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Thursday July 31st 2014

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Winners & Losers 9.09

Winners
BASKERVILLE-DONOVAN, INC.
The Pensacola-based engineering firm was recently awarded the 2010 NAACP Pensacola Industry Award. BDI was selected for this award due to its lengthy partnership with the NAACP Pensacola branch in supporting youth and education through the annual student engineering scholarship. In the words of Mr. McCorvey, “Baskerville-Donovan has committed itself to our mission of ‘One Nation, One Dream,’ and deserves to be recognized as an exemplary community citizen and corporation of excellence.”

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS The Pensacola Bay Area chapter celebrated at the end of August 90 years of American women voting. Ninety decades ago, American women gained the most basic element of citizenship: a voice at the ballot box. That victory extends to the heart of how our American democracy protects each individual citizen, as well as our responsibility as citizens to protect it in turn. Today, women hold positions on all of the area’s boards and councils.

AFRICAN-AMERICAN HERITAGE SOCIETY This non-profit and the Pensacola Bay Area Chamber of Commerce recently received a $1,250 marketing grant from VISIT FLORIDA to promote Pensacola’s African-American heritage. Visit Pensacola and the African-American Heritage Society will produce 10,000 brochures to help raise awareness among visitors of the area’s rich African-American culture. Included in the brochure will be a history of Pensacola and an explanation of the role African Americans played in the city’s founding, a tribute to notable African Americans in the community and other facts about the area’s 450-year history.

Losers
HUGH WIGGINS
Along with his wife, Pamela Long Wiggins and buddy Eddie Denson, the offshore worker was indicted in Mississippi on charges of trying to hide the guns allegedly used in the murders of Byrd and Melanie Billings. The trio has been charged for being accessories-after-the-fact. Hugh Wiggins had an immunity agreement that prevented State Attorney Bill Eddins from prosecuting him, but it didn’t cover Mississippi.

PATRICK GONZALEZ The alleged killer of Byrd and Melanie Billings had a tough week, too. Judge Nick Geeker ruled that prosecutors can introduce evidence of a scuttled attempt to rob the Billings’ Beulah home several days before the couple was murdered.

SCANNERS It was the battle that no one cared about but WEAR TV 3, the Pensacola News Journal and News Radio 1620 AM. The local media “giants” tried to stop the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office from buying a new encrypted radio system that moved the agency into the 21st century. Their pleas fell on deaf ears at the Escambia County Commission meeting after Sheriff David Morgan explained how drug dealers were using scanners to track deputies and derail drug busts.

AFRICAN-AMERICAN VOTERS While their elected officials were able to turn out a moderate vote for Mayor Mike Wiggins on Aug. 24, there is nothing in the platforms of either mayoral candidate that promises to make the lives of those in Districts 5, 6 and 7 any better. No disparity study, no funding for the dormant Westside plan and no help with the increasing gang presence.