2020 Scholarship News / CAAR News







       The following recipient has been sponsored by Willie G. Brown

Carson Belle is Gwen Wilson’s granddaughter.



CAAR and Trewyn Middle School

Trewyn Middle School is a public middle school in Peoria. The principal of Trewyn Middle School is Mrs. Renee Andrews.  411 students go to Trewyn Middle School, and the student to teacher ratio is 12:1.  

On October 30th CAAR provided red umbrellas to First and Third grade students to assist them in attending school on rainy days.  See attached pictures from our photo shoot. Also included is a picture from parents day.



2019 Scholarship News


Introducing the 2019 African American Hall of Fame Museum Scholarship Recipient sponsored by Concerned African American Retirees (CAAR)

Parker A. Johnson is a senior at Richwoods High School.  She is the daughter of Willie and Annette Coleman and has a 3.5/4 GPA.

Parker has been a captain of the Richwoods speech team for 4 years, a trombonist in the band for 4 years, SCAN member, President of the Youth Advisory Council, senator in the student council, a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Club member, and a student ambassador.  She was a sectional finalist in IHSA speech.  She has multiple years of experience as a Race for the Cure volunteer and works on the school newspaper.  Her passion to serve and her ability to bring together various factions serve her well when she changes hats among the groups that she chooses to serve.  She has been admitted to Bradley University and plans to major in Political Science.



=== 2018 ===


Click on this link to read about CAAR in the Traveler Newspaper



CAAR presented “Love Packets” to the Center for Prevention of Abuse.



CAAR was a proud sponsor of the “It Takes A Village Summer Event” held on June 3, 2018 at the John H. Gwynn, Jr. park.




Meet Kierra L. Scott

CAAR’s 2018 Scholarship recipient 

Presented at the African American Hall of Fame Museum’s

30th Annual Red, Black and Green Ball           


Kierra L. Scott

CAAR members & scholarship recipient Kierra Scot 

Kierra L. Scott is a senior at Peoria High School and is the daughter of Kenneth Scott and Valerie Blake.  She has a 3.87 GPA and is the recipient of CAAR’s 2018 African American Hall of Fame Museum Scholarship.  Kierra was awarded a scholarship from CAAR in the amount of $1,500.

Based on her academic achievement and recommendations from her teachers, Kierra was chosen to be a member of the Peoria High Pride team and was admitted into the National Honor Society.  She was on the Honor Roll and her goal is to be honored as a Sterling Merit recipient in the coming months.  While focusing on her academics and pushing herself in enriched classes, Kierra also participated in sports as a cheerleader for two years and a volleyball player for one year.  

In the fall of 2018, Kierra will attend Southern Illinois University Edwardsville with a major in Nursing.  Her career goal is to become a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner with a focus on saving the lives of premature babies.

Congratulations Kierra!  Keep up the great work!






2017 CAAR Celebration and Social Gathering



Short Stacks for a Tall Cause!



The Applebee’s fundraiser was held on August 5, 2017 and was a big success!  The CAAR organization was responsible for the service staff which included greeters, seaters, servers, and kitchen staff.  We worked together as a team, served several people, and had great time. 

We also had some guest volunteers.  There was Catherine White, who did the plating and “sort of” ran the kitchen.  I heard someone referred to her as “Captain Major”.   Ruby Rials and Yvonne Wickham each volunteered as servers.  Also, there was Olivia Warfield who worked as a greeter and led guests to their seats.  She was cordial, efficient, very popular and even took home tips. We heard she made $21.  Good job Olivia! 

The fundraising team thanks the CAAR team as well as the guest volunteers that helped to make the pancake breakfast a successful fundraiser.  And, a very special thank you goes to Gloria Williams who was the top ticket seller.  She sold a “boat load” of tickets.  Great job Gloria! 

Richard Lee – Photographer 


Attention all Cubs and baseball fans

Cubs Bus Trip is coming September 2, 2017!

There are 7 seats available.  Make your reservation now.

Click on the link for more information.


CAAR Meeting Group

Rosalind Lowry, President and Derrick Booth, Guest Speaker 




  (W.I.N.N.I.N.G.)  = What I need now in the ninth grade!

Derrick Booth – S.E.L. (Social and Emotional Learning) Program for district #150, CAAR’s guest speaker, is looking for adults in the community to be mentors to 9th grade students.

Training for mentors, parents, retiree’s and others will be held on Monday, June 5 and Monday, June, 19 at the District 150 Administration office on Wisconsin from 5:00 PM – 7:30 PM. Dinner will be served.

Contact: derrick.booth@pas150.org to register or if you have any questions.

The program will be conducted at Peoria High School, however, students from all high schools in Peoria will participate.

The program will run from Monday, June 12 – Thursday, July 20 from 9:00 to 10:00 AM.


May 23, 2017  MHS 8th Grade Promotion Celebration and Cookout

An 8th Grade Promotion Celebration was held on May 23, 2017 at Manual High School. Essays were submitted by the students to CAAR.  There were two recipients of brand new laptops that were chosen from approximately 80 students.  Miss Maria Madena was the recipient of a laptop from CAAR for “best academic achievements“, and Miss Jasmine Emerson was awarded a laptop from CAAR for having the distinction of being the “most improved” 8th grade student at MHS.  

All 8th graders and their families were asked to join CAAR in the ‘rubber’ gym for a cookout immediately following the ceremony.  The cookout menu consisted of the following items:  hamburgers, hot dogs, brats, potato salad, various chips, water,  soda and cupcakes. Photographs were taken by Richard Lee.


Al Hooks Hall of Fame

2017  African American Hall of Fame Museum Inductee

The Geraldine Mitchell Public Service Award was presented to Alfred J. Hooks

at the African American Hall of Fame Museum’s 29th Annual Red, Black and Green Ball

Alfred J. Hooks has dedicated countless hours to the Peoria area.


St. Plus X High School – Savannah, Ga – June 1964

Duke University – Bachelor of Science Mechanical Engineering – June 1968

First African American Mechanical Engineering Graduate


Caterpillar Inc. – 39 years – Final position – North American Marketing Manager

Community Affiliations

Chamber od Commerce Homeless Youth Coalition

Citizens Police Review Board

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Board Vice Chair


NAACP Political Action Committee

Peoria County Court Counselor Program

Peoria Opportunity Foundation Board, Past President

Peoria Police and Fire Commission

Peoria Urban League Man-to-Man Program

Peoria Urban League TSTM Program

Quest Charter Academy Board

YMCA Black Achievers Board

YMCA Board of Directors

CAAR –  Concerned African American Retirees, Past President




Congratulations to Rosalind Zanders-Lowry!

Rosalind, CAAR President, was identified as a Legend meaning she has communicated a life of perseverance and power; of hope and healing; and of integrity.  Her life has reflected a community activism on local, state, and national levels.

The women of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Peoria Alumnae Chapter, held the Second Annual Sisterhood and Legends Luncheon during the month that is designated Women’s History Month.  On Saturday, March 25, 2017 at the George Washington Carver Center, this ground breaking celebration was filled with love, enthusiasm, and power.

The Sisters component of the luncheon was developed to foster unity between the four major sororities of the National Panhellenic Association:  Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Sigma Gamma Rho, and Zeta Phi Beta.  One central platform of the National Panhellenic Council is that of collaboration with a focus on demonstrating service to the community.

Congratulations to all eight of the 2017 LEGENDS:  Janet Allen, Erica Baird, Pearly Bonds, Rosalind Lowry, Alma McConnell, Mary McDade, Valeria Pierce and Maxine Wortham.