For its 16th year, the Ward 6 Brickies finally returned back in person for the first time in two years! On December 7, 2022 we gathered together at the Hill Center for an evening of community celebration and great food and drinks donated by some of our wonderful Ward 6 local businesses.
It was fantastic to see everyone in person (thank you vaccines!) and get to say hi, catch up, and celebrate the great neighbors, organizations, and businesses who help make Ward 6 a great place to all home. Read all about the 2022 Brickie Award winners below:
Community Organization: Friends of Southwest DC
Friends of Southwest DC raises funds from local residents to provide small grants for educational, charitable, and community development projects in Southwest DC. It was founded in 1998 and has been an important, quiet part of Southwest ever since. In 2022 it awarded over $50,000 in grants to local nonprofits providing funding for college scholarships, a free little library, a food pantry, free school supplies, field trips for kids in Southwest, and much more.
Neighbor Award: Jerome Jefferies (AKA the “Mayor of 10th Street”)
Almost 100 of Jerome Jefferies neighbors submitted nominations for him, which should be a testament to how important he is to this community. He’s truly a neighborhood institution — his family has lived in the same house since the 1950s. He is a caring and supportive neighbor who takes so much pride in his community and truly loves his neighbors. He does a little bit of everything – greeting people every morning on their walks to work and school, organizing leaf collections, working with the city trash collection and other measures to keep the neighborhood clean, knows everyone’s names, helps out with permitting, keeps packages safe, keeps an eye out for public safety issues, knows all the construction workers in the neighborhood, and more. He’s become the de-facto neighborhood block captain. He is the epitome of what is means to be a good neighbor — not doing it for recognition or thanks or an award, he does it because he cares about his community and the people in it.
Business Award: The Queen Vic
The owner and chef of the Queen Vic, Ryan Gordon, opened the restaurant as, he tells it, to help fill his British wife’s desire for a true English pub in DC. But over the years, the Queen Vic has become much more than just your neighborhood pub. Ryan is a great advocate for our small businesses, and in particular our restaurant and nightlife industry. The Queen Vic helped organize and participate in Food Rescue, which minimizes restaurant food waste by getting it to folks who could use a good meal. In the early pandemic, Ryan stepped up to help his industry. He was a key force in pushing the city to create streateries, and help H Street businesses apply to create the outdoor dining spaces we love and have made a permanent part of our streets. When restaurants shut down, he partnered with other industry folks to safely prepare meals for restaurant workers who were suddenly unable to work and earn a living. He’s a tireless advocate for H Street NE and constantly working with my office on ways to make it even better, and stronger, and a destination in the region. He’s a wonderful example of everything the Business Brickie is meant to celebrate.
Civic Pride Award: Save Mott’s Market
The Civic Pride Award was created because there are so many efforts, people, and groups that didn’t quite fit into the other categories but were helping elevate the community. The group behind Save Mott’s Market has done just that. When our community lost Mott’s, a corner store on 12th St SE, that has been an institution in Ward 6 for decades, this committed group of neighbors formed a grassroots ownership group to buy the building and are working hard to renovate and reopen the store soon. So many longtime residents of this community know how much of a legacy Mott’s Market had in the neighborhood, from when it first opened in 1916, and it was such a loss for the community when it closed. This movement truly embodies the spirit of civic pride: pride in your neighborhood, pride in preserving a vital piece of the community, and pride in each other for banding together to make this happen.
Public Service Award: Nathaniel “Coach Skip” Greene
Nathaniel Greene, better known as Coach Skip, from the King-Greenleaf Rec Center, embodies the spirit of public service in his commitment to providing programming and sports for kids at King-Greenleaf. For about 5 years now at King-Greenleaf, he has built programs that bring hope and expectation into young people's lives, working with kids who badly need a safe place to relax. It’s not just about the sports and programs though, he’s also a mentor and source of support for kids who experience the trauma of gun violence in their communities. He will work with anyone if they are truly interested in combining time, love and a safe place to grow young people's confidence and skills that range from basketball to emotional well-being. It’s hard to describe just how important it is for these kids to have someone like Coach Skip in their lives, he’s an invaluable part of the Ward 6 community. And it’s not an easy job – he's constantly being asked to do more with less, but persists anyways, ensuring that the programs are provided for these kids, rising above and beyond to serve the community.
Thank you to our sponsors (listed on the poster) who provided the great food and drinks, the Hill Center for hosting us, neighbors who nominated folks, and the many, many neighbors who joined us. This is always such a special evening as it reminds us of the many bonds we share as neighbors, block by block.
*CHECK BACK SOON FOR MORE PHOTOS*