HHSYC – Company History
The HIP-HOP SUMMIT YOUTH COUNCIL,
INC. ("HHSYC") was founded in 2001 by its Chairman, music industry veteran, community activist and author Charles Fisher. It is a non-profit, 501 (c) 3 tax exempt organization located in New York, New York. The HHSYC has positioned itself as an effective voice for youth on a host of issues that confront them daily. Our goal is to "change the game" by improving the image and unity within the multi-billion dollar Hip-Hop industry and use its positive influence for the empowerment of youths and young adults. Since its inception the Council has sponsored a variety of activities that support our mission:
- In August of 2001 we set the trends for Hip-Hop Summits by sponsoring the first official Hip-Hop Youth Summit at York College in Queens, New York. The event was attended by over 400 youths and provided them with a better understanding of a new movement called “Raptivism”, that would show them how to constructively use the Hip-Hop culture to improve their lives. The keynote speaker at the event was New York State Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith (D-Queens).
- In January of 2002 the HHSYC and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network sponsored the “Dream of King” Youth Summit in recognition and honor of Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. The successful event highlighted the work of Dr. King and the civil rights movement. In attendance were NAS, Russell Simmons, Dr. Ben Chavis, Rev. Run, Ed Lover, Congressman Meeks (D-Queens), New York State Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith, & NY City Councilmembers Leroy Comrie and Eric Gioia.
During the same month the HHSYC partnered with the Fresh Air Fund, which is the largest Camping organization in the Country, to expand their services to inner-city youth. As the executive director of the Camp Cool J Foundation founded by LL Cool J in 1992, Charles saw the importance of providing a free camping experience for inner-city youth to relieve them of the daily stress and chaos of urban life. Over the last several years the HHSYC has sent hundreds of kids to Camp Celebrity, Camp Mariah, Camp Tommy Hilfiger, Camp Anita Bliss Coler, Camp Hidden Valley, Camp Hayden-Marks Memorial and “Friendly Town” free of charge to enjoy a camping experience with a lifetime of memories.
- In June of 2002 the organization played a major role in organizing youth for the historical “Educational Budget Cut Rally” at City Hall in New York. The June 4, 2002 event, which got the Mayor to restore all the educational money back into the city’s budget, was sponsored by the United Federation of Teachers, the Alliance for Quality Education, and his Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. The vent attracted many celebrities, elected officials and over 100,000 participants.
- In November of 2002
the organization launched the "Hip-Hop 4 Peace" Project and a Task Force for “Gun, Prison and Drug Law reform” in honor of slain Hip-Hop legend Jam Master Jay. The HHSYC and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network sponsored a special tribute to Jam Master Jay to commemorate the one-year anniversary of his passing on October 30, 2003. The event, which was held at the Queens Library was a huge success and helped garner additional support for the “Hip-Hop 4 Peace” Project. At the request of the HHSYC a special wing of the library’s new building was dedicated to Jay in his honor.
- In November of 2002 Project Rebound was launched with the NBA's Washington Wizards and the Council of the Great City Schools (www.CGCS.org). Participants that achieve good grades and provide community service are invited to attend NBA games to meet the players and receive other incentives for academic and community achievements.
- In January of 2003 we coordinated and/or moderated a series of well-attended Hip-Hop forums for the Rev. Jesse Jackson's 5th annual Wall Street Conference and Rev. Al Sharpton's 2nd annual National Action Network Convention in April of 2003; both in New York City.
- In June of 2003 the “Countdown to Fairness” Rally was held at City Hall in New York and was sponsored by the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network and the Coalition for Fairness—in which the HHSYC is a member. The rally was held to protest the draconian Rockefeller Drug Laws. It also attracted many celebrities and elected officials drawing an estimated crowd of over 50,000 participants. The job of the HHSYC was to organize youth and young adults for the event, while educating them about the Rockefeller Drug Laws. The rally set the stage for the first reforms ever in the 31-year history of the tough Rockefeller Drug laws in August and December of 2005.
- In October of 2003 we partnered with York College of the City University of N.Y. to launch an Entertainment Business Program co-sponsored by Russell Simmons and Universal Music Group. The program offers a host of courses including: How to Start a Record Label; Audio & Video Technology; Introduction to the Music Business; and Music Marketing/Public Relations. The courses are available to students 14-21 years of age. In addition, participants enrolled in our program looking to obtain their G.E.D. can do so through York College. Those participants are then encouraged to attend the college once they receive their G.E.D.
- In January of 2004 the Youth Council’s Hip-Hop & Politics project partnered with the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network’s “Team Vote” project and with nationally syndicated Radio personality Doug Banks and his “One Mind. One Vote” campaign. Through this association we planned to register 10 million new voters by the 2008 election.
