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BMWOCM A G A Z I N E Business Men and Women of Color

Issue No. 1 Jan. 2019 – Mar. 2019

What Does it Take to be a TEDx Speaker? Going Back to Basics with STEM and the Arts Financial Growth: Building Wealth

5 Tips for Filmmakers 2019 BMWOC is BACK! Coming Full Circle with Tilern Dancing to the Top


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January – March 2019 | Number 1



6 Financial Growth: Building a Strong Foundation How are you managing your money?

8 Youth Spotlight

Royale Renae Dancing her way to the top!


9 I want to be on TEDx!

Are you inspiring to become a TEDx Speaker? If so, how hard is it?

18 5 Tips for Filmmakers

Filmmakers are successful doing these five things.

21 STEM Education


Going back to basics learning Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics

27 Visual Arts

Painting and Using Visual Elements


29 Creative Music

Using music as a universal language to inspire others

31 Author Spotlight

Coming Full circle with Coach Tilern Advertising / Media / Podcast Inquiries: Disclosure: Advertisements and articles are published with the expressed written permission of the author or contributor. Any statements made in the articles are those by the authors and do not reflect the views and opinions expressed by ALSTNTEC, LLC. Copyright © ALSTNTEC, LLC 2015-2019 All Rights Reserved BMWOC is a registered Trademark


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from the Editor Going Back to Basics Before we were fully born, one of the first things we experienced from the outside world from within our mother’s womb was sound. The voices of our parents or music played as we unknowingly listened. When we arrived, there was now “sight,” more sound, and the abundance of knowledge that flooded our minds. As we grew older, the curiosity of how things worked resulted in products, services, and technologies we use in today’s world.

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) is all around us. It is in everything we do and it’s everywhere we go. With all of this evolving information, why do some feel that we are losing interest STEM education? Have we now found new ways of learning about STEM that does not involve actual learning? It's the same with Arts and Music. There is also less chatter about our interests in become intricate and visual painters, visionaries, and creative musicians. As new automated technologies make it easier to do things, our interests in the “how” has quickly faded away. Do you think we are losing our foundation on the basics?

Let’s not forget our speakers. TEDx speakers are our main feature in this magazine. The speakers highlighted in this issue are not just Ted speakers, they are individuals who have transcended from other professions and perfected their speaking business. As a result of their efforts, they had the opportunity to grace one of the most popular stages in the world. Their feature focuses on their story and what it took to get on a TEDx stage. Professional speaking is a business, and just as important as learning about STEM and the Arts. This goes back to my earlier statement about learning sound, sight, and knowledge.

Maybe the answer lies in going back to basics when we first learned how math, technology, science, and engineering works. What about learning how music was created, or how someone would go about painting a picture or use their body to show expression through dance? More importantly, what about bringing back those who stood amongst the crowd speaking about these wonders? Today, we call Professional or Motivational Speakers. Speakers have a unique ability to use a universal language to tell a story that will invoke emotions; and those emotions create a connects with their audience. The end result -- they learn something new. So, why not speak on the importance of STEM, Arts, and true art of Speaking? Whether in a career or business, I believe in order to build a great foundation in anything you need to go back to the basics. In this issue, I am featuring those who stepped up to embrace these amazing knowledge areas so that everyone will understand why it’s important. As you read the different articles, feel free to share your thoughts and other relevant topics you are interested in seeing in the BMWOC magazine. Please send your feedback to We value your feedback and any information collected will be used to improve our services for small businesses, authors, and speakers. What are your thoughts? Send your response to

Anne Alston


4 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

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If you had to prioritize your personal financial goals and your business financial goals, which would you choose? Should they be mutually exclusive? As a Financial Coach and Insurance Broker, I am constantly asked, “I want to start my business, but should I improve my personal finances first?” The short answer to that question is, “Focus on both, but prepare your personal finances for business ownership.” The vast majority of people were not “taught” how money works and how to protect their assets and health, as they build financial freedom. Unfortunately, terms like financial stability, financial security and financial freedom are not discussed in the low to middle income homes or schools. Therefore, we have to start with the basics. We need to discover and shift the negative behaviors, habits and emotions about money that impede our growth. Financial literacy is the key element to doing so.

In relation to preparing your personal finances for business ownership, what does that even look like? Start with doing a personal finance assessment (PFA). A PFA will include listing your assets (what you own) and liabilities (what you owe). If we are being honest, almost everyone has debt, but not everyone has assets. The difference between your assets and liabilities is your net worth. Before you start a business, ideally you want your net worth to be in the black, not red (shortfall). If you own more than you owe, you are starting off on good ground!

A PFA will also include a personal budget aka a listing of your income (what you earn) and expenses (what you spend). Again, if you are coming up short every month, you will need to look at that very seriously. The difference between your income and assets is your cash flow. Cash flow indicates good financial management and the availability of funds to invest in your business.

You are the first investor in your business. If you have a healthy, steady cash flow each month, create a separate account that is in addition to your emergency fund. Your emergency fund should be enough to cover 3 – 6 months of your personal expenses, should your income take a hit in the future. The separate account should be used to begin purchasing business equipment and supplies for your business. 6 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

“We have to start with the basic. . . discover and shift negative behaviors.” This will ensure that you are preparing and building business assets, not business debt.

Considering the fact that within the first 5 years of business, you will be the personal guarantor for your business, you will want to review and improve your personal credit and score. If your score does not reflect sound financial integrity, the ability to consistently repay your debts, then discovering effective ways to improve it should be a priority.

