The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce will celebrate 125 years of continued service to Harlem and the “Harlems of the World” with a celebratory gala on Saturday, Feb. 25 at The City College of New York. Founded in 1896 as The Harlem Board of Commerce, The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce is one of the longest continuously active Chambers of Commerce in the nation.
“The mission of the Chamber whose motto is “The Business of Business is People” has been to continually improve the quality of life for all of its members, associates and residents, as well as to attract and develop quality business and professional services in the Greater Harlem community,” said Lloyd Williams, President and CEO of The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce. “Unfortunately, due to the COVID pandemic shutdown, we were not able to celebrate our Anniversary during the actual 125th year in 2021. But we are excited to put our storied history on full display and pay homage to the diverse individuals and institutions who have left an indelible mark on not just Harlem and New York City, but the world.”
This year’s gala honorees include Columbia University president Lee Bollinger, NAACP New York State Conference President Dr. Hazel N. Dukes, former Congressman Charlie Rangel, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Jekmar Associates President Louis Katos and Manna’s Restaurant Owner “Chef” Betty Park.
The evening will feature a musical performance by The Jeff Foxx Big Band, a dance showcase by Uptown Dance Academy paying homage to the Savoy Ballroom, Cotton Club and the Apollo Theater, and a live auction conducted by “Mr. Apollo” Billy Mitchell. The Chamber will preview an excerpt from a documentary film capturing over 12 decades of Harlem’s fabled history. The evening will be emceed by renown radio personalities G. Keith Alexander and Debi B.
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