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Slideshow of Greenwood Leadership Academy 5K and Fun Run for STEM and Arts education — Saturday, November 2, 2019
Published 11/02/2019 | Reading Time 2 min 24 sec
By Nehemiah D. Frank, founder and editor
TULSA, Okla. — Greenwood Leadership Academy (GLA), a Tulsa Public Schools (TPS) partnership school serving TPS students, and the Met Cares Foundation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to building exceptional schools, strong economic development and robust community engagement in North Tulsa, held their first GLA 5K and Fun Run on the morning of Saturday, November 2, 2019, that took walkers and runners through the beautiful, rolling hills in the Gilcrease neighborhood.
The community event promoted healthy living with fundraising proceeds going to GLA’s new hands-on after-school Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) program.
Greenwood Leadership Academy Principal Michael Carter and Tulsa Public Schools District to Education Board Member Jania Wester on November 2, 2019, at the GLA 5K and Fun Run to raise funds for GLA’s afterschool STEM and Arts program.
GLA principal Michael Carter said: “We’re hosting this event because we need funding for our after-school STEM and Arts program. Our students need access, and this event is an effort to make that happen. We need community support. The vision is to give our students access to STEM and Arts at an earlier age.”
Former Oklahoma senator, Jabar Shumate, now interim director of the MetCares Foundation, said: “I’m here because I want to see more opportunities in north Tulsa for our residence to get into healthier activities and healthy living. I’m excited about Greenwood Leadership Academy being the host. I definitely think that elevating the conversation on education and health initiatives in north Tulsa is an excellent idea,” and added, “I want to see more of our kids get an opportunity to grow in STEAM education.”
Raynell Lynn of the MetCares Foundation and former Jenks High School student and junior Olympic Runner Hudson Mazzei.
Hudson Mazzei, 18, a recent Jenks high school graduate, was the first to finish the GLA 5K and did so under 16-minutes in mid-40-degree weather. Mazzei has no direct connection to GLA but wanted to run a 5K and support north Tulsa kids.
Gloryanna Griffith with her father
Gloryanna Griffith, 13, finished in second with a time of 22-minutes with her dad cheering her on at the finish line. “I wanted to run because I’m a kid that supports other kids,” she said.
Nick Doctor, chief of community development and policy for the City of Tulsa, finished shortly after Griffith: “Greenwood Leadership Academy is exactly the type of community organization we need in Tulsa. The way in which they galvanize the community they seek to serve is incredible. I am here to support them in any way I can — both personally and professionally.”
Tulsa Public Schools’ District 2 School Board Member, Jania Wester, and her husband Kirk Wester also came to support the TPS community school’s event as 5K runners. “I am here to support after school programming,” Mrs. Wester expressed.
Kathryn Foster, a runner, said: “I’m running the race to support GLA because I belong to Metropolitan Baptist Church, and we believe in everything that the school is doing.”
The event included community partners in support of GLA and MetCares’ community-based work.
Bruce Robbins, Jr. and Katie Dilks with Due North
Karen Pennington, Executive Director of Tulsa Community Work Advance, stated: “We have a new initiative called Due North. Today is our public entrance. We wanted to support the community, school, and kiddos. We are here to bring job readiness and career creation into the north Tulsa community to prepare residences for those careers that will be coming through the Peoria, Mohawk business park, and other north Tulsa developments. We are going to take all the job services and skills and career readiness on sight from the north Tulsa community and get some economic mobility, and we’re excited to be a part of the change.”
The Due North portion of the race featured an encouraging turn-around at the half-way point with water, cheers and high fives for walkers and runners.
Additional community partners included the Terence Crutcher Foundation, Fulton Street (bookstore and cafe), Silhouette Sneakers & Art, Capital Homes, Runners World Tulsa, Reading Partners, and Press Cafe x Yoga to sponsor and promote this event.
Nehemiah D. Frank is the founder and executive editor of The Black Wall Street Times, an educator, TEDx alum, blogger for EdPost, Tulsa World community advisory board member, and Tulsa Press Club board member.