CBMA and Partners Honor Detroit Youth With "Breakfast of Champions" Awards

On May 8th, 2019, Detroit educators, students, parents and community members were honored at the first-ever “Breakfast of Champions Awards”, which recognizes committed individuals and institutions that are working to expand access to quality education opportunities for African American male youth. Held at Tech Town Detroit, the awards were hosted by the Campaign for Black Male Achievement (CBMA)the Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color (COSEBOC) and Cities United in partnership with the Detroit Children’s Fund and the United Way for Southeastern Michigan

During the “Breakfast of Champions Awards,” young people spoke publicly about their academic hopes and aspirations, as well as the unique challenges and opportunities they face as Black male students. Each was presented with a special plaque modeled after the iconic Wheaties Box. 

“My experiences in Detroit as a public school student at Frederick Douglass Academy for Young Men, and in programs like Lyricist Society and the Future Project, have allowed me to connect with people who understand what I want to do and where I want to be in life. The connections I’ve made have encouraged me to keep going by providing me with tutoring, mentoring and a caring network of people,” said award recipient Jamare Winston.“My experiences have given me a strong group of peers, people who are on the same path as me. It’s given me a good group of teachers that push me. At one time in my life, I didn’t have anyone supporting me or anyone pushing me. But now I feel as if I have people who are supporting me tremendously and rooting for me.”

Launched as part of the Open Society Foundation in 2008, the Campaign for Black Male Achievement has worked with thousands of local and national leaders to strengthen and expand Black Male Achievement nationwide. Since spinning off from OSF in 2015, CBMA opened up a Detroit-based office in order to more directly engage municipal, school and community stakeholders striving to create culturally-competent and affirming learning environments for African American students in the city. 

“At CBMA, our mission is to build beloved communities where Black men and boys can thrive and reach their fullest potential in all aspects of life, especially when it comes to education,” said Shawn Dove, CEO of the Campaign for Black Male Achievement. “Given the stark barriers facing Black and Brown boys in our nation’s public education systems, CBMA, COSEBOC, Cities United, Detroit Children’s Fund and UWSM have joined in a unified effort to ensure our youth are best positioned to excel and soar. Together, we’re committed to doing all it takes to expand, amplify and support on-the-ground leaders, groups and organizations working to improve education and life outcomes for Detroit’s Black and Brown youth.”

The ”Breakfast of Champions Awards” ceremony was hosted in conjunction with COSEBOC’s 13th annual Gathering of Leaders conference held in Detroit from May 8-10, the theme for which was “Boys and Young Men of Color: Ready to Learn, Honored to Serve, Destined to Lead.” Said COSEBOC Executive Director Ron Walker, “I was beyond excited to partner with such great organizations as CBMA and Cities United to continue our work in the form of quality professional development provision that supports the social, emotional, cultural and academic development of boys and young men of color.  Detroit is just the beginning, and I can’t wait to see how these amazing partnerships will help improve the life outcomes of our young Black and Brown boys across the country.”

Added Cities United CEO Anthony Smith, “The Breakfast of Champions" gave us a glimpse into what's to come as we rollout Destiney Detroit.  It showed us what's possible when we make sure our children are safe, healthy and hopeful.”

Join us in congratulating our 2019 “Breakfast of Champions” Award recipients:

Karon Allen, Antonio Blackburn, Undra Mack II, Austin Mack, and Jamare Winston!