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An Open Letter to the Christian Community

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Over the past few days, I have read about Chick-fil-A “Appreciation Day” when throngs of individuals descended upon stores across the nation to purchase food in support of the fast food chains’ anti-gay stance.

I do not criticize the necessity to deliver an important societal message about our values. It is good to stand for what we believe. I do wonder about what I have not seen. I have not seen an organized effort to focus our local and national leaders on the plight of women and children sleeping on our streets. I have not seen our ministers express concerns about the number of individuals at our local county hospitals without health insurance waiting 10 to 12 hours to see doctors; nor have I heard an outcry about the capability for any one troubled soul to purchase high capacity weapons and subsequently wreak havoc in our cities.

Do we really care about widows and orphans? What are we doing to help teenage girls who don’t abort their pregnancies? Has anyone challenged that nationally known radio personality about his/her racist statements, and/or do we secretly smile when we read a bumper sticker that reads “don’t re-nig in 2012?” Oftentimes I am reminded of a sentiment expressed by the enemy (the devil’s angel) in the “ScrewTape Letters,” that if followers of Christ are allowed to focus on events that are emotionally charged, they will forget their mission. Are we Christians allowing the enemy to divert us from our mission?

M. Jean Peacock, Ph.D

First Stop Big Apple, Next Stop Westwood

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By Earl Heath

New York, NY - There's plenty to smile about in Westwood as super southpaw Paige McDuffie will be attending UCLA this fall. This reporter recently caught up with her at the Triple Crown Sports National Tournament held at Randalls Island in New York City were I asked why she chose to play for the Bruins. "The coaches are cool and the school has a great history and tradition. The academics are also good,” said McDuffie.

The Woodlands (Houston, TX) ace had a super high school career haven been named the 2010-2011 Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year after putting together a 37-1 record and a 0.97 ERA. She struck out 244 batters in 216 innings. She's also good with the bat hitting .415 with 42 RBI's. The Class 5A Player of the Year, she led the Lady Highlanders to a 44-1 record and a No. 1 national ranking to go along with a state title. McDuffie, also pitches for a travel ball called Impact Gold. "She can throw all the pitches - rise, drop, curve, and change-up," said Impact coach K.C. Jackson. She has hit 70-miles per hour regularly with her fastball.

"Paige is a powerful left-handed pitcher who had an outstanding junior year in Texas," UCLA coach Kelly Inouye-Perez told Softball Today. "She has command of all pitches and we look forward to her joining the Bruin family and the history of powerful pitchers in the circle for UCLA." The talent filled tournament also brought in more than 125 college coaches from around the country that included the University of Arizona and Olympic coach Mike Candrea. St. Johns University head coach Amy Kvilhaug was also looking at players. "We get a chance to see the players in action. We can see how they react after a bad play at bat and after a tough loss. Are they going to get up and come back strong?" said Kvilhaug. "A tournament like this can show what's in a player." St Johns is in the Big East a conference that sent five teams to the 2012 NCAA Tournament highlights: some games were televised on the CBS sports channel. However the ultimate at bat came from Lindsey Wilmon from Pleasant, California (Pleasant Grove High School), the So Cal 18U Choppers ripped a grand slam homerun. The unusual thing about the towering blast is the ball traveled over the outfield fence, over a moving car, over a parked eighteen wheeler, over another parked car, over a picnic table, took a bounce and landed on a smoking barbecue grill. In all, the ball travelled more than 375-feet.

CSUSB Named A “2012 Great College To Work For”

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SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. – California State University, San Bernardino joined elite company when it was named one of the best colleges in the nation to work for, according to a new survey by The Chronicle of Higher Education. The Chronicle’s fifth annual report on The Academic Workplace based its results on a survey of more than 46,000 employees at 294 colleges and universities. In all, only 79 four-year colleges and universities of the 294 institutions achieved “Great College to Work For” recognition for specific best practices and policies. Results are reported for small, medium, and large institutions.

CSUSB’s excellence was noted in the facilities, workspace and security category, which recognizes campuses where facilities adequately meet needs, the appearance of the campus is pleasing, and the institution takes steps to provide a secure environment. “This is a very satisfying affirmation of the environment that’s been created and maintained at Cal State San Bernardino, especially as I retire from the university this month,” said CSUSB President Albert Karnig. “The entire CSUSB campus community shares in this tribute, which is a salute to the extraordinary spirit of collegiality and cooperation among our faculty, staff and students. Despite multiple years of budget challenges, this has been an outstanding place to work and grow, and I’m delighted to have that recognition from The Chronicle of Higher Education.”