- In July of 2004 the HHSYC also helped coordinate the first Latin Hip-Hop Summit at Lehman College. The event was hosted by the Bronx Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. This historical event was a huge success and opened the door for
the creation of the Hip-Hop Summit Youth Council’s Latin Division in 2007. Jose Nino, who is the former Chairman of the United States Hispanic Chamber of commerce, is the Advisory Board Chairman for the HHSYC’s new Latin division.
- In March of 2005 the HHSYC launched the A-TEAM (Artists, Actors, Athletes, and Authors against AIDS) with film star Rosario Dawson at York College in New York to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS.
- In June of 2005 the Hip-H Summit released the King of Kings anti-drug documentary and soundtrack (www.KingofKingsDVD.com). This edgy docu-drama tells the story of a notorious drug family and the cartel they operated for over 23 years. The project talks about the role the family played in the “War on Drugs” and the launching of the TNT taskforce Nationwide by the government after the shooting of a Rookie New York City Police officer. The film and soundtrack educates youths about the importance of education and the dangers of Drugs, Guns and Gang Violence. The drug kingpins, who just returned from prison and are the centerpiece of the project, are now speaking to youths about the consequences of selling and using drugs.
- In October of 2005
the HHSYC was selected as the Model Program for the Country by
the Organizing Committee of the Millions More Movement.
The event was a huge success and was attended by over one
As one of
the speakers Charles was able to unveil the program to those
in attendance and millions of others via C-SPAN. Randy
garnered support for HHSYC from Jadakiss of the L.O.X., Wyclef
Jean, Rev .Al Sharpton and Rev. Jesse Jackson.
- In April of 2006 the HHSYC partnered with several United Nations Agencies and their affiliates, including the World Sports Alliance, to launch the “Hip-Hop 4 Peace” project worldwide through the Hip-Hop 4 Peace Benefit Album and Documentary. In addition they have also launched the Rebuilding Africa Project (R.A.P), which was created to improve the quality of life for young people in Africa’s 54 countries. Both the CD and DVD will raise funds to support the United Nations Millennium Development Goals; the International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World; the USO and several humanitarian causes around the world conducted by UN agencies and their affiliate groups.
- In June of 2006 the HHSYC partnered with the Warner Music Group and Bad Boy records to help launch a National School tour for Yung Joc, Cassie and Diddy. The purpose of the tour was to use Bad Boy artists to enlighten students on the importance of education, graduation and the vices that destroy young lives.
- In July of 2006 the HHSYC launched the “Stars 4 the Yards” campaign with Nets owner Bruce Ratner, Jason Kidd, Vince Carter, Blue Magic, the Persuaders, Roberta Flack, former NBA players Darryl Dawkins & Albert King, Bertha Lewis of Acorn, Rev. Herbert Daughtry and many others in support of the building of the Nets stadium in Brooklyn, affordable housing, community programs for youth and employment for minorities.
- In January of 2007 our Latin Division sponsored its first Three Kings Day Celebration for over 300 youths providing them with food, games, toys and entertainment. The very successful event was attended by the Bronx Boro President
Adolfo Carrion, Councilman Miguel Martinez, Senator Eric Schneiderman, Dr. Ben Chavis, rapper Cuban Links and others.
- In February of 2007 the HHSYC launched the “Display of Power” literacy initiative with FUBU founder and CEO Daymond John, who just released his Autobiography “Display of Power.” The purpose of the project, which has partnered with several bookstores and libraries, is to use Authors and celebrities to promote the importance of Literacy and Academic Success.
- In June of 2007 the
HHSYC launched the Hip-Hop Touchdown 4 Success project at the Law Enforcement High School for Public Safety with Green Bay Packer Fullback Brandon Miree. The purpose of the project is to use Sports and Music to help students achieve their academic and personal goals. In the same month we launched the Hip-Hop 4 Peace National tour during the 2007 Black Expo at the Jacob Javits Center in New York. The tour will now visit other cities bringing a positive message that will help our youth and young adults hurdle the many obstacle they are confronted with daily by addressing Poverty, a failing education system, and the Prison Industrial complex.
- In August of 2007
the HHSYC co-sponsored the 4th Annual Youth Assembly at the United Nations with the Friendship Ambassadors Foundation and Dr. Elaine Valdov, Secretary General of the United Nations Youth Assembly. The event provided Leadership Training for over 700 youths from 87 countries.
HHSYC also officially launched their Hip-Hop 4 the Millennium Development Goals Project, which will work with several UN agencies to address a host of issues that affect the quality of life for our youths and young adults worldwide.
