News Articles on/by Tamia

JOY AND PAIN IN AFRICA

A POLICEWOMAN’S VISIT TO UGANDA IS PERSONALLY, SPIRITUALLY EDIFYING

Tamia Dow is aglow, smiling so deep her dimples plunge like arroyos and talking in a stream-of-consciousness flow—fast and animated, giddy as a child showing off Christmas presents, her sunny disposition providing a counterpoint to the cold drizzle blanketing the Valley this morning. A bacony tang creases the air inside the IHOP on Maryland Parkway. Amid clatter from the breakfast crowd—men leafing through newspapers, women talking, businessfolk caucusing—Dow’s voice resonates as she narrates pictures of her recent vacation to Uganda: There she is at the equator next to a sign reading,”What took you so long?” There she is with her host family. Cradling a crying baby. Befriending a pygmy (he comes to her shoulders). Backdropped by Bundibugyo’s lush countryside.

Other pictures are disheartening. Here she is building a brick wall at a battered-women’s shelter—”an angry husband tore down the wire fence.” Here’s the inside of the barren refuge, where there’s no furniture except bedding. This is her amid orphaned children and abused women—wives who’ve escaped batterers, girls who have fled the female genital mutilation that’s widely viewed as a cultural passage into womanhood. I wince at a grotesque photo of a woman without lips: “They were chopped off by her husband,” Dow says. Instead of a mouth, the woman has a circular mound of pink flesh exposing three longish, misshapen teeth and gums that look discolored and pulverized. I wonder how she eats.

At this, the Metro policewoman voices what would become a common refrain during breakfast: “God called me to Uganda.”

Located in Central Africa and bordered by the Sudan, Kenya, Congo, Rwanda and Tanzania, Uganda is a study in dichotomy: invigorated economies in metropolitan areas, rampant squalor in the sticks; generally peaceful in the south, entropy in the war-ravaged north (Joseph Kony’s murderous Lord’s Resistance Army abducts and slaughters civilians with impunity). In the past 18 years, more than 1.6 million people have fled to squalid refugee camps in Southern Uganda and in places like Sudan, which, until Sunday’s historic peace accord, had Africa’s longest-running civil war.

Dow came here to see her money in action and to minister—the nation is 80 percent Catholic and, remember, God called her. For years, she’s financially supported a shelter for battered women run by Uganda Police Force Superintendent Helley Aylek, whom she met at a conference of the International Association of Women Police. A detective, Dow’s long been interested in women’s issues, periodically teaching workshops on how female cops can survive gender discrimination and sexual harassment. The plight of the Ugandan women was something she wanted to see up close.

“They’re treated like property, bought and paid for with a dowry,” she says. “Domestic violence isn’t a crime. Men can be arrested for assault, but most women don’t testify. They are financially dependent on their husbands, so that limits what they can do.”

Her pancakes, bacon and potatoes arrive at an untimely point: She’s describing female genital mutilation. Every December, girls are dressed up nicely and taken to the bush and sliced up with a knife; healing involves men urinating on their butchered crotches, then stitching up the wounds tight. “When the woman has sex again, imagine what that does,” Dow says, cringing her face and body.

So for 12 days in November, Dow explored southern and western Uganda, drinking in every experience—flattered by the young boys who bowed to her and young girls who kneeled to greet her; inspired that most of the children had biblical names; thrilled to educate pygmies on human rights; perplexed by being called mzunga, which means white person (her caramel skin is lighter than the Ugandan norm).

The abuse shelter is sequestered in a remote part of Uganda, its location kept secret to protect the inhabitants. Aylek created it as an Underground Railroad of sorts, a way to strengthen a patchwork escape system for abused women. Usually, they would stay in homes of the sympathetic. Often, somebody would spot them and tell their husbands, who’d come to the door demanding their return. Dow spent three days at the shelter, a free-standing home a stone’s throw from a camp for the displaced, mostly refugees escaping Kony’s carnage. It’s there that she saw her money in action.

As spartan as it is, the shelter is a haven for woman whose lives are rife with indignities created by culture: HIV-infected men sleep with virgins, believing it will cure them; abused women are cowed into silence; husbands often get away with murdering their wives by burying them in back yards. Some of the children swarming Dow in the pictures are lucky to be alive. Some villages believe that killing virgin children brings prosperity. Whatever the shelter lacks in amenities—furniture, indoor latrines, stoves—it makes up for in peace of mind, Dow says. “These people now have a chance to live.”

As much as there is to lament about Uganda, Dow says there’s more to celebrate. She could talk for days and still not cover the highlights. I ask her to eat—her food’s getting cold.

