WEST PALM BEACH — The West Palm Beach Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. has tapped six community leaders for its Men of Excellence awards.
Radio personality, author and social activist Michael Baisden will give the keynote address when the sorority and the nonprofit Delta Heritage Foundation salute Anthony Burks Sr., Michael Brown, Daniel “Dan” Calloway, Dr. Joseph Lee, Cory Neering and Antoinne J. Wright.
The sorority says it selected them “for their outstanding service to enrich the lives of individuals in Palm Beach County.”
They will be honored at a dinner and awards ceremony Saturday, June 7, at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach. Orlando-based comedian Rod Z will serve as emcee.
The sorority said the men were chosen after a nomination process open to the public and will be honored in the areas of the arts, education, business, social action, humanitarianism and health and wellness.
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., founded in 1913 by 22 students at Howard University, is a public service organization of more than 200,000 predominantly black college-educated women in more than 900 chapters nationally, as well as in the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Bahamas and South Korea.
The West Palm Beach chapter, which started in 1948, has nearly 200 members.
Burks, who will be honored in the arts, is co-founder and owner of A.T.B. Fine Artists and Designers. He and his wife Trina “integrate the arts and education into culturally enriching programs for youth and adults.”
Brown, who is being saluted in the Business Executive category, is an attorney at Brown and Associates and former Riviera Beach mayor “whose work has helped bring about justice in the legal system for various individuals and groups in the community.”
Lee, who is getting the Education award, is assistant superintendent of the Palm Beach County School District “who has laid the groundwork for three new initiatives to help parents and students.”
The initiatives are a Parent Academy to provide free learning opportunities for parents and families; a Transition Academy which is a voluntary academic pilot program scheduled to open in the coming school year; and centers that will allow children from poor families to get evening meals in addition to having lunch while at school.
Neering, who will get the Health and Wellness award, is vice president of education at Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast “who has worked to address health disparities, especially within minority communities, through his professional work and his volunteer service on numerous boards and advisory committees” in the county, including serving as vice-chairman of the Healthy Start Coalition of Palm Beach County.
Calloway will receive the Humanitarian award. He is founder and athletics director of the nearly 50-year-old Riviera Beach Youth Creation Association, which raises funds for scholarships and finance travel expenses for teams competing in basketball, football, track and golf competitions. The Dan Calloway Recreation Complex in Riviera Beach is named for him.
Wright, who is the Social Action honoree, is founder and lead pastor of Shiloh Family Worship Center in West Palm Beach “whose congregation focuses many of its ministries on addressing social ills through such initiatives as the annual Summit for Success, which provides workshops on various topics including debt management and entrepreneurship.
The ministries also include Transitions, which helps people struggling with addictions, and a Social Concerns committee which deals with political affairs and education and health issues, including HIV/AIDS, cancer and diabetes.