This one is very important. Do not wing it, when it comes to building, protecting and growing your business. Build a strong financial team. Do not try to handle matters that you are not skilled or trained to do. Outsourcing to the experts will cost you money, but not nearly as much as ignorance will. Your financial team should include an experienced Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Business Attorney, Insurance Agent(s), Business Banker and Business Coach. Establishing these relationships early in your business is critical. These people are usually also very resourceful and know other professionals that you may need such as, photographers, public relations specialists, graphic artists, media professionals, etc. Ask for referrals and be prioritize networking. Legally establishing the business, branding & marketing, establishing business credit, obtaining loans & grants, etc., are all critical factors in the structuring, market share and longevity of your business. However, if you do not establish a strong personal foundation, none of those things will be an option. Constance Craig-Mason is a passionate, dedicated and experienced Licensed Insurance Broker, Financial Coach, and former Small Business Consultant. She has been helping individuals, families and businesses for nearly 10 years. Being licensed in Maryland and Pennsylvania, she has been blessed to have worked some of the top insurance carriers to include Transamerica, State Farm, Baltimore Life and Primerica. Constance provides a full Complimentary Financial Analysis that includes spending plan, short- & long-term savings, credit restoration, debt elimination, insurance protection & retirement supplement strategies. Constance is active in her community and is an Awareness Advocate for breast cancer, sexual assault and mental health. As a Board Member of Shay Sharpe’s Pink Wishes (SSPW), an Ambassador for Heal A Women to Heal A Nation (HWHN) & About Her Business (AHB), a member of Women in Business International (WBI), an Influencer Member of the International Women’s Association (IWA), she is obviously very passionate about women’s empowerment.

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YOUTH SPOTLIGHT - Dance Royalle Renae is a 16-yearold dancer and aspiring choreographer. She has been fully committed to dance since the age of 12; initially falling in love with the craft at the age of three.

Royalle realized dance was a passion when she performed in the musical Aladdin Jr. She thought that her participation would simply be something to

“pass time” but quickly found, that it was much more. Dance was in her being and she never wanted that feeling to stop. Over the years, Royalle has participated in many other musicals, such as Fame, Frozen, and The Lion King to name a few. She has also had the pleasure of participating in Debbie Allen’s Hip Hop Intensive, to help hone her craft. As she moves forward in pursuing a career in dance, she finds enjoyment in showing others how to dance as well.

After graduating from high school, Royalle would like to further her education at either UC Irvine or Stanford University, where she can enhance her craft even more. After college, she plans to open a Dance Studio of her own; giving back to students and putting smiles on their faces…the way dance has put a smile on hers! 8 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

I Want to be a Speaker Are you a professional speaker and aspire to get on the great TEDx stage? Well, these four experts will tell you about their journey, and how they got there.



TEDx Speaker, Two-time #1Award-winner author, and Founder of the SOAR Community Network and host of Tea with Mali.

In 2015, Mali was selected as a Belief Team community partner through Values Partnership for the Oprah Winfrey’s OWN Network BELIEF Initiative. She has been nominated for several awards including Heroines of Washington D.C. Award by the March of Dimes, twice for the Women of the Year Award by NEW – Network Executive Women and recognized as the iBoss Capital Navigator in 2018 for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses grow and thrive. She is a coauthor of “Seen and Sustained”, “Born to be Me,” and “The Balancing Act.” “A Million Fireflies” is Mali’s memoir about her voyage from war-torn Laos to America. 9 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

Interview with Mali Phonpadith BMWOC: This year in 2019 will mark such a tremendous milestone for the BMWOC platform. One of the things that I would really love to celebrate in 2019 are the speakers who are out there, just doing their thing on stage speaking about their truth, their stories or their passion. Some of the speakers I’ve come across, they’ve longing to be a TEDx speaker. So, I wanted to get a little information about your background, and how you got into speaking. Mali: Well, I am a child refugee of war that came from the war-torn country of Lao during the Vietnam era with my family as a very young child. So, the story really begins there, in a refugee camp. A church in the Maryland/DC area sponsored our entire family, and we basically lived most of our lives in the DC area. We grew up with basically nothing. We had support from the church, lots of fundraisers, clothing drives, and food drives to support us. But, after about 2-3 years, my mother and father pretty much said “We really have to learn how to stand on our own two feet.” I really just watched and being a witness to their experience; how they looked at life and how they were able to move to an entirely different land with no English language capabilities and build a life for themselves. So, the passion and the drive to be a success as I define success was really driven by my parent’s ability to persevere and to see always the positive things in life because life was always so difficult. What led me to be a speaker and to be a business owner was really driven by the fact that as a young child, I just really wanted to help my family move from poverty into a space of comfort. It wasn’t even about success or making millions and billions of dollars it was just being able to feel as though we were not stressed every day or fearful or hungry. So, I worked really hard, I always knew that the only way to get out of poverty was through education and just basically work. All the years in my career where I was typically asked to either pitch some type of proposal or train a class or mentor. After I have been with a company for a little while, they would typically put me out in front and I thought, “Wow, what is it about my personality or the way in which I share that makes it so my managers and supervisors saw the ability for me to be in front. BMWOC: Wow Mali. I’m gonna tell you, I am really taken aback and so inspired by your story.