But the memories keep rushing onward. No sooner does she finish one story than another comes up. Sometimes she stops in mid-narration, mentally noting a point she wants to revisit. “I’ll just bag the food,” she says, rushing back to a story.

She remembers elections in one village, where constituents literally stood behind their supporters. And the feeling of ancestral connectedness, of spiritual synchronicity with the preachers, of being at home in places like Masaka (“It looks like Boulder City”) and the very modern Kampala. Or visiting a rehabilitation center for abducted children awaiting return to their tribes. Some of them were taken from their homes at such an early age, they don’t know what their tribe is. Juxtapose their reality with that of blacks 400 years into their stay in America. “I told them that many African-Americans can’t identify our lineage,” Dow says.

Dow smiles widest recalling Ester, the 15-year-old girl she asked about her career plans “because I wanted to know what careers African girls dream about.” A lawyer, as it turns out. Boys are generally the ones with a chance to go to school (which costs $200, more than most families make in a month); since she was the oldest, Hellen Aylek got an education. “Look at what happens when women are given the opportunity,” Dow says.

The xaitress arrives to box her food.

“I took this vacation to fulfill a cause in my heart, to spread the message of God’s love and to educate people,” Dow says. “I encourage people to do this. You can volunteer anywhere in the world and you’re able to explore as well as make a difference … For me, this vacation paid off more than a trip to Cabo.”


Metro making moves to reduce gender gap

Jen Lawson Fri, Jul 8, 2005 (11:03 a.m.)


Law enforcement isn’t a traditional job for women, and Metro Police are trying to change that with the goal of boosting the number of women on the force from 9 percent to the national average of 20 percent.

“Police departments need to look like the community, gender-wise, ethnic-wise,” said Detective Tamia Dow, who works in the domestic violence detail. “To get from 9 to 20 percent is not going to happen overnight, but Cincinnati Police did it (over time). LAPD did it. We think it’s possible.”

Dow is a member of the Sheriff’s Women Recruitment Council, a group of about two dozen female Metro cops, corrections officers and civilian employees who meet monthly to discuss ways to attract women to the force and retain them once they join.

The council was formed under the previous sheriff, Jerry Keller, along with other councils focused on recruiting Hispanics, blacks and Asians. The women’s group languished for a while, but it was recently revived, and the members are infused with ideas.

A television commercial is slated to begin airing within the next few months, and a recruitment video and posters are in the works.

They also want members of the public to get involved — community leaders, businesspeople, educators, church members, anyone — to assist in recruiting women by encouraging them to choose a career in law enforcement.

“I’m telling you, they’re go-getters,” Assistant Sheriff Ray Flynn said. “They’re fired up, and I see a lot of enthusiasm and passion coming out of there.”

As a percentage, Metro has slightly fewer female officers than the North Las Vegas and Henderson police departments, who are at 13 and 11 percent, respectively. However, when it comes to Metro corrections officers who work at the Clark County Detention Center, 22 percent are women.
North Las Vegas is also trying to recruit more women, Officer Tim Bedwell, police spokesman, said.

“Chief (Mark) Paresi’s philosophy is we need to better reflect the community,” he said. “Fifty percent of the community is female, so we should at least shoot for 25 to 30 percent.”

Officer Regina Coward-Holman, chairwoman of Metro’s women’s recruitment council, said women might be hesitant to go into police work because they believe large, tough, muscular men are better suited to be cops, but she said that isn’t so. Women are better at diffusing potentially volatile situations before they turn physical.

“It’s a job that women can do. Women make better police officers in a lot of cases because we’re thinkers,” she said. “Men have to compete with each other over who is the biggest and strongest, and we don’t have that. We’re easier to get along with and more approachable.”

And, because women tend to be better listeners and communicators, they make good detectives, Dow said.

Dow always wanted to be a detective and had her sights set on the DEA or FBI. She was working as a plainclothed security officer at a department store when a Metro officer approached her and convinced her to apply at the police department, she said. Plus, Metro paid better than the federal agencies.

Female officers can be invaluable in assignments such as domestic violence, Detective Domenica Hillenbrand said. She has had victims call to report an abusive spouse and say, “Thank God you’re a female,” she said.

Hillenbrand, a mother of four, was recruited by two Metro officers who were regulars at the restaurant where she waited tables in her early 20s. She worked in vice, posing as a prostitute, and in other assignments, but fell in love with auto theft investigations.

“There’s nothing like the smell of brake fluid in the morning,” she said. “I had two girls while working auto theft investigations. … I was in labor and I was at my desk submitting cases.”

