Victorine Quille Adams: First Black Woman Elected To Baltimore City Council

Baltimore native Victorine Quille Adams became the first black woman elected to the city council and proved herself as a civic leader and pioneer in African American politics.

Born in 1912, Adams lived through stringent segregation, racial violence and economic turbulence.

She attended Morgan State and Coppin State universities and, according to a new book, she took to the classroom and enriched the lives of her students.

In 1946, she founded the Colored Women’s Democratic Campaign Committee to educate African American women about the vote and the power of the ballot box.

In concert with fellow educators Mary McLeod Bethune, Kate Sheppard and Dr. Delores Hunt, Adams persisted in educating and empowering voters throughout her life.

Author Ida E. Jones, who serves as archivist at Morgan State University, revealed the story of Adams and her crusade for equity for all people in Baltimore in Jones’ new book, “Baltimore Civil Rights Leader Victorine Q. Adams: The Power of the Ballot.”

“She was a force so imposing that she couldn’t be overshadowed by any man— not even her husband, the Baltimore gambling kingpin, William ‘Little Willie’ Adams,’” Jones writes in the book.

“When some suggested that she won the 1967 election solely because her wealthy husband financed her campaign, she wrote the following rebuttal: ‘I should be regarded not only as the wife of Willie Adams but as a woman who has used her influence and affluence to better the community in which she lives,’” Jones said.

In capturing Adams’ story, Jones says she sought to document all the various lines that Adams crossed in her 93-year life including racial, gender and voter registration.

Following Adams’ death in 2006, then Baltimore City Council President Sheila Dixon was among the many who paid tribute.

“She was a very fiery woman at a time when, in city government, women were in the minority,” Dixon said. “That kind of a voice for those who didn’t have a voice was so key to city government.

In 1946, Adams founded the Colored Women’s Democratic Campaign Committee reportedly to mobilize support for candidates who were sympathetic to black causes. From her living room, Adams pushed for change and African American voter registration.

She was credited with helping to state a key victory in 1954 when Judge Harry A. Cole, a young black Republican lawyer, won a state Senate seat over a white Democrat.

In 1962, Adams ran unsuccessfully for state Senate but four years later she won election to the House of Delegates. One year later, Adams resigned from the House of Delegates and won election to Baltimore City Council— a seat she held for four terms.

Among her vast accomplishments, Adams led fundraising efforts for the former Provident Hospital, the city’s only minority-owned hospital. She served as a member of the National Council of Negro Women; was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1964; and served as a local election campaign director for President Lyndon B. Johnson.

“The lady always looked out for people in need.

Always,” then State Sen. George W. Della Jr., told reporters after Adams’ death in 2006. “That is what she was in public office to do, to make things better for those in need and she did a great job.”

SBLC Salutes ‘The Stars Among Us’ At Annual Gala

— SBLC, a Baltimore nonprofit that provides functional literacy, life skills training and career preparation services for adults, is hosting its annual gala Saturday, April 13, 2019 from 7:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel located at 202 East Pratt Street in Baltimore City.

This year’s theme, “The Stars Among Us,” pays tribute to SBLC’s learners, volunteers, staff and supporters. Vytas Reid, chief meteorologist for Fox 45, will serve as master of ceremonies.

The goal of the gala is to raise $100,000 to assist with adult literacy and workforce development programs that help the more than 700 learners who study at SBLC each year. M&T Bank is the gala’s “Graduate Level” sponsor.

The evening features live music by Advanced Party Solutions, a photo booth, games, raffle showcase, a video and more. Dinner will be served as a buffet with food stations featuring Baltimore restaurants including Blue Agave, DiPasquale’s Italian Market, Germano’s Piattini, Great American Cookie, MaGerk’s, Matsuri, Roma Sausage, Row House and United Shell Fish.

