Pat Prescott (courtesy file)

Pat Prescott, the esteemed broadcaster, will serve as mistress of ceremonies for Bakewell Media’s salute to Black women leaders and the 90th anniversary of the Sentinel on Saturday, April 15, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.  

 The celebration, “Power, Leadership, and Influence of the Black Woman,” was conceived by Danny J. Bakewell, Sr., chairman of Bakewell Media, as a salute to the Black women whose tireless efforts have made the Los Angeles community stronger through their leadership and advocacy. 

 “Black Women have played an instrumental part in the fabric of our community and certainly in my life. Taking time out to honor these women is not only fitting but necessary,” Bakewell said.  

“Our honorees have dedicated their lives towards making life better for Black people, both here, in Los Angeles, and throughout this nation.” Each honoree is a “driving force,” using their power, leadership, and professional skills for the “betterment of our people.” 

Prescott recognizes the specialness of the upcoming celebration: “Events like these are special for two reasons. First, they give well-deserved acknowledgment of the considerable contributions these women have made to our community. They also spotlight individuals who are excellent role models for young girls who look like them.”  

Pat Harvey, an anchor with CBS 2 and National Black Journalist Hall of Fame inductee, will moderate the conversation with distinguished honoree, Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass. Bass will share the spotlight with fellow honorees Dr. Elaine Batchlor, CEO of Martin Luther King Jr., Community Healthcare; Jacquelyn Dupont-Walker, president of Ward Economic Development Corporation; Sandra Evers-Manly, president of the Black Hollywood Education and Resource Corporation (BHERC); and Stephanie N. Wiggins, CEO of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 

The event will also celebrate the 90th Anniversary of the Los Angeles Sentinel. Many print newspapers have come and gone; however, the Sentinel remains a trusted media resource, continuing the vision of current owner Danny J. Bakewell Sr.  

Before the advent of social platforms, Bakewell envisioned a media outlet that would always use its voice to cover stories that uplift and inform the Black community. The Sentinel, he intended, would showcase Black excellence and spotlight issues that other news outlets might not cover, issues relevant and necessary to the culture.  

It is a mission that preeminent journalist Pat Prescott understands. 

“To survive and thrive for 90 years is an astonishing accomplishment. The Sentinel is the heartbeat of Black L.A., keeping our community informed, entertained, and inspired. Today, 90 years since its founding, it is more essential to our community’s survival than ever. The Bakewell family and all the others who have contributed to the paper’s success have much to be proud of,” she said.  

Prescott, the former morning host of  KTWV-FM 94.7 “The Wave,” is one of those instrumental pieces of the fabric of the Los Angeles community. Prescott’s captivating voice and warm personality endeared her to thousands that listened to her show on their morning drive. Prescott spent over 20 years at “The Wave” and proudly said she loved talking for a living.  

A native of Hampton, Virginia, Prescott graduated from Northwestern University and began her professional career as a schoolteacher. Her path would take her to New Orleans, where she started her radio career at WYLD-FM and then WNOE, the legendary rock station. Soon the bright lights of New York would call, and Prescott landed at the former heritage jazz station WRVR. Prescott’s voice would also grace the airways at WBLS, WLIB, The National Black News Network, and CD 101.9. 

In 2001, jazz saxophonist Dave Koz persuaded her to move to the City of Angels, and soon, Angelenos were in love with Prescott, and the rest is HERtory. After retiring from “The Wave,” Prescott returned to the New York airwaves as host of “My Favorite Things” on Newark Public Radio “Jazz 88” WBGO. 

“To be asked to host this luncheon is especially meaningful since I recently retired. It’s an honor to contribute, and since I know all these women very well and have a great deal of respect for them, it feels even more special,” Prescott said.