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Poll: Your Thoughts on Ald Bosley’s Solicitation For Tuition Money?

June 9, 2013 Education, Featured, Politics/Policy, Sunday Poll 50 Comments
Ald. Freeman Bosley Sr.
Ald. Freeman Bosley Sr.

Last week we learned Ald. Freeman Bosley Sr. (D-03) sent a letter asking help covering $14,276 of a $38,890 bill to the private Xavier College in Chicago.

So the longtime city politician sent an unusual letter to friends and supporters, asking them to provide $14,274 he says is the outstanding balance of his daughter’s upcoming bill at St. Xavier University in Chicago.

“Although the help from scholarships and grants has paid for nearly twenty-five thousand dollars, the remaining balance is still a challenge,” Bosley wrote in the undated letter obtained this week by the Post-Dispatch. (stltoday)

You can view the letter here. Freeman Bosley Sr. is 78, his son, former mayor Freeman Bosley Jr. will turn 59 next month. Just how old is this daughter? Forty-five?

Bosley tells us that his daughter, Kenya Young-Bosley, who is turning eighteen next month, will attend St. Xavier University in Chicago this fall and eventually wants to go to law school. He says that she has maintained a 4.0 GPA and is in the top 2 percent of her class. (Riverfront Times)

Many bright young people attend public colleges, but Bosley seems to have a different view:

But it is a comment made to News Channel Five that continues to ruffle feathers. Bosley,Sr said, “Why would I want to send a child that can do that (get 97%) over four years over to a public university when her intent is to become a lawyer?

“It doesn’t make sense to send her out to Forest Park, now would it.” (KSDK)

“Forest Park” is a reference to St. Louis Community College at Forest Park. Most of us know there are numerous public colleges in Missouri such as University of Missouri, University of Missouri – St. Louis, and Harris-Stowe State University. Heck, at Harris Stowe she should feel right at home.

Bosley Jr. dining hall at Harris Stowe was dedicated in 2011, click image for article from the St. Louis American
Bosley Jr. residence & dining hall at Harris Stowe was dedicated in 2011, click image for article from the St. Louis American

Bosley Jr. attended Saint Louis University, a private school, for undergraduate & law school. As mayor he helped Harris Stowe take over part of the land that was once LaClede Town, part of the urban renewal project that razed the area known as Mill Creek Valley.

Back to Bosly Sr.; apparently officials from the Missouri Ethics Commission say he didn’t violate any laws. Not surprising, Jefferson City isn’t keen on regulation of industry or politicians.

When questioned by numerous news outlets, Ald. Bosley indicated he would return any checks if he receives any.

Which brings me to the poll question for this week:  Ald Bosley sent a letter to supporters asking for help paying the remaining $14,276 private college tuition for his daughter he couldn’t cover. Reaction?

Has the media blown this out of scale? Is this a major violation of public trust? Vote in the poll in the right sidebar then add your comments below.

— Steve Patterson


Currently there are "50 comments" on this Article:

  1. guest says:

    Rather ham handed move, but who cares? There are many more important issues to discuss, yet this story gets a huge amount of media attention. Feel sorry for his daughter to be embarrassed by her father this way.

    • mark says:

      It matters because Bosley has caused a lot of harm for the City of St. Louis. The whole Bosley family is corrupt and EVERYONE knows it. Just pay attention people. Have you all been paying attention the last 30 years to what he has done in North St. Louis? Have you?

      Let us hope that we can put an END to the Bosley years and never see them again.

  2. Sgt Stadanko says:

    just what we need, another lawyer. so she can become another lazy politican as her old man. the world needs ditch diggers as well – this guy has a lot of nerve. -Sarge

    • north st. louis resident says:



      • guest says:

        That’s a serious charge. You better be able to back that up, or you’re just damaging the man’s reputation without any proof. And if there is no proof, then why is there no investigation and arrest of “Bosley the Crook”? How about this: I think you are all racists. So there!

        • guest says:

          Oops, should have said, “And if there is proof, then why is there no investigation and arrest of Bosley…”

          • north st. louis resident says:

            Hey guest, what if I said I was a African-American male living in North St. Louis. Don’t be callin’ random people you don’t know racist.

  3. JZ71 says:

    If his daughter is a minority, has “a 4.0 GPA and is in the top 2 percent of her class”, financial aid should not be difficult to secure, especially at a private institution. Money is fungible – it’s all green and it all spends – if it’s not spent on tuition, it can be spent on a new car. Agree with “guest” – this was a ham handed attempt to allow supporters to curry favor with someone in power. The real question is how many letters were sent? 20? 200? 2000? The fewer and the more targeted, the more it smells. If they went to everyone in his database, I don’t see it as much different than soliciting campaign funds – a lot of small donations spend the same as a few large ones, but come with fewer strings attached.

    • guest says:

      Supposedly it was about a hundred letters, at least that’s what Bosley told reporters. It’s all quite sad, really. Bosley hasn’t had much “public trust” in a long time. He’s always made for what reporters like to call, “good copy”. So this is just one more episode. To be frank, I think there’s a bit of righteous indignation going on with all the reporting/hoopla over this, which at the end of the day, smacks a bit of indirect racism, along the lines of either, “what’s wrong with all those stupid voters in the 3rd Ward that they keep voting this guy into office?”, or, “too bad for them; they get what they deserve”.

