Press Release: P.R.O.M.M. Parents & Relatives Of the Missing & Murdered Organization Formed

Parents & Relatives Of the Missing & Murdered

P. O. Box 2978

Rocky Mount, NC 27802

For Immediate Release Contact: Ms. Jackie Wiggins

(252) 210-3100 or (252) 266-8777

Family Members of Missing & Murdered Women Announce Formation of Organization for Support & Closure

Rocky Mount – The family members of women who lost their lives on the streets of Rocky Mount and Edgecombe County and who have been reported missing have come together to bring structure, support and closure for them and their families. At a meeting held at OIC on Friday, December 18, over half of the parents, children and friends formed P.R.O.M.M. to serve as an effort to support the needs and concerns of close relatives and outreach to people whose lives are still at risk because of drug addictions and prostitution.

“We appreciate all the efforts of those who have advocated on our behalf,” Jackie Wiggins, President of PROMM and mother of victim Jackie ‘Nikki’ Thorpe stated, “but it is time that we stood up for our family and for ourselves. It is our daughters and close relatives who were brutalized and murdered or abducted. It is up to us to communicate to the world our pain, our loss and our anger. It’s also up to us to help rescue other women and men who are still living the same lifestyles that our daughters and their friends did.”

Juray Tucker, mother of missing Yolanda Lancaster added, “no one lives with the pain and memories of their family like we do. We don’t expect others to care like we do if they are not found or their murderers haven’t been identified. We are standing together as family and friends because we just can’t move on like nothing has happened.”

And other survivors of the murdered and missing agree. “We find strength just sitting and sharing the good and the bad times that we had with our daughters,” Patsy Hargrove, mother of victim Jarneice Hargrove said. “We know what we would do if we just had another day, a second chance to talk with our daughters or just see them. Maybe we can help other mothers and family members of the young ladies who are still on the streets. Maybe we can help find the ones who took our babies’ lives.”

“PROMM is working to provide counseling, encouragement and accessibility to a safe haven that offers rest, nourishment and referrals for women who are selling themselves right now to fulfill something that money won’t buy,” Deborah Lucky, friend of victim Elizabeth Smallwood explained. “We want to make sure that people know that someone cares about them and that they don’t have to trade themselves for security and acceptance. We also want to make sure that the family members left behind are nurtured and assisted.”

The group plans to meet regularly to offer emotional and financial support to family members of the missing and murdered. “We are also reaching out to other organizations like ours across the country,” Jackie Wiggins reiterated, “We aren’t trying to reinvent anything. We just want to make sure that people who want to help us know that we are doing something for ourselves. They can work with us directly.”

Contributions to survivors of the murdered or missing can be made payable to PROMM in c/o OIC, Inc. “All funds will be strictly accounted for and applied to the needs of the children and family of the missing or murdered women,” Andre’ Knight, President of the Rocky Mount branch of the NAACP stated. “These mothers and family are speaking for themselves and their concerns. We support them and want them to know that we are working for them.”

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P.R.O.M.M….Hope on One Accord!

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Health Bill Passes Key Test in the Senate: Resource New York Times

WASHINGTON — After a long day of acid, partisan debate, Senate Democrats held ranks early Monday in a dead-of-night procedural vote that proved they had locked in the decisive margin needed to pass a far-reaching overhaul of the nation’s health care system. (Read more @ The New York Times)

The John Hope Franklin File: FBI Looked At Esteemed Historian For Communist Ties: Resource Talking Points Memo

The celebrated historian John Hope Franklin was scrutinized by the FBI in the 1960s for supposed links to communists, particularly his opposition to the House Committee on Un-American Activities and his vocal support for W.E.B. Du Bois. (Read more @ TPM)

Employment: VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT- Office of Cong. G. K. Butterfield – District 1

VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT- Office of Cong. G. K. Butterfield – District 1

JOB DESCRIPTION:

District Director/Director of External Affairs

SUMMARY

The District Director/Director of External Affairs (“District Director”) oversees all district office operations, and serves as the local liaison with elected and appointed officials, and community leaders throughout the First Congressional District.  This position develops and proactively implements policy objectives, strategies and operating plans for the Member’s district office(s) and directs all Member activities and staff.  Additionally, the District Director is responsible for arranging and attending meetings on behalf of the Congressman.  The position reports directly to the Chief of Staff.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Representing the Member

