Following the Colored Orphan Asylum founders Anna Shotwell and Mary Murray lead, who in the 1830’s gathered groups of friends and associates in their homes to address the growing concern for the care of colored orphans, Harlem Dowling West Side Center (HDWC) board VP Tim Mulvaney and his life-partner Stephen J. Kozuch hosted an intimate cocktail party honoring Harlem Dowling Gala 2010 award recipients. The event took place at their midtown abode where the couple introduced guests to their newest family member, daughter Tova.
Former Harlem Dowling West-Side Center resident physician Ursulina Bencosme, MD and developer Benjamin Warnke were the guests of honor. Dr. Bencosme is the 2010 recipient of the Dr. James McCune Smith award. The award is named in honor of the first African American Physician to practice medicine in the United States and a dedicated member of the Colored Orphan Asylum. Developer Benjamin Warnke will receive the 2010 Anna Shotwell and Mary Murray Founder Award. Mr. Warnke, who heads Warnke Community Consulting, shares the founding matrons’ Quaker faith. New York Amsterdam News Publisher and Editor in Chief Elinor Tatum, who wasn’t able to attend, is the 2010 recipient of the Alice Hall Dowling & Jane D. Edwards Trailblazer award.
On Thursday, November 4, in celebration of National Adoption Month, the agency will salute its distinguished honorees during Harlem Dowling Gala 2010. The celebratory affair will take place at Bridgewaters, 11 Fulton Street. The festive evening will include a live performance by saxophonist, Abraham Ogunlade.
Founded in 1836 as the Colored Orphan Asylum, Harlem Dowling is a non-for-profit multi-service agency providing out-of-home foster care, adoption, therapeutic placement, supportive housing for youth aging out of foster care, and other support services. Related services include, family preservation, HIV/AIDS services, family support services, and after school programs for children and families living in Central Harlem, Washington Heights, Southeast Queens and Far Rockaway.
Over the Past eight years Harlem Dowling, which was one of the United States first charitable foundations dedicated to children and first to take in ‘colored’ orphans, has helped over eight hundred displaced foster care kids find a place to call home. “This is a major milestone which reflects the dedication and commitment of our staff and the supporting communities” stated HD Executive Director, Dorothy Worrell.
Photos by Images of Us: Harlem Dowling 2010 Award Recipients left to right – Dr. Ursulina Benscombe, MD; Benjamin Warnke and Harlem Dowling Executive Director Dorothy Worrell : Honoree Benjamin Warnke, guest Tammy Pittman and Harlem Dowling Dwayne Seymour: Dr. Ursulina Benscombe, doing what she does best, caring for baby Tova: Harlem Dowling Board members left to right – Tim Mulvaney, Deborah L. Woolridge, Jean Patton and Gerald S. Migdol, Esq.