We invite BDPA Detroit chapter members and supporters to use this topic to share information about upcoming events as well as chapter programs or services.

BDPA Detroit chapter founded in Feb 1981 is one of the largest and most recognized chapters in the country.

Replies to this Topic

My first BDPA experience occurred in the Detroit chapter . I served as a chapter program committee chairperson under the chapter leadership of Diane Davis . Many years later I worked to bring the annual national BDPA technology conference to Detroit MI . - Wayne Hicks

BDPA Detroit chapter president Anquanette Clegg shared her post conference thoughts with her stakeholders in the message below:

At the 31st annual National BDPA Technology Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina, Compuware Corporation received an award for "Best Companies for Blacks In Technology".

Compuware also financially supported BDPA Detroit's Student IT Education & Scholarship (SITES) Program. With the funding, Detroit was able to send four (4) students (Matthew Clark, Jourdan West, Daniel Rothchild, and Darryn Brundage-Forrest) to participate in a Web Design competition. This year there were 23 teams, and Detroit's HSCC Team won 2nd Place. The Jesse Bemley Scholarship goes to the top five high school student teams competing in the annual national HSCC championships. The top five teams are those that received the highest team scores in the three phases of the HSCC competition (Oral, Written, and Programming competitions). Each member on the Detroit Team will receive a Bemley Scholarship award of $2,000 for college from the BDPA Education & Technology Foundation (BETF).

Thanks to all the members who volunteered your time for the program. Many of you spent countless hours interviewing and training students and helping with the local mock competition. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed and they are appreciated! A SPECIAL thanks goes out to Tonji Zimmerman, Detroit's HSCC Coordinator and Trainer. She's given up practically all of her Saturdays for 5 months, to train the students and her hard work truly shined at the Conference.

While the Chapter can't repay anyone for their efforts, I hope you can find comfort in the great achievement of the Detroit Team.

Last but not least thanks to Renee Kent who was the student's chaperone this year!

Congrats to Detroit's Board of Director's and Members! At the Awards Gala the Detroit Chapter was the 2nd runner-up for the Chapter of the Year award! The National BDPA Awards Program provides a means to recognize individual chapters and members for their outstanding achievements and contributions to the mission and objectives of the National organization.

Thanks to the chapter Board of Directors for all of your support. A SPECIAL thanks goes to Tamika Smith (Diva Designs) for her work in preparing and submitting the Award Booklet. I, as Chapter President, have never been so proud to represent an organization of leaders who have effortlessley worked on behalf of this great Chapter.

Everybody can be great... because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love. - Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • September 10th at 7:00 PM - Board of Director's meeting - If you are interested in attending you must send an email to
  • September 17th at 6:30 PM at Tech Town - Information Exchange Meeting - Further details will be sent soon.
  • November 12th - Detroit's 1st Technology and Education Banquet - Details will be sent soon!

We are still looking for volunteers to join the 2010 Board of Director's! If you are interested in serving, please contact chapter president-electMarkita Wadley.

It goes without saying that I have a soft spot in my heart for BDPA Detroit chapter. As such, it feels great to know that we will be issuing $2,000 Bemley Scholarships to the young men that represented Detroit chapter at the recent national high school computer competition ( HSCC ) held in Raleigh NC. However, we need some grassroots support from BETF-Blog readers if we hope to have this same level of Bemley Scholarships in 2010. Won't you consider making a secure online donation in support of our efforts?
IT Professionals to Honor Michigan High School Students . Students who participated in the Detroit chapter of Black Data Processing Associates’ high school training camp will see the fruits of months of hard work tonight when they are honored at a scholarship and education awards banquet at Compuware Corp. at 7 tonight. Matthew Clark, a senior at Cass Technical High School; Darryn Brundage-Forrest, a sophomore at Renaissance High School; Daniel Rothchild, a freshman at Pioneer High School, and Jourdan West, a freshman at Michigan State University, represented the chapter at the 2009 National BDPA Technology Conference in Raleigh, N.C., in August. The team competed against more than 25 other chapters and won second place in Web design at the conference.

Read the rest of the Detroit Free Press article here.
Diane Davis served as BDPA Detroit chapter president prior to her reign as our national president. Diane taught many of us the importance of recognizing BDPA's legacy. She always took time to pay honor to those that came before her in BDPA.

Here is a slideshow that showed the first 20 years of BDPA history in Detroit that Diane recently shared with me:

I wonder if any of the current leaders in BDPA Detroit will take some time to update this slideshow to document the chapter's progress from 1981 until today?

Another great thing about the Detroit Chapter and Diane Davis is how they reached out and assisted in founding numerous other chapters. Specifically the Massachusetts chapter among others.


Nice bio.

Thanks for sharing

Renee and I were both part of the BDPA 'kitchen cabinet' of Diane Davis back in the early 1990s [NOTE: Renee and Diane are shown in the photo down below]. We were both officers during the chapter's vibrant hey-day. I moved away from Detroit in mid-1990s and Renee took over as the BDPA Detroit chapter president in 1995-1996. Renee is now a CIO for a Black-owned firm in Detroit.

She was kind enough to participate in our Take Five Interview Series .
  1. How did you get involved in working with BDPA? - BDPA came to my attention from one of my professors I was earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Science. A group of students were asked to attend the monthly meeting. After hearing the dynamic speakers and how welcoming, it felt to be among my peers. I decided to become part of the organization. I got involved with BDPA because I was making a career change. I believe that I needed to network with people in the industry I was pursuing and if I came across a problem I had a place to turn too.
  2. What is the most rewarding aspect of working with BDPA? - One of the most rewarding aspects of working with BDPA was the long term relationships I have built during my association with the organization. Another aspect was an opportunity to build upon my interpersonal, management and leadership skills. I found that the amount of influence or power a manager maintains is one way to categorize management styles.

