By Marko Nobles & Don Thomas
The Harlem Business, Cultural, Civic and Religious communities recently came together under the leadership of The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce (GHCC), to celebrate the End of the Year Holiday gala, (mix & mingle) reception held at Harlem’s historic Alhambra Ballroom.
The event celebrated the New York Police Department (NYPD), particularly the Commanding Officers of Harlem’s 24th, 26th, 28th and 32nd precincts, and the achievements of the city’s Police force with 2017 seeing NYC’s lowest crime rate in 60 years.
Hundreds of attendees came out to celebrate their accomplishments and hear from NYC Police Commissioner James O’Neill and First Deputy Commissioner Benjamin Tucker along with Manhattan elected officials NYS Assemblywoman Inez Dickens, NYS Assemblyman Al Taylor, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and Manhattan DA Cy Vance.
However the evening was about the 5 Honorees from the Police Department, all Commanding Officers or former Commanding Officers of Harlem Precincts who have built tremendous relationships with the community.
Deputy Inspector Chris McIntosh, Commanding Officer of the 28th Precinct, Deputy Inspector Florida Veras, Commanding Officer of the 26th Precinct, Captain Seth Lynch, Commanding Officer of the 24th Precinct, Deputy Inspector Michael Baker, Commanding Officer of the 32nd Precinct and Inspector Michael Davidson, former Commanding Officer of the 32nd Precinct were all honored with special awards courtesy of Metroplus and with Citations from Congressman Adriano Espaillat, NYS Senator Brian Benjamin, and NYC Councilman Bill Perkins in addition to Citations from the elected officials in attendance.
The evening’s program was part of an ongoing effort by the Public Safety Committees of The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce and HARLEM WEEK led by Chamber Board Members Willie Walker and
Dr. John Palmer along with HARLEM WEEK Board Members Jackie
Rowe Adams and Winston Majette.
The theme of the event was “Harlem: Home of Immigrants,” honoring New York’s international diversity. The festive designed programs distributed to invited guests stated, “The annual Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce’s End of the Year Gala serves as an opportunity for our members, friends and supporters to assist deserving children, youth and seniors in the Greater Harlem area.
“Each year, we collect warm winter clothing items for our beloved seniors and educational items and toys for our children and youth. We are thankful that you have joined with us in this special effort, and are truly appreciative of your donations!”
An amazing live musical performance was presented by Soulful Singer
Petula Beckles, (courtesy of the MTA Music Under NY Program). Harlem Swing Society, delivered a rousing foot-tappin’ Swing Dance Demonstration, and DJ Tall Guy (the official DJ for GHCC) provided Old-School classic R&B jams that kept the dance-floor crowded, as attendees not only danced the night-away, but also belted out the lyrics to memorable 60s, 70s, and 80s hits.
GHCC’s End of the Year Holiday Gala Team included Winston Majette, Patricia Ricketts, Voza Rivers, Michele Scott, Emmett Causey, Julie Henry, Linda Walton, Bob Tate, DiAnne Henderson, Courtney Bennett, Temple-jene Fleming, Geoffrey Eaton and Sam Hill.
The next activity will be a Salute to the NYPD Youth Explorers in February, 2018 celebrating Black History Month supporting our youth and encouraging them to interface most positively with the NYPD.
(Photos: Art Lawson)
Present and former Chamber NYPD Honorees, Elected Officials and VIP’s. (L-R) NYPD Honorees Deputy Inspector Chris McIntosh, 28th Pct., Inspector Michael Davidson, formerly of 32nd Pct., Deputy Inspector Florida Veras, 26th Pct., Deputy Inspector Michael Baker, 32nd Pct. and Captain Seth Lynch, 24th Pct.
(L-R) Manhattan DA Cy Vance, 1st Deputy Police Commissioner Benjamin Tucker, GHCC Board Member Willie Walker, NYC Police Commissioner James O’Neill and HARLEM WEEK Board Member Jackie Rowe Adams look on during Awards Ceremony