Fil-Am writer Randy Gener receives award for ‘meritorious community service’
Randy Gener, the prominent editor-writer-artist, who has been published in The New York Times, Village Voice, and American Theatre magazine, has earned a New York’s Nubian Union Legend Award at a “Chasing Stars” Holiday Gala in Greenwich Village.
After surviving a deadly assault in 2014, Randy Gener is now an advocate for young minority men suffering from traumatic head and brain injuries. The FilAm photo
The Nubian Union Legend award was presented to Gener and other honorees for “outstanding leadership and meritorious community service.” Recipients of this unique award “exemplify unconditional sacrifice and service to the communities that they serve, and they stand as icons of stewardship to everyone.”
“After reading about his story, Randy was one of our first picks,” said Clark Everson, president of Unity Missionary Investors, adding that Gener is “deserving of our award.”
The Nubian Union is composed of two urban advocacy non-profit organizations focused on the alarming increase of brain injuries, especially among minority youth: Unity Missionary Investors, which aids economically-challenged communities with tools and programs; and the Nubian Cultural Center for Research & Development, a multigenerational program that promotes racial and ethnic harmony through cultural exchange and education.
The “Chasing Stars” Holiday Gala featured a host of clergy, celebrities and community leaders. Other honorees were Dr. William Gibbs of Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn; China Flowers, fashion and media specialist; Prof. Richard Alston, renowned concert pianist; and Nadege Dady, Dean of Student Affairs at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine Harlem.
During the gala evening, Gener recounted his personal experience of being the unsuspecting target of a deadly assault in early 2014.
On January 2014, Gener was bloodily assaulted after coming from the Broadway theater district. He said he was attacked because of his identity as an Asian American and an openly gay man. The police have ruled out the assault as a hate crime. Charges were filed against a Queens man.
Gener is the proprietor of In the Culture of One World (cultureofoneworld.org), a live event and media project. A former Village Voice critic and until recently the senior editor of American Theatre magazine, Gener is a decorated arts and culture editor of his generation. He is TCG’s first American Theatre staff editor — and the only Asian American — to earn the legendary George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism selected by the English and theater departments of Yale, Princeton and Cornell universities.
The Nathan Award, which has been given annually since 1958, is the richest as well as one of the most distinguished in the American theater. The prize goes “to the American who has written the best piece of drama criticism during the theatrical year (July 1 to June 30), whether it is an article, an essay, treatise or book.”
Gener played a major role in a 2013 social-media effort and petition campaign, signed by 2,700 people on change.org. The adventurous Cuban-born playwright and director María Irene Fornés, 82, who has had Alzheimer’s disease for more than a decade, had been left abandoned in another facility in upstate New York. The campaign successfully transferred Fornés to Amsterdam House nursing home, where she has gained better spirits.
Gener was the recipient of a Philippine Presidential Award in 2010. President Benigno Aquino III conferred the award on Gener and nine others at the Malacanang Presidential Palace.
“Concussion, starring Will Smith,” says Gener, “is a rare Hollywood feature film which deals with the life-threatening dangers of playing football. But it’s not just professional athletes who suffer concussions. They can occur anywhere, and most head injuries happen to regular people in living their lives. Hate crimes randomly happen in New York City. Head injuries are significant and cannot be ignored.”
Proceeds for the Nubian Union’s gala will benefit The Anthony Fund, a nonprofit advocacy program created by Unity Missionary Investors to educate the public and bring greater awareness to the increasing numbers of young minority men suffering from head injuries, concussions, and traumatic brain injuries.
Gener will advocate for giving urgent support and access-to-resources to urban minority youth who have been violently injured. —The FilAm