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So, what’s really inspiring about your story is that you guys were able to persevere all of the obstacles-- no matter how much they seem overwhelming to you at the time; but you still managed to reach for that education or find a path in your life that would bring you out of that. So, the question I have for you is: for those folks that are in these situations and who really aspire to get out of their situations, can you share some of your coping mechanisms of how you kind of dealt with this type of thing growing up as a child and kind of share with them what they can do to kind of keep their spirits up and aspire to keep trying to do whatever it is they are trying to do? Mali: Well first I have to say that I can’t take credit for all of the ways I was able to “get out” like getting out of poverty and out of the situation. It was really through a lot of support and love from my family who always taught us love and truth, which is that we were special, we were unique, and that we had the capacity to be great. I also had a lot of mentors ya know; my high school teachers for instance saw something special in me and went out of their way to support and tutor and give extra because they knew that our parents did not help us with homework because they didn’t speak the language. So me, as well as my siblings, we all had to figure it out ourselves...but that isn’t really true because we didn’t figure it out just by ourselves. So one piece of advice that I would give is..really connect with people who see your uniqueness and make sure that you grab onto their love and their passion and their desire to support you instead of denying it or being prideful. The other thing too that I would say is: one way to process a lot of pain and to have a brighter vision for yourself is journaling. You know for me, it was being able to put my pains, worries and anxieties somewhere outside of my body and outside of my mind and my heart so it wasn’t poisoning me and keeping me in a place where I would have these limiting beliefs. So, I wrote it out and some people do it through other

Interview with Mali Phonpadith various ways. One piece of advice would be to find a way to relieve your pain, your worries, and your anxieties whether it’s through sharing with friends or (in my case) writing poetry.. But yeah get it out of you so that you don’t own those limiting beliefs and make it become your truth. BMWOC: Thank you so much for sharing your background because I really believe that through this process when people hear of the stories like this that it’s not the end of the world, that there is hope like someone else has been through it and got over it and you’re showing that and I really love that about your story. So when you started looking at speaking and education, what was some of the things that kind of gravitated to you that drew you to public speaking? Mali: I was typically asked to either pitch some type of proposal or train a class or mentor whether it was the youth or colleagues or peers that were entering my industry. After I have been with a company for a little while, they would typically put me out in front, and I thought “Wow, what is it about my personality or the way in which I share or emote that makes it so my managers and supervisors saw the ability for me to be in front or to spell or to persuade or convince or whatever fill in the blank? I knew that there was something about me that was natural because I had never really developed that aspect, didn’t take any classes on it if you will. I knew that if others saw the power of my storytelling or the power that I had to connect with an audience and so that kind of planted the seed to be honest and kinda said “Hmm...there is something here..the ability for me to get out front, share emotionally from the heart what is necessary to evoke some type of response, emotion or decision. BMWOC: Right! You must have a really good story to tell that is related to your personality and the audience. I know that is really important as well correct? Mali: Yes! I know a lot of speakers or aspiring speakers who ask me: “How did you get to a place where you get to be a TEDx speaker? How did you get to travel down the country and share?

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What do you do to get paid to speak?” and all these wonderful great questions. It really comes down to being honest with the truth that you do want to tell. What I mean by that is a lot of time we learn so much about our industry, and we go in a research which is all wonderful because we need that; however, we forget to go deeper and look into our own life experiences because our life experiences become someone else’s classroom and my friends had told me that over and over again in this field. I think the one thing that truly helped me was to study speakers that aspired to be like because once you know your personality, the way in which you share stories and the way in which you speak, you’ll then start to understand the power of knowing your style. BMWOC: Okay awesome. Can you share maybe one tip that inspires speakers who are learning how to do this or maybe people who are speakers but maybe still haven’t been able to connect with their audience? Mali: I think the one thing that truly helped me was to study speakers that aspired to be like because once you know your personality and the way in which you share stories, and the way in which you speak, you’ll then start to understand the power of knowing your style. So one thing I would say is figure out your unique style. For the type of speaker I am, I know I am not the type of speaker that's like “Rah, Rah!” very loud and energetic motivational’s just not authentic to me. I am more of an inspirational speaker, a true story-teller and so for my style it’s not so loud and bold and boisterous on stage but I find a lot of energy from that and really enjoy watching speakers that are very energetic and motivational. But for me, if I am out there trying to be wouldn’t feel true to me. So that’s one thing: understand your style, honor it, and know that there will be a community of people out there are going to be looking for someone like you. I would also say practice, watch other people who are very similar to your style and see how they are presenting and sharing stories. BMWOC: How hard is it to become a TEDx speaker? Mali: My experience is unique in the sense that I have been striving to get to a place where I can

Interview with Mali Phonpadith be on that TEDx platform for a long time. I just knew that I had to practice and keep practicing and get as many speaking opportunities as I can captured on film, watch myself and study, create a speaker’s reel and all those tech list things that you know to do. But then when it was time, when it actually happened, it was so crazy. I honestly just got a message on Facebook and that message was from someone that I had met recently but didn’t have a real strong relationship with as she was new in my community. She basically said that “I am, or was supposed to be, a TEDx speaker, and unfortunately, because of professional and personal reasons I am not able to do it. When I thought of the topic and the type of message that this particular TEDx had a theme for, immediately you were the first person that came to mind.” So, that’s how I was able to get invited in and submit my topic. They were able to research me because I already had stuff online, and it was pretty much a sure bet because I was heavily referred in. Now, let me share that the reason why openly they said yes was because I had been practicing for all of those years so when they did go and research me to make sure 100% that I was the one that they would choose, they had something online to go to. They were able to track down a couple of speaker videos and reels. They were able to go on LinkedIn and look at all my different recommendations of me as a speaker. So, even though the situation was wonderful and unexpected, all those years of preparation is truly what it takes to be a TEDx speaker -- The right time, the right people, the right networks, the right place, and all of those years of practice. Listen to her full interview during the 2019 Business Men and Women of Color Podcast season at scheduled to air starting May 13, 2019 through July 1, 2019.

“They say that The best kind of story comes from your own truths and your own experiences when you want to have an emotional connection. We all have unique experiences and we have to craft and create stories that are around our life journey because we are the best teacher when we have experience in what it is that we are trying to teach.”

