Young Blacks in Action, Inc. “Howard Gentry, A Man of Honor”

Dr. Rosalyn Gentry and Howard Gentry
Howard Gentry on stage receiving award from Orange County Mayor Demings and event hosts Richard Black, Dee Dee Parker, and Nancy Schwab

ORLANDO – Howard Gentry, the Founder and Director of Young Blacks in Action, Inc. (YBA), was honored at the Rosen Center as one of several Onyx Magazine’s Men of Honor this weekend. Onyx Magazine, now headed by Richard Black, honored men of distinction in diverse areas, which included politics, broadcasting, culinary, legal prowess, and community service. The theme of the event was: Be One of the Tallest Trees in the Forest,” a phrase coined by the late great educator Dr. Mary McCloud Bethune. Howard Gentry was accompanied by his wife, Dr. Rosalyn Gentry, who heads public relations for YBA.

Howard Gentry, affectionately known in the community as “Mr. Flute,” took his place among the Men of Honor for his unwavering commitment to the youth in the Central Florida area for 44 years. YBA was founded by Mr. Flute in 1979, then located at the Washington Shores Shopping Center, with youth from the surrounding areas of Murchinson Terrance, Carver Shores, Lake Mann, Richmond Heights, and Washington Shores. This year marks the 44th year of YBA that it has been in existence. Mr. Flute was quoted during the event as saying, “I hope to live to be a hundred and still marching with YBA!

YBA is comprised of youth ages 4-24, who perform in front of various audiences, including parades, community events, and stage productions. Upcoming performances include the Central Florida Veteran’s Day and Christmas Parades. If you are interested in supporting YBA or have a youth who would like to participate as a percussionist or a dancette, practices are still held on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Call for practice locations.

Also, you can donate or register through the website at Or contact Howard Gentry at 407-739-3388 or his email at [email protected] to get more information about YBA’s upcoming events. YBA is a 501(c)3 organization; your gifts are tax deductible.