June 14, 2012
Crystal Barnes, formerly Director of Industry Relations, was named Vice President of Industry Relations for Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and insights, effective immediately. In her role, Barnes is responsible for expanding the reach of Nielsen’s thought leadership efforts across the media and consumer industries, focusing on the increasingly diverse and connected consumer.
Barnes began at Nielsen in 2004 as part of the company’s Emerging Leaders Program (ELP). As an Emerging Leader Associate, she was exposed to various industries and expertise across the company. Upon completion of the program, Barnes worked in public affairs and was instrumental in the expansion of Nielsen’s multicultural outreach efforts, strengthening the company’s communications and public affairs program.
Since her appointment to the industry relations position, she has developed and managed strategic alliances with industry and business associations within the global business community. Barnes applies significant strategic and tactical skills to expand and transform the company's position in the industry, both with traditional and new associations in the digital space.
Prior to joining Nielsen, Barnes held production and communications positions at WHP, a CBS affiliate in Harrisburg, Penn. and Comcast SportsNet in Bethesda, MD. A native of Pennsylvania, she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Broadcast Telecommunications and Mass Media from Temple University.
July 12, 2012
By CAIN BURDEAU | Associated Press
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The mother of Trayvon Martin says she was disappointed by a Florida judge’s decision to give George Zimmerman another chance at posting bond and leaving prison before trial.
A judge granted Zimmerman bond Thursday for a second time, setting it at $1 million. His previous $150,000 bond was revoked after prosecutors presented evidence that he had misled the court about his finances. Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder in Martin's death.
Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, spoke Friday at a news conference with the Rev. Al Sharpton. She says that knowing her son’s killer “may walk free sometime, one day, it really hurts.”
December 05, 2013
By DENISE LAVOIE
BOSTON (AP) — President Barack Obama’s Kenyan-born uncle, who ignored a deportation order more than two decades ago, on Tuesday was granted permission to stay in the United States.
Judge Leonard Shapiro made the decision after Onyango Obama, 69, testified that he had lived in the U.S. for 50 years, been a hard worker, paid income tax and been arrested only once.
Asked about his family in the U.S., he said he has a sister and two nieces, then added, “I do have a nephew.” Asked to name the nephew, he said, “Barack Obama,” then added, “He’s the president of the United States.”
Onyango Obama, the half brother of the president’s late father, testified he has lived in the U.S. since 1963, when he entered on a student visa. He had a series of immigration hearings in the 1980s and was ordered to leave the country in 1992 but remained.
During his testimony, he identified himself as Obama Okech Onyango. Court records and authorities have identified him as Onyango Obama, and no explanation was given for the discrepancy.
Obama told the judge he had led a quiet, simple life, graduating from high school in Cambridge, then attending Boston University, where he received a degree in philosophy. He said he has worked for years as a manager at a family-owned liquor store in Framingham, just west of Boston. He also said he has worked for decades to help African immigrants find housing and settle in the U.S.
The judge, while announcing his decision, cited a law that entitles immigrants who are “out of status” to become permanent residents if they arrived in the U.S. before 1972, maintained continuous residence and are of good moral character.
Obama testified he hasn’t been back to Kenya since he entered the U.S. and said it would be difficult for him to return after all these years.
“Mr. Judge, America is a land of opportunities, a land of chances,” he said in a thick accent.
His immigration status didn’t become public until his 2011 drunken-driving arrest in Framingham. Police said after the arrest he told them, “I think I will call the White House.”
Asked about the exchange by a prosecutor on Tuesday, he said he might have said that but couldn’t recall.
The charge was dismissed after he completed a year of probation and 14 weeks of alcohol education classes.
The judge said he considered testimony about Obama’s character, including letters from people who praised him for being a “kind and decent person,” and considered the drunken-driving charge and allegations of discrepancies in what he told immigration officials 20 to 30 years ago.
“He appears to me to be a gentleman,” the judge said.
Obama testified that President Obama stayed with him for three weeks in Cambridge while the president was a student at Harvard Law School.
“In our tradition, your brother’s kids are your kids as well,” he said after the hearing.
Onyango Obama’s Cleveland-based immigration attorney, Margaret Wong, called him a “wonderful older gentleman.”
“He has earned his privilege to stay in the United States. He has been here for 50 years,” she said.
After the hearing, Obama quickly left the courthouse without speaking. Wong said he didn't receive any special treatment and was happy with the judge's decision.
If the government appeals, a notice must be filed within 30 days. Wong said Obama could get U.S. citizenship after five years.
The White House had said it expected the case to be handled like any other.
In the president’s memoir, “Dreams from My Father,” he writes about his 1988 trip to Kenya and refers to an Uncle Omar, who matches Onyango Obama’s background and has the same date of birth.
Onyango Obama is the second Obama family member to be found living illegally in the United States. His sister, Zeituni Onyango, the president’s aunt, was granted asylum in 2010 after her first asylum request in 2002 was rejected and she was ordered deported in 2004.
Onyango didn’t leave the country and continued to live in public housing in Boston. Her status was revealed just days before Barack Obama was elected in November 2008. At the time, then-candidate Obama said he didn’t know his aunt was living in the U.S. illegally and he believed laws covering the situation should be followed.
December 05, 2013
By Jason Straziuso
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Only four months after a raging fire engulfed the arrivals terminal at Kenya’s main airport, Kenya’s president on Tuesday broke ground on new construction that officials hope will cement the country as East Africa’s transportation leader.
President Uhuru Kenyatta said the goal is to make Jomo Kenyatta International Airport one of the world's leading air terminals. The revamped airport will serve 20 million passengers a year, up from 6.5 million passengers currently. Construction on the new $635 million terminal is expected to last until 2017.
In August a small fire at the Nairobi airport swelled into a roaring inferno that destroyed the arrivals terminal. Firefighters were desperately short of equipment and crews took hours to control the flames. Kenyatta said the fire, which was caused by an electrical fault, “threatened our vision” of Nairobi’s airport being the gateway to Africa.
Tourism fuels Kenya's economy. The country’s safari parks and white-sand beaches beckon more than a million tourists per year, with most coming from the U.K. and the U.S.
Nairobi’s airport is far bigger than any other in the region, but the cement structure is old, cramped and uncomfortable. Passengers are often made to walk across a busy tarmac to board their plane, one of the reasons the United States does not allow direct flights from Kenya.
Aly-Khan Satchu, who once ran the global trading desks in emerging markets for Credit Suisse First Boston and now runs his own financial management business in Nairobi, said Kenya must cement its position as a transportation hub by laying more infrastructure groundwork. With the new airport terminal, Kenya is making a play to be the Africa-Asia transit hub, he said.
“All the U.S. multinationals setting up shop here like Kenya Airway’s routes into other African countries,” Satchu said. “But if Kenya Airways is going to be an airline leader it has to have a first class airport. The airport experience now is just so awful.”
During Tuesday’s groundbreaking, Kenyatta noted that airports boost economic growth and give tourists and businessmen a first impression of the country, and can thus influence foreign direct investment.
Kenya in recent days also launched a multi-billion-dollar railway project to link its port city of Mombasa with Nairobi, a line that will run on to Uganda and possibly Rwanda and South Sudan.
Both transportation projects are being financed largely with Chinese money. Kenyatta on Tuesday thanked the African Development Bank, the World Bank, the European Investment Bank and China, the only nation he singled out individually.
Construction projects in Kenya are prone to costly delays and corruption. Kenyatta urged project managers to overcome those hurdles.