…Continue on page 14

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Special Guest Speaker:

Franchon Crews-Dezurn, WBC Super Middleweight Champion of the World

“Phenomenal Women Walking in Our Purpose Conference,” with Authors and professional phenomenal women, collaborates and connects with speakers to empower, encourage, inspire, motivate and uplift women to be the best they can be and use their God-given talents and gifts. You are in for a wonderful awe-inspiring, inspirational, motivational experience! You will leave with new information and a strong desire and grit to reach your purpose and use your God-given gifts and talents in life. We will show you how to do it!

Early Bird Tickets on sale now!

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Michael J. PENNEY

United States Marine Corps Veteran, TEDx Speaker, Author, and Co-Founder of 5Paragraph

Being a TEDx presenter has always been a goal of mine. The idea of taking the TEDx stage to share some experience, knowledge, and wisdom with a group of people is a once in a lifetime opportunity. When the TEDx Raleigh announcements went out, I was anxious to see who would be involved. The leadership were looking for speakers with extraordinary experiences that led to life lessons. I found this to be a perfect opportunity for me to bring forward a simple mantra I learned "add VALUE'. It's helped while dealing with some of life's most difficult hardships. divorce, death, separation, illness, and poverty. I had experienced each of these in my life. The way, I found, to get through those hard times was to focus on that which I could control. I entrenched myself alongside value adding people and brought my strengths to the situation in order to help out our group. You'll learn more watching the talk. It's what led up to the presentation that you're interested in. It took 140+ takes to get the right 2-minute video. Some may call me a perfectionist. I wanted the video to be a single take with a running presentation, which would convey to the onlooker my ability to present live. Perfectionist, sure, but I also am not very good at editing video. So, this was more of me relying on what I understood as a speaker and educator. This was the biggest struggle for me, working with video and recording mediums when I have vastly more experience working as a live instructor with audience sizes ranging from 20-300+ attendees. My lack of video skills nearly lost me my spot at TEDx Raleigh. The week before our presentation date, the speakers were working with the leadership on rehearsing their talks and editing their presentations. I had given my presentation live, numerous times, however all of the leaders hadn't seen the live versions. They wanted me to record my talk for review over a video recording medium that was entirely foreign to me. The presentation was horrible. It was off cadence and patchy. The TEDx Raleigh leaders were worried I wouldn't have what it takes to get out there on stage. This may have been some sort of reverse psychology motivation to ensure I performed well. Whatever it was, I was a nervous wreck leading into the day, but I would never let it show. March 19, 2016, I received my first standing ovation; something that doesn't often happen to educators. Since the TEDx talk, I've received other opportunities to come speak with large audiences. I relish the idea of being able to covey an experience and deliver something to an audience that they may practically apply in their own lives. Which is why I developed "5 Paragraph Business Plan" and

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U.S. Air Force Veteran, TEDx Speaker, Author, Founder of The Success Corps, and Podcast Host of Life Transformation Radio

One of the pinnacle moments of a Speaker’s career is standing on the “Red Circle”. That infamous carpet has been under the feet of Simon Sinek, Brene Brown, Ken Robinson, Amy Cuddy, and Shawn Achor. In the Speaker world, these greats are the ones to follow. In my mind, it means I’ve made it as a Speaker once I have given my TEDx talk. I’ve reached a place that many strive to reach but many never make it to this prestigious stage. A TEDx Event is an independently organized event with anywhere from 8 to 12 or so Speakers. Each event has a theme that the talks will revolve around and is organized by local planners approved by TED. The process varies from a simple application with a 1-minute clip sent it for review to an in-person interview, multiple call backs, and then finally a Yes or a No. It is ultimately up to the Organizer how they want to pick their Speakers. I had to send in a 1-minute clip of what my topic would be about and how it would change the world. The whole idea is that your topic, if implemented, would be the “Big Idea Worth Spreading” and change the face of humanity. It is an honor to speak on the TEDx Stage. So how do you apply and get accepted? Go to and search for upcoming TEDx events. Find one with a theme that resonates with you and that your talk will fit seamlessly. Most, if not all, will have some sort of online form to fill out. The key is to show how your talk fits the theme as well as is a big idea worth spreading. I applied to four to six talks in 2016, eight talks in 2017, and the 9th try I was accepted to TEDx Wilmington in Delaware. Leading up to this moment of acceptance, I started as a Drill Instructor for Air Force Basic Training, Master Resilience Trainer in 2014, Professionally Speaking in 2016 and TEDx Speaker in 2017. It took me from 2009-2017 to perfect my talk, learn the stage presence and be good enough to be on stage. I practiced my TEDx talk every day for weeks leading up to the event. It takes years of hard work, practice, and experience. I suggest watching famous TEDx talks, buying books like, “Talk Like TED”, “How to Deliver a Great TED Talk”, and similar books to get you prepared for the moment. These all helped me deliver a talk that was well received and has over 12K views.

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Founder and CEO of Empowered Living, TEDx Speaker, and Host of The You-est You Podcast.

I have been facilitating leadership and mindset workshops for Fortune 500 companies, the Government and Non-profits over the past five years. After publishing my first book, I started getting asked to speak at events, retreats and company programs. I decided early on in my career that I wanted to make a bigger impact by sharing my story, teachings and lessons learned to bigger audiences in the TEDx community. Then I joined a speaking mastermind group and started to work on crafting my narrative in a way that would touch and move the listener at a whole new level. While in this mastermind, I saw a dear friend do a TEDx in Delaware. I decided it was time to apply and was delighted and grateful to be selected for two TEDx venues at the University of Maryland ’Strike a Chord’ and LadyBirdLake in Austin. It was an honor to do both talks; Words That Get in The Way and Get a PhD in YOU, and you can find them now on my Youtube channel.

with a concentration in nutrition, and more than twelve certifications in leadership, health and well-being. Julie runs a coaching program, Monetize Your Purpose, for change makers, entrepreneurs and coaches. Julie is the author of the Get a PhD in YOU book series and creator of the documentary and course, Hungry for More. Julie is also on the faculty at Georgetown University in their coaching program. Julie is passionate about helping you to master your inner world, so you can crush it at work and beyond.

