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Dwayne Wade featured speaker at FMU scholarship gala

Miami Heat Dwayne Wade and FAMU Interim President Dr. Rosalyn Clark Artis

Miami Heat Dwayne Wade and FAMU Interim President Dr. Rosalyn Clark Artis

Dwayne Wade featured speaker at FMU scholarship gala

By Derek Joy

He appeared at a media session before being the featured speaker at the Florida Memorial University’s 12th Annual Scholarship Gala.

Miami Heat star and three times NBA Champion Dwayne Wade, representing his “Wade’s World Foundation, captured the attention of the media before hand, as he did as the featured speaker.

“Obviously, it means a lot to me to be here,” said Wade, answering a reporter’s question about the importance of his appearance. “Any time you get kids interested in education, it’s exciting to me.  We (Wade’s World Foundation) support that.  We’ll come in and hopefully help the cause.”

The cause is raising money for the FMU scholarship fund at its 12th Annual Scholarship Gala held at the Bonaventure Resort and Spa in Weston.

“Dwayne Wade’s appearance here signals a commitment,” said FMU Interim President Dr. Rosalyn Clark Artis, whose stylish fashion and good looks was matched by the nattily at-tired Wade and his superstar persona.  “You’re going to enjoy tonight.”

There was much to be enjoyed on a program that was emceed by Calvin Hughes, the award winning co-anchor of the WPLG Local 10 News, and hosted by Florida State Senator Oscar Braynon II.

In addition to Wade as the featured speaker, there were 2013 honorees.

Miami Dade County District 1 Commissioner Barbara Jordan received the Community Leadership Award; the Carrie P. Meek Philanthropist Award went to Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust Trustee George Weaver; Dr. Cynthia Clarke, president of the Dade County Links received the Volunteer Award.

Other recipients included: Tampa Alumni Chapter President Evelyn Davenport-Bethune, class of 1970, the Alumni of the Year Award; Warren Thompson, president and CEO of Thompson Hospitality, Inc., received the Corporate Partner Award, and Trustee of the Year Award for the Rev. Wayne B. Lomax, pastor of The Fountain of Life Church and FMU Board of Trustees.

In the background loomed an impressive array of artwork donated for the auction held to boost funds raised for the scholarship fund.

“It’s always exciting to see people come together for a good cause, especially education,” said Vera Galloway, SGA president at FMU, a senior communications major from St. Kitts. “Education empowers kids. And it is good Mr. Wade is here.”

Miami Gardens Councilman Dr. Erhabor Ighadaro is a glowing example of that empowerment.  Ighadaro is alum and currently a criminal justice professor at FMU.

“I came here from West Africa – Nigeria – on a basketball scholarship.  Programs like this make it possible for the success of people like me,” said Ighadaro,

Supporting the FMU also comes easy for Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert III, who attended the gala.

“FMU is in my city.  It’s the only HCBU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) in Miami Gardens.  So, I support them and their efforts,” Gilbert said.

Support is precisely why Wade and his Wade’s World Foundation accepted the invitation to participate in the scholarship gala.

“I’m still growing myself,” Wade told a reporter. “As a man in this world you’re looked at as leaders. But I try not to put too much pressure on myself. You’re going to make mistakes. Life is about choices.  You learn from your mistakes.

“I love the sport of basketball.  I love winning. Basketball has done amazing things for my family.  But I won’t play basketball forever. There’ll come a time when I won’t even pick a basketball.  Kids are forever.

“Winning is great. You celebrate and move on.  Being a parent matters more. The love you give your kids is something that lasts forever,” said Wade, who will journey to the Bahamas with the Miami Heat for the first four days of training camp beginning Oct.1.

 

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    Carma Lynn Henry Westside Gazette Newspaper 545 N.W. 7th Terrace, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33311 Office: (954) 525-1489 Fax: (954) 525-1861

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