      • backprop says:

        I don’t understand how that’s racist…The guy says and does a lot of dumb things, and his constituents keep voting him back into office. It happens in every office in every city and state in the country.

        • guest says:

          The excess hype. The cartoonish emphasis. Think back through the years of media coverage of blacks and it fits the pattern.

          • Hmm, that describes nearly every local TV news story no matter the subject.

          • backprop says:

            Excess hype? It’s local news. That’s what they do. The story is a local buffoon making a fool of himself. How other than with a “cartoonish” emphasis does one portray a clown? I think you’re looking for something that isn’t there.

          • The coverage of Tom Bauer and his donkey was similar. That’s what you get when you elect sideshow Bob.

          • guest says:

            Actually, the coverage of Bauer and his donkey had a more endearing tone to it. The press didn’t shame him about it. Bauer and his donkey marched in parades together and were a fixture on the local political scene.

          • guest says:

            No excess hype? Compare the media coverage of two parks employees embezzeling $500,000 from the city to Freeman Bosley, Sr. sending a dumb letter and getting nothing out of it except public ridicule.

          • The paper, I think, has been fair. TV news tends to sensationalize.

          • guest says:

            What? People don’t “like” the truth?

          • guest says:

            So is the controversial $110,000,000 South County Connector proposal, which hardly has any coverage in the Post, while Bosley’s flub is a banner headline in the “hot topics” section.

          • I think the media likes to focus on people, elected officials in particular. Sorry, but Bosley is a joke.

          • guest says:

            Now you’re getting personal. It’s a personal attack, and, by extension, an attack on all his supporters.

          • backprop says:


          • mark says:

            It’s not no personal attack. Bosley is an elected official and as an elected official for 30 years he has let North St. Louis go to waste Bosley is complete JOKE.

          • FYI: Bosley was first sworn into office on April 18, 1989, along with Terry Kennedy. Ald Roddy, Wessels, & Young have been in office longer.

          • backprop says:

            “It’s local news. That’s what they do.” It’s why I don’t watch local news. But it’s not racist.

          • guest says:

            When does it become racist?

          • backprop says:

            When you can show that it’s motivated by race, I suppose, rather than just being one more example of an easily digestible, tweetable non-story that local non-news latches onto because it’s easy and doesn’t require a whole lot of investigatory prowess.

          • guest says:

            What if coverage of this story is way out of whack compared to other more newsworthy stories? How do you know when something is motivated by race without knowing the inner thoughts of the editors and writers? My original comment didn’t say that it definitively *was* racism, but rather that it “smacked” of racism. What about conservative opposition to Obama? You couldn’t say that hostile press coverage is known to be motivated by race, but a lot of people wonder about it…

          • backprop says:

            I already explained why every little non-news story is out of whack with more newsworthy stories. You conjecture that it’s race, whereas even on a national level we read more about, say, Kim Kardashian than other topics that are actually newsworthy. When the same behavior of reporting pablum vs. “more worthy news” is repeated in local, state, and national media and social media, and it happens across race, political affiliation, and economic spectra, that means you have the burden of proof to show that this one local example is motivated by race.

  4. Moe says:

    Interesting comments so far. First off I do feel sorry for his daughter. She must be embarrassed (at least I hope so).
    Secondly, this is a Bosley Sr problem and has nothing to do with Jr and the History museum, so lets not go down that whole other road.
    Third…..what we have is a long time politician who sent out contribution letters. Poorly written letters at that. He identified himself as Alderman, so obviously this didn’t go to his close friends (when you write to your friends, do you say Hi, this is Dr. so and so? or Hi, this is Professor so and so? No, you say Hi, this is Bob, Tim, or Jane.) So like it or not, this was an attempt to use his connection to the City. Bosley at one time was a very good politician, but now one has to wonder if it’s time to step down.
    Fourth…there is nothing wrong with the Comm. schools. Matter of fact, the street smart kids and parents know to go to them and knock out the first or second year….the basics….while saving money.
    Fifth….She’s short of money. Happens all the time. Hence the use of student aid and grants.
    Sixth…I get that their high school underwent personnel issues and that may have affected the kids, but hey, that’s when the parents really need to step in. Get those apps out, both for schools and for aid and grants. Check, double check, and triple check with the kids. If she wanted to go to Harvard, it was up to them to say, you know we’re not going to b able to help you that much, so apply for as much aid and grants as you can. Again, happens all the time. Seventh…Aid….loans and grants. Hey, the purpose of these are for school and school related expenses. Yes, some grants are for living expenses like rent, food, transportation. But when kids borrow to the hilt and then spend it without any high school classes in personal finance…..well look at the trillion dollar bubble that is about to burst.
    Eight….and most sad….Bosley Sr. doesn’t see that he did wrong. The Post made a “stink of it”….ohhhhhh, poor baby. This reflects both him and other politicians…..they get in, usually campaigning against the system, then by the end of the 2nd or 3rd term….they are part of the system. And right now Missouri seems to be in a race to reach the bottom, like the other Red States. It’s an embarrassment.
    Ninth….I detest how all the other Aldermen, the President of the Board, the Mayor….all say “no comment”. As if he is untouchable…yet if this was during an election, you can bet they would all be having a take on it. Of course, their silence also makes one wonder if others are doing the same thing.
    And finally tenth…..Really Bosley Sr…….dissing our local and state schools???? Where did your other daughters go? How did they pay their way? And for this last one…..this was only for year 1……what about years 2, 3, 4, and possibly grad scool?????????

