ED HOWARD’S LIFE STORY PART (7)
ED HOWARD RESIGNS FROM KAISER ENGINEERS AND GOES INTO BUSINESS FOR HIMSELF
In the latter part of 1969, seeing an opportunity to broaden my positive influence and to help more communities across the United States, I resigned from Kaiser Engineers and joined my brother, Ernest, to become the Vice President for our company, Social Dynamics Consultants and Associates, Inc. (SDI).
Social Dynamics, Inc. provided technical training for grassroots’ residents in various neighborhood groups across the United States. Over time our business had offices in Berkeley, California; Washington, D.C.; and Kansas City, Kansas. Although the original emphasis was on the manpower services and the provision of training, technical assistance and evaluation services, SDI expanded its capability to include skills delivery in the fields of education, economic development, health, career development, and business management services.We maintained a complement of highly trained and skillful specialists in each of those fields, and their skills were augmented by a cadre of intermittent consultants who were available to meet special technical requirements when unusual needs arose.
Unfortunately, as government contracts became more difficult to come by, SDI eventually closed down and I was faced with deciding on what area I could next apply my passion helping others while doing something challenging. Some Of the Black Oakland Elders who worked for us at (SDI) before they became successful was R. I. P. Congressman/ Mayor Ron Dellums, R. I. P. Judge Henry Ramsey and Attorney John Burris.
While at SDI I had also ventured out and created Ed Howard Productions during the time I had produced Black Dignity TV show because I was exposed to the technical inter working of the TV station.
When I was shown the TV station’s Master Control room with all its monitors and cameras it was easy for me to understand the technology because when I was hired at Kaiser Engineers I was placed in the elite engineering group called “Instrumentations”. Our group was responsible for designing the Master Control Rooms for Industrial Processing Plants all over the world. My first production using TV cameras, monitors and all the wiring to connect everything was not an easy task. Also, to find the equipment and Black people with capabilities in this infant technology was not easy.
My first production completely produced with my money was a Talent show at Berkeley Community Theater. I can say I probably was an independent Black Oakland and Bay Area pioneer in creating a Black video crew videotaping my own production outside of a TV station back in 1970.
Friends, I hope you enjoyed the first six posts our series detailing the life of Oakland original pioneer, film maker, engineer, TV host, night club owner–just to name a few titles–Mr. Ed Howard. Be sure check out the West Oakland Stories short historical film, as well as the brief documentary “Between Black & White” detailing the historical alliances between Greek & Black communities. Both videos are not to be missed! Among one another, let’s put the No Negative Speak movement into practice. In the first half of our seventh segment, Mr. Howard reminisces about his adventures as a rising entrepreneur with his company Social Dynamics Consultants and Associates, Inc.
Here are a few photographs of my technical crew at work videotaping the talent show.
Photo 1: Talent show at the Berkeley Community Theater in 1972
Photos 2-5: Scenes from Ed Howard’s Production.
Photo 6: Mr. Ed Howard, present day. An Oakland original.STAY TUNED:
ED HOWARD PRODUCTIONS COMPANY CONTINUES IN THE COMING 8TH SEGMENT.
EHP Produced and directed the filming of Congressman Ron Dellums Life Story 1970 -71.
EHP Produced the videotaping of Oakland Black Night Club Life 1971-72.
Follow Ed Howard’s story! Click the link for episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6A & 6B and 7: www.westoaklandstories.org
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