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Julie is a multi-time TEDx speaker, host of The You-est You® podcast and meditation teacher on the popular app, Insight Timer. Julie has a master's degree in health & wellness coaching,

Be part of the most unique and empowering platform in the world! Anne Alston provides the bridge that connects us all to inspire others.

#BePartOfTheMovement #SupportSmallBusinessesandAuthors

Visit to Apply

The Business Men and Women of Color Podcast Series (BMWOC) will be live on May 13, 2019 through July 1, 2019. Share what you do, how you do it and you passion. INSPIRE a Nation! We are seeking participants in the following professions: Healthcare, Mental Health, Technology, Engineering, Science, Construction, Law Enforcement, Politicians, Legal, Arts, Musicians, Actors/Actresses, Financial, Tax and Accounting, Human Resources, Social Services, Government workers, Philanthropy / Non-Profits, Professional Speaking, Authors, Event Planning, and others! To view the 2018 BMWOC participants and award winners, visit for more information.

2019 Sponsors and Participants (more to be added)

17 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

5 TIPS For Filmmakers Written By Artis Alston, Jr. Video Editor, ALSTNTEC


Write Down Everything

There is nothing more frustrating than having a great idea for a film or script and forgetting what it was; or you come back to it later because you did not write it down. Life can be fast pace and unpredictable sometimes; and when it comes to be a Filmmaker, you will often find that you will not always have time to act on ideas and inspirations the moment that it strikes you.


Networking is Key

Successful filmmakers know that their achievements and success is due in part to those who have taught and inspired them. Here is how filmmakers become successful filmmakers: They accept the fact that there is more to learn than they already know. They accept that there are always new ideas and new ways at looking at things. Get the networking habit. There are countless opportunities. Spend some time on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to check out who the thought leaders are in your industry and follow them. Learn how successful filmmakers manage their online reputation.

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Work with what you have

Do not write that epic crowd scene unless you know there is a festival happening next week that you can steal as a backdrop. Play to your strengths. There is probably something unique that you or your family have access to that you can use in your movie. If your dad has a tractor, write a movie around that. If he doesn’t, don’t.


Be Your Own Worst Critic

Much like solving a problem, the first step to improving upon your skills is to realize that there is room for improvement. Gather up all of your films, get a notepad, and sit there for a couple of hours just jotting down everything that you think could be better. Most filmmakers tend to skimp on the writing when starting their career, but all of us have faults all over the place. Look at your stories, your dialogue, your cinematography, your editing, and your sound, and then ask yourself is this something I’d pay $15 to see at a cinema? Is it a piece of art, a carefully orchestrated ensemble of visuals meant to express an emotion or an idea, or is it defined by the constraints of my location and my budget, directed to a greater extent by luck than by myself? Once you define the key problems of your filmography, you can start fixing them.


Create a Feedback Logbook

One of the cheapest and best purchases you can make is a small lined notebook. Simply pick a brand you like. I’m a fan of Field Notes myself, but any stack of papers will do the same job — and always carry it around in your backpack or jacket pocket, as your dedicated ‘feedback logbook’. In it, you should store every piece of feedback you get on your films, no matter how trivial it may seem. As similar comments start coming in, simply add a symbol next to the original note. This will allow you to measure what viewers notice in your movies, and give you a better idea of your strengths and weaknesses. It’s also a must-have accessory when editing your film and screening various versions, as it provides you with a checklist of all the changes you should consider.

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Hi I'm David Fiensy, Author & Speaker. My passion is teaching biblical studies, interpretation, ideas, biblical archaeology, the analogy of specific texts, Christian Origins, and more! ★ Providing conclusions, challenges & considerations of future biblical interpretation. After graduating from Duke University with a Ph.D. in New Testament and Second Temple Judaism, I taught for seven years at Kentucky Christian University. I then served a two-year tenure at the Institut zur Erforschung des Urchristentums in Tuebingen, Germany. Upon returning to the United States, I was accepted a church pastorate for six years and then resumed teaching at Kentucky Christian University. I participated in seven archaeological excavations and surveys and has other wise traveled widely in the Mediterranean area and the Middle East. Now semi-retired and involved in several writing projects, my wife and I are the parents of two daughters and two granddaughters. I enjoy running, hiking, cycling, and reading mystery novels.

Order your copy from Amazon and Christian Faith Publishing Other books by this Author:

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STEM EDUCATION & THE ARTS Let’s go back to basics. There is a need for more people in the Science, Technology,

Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), Creative Music, and Visual Art. To keep the evolution of modern education going, I am raising the flag of awareness by featuring a Scientist, Information Technologist, Painter, Visionary, Musician, and a Performer who embraced true knowledge in STEM and the Arts.

STEM EDUCATORS Dr. Mina Izadjoo, Integrated Pharma Services (EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW) Recent Maryland Women Business Center – 2018 Small Business Innovator of the Year award winner Dr. Mina Izadjoo. Dr. Izadjoo is the President and Chief Science Officer of integrated Pharma Services and is the current President of the Washington Academy of Sciences.

Formerly, she was the Chief Science Officer and Laboratory Director of Trideum Biosciences, Senior Distinguished Scientist, and Director of the Diagnostics and Translational Research Center (DTRC) of the Henry M. Jackson Foundation (HJF) for Advancement of Military Medicine. Prior to this, she served as the Chief of Wound Biology and Translational Research (WBTR) Division at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) in the Washington, DC prior to her position at HJF.

