Jerry Success and family

Good Thursday morning, Evanston.

Love that sunshine. True, we are still under a “Hazardous Weather Alert” from the National Weather Service for gusty winds and excessive heat. Still, it feels like a little relief because the humidity is down and the temperatures will climb “only” to the mid-90s. And there is that sunshine! Therefore, with a hint of caution, please feel free to prudently enjoy. Now, on to more news:

Willard Elementary School Assistant Principal Jerry Succes’ story, as one parent once said at a District 65 school board meeting, “is an Evanston success story.” As an 8-year-old he immigrated to the United States from Haiti with his brothers, and they and their parents settled in Evanston. Over the years since then, Succes has worked in every single school in the district and even at Evanston Township High School as a coach, lunchroom supervisor, teacher assistant, child care worker, reading specialist and, finally, as an assistant principal for the last 13 years. But this school year, District 65 decided against rehiring him.


Juneteenth is America’s true freedom day. At least that’s how Kemone Hendricks, organizer of Evanston’s annual Juneteenth parade, views the nineteenth day of June due to its indelible albeit unheralded legacy in American history. “Everyone was not free on July 4,” she said. “July 4 was more of a freeing of land, not the people. Only white people were quote unquote free during that time.”


COVID-19 by the numbers: 30 cases were reported on Tuesday, June 14, the last day the city updated case totals. The seven-day average is 28 cases per day.


Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Credit: Photo by Debbie-Marie Brown

Meet one of the first 16 reparations recipients: ‘I had a great childhood. And I’m not going to complain’. Kenneth Wideman – a lifelong Evanstonian and sports lover – spent 30 years coaching basketball with the Fellowship of Afro-American Men (FAAM) Youth Basketball League; a program that offers basketball and cheerleading programs to middle-school children. At one of their weekly winter season games, attendees might have caught a glimpse of the 76-year-old Wideman, who also happens to be one of the city’s inaugural beneficiaries of a $25,000 restorative housing grant.

Credit: Photo courtesy Virginia Mullin

Levy Lecture: A circumnavigator’s photographic safari to Rwanda. A map of Africa set the mood right from the start in Virginia Mullin’s Levy Lecture presentation and photographic slideshow on June 14 as she shared her experiences from a pre-pandemic trip to see the gorillas of Rwanda in their natural habitat. Mullin has traveled the world for both business and pleasure. She shared her passion, her stories and her travel advice with the Levy Lecture crowd.

At This Time: Wednesday at 6:35 a.m. Ire Arogundade (left) and Olivia Pierce follow the rising sun from the Clark Street Beach. They woke up early to watch the sun climb above the horizon at 5:14 a.m. “I wanted to see it before I leave,” said Ire, who graduated this weekend and heads to Los Angeles Saturday to start a career as a screenwriter. Olivia, a junior in musicology, saw her first sunrise, too. “It was ominous and then it was very pretty,” she said. They spent more than an hour on the lifeguard tower. Said Ire: “We mostly talked about the future.” (Photo by Richard Cahan)

The Evanston Symphony Orchestra will perform at ETHS on June 19. The Evanston Symphony Orchestra rounds out its 75th anniversary season at the Evanston Township High School Auditorium Sunday aftrernoon, performing Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4, one of Mozart’s most famous piano concertos and Beethoven’s Egmont Overture.

Picturing Evanston. Roof detail of Christ Temple Missionary Baptist Church on Simpson Street, west of Dewey Avenue. (Photo by Joerg Metzner)

Apply to join the Evanston Police Department through July 18. The application process to become a police officer with the Evanston Police Department is now open. Base salary ranges from $69,689 to $102,726. A written exam will be administered online between Aug. 2 and Aug. 4. Preference will be given to candidates who live in Evanston and/or have military experience


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Around the web

Here’s what the Federal Reserve’s 0.75 percentage point rate hike — the highest in 28 years — means for you. The move, announced by the Fed on Wednesday, represents the largest increase of interest rates since 1994, and it will impact the cost of borrowing money for mortgages and credit cards. Economists hope the hike will tamp down inflation, but some worry it could also cause a recession.

Climate change could trigger toxic disasters along Lake Michigan, new report finds. A report published Wednesday by Chicago’s Environmental Law and Policy Center found that rising Lake Michigan water levels and larger waves from stronger wind gusts, all fueled by climate change, could cause flooding around toxic waste sites like nuclear plants and shuttered coal plants in the coming years. The report notes that densely populated neighborhoods – including Rogers Park, Edgewater and Uptown on the North Side and South Shore on the South Side – face potentially devastating flooding if weather patterns continue, including the possibility of severe flooding as much as a half-mile inland. There was no mention of Evanston in the report.

With Roe on the precipice, Americans are having more abortions. The number of people seeking an abortion in the United States rose in 2020 for the first time in 30 years as the nation awaits a potential Supreme Court repeal of Roe v. Wade. In Illinois, the number of abortions increased by 25% from 2017 to 2020, while neighboring states like Missouri passed more abortion restrictions.


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Duncan Agnew

Duncan Agnew covers Evanston public schools, affordable housing, City Hall and more for the RoundTable. He also writes long-form investigations, features and the morning email newsletter three times a...