May 30, 2024


El Chicano, Colton Courier, Rialto Record

The San Bernardino Black Culture Foundation 2018 Senior King & Queen are Don & Celeste Griggs

3 min read
Award group

IECN photo courtesy John Coleman: The 2018 Senior King and Queen are Don and Celeste Griggs. Pictured from left: Daisy Clark, Celeste Griggs, Arlington Rodgers, Jr, Don Griggs, and David Clark

Mrs. Celeste Brown Griggs was born in Waterloo, Iowa. She graduated from East Waterloo High School in 1963, where she was a classmate and sweet heart of Don Griggs. Mrs. Griggs joined Don in California after his return from overseas duty. They were married in 1965 in Oceanside, California.

After moving to the Inland Empire, Celeste worked for Pacific Telephone Company and attended SBVC. She became a homemaker with their three children for five years before deciding to return to the work force. She worked for Kaiser Permanente for 27 years, retiring as Supervisor of staffing and payroll in the Appointment Center in Fontana.

Mr. Don Griggs was born in Waterloo, Iowa. He graduated from East Waterloo High School in 1961. Upon graduation, he enlisted in the United State Marine Corps where he served for four years. He was employed by Southern California Edison for ten years before entering the retail business. Eager to be involved with his new community, Don was instrumental in bringing Boy Scouting to the inner city of San Bernardino serving as a Neighborhood Commissioner over seeing several troops and Cub Packs during the late sixties. Don took boys on overnight scouting trips and chaperoned them at the Helen Dade Boy Scouts of America Camp in Lake Arrowhead during the summer.

Mr. Griggs is well known for his impeccable style of clothing and his love for neckties. He was co-owner of Irv Silvers Men’s Fashions for fifteen years, having stores located in the Inland Center Mall of San Bernardino and The Tyler Galleria of Riverside. He became President of the Merchants Association at Tyler Galleria.

He was hired by Nordstrom’s to manage the Men’s Clothing Department for fifteen years until he retired. While there, he was able to display and sell his personal design collection of ties; “Designs by Don”. Always one to ensure that employees of all races were treated with equity, Mr. Griggs co-founded the Diversity Board to oversee that a certain percentage of employees hired were people of color.

Mr. Griggs has been a small business owner for over thirty years. “I felt there was a niche market that had not been touched in men’s neckwear. I envisioned a quality line of African print men’s neckwear that would reflect elegance and significance, while appealing to professional and distinguished men.”

The Griggs were volunteers at Priscilla’s Helping Hands and now host H.U.G.S (Home Unity Growth Groups).

The SBBCF awards reception took place on February 2 at the San Bernardino City Unified School District auditorium. Arlington Rodgers Jr. was installed as the 2018 President, San Bernardino Black Culture Foundation by retired Judge Robert Fawke, who also introduced the 2018 Recipients of the SBBCF Scholarship Awards.:

Jalen Stevenson, 17, student Cajon High School, 4.85 GPA in the Complete Honors/International Baccalaureate Program. Jalen intends to enroll at UCLA, to continue his progress toward graduate degree(s) in Clinical Psychology.

Jaylan Neal, 17, student Cajon High School, 4.3 GPA, in the International Baccalaureate Program.   Jaylan intends to enroll at UC Riverside, in the Biomedical Sciences Program, before enrolling in medical school to become a pediatrician.

Awards officers
IECN photo courtesy John Coleman: San Bernardino Black Culture Foundation 2018 Officers (from left): Ezequiel Adeleke, Jessica Garcia, Troy Inghraham, Arlington Rodgers, Jr, and Genevieve Echols.


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