“The institutions that the Great Colleges program recognizes provide innovative educational experiences – while also offering their employees outstanding workplace experiences – and we are eager to help readers learn more about them,” said Liz McMillen, The Chronicle’s editor. The survey results are based on a two-part assessment process: an institutional audit that captured demographics and workplace policies from each institution, and a survey administered to faculty, administrators and professional support staff. The primary factor in deciding whether an institution received recognition was the employee feedback.

To administer the survey and analyze the results, The Chronicle worked with ModernThink LLC, a strategic human capital consulting firm that has conducted numerous “Best Places to Work” programs, surveying hundreds of thousands of employees nationwide. Great Colleges to Work For is one of the largest and most respected workplace-recognition programs in the country. For more information and to view all the results of the survey, visit The Chronicle’s Web site at http://chronicle.com/academicworkplace. Cal State San Bernardino is a preeminent center of intellectual and cultural activity in inland Southern California. Opened in 1965 and set at the foothills of the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains, the university serves more than 20,000 students each year and graduates about 4,000 students annually.

The “value added” by a CSUSB education ranks in the top 4 percent in the nation, according to the Collegiate Learning Assessment, a sequence of tests used by hundreds of colleges and universities nationwide that measure student learning in the freshman and then in the senior year. First-to-second year retention rates are third highest among all CSU campuses. The university offers more than 70 traditional baccalaureate and master’s degree programs, education credential and certificate programs, and a doctoral program. In recent years, CSUSB added its first doctorate (educational leadership), engineering program (computer science and engineering) and M.F.A. programs in creative writing and studio art/design. Every CSUSB academic program that is eligible has earned national accreditation. The university also is home to the 2011 California Professor of the Year (Stuart Sumida).

Cal State San Bernardino has seen records in enrollment, diversity of faculty and students, grant and contract funding, overhead funds, fundraising and international programs development. CSUSB ranks as the second safest among all 33 public universities in California.

Cheryl Brown joins fight for safe communities

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By Mark Feliece

FONTANA, CA-The Fontana Speedway paid host to one of the region’s most significant law enforcement gatherings, California Attorney General Kamala’s Inland Empire Public Safety Conference. San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Rod Hoops hosted and power packed event where police chiefs, prosecutors, public safety advocates, victims organizations, policemen, highway patrolmen and deputy sheriffs gather to discuss pressing issues of public safety and recognize the year’s past accomplishments. Cheryl Brown actively participated and celebrated the event on behalf of Assembly Member Wilmer Carter, who was unable to attend due to pressing Sacramento business.

Among those honored were the outstanding K9 Squad of the Fontana Police Department, Highway Patrolman Chris Solberg and San Bernardino County Supervising District Attorney Investigator Maurice Landrum.

The event was well attended and substantive. It began with a presentation of pressing challenges to crime fighting across Inland California. Among those were narcotics, domestic violence and gang warfare. Public officials from across the regionjoined the ceremonies, among them were Assembly Member Kevin Jefferies (theonly Republican in the State Legislature to support the landmark Homeowner’s Bill of Rights), Assemblyman Mike Morrell, Fontana Mayor Aquanetta Warren, Senators Gloria Negrete McLeod & Robert Dutton.

Time for Change Foundation hosts grand opening of affordable housing project

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San Bernardino - Time for Change Foundation held the grand opening of its first affordable housing project, known as the Phoenix Square, on July 25, 2012 at 657 North F Street in San Bernardino, CA. The event began at 8:30 a.m. with a few words from San Bernardino City Mayor Patrick Morris, who commended Time for Change Foundation's executive director and founder, Kim Carter for her work in making the project possible.

Carey Jenkins, from the San Bernardino Economic Development Agency was followed by Mayor Morris in giving a few words, commenting on the nature of his working relationship with Kim Carter, giving her praise for her efforts. Other speakers included Beverly Earl, Director of Catholic Charities, and Board President of Time For Change Foundation, and Dianne Sapp, a Time for Change Foundation graduate and first resident at the Phoenix square.

"Today is a great day in San Bernardino," said Kim Carter, "This is the model for affordable housing in the Inland Empire."

As the final speaker, Kim Carter explained that this was a $1.5 million dollar project that was funded in part by the Weingart Foundation, Affordable Housing Solutions, the City of San Bernardino's Economic Development Agency, and was furnished by Ashley's Furniture. Kim Carter additionally acknowledged the businesses that helped make the creation of the Phoenix Square possible, including WLC Artitects, Inc., Juan Dial (project manager), Solomon Ujamaa, Inc. (construction manager), and Absolute Contractors (general contractors). The event culminated with a ribbon cutting which was facilitated by the San Bernardino Chamber of Commerce.

"This is a great day for the City of San Bernardino," said John Kunkel, Director of Communications for Time for Change Foundation. "It was so exciting to see our government and business leaders join together to celebrate the grand opening of this project, especially during these challenging times for our City."

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BVN National News Wire