Insight News

Feb 12th

Phyllis Wheatley celebrates 85th anniversary

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gertrudebrownwithkidsPhyllis Wheatley Community Center marked its 85th Anniversary with a celebration on Friday, October 23 at Augsburg College’s Christensen Center in Minneapolis. Honorary co-hosts Sharon Sayles-Belton, Al McFarlane, Don and Sondra Samuels, Mary Merrill-Anderson, Art Rolnick, Annie Young, Harry Davis, Jr., Phyllis Wheatley Board Members and Senior Alumni were all present to celebrate the organization’s legacy of service to children and families in the community.
The evening included live music by SLI’JE and event sponsors included Insight News and Fredrikson & Byron, PA.
“We have much to celebrate,” said Executive Director Barbara Milon. “Through the organization’s 85-year history, countless men, women and children have found hope, discovery and success at Phyllis Wheatley as well as support for the opportunities and challenges of daily life.”

Aspiring athletes, entertainers, educators  and civic leaders have all graced the center; it is widely known for its excellence through programs such as the Golden Gloves boxing program, and for providing  lodging to African American students and others during a time when they were not allowed elsewhere due to racial discrimination. Most recently, the center earned national accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) for its Mary T. Wellcome Child Development Center, and launched the Phyllis Wheatley Community Lawyering Project (PWCLP) which provides free legal advice to low income residents.  

Established in 1924, Phyllis Wheatley provides comprehensive, quality programs in lifelong learning, child development and family support for the diverse greater Minneapolis community and is recognized in the Minnesota Historical Society’s MN 150 exhibit as one of the significant people, places and things that Minnesotans say shaped our state.

Children involved in Phyllis Wheatley programs are prepared for and successful in school and community life while family leaders receive support in developing skills to strengthen healthy relationships and foster family stability and civic engagement.

For more information call (612) 374-4342 or visit the center’s web site at

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