Donna Hernandez

Channing Kennedy Donna is the Special Events Coordinator and Operations Manager for the Applied Research Center's New York Office. A native of Philadelphia, PA, she has organized in her North Philadelphia community on police issues, housing and welfare rights and Puerto Rican independence. She graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a B.A. in Letters Arts and Science with a minor in African American Studies. She began organizing at an early age with the Women's Community Revitalization Project (WCRP) in Philadelphia. While at Penn State, she was active in student organizing and government. She worked with several groups aimed at recruiting and retaining students of color to higher education.

Prior to working at ARC, she was Executive Director of the Police-Barrio Relations Project (PBRB), a Philadelphia non-profit fighting for police accountability and

Who Supports Our Troops? Not Our Healthcare System

"The Story of a Soldier," Tuesday’s New York Times article about custody battles and other trials faced by returning soldiers, reminds me of stories I heard from my uncle's Army buddies. According to the article's Specialist Leydi Mendoza, she joined in order to have better healthcare and financial aid options.

Jose Hernandez Crosses Borders Beyond the Stars

6a00d8341c630a53ef0120a51bbafe970b.jpg More than forty years after the first space launch to the moon, Jose Hernandez, a Californian-born American astronaut born to Mexican immigrants, joins Discovery’s 37th mission to space.

Philadelphia Takes Out Loan; Liberty Bell Repossession Imminent

Philidelphia-2005.jpg Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter announced that the city is taking out a short-term loan of $250 million from JP Morgan Chase. The loan has a 3% interest rate until December 1st and will go up to 8% thereafter. Nutter is nuts if he thinks that JP Morgan Chase is going to allow him to re-finance the interest rate on this loan before December 1st.

The Venceremos Brigade Challenges the U.S. Travel Ban on Cuba [VIDEO]

Watch CBS Videos Online On Monday, 150 members from the 40th contingent of the Venceremos Brigade returned from their ten-day solidarity and education trip to Cuba. The brigadistas openly acknowledged their trip as an act of civil disobedience while crossing back into the U.S. via Canada and has challenged the US to review its unfair and unconstitutional stance on the Cuban island and its people.

What Should Happen After the Beer Summit

obama beer.jpgOver the past month, race relations have heated up in US cities where government officials have been accused of posting racist messages on the Internet. There have been several investigations into the incidents. People want to know: who was it? were they on duty?

If I Ruled the World

Uewb_04_img0266.jpg Last night Nas’ song If I Ruled the World kept playing back in my head after a long discussion with a friend of mine about Medgar Evers. Today marks the anniversary of the day that civil rights leader Medgar Evers was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery. In 1963, Evers was shot in the back of the head in Mississippi by Byron De La Beckwith, a Ku Klux Klan and White Citizens’ Council member.

Harlem Youth Exposes Teen Homelessness at Human Rights Watch International Film Festival

by Cynthia Carrion Each night 1,600 teenagers in New York City find themselves homeless. Harlem’s own Clevins Browne and Olivia McClendon take this issue on as part of Youth Producing Change, an innovative program of youth-produced short films from across the globe, presented on June 19-20, 2009, by the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival(June 11-25), in collaboration with the founding presenter, Adobe Youth Voices.

A Little Recess for Your Weekend

_LXF1334-1.jpg(photo courtesy of Recess) Frigid NYC is an annual event that highlights up and coming playwrights. The best part about this festival is that it gives the proceeds of the ticket purchases to the artists themselves. The highlight of the 2009 Frigid festival for me was a play by Una Aya Osato titled Recess. The one-woman show was funny, sad, inspirational and eye opening.

Is Green really the new Black?

greenjobs.jpg I’m at the Good Jobs; Green Jobs National conference in Washington DC where 2,500 plus people have gathered. The more popular workshops have focused on how to create Green Solutions that include and focus on communities of color. Here are some highlights from the Green for All workshop – Robert Bullard was a great moderator and set the stage for a very important discussion that focused on equity issues in the Green movement.