  • Represents the Member and/or assigns appropriate staff as needed, which may include work on nights and weekends
  • Monitors the House and Member’s schedule (daily and monthly) and provides advice and recommendations for attendance by the Congressman
  • Speaks to local groups when the Member is unavailable
  • Responds to constituent calls and mail, as directed by the Member and the Chief of Staff
  • Identifies district priorities to be added to the member’s schedule; directs appropriate staff to attend events when the member is unavailable
  • Facilitates and responds to meeting requests with constituents, elected officials, and others as directed by the member and the Chief of Staff 

Managing District Office Staff and Activities

  • Manages district office(s) and district staff; Appraises staff performance and recommends rewards and disciplinary action
  • Plans and assigns work of staff in district offices; manages “Hot Topic” casework and works with DC staff to ensure timely and accurate responses to mass inquiries
  • Assigns staff to attend scheduled meetings and events with the Member, and ensures “coverage” if the Member is unable to attend
  • Works with district staff to develop “Action Plans” to fulfill their stated duties and responsibilities; monitors progress via monthly work reports
  • Interviews, selects and trains employees of district office(s),  in consultation with the Chief of Staff, and ensures that district office(s) staff complies with office policies, practices, and procedures
  • Conducts weekly staff meetings; Prepares and leads district agenda for other meetings
  • Coordinates selection and manages activities of interns and fellows
  • Oversees all activities assigned to district staff
  • Writes letters, prepares mass mailings, and monitors outgoing staff communications

Strategic Outreach

  • Develops and implements an outreach plan to maximize and prioritize Member’s time in the district (suggests approximately 5 – 7 events or activities per month, focusing particularly on Mondays and Fridays)
  • Monitors news and upcoming events in the 23 counties and develops a strategy for coverage at meetings and events.  Keeps official calendar of district events, and prepares a monthly report of recommended upcoming events for review to the Congressman and Chief of Staff
  • Establish and maintain relationship with counterparts in the NC Delegation
  • Travels throughout the district at regular intervals to keep abreast of local concerns
  • Meets with elected officials and representatives of local groups on behalf of the member
  • Schedules meetings with federal and district government agencies, as necessary
  • Works closely with DC staff to plan and coordinate District Work Period activities; Assigns district staff to staff events in the district
  • Plans, manages and supervises annual district events/activities, including Academy nominations, CBC Scholarship Competition, District Arts Competition, Veterans Day Events, Gospel Extravaganza, MLK Jr. Day, Memorial Day and Weldon Day.  Works with DC staff to coordinate efforts and publicize events.
  • Travels to district offices as needed
  • Works with DC staff to identify and plan at least four (major) district events each year

DC/District Liaison

  • Maintains close communication with the Washington, D.C. office via the Chief of Staff; initiates weekly calls to provide updates of district activities and events
  • Monitors state government activities (legislative, executive and judicial), and reports on issues that affect the District and the Member’s priorities.  Shares information with the Legislative Director, Communications Director and Chief of Staff, in a manner that allows for prompt response and input
  • Works with Communications Director to ensure that website content related to district activities is accurate and up-to-date.  Performs quarterly review of static information related to the District
  • Monitors status of district appropriations requests and grant applications
  • Identifies issues and concerns that may require legislative action and makes recommendations to Member, the Legislative Director, and the Chief of Staff.
  • Monitors progress of major legislative initiatives at state and federal level – makes recommendations for outreach and Member input
  • Identifies opportunities for federal legislation
  • Prepares a monthly report of activities for the Congressman and Chief of Staff

Staffing Member in the District

  • Prepares Member for district events/meetings; prepared daily or weekend briefing books for the Member while in the District
  • Works with Communications Director to ensure that the Congressman has talking points, background information, speeches, etc., when needed
  • Provides Congressman with daily updates on District activities via morning call-in, and otherwise, as necessary
  • Staffs the Member and/or assigns appropriate staff while Member is in the District; such work may nights and weekends

REQUIRED SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS

· Bachelor’s degree in political science or related/relevant field

· Three to seven years of management experience

· Extensive knowledge of Eastern North Carolina and demonstrable ties to the community

· Knowledge of legislative process and procedure; prior Congressional experience is a plus

· Strong oral and written communications skills

· Ability to work flexible hours which may include nights, weekends, and occasional overnight stays

· Knowledge/familiarity with local, state, and federal agencies and departments

· Thorough understanding of district and federal politics and the political process

· Experience with event planning

· Proficiency in Microsoft Office applications

· Ability to provide necessary organization, supervisory leadership and motivation to manage district office(s)

OTHER INFORMATION

· Salary:  Commensurate with experience.

