Left to right: Chief Nathaniel Styles; Nivia Woodard; Dr. Art Woodard; Vanessa Woodard Byers
Photo by Donnalyn Anthony
It was a standing room only crowd at the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center on Sunday, December 26 at the Mary Williams Woodard Legacy Kwanzaa Celebration presented by the Miami-Dade Chapter of the Florida A&M University National Alumni Association and Community Builders Holistic Development Corporation. This is the twenty-first year the alumni chapter has presented this community event and the thirteenth year in partnership with Community Builders with Chief Nathaniel Styles serving as master of ceremonies.
The Elders for this year’s celebration were: Her Royal Grace Iya Orite Olasowo-Adefunmi; Queen Mother Boatenma (Constance Tallaha Ekon ); Queen Mother Delma J. Rodriguez; Rep. Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall, School Board Member District 2; Mr. William “DC” Clark; Mrs. Alvalia Ellis; Dr. George Ellis; Professor Joseph McNair; Ms. Karen Tynes and Ms. Altine X. Elders are designated as such not because of age but contributions to the uplift of the community.
There were wonderful performances by the children who are participants in the after school performing arts programs at the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center; spoken word by Shamele Jenkins; vocalist Jawana Lockett. The highlight of the evening was a spectacular dance by international performing artist Prince Emmanuel Abiodun Aderele, courtesy of Osun’s Village Miami.
In practicing the principles of Kwanzaa, the Miami-Dade Chapter has collected more than $500 to pay for students in the Arts program at the Center. Romania Wilson is president of the Miami-Dade Chapter.