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Library to Launch Real Men Talk Panel Mon. at 5 Points West Branch

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The Birmingham Public Library is launching its Real MENtors Talk program with a panel discussion focused on issues in the black community and how real men can step up and be a part of the solution.

BPL Real MENtors Talk Presents “Real Men, Real Issues” will take place on Monday, September 16 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Five Points West Regional Library, across from the Birmingham Crossplex.

The panel discussion will feature a 31-year-old pastor and five representatives of the 100 Black Men of Metro Birmingham, an organization that is partnering with the Birmingham Public Library in this after school mentoring program.

The panel discussion will be led by Roy L. Williams, public relations director of the Birmingham Public Library and a former 25-year newspaper journalist. Williams came up with the idea of Real MENtors Talk, a new male mentoring program launching this fall and targeting youth who attend afterschool programs at BPL locations across the city.

“I am so excited to have black professional men who are willing to invest in the lives of the next generation to help us come up with answers to real problems in our communities,” Williams said.

The “Real Men, Real Issues” panel discussion will discuss problems such as how to reduce black-on-black crime and the lack of fathers in the home that causes so many black families to be led by single mothers.

The panelists will be:

— Overseer Shaemun Webster, senior pastor of the Tower of Prayer Church in Leeds

— Jefferson County Judge Charles “Chuck” Price II

— Christopher Anderson, a retired Birmingham police detective who is now a special investigator for the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office. Anderson stars on a reality television show. In Investigation Discovery’s series “Reasonable Doubt”; Anderson and Los Angeles attorney Melisa Lewkowidz partner to reopen closed cases.

— Eddie Bradford, owner of Bradford Mentoring; Consulting and mentoring chairman of the 100 Black Men of Metro Birmingham.

— Jay Johnson, president of College Prep U. in Trussville

— Renaldo Parker, a retired Army lieutenant colonel.

For more information about Real MENtors talk and the panel discussion, contact Roy L. Williams, Birmingham Public Library P.R. Department (205) 226-3746, email rlwilliams@bham.lib.al.us.

Other Real MENtors Talk programs coming up this fall include:

Real MENtors Talk “Real Men, Real Issues,” Springville Road Regional Branch Library, Monday, Sept. 30, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Panelists will include Richard Cade, founder of The Man Project in Birmingham, Birmingham City Councilman Clinton Woods (District 1), and his opponent, for District 1 Birmingham School Board member Sherman Collins.

Real MENtors Talk: Fatherhood-Thursday, Oct. 3, 10–11 a.m. at West End Branch Library. This monthly program will discuss the importance of a father’s presence in a child’s life. For more information, call West End Library at 205-226-4089.

About the Birmingham Public Library (BPL)

For additional information about the programs and services of the Birmingham Public Library, visit our website at www.bplonline.org and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BPL.

The mission of Birmingham Public Library is to provide the highest quality library experience to our community for life-long learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment. This system—with 19 locations and serving the community for over 130 years—is one of the largest library systems in the Southeast.