Thursday afternoon saw the renaming event of the Taft Street Boys and Girls Club of Dane County which officially became The Erica & Anthony Fleming Boys & Girls Club. The renaming comes after a generous gift of $1.5 million by the Livesey Family in memory of their late children Erica Fleming and Anthony Fleming to ensure the organization’s sustainability at the South Madison location.
The Livesey Family’s latest gift is just a part of the consistent support they have shown the Boys & Girls Club of Dane County. The family also played a pivotal role in offering the organization a new location on the Beltline providing an additional space to house their administrative team with a nominal rent of $1 a year.
The support from the Livesey Family has enabled the newly named location to expand its Teen Club and continue serving the South Madison community.
“We are so very thankful for the Livesey Family’s support and generosity as it is instrumental in helping us build a stronger foundation to support children and families in our community,” said Michael Johnson, president & CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Dane County, in a statement. “While it was very important to us to recognize this family, it was equally as important to also to honor and recognize the trailblazers who have made this community what it is. We made sure that this renaming project involved honoring these two amazing women, Mrs. Willie Lou Harris and Miss Earsie Green, who poured their heart and soul into their work.”
The Welcome Center which stands as a tribute to Mrs. Willie Lou Harris will serve as an inspirational space for kids and families in the South Madison area that Harris helped to develop as a catalyst for community action. Dr. Richard Harris, son of Mrs. Willie Lou Harris, was at the event on Thursday to give words of gratitude at the dedication in memory of his mother’s important work.
“My mom would be overjoyed to see all the great things happening here at the Club. She worked hard to make sure the children in this community had a space to learn and play, to better themselves, to make sure they succeeded, and the work Michael Johnson is doing with Boys & Girls Club is continuing her vision. It’s outstanding,” Dr. Richard Harris said at the event.
The kitchen was also in dedication to Miss Earsie Green who was the Club’s cook for over 25 years, devoting her time and efforts to providing both quality food and loving spirit to children and families. Larenz Tate also gave the Thursday event some celebrity flair as the television and movie actor made an appearance in support with his brothers, similar to their support as special guests at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dane County’s White Party in July.