Her research efforts focused on developing and evaluating diagnostics and therapeutics research. Dr. Izadjoo is the recipient of numerous awards including the 2011 Biological Sciences Award from the Washington Academy of Sciences, and “Distinguished Scientist” in accordance with the Public Law 94-36 for demonstrated ability and experience to enhance the activities of the AFIP in consultation, education, and research. Dr. Izadjoo received her PhD in Microbiology in 1992 from Louisiana State University, and holds an Associate Professorship at Uniformed Services University for Health Sciences (USUHS). This was followed by six years of post-doctoral fellowships at Texas A&M University and NIH in molecular biology and immunogenetics. She currently is an advisor to a number of industry partners and serves in the Advisory Board of the Anna Mendez University System in Puerto Rico. 21 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

STEM EDUCATORS BMWOC: Tell us a little bit about your background and where you’re from and how you got into this line of work. Mina: I’ve always wanted to be a physician that was my dream. When I took my first class in college in microbiology, I fell in love with the unseen world, and that is the time that I really decided to pursue microbiology. So, my BS, Masters degree, PhD all the focus was in Microbiology. After that, I also did some work in Immunology - actually the work that I did in my first post-doc at Texas A&M University was working at an infectious disease in cattle called brucella. It was the reason that I was hired by the U.S Army after my N.I.H work. From there, I joined the Henry M. Jackson Foundation for Advancement of Military Medicine, and after that I entered the private sector. First with Trideum Biosciences and at that time I was not a business owner but with Integrated Pharma Services, I became a business owner. BMWOC: So taking a step back in time when you were first introduced to pharmacy, scientific knowledge and skills and things of that nature, how difficult was it to enter that line of work in the very beginning? You have some knowledge in immunization so what was your first experiences going into that and particularly being a woman in this field. Mina: Early on I really did not see any difference between a woman and a man in the field. It was later on that I realized that there are differences. What I think a key to anybody’s success, regardless of the gender is to be passionate about what you’re doing and having that confidence and throughout the year keeping that in mind really helped me. Comments by others and challenges really did not affect my career path. I think this is really key especially for women…they really need to do much better than a man in order to get the same recognition or ya know…achieve the same level of success. Well the emphasis in high school was math. I chose that because that was the strongest path - or the most challenging path a student could take at that time. Even at that time I wanted to get into the Medical field. But, it was during my BS degree and when I started taking labs that I had the opportunity to start working with microorganisms - that was the time when I could really feel it was the turning point for me. The microbial world had fascinated me…things that we cannot see but at the same time have a tremendous effect on our health. BMWOC: How important do you think it is for more people to get into this line of work particularly when it comes to immunization, microbiology, and all of the things you find to be passionate in? Mina: I think it is very important. We really need more students. We really need our next generation to be enrolled in STEM related education; in particular, females - that is a must and to be at the forefront of research and discovery that is critical. But one of the challenges that I see for students is the interested during middle school and later on. I don’t know if I would say that they lose interest, but they do not stay in STEM. I think it is because they do not know what is available to them and I think it is very important to educate them at a young age. Show them what they can do with a degree in STEM. BMWOC: So Mina, tell us about your organization Integrated Pharma Services. I know that you mentioned a little bit earlier that you started that organization, but talk to us about how you began that journey, who you serve, and what you do there. Mina: Integrated Pharma Services was established as a contract research organization. We do research and development testing for all collaborators and their technologies that they want to take to the next level, and what do I mean by that? That could be a drug or a new antibiotic. We do testing in the laboratory to demonstrate, for example, that an antibiotic can kill a certain class of

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STEM EDUCATORS organism. We also do a lot of biofilm testing and work with a number of medical devices. In addition to that, there are some products - although one of them that we are doing we are attempting to mature and bring out for human use, there are some products that are commercially available, they are even FDA approved. Occasionally we do more testing on them so that the clinicians look at the results and understand how this technology works so it’s not only for products that are in development but for post-market also. I also have a strong internship program, I have supported a number of students from local colleges, and I’m hoping that the internship in my lab will have some sort of impact on their career since I know that mentorship is critical for the next generation. I believe that STEM is important for men and women, but with women, it’s different. Often with women, when they wanted to advance their education, there is an aspect that I have seen repeatedly and that is that they wanted to contribute to society and that they have a career path that has a clear social purpose. BMWOC: I’m glad that you are opening your doors to allow students to come in and learn from you, which is very, very important in terms of mentorship. So, speaking of that, how would someone go about getting a mentorship with your organization? Do they go to a website and fill out a form, or do they contact you? Mina: It depends if they are from local colleges, we have internship programs with certain community colleges and other organizations. We actually had an intern from University of Maryland who was a Master's degree student and she was the science teacher and that was really quite exciting for me because she got the hands-on. I’m hoping that the training that she was provided is actually being taken and used for teaching her classes. One of the things that I think a lot of students in middle school or even high school need for science classes is for it to be more exciting. Learning about new human diseases, new technologies, and things like that into classes will help keep students in the STEM field. Anne: Absolutely, absolutely… Mina: Whoever is interested, simply contact me! (laugh) BMWOC: That’s right, contact Mina because what I was going to also ask you If you could give someone maybe two or three pieces of advice about going into your particular field, starting with Microbiology and leading all the way up to R&D; and they are coming out of school with a scientific degree, what advice would you give them to keep them encouraged while they are going through this journey? Mina: Going through the journey, I think the purpose is helping mankind and that by itself is sufficient. Succeeding is a different thing right? We all want to help others but succeeding - first of all there has to be that interest and a passion as well as not giving up and having confidence. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of networking and knowing people in your field so that will open a (hopefully) successful career path. Visit during the 2019 BMWOC Podcast season to listen to the full interview.

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Dr. Elliott Heflin, Jr., RealityTech, LLC My college education started at University of Milwaukee. After my first year, I transfer to Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi where I completed my Undergraduate studies in Industrial Technology/Computer Technology and continue my Masters degree also at the same institution in Technology Education. And a few years later I attend the University of Phoenix to earn my Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership/Educational Technology.

