Special to The Dallas Examiner


Chris Howell Communications, in partnership with Dallas County Health and Human Services, UT Southwestern and Parkland Hospital, will host Know Your Status Dallas, an HIV/AIDS awareness and testing event. This inaugural event aims to empower the community through education against this trending epidemic. Currently, Dallas County leads the state of Texas in the highest rate of HIV infections.

The event will be held on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Southwest Center Mall, located at 3662 W. Camp Wisdom Road. Panel discussion with elected officials and local celebrities will be at noon.

Award-winning actress/singer Sheryl Lee Ralph, who is also founder of the DIVA Foundation, which supports HIV and AIDS education in addition to testing, will be the event’s guest of honor.

“Know Your Status Dallas is a landmark event that I hope will be emulated around the country,” Ralph stated. “I am excited to be a part of this day that will undoubtedly change many lives in our fight against HIV/AIDS.”

Dallas County Health & Human Services Director Zachary Thompson and Edith Lewis, an HIV advocate/peer navigator with Project Impact, will lead a panel discussion detailing the psychological and physical effects of living with HIV/AIDS. Lewis learned 17 years ago that she is HIV positive and has been a pivotal voice in the African American community in the fight for HIV/AIDS awareness. The panel will be followed by a discussion about resources and support outlets for those infected with or affected by the disease.

To make a donation or volunteer for the event, email info@knowyourstatusdallas.com.


On Saturday, Park Cities/Central Dallas Democrats will host forums for Congressional District 30 and for County Commissioners Court District 1 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the University Park Public Library, 8383 Preston Center Plaza, Ste. 300, University Park.

The Congressional forum will be held first and will feature Barbara Mallory Caraway and Brandon Vance, the two challengers to the current officeholder, Eddie Bernice Johnson, who will answer questions submitted in writing by the audience.

The Commissioners forum will feature the current officeholder, Dr. Theresa Daniel, and challengers, Ryan Minyard and Regoberto Cortez. Participants will also answer questions submitted in writing by the audience.

The final half-hour will feature brief announcements about general political issues and upcoming local elections, along with opportunities for all candidates for other offices to introduce themselves.


The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA, the nation’s single largest Muslim organization, has launched an unprecedented and comprehensive campaign to separate true Islam from extremism. The “True Islam and the Extremists” campaign educates Americans and Muslim Americans on the peaceful, anti-extremist teachings of Islam by clarifying 11 of the most common misconceptions extremists use to radicalize youth.

The Women’s Auxiliary of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Dallas will host a mosque open house with a presentation and Q/A session on the “True Islam and the Extremists” campaign for women only on Feb. 7 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. followed by refreshments at Baitul Ikram Mosque, located at 1850 Hedgcoxe Road in Allen. Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson will be the special guest. This is an opportunity for all American women to visit a mosque and ask Muslim women any questions they may have about Islam. This event is free, but participants are asked to RSVP to Ismat Mahmood at 214-326-9152 or dallastabligh@lajnausa.net.


The newly formed Purchasing from People with Disabilities Advisory Committee held its first meeting in Austin on Jan. 22. The 13-member committee will provide recommendations to the Texas Workforce Commission on matters related to the Texas Purchasing from People with Disabilities program, which assists individuals with disabilities in achieving independence through productive employment opportunities.

The Texas Purchasing from People with Disabilities program is dedicated to furthering the state’s policy of encouraging and assisting people with disabilities to achieve independence by engaging in useful, productive employment activities. Under the program, individuals with severe disabilities produce products or perform services through Community Rehabilitation Programs. The Advisory Committee members assist in establishing performance goals for the Purchasing from People with Disabilities program and establish criteria for certifying CRPs. Legislation passed by the 84th Texas Legislature transferred oversight of the program to TWC.

Committee members will serve staggered four-year terms and may not serve more than two terms. TWC issued a call for volunteers and committee members were selected after careful consideration of qualifications. Members were introduced at the inaugural meeting and individual terms were established.

The committee will meet at least twice annually and meeting notices are filed with the Texas Register.

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