communiqué Magazine Issue 3

Page 1

m a g a z i n e



O C TO B E R 2020

Angie Stone

Slaying the Airwaves with Decades of Soul

Contents Table of


Letter From The Editor


Customer Service Matters

From Fargo to Nicodemus


Why I Stayed and How it Almost Killed Me

Forged in the Fire


Beauty and The Face Mask Beast!!!


Economic Development with Passion


The Power of Influence


It’s Been a Long Journey… This Book Thing


Never Give Up On Love


Leading with Passion


In The Beginning There Was Craftism – and forever will be.


A Lyrical Artist Reborn


The Deep Dynamic Soul of Angie Stone


Trouble Don’t Last Always


Reminiscing with Roosevelt Boles, Jr.


Pearls in the Pandemic


Stacey Henry Carr - The Real Butterfly Effect

5 8

Meet Dr. Anita Davis-DeFoe


Ray Leonard, Jr. Says #KnowBetterDoBetter


Chief Flavor Maker


A Natural Choice


Music of the Mind and Heart

The Hope Effect


75 78

The Power and Tenacity of Friendship


Toy Addington: International Business Coach



The First Lady of Sax

Cheryl A. Pullins, The Global Branding Expert

Daphna Ziman, Founder and President of CinĂŠmoi Network


85 87

Thanks for Making Me Wait


Mc"CRAVERS" BBQ is a Toledo, OH Favorite!


Letter From the Editor communiqué Magazine is an international publication that celebrates people from around the world. Everyone has a story. communiqué Magazine takes the message out of the story to deliver quality, relatable articles that inspire, teach, and encourage all readers, including children. We pause for a moment. We need peace, understanding, and kindness in our world. In this edition it is my goal to share messages of tenacity, superior talent, resilience, and longevity in business among some of the world’s greatest people. From cover to cover you can expect engaging articles that reveal beautiful messages of love, life, and friendship. We are proud to feature Angie Stone. First, let me say this, South Carolina produces some phenomenal people, and I am honored to see my fellow South Carolinian, Angie Stone grace the cover of this month’s issue. This article takes you back to the beginning of a career that Angie started as a teenager and she has never stopped creating her legacy in the business. From radio, to television, to film and theatre, Angie Stone is still slaying the industry. We are giving you a special feature story on the fabulous Daphna Ziman, the Founder and President of Cinémoi, an acclaimed television network that focuses on classic films, premium content, documentaries, and special fashion and film. Ray Leonard, Jr., Edwin Lee Gibson, and Cheryl Pullins are some of our other feature stories. SIGRUN BRAGA Guðrúnardóttir stops by with a beautiful story from Iceland. We have so many more articles of great stories, beautiful words of encouragement, and insight into some of our favorite topics such as wellness, customer service, and the power of friendship. Thank you for taking time to read communiqué Magazine. This Issue is dedicated to Breast Cancer survivors and to the men and women that have survived Domestic Violence Abuse. Life is a gift. With appreciation, C.





Edwin Lee Gibson

Actor and Dramatist

From Fargo to Nicodemus written by Joey Lorraine “My Lady. My lady...” a line that cut through the soul, like Shakespearean poetry. Edwin Lee Gibson created his own Romeo in his one man show, playing at a small black box theatre in New York City in the early 2000’s. His presence was excruciatingly palpable; he needed no Juliet. Although I have no clear memory of what his one man show was really all about, his performance overflowed with love and loss, and made me feel the tragedy of having an infinite human soul trapped within a helpless body. Having performed at least one play a year since 1980, Mr. Gibson has 103 theatre productions under his belt, not to mention several film and television roles ranging from Law and Order to independent film. His repertoire is as vast as a Colorado forest, but hailing from Colorado myself, I never thought of him as having a cowboy spirit. I knew he was from Houston Texas, yet he didn't seem particularly southern to me. When he confessed of his fascination with westerns and cowboy culture I was taken aback. It rekindled memories of a Black cowboy visiting my second grade class at Greenlee elementary School, a school in Denver's inner city where I had been bussed to from the suburb of Bear Valley. I have vague memories of his cowboy hat, leather vest, mahogany toned skin, and heavy looking chapslike a character straight out of Bonanza or the Lone Ranger. He would share stories of the history of cowboy life, emphasizing that Black cowboys not only existed, but played a central role in cowboy culture and American history. Little did I know I was in fact receiving special education. Now children from Bear Valley are no longer bussed, and this kind of historical education has likely been lost. History still waits to be discovered, however, just like new land. The cowboy spirit is like the artist who longs to explore uncharted territory and go