My passion is technology and the love severing students and teacher no matter what background, I just love teaching; there is no greater gift you can give someone than an education.

I am involved in STEM in many different facets. I host STEM Conferences here in the State of Georgia. I am also an Independent Contractor (course facilitator) and Education Consultant (Cross-Curricular Instruction), I also teach students Python, Scratch programming language and Robotics, Drones, at public and private schools.

Dr. Natoshia Anderson, Smart STEM, LLC

Dr. Anderson, STEM Program Director for the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta and CEO of Smart STEM, LLC has a genuine love of teaching and learning and is fully vested in the advancement of STEM Education. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Southern Polytechnic State University. She went on earn an MBA with a specialization in Marketing in 2006 and a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership in 2010 from the University of Phoenix. Her dissertation is entitled, “An Analysis of African American Gifted Girls’ Achievements in Mathematics and Science Classes.” She worked as a Mechanical Design Engineer for eight years before entering the world of education.

As a Mechanical Design Engineer, she was charged with designing HVAC, piping, plumbing, and fire alarm systems for business, educational, and military installations all throughout the Southeastern states. She has also worked with outreach organizations (SWE and ASME) and clubs to increase awareness of STEM and specifically engineering opportunities for minority youth. While teaching high school math, she started Homework Help for Parents. This Saturday program assisted parents in being able to help their student(s) in mathematics at home. The program gave parents simple tips and refreshers on simple mathematic techniques and procedures. …Continue on Page 26

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Available on Amazon 25 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

STEM EDUCATORS She continues works with the Department of Education in STEM Certification for schools across the state and has been instrumental in the development of professional development materials for teachers.

Kenyatta Powers, Chief Information Officer Department of Human Services, Maryland Kenyatta Powers is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the Department of Human Services (DHS) in Maryland State Government. Kenyatta has served DHS for over 20 years as both a consultant and an employee in several different leadership positions. As CIO, she functions as a senior-level technology executive combining project management, technical expertise, and business proficiency to develop, execute, and manage strategic, statewide technology projects for the Department.

She is also a speaker and a mentor with a focus on motivation, Guiding Principles in Technology, Professional Development, and Leadership. She is an advocate for exposing women, children, and the underrepresented to the field of Computer Science and Technology. She aims to increase the number of women and minorities in the digital space by empowering them to become innovators in STEM and by providing resources and opportunities to learn about computer programming and engineering.

In addition to being a mentor in Women in Technology (WiT) and the Departments Mentor Program, Kenyatta consistently mentors and encourages her staff to partake in technological advancements. She spearheaded the Project Management Methodology Transformation initiative, which transformed the entire Department from Waterfall to the Agile Methodology. This allowed her to present learning and advancement opportunities for her staff to grow and learn the new methodology as well as the new technology in the Departments Modernization Project.

Kenyatta is also a contributor to the Computer Science Education and Professional Development Findings Report, which was requested by Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan. The report provides recommendations to help create innovative and sustainable ways to address gender and racial disparities in the STEM and IT fields. One of the primary goals is to identify disparity gaps, and work with organizations that engage the underrepresented to determine what’s needed to close the disparity gap. She is also a member of several Executive Information Technology (IT) Advisory Boards and was recently recognized for Outstanding Leadership in Information Technology. Kenyatta is also a leader in ministry and her passion for empowering and supporting Community Development initiatives through ministry assignments has made her a staple in the community.

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Ingrid Long, iLong2Desyn, LLC My work is my praise. Whether I’m painting a canvas or crafting special fabrics, the goal is not only to provide an aesthetically pleasing product, but something that stimulates or empowers your artistic self. My relationship with art began when I saw my first abstract painting in my stepdad’s shop. It was a large painting of what appeared to be a disfigured blue woman. I clearly recall staring at the painting, wondering what her story could be. I was even more fascinated that the artwork was what most people would have considered a flawed image. My immediate thoughts were, “I wish I could do something like that.” I loved how the artist created their own rules of what defined perfection and I dreamed of doing that too. Art has always offered a great source of enjoyment for me. I dabbled with arts and crafts growing up, but I never took any classes aside from prerequisite courses. It wasn’t until the early 2000’s that I decided to buy supplies to develop pieces of work. I wanted art for my home and disliked the options I saw in retail shops. After sharing my work with friends and associates, I was introduced to other creative artists like me, one of which hosted my first art showing in 2009. I found that creating art was a healthy outlet for my thoughts, feelings, and colorful visions. My goal is to create art that will touch others the same way the painting of the blue woman touched me. My themes are inspired by strong emotions, be it love, family, my faith or life in general. Currently, I paint with acrylics on canvas using varied brush or palette strokes, based upon the level of intensity I wish to portray. For instance, one of my favorite paintings, “Queen” represents the silent powerful strength of my mother. I typically use more fluid strokes for emotion; but for that painting, I used short, precise strokes instead to show the strength behind her beauty. I enjoy making beautiful things, so I am willing to use any medium to achieve that effect. I have learned so many things on my art journey. 27 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

VISUAL ARTS 1. Don’t be afraid to color outside the lines! Be daring and try new colors. 2. Be authentic. Discover your own style. 3. Most importantly, be true to yourself. True happiness comes from doing what you love and are passionate about. I have always loved art. It only makes sense that I would create it for myself and others.