- In October of 2007 the HHSYC partnered with the United Nations Millennium Campaign to use the clout of the Hip-Hop Community to increase awareness worldwide about the “Stand Up & Speak Out” Against Poverty initiative, as well as the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDG's). Through this project citizens were enlightened on how they can get their government to reduce poverty and honor their commitment to address the MDG's by the year 2015. In 2000 the MDG's were signed by leaders from 189 countries with the intent to halve extreme poverty by 2015. Thanks in part to the Hip-Hop community we were able to break the 2006 Guinness World Record of 23.5 million by registering 43.7 million in 2007. Over the next seven years we will be working with several United Nations agencies, celebrities, elected officials, world and business leaders to address the eight MDG's which are to: Eradicate Poverty and Hunger; Achieve Universal Primary Education; Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women; Reduce Child Mortality; Improve Maternal Health; Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and other diseases; Ensure Environment Sustainability; and Develop a Global Partnership for Development.
- January 2008 – After last year’s launch of the Hip-Hop Summit Youth Council’s (HHSYC) LATIN
DIVISION the organization followed up its initial
success by hosting its 2nd annual Three Kings Day
celebration in recognition of this important day in the Latin
Community. The event, which was a huge success thanks to our
Latin Division Director Michele Garcia, was held at the De Ja
Vu Lounge in the Bronx. Over 500 youths were in attendance to
enjoy performances and free gifts donated by sponsors such as
FUBU, USADrugPlan.com, KJR Sales, Mah’s Muzik, Dominoes Pizza,
the NYPD Benevolence Association, NYC Commissioner Linares &
the offices of the Bronx BP Carrion, Councilman Martinez and
Senator Schneiderman. The Latino Division is committed to
teaching participants how to constructively use their time,
talent and the Hip-Hop Culture to improve social, political
and economic conditions in their school, home and community.
The keynote speaker representing the Mayor of the City of New
York was Commissioner Linares.
- February 2008 – In an effort to educate our youths and young adults how to constructively use Hip-Hop as a vehicle
for Social, Political and Economic Empowerment the Hip-Hop
Summit Youth Council, Inc. and the NYS Association of Black
and Puerto Rican Legislators, Inc. (NYSABPRL) launched “Youth
Empowerment Day” at the 37th Annual Legislative
Conference Weekend. The “Hip-Hop, Politics and Economics”
Youth Summit was attended by notables such as Hip-Hop Icon
Slick Rick, Senate Democratic Minority Leader Malcolm A. Smith,
Assemblyman Carl E. Heastie, Senator Antoine M. Thompson,
Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries, Senator Shirley Huntley,
Assemblyman William Scarborough, Dr. Divine Pryor, Tameka
Malloy, Tyrone McCray, Donovan Richards, DJ Baby Bear and over
400 youths. How to get ‘To the Top with Hip-Hop’ was
the theme of the Youth Summit. The issue that was heavily
debated was the 2.8 billion dollars of New York States Pension
Fund money invested in 16 entertainment companies, with some
of them supporting “Gangster Rap” and music that
degrades our women.
To lighten up the day we also
sponsored the “Time 2 Shine” Talent Search began.
Contestants danced, sang, read poetry, rapped and even acted
out scenes for the possibility
of acquiring a major recording contract or a chance to receive
a walk-on role in a video or film.
As a result of their fine work the Youth Council continues to receive numerous honors for its work including proclamations and awards from: U.S. Congressional Representatives Tom DeLay (Majority Leader TX), Gregory Meeks (NY) and Henry Howard (GA); Senator Sam Brownback (KS); NYS
Senate Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith; NYC Council member Leroy Comrie; the NYS Assembly; NY City Council; Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin; and Dekalb County, GA CEO Vernon Jones. We’ve also received proclamations from the Mayor of Hartford, CT and in Philadelphia, PA and HHSYC was granted the Liberty Bell by Philly Mayor John Street. The organization has received local, national and international news coverage for their work from numerous broadcast, print, and online news outlets including: The Associated Press, Fox News Channel, BBC Global News Radio, the Canadian Broadcast Network ("CBC"), NY1 News, WCBS News Channel 2, WNBC News Channel 4, Fox 5 News, WABC News Channel 7, UPN-9 News, WB-11 News, BET News, MTV & MTV2, VH-1, The Christian Science Monitor, Billboard Magazine, Vibe Magazine, XXL Magazine, Source Magazine, F.E.D.S. Magazine, HITS, New York Newsday, NY Daily News, New York Post, New York Amsterdam News, the New Voice of NY, Caribbean Life, the LA Times, 4 Korners, Y2G.com, MTV.com, AllHipHop.com, SOHH.com, CNN.com, RollingStone.com, radio stations 1010 WINS, WWRL, WCBS NEWSRADIO 88, HOT-97 FM RADIO, Jamaica Times, Southeast Queens Press, Queens Chronicle, Queens Courier,
Chelsea Now and others.
“Launching a Movement for Unity & Improvement”