    Still another aspect was that greater collaboration was a must because it improves coordination. Management of a chapter had to be focused on outputs, process interfaces, and clear rules of engagement. In order to govern a chapter the president needed strong working relationships to be successful; eccentric, ego-driven personalities will be an expensive luxury that few can afford.

    The next aspect that was rewarding was preparing the members of the chapter that the old school managers and executives will retire early or will be forced to bring new mindsets to the knowledge worker environment.

    Another aspect was working with the students of the high school computer competition and watching when the light bulbs go off in their heads that means an awakening has transpired.
  3. Tell us about a defining moment in your life? - One recent defining moment was when I got my dissertation proposal approved and I can officially say I am a doctoral candidate.
  4. Who is your hero and why? - My hero was my grandmother. Growing up I watch how hard she worked to make a life for herself and the family. In addition, how she would never give up if she had a task to complete. She gave me the strength to achieve my dreams and that the sky was the limit.
  5. Any advice for people considering donation to BETF? - One piece of advice is if we do not take care of ourselves who will?

My greatest memories of Renee come from the annual ski trips that our chapter used to take with other BDPA folks from around the country. I wonder if she remembers those ski trips?!? Anyhow, I encourage you to share some love with Renee!
Shayna Toyan-Joy Bradford was a member of the high school computer competition (HSCC) team trained by BDPA Detroit chapter in 2003. She and her HSCC teammates traveled to Philadelphia in August 2003 to compete in the national HSCC championships. The team did well ... they finished in fifth place.

Shayna recently shared her HSCC testimonial with us:

During my tenth grade year of High School, my computer teacher handed out flyers about the BDPA HSCC Detroit chapter. At that time, I had a very deep interest in Computer Science & Engineering. I knew that if I were allowed to participate in the HSCC, it would help prepare me for my future studies and career goals. Thankfully, I was allowed the opportunity to train and work with the BDPA HSCC Detroit Chapter. The trainers/mentors were extremely knowledgeable and had first hand experience in a variety of Information Technology fields. I had no idea that I would be exposed to such talented, genuine, and motivating people. After training with the BDPA HSCC Detroit chapter, I felt confident that I possessed truly valuable skills that I could use beyond competing in the National BDPA HSCC.

Competing at the BDPA National HSCC competition was an extremely memorable and valuable experience. The competition allowed the HSCC teams to understand the distinct line between theory and practice in the Computer Science industry. Also, the competition gave us a thorough and raw introduction to the competitive IT industry. I feel, most importantly, the competition taught us how critical it is to perfect your skill set and have a dynamic mindset, because, ultimately your team is depending on you.

Overall, my experience with BDPA led to my continued interest in technology. I decided to concentrate in Neuroscience during my undergraduate studies. However, during college, I worked in the IT department and in my final year of studies, I started working with Apple. I plan to pursue a career in Neuroscience research but, I am looking forward to using the technological skills BDPA helped hone to advance my understanding of Brain disease and function.

Shayna is now a mother and a business owner. She owns Textures by Nefertiti, a natural hair care salon and spa in Detroit.
BDPA Detroit chapter has a powerful legacy in its training of K-12 students. Hundreds of young people have participated in the chapter's Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program over the past quarter century.

That legacy continues in 2013! The SITES program in Detroit starts early in the year and concludes in mid-fall with an awards presentation. The training begins with teaching HTML, CSS, and JavaScript before moving to more intense training of J2EE technologies, Java programming, JSP & JSTL, JDBC/SQL, project management, time management and computer history knowledge.

1st row (L-R): Tonji Zimmerman (Coordinator/Trainer), Richard Session (Trainer), Cortez Christian, Bradley Wise, Elizabeth Ho, Desiree Taylor 2nd row (L-R): Anthony Garrett-Leverett (Coordinator/Trainer), Charles McIntosh II, Thomas Graves, Joseph Sigmon, Cameron Campbell Students not in photo: Cameron Hughes, Howard Smith

BDPA Detroit chapter holds its SITES training sessions at Compuware headquarters office. Funding for the program comes from corporate sponsors (Compuware, General Motors and Trinity Health), membership dues and supporters like you!
BDPA Detroit (founded February 1981) has a powerful legacy as a 4-time Chapter of the Year winner (1989, 1994-1996) and 6-time national High School Computer Competition (HSCC) champions (1991, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2000). The chapter has recent HSCC alumni who parlayed their BDPA experiences into college scholarships that helped them continue their STEM-based education at Harvard University, Morehouse College, University of California, San Diego and Wayne State University.

The chapter seeks to find that championship form again in 2014.

L-R: Matthew Jackson, Joshua Christenson, Chalse Okorom, Charles McIntosh II, Bradley Wise, DeAngelo Robinson, Elizabeth Ho, Paul Bowan, Howard Smith

The HSCC training program began in mid-January with teaching HTML, CSS, and JQuery. Next the students receive intense training of J2EE technologies, JSP & JSTL, Java programming, JDBC/SQL, project & time management, and computer history knowledge.

We could use your financial support to provide additional college scholarships for these Detroit-based students!

Post Reply

You must be logged in and a member of this Groupsite in order to post a reply to this topic.
To post a reply, contact your group manager(s) Join this Groupsite


Powered by

Visibility Public Membership By Invitation or Approved Request Default Profile Professional

Your Status Not Logged-In