The West Winter Park Talks

December 11, 2013 Features

Years before East Winter Park decided to spend $90,000 on a marketing consultant, a white male Graduate Marketing Instructor, community activist, and Rollins College alum, inspired by his parents and a couple of relatives, wondered to himself how he could help West Winter Park, a predominantly African-American community, promote and preserve its historic brand, and offer free scholarships to give the area’s youth a leg up in life.  And, for added measure, why not showcase what makes Winter Park special, and appoint a mayor and vice mayor?

OK…breathe in and out…have a seat…relax.  This isn’t what you think it is.  And it certainly won’t cost West Winter Park $90,000.

The idea would be to accept a conditional donation, from this white male, of time and expertise for a one year period only.  Part-time, of course.

In fact, that’s what a group of West Winter Park leaders have been mulling over for quite some time.

Should Rev. A. C. Cobb of Mt. Moriah Church be appointed Honorary Mayor of West Winter Park…an honorary title with dignity and respect.  And should Will Graves (a white male) be appointed Honorary Vice Mayor of West Winter Park (term-limited to one year and ineligible to be Honorary Mayor per his personal wishes).  Mr. Graves conceived of the entire idea and would be donating ample time and expertise for free in keeping with the tradition of his family members who played major national roles in helping African-Americans…groundbreaking preservationist, Barbara Drew Hoffstot, and JFK’s Deputy Attorney General, Nicholas Katzenbach, who later became an I.B.M. director.

Will Graves would donate Will Graves Scholarships (Taught by himself on self-improvement topics based upon his thirteen years of university teaching experience and five years as a weekly self-improvement newspaper columnist in a town with three times the population of Winter Park).  He would also work on a stretch-goal of using his national business networking ties to try to attract an “I Have A Dream” Foundation grant.

If Will Graves is willing to try to obtain free college educations for every West Winter Park child who graduates from high school, what have you got to lose except ignorance?

The titles are ceremonial.  We won’t be fixing potholes or enacting legislation.  It’s all about respect for West Winter Park residents.

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