June 8, 2021
BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF GREATER KANSAS CITY ANNOUNCES 2021 ALUMNI HALL OF FAME HONOREES
Kansas City, Mo — Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City announces three distinguished honorees as the latest members of the Clubs’ Alumni Hall of Fame. The honorees include Alvin Brooks, Shalonn “Kiki” Curls, and Robert Firnhaber.
“We are proud to recognize another group of outstanding Club alumni for this 2021 class,” said Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City President and CEO, Dr. Dred Scott. “For more than 105 years, the Clubs have had a positive impact on a countless number of children in our community. “It is important to us that we honor individuals who, through the gift of their time and talent, are a true inspiration for our Boys & Girls Club youth, making it clear that they can accomplish their dreams. We are extremely proud of and grateful for our alumni and friends.”
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City Alumni Hall of Fame program serves to recognize, preserve, and honor the century-long legacy of the Clubs. The Hall of Fame’s mission is to recognize contributions embodied in the Boys & Girls Clubs’ motto: “Great Futures Start Here.” Inductees are former members or volunteers of Boys Club, Boys & Girls Clubs, or any of its affiliates who have made positive contributions to youth and the community and achieved success in their careers. More information on this year’s inductees:
Alvin Brooks, author of the recently published book Binding Us Together, is a former Kansas City police officer, councilman, and mayor pro-tem and the founder of the community organization AdHoc Group Against Crime. Brooks joined the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City’s board of directors in 1968. His decades of civil rights, violence prevention, and criminal justice advocacy led President George H. W. Bush to appoint him to the President’s National Drug Advisory Council and Governor Jay Nixon to appoint him to the Kansas City Board of Police Commissioners. Brooks has also worked as a business consultant, motivational speaker, and lecturer, conducting hundreds of seminars about cultural/racial diversity, religious tolerance, and civil rights. He recently was named the 2019 Kansas Citian of the Year by the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, and he’s a recipient of the Harry S. Truman Award for Public Service. Brooks currently lives in Kansas City among family and friends.
As a child, former Senator Shalonn “Kiki” Curls was an active member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City’s Thornberry Unit. She currently serves as Commissioner for Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. She was appointed by Governor Mike Parson in January of 2020. Just prior to her appointment, she served 14 years in the Missouri Legislature; 10 years as State Senator for the 9th District in Kansas City and four years in the Missouri House of Representatives.
During her tenure in the Missouri Senate, Senator Curls worked tirelessly on issues regarding economic development, affordable housing, quality healthcare, criminal justice reform, and education. Her ability to build consensus on both sides of the aisle allowed her to be an effective negotiator for significant pieces of legislation throughout her career and allowed the allocation of millions of dollars for worthwhile programs and initiatives throughout the State.
Senator Curls served in a number of leadership roles while serving in the state Senate. She served as Assistant Democratic Floor Leader (2013-2015, 2017-2020) and Democratic Caucus Chair (2015-2017); as well as serving as Ranking Member for a number of Statutory Committees, including Senate Budget Appropriations, Gubernatorial Appointments, Infrastructure & Public Safety, Agriculture, Small Business and Insurance.
Prior to her legislative duties, Senator Curls worked in real estate development and served over 20 years as 14th Ward Democratic Committeewoman in Kansas City. She is a graduate of St. Teresa’s Academy in Kansas City and the University of Missouri-Columbia. She is the proud mother of twins James and Michaela.
Robert (Bob) Firnhaber grew up in the Milwaukee suburb of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. He is a 1957 graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Firnhaber held short stints with the U.S. Army and the Edsel Division of Ford Motor Company before joining Hallmark Cards, Inc. in October 1958. With Hallmark, Firnhaber spent 14 years in the field sales force as a salesman, District Manager, and Regional Manager before relocating to Kansas City in 1972 as Marketing Manager for Hallmark brand greeting card lines. In 1995, following several promotions to roles of increasing responsibility, Firnhaber was named President, Hallmark Marketing Corporation, responsible for sales and retail for all Hallmark brands in North America. Firnhaber retired from Hallmark in 1998.
Firnhaber worked and volunteered in the non-profit sector for many years. He was a member of the board of 18th & Vine Authority and Marketing Committee chairman for American Jazz Museum, a member and past president of the board of trustees of the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, and a current ex-officio board member and past board chairman of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City
For more than 105 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City has provided youth, ages 5-18, a fun and safe environment to learn, play, meet new friends and grow — with special emphasis on youth from disadvantaged circumstances. From sports, digital arts, and media to group activities and tutoring, the Clubs provide caring adult mentors, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours.
Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character, citizenship, and healthy lifestyles to more than 1,000 area youth each day. Whether it is learning how an individual can make a difference in his/her community or learning how to swim – the Clubs strive to help youth feel important and put their dreams of a Great Future within reach.
More information about Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City can be found online at www.helpKCkids.org and www.facebook.com/helpkckids.
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FOR IMMEDATE RELEASE: December 19, 2022 MEDIA CONTACT: Sharon Cleaver at email@example.com or 816-462-0136