Monday, October 31, 2011
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
ON GIL NOBLE: THE BEST OF THE BEST AMONG US
by Eric V. Tait, Jr.
The greatest accolade I know to bestow on Gil Noble, the highest tribute, is the one Blacks once used to define a man whose every fibre was always focused and dedicated to the betterment of his people: A Race Man.
No matter what I asked of Gil—a family day dedication/celebration at the small, off-the-beaten-path AC-BAW Art Gallery in Mt. Vernon, New York in the early-Seventies, an appearance on one of our early NYABJ Media Watch Shows in the mid-Nineties, or the high-profile One-on-One with Harry Belafonte for the Black Documentary Collective at the Apollo Sound Stage and the CUP Award presentation to Ambassador Dudley Thompson just a few years ago, Gil Noble was always there. He always delivered on his personal commitment to and for his people.
That he has done so unflaggingly, on that very public, highest professional level of his own Show, LIKE IT IS, probably the longest running Public Affairs Show on commercial television in this country (and maybe the world) since the 1960s, and no doubt quietly, behind-the-scenes for most of his life, is a tribute to him, his family, and the people he comes from. I am most grateful to them, and also thankful that organizations to which I belong—the New York Association of Black Journalists (NYABJ) and the Harlem Preservation Foundation (HPF)--- had the foresight to publically recognize his inestimable value and contributions by honoring him with their highest Awards.
Despite the battles he’s had to fight to maintain the On-Air presence of LIKE IT IS—because of his unfailing integrity and willingness to speak truth to power--Gil Noble has been an amazing, dedicated torch-bearer: positively enlightening, affirming and guiding us through the negative legacy of Slavery, through the discrimination, the criminal, social and economic injustices we’ve battled for 400 years in this country and around the globe.
He has been our modern day David Ruggles, Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Martin Delany, Ida B. Wells and Thurgood Marshall all rolled into one. The world needs to know, understand and appreciate his sacrifices and contributions.
He could not have been more fittingly named: Gil is one Noble individual, and the world is so much the better for his existence. I’m blessed to have had the privilege of knowing, working and collaborating with him personally and professionally. My love and prayers are with him and his family.
ERIC V. TAIT, JR. is president of EVT Educational Productions, Inc. and Co-Chair of NYABJ Media Watch