    • mark says:

      Both Bosley Jr. and Sr. were atrocious and still are for the City of St. Louis. Thank God for Mayor Slay. Honestly, without Slay, St. Louis would have ended up another Detroit!

    • Branwell1 says:

      I felt bad for the daughter too, until Alderman Bosley said that she wrote the letter.

  5. mark says:

    The media has not blown this out of proportion at all. Bosley and his whole family are corrupt. VOTE HIM OUT! GET BOSLEY OUT! I am a city resident and I cannot wait until the day that he is OUT of North St. Louis.

    Yes, you are right Steve. Bosley is a complete joke. He declined to comment on how many children he has. What is that all about. Well, maybe it’s because he has about 20 of em from 4 different women. I mean, seriously, we are not in Biblical times. (joke)

    He also said “I do realize that I’m a walking news story.” … more like a “walking idiot.”

    Who keeps on electing this guy?

  6. Abby says:

    I think North St. Louis needs some fresh blood. I hope lots of people will move there, and vote Bosley and his corrupt group friends out!

    Regentrification needs to happen in North St. Louis. I’m happy with what is happening in ONSL, hopefully that can extend elsewhere.

    • guest says:

      Bosley is alderman for half of Old North St. Louis.

      • Only after the last redistricting.

      • mark says:

        I just hope you are aware that the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group has received ZERO help from Bosley. NOTHING. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. I spoke to a ONSLRG member personally about Bosley and that person said that he didn’t do a single think to help them. FOR SHAME.

  7. Jackie says:

    Hey! Bosley I am a single 50 year old woman going back to college. I work full-time not eligible for any grants or help with college. Don’t see me begging. This whole thing is like dejavu. Two words “Star Jones”. She used the talk show “The View” to beg to get her scam of a wedding paid for. How Ghetto! Tell her to get a job

  8. bailorg says:

    Was this completely tone-deaf? Yes.
    A bad idea from from beginning to end? Yes.
    Should Bosley Sr. have been booted out of office years ago? Heck yes.

    But the real problem is that there is nothing remotely illegal going on according to current law. Just one more example of how nearly irreparably broken Missouri ethics/campaign finance laws are.

    • guest says:

      Exactly! Triple like!!! Once again, St. Louisans are distracted from the real problems in our community and are instead caught up in a tabloid gossip story. No wonder this town is in the shape it’s in!

      • mark says:

        This is not a tabloid gossip story. THIS IS CALLED CORRUPTION. BOSLEY IS A REAL PROBLEM IN OUR COMMUNITY AND HAS BEEN FOR AGES. plain and simple.


  9. anon says:

    I don’t feel sorry for the daughter. This might be stirring the pot but if I would have to guess, I would guess that she had poor grades her first year and might have lost any scholorships or she was too lazy to reapply for grants and scholorships that had to be renewed every year. Wouldn’t any money go to pay for next years tuition? What college lets you continue to take classes with an outstanding balence? Further more I am not impressed at all with her being in the top 2% at St. Elizabeth’s, if it was such a brain trust school, it would have stayed open.

    • moe says:

      Anon….Well you might have some good points on the daughter….you don’t on St. Eliz. They are a private, catholic school. They suffer from the same issues as the others…..a dwindling supply of nuns (cheap labor) needing to be replaced by regular teachers at street prices. They also suffer from a decreasing supply of inner-city Catholics that value that education and a greater number of parents that just simply cannot afford the $10,000 a year (roughly). Of course that begs the question…..has he considered the money he will no longer pay St. Eliz. as going towards her college?

      • Anon says:

        Then why does SLUH continue to thrive?

        • moe says:

          How many kids live near SLUH compared to St. Eliz? SLUH sits on a major highway allowing easier commutes. That’s just one reason. There are many, including mission.

          • guest says:

            SLUH is an institution with pride, prestige, and Jesuit brotherhood. For a high school, it has phenomenal alumni support. Ever heard of the “SLUH Mafia”? Sounds like another topic for a forum poll, eh?

          • branwell1 says:

            I have many neighbors in TGE with high school age daughters, none of whom considered St. Elizabeth Academy (SEA). Sadly, I think the school has not been academically competitive and has fallen short in community outreach to sustain its numbers. A local consolidated Catholic grade school principal told me that in all her years at the school, SEA was never a presence in terms of recruiting 6th-8th grade girls who were looking at high school opportunities, despite the fact that the SEA campus was less than a mile away. Other schools like Nerinx and Rosati-Kain energetically “shopped” themselves to prospective new students.


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