Klein Honors Everyday Heroes At His Annual Black History Month Celebration Breakfast
NYC COBA President Norman Seabrook and Local Community Members Honored
BRONX, NY – In celebration of Black History Month, State Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/ Westchester) hosted a complimentary breakfast at Villa Barone Catering Hall Saturday morning. Norman I. Seabrook, President of the New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association delivered the keynote address. This year's celebration also honored everyday heroes from the education, business, civic and law enforcement communities. Honorees included: Monica Major, President of District 11 Community Education Council; Gregory Perry, President of the Westchester Square Merchants Association; Yolanda Robinson, Chief of Staff to the Mayor of Mount Vernon; Officer Jay Sturdivant of the NYPD’s 49th Precinct's Community Affairs Division; and Al J. Everett, Deputy Chief of the Mount Vernon Fire Department.
“It is easy to recognize the significant contributions of African-Americans to the rich cultural fabric of our communities. African Americans have played a significant role in shaping both our national history and our magnificent city - whether in the classroom, on the beat, running businesses or in their dedication to public service and safety. It has been my great privilege to work with these exemplary members of our community that I consider everyday heroes - committed to working tirelessly for the benefit of us all,” said Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/ Westchester).
"I am honored to join Senator Klein and distinguished leaders from our communities in the Bronx to celebrate not just Black History month, but Black future everyday moving forward. We're proud to support those individuals who work diligently every day and who make countless sacrifices to make a positive difference in the lives of all of us no matter where they come from," said Norman I. Seabrook, President of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association.
In addition, honorees and members of the community enjoyed a special live performance by the Trinity Baptist Church Choir.
Norman I. Seabrook is President of the New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association, which is the largest municipal jail union in the nation and second largest law enforcement union in New York City. President Seabrook was elected in 1995 by an overwhelming margin and achieved unprecedented accomplishments on behalf of Corrections Officers during his first term in office. He was re-elected in 1999, 2004 and 2008. President Seabrook has received many honors and prestigious appointments for his advocacy on behalf of men and women in civil service nationwide. He is a graduate of Empire State College and a life-long resident of the Bronx.
Monica Major, a life-long Bronx resident and education advocate, has served on the District 11 Community Education Council for four years, including two as President. She was the chairperson of the Student Achievement Committee and a member of the Zoning Committee. During her tenure, District 11 has successfully moved to a middle school choice district. Major serves on the DOE Panel for Educational Policy. She is a graduate of Baruch College and the proud mother of two children.
Gregory Perry is the President of the Westchester Square Merchants Association and former President of the Business Network International Platinum Chapter. Perry attended City College of New York where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Education with a concentration in Health. His academic teaching tenure has spanned over three decades, educating young men and women on the college level. Perry is the proud owner of Crown Trophy in the Bronx.
Yolanda Robinson is currently the Chief of Staff for the City of Mount Vernon. She is in charge of day-to-day operations of the city. During her tenure as Chief of Staff, Robinson has worked tirelessly to enhance efficiency, technology, safety and cost cutting measures at City Hall. Robinson has twenty years of public/ government relations and broadcasting experience. She served as Deputy Chief of Staff for NYS Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, publicist for Westchester County Board of Legislators and former District Attorney Jeanine Pirro. Yolanda was also the first African American Reporter/ Anchor for News 12 Westchester.
Officer Jay Sturdivant has served as a police officer with the NYPD for over a decade and is no stranger to the 49th Precinct, having worked in the Commands Housing developments since 2003. In March of 2010, Officer Sturdivant was appointed to Community Affairs Officer. Sturdivant is the first African American in the history of the 49th Precinct to hold this position. While serving in this capacity, he worked as a community liaison in the public housing developments which included Pelham Parkway Houses, Eastchester Gardens, Parkside Houses and 2440 Boston Road, a senior citizen development.
Al J. Everett is the Deputy Chief of the Mount Vernon Fire Department. Everett has been involved in politics from an early age when his grandmother had him working as a member of the Junior NAACP handing out literature for candidates in the 1960 Presidential Election. In 1980, he became a member of the Mount Vernon Fire Department. Everett recalled during his first month on the job being told by someone that they had never seen a black firefighter. It was at that moment Al decided to turn things around. He became a member of the Vulcan Society of Westchester, a group of black firefighters dedicated to increasing the number of all minorities in the fire service. He has held every position on the executive board of the Vulcans of Westchester, increasing minority representation in Mount Vernon’s Fire Department from five to seventy. He is a lifetime member of the NAACP and a former Vice President of the Mount Vernon School’s Board of Education.