While many female officers get into policing at a young age, others, like Detective Stacy Twigg, turn to law enforcement to bring more meaning to their lives.

Twigg, who works in background investigations, spent 10 years working in the airline industry before deciding she needed a change.

“I wanted to help people,” she said.

Coward-Holman joined Metro 15 years ago as a 25-year-old single mother from a gang-infested neighborhood. She wanted to get off welfare and Metro’s benefits appealed to her.

Some in her neighborhood called her a “sell-out,” she said, but once they saw she didn’t change, she was accepted.

More women probably don’t go into law enforcement because they’re “raised softer,” Sgt. Kasey Harney said.

Harney, who has been with Metro for 13 years and works in background investigations, said being a woman works to her advantage.

“I don’t think people quite know what I’m capable of,” she said. “It can be surprising to them. Some people, when I meet them, say, ‘Oh my goodness, you’re a great role model.’ ”

Harney met with a recruiter who visited Bonanza High School, became intrigued and joined the Explorers, a program that teaches basic police procedure, then became a became cadet. She became a cop right after turning 21.

“Women can do more than they think they’re capable of,” she said. “They should be thinking, ‘I can do whatever I want to do.’ ”

The Sheriff’s Women’s Recruitment Council can be reached at 229-5601 or through Metro’s Web site, http://www.lvmpd.com.

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The Big Search is on for missing children in Las Vegas

Valarie Goff, left, and Kristel Roxas, hand out flyers with photos of missing children to Vanessa Farfan on East Sahara during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Farfan said she recognized one of the missing girls, but hadn’t seen her for a long time. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Annette Adams, right, and Wanda Ramsey hand out flyers with photos of missing to Calvin Wilson at the Fremont Street Experience during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Tamia Dow, left, a minister and former domestic violence detective with the Metropolitan Police Department, checks out a flier with photos of missing children as Doreen Bischoff, center, and Judy Hernandez look on during The Big Search campaign at the Las Vegas office of Find Restore Embrace Empower (F.R.E.E.) International Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Mike Bartel, co-founder and executive director of Find Restore Embrace Empower (F.R.E.E.) International, talks to a reporter during The Big Search campaign at the Las Vegas F.R.E.E. International office of Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Kristel Roxas, second from left, and Valarie Goff hand out flier with photos of missing children to Irvin Romero, left, and Robert Scott on East Sahara during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Valarie Goff, right, and Kristel Roxas, hand out flyers with photos of missing children to a man who gave his name as “Silent” on East Sahara during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Annette Adams, from left, Roberto Garcia and Wanda Ramsey hand out flyers with photos of missing children on East Fremont Street during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Annette Adams, right, hands out flyers with photos of missing children to a couple who declined to give their names at the Fremont Street Experience during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Wanda Ramsey, left, and Roberto Garcia, right, hand out flyers with photos of missing children to Timothy Edward, second from left, and Hector Montes at the Fremont Street Experience during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Annette Adams, right, hands out flyers with photos of missing to Michael Romeo at the Fremont Street Experience during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Annette Adams, right, hands out flyers with photos of missing to Hillary Hunt at the Fremont Street Experience during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Wanda Ramsey, from left, Roberto Garcia and Annette Adams hand out flyers with photos of missing children to a couple who declined to give their names on East Fremont Street during The Big Search campaign Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. Volunteers distributed the flyers throughout Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
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Las Vegas morning update for Tuesday, April 3 — VIDEO

By Briana Erickson Las Vegas Review-Journal
February 2, 2018 – 8:41 pm

Walking along Sahara Avenue, Valarie Goff stopped a girl in an Adidas shirt with white headphones in her ears.

“Excuse me,” she said. “We’re looking for these missing girls, if you can keep an eye out.”

The girl, Vanessa Farfan, picked up the double-sided flyer that showed four missing girls. Goff also handed her a package with 30 other missing kids.

Farfan pointed to one of the girls: 17-year-old Ryder Cornell.

“I know her,” she said. “I haven’t seen her in a while, like two years.”

Goff, a woman’s outreach coordinator with F.R.E.E. International, a human trafficking advocacy group, and they were performing The Big Search.


Friends, family remember guards killed in Las Vegas casino


As security guards at Arizona Charlie’s, LaTosha Juane White and Phillip Albert Archuleta were protectors — in and out of the casino.

They loved their families and friends in their own ways, White as a huggable guardian, Archuleta as a fun-loving prankster. White, 50, was a seasoned security officer more than 20 years; Archuleta, 28, was a year and a half into his gig.

They’re both gone now, having been gunned down Dec. 30 while on duty. But their spirits and personalities linger on in the people they touched.