The raffle showcase features several themed packages including:

Charm City Chic: Travel by private limousine for a luxurious night at the Four Seasons Hotel in Baltimore’s Harbor East. Enjoy an ultimate spa experience, followed by dinner at Bygone Restaurant. The package includes tickets to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, cognac and cigars at Quintessential Gentleman, shows at the Hippodrome, Charles and Everyman theaters, trendy restaurants (including Charleston), a Robert McClintock original print of the Baltimore skyline and more.

Fun in the SUNshine State: Spend a weekend for two at the Hammock Beach Resort, a premier oceanfront golf destination and spa. Enjoy this Palm Coast ‘suite’ experience, have fun at the beach, relax in the spa or enjoy a round of golf. The package includes air travel for two valued at $400 per person, a car rental voucher, two-nights’ accommodation and a resort credit of $400 for spa and golf.

New York, New York: Travel to the Big Apple with two roundtrip train tickets and two nights in Midtown Manhattan at the exclusive Harvard Club. Use your New York Passes to reach your choice of hundreds of attractions. Enjoy dinner at Carmine’s in Times Square, lunch at 5 Napkin Burger and a decadent dessert at Junior’s Cheesecake. Get glammed up with a private stylist and tour three boutiques for a personal styling session. Grab some stylish, free accessories, or use your $250 American Express gift card to splurge.

La Ville Lumière, Paris, City of Light: Discover the Paris that only a Parisian could know. Book a flight for two using a $2,000 American Express gift card for a weeklong stay in a charming Paris flat within walking distance of the Notre Dame de Paris and the Louvre. The trip includes a bike tour and food tastings at local French markets.

Raffle tickets cost $50 each or three for $100 and may be purchased in advance at: or by calling SBLC at 410-625-4215.

Tickets to the gala cost $125 ($75 for young professionals) and may be purchased at

Tight End Nick Boyle Sets The Tone For The Ravens

Back in 2015, the Baltimore Ravens attempted to revamp their tight end group. The team used a second-round pick on Maxx Williams and a fifth-round pick on Nick Boyle. Three years later, the Ravens found themselves taking two more tight ends in Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews.

Boyle still managed to carve out enough of a role in the Ravens’ offense to warrant getting a contract extension. Baltimore signed Boyle to a three-year deal worth $18 million. Although he only caught 23 passes and failed to score a touchdown last season, Boyle is a valuable player to head coach John Harbaugh.

“I think Nick is a huge piece of our offense going forward. The tone he sets, the type of player he is— I’d say he’s the best blocking in the league. He sets the edge, he sets the tempo,” Harbaugh said.

Boyle’s blocking was critical when the Ravens shifted to a run-heavy offense with Lamar Jackson under center. At 6-foot-4, 270 pounds, Boyle is able to make crushing blocks that spring ball carriers for big gains. Boyle’s role will increase with new offensive coordinator Greg Roman reconfigured offense in 2019.

His physical play is something the team feeds off. Watch how his teammates react when he pancakes a defender. For Boyle, it’s a pleasure to be called upon to do the dirty work.

“I have a lot of pride in what I do whether it’s catching a pass or making a key block on a certain play. I get the same satisfaction out of it,” Boyle explained.

Teams that prepare for the Ravens see how he makes blocks in space and how he is able to take on defensive lineman at the line of scrimmage. His physical play sends the message that facing the Ravens is going to be a dogfight. Baltimore is a tough, gritty city so fans appreciate the rugged style of football from their team.

The Ravens knew Boyle would be a perfect match for Baltimore when they evaluated him before the 2015 NFL Draft. Harbaugh said what Boyle brings to the team in terms of what it means to be a Raven and play like a Raven is something he’s impressed with.

“That’s something we saw at Delaware in his college tape. We felt like he fit us perfectly. He’s our kind of player. He’s what Baltimore fans appreciate and love about their football team,” Harbaugh added.

He also pointed to Boyle’s work ethic in the weight room. Boyle’s impact goes beyond his performance on the field. Now Boyle at 26 years old will be the elder statesman of the tight end group.

