New York State Communist Party
New York State Communist Party
Bassett, Kryzak, Gale fundraiser
On May 7 1994, the New York State Communist Party held a fundraising banquet to honor three Party activists Ted Bassett, Rose Kryzak and Mary Gale. Grace Bassett accepted the award on behalf of Ted Bassett. Almost 3,000 was contributed in honor of the three.
New York District chair John Bachtell MCd the event. Communist Party USA leader Gus Hall was keynote speaker while Maria Ramos introduced the honorees. Dorothy Burnham reminisced about her work with Bassett. Etta Glaser spoke of helping to organize the 1963 March on Washington with Ted Bassett.
Jarvis Tyner said that when Ted Bassett was educational director of the party's Harlem branch, they were recruiting 1,000 members a week.
Kryzak became a Party organizer in 1940. Esther Brall, who worked with Kryzak for years, recalled her work as chair of the New York Committee to Aid the Families of Smith Act Victims.
New York City councilman Tom Duane was there. He told the People's Weekly World - "I came to honor Mary Gale, to honor her activity in support of progressive causes. She's one of my role models. I'm proud to have earned her vote."
Richard Gottfried, chairman of the New York Assembly Committee on Health sent a letter congratulating Gale and Kryzak on their "many years of tireless effort" they had given to "the fight for peace and social justice...Your energy, spirit, commitment and cheer" had spurred "countless others in many struggles and helped win important victories."
State Senator Franz. S. Leichter sent a letter congratulating Gale on her 94th birthday and regretted not attending.
Paul Robeson celebration
- Judith LeBlanc, Communist Party USA
- Gus Hall, chairman of the Communist Party USA, talked of meeting Robeson annually to collect his dues and renew his party membership
- John Bachtell, chairman of the New York district of the Communist Party USA
- Amiri Baraka, who read poetry
- Yasmin Adeigbola, who sang "Amazing Grace"
Tributes came from ;
- Tom Duane authored a City Council proclamation praising Robeson's lifelong fight for a "world at peace, free of racism, inequality and for unity"...and his fight against the erosion of domestic freedom of expression and fanatical anti-communism....Paul Robeson has become a model and an inspiration to all of us..."
- Richard Gottfried, presented a resolution from the New York State assembly honoring Robeson. Democrat David Paterson introduced the resolution in the State Senate. Republican John Marchi and Democrats Richard Gottfried and Roger Green, introduced it in the State Assembly.<ref.PWW Hundreds honor Robeson's communist legacy, june 6, 1998, page 3</ref>
Better World Awards
The New York Communist Party hosts an annual Better World Awards banquet.
Past honorees and speakers include : former NY State Assemblyman Frank Barbaro; Marvel Cooke; Domino sugar workers, ILA Local 1814; Ernesto Jofre (UNITE); Julie Margolin; NY State Senator Bill Perkins; Chris Silvera, Teamsters local 808; NY City Councilwoman Letitia James; Rev. Lucius Walker, Pastors for Peace; former US Congressman Major Owens; Betty Smith, International Publishers; NY City Councilman Robert Jackson; Adolfo Fana; Make the Road by Walking; TWU Local 100, NY Taxi Workers Alliance; Brooklyn for Peace; Estelle Katz etc. 
2000 Better World Awards luncheon
On October 22, 2000 the Peoples Weekly World held its 4th annual celebration luncheon in New York, at the Henry Winston Auditorium.
- Ernesto Jofre, president of UNITE Local 169
- International Longshoreman's Association, Local 1814
- Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence
Speakers included City Councilmembers Bill Perkins and Christine Quinn, Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, State Senator Tom Duane, Larry Moskowitz of the Communist Party USA and Working Families Party and Elena Mora for the Communist Party.
2006 Better World Awards banquet
- In New York City, Rep. Major Owens will be honored at the annual “Better World Awards” for his years of progressive struggle in Congress. Also being honored is Betty Smith, president of International Publishers and longtime fighter for peace and democracy. Elena Mora, chair of the N.Y. State Communist Party, will discuss the recent election results.
2007 Better World Awards banquet
The New York Friends of the Peoples Weekly World newspaper held its annual Better World Awards Gala May 6 2007, to celebrate the May Day and Cinco De Mayo holidays and to benefit the paper.
2007 Better World Award honorees include New York City Councilman Robert Jackson, and Latino community activist Adolfo Fana. Past honorees and speakers have included former State Assemblyman Frank Barbaro, NY State Senator Bill Perkins, Rev. Lucius Walker of Pastors for Peace, Congressman Major Owens, and many local union and community activists from throughout the state.
2011 Better World Awards banquet
Local People's World readers and contributors held their annual Better World Awards banquet May 29, focusing on the fight for quality public education.
The assault by the Bloomberg administration on teachers, coupled with state budget cuts pushed by Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, prompted the organizing committee to pick the education theme, as well as the choice to honor educators for, in the words of one committee member, "all the good work they do, work that is always challenging and at times may seem daunting."
Pioneering civil rights activist Dorothy Burnham was warmly received with a standing ovation after she received her award. At 96 years old, the program was not long enough to mention all her life's work, which began in the 1930s with the American Student Union and continued in the 1940s with the Southern Negro Youth Congress in Birmingham. She has long been active in women's and peace organizations, and is currently she is president of the Louis E. Burnham Awards Fund.