· Location:  NC01 District Main Office (Wilson, NC) – could be flexible for the right candidate

· Starting Date:  January 2010

· Closing Date:  Until filled

HOW TO APPLY

· Please send your resume, cover letter, and a writing sample to NC01DistrictResume@mail.house.gov.

· Phone calls regarding the position will not be accepted.

In response to Edgecombe County Commissioner Viola Harris, ECC lastest Safe Negro response to Dr. Witherspoon Superintendent of Edgecombe County Public Schools being chosen to take over Birmingham School System

Monday December 21, 2009

2009-12-23_01-12-49-890

Commissioner Harris picture from video of Candidates Forums held in October recorded by The DCN.

First of all I want to say I know Viola Harris on a personal note.

I find Commissioner Harris’ letter to the editor “Witherspoon show us he doesn’t want to be here” dated Thursday December 17 to be somewhat comical especially coming from a person who is not a people’s person.

Just like she said she became more angrier as she read about Dr. Witherspoon applying for another job last year, I  was angry also as I read her letter. I have been angry since hearing about the letter on Friday December 18 but didn’t get to read the letter until I stopped by the Daily Southerner this morning Monday December 21.

Commissioner Harris you asked a question, “Does Dr. Witherspoon care about the art of teaching and training young people to be successful or going after who can pay the most bucks?” Well damn Commissioner Harris my question to you is, will he not be doing such but touching more than 3 times the amount of children  7,000 to 27,000 than he is now? How in the hell can you be angry with a man for wanting to continue to do what he does on a broader level and also making more money in the process which will be the norm since it will be more children and more schools. Damn along with the money comes more responsibility. Commissioner Harris although you are not one of my favorite folks, I did give you a little more credit than that.

In my opinion Dr. Witherspoon do not owe me an explanation why he is leaving because that is a personnel matter and you being a county commissioner and serve on various boards should know that better than most people. Those of us who know better know that we will not really find out why he wants to leave Edgecombe County. I attended the meetings around the county during the process of hiring a new Superintendent when Dr. Witherspoon was hired speaking out that I wanted to see a qualified black male, I repeat a qualified black male come into the county. I said that because it was so many white females in the system and I thought that would do away with some of the good ole boy mess. Some were afraid of him being hired and some never accepted him and never will if he stayed on. But you see that was/is a good thing.

Frankly Commissioner Harris I don’t give a damn why Dr. Witherspoon wants to leave. I know as a fact he was voted in and the vote was not unanimous unlike the vote in Birmingham. The majority of the time it is more than likely that a board will vote unanimous when hiring someone on that level so therefore it was clear there were some issues when he was hired. Board member Ann Kent was vocal about not hiring him up until the time he was hired.

Many folks in the know, know of the secret meetings that were being held and the letters trying to get the board to hire Dr. Lana VanderLinden. Since your comments in your letter, I am assuming that you may have been a part of that group that worked so hard trying to get her in 3 years ago.

Commissioner Harris I am glad to know you supported Dr. VanderLinden so therefore I will remind those whom you represent in your commissioner district during your next election they should remember this letter to the editor bashing Dr. Witherspoon. However the only problem is, I wish I lived in your district so that I could really campaign against you but I will be doing all that I can to make sure you are not re-elected.

Commissioner Harris you know for yourself that Edgecombe County is known for the good ole boys being in control. I believe I have heard you say on more than one occasion our children goes off to school and do not want to come back to Edgecombe County. If I am wrong I stand to be corrected. However I know you know this to be true. I do not think your children live here however I stand to be corrected again.

Dr. Witherspoon has the right to apply for any job anywhere he chooses and you nor I don’t have a say in the matter. How damn ignant (I know how to spell the word) can you be.

I be damn Commissioner Harris who in the hell left you as the Queen B . .  of Edgecombe County? Who are you to tell someone if they do not like Edgecombe County they should take the first train out. Dr. Witherspoon is like most folks, he didn’t take a train in so he will drive himself out the same way he came in.

Dr. Witherspoon didn’t have to bring his family here. Have you questioned those who work in Edgecombe County but do not live here. Hell if you want to question anything, why don’t you question why our board chair (black) and has served on the board for 15 plus years never had a child in the Edgecombe County Public Schools system? Have you asked why nearly half of the board member do not have children in the system?

Commissioner Harris I can’t believe you question Dr. Witherspoon’s loyalty.