Monique Howard, Felicity by Monique Jenean, LLC

Monique Howard is a Writer, Vision Board Artist and emerging entrepreneur. After graduating from college and joining the workforce, she experienced periods of depression and anxiety, which lead her to start a blog in July of 2017. Since then, Felicity by Monique Janean, LLC has evolved into providing inspirational concepts and activities through vision board classes, workshops, and digital products that teach strategies on how to overcome problems and create solutions. Teaching others to develop healthy and creative ways to express their thoughts, achieve their dreams, and ultimately create their own happiness. She stresses the importance of having your vision mapped out in order to nurture it daily as each day presents new opportunities for our dreams to manifest.

Felicity originally came to me as the title for a college project - a magazine prototype and I just have not been able to part with the name since. The content found in printed publications are like hidden treasures. Filled with inspiration and reminders that each day presents new opportunities for us to keep creating new experiences. Vision Boards allow you to be creative without searching for perfection to create custom, unique designs of your own that reflect your goals. Having your vision visually mapped out in front of you helps you remain focused and motivated as you work harder towards your dreams. Take pride in it and ultimately to never be afraid to explore beyond your comfort zone - it is here where you will find the most strength. 28 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

ARTS – CREATIVE MUSIC Jason Little, Singer / Performer St. Louis native Jason Little was naturally drawn to a more soulful sound. Growing up, his musical influences ranged from Charlie Wilson to Donny Hathaway performers with distinct sounds and down home flavor. Jason always knew he would have a spot in the music industry.

Jason Little is a former member of the St. Louis group, Ol’ Skool, which was discovered by Keith Sweat. And under the direction of Sweat, the group went on to deliver the hit single, Am I Dreamin; which also featured Keith Sweat and the sensational sounds of the all female group Xscape, which placed Ol’ Skool on the national map, and from there a myriad of opportunities came Jason Little’s way. Jason has appeared in magazines such as VIBE, Sister to Sister, Word Up, and Black Beat, and also made appearances at MTV and BET. In 2004, Jason Little relocated to the busy streets of New York City, which provided him the opportunity to work on his solo career. Jason found himself as part of a once in a lifetime, open audition for the hit-maker Carl Thomas. Thomas was in search of members for an act he was putting together, and welcomed Jason into the group. Producer Troy Taylor; now well acclaimed for his collaborations with Trey Songz, produced a track for the group. Jason then joined Trey Songz on tour, providing backup that eventually lead him to opportunities to open for Trey Songz. Jason Little worked the promo circuit performing at such events as the Cingular Back to School Tour and the Russ Parr Bus Tour. Jason has appeared on Soul Train and Showtime at the Apollo as Trey Songz backup singer.

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ARTS – CREATIVE MUSIC Pastor Steven LeMarr Turner “The Music Man” I started playing classical music at age four. I was born into a musical family. My Mother, the Late A. M. Turner, had the 1st. Radio Choir to sing in Maryland, and I sang on the choir and played for them totaling 14 years. I have traveled with the "Bells of Joy,” which is a Gospel quartet group that traveled I the U.S. performing on programs with the: Williams Brothers, Doc Mckenzie & the Gospel Hi-Lites, and the Angelic Gospel Singers. In 1994, I got the vision to start an: On-Call" Gospel Music Service supplying churches with musicians for church programs in a Temp agency format. It has been running for 23 years and still strong. In 2000, I started my own band called The Praise Unlimited Christian Jazz Band, nominated for a "Newsome Gospel Award” for Best New Group. The same year, I became the Executive Producer of the "Artist-N-Unity" Radio Outreach as an Artist Advocate. In 2006-2008 moved to Radio One calling it "The Praise Unlimited Radio Outreach Hour.

In 1997, I began promoting local Gospel artists in "Community Concerts for Causes" such as Diabetes Awareness & American Cancer Society and feeding the poor, widows and the homeless. Presently, I am still playing the Hammond B3 /Digital Keyboards for churches in the DMV region. I have also organized Gospel Concerts for the FBI, Sam's Club Inc., MCEA, and many governmental agencies. As Pastor of Destiny Changers Deliverance Center started in 2013, I created "Street Revivals" featuring Gospel Artists while my group served as the "House Band" taking Gospel to the streets of Baltimore. In 2017, I released my 1st. CD under my stage name "LaMarr"…"Restoration 2017" with Original songs: Serve & Worship and Lord Your Worthy. My mission is best described by a Pastor I played for that was closing his church. I asked him "What do I do now?" He responded: "I release you to be a "Minister of Music" to the world. That is my intent and my true purpose in life. 30 BMWOC | Jan. – Mar. 2019

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT Tilern De Bique turned her brokenness into freedom by mastering resilience to reinvent, and elevate herself and craft message of self-love, selfdefinition, self-efficacy and personal power. What drives her is change. Her passion lies in helping others break free of the limitations of the expectations of society, others, and self. Having experienced and overcame many challenges, Tilern’s approach to her work focuses helps her clients rediscover and embrace their essence as a tool of empowering them to define and live life on their own terms with purpose for optimal fulfillment and impact. As the Director of Thrive to Flourish Life Coaching, Tilern who was born on the Caribbean Island of St. Vincent, and is based in London helps those who are tired of knowing there is more to life and themselves and do not knowing how to get to it. Through a combination of coaching, empowerment, accountability and support she helps women and men break free of confusion, limitation and fear to live life on their own terms your terms with purpose for fulfillment and impact.

With multiple pieces of work on the go, Tilern publish her first book Full Circle: Reconnecting to and Embracing Self in 2018. With Full Circle: My Path to Personal Freedom expected in Spring 2019.

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BMWOC Magazine - TEDx, STEM and the Arts  

In this issue, we focus on what it takes to become a TEDx speaker, getting back to basics with STEM education and the Artis. Exclusive Inter...

BMWOC Magazine - TEDx, STEM and the Arts  

In this issue, we focus on what it takes to become a TEDx speaker, getting back to basics with STEM education and the Artis. Exclusive Inter...

Profile for alstntec