2019 HBCU College Fair winners awarded laptops

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THIS PAST SATURDAY, the Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund, Inc. (CFC) and BMO Harris presented laptops, donated by Walmart, to student raffle winners from the 2019 HBCU College Fair Empowerment Summit. Over 2,000 area students attended this year’s college fair, held at Soldier Field and $500K was awarded in scholarships. Photographed above with two of the student winners from l-r are: (First Row) Alderman Michelle Harris, 8th Ward; Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle; CFC Co-Founder Larry Huggins; Jahjah Williams, student winner; CFC Co-Founder Everett Rand; Joshua Ogunsanya, student winner; and David Ogunsanya. Second Row, l-r: Eric Johnson; Alderman Anthony Beale, 9th Ward; IL State Representative Nick Smith (34th District); Gloria Batey, M.A., All BrainEd LLC.; Alderman Carrie Austin, 34th Ward; Marva Hall, PhD., City Colleges of Chicago; Peter Ogunsanya; and CFC Executive Director Donnah Hodges. (Photo by John Wheeler)

By Joseph Phillips

The Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund, Inc., in collaboration with BMO Harris Bank presented three laptops to local area students last Saturday afternoon at a press conference held at Walmart, 10900 S. Doty Road, on the South Side.

The students were elected via raffle at the 2019 HBCU College Fair Empowerment Summit event held at Soldier Field in September. The three students were Joshua Ogunsanya, Jahjah Williams and Anthony Wright.

“We are trying to bring the community together,” said Larry Huggins, co-founder of the Chicago Football Classic Scholarship Fund, Inc. “We will look to bring together all Chicago aldermen during our Christmas season celebration for one of the largest toy giveaways in the city.”

During the interview, Huggins explained his plan to bring together all 50 of Chicago’s aldermen to help celebrate his “23rd Annual Christmas in the Wards holiday gift/toy giveaway extravaganza” this season.

Huggins started the organization over two decades ago as “Christmas in Englewood” to help spread holiday joy and happiness with those who are less fortunate.

Huggins realized many disadvantaged Englewood residents couldn’t travel to other Chicago neighborhoods where holiday giveaways were held. Hence, Christmas In the Wards (CITW) was born.

The philosophy behind the nonprofit CITW organization, operated in partnership with successful brother entrepreneurs Everett Rand (Midway Wholesalers) and Tim Rand (MAC-One) and a board of directors, was simple:

“Most of us fortunately experience Christmas holidays as a magical time of decorated trees, lights, presents, food, family and friends to brighten the spirit of the season!” said Huggins, in a past interview with the Crusader. “Regrettably, that’s not always the case for many economically struggling families today, especially on Chicago’s West and South sides. That’s why Christmas in the Wards exists — our mission is to uplift needy local families during this season of giving.”

This year’s 23rd Annual Christmas in the Wards (CITW) holiday gift/toy giveaway extravaganza will be held at the Chicago Hilton Hotel downtown. Dates and times to be announced at a future date.

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