Other teams know he brings value beyond statistics. That’s why there were going to be plenty of teams lining up to retain Boyle’s services on the free agent market. In the end, Boyle knew where he wanted to be.

“I didn’t want to be in any other place,” Boyle said. “I wanted to come back right away. I didn’t want to go to another team. We love it here and love the relationships we have.”

Kromah Gallery Fundraising Event

Do you remember Kromah Gallery? It was an art gallery founded by Ernest and Gail Kromah in 1978, at 1203 Druid Hill Avenue near Dolphin Street. The purpose of the gallery was to showcase the works of African American Artists in Baltimore City who were overlooked in the mainstream art world.

Ernest and Gail Kromah, Founders

Ernest and Gail Kromah, Founders

That legacy is worthy of celebration. To that end, Kromah Gallery is not only reviving the gallery as a resource for young and experienced artists, it is also celebrating its vibrant history on March 28th, 2019, at the Eubie Blake Jazz Institute and Cultural Center at 847 N. Howard Street, 21201, from 5:30 to 8:30 pm.

The event will include a retrospective exhibit of events at its first location, and subsequent locations, as well as testimonials from those who participated in establishing its notoriety as the iconic legacy, Kromah Gallery.

For further information, please contact Gail Kromah at (443) 739-4348, Salima Marriott-Gibbs at (443) 948-8004 or Vernard Gray at (202)262.7571.

Born in Baltimore 2019: Opportunity For Filmmakers, Photographers, Animators!

Baltimore‚ The Born in Baltimore Film & Photography Festival is now accepting submissions for its third annual event! Sponsored by Baltimore Youth Film Arts, this festival celebrates new voices in cinema and photographic arts.

Filmmakers, photographers, and animators of all ages and levels of experience whose work is of, from, and about Baltimore are invited to submit (for free!) before April 15, 2019. The Festival seeks images, sounds, and textures that are uniquely Baltimore; the music, the faces, the stories of our city and its citizens, past and present, young and old, native and newly arrived.

Born in Baltimore will be held at the Creative Alliance on Saturday, June 29, 2019. More information about the festival and application instructions can be found at Artists can also apply directly on FilmFreeway at

Young Baltimore Women Putting Off Pregnancy, Picking Up Diplomas

The trend is unmistakable. The story— by the numbers— confirms that young women in Baltimore have reversed course dramatically from two to three decades ago when teenage motherhood was epidemic. Not only do statistics show young women eschewing underage pregnancy, they also reveal a dramatic spike in enrollment and matriculation from colleges and universities.

In both the areas of decreased pregnancy and increased education attainment, teens and young women in Baltimore are mirroring a national trend. The numbers are stark. In Baltimore City, teen pregnancy in 1997 was roughly 4.5 percent, dropping to 3.7 percent by 2001; 3.2 percent by 2005; and 2.9 percent by 2017. Concurrently, national teen pregnancy statistics fell just as precipitously, going from 4.1 percent in 2007 to 2.9 percent in 2012; and 2.0 percent by 2016.

Baltimore teens accomplished this phenomenal turnaround with help from the City of Baltimore through programs facilitated by the Health Department, and also with private sector support.

The Baltimore City Health Department, partnering with Family League of Baltimore, developed TPPI, the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative, for teens at-risk to become pregnant. Under this arrangement, and with the participation of other stakeholders in the social sciences and medical fields, TPPI addressed factors related to policies, systems and services for families and the community through four primary methods:

•A taskforce comprised of academic, medical and community agencies developing strategy, plans and implementation procedures.

•Engagement and outreach operations to improve clinical services for adolescents and facilitate easier teen access to services, including home visits.

•A Youth Advisory Council staffed by a group of youth from Baltimore City meeting bi-monthly to offer feedback and share ideas. These youth conducted intake for teens with questions and did community outreach, including home visits.