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beyond distant horizons. I wasn’t surprised to hear of

and November. Although it’s clear Mr. Gibson has

Mr. Gibson's adventures in Europe and his work with

unequivocally claimed his territory as a thespian, as a

legendary theatre auteur Peter Brook, who helped

dramatist there is much more territory to be explored...

Mr. Gibson unleash untapped potential through

Nicodemus Kansas, in particular.

fresh characters with multiple dimensions. Naturally this path likely led Mr. Gibson to take writing more

As the first post civil war black town in the west,

seriously. In 2016 he received a Masters Degree in

Nicodemus is the subject of Mr. Gibson’s first television

Screenwriting. “I succumbed to it”, he says. “Stories

series he wrote and remains committed to polishing. “

were flowing out of me”, probably like the poetry I

I take issue with history in some respects”, Mr. Gibson

experienced when I first saw him perform.

says. Beneath this lies a fascination with the beauty of ownership and new territory- a ‘homestead’, if you

In the words of western author Gary Benson:

will- a promised land for African Americans. Indeed,

“Cowboys are not the simple folks they project and

Mr. Gibson will have rich and timely material to work

deep thinking often takes place behind the unblinking

with, as Vice President Pence may have ties to Daniel

eyes”. Mr. Gibson has much to say behind unblinking

Pence, Nicodemus descendant and husband of 9th

eyes, particularly about his own history as a Black man

US Vice President Richard M. Johnson’s daughter,

in America.

Imogene Malivna Johnson (Pence) who’s mother was Julia Chin, Mr. Johnson’s common law ‘negro’ wife, as

His unique perspective fills the blank space between

she was ⅛ African American.

the Lone Ranger I had grown up with on t.v. and and the Black cowboy who once gave elementary school

As a bonafide Black Western,

presentations in the inner city of Denver Colorado.

currently in the pipeline for a greenlight from a top

“Nicodemus” is

tier television showrunner. As Nicodemus descendant Throughout the cowboy’s adventure, just as the actor’s

Norma Switzer explains: “Northwest Kansas as an

journey, sometimes out of nowhere a man can strike

all Black town was not taught in schools”. The Black

gold. Soon after arriving in Los Angeles to pound the

cowboy who visited my elementary school may have

pavement for pilot season,

been from Nicodemus, I’ll never know...but moving

Mr. Gibson received a call from his agent about a role in

forward , it looks like thanks to Mr. Gibson, the legacy

the upcoming season of renowned Hulu series Fargo.

of Nicodemus may indeed reach its rightful place on

His character’s name? “Happy”...the story is set in the

the map.

50’s among gangster life in Kansas City, and features Chris Rock. Joey Lorraine is a New York City based content creator His character comes to Happy for undercover help,

and dance artist.

and let’s just say from there, things get interesting. Mr.

Gibson’s featured episodes will likely run in October 7

FORGED IN THE FIRE This is What I Was Made For

written by Blaise Hunter Have you ever felt beaten up by the storms of life? Have you ever pleaded with God to make it stop? This is my journey of transforming from a firefighter to a mighty weapon. My name is Blaise Hunter. I am an author, international speaker, award winning advocate, fertility expert, 2020 Women of Inspiration award nominee, mother of purpose and breaker of chains. For most of my life, I believed the lie I was unworthy and had no purpose. I allowed the fires of life to destroy me rather than strengthen me. I resented the flames and questioned why I was facing such devasting blows. Then everything shifted when I came across a quote by Sherrilyn Kenyon. “Strength through adversity. The strongest steel is forged by the fires of hell. It is pounded and struck repeatedly before it's plunged back into the molten fire. The fire gives it power and flexibility, and the blows give it strength. Those two things make the metal pliable and able to withstand every battle it's called upon to fight.” Like a sword, this is what I had to endure to harness my power. We all have a unique destiny. When we face the fire, breakthrough begins. The flames burn away the things that no longer serve us. I needed to learn the flames weren’t there to obliterate me but rather shape me. Self-hatred was a fire I fought tirelessly. I was stuck in a pattern of emotional cutting. Low self-esteem followed me like a lost puppy throughout my childhood and clung to me as a woman. I allowed it to chase me because deep down I believed I wasn’t good enough. I was at war with myself.

