Late publisher among individuals who made a difference
Former publisher of the Portland Observer Chuck Washington, who passed away last December at just 60 years old, was one of 12 African Americans honored at the second annual “Salute to African American Leaders in Portland,” community awards ceremony.
Washington led the newspaper from 1996, showcasing the struggles and triumphs of culturally diverse families and communities in Portland.
Actress Robin Givens and KGW television anchor Brenda Braxton co-hosted the Feb. 25 event at the downtown restaurant Portland Prime. Students from the Self Enhancement, Inc. choir and jazz legend Mel Brown performed.
Each of the honorees achieved in a different area of life, from business, law and religion to education, sports and entertainment. The other awards went to:
Business: Howard White, the former basketball player who became NIKE vice president for the Jordan brand and created the “Believe to Achieve” youth program;
Music: Linda Hornbuckle, one of Portland’s most beloved blues and gospel singers;
Religion: Pastor T. Allen Bethel, senior pastor at Maranatha Church and community leader of police and justice issues at the Albina Ministerial Alliance;
Sports: Roy Pittman, longtime wrestling coach who has mentored countless young athletes;
Law: Judge Ancer Haggerty, first African American to become a federal judge in Oregon;
Child Development: Ron Herndon, chair of the National Head Start Association, as well as of Albina Head Start;
Community Activism: Joyce Harris, an educator, civil rights champion and director of the equity program at Education Northwest;
Business: Michael Montgomery, Vice President and Oregon Manager-Community Affairs & Development at U.S. Bank. Who has played a key role in improving access to capital for underserved groups;
Leadership: Paul and Geneva Knauls, key figures on Portland’s social scene since the 1960s as owners of the iconic Portland hair salon, Geneva’s Shear Perfection;
Education: Tony Hopson Sr., founder of Self Enhancement, Inc., which provides Portland’s most disadvantaged students with a lifeline to success.