•A social media campaign entitled “Know What U Want U Choose” acknowledges young adult’s desire for emancipation and assists them to develop blueprints for their futures interactively via Internet

While the teens’ attention was held by their pregnancy-prevention mentors, they were counseled at the same time to pursue their educational and career aspirations in anticipation of being better prepared, stable mothers— eventually. The following statistics strongly suggest that young women who previously participated en masse in at-risk-for-pregnancy behavior, were now outnumbering young men in college placement in Baltimore City-area colleges.

These are the female enrollment numbers: The Community College of Baltimore County, 59.93 percent. Towson University, 61.4 percent. Johns Hopkins University, 51.31 percent. University of Maryland-Baltimore County, 46.78 percent. Baltimore City Community College, 67.28 percent. Morgan State University, 55.84 percent. University of Baltimore, 58.02 percent. Loyola University Maryland, 61.84 percent. Stevenson University, 67.06 percent. University of Maryland-Baltimore, 72.08 percent. Notre Dame of Maryland University, 86.08 percent.

These reversals of fortune are stunning. For ambitious young women who were not inclined to an academic higher education, the military was the viable option. Not only will the Federal government provide higher education benefits to veterans after their tours of duty are completed, the breadth and scope of specialized training in the military provides female vets with a plethora of well-paying post-military professional opportunities, and lifetime medical benefits.

Despite education, job training and medical benefits available from the military, it must not be ignored that war is the military’s primary business. Young women signing up for military duty during wartime, as the U.S. has been engaged now for 18 straight years, speaks to the bravery, courage and honor of would-be teen moms from Baltimore and elsewhere.

UM School Of Dentistry Cares For Hundreds At Mission Of Mercy

The setting was a building being converted from industrial use to startups in a neighborhood near the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). On its seventh floor, a dental clinic took shape, beckoning adults whose circumstances in life had led them to forgo dental care for months, or in some cases, for years or even decades.

There the action centered on 200 students of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry (UMSOD), who cared for more than 600 people at the 2019 Baltimore Mission of Mercy, and on patients who were eager for treatment.

One was Calvin Daniel, a retired bus driver who confided he had neglected his oral health for years. But no more. “Something had to be done,” he said. An evaluation indicated four teeth were unhealthy.

Fourth-year dental student Melissa Lee, assisted by Miah Ramsey, performed the extractions. Said Daniel, “They really made me comfortable. I didn’t feel any pain at all, didn’t have any regrets at all.”

Organized by UMSOD and the United Way of Central Maryland (UWCM), the event took place on Feb. 28 and March 1. Students were joined by supervising faculty members, dozens of UMSOD staff members, and volunteers from UMB and supporting organizations.

“I am extremely proud of what the University of Maryland School of Dentistry’s faculty, staff, and student volunteers accomplished in two days. At the Mission of Mercy, we were able to offer needed dental care to more than 600 of our fellow community residents,” said Dr. Mark A. Reynolds, dean of UMSOD. “Many of these individuals have limited resources, and our overall aim was to provide to them quality oral health care, which is an integral part of overall health and the quality of life.”

Patients were 18 and older and in need of obtaining extractions, restorations (fillings), and cleanings. Overall, patients received dental care valued at $612,340 in a total of 1,743 procedures, according to Mission of Mercy organizer Scott Gottbreht, associate vice president for homeless services, impact strategies at UWCM.

“The need for oral health care is just so great, we need to have these types of activities,” said Dr. Louis G. DePaola, associate dean of clinical affairs at UMSOD, adding that many patients “would have no access to dental care” otherwise.

About 60 percent of the 100 chairs at the Mission of Mercy were dedicated to oral surgery and the extraction of teeth because that is the greatest need, DePaola said. For those patients, extraction of diseased teeth will improve the level of their oral health and removes potential sources of infection. For many, the procedure also eliminate the pain associated with dental decay.

James Gee, a retired employee of the Baltimore City Schools system, said one tooth in particular had been hurting. Afterward, he expressed gratitude and said the students had calmed his nerves. “They made me feel like I was getting a haircut or something like that,” he said, instead of the four extractions he had required.