Commissioner Harris I am glad to know that you supported Dr. Lana VanderLinden which is your choice. However I do have a problem with you supporting her when you are aware of the situation that happened at Tarboro High with the some grades when a black female (Glenn Hart’s daughter) was being cheated out of being Valedictorian and they tried to make a white female Dewey Hudson’s daughter the Valedictorian. But then again you have arrived so maybe you have forgotten. I also know of a black child whom was told she must have some white in her because she didn’t act like the other black students.

I was against Dr. VanderLinden then I will be against her in the future is she should apply. I will speak out against Dr. VinderLinden just like I did during the hiring of Dr. Witherspoon.

I do agree with you that, “People need to remember that we have people already in place who have been waiting for their opportunity to lead.” However just because they are waiting for the opportunity does not mean they are the one. Again how ignant can you be.

I also agree with you that, “Loyalty and dedication are still great assets.” How in the hell can you make it appear that Dr. Witherspoon has not been loyal and dedicated to the children of Edgecombe County? Being loyal and dedicated while holding an office from day one until the day one leaves is what counts. In my opinion Dr. Witherspoon has been all of that and in order for the board to renew his contract in 2009 until 2013 although he applied for a job in 2008, it is obvious they had no problem with his loyalty and dedication to the children of Education. I say to the children because they have no option but to go to school but the staff have options to go seek other employment. I know as a fact that many staff members didn’t like him and earlier I mentioned that was the reason why I wanted a black male.

I can say that Dr. Witherspoon has been loyal and dedicated to the children because the group Many Voices has carried several concerns to him and he responded as he said he would and the changes were made.

Now talk about Edgecombe County, loyalty and dedication. Why in the hell would an outsider want to come to Edgecombe County when the Edgecombe County Commissioners is loyal and dedicated to crooks in the county.

Commissioner Harris you have spoken for several folks in Edgecombe County that I am much aware of that share your opinion. One being this newspaper The Daily Southerner Editor Terry Smith who was very vocal during the hiring of Dr. Witherspoon was so glad to post your letter that he put your damn picture with your letter. You must feel special.

Commissioner Harris I have not seen or heard you speak out about the lawsuit when the county had to pay Rocky Mount City Councilman/NAACP President Rev. Andre Knight attorney fees because of Rev. Roosevelt Higgs and 2 former white female Board of Elections members whom tried to have him removed from the council. But instead you and the other black Edgecombe County Commissioners reappointed Rev. Higgs back on the Edgecombe County Human Relations Commission and now he is the chair. I addressed the board and the Edgecombe County Planning Department did atleast 2 presentations before commissioners showing that he didn’t live where he says he lived and how the cited him for illegal activity on the lot that has no living housing. You know that Rev. Higgs is a known criminal most recent I had to take him to court and he was found guilty of harassing me and then during the same time he was found guilty of assaulting his niece. However you have been much familiar with this crook because you have served on boards with him since the early 90’s that I know of when I became active in politics.

I have sent several emails to The Daily Southerner Editor Terry Smith and the other local newspaper (where I was told they let you go) about the county having to pay the attorney fees but they have not done a story on that. So you are helping them the local newspapers to discredit 2 brothers whom are not criminals but they are a part of promoting the brother with the criminal activity.

So Commissioner Harris I ask how in the hell can you allow Rev. Higgs to not only be a member but chair the Human Relations Commission when they are suppose to be about keeping harmony in the county? He has disrespected the County Commissioners and the Democratic Party whereby you are a member also on many occasions and you all continue to promote him.

Commissioner Harris you and other Safe Negroes in my opinion are the reason why Dr. Witherspoon is leaving. He is trying to do some positive things but having to deal with Safe Negroes whom do not support him but support criminals and I don’t say that loosely. And then you expect him to teach the children right from wrong when you and your fellow colleagues are promoting wrong.

Commissioner Harris thank you for this letter because you are a confirmation for what I have been talking about as it relates to Safe Negroes in Edgecombe County. This is why I say I will challenge any of you because I know all of you and what you stand for. I wish the others would write their letter also.

Commissioner Harris I am looking forward to meeting up with you during the public meetings to speak out about the hiring of the new Superintendent.

Note: I find it so damn funny that your letter is not online at The Daily Southerner letter to the editor column.

Curmilus Dancy II
The Political Agitator
An Effective Grassroots Community Activist

See related:

Edgecombe County Public Schools

This is what I said back in May 2008 and the same stands today

Note: Updated Tuesday December 22, 2009 1:28 AM.