State Senator Velmanette Montgomery, another of the honorees, stayed to talk with Dorothy and took several pictures for their local paper. State Sen. Bill Perkins appeared to show his appreciation and respect for his colleague, Sen. Montgomery, who fought a hedge fund-backed opponent over the issue of public education in the recent election.
City Council Member Letitia James sent a tribute to the People's World, printed in the program's ad book. She praised the work of the World in making New York - and beyond - a better place in many ways. And she praised her "mentor" Velmanette Montgomery.
Elena Mora, a union grievance representative, hosted the event. At one point, Mora asked all those who are present or former educators to stand and be recognized. To everyone's surprise, a third of the audience stood and received a loud ovation. The audience was a multiracial full house of all ages.
Henry Winston's centenary celebration
A standing room only crowd gathered in Winston Unity Center, New York, on the occasion of Henry Winston's centenary celebration. Winston, who was born in 1912, was the national chairman of the Communist Party for two decades until his death in 1986.
The multi-media celebration of this great African American leader included speeches, music, slideshow and greetings from former coworkers and friends - including one from New York Congressman Charles Rangel. It was streamed live to a national audience and hosted by Judith LeBlanc, the national field director of Peace Action.
Noted scholar and political activist Angela Davis brought the multi-racial audience to its feet in her moving tribute to Winston
Davis said, " [Winston] was a constant inspiration to me, especially when it came to garnering the courage to stand up to attacks I had never imagined would be directed individually at me."
Winston was also a political prisoner, unjustly imprisoned in the McCarthy era where he lost his fight due to poor medical care while there.
Davis went on to speak of Winston's "enduring opposition to corporate capitalism, militarism and racism."
While the Obama administration, she noted, wasn't immune from criticism, the election of the president had created a political climate for labor and social justice activism since 2008.
In another poignant tribute, Charlene Mitchell, the national chair of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism and close co-worker of Winston's, pointed out that "Winston's life was intertwined with the two social forces that would mark his future life - a member of the working class, viciously exploited by the capitalist system and an African American, subjected to the base degradations of national oppression."
Mitchell also said the forces that are poised to reelect President Obama in the November election are the very same forces that can bring about "the fundamental transformation of this society."
Jarvis Tyner, the executive vice chair of the Communist Party, in his tribute remarked that the Winston's thinking "built unity and confidence in the possibility of winning masses of white working people away from the self-defeating ideologies of racism and anticommunism."
Saying that this year's election could turn on the issue of race, Tyner argued "the Republican racist campaign must be solidly defeated at the polls next November."
He added that the Republicans "aim to divert mass anger from millionaires to minorities and immigrants; from Wall Street hustlers to the hungry and the homeless."
Danny Rubin, national board member of Communist Party and co worker of Winston for nearly thirty years, said in his tribute that what Winston "taught us stands in great stead today when the people of our country face so sharp a choice of direction, when they face an extreme right that wants to take everything severely backward ..."
Like the other speakers, he emphasized the importance of the fall elections.
The celebration ended with a wine and cheese reception giving everybody in attendance a chance to talk, look at the visual displays, and pick up a commemoration brochure that includes a biography of Winston's life, excerpts from his writings, and the full speeches of Davis, Mitchell, Tyner and Rubin.
May Day greetings
- Costas Aiolos
- Terrie Albano
- John Bachtell
- Anna Beryeles
- Demetre Beryeles
- Sylvia Bjornson
- Libby Colton
- Matt Dimick
- Alex Dimick
- Eddie Davis
- Esther Davis
- Corinne Eckstein
- Edna Farka
- Richard Giovanoni
- Phil Glaser
- Rose Goldberg
- Lottie Gordon
- Len Herman
- Charles Keller
- Leo Lazarus
- Costas Lekkas
- Sophia Levinson
- Joe Maida
- Naomi Maida
- Carole Marks and Bob Beachman
- David Mirtz
- Elena Mora
- Esther Moroze
- Marie Peterson
- Joseph Petticrew
- John Pietaro
- Maria Ramos
- Carol Ramos
- Eileen Reardon
- Thomas Riggins
- Gregory Roby
- Mary Russak
- Lillian Rydell
- Roy Rydell
- Martin Sawma
- Carrie Schrieber
- Robert Seier
- Gabe Smith
- Phil Stein and Gert Stein
- Walter Tillow
- Janice Walcot
- Dave Widorn
- Matt Weinstein
- Anne Yellin
- Jack York
The following sent May Day greetings in the People's Weekly World of May 1-7 2004 May Day Supplement page F, from the Northern Westchester Club.
- Abby Colman
- Morris Colman
- Nan Okin
- Pearl Oremland
- Ben Oremland
- Victor Perlo
- Ann Reeve
- Victor Rossi
- Alvin Warren
- ↑ PWW "A tribute to thee real life heroes" May 14, 1994, page 11
- ↑ [http://events.nydailynews.com/new-york-ny/events/show/186417946-2011-annual-better-world-awards-luncheon NY Daily News events, 2011 Annual Better World Awards Luncheon Sunday, May 22 1:30p at Winston Unity Hall, New York, NY]
- ↑ PWW October 7, 2000, page 2
- ↑ PWW, ...in NYC, November 4, 2000, page 2
- ↑ http://www.pww.org/article/articleview/10231/
- ↑ Progressive Newspaper Holds Better World Awards, Press Statement April 10, 2007
- ↑ PW People’s World hosts awards banquet in New York, Gabe Falsetta June 2 2011
- ↑ PW, Angela Davis headlines tribute for CPUSA’s Henry Winston, by: Sam Webb February 23 2012