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The ember of low self-worth grew into a fire of illness. I developed a disease called Churg-Strauss. For years I tried to put out the flames, but nothing could stop the wildfire inside my body. “You have an auto-immune disease, where your body physically attacks itself.” “Do you think there’s a link with your disease and the fact that you hate yourself so much?” Those profound words made by a friend were the catalyst to me walking through the fire and becoming my own hero. Self-hatred is gradual and eats away at your soul. There wasn’t one major event that made me feel unworthy, it was many moments built up over time. The traumas and tragedies scorched my voice and hammered away my power. I lost myself and misplaced my purpose. It all began when my house burned down when I was 17 years old. This was my first taste of the molten heat. An inferno stole the structure of my life and left me feeling unsafe. For years I would choke on the emotional smoke. I didn’t know how to deal with this traumatic event, and it started to chip away at my spirit. I was lost and needed comfort. So, I sought refuge in men who in turned abused me emotionally, mentally, and physically. Each relationship chained me more to the idea I am not loveable. Then at 22, my dad couldn’t see his worth and decided to run from his pain. He faked his own death. He made us believe he drowned in the frigid waters. Hundreds of people scoured the shore searching for him. We dragged the river for three days before accepting he was gone. The flames grew. The most important man in my life abandoned me. This devasting event destroyed me and left me with third degree burns and ugly scars. In a twist of fate, he couldn’t go through with it. My father returned home. Only now can I see how incredibly brave he was for coming back. However back then, we were filled with humiliation. On the outside we were one happy family but, on the inside, we were broken. The fire of depression branded us to be social lepers. We were left to feel ashamed of a man battling his demons and faced the stigma of mental health issues. I masked up my pain and internalized it. I punished myself. I loathed the heat and resented the blows. I withdrew further from the fire. However, when we don’t deal with our emotions and learn to accept the flames, they will eventually deal with you. Two years later I developed this life-threatening disease. The burns consumed me, and I couldn’t see through the smouldering maze. I felt if I could project perfection and mask up my agony, then I could survive it. The problem with that mentality is, you will never thrive. Enduring the beatings, the heat, and the flames shattered me even more.


In 2013 I received a ray of hope when my baby girl was born. She was the light that pierced the darkness and showed me what unconditional love means. God knew I needed her love to bring me to the other side of hell. I fight through the flames for her. Three years later, I experienced my first miscarriage. Lies flooded my mind again and I thought agony was my life sentence. I spiralled into a deep depression and thought my baby girl would be better off without me. I was an unworthy woman and now an unworthy mother. Each devasting punch caused me to retreat. I still couldn’t see these blows were there to help me. Then a defining moment changed the trajectory of my life. I went to a church meeting where a woman healing minister was going to be, and I felt drawn to go. I said a prayer to God, “If there’s any hope for my life, please God, give me a sign.” In the middle of the service, the woman stopped and said someone was drawing on her so much she couldn’t continue. She walked over to me and told me, “God hears your cry. He sees your pain. The tears will end. Joy will come and you will write a book about it.” That was my sign! Hope reminded me my life wasn’t over, and I still had purpose. The fire was there to build resilience and power within. What I didn’t know is that I needed that sign of hope to carry me through more traumas and torment. I ended up having a collapsed lung while pregnant. I needed an emergency chest tube and a three-hour ambulance ride. I battled for my life and fought to keep my baby alive. My body couldn’t hang on though – another miscarriage. The flames of grief burned deep. This time was different though. Instead of resisting the firestorm, I stepped further into the blaze. This led me to write through my pain. I took those encouraging words from that minister and I birthed my book. Another blow was about to test my commitment to resiliency yet again. While writing my book, I experienced a third miscarriage. This was my transformation. I knew I could push past the suffering and rise through the ashes. This is what I was made for. I had set out what I wanted to do. Even though I had struggled to birth another baby, I was not barren. I began to birth my purpose and a Heroine was born. I realized if I hadn’t gone through all those fires, I wouldn’t have ever authored my book and rewritten my narrative. Heroine: Embrace Your Flaws & Own Your Awesome is the ultimate love story that embodies women empowerment.

