The Cordish Companies, MWMCA hold 4th Annual Black History Heroes Awards


In celebration of Black History Month, The Cordish Companies’ Live! Casino & Hotel and the Md. Washington Minority Companies Association (MWMCA), honored Baltimore Times Publisher Joy Bramble and other leaders throughout Maryland and DC who have made significant contributions to their respective communities.

Bramble and the other leaders were honored during the 4th Annual Black History Heroes Awards. The event took place on Thursday, February 23, 2017 at Live! Casino & Hotel located at 7002 Arundel Mills Circle in Hanover, MD.

The program was held at Live! Center Stage and included networking, and an awards program and presentation. Antonio Freeman, NFL Super Bowl champion and Baltimore native was also among the honorees, and served as the event’s Keynote Speaker. The evening also included food and entertainment, which featured a tribute to the Jackson 5.

“I am very honored, and feel very privileged to receive the Black History Heroes Award,” said Bramble. “This is a very distinguished award among a group of very deserving people. The name of the award makes it extremely special to me. There are so many Black heroes who are never recognized. I feel very privileged to receive this award, and happy to be honored among such an outstanding group of people.”

Bramble also praised the philanthropic efforts of The Cordish Companies, which includes helping to fund a new Judy Center at Arlington Elementary School in Baltimore City to help pre-school children and their parents in that community.

“I am really proud of The Cornish Companies,” said Bramble. “They are really investing in the community. As a former teacher, I applaud what they are doing at Arlington.”

In addition to Bramble and Freeman, honorees of the 2017 Black History Heroes Awards were: Millie Brown, founder, A Mother’s Cry; Helen Dale, Strategic Staffing Coordinator, Maryland Transportation Authority; Lisa Ennis, president, Eccentric’s The SPA Sanctuary; Dr. C. Vernon Gray, president, C. Vernon Gray & Associates; Isiah “Ike” Leggett, County Executive, Montgomery County, MD; Saundra (Midge) Matlock-Williams, manager, Maryland Centers/ Center Supervisor, USO of Metropolitan Washington- Baltimore; Ricky D. Smith, Sr., Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer, Maryland Aviation Administration/BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport; and Rev. Dr. Willie F. Wilson, Pastor, Union Temple Baptist Church.

“This event was a Black Heroes Award program, and one of the things I have done over last 30 or 40 years was to work on behalf of minority businesses,” said Dr. Gray who was the first African-American elected to the Howard County Council and the former Administrator of the Howard County Office of Human Rights. “I am honored to receive this award. It’s good to be honored among people who do things because they have a passion for them and want to give back to the community. We want to make a difference. It’s great that The Cordish Companies wanted to recognize our efforts.”

The Cordish Companies’ Live! Casino & Hotel is one of the largest commercial casinos in the country, and features more than 200 live action table games dining and entertainment.

“This event is a highpoint of the year for the Live! family, as it allows us to bring together some of the most notable influencers, trailblazers, and mentors that are making significant contributions throughout the region,” said Robert J. Norton, President, Cordish Global Gaming Group.”

Wayne Frazier is President of the Md. Washington Minority Companies Association.

“The Cordish Companies believes in giving back, and as of this year, they have given more back to the community than any other casino,” said Frazier. This is just a small token in recognizing those who have come before us and have done great things over the course of their lives in religion, health, education, business, athletics, and politics. All of those areas were represented here tonight.”

He added, “The recognition of Joy Bramble of The Baltimore Times was one of respect for Joy who founded a woman-owned business in a male-dominated industry. She founded the newspaper, endured, and overcame all of the obstacles she had to face. The publication is still viable and going strong today.”

The Baltimore Times publication was birthed on the kitchen table of Bramble, and her husband, The Rev. Peter Bramble, in November 1986. The Brambles began printing “positive stories about positive people” and watched their company grow from a one-computer operation in their kitchen to one of the largest circulated African American publications on the East Coast.

Today, readers enjoy The Baltimore Times, The Annapolis Times, newspapers, as well as a host of events and activities such as Health Expos, educational forums, workshops and seminars directed toward communities most affected by the disparities in healthcare, business, finance, and other areas that impact the quality of life.