NBA Star Dwyane Wade Promotes ‘This Is Fatherhood’ Challenge

this is fatherhood challenge
In an effort to promote fatherhood, award-winning filmmaker Art Hooker and former director of President Barack Obama’s Office Of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships Joshua DuBois have teamed up to create the “This Is Fatherhood” challenge.

Launched on May 1st, the challenge targets young Fathers who may need encouragement and support to become better parents. Contestants can submit videos, songs, and essays about fatherhood through June 10th. The winners will receive cash prizes and a trip to Washington, D.C., for a ceremony on Father’s Day.

Miami Heat player Dwyane Wade (pictured) has signed on to promote the challenge. As a Father with primary custody of his two sons, Wade says he is honored by the opportunity. “When I was first [approached to become] involved with the initiative, I was humbled,” Wade said. He noted the President’s fatherhood speeches as further inspiration. “More than that, I was moved by the fact that one of the reasons President Obama was so passionate about this issue is that he grew up without his dad. He, too, has recognized that being a Father is his most-important role.”

Obama’s Chicago speech in February helped inspire the challenge. In it, the President noted how “there are entire neighborhoods where young people, they don’t see an example of somebody succeeding. And for a lot of young boys and young men, in particular, they don’t see an example of Fathers or grandfathers, uncles, who are in a position to support families and be held up and respected.”

Wade appears along with Obama and Jay-Z in a public service announcement promoting “This Is Fatherhood.” Eugene Schneeberg, current director of  the Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, worked with predecessor DuBois to support Obama’s fatherhood program. He is also one of the challenge’s judges.

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Colonel John McKee, Unsung Hero of Fatherless Boys in Need Of Scholarships, Finally Gets Tombstone

Col. John McKee’s vision of his legacy, meticulously recorded in his will, was breathtaking:

A garrisonlike naval academy would grace the bank of the Delaware River in Bristol. A bronze replica of the colonel on horseback would survey the boys who traversed the integrated campus. Embossed on their brass buttons would be the name of McKee, said to be the richest African American at his death in 1902.

History did not quite unfold according to McKee’s plan.

Today, McKee remains an obscure giant of Philadelphia history, a businessman whose achievements in life have been at least matched by his contribution in death.

He is responsible for considerably more than 1,000 scholarships given to fatherless boys during the last 57 years, according to the administrator of a trust he endowed. In the last 10 years alone, the McKee Scholarships have funded almost $4 million for the postsecondary education of 239 young men.

And yet for 89 years, he lay in an unmarked grave; not the brick-and-marble family vault he ordered in his will, not even in his original plot.

McKee wrote his will almost two years before his death, drafting exactly how he wanted to be remembered. But even with a fortune estimated at $2 million, in death he quickly lost control of events.

Born in Alexandria, Va., McKee made his way at 21 to Philadelphia in the early 1840s.

He initially found work in a livery stable and then a restaurant at Eighth and Market Streets owned by James Prosser, a well-known African American caterer. McKee married Prosser’s daughter Emeline, and ran the restaurant until 1866, before he started buying property throughout Philadelphia.

At his death, his holdings were an empire: more than 300 rental houses in the city, as well as his own house at 1030 Lombard St., an estate in Bristol Township, Bucks County, and several hundred thousand acres throughout West Virginia, Georgia, and Kentucky. Continue reading