My story inspires people to draw their swords and breathe fire on this world. It shines a light on the issues women face and shares how to find freedom in the flaws. Through this remarkable message of self-love, imperfectly perfect motherhood, and fertility struggles, I demonstrate how to lean into the pain and let it become your gift to the world. Resiliency is the greatest legacy to leave behind. After I released the book, it became evident this was my path. Women joined my Heroine Movement and we smashed the glass ceiling on taboo topics. I began speaking on stages around the world and in schools. Vulnerability is what connects the shred of collective experience that strengthens the line. I started out to find my purpose and it ended up becoming a movement. From my pain I birthed The Footprints Infertility & Pregnancy Loss Support Initiative. I give a voice to parents and make our angel babies count. For the first time in my life I let people see me. I let them see through me, and what they saw wasn’t perfect, but it was heroine. I have risen from the ashes and I breathe fire for me and for my daughter. I went through

the fires of hell to go get the keys and free myself from the prison I was dying in. I recovered the keys to unlock the shackles holding women back. Now I break silence barriers on forbidden issues and cause positive change. I brought myself back from the dead. I am still walking out my healing and believing for my baby, but I stand tall upon the ashes. My identity and my purpose were fashioned by the flames. I no longer question the blows, instead I welcome them. Because this is what I was made for. I am strength. I am swift. I am flexible. I am mighty. I choose life not death. I am Blaise Hunter. “She laughs at fear, afraid of nothing; She does not shy away from the sword. The quiver rattles against her side, along with the flashing spear and lance. In frenzied excitement she eats up the ground; she cannot stand still when the trumpet sounds.” Job 39:22 To learn more about Blaise Hunter and her Heroine Movement, visit

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M A RT I N Derrick O. Martin is a seasoned, results-oriented professional with vast experience in economic and workforce development, strategic planning, manufacturing, and marketing. Martin is the Managing Partner for Sugchairo, Moi, & Martin, a multi-faceted boutique economic advisory consulting firm whose niche is developing strategies to drive revenue, increase organizational performance, and assist organizations in optimally delivering on their missions. Prior to forming this firm, Martin served multiple roles for General Motors, first as a Systems Engineer and then as a Project Manager, Program Manager, and finally as a Manufacturing Manager.

In 2008, he transitioned

across the country to his native state of Arizona, where he championed business development for over 400,000 businesses in Maricopa County’s Workforce Development Division. He was tasked with managing workforce and economic development issues such as creating talent pipelines, positioning businesses for sustainability, and developing specialized training programs. In 2012, Martin was recruited by New Orleans with a mission to rebuild the city from the damage of Hurricane Katrina.

As a Senior Member of the New Orleans

Business Alliance (NOLABA), his concentration was geared toward business retention, expansion, and attraction. Martin’s experience also includes roles in national marketing campaigns and has produced positive results for companies such as General Motors, Verizon, the Coca-Cola Company, and other private and public entities. Martin currently serves on several boards, including those of CafÊ Reconcile, United Way of SELA, Covenant


House, Crescent City Schools, and Boy Scouts of America,

didn’t really understand in what capacity until I stepped into

all of which serve youth and families. Always inspired by

workforce development. After spending 3-4 years helping

his grandmother, Mittie Mae Stoglin, Martin personally

individuals find work and launch their careers, I stumbled

replicated her willingness to give to others while trusting

into economic development, which I later learned fueled

God to take care of his needs, wants, and desires. His

the economy.

grandmother’s innate positive qualities drives Martin’s desire

economic development would afford me the ability to help

to have deep and lasting friendships while being a listening

create jobs within the community and essentially change the

ear and a shoulder to cry on. Martin’s external strength is a

lives of families for the better, I was all in.

When I realized that pursuing a career in

trait drawn from his mother, who inspired him to display outer strength to carry a firm exterior that lets onlookers

How is your current business venture different?

know, “He is about his business.” Martin’s mother has “single

current work with Sugchairo, Moi, & Martin is aligned

parent” strength gained from raising four