Tamia Dow remembers White as her friend and “bodyguard.” When they were both students at Chaparral High School, White heard a girl say something offensive about Dow, and White pushed the offender away.

“That’s how Tosha is,” Dow said. “She was like this faithful, loyal friend and nobody could come to her and say something bad about you.”

A week after the shooting, friends and family were celebrating the security officers’ lives.

“They are the eyes and ears of Metro,” Dow, a retired police officer, said Tuesday. “They respond first.”

‘A gentle giant’

A funeral for White, who grew up in Las Vegas, was held Sunday at Unity Baptist Church. The chapel standing-room only.

Her family members, who have roots in New Orleans, wore Mardi Gras beads, played Mardi Gras music and danced as they ushered in White’s casket. She was buried in her favorite Green Bay Packers jersey, with Reggie White’s name and No. 92 on the back.
Days later, Dow remembered her friend as gregarious and humble. White had been promoted to supervisor at Arizona Charlie’s, but continued to wear the badge of the lower-ranked security guard.

Standing nearly 6 feet tall, Thomas could seem imposing, but her closest friends called her a “teddy bear” who was always cracking jokes.

“She was a gentle giant,” Dow said. “She’d hug you so tight you wanted to tap out.”

White was the second oldest of three siblings, including her brother, Bobby, and sister, Camille. She is also survived by her mother, Sandra, and father, Luther. At Chaparral High School, she was in band and played the alto saxophone. She ran for the track team, twice winning the state shot put title.

As a woman who valued family, she cherished her lifelong friendships and treated everybody’s kids as if they were her own, friends said.

In November 1987, White’s best friend since elementary school, Tanya Jervis, gave birth to a baby boy at Nellis Air Force Base. He had a tear in his heart, and his lungs were underdeveloped. He was rushed to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center.

When doctors said the baby likely wouldn’t live much longer, Jervis called White.

“Don’t worry, I’m on the way,” White told her.

There in the hospital, he was baptized. White was named his godmother.

“She was like the sister I never had,” Jervis said. “She was the watchdog, she looked over everybody. She was that special person.”

At Chaparral’s homecoming football game in October, White will be honored with a bronze nameplate, Jervis said. It will be displayed at the school’s front entrance with other plates memorializing other deceased alumni.

“She’s gone to heaven,” she said. “That’s the only place that was destined for her.”

‘He is still with us’

Om Sunday, outside Davis Funeral Homes on Eastern Avenue, Archuleta’s family wore white T-shirts bearing his photo. They prayed and shared stories of the beloved uncle, brother and father who moved to Las Vegas around five years ago from Simi Valley, California.

He was a father of two boys, John Phillip, 10, and Jayden, who turns 2 in February.

“I’ll miss his presence,” his older sister, Lisa Garcia, said Tuesday. “His funny little text messages, his jokes.”

She said that no matter what her brother was going through, he always smiled through it.

“He wanted to show everybody that he was happy,” she said. “He would go out of his way for everyone, no matter if he knew you or not. He was very selfless.”

Around five years ago, he met his girlfriend of more than three years, Anggy Guizar, at Ross Dress For Less, a clothing store where they both worked. Guizar recalled a night almost two years ago when Archuleta saw a young homeless man walking the street barefoot. Archuleta drove home, grabbed shoes, money and a water bottle and drove back to deliver them to the man.

He played blackjack and fixed cars. He called all his friends “punk,” and liked to startle them by making noises or popping from behind doors. Once, he jokingly threw water on his son John’s face to wake him up.

“He made it special,” Garcia said. “It was his own way of saying, ‘Hey, love you.’”

He was one of five brothers and sisters: Garcia, 37, Evelyn Gallegos, 33; Ricky Medrano, 32; and Joseph Archuleta, 22. When their parents died — their father from liver cancer in 2007, their mother of lymphoma shortly after — the kids stuck together.

At his memorial service, Medrano said he stayed a night at the Rio after Archuleta died.

During Medrano’s stay, he was in an elevator that traveled to the fourth floor unexpectedly. The doors opened and wouldn’t close. He pushed the button to force them closed, but they stayed open — so long that the alarm began ringing.

The incident seemed unusual, until Medrano remembered that his brother was shot on the fourth floor of Arizona Charlie’s.

“That was a sign from our brother,” Garcia said. “Showing us that he is still with us.”

Contact Briana Erickson at berickson@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5244. Follow @brianarerick on Twitter.


Friends, family remember guards killed in Las Vegas casino – Las Vegas Review-Journal

As security guards at Arizona Charlie’s, LaTosha Juane White and Phillip Albert Archuleta were protectors — in and out of the casino.

