adding links to the Word version of the Villager's Black Blog Rankings. Let me know if you want a copy of the Word version. In the meantime, I encourage you to share some link-love with this post so that your blog readers know about us!

Message from Philadelphia Chapter President

BDPA Philadelphia is the back-to-back defending 'Chapter of the Year'. I remain convinced that one reason for their success is the open communication style of BDPA Philadelpha chapter president Monique Berry.

Here is this month's message from Monique to her chapter members, sponsors, entrepreneurs, educational institutions and communty:

It's Spring!!!!!

Well, we have made it through another winter in the great city of Philadelphia. March 20th marked the start of spring and so we will all be busy getting the yards in shape, the boats in the water, and preparing to enjoy the summer.

Our March program meeting was a good time for all and I would like to thank Professor Leann Erickson, for an enjoyable and informative presentation. BDPA member Patricia Debnam remarked "I really learned a lot at the meeting Wednesday night. LeAnn Erickson was a very interesting guest. 'Top Secret Rosies' is something I never knew about". We could not have had this event without the hard work of Byron Mayes, VP of Professional Services and our co-sponsor CIGNA.

Please mark your calendars for April 15. Guest speaker Tyrone Harrison will discuss the 'Multigenerational Workplace' Be sure to register so that we can order food and seating for this event.

This month the BDPA Philadelphia Executive Board will meet for our quarterly retreat. During this time we will review our 'Balanced Score Card' to ensure we are on track to achieve our goals for the 2009 calendar year. We will look back at the first quarter and make changes to ensure our members of the continued commitment of the Executive Committee.

To all members, I encourage each of you to supplement your education, knowledge, and skills. With the rapid pace of change in our industry, a successful IT career requires not only deep and constantly updated technology expertise but also an equally rich background in business. You must be knowledgeable enough to help your organization around any unique problems it may have.

Your continued support and dedication to BDPA has been a mainstay these past few months. Please know how grateful I am to all members of the BDPA family. As we carry on this essential work to make the Philadelphia Chapter stronger, I hope you will take time to share your thoughts with me.

Have a Great Month.
Monique F. Berry, President
BDPA Philadelphia Chapter

Our BDPA stakeholders in Philadelphia are blessed to have such a warm and eloquent leader. We have BDPA leaders like Monique all over the nation. My hope is that they are as committed to open communication as Monique.

What are your thoughts about Monique's April 2009 message?