Dearborn Students Will Unveil POP Sculptures on April 21

DEARBORN, Mich. – Fifteen high school students from across Dearborn will be recognized on Saturday, April 21, at 11 a.m., during the unveiling and dedication ceremony for one of two sculptures they designed during two years of collaboration on Dearborn’s first ever POP Design Team. The ceremony will be held at City Hall Park, 13615 Michigan Ave.

A “Meet the Design Team” reception in City Hall Annex will follow the dedication ceremony. The public is welcome to attend by making a reservation at 313.943.5478 by noon on April 19.

The POP Project, an acronym for Pockets of Perception – We Are One Community, focused on young people, encouraging multicultural understanding while cultivating their creativity and investment in the community through the creation of public art.

The 15-member student design team selected from Dearborn High School, Edsel Ford High School and Fordson High School, spent more than a year of their free time developing designs for the two POP sculptures. They continued to provide input as fabricator Ken Thompson of Flatlanders Sculpture Supply used his skills to bring their designs to life as aluminum sculptures that will be on permanent display along Michigan Avenue — one in Dearborn City Hall Park and the other in the West Dearborn Pocket Park.

“POP is the extremely appropriate, upbeat acronym for Pockets of Perception – We Are One Community,” said EmmaJean Woodyard, executive director of the Dearborn Community Fund which supported the project.

“The students on the POP design team literally ‘popped’ with creativity, enthusiasm and dedication to designing sculptures that reflect the mission of the project. The end result, which will be unveiled on April 21, is two impressive sculptures that complement each other, fitting together like two giant aluminum puzzle pieces that depict an image of multicultural understanding.”

Students on the POP Design Team are, from Dearborn High School: Malcolm H. Brown, Camille Charara, Eilionora E. Donelson, Shaker Hassan, Yutian Leng, John Richard Struman, Fatme Ali Taleb, and Anthony Vanarsdale. From Edsel Ford High School: Anthony Marquez, Carolyn Pawlicki, Natalie Randall, and Michelina A. Risbeck. From Fordson High School: Reem Meheidli, Hanna Omar, Shureza Conchita Rodriguez. Fordson High School teacher Mohamad Bazzi and Wendy Sample, a former Art Resource teacher for the Dearborn Public Schools, provided professional guidance for the team.

The POP Design Project was made possible with generous support from the following donors: Ford Motor Company Fund, Ford Foundation, Dearborn Community Fund, East Dearborn Downtown Development Authority, West Dearborn Downtown Development Authority, Kosch Family Foundation, Exchange Club of Dearborn, City of Dearborn, Dearborn Public Schools, Nichols Ski and Snowboard, Toni Patrick Leonard, Mickey and Judy Patrick, Mary Lou Zangerle, Versacom, M. Shoushanian, Wendy Sample, Dearborn Rotary Foundation, Nelson and Barb Stieper, Howe Peterson Funeral Home, AAUW Dearborn Branch, Robert W. Curtis, Hair Designs North – Kim Briffa; Johanna Seidel, Margaret Schaefer, The Woodyard Family, Dearborn Area Chamber of Commerce Farmers & Artisans Market, Anina and Ben Bachrach, Tom Beydoun, Steven Bernard Jewelers L.T.D., David and Ruth Sample, Jeff Stassen, Betsy Cushman, Maureen Ewasek, Eddie Fakhoury, Mayor and Mrs. John B. O’Reilly, and Neumann/Smith Architecture.

The Dearborn Community Fund, which supported the POP project, is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with the mission to support cultural and recreational programs in Dearborn.

For more information about the POP project and other programs sponsored by the DCF, or how to contribute to the Fund, call 313-943-5478.

2011 Mayor’s Arts Awards Ceremony – Feb. 8, 2012

DEARBORN, Michigan – The Dearborn Community Arts Council is pleased to announce the 24th Mayor’s Arts Awards honorees representing the 2011 calendar year. These esteemed individuals and organizations have been selected for their outstanding achievements in the Dearborn community.

