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Bmore Social: Reginald F. Lewis Museum Gala: A Royal Affair 

A visual recap of the museum fundraiser, which paid homage to the Pennsylvania Avenue Black Arts and Entertainment District this year.
By Sloane Brown

The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of African American History and Culture 2024 Gala: A Royal Affair
May 9, 2024
6:30–11 p.m.
M&T Bank Exchange at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center 

This year, the “Royal Affair” theme of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture gala paid homage to Baltimore’s Pennsylvania Avenue Black Arts and Entertainment District—famously home to the iconic Royal Theatre—and its beginnings as a hub for Black arts and culture in the early to mid 1900s. 

The M&T Bank Exchange glittered in crystal and gold deco-style decor. More than 300 guests only added to the air of elegance, arriving in everything from feathers to furs. The evening—which included cocktails, dinner, awards and performances—ended on a high note, raising the royal sum of $260,000 for the museum.  

Left to right: Terri Lee Freeman, Lewis Museum president; Drew Hawkins, Lewis Museum board chair/Edyoucore president/CEO
Left to right: Dr. Robert F. Draper, retired orthopedic surgeon; Wanda Draper, retired Lewis Museum executive director; Marty King, Lewis Museum board treasurer/Gorman & Williams attorney; Dr. Tracy King, dentist
Left to right: Keiffer J. Mitchell, Jr., BGR Group vice president; Jean Fugett, Jr., Reginald Lewis’ brother/Lewis Museum board member/attorney/businessman
Left to right: Alex Núñez, BGE senior vice president; Keisha Clarke English, Exelon director of project management; Cynthia McCabe, Lewis Museum board member/Exelon chief of staff; Alma Roberts, Lewis Museum board member/artist
Left to right: Rudy Dockery, U.S. Air Force civilian; Dr. Patricia Dockery, Lewis Museum board member/Morgan State University associate vice president
Left to right: Dr. Leslie King-Hammond, Lewis Museum board member/Maryland Institute College of Art professor emerita; Tony Fugett, Reginald Lewis’ brother/Reginald F. Lewis Foundation director/Maryland Deparment of Budget and Management director
Left to right: Lafon Porter, IBM corporate counsel; Gersha Porter, United Real Estate Executives realtor
Tasha Newsome loves a party with a theme.
When the Shady Grove Fertility clinical research supervisor heard that the Lewis Museum’s gala had a throwback theme, she knew she needed go no further than her closet to find an outfit to fit one of her favorite eras—the 1950s and 60s.
“I found this Teri Jon dress and threw a petticoat under it,” she said. “Then, I added a fascinator and gloves. And pearls. The 50s were all about pearls.”
To complete the look, Newsome put her long hair in a mid-century updo.
“When you try to work within a theme, you pay respect to the gala,” she explained. “Besides, [dressing to fit] the 50s is easy.”
Left to right: Dr. Brian C. Morrison, Lewis Museum board member/Maryland Commission on African American History & Culture commissioner; Stacy Miles, Embassy Suites Dulles front office operations manager; Ada Pinkston, Maryland Commission on African American History & Culture commissioner/artist
Left to right: Diane Hocker, AFRO News media consultant; Freddi Vaughn, socialite; Ericka Alston Buck, AFRO News freelance writer; Lenora Howze, AFRO News executive director