In response to this summer’s Black Lives Matter protests and demonstrations, Schneps Media, under co-publisher Victoria Schneps, launched a campaign to put a voice to uncover systemic racism that exists for the Black and brown population in New York City.
Schneps Media’s “Your Voice, Your Viewpoint” campaign invited students ranging from eighth grade through college to submit essays, poems, videos, and TikToks on the topic.
Peter Klein, president of the Claire Friedlander Foundation, awarded a $15,000 grant to Queensborough Community College to help encourage students to submit their stories.
Klein, who is also the Chief Investment Officer and Founder of Aline Wealth (Melville, NY) and author of two books (Getting Started in Security Analysis, 1998, 2009; A Passion For Giving: Tools And Inspiration For Creating A Charitable Foundation, 2012), said he felt compelled to help launch the “Your Voice, Your Viewpoint” campaign.
“Throughout my financial services career, I understand the impact, influence, and importance of the written word,” Klein said.
For many years, Klein served as an investment advisor for the late Claire Friedlander, a Holocaust survivor who immigrated to New York and became blessed with wealth. She established the foundation and asked Klein to advocate for her beliefs.
“Civil rights, human rights, eliminating intolerance, prejudice, racism, bias, and stereotyping were important issues to Claire,” Klein said. “She inspired people, especially students, to stand up, speak out, engaging in freedom of expression — rights taken away from many during the Holocaust.”
Klein said he believes that the Claire Friedlander Foundation’s partnership with Schneps Media and Queensborough Community College for the “Your Voice, Your Viewpoint” campaign can “energize citizens to become drivers of positive social change in their communities.”
“We have the ingredients, including a vital college campus which can attract students and a prominent media platform which can spread communication and dialogue on these issues,” Klein added.
The winning entries were selected by a panel of Queensborough Community College students, with a $500 prize given to each winner.
The winners of the “Your Voice, Your Viewpoint” campaign are:
Name: Skyla Chim
School: Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74
Name: Zoe Chuang
School: JHS 190
Student: Violetta King
Central Park East High School
Student: Joshua Mercado
Age: 15 years old
School: La Salle Academy
Panel’s Honorable Mention
Student: Luke Eckstein
School: Kingsborough Community College
Video Submission (“The Invisible Man”)
Student: Mekhi Hewling
School: Curtis High School on Staten Island
Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.