Honorees for the 2011 Mayor’s Arts Awards are:

  • Frank Padzieski – The Mayor’s Award (in memoriam – Frank died at 103 recently)
  • Isabelle Renaud – Artist/Performer Award
  • Kurt Doelle – Arts Educator Award
  • Leslie Greeneisen – DCAC Bravo Award
  • Cynthia Frabutt – Volunteer Award
  • University of Michigan (Dearborn) – Patron Award
  • Artists Society of Dearborn – Organization Award

The Awards ceremony will take place Wednesday, February 8th in the Michael Guido Theatre at the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center. The ceremony will begin at 7:30 pm and is free to the public. A reception immediately following the ceremony will be in Studio A, next to the theatre and will also be open to the public.

The Mayor’s Arts Awards were created by Dearborn Community Arts Council (DCAC) and late Mayor, Michael Guido, to honor those members of our community who create, perform, educate and the support the fine and performing arts in the greater Dearborn area.

The Master of Ceremonies for this year’s prestigious event will be Dearborn’s multi-talented Brian Townsend. Among the groups slated to perform during the evening are the Prysm School of the Arts, the Dearborn High Thespians and a film montage of the DHS Film and Video program.

No reservations are required. Any inquires can be directed to the DCAC office; 313-943-3095.

Golf Outing Exceeds Foundation’s Goals

DEARBORN, Mich. – Supporters of the Dearborn Education Foundation held a successful golf outing on Sunday, Oct. 4, to raise funds FORE Classroom Technology and Equipment.

The Education Foundation is a licensed 501c3 non-profit organization that helps enhance the education that students receive from Dearborn Public Schools through grants to fund technology, equipment and innovative programs not funded by the school district’s budget. Since its inception the organization has funded more than $1,200,000 in grants.

Congratulations to the DHS golf team - Evan Bowser, Alex Haam, Matt Januszkowski, and John Marcon - as they take home the trophies. Mr. Inch (far left) and Mr. Fawaz (far right)

Congratulations to the DHS golf team - Evan Bowser, Alex Haam, Matt Januszkowski, and John Marcon - as they take home the trophies. Mr. Inch (far left) and Mr. Fawaz (far right) - photo courtesy of Raad Alawan (School Life)

All funds raised by the Foundation go to fund teacher grants that are submitted throughout the year. Recently the Foundation has seen an influx of requests for equipment and technology. That is why the Dearborn Education Foundation dedicated the proceeds from this year’s golf outing to go towards the over $250,000 in such grants.

This annual event, which once again took place at TPC Michigan on Oct. 4, had one of its best years in 2009: raising $30,000. The wonderful news is that this year the Dearborn Education Foundation was able to beat that number by over 25%. In today’s economic climate and diminishing trend of golf outings the Foundation Board of Directors should be proud of the work realized this year.

“Having the support that we did this year means that our community and corporate partners see the great value the Foundation offers our district. It was a success due in large part to their belief in supporting a strong school system and to the dedication of our Executive Director, Eddie Fakhoury,” said Foundation Chairman Brian Mosallam. He went on to say… “This year our focus was put on classroom technology & equipment due to the overwhelming needs of our teachers. This event has allowed us the financial resources needed to Make A Difference in meeting those needs.”

The event sponsors were AXA and McGraw Wentworth. Our lunch sponsors were Robert Ficano Hope Foundation and Comerica Bank. The golf cart sponsor was The Professional Group. Beverage cart sponsors were: Fairlane Town Center, RCP Associates, Mutual Electric, Fuels Transportation, Delta Dental, Renaissance Restoration, Michigan Fuels, X by 2 Architects, Master Craft Carpets, Trinity Transportation, The Epitec Group and Educators Preferred Corporation. Thank you to all our hole sponsors and to our individual golfers for a sold out course. Our sincere gratitude goes to the district and the Dearborn Federation of Teachers and ADSA for their continued support.

If You See Something, Say Something

Dearborn, Mi. – Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad and the Dearborn Police Department continue to contribute to the development of community-based policing initiatives promoted by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.  Secretary Napolitano has recently announced a series of initiatives to support state and local law enforcement and community groups across the country in identifying and mitigating crimes and threats to their communities.  Meanwhile, the CATO Institute held a special forum regarding citizen journalism and video recording of police activities to help keep police departments honest and improve the justice system.

A campaign called If You See Something, Say Something is encouraging police departments to strengthen relationships with, and between, community-oriented, service-oriented, religious and cultural groups to ensure a free flow of communication and cooperation.  When there is an environment of trust and understanding between the police and the community, it is more likely residents will feel comfortable coming forward with information that could reduce or prevent crimes of all types, including those that affect national security. Under the initiatives supported by Secretary Napolitano, it is also important that relationships be strengthened between all levels of law enforcement.

