World renowned choreographer Bill T. Jones, trailblazing opioid specialist Dr. Melissa Freeman and philanthropist Richard “Big Daddy” Salgado to receive award named after a Harlem trailblazer
HARLEM, NY — Thursday, September 13, 2018 — The Emma L. Bowen Community Service Center, one of Harlem’s leading community-based organizations dedicated to providing supportive behavioral health services to clients throughout the five boroughs, today announced the recipients of the 2018 Humanitarian Awards and Community Leadership Award. The recipients will be honored at a special reception, to be held on Tuesday, October 23, 2018. PepsiCo and la Fleur de Harlem will serve as sponsors of the event.
The Emma L. Bowen Humanitarian Award recognizes individuals and organizations who provide exceptional leadership and unfailing dedication to community-based initiatives to those in need. Their efforts on the behalf of others epitomize the legacy of the late Emma L. Bowen. Previous honorees include former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, Congressman Charles Rangel, best-selling author Terrie Williams, former Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields, and the late Percy E. Sutton.
2018 Humanitarian Awardees
Bill T. Jones, a multi-talented artist, choreographer, dancer, theater director and writer, is the Artistic Director/Co-Founder/Choreographer of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, an organization that strives to create a robust framework in support of the nation’s dance and movement-based artists through new approaches to producing, presenting, and educating. A two-time Tony Award winner for Best Choreography (Spring Awakening and Fela!), Mr. Jones received a Kennedy Center Honor in 2010 and has been the recipient of numerous honors including the Human Rights Campaign’s Visibility Award, the MacArthur “Genius” Award and a National Medal of Arts.
Dr. Melissa Freeman was born and raised in the Williamsbridge section of the Bronx. In 1964, Dr. Freeman joined the staff of Mount Sinai-Beth Israel Clinic, in New York, to provide treatment for narcotic addicted individuals. She is one of the first doctors, and a pioneer in the treatment of Opioid addicted women. In addition, for over 30 years, Dr. Freeman has served the Harlem Community with a successful private practice in Internal Medicine. Dr. Freeman celebrated her 92nd birthday earlier this year and continues to see patients in her Harlem office on a regular basis.
Richard Salgado, a former athlete, well-known sports personality, and owner of Coastal Advisors, which provides insurance policies as well as financial planning services to influential professional athletes from Major League Baseball, National Football League and National Hockey League, spends a great deal of his time helping children. He is the co-creator of a non-contact football camp on Long Island that teaches the fundamentals of football to young players and has hosted several celebrity golf outings in support of the St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
Mr. Jones, Dr. Freeman and Mr. Salgado will be the first recipients of the Emma L. Bowen Humanitarian Medal, a custom designed antique medal, that will feature a raised image of Mrs. Bowen on front and names of the recipients engraved on the back.
2018 Community Leadership Recipient
Mark Levine represents the 7th Council District in Upper Manhattan. The Councilmember is a lifelong advocate for addressing inequality in New York City who fought successfully to get legal representation for low-income tenants facing eviction in housing court by passing landmark “Right to Counsel” legislation, the first of its kind in the nation. Councilmember Levine will be the first recipient of the Community Leadership Award.
About Emma L. Bowen and the Bowen Center
Emma L. Bowen was a community activist, fighter for justice, founder, and president of Black Citizens for a Fair Media (BCFM), and co-founder of the Foundation for Minority Interest in Media, now known as the Emma L. Bowen Foundation. As a mental health professional and community activist Mrs. Bowen co-established a non-profit agency in 1969, with the late William F. Hatcher, that would be the catalyst for the Upper Manhattan Mental Health Center, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit community-based organization licensed by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, New York State Office of Mental Health, New York State Alcoholism & Substance Abuse Services, and New York State Department of Education.
When the Center opened its doors in 1986, Mrs. Bowen’s vision of a community-based mental health facility committed to recognizing the dignity and humanity of those who struggle with mental health issues, was realized. Today the Center serves over 15,000 clients annually, providing a broad range of supportive and behavioral health services to individuals and families throughout the City of New York. With a staff of highly trained, culturally experienced psychologists, social workers, nurses, chemical dependency counselors, case managers, vocational rehabilitation counselors and early childhood teachers, the Center services include a therapeutic preschool for children with behavioral and developmental issues, programs for adults and seniors with mental health and substance abuse issues, chemical abuse outpatient programs and mental health-based services for children, adolescents and their families, as well as a twenty-bed residential chemical abuse recovery facility and a food pantry program. Upon Mrs. Bowen's passing in 1996, the Center was renamed the Emma L. Bowen Community Service Center in her honor.
The 2018 Humanitarian Awards reception will be held at the Faculty House at Columbia University, and will feature special performances by the Willie Mack Jazz Band and The Bill Saxton Harlem Stars. For additional information about the award recipients, details about the event, or to purchase tickets or become a sponsor, please visit 2018 Emma L. Bowen Humanitarian Awards