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By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 22 February 2006

An organization and three individuals will be celebrated by the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority for their outstanding contributions to the education of African American youth.

They will be honored during the second annual Trajectory to Excellence, a scholarship fund-raising luncheon sponsored by the sorority on Saturday, Feb. 25, at the Doubletree Hotel, 18740 Pacific Hwy. S.

The honorees are the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle; Minty L. and Robert L. Jeffrey Jr., publishers of "Colors NW" magazine and longtime mentors of local youth; and Bunny Wilburn, a founding member of the Black Child Development Institute and affiliate of the National Black Child Development Institute.

The Urban League, serving Seattle for 75 years in housing and employment, organized an education committee in 1956. The committee assesses physical conditions of public schools and racial imbalances in schools.

In 1964, the league started a "Triad Plan" that resulted in fostering desegregation in local middle schools.

Among the projects are a Children's University, an after-school program for elementary-age children; Summer Children's University, an arts program; Project Mister, an intervention program for youth at risk of dropping out of high school; and the Microsoft Youth IT Challenge, a 10-week program to encourage minority youth in the area of information technology.

The Jeffreys in 2001 launched "Colors NW," a magazine focusing on issues and lifestyles of people of color; they employ and train college journalism students to work on the magazine.

In addition to the magazine, Robert Jeffrey has mentored numerous young people through his service as president of Omega Psi Phi and his involvement with Project Mister of the Breakfast Group. Minty Jeffrey has been a mentor through the Atlantic Street Center and El Centro de la Raza. "Colors NW" Inc. also provides development and training in cultural competence to corporations, schools and organizations.

As one of the founders of Black Child Development Institute, Bunny Wilburn has advocated for Black children in local education programming for more than 35 years. Wilburn established a learning lab for new teachers long before such labs were considered a best practice. She also represented the Pacific Northwest on the national board of the Black Child Development Institute for 15 years.

In addition, Wilburn has served as vice-president for education and family life education of Catholic Community Services of King County and was founding director, teacher and later supervisor of the Martin Luther King Day Home Center.

Luncheon tickets are $50; call 206-333-5146 for reservations. Proceeds go to the Bertha Pitts Campbell College Scholarships, which are awarded to local high school students. This year, a scholarship will also go to a student from the Gulf Coast region who was displaced by Hurricane Katrina. These scholarships will be presented at the luncheon.
Delta Sigma Theta is an international sorority of primarily African American college-educated women dedicated to public service. Sandra Y. Jeffcoat is president.

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