They loved their families and friends in their own ways, White as a huggable guardian, Archuleta as a fun-loving prankster. White, 50, was a seasoned security officer more than 20 years; Archuleta, 28, was a year and a half into his gig.

They’re both gone now, having been gunned down Dec. 30 while on duty. But their spirits and personalities linger on in the people they touched.

Tamia Dow remembers White as her friend and “bodyguard.” When they were both students at Chaparral High School, White heard a girl say something offensive about Dow, and White pushed the offender away.

“That’s how Tosha is,” Dow said. “She was like this faithful, loyal friend and nobody could come to her and say something bad about you.”

A week after the shooting, friends and family were celebrating the security officers’ lives.

“They are the eyes and ears of Metro,” Dow, a retired police officer, said Tuesday. “They respond first.”

‘A gentle giant’

A funeral for White, who grew up in Las Vegas, was held Sunday at Unity Baptist Church. The chapel standing-room only.

Her family members, who have roots in New Orleans, wore Mardi Gras beads, played Mardi Gras music and danced as they ushered in White’s casket. She was buried in her favorite Green Bay Packers jersey, with Reggie White’s name and No. 92 on the back.

Days later, Dow remembered her friend as gregarious and humble. White had been promoted to supervisor at Arizona Charlie’s, but continued to wear the badge of the lower-ranked security guard.

Standing nearly 6 feet tall, Thomas could seem imposing, but her closest friends called her a “teddy bear” who was always cracking.

Read More Here…


March 15th, 2018

By: Diego Perez

Through February 26 – March 2, students from Eldorado got the privilege to spend their class time with motivational speakers, entrepreneurs, businessmen, radio host, and etc. Everyone needs a wakeup call, similar to this,  to remind students they aren’t in school forever, it’s also great for people with great ambitions and great goals. The assembly proved that school isn’t always for everyone, there are always alternatives. Mr. Neal’s companion Sal Napoli started his own small car business, even though he didn’t graduate from school the passion for cars helped him get through all struggles, although he still has struggles near the winter time he knows rationalize his spending and to carefully plan his business deals. There were many different careers we could learn about along with people involved in those careers. The speakers kindly stayed after school to speak with students who were very interested.
All in all it was a privilege to have the experience and the tactics they provided for students should be put in to use, many students  stayed after to speak to the guests and many walked away with life lessons they will be forever grateful.

Chaplain Tamia Dow distributing Thin Blue Line Dog Tags to 3,000 Las Vegas Metropolitan Area Law Enforcement Officers

10579654_web1_royal_pajamas_12Joanne Nino, right, and her partner Ryan Duffield, both of Las Vegas, react while watching the royal wedding ceremony of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a Royal Pajama and Tea Party at Topgolf Las Vegas on Saturday, May 19, 2018. Andrea Cornejo Las Vegas Review-Journal @DreaCornejo
Updated May 19, 2018 – 7:00 am       

It wasn’t the wedding of the century. And it probably wasn’t even the wedding of the decade, but with a chapel full of family, friends and celebrities, the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on Saturday was like a fairy-tale dream-come-true for millions around the world.

And more than handful of people in Las Vegas were up before the crack of dawn and partied like they were royalty to celebrate the marriage of a prince to an American in what was a nontraditional ceremony by royal standards.

Dozens who gathered at Topgolf Las Vegas to watch the couple exchange vows weren’t disappointed.

Among those in attendance was Joanne Nino, a native of Leeds, England, and a 13-year Las Vegas resident.

Nino “loved” that the ceremony kept much of the tradition but veered from being a typical royal wedding. She had a viewing party when Prince William and Kate Middleton got married in 2011, but this time decided to take in the PJ party with others. And she said she was overcome with emotion when she saw the emotion on the face of Meghan Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland.

“They clearly are very much in love and I’m happy he married for love rather than for her appearance or royal expectation to marry a British debutante,” Nino said.

Tamia Dow felt the same emotion. “As a black American with biracial family members, seeing her mother touched my heart,” Dow said. “The looks on their faces say that love can conquer all.”

Dow said Americans’ fascination with the royals stems from wanting to see a prince and princess get married, and now the Duchess of Sussex is America’s princess.

Laura Covington, vice president of the Spectacular Bridal Show, was excited to see people “dressed to the 9s.” She said she sees it all the time that people in love want to have that perfect fairy-tale wedding, and she thinks Harry and Meghan pulled it off.

Nino explained that the wedding is important “because Brits love tradition and a royal wedding is the epitome of British tradition.”

 

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