Janet Napolitano - official portrait

Janet Napolitano - official portrait

Early this year, the board of directors of the Southeastern Michigan Chief’s Association, which represents municipalities, including Detroit, in seven counties, unanimously selected Chief Haddad as its representative on the federal Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) committee. UASI is responsible for the appropriation of federal funding for Homeland Security projects in the State of Michigan. Chief Haddad’s actions on this committee and the Dearborn Police Department’s establishment of local advisory committees to facilitate communication between cultural, religious, service, and community-based organizations, has gained the attention of Secretary Napolitano.  Secretary Napolitano has made expanding the Department’s partnerships with state and local law enforcement a priority. Chief Haddad was recently appointed to serve on the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC), which provides advice and recommendations to Secretary Napolitano. Secretary Napolitano asked the HSAC to make recommendations on how Homeland Security can better support community-oriented policing efforts.

Chief Haddad was one of three chiefs of police across the nation to serve on this 32-person working group, which includes accomplished leaders from state and local governments, first responder communities, human rights and service organizations, and academia.

On Aug. 3, Chief Haddad, along with others from an advisory council work group, was present in Washington, D.C. when Secretary Napolitano launched the expansion of the “If You See Something, Say Something” effort during an international media event. This campaign uses a simple and effective program to raise public awareness of indicators of crime and other threats, including terrorism, and emphasizes the importance of reporting suspicious activity to the law enforcement authorities.

In line with the DHS’s initiatives, Chief Haddad reminds residents of the important role members of a community play in the safety and security of the country.  “It was average citizens that wrestled and controlled an individual who tried to ignite a bomb on a Detroit bound jet on Christmas day,” said Chief Haddad.  (Referring to the now famous Christmas day bomber on KLM / Northwest Flight 253. ) “And it was the observations and actions of a local merchant that led to the discovery and arrest of a suspect who attempted to ignite a car bomb in Times Square, in the heart of New York City.

Kurt Haskell (of Newport, Michigan) reported that a second person was involved in the flight 253 incident. Dutch authorities contradicted Haskell’s report. Kurt and Lori Haskell are both attorneys and persisted in reporting suspicious activities they witnessed regarding flight 253.  Controversy is still swirling around Haskell’s interpretation of events, however Kurt Haskell is hopeful the truth will be revealed.

The CATO Institute recently released a YouTube video about the use of video as it relates to law enforcement.

“We all have to deal with the opportunities and challenges presented by widespread video technology. The same is true for police. But law enforcement might prefer that cameras not be a part of their interactions with citizens. Does the First Amendment protect citizen journalism, or do police agents have a right to privacy while performing public duties? Citizens should have the right to record their interactions with police and police should be required to record their most intense interactions with citizens. The video features attorneys David Rittgers and Clark Neily and journalist Radley Balko.”

Today, the CATO Institute is holding a special online policy forum on the use of video and citizen journalism.

News organizations, law firms, and watchdog organizations are also equipped to help investigate suspicious activity.  Organizations such as the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF),  American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Thomas More Law Center (TMLC), and the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) provide legal help and protect against abuse of power.

Secretary Napolitano believes that local police departments, using community policing models, have been effective in the identification of issues related to all types of crimes, including potential acts of terror, which can affect the quality of life in communities.  “Homeland security begins with hometown security, and our efforts to confront threats in our communities are most effective when they are led by local law enforcement and involve strong collaboration with the communities and citizens they serve,” said Secretary Napolitano.

“A local police department is the instrument to action and all departments are equipped to investigate behaviors, situations, and objects that appear suspicious,” said Chief Haddad.  In Dearborn, citizens are encouraged to call “911” on any emergency or in-progress situation. They are also encouraged to call the Dearborn Police non-emergency number of (313) 943-2241 on any suspicious non-emergency situation. In addition, callers to the department’s tip line at (313) 943-3030 can remain anonymous, should they so choose.  The Dearborn Police Department provides critical information to residents in several ways, including through alerts from

Citizens can also report any suspicious activities to government watchdog organizations, and receive whistle-blower protection.

Note: Portions of this article were derived from City of Dearborn, CATO Institute, and DHS  news releases.