NYC Picket in Solidarity with the Stella D'Oro Strikers

The 135 workers of Stella D'Oro, the biscuit producers, most of whom are women and Latinos, are confronting a difficult Christmas on the streets. The company has refused to negotiate and is demanding that the workers return to work without a contract in an attempt to destroy their union.

What About the Bottom?

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been aggressively paying attention to tnews about the US economy and attempting to figure out if it will wipe out the little bit of funds in my 401K. The fact that I have a 401K is light years ahead of my family and many friends. Truth be told – unfortunately, many of them are still hoping Social Security can support their needs when they retire. At this rate, they’ll be lucky if they still have a home in the next few years!

A Mi Me Gusta La Gasolina! – Has He Been Inhaling the Fumes!?

mccain_daddyankee.jpg On Monday, Island-based Puerto Rican and Reggaeton artist, Daddy Yankee, who made an international name for himself with the song “Gasolina”, endorsed presidential hopeful John McCain citing the senator's support of “Hispanics and his immigration efforts.” I’m ashamed to say so but if this endorsement is seen as a representation of the Puerto Rican vote, some stateside Pue

One World, One Dream - Not in Beijing

olympic wall.JPG Beijing officials have built a 10-foot wall around entire neighborhoods south of Tiananmen Square in hopes of speeding up a last minute beautification process for the 2008 Olympics. Say what!? Residents, mostly merchants, who hoped to increase their business with all of the Olympic participants and spectators’ will now be blocked off from all traffic.

Catch 22 – Cardiac Arrest Donors of Color Save Lives

The experience of losing a loved can be even more devastating when you realize certain preventative measures could have avoided their level of illness. This thought came to mind today when I read a study about patients of color who receive a kidney from a cardiac failure patient having a higher level of success when the donor was also a person of color. I couldn’t help but remember my sister who I lost to kidney failure. The kidney failure was caused by insulin intake given to help control her juvenile diabetes.


expatpic.jpgThe Culture Project, a theater in Soho in New York City known for its dedication to theater for progressive change, is currently showing Expatriate, a new play with music about race, friendship, art and fame. Lenelle MoÏse, the playwright who also plays the role of Claudie, is accompanied by Karla Mosley who plays the role of Alphine.

Keystone State Plastered With Racist Posters

In January 2008, Keystone Skinheads, a hate group, posted messages from New York to Philadelphia encouraging people to take back their neighborhoods. nycandphilly.jpg The poster doesn’t address where white residents are newly popping up. One of the major reasons white flight is happening is because people are so eager to move into neighborhoods like Harlem and Bedford Stuyvesant.

Detectives Found Not Guilty in Sean Bell Case

Today is an emotional day for New York and many major cities dealing with police brutality issues in their neighborhoods. Judge Arthur Cooperman ruled that the detectives Michael Oliver, Gescard Isnora and Marc Cooper bore no criminal responsibility for Bell's death or the wounding of his two friends, Trent Benefield and Joseph Guzman.

Is this Justice for Mumia?

mumia.jpg In the last week, the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled that Mumia Abu-Jamal should have a new jury trial to determine only whether he should serve life in prison or be sentenced to death. The decision was 2 to 1, with a 41-page dissent written by Judge Thomas Ambro in which he pushed for a new trial altogether and stated "No matter how guilty one may be, he or she is entitled to a fair and impartial trial by a jury of his or her peers." He cited the Snyder v.

Let's Crunch the Numbers posted a story the other day on rebate checks from the IRS with a schedule to let everyone who files their taxes know when they’ll be receiving the $600 promised to individuals earning less than $75,000 a year. The Federal Reserve also announced interest rate cuts today. But will that be enough to address the hardest hit of the U.S.'s communities?

Puerto Rican Independentistas Protest Grand Jury

Today we commemorate one of the first systemic sociologists in Latin America, Eugenio Maria de Hostos. De Hostos, a founder of the Antillean Confederation, an organization known for lobbying for the liberation of various Caribbean and Latin American countries from Spain and later the US, was also known for his writings and teachings.