“Some of these patients are getting all their teeth extracted,” observed Ramsay Koury, DMD, clinical assistant professor and the Mission of Mercy organizer at UMSOD. Others are elated when their badly deteriorated front teeth are restored, he said. “A lot of these patients will shed tears and hug them and tell them how grateful they are. That sense of fulfillment and accomplishment is unparalleled.”

Student David Anguiano, a member of the DDS Class of 2019, said: “One of reasons I pursued dentistry was to help others. In the present time, this Mission of Mercy is one of things I can do to start helping people.”

Patients who needed dental hygiene services were seen on Friday.

Everyone who registered was given a medical screening and offered testing for HIV and the hepatitis C virus. The latter was offered by the JACQUES Initiative of the University of Maryland School of Medicine. The former was conducted by physicians and nurse practitioners from Saint Agnes Healthcare, who were assisted by Bachelor of Science in Nursing students from the University of Maryland School of Nursing.

“One notable aspect of the event is that it aligns perfectly with our Medical Mission at Home strategic imperative and gives volunteers from providers and nonprofits in the area a chance to collaborate and interact with each other while serving our community,” said Chris A. Chekouras, MBA, president and chief operating officer of Saint Agnes, Ascension.

In addition to Saint Agnes, Ascension, supporting partners included the Maryland State Dental Association Foundation and CareFirst, BlueCross, BlueShield.

Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar Returns Sunday, April 7th

The Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar offers a can’t-miss food experience! The market produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) begins Sundays April 7 through December 22, 2019 from 7 a.m. to noon, located on Saratoga Street between Holliday and Gay streets, underneath the Jones Falls Expressway.

On opening day, the first 100 visitors to the Welcome Tent receive a market tote bag; young musicians with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids perform starting at 9:30 a.m.; and BOPA’s Brand Ambassadors hand out giveaways and news on BOPA’s events and programs.

The annual market features a variety of fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats and seafood, breads, plants and made-to-order food, in addition to handmade accessories, vintage clothing, natural bath and body products, home furnishings, souvenirs and original works of art.

Each Sunday from May to December, the market holds a First Sundays event with giveaways, discounts, crafts and special guests, vendors and organizations. The 2019 themes include: Bike to Market Day (May 5), Nurse Appreciation Day (June 2), Independent Women (July 7), First Responder Day (August 4), Back to School Teacher Appreciation (September 1), Fall Harvest (October 6), Meet the Farmers (November 3) and Holiday Art Expo (December 1).

Also during the first Sunday of each month from May to October from 9am to 10:30am, the market hosts free Chef Egg Live: Farmers’ Market Family Classes supported by the Bright StARTS program, proceeded by a shopping tour of the market. Visit Eventbrite for online registration.

For more information on the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar, visit: or call 410-752-8632.

Sign up for the monthly market newsletter at bmorefarmersmarket.

14th Annual Money Power Day Set For Saturday, March 30

The 14th annual Money Power Day, the region’s biggest free financial fitness fair for the whole family, will be held on Saturday, March 30, 2019, at the Poly-Western High School Campus.

The nonprofit CASH— Creating Assets, Savings and Hope— Campaign of Maryland again will host this important community event that provides valuable resources and information to people of all ages.

“The main goal of Money Power Day is to connect Baltimore residents to high-quality, unbiased financial information services that are often out of reach for most of us, said Courtney Bettle, the director of Financial Capability at CASH. “People come to Money Power Day because they don’t want to just get by, they want to get ahead and have the peace-of-mind that comes with financial security.”

Among the more common responses, “they don’t teach this in school” or “I want to set my kids up for financial success,” Bettle added. “That’s why we’ve designed an event with everyone in mind whether they are young or older, mid-career professionals new parents, unemployed or underemployed, entrepreneurs— Money Power Day is for everyone.”

The free event kicks off at 9 a.m. and will include a MECU-sponsored Exhibitor Hall with more than 45 vetted-for-quality nonprofits, businesses, and government organizations who will provide on-site financial services, information and education that participants can use immediately to boost their financial power.

A BB&T-sponsored Small Business Zone will allow for one-on-one advice from entrepreneurship experts where attendees can learn about business planning, structure, taxes and other essentials.

Anyone attending will also be eligible to “Pitch Your Side Hustle,” a contest that includes a $750 first place prize.

M&T-sponsored workshops will cover various topics to help individuals learn the steps to getting out of debt, and achieving their financial dreams, including how to buy a home or start or grow a small business.

Wells Fargo will sponsor a Credit Café to assist participants in obtaining their credit report for free and getting their credit score with one-on-one credit counseling for credit and financial information.

The event will also feature a Kids Zone; College & Career Access Zone; and a Financial Planning Zone. There also will be free tax preparation services with IRS-certified volunteers and tax lien foreclosure assistance.

“All of the favorites are back this year: free credit reports and counseling in the Credit Cafe; business growth and development advice in the Small Business Zone; high-quality financial advice from our professional financial planners; fun prizes and raffle baskets; and the shredder truck,” Bettle said. “For the first time, we’re welcoming Stacy Tisdale, the award-winning financial journalist, author and financial behavior expert behind Mind Money Media to guide our participants through proven strategies for reaching their financial goals.”

Also, representatives from the Mayor’s Office of Employment Development will be onsite to help participants connect to higher paying jobs and careers with their Mobile Workforce Center, Bettle said. “You don’t need to prepare anything to take advantage of Money Power Day, but you’re welcome to bring financial documents that you’re unclear about, a financial plan you’ve been thinking through, or just a list of questions.

“Bring the kids because we’re got a zone dedicated just for them. Come ready to learn and bring a bag to carry all of the financial resources and prizes we’ll be giving out. This day is for you.”

For more information about Power Money Day, visit: and

Ravens Losing A Great One In Special Teams Coach Jerry Rosburg

As a former special teams coach for the Philadelphia Eagles, John Harbaugh knew the importance of special teams when he was hired as the Baltimore Ravens head coach. Harbaugh pushed to make sure one of his long-time friends Jerry Rosburg came to Baltimore with him.

“We came in together 11 years ago and before that, Jerry has been my best friend for 25 years. It was really important to me to have him by my side. Without Jerry Rosburg here, there’s no way we could have the success we had and be here today,” Harbaugh said.

While the Ravens have always had a trademark of being an outstanding defensive team, under Harbaugh and Rosburg the special teams unit was elevated to an elite level. They’ve been together on the Ravens since 2008.

Kicker Justin Tucker’s 90.1 field goal percentage is among the most accurate ever. Punter Sam Koch is a perennial Pro Bowler and long snapper; and Morgan Cox has been named to multiple Pro Bowls as well.

Rosburg also served as associate head coach for Harbaugh. He played an integral role in the Ravens success, which has yielded a Super Bowl win and multiple trips deep into the playoffs.

The work of an NFL coach comes with collateral damage. Coaches lose valuable family time and miss numerous special events. Rosburg credited his wife Sherry for doing an excellent job of maintaining their household while he put in so much time at work. He and his wife have three children— Meghan, Jarred and Margaret.

Rosburg loved his job, but made an understandable decision to focus more on his family.

“I had the best job in the world with the best boss in the world,” Rosburg said. “The reasons for my retirement are numerous, all of which are personal. I have a lot of plans. My plans center around my family and I don’t want to miss anymore hockey and volleyball games.”

Rosburg kept his retirement press conference brief before exiting the stage without fielding questions.

He left the focus to turn to Harbaugh and Chris Horton who will replace him after serving the last five years as a special teams assistant.

Rosburg will initially be available in a consultant capacity to ease the transition.

Harbaugh described Rosburg’s departure best when he quoted Douglas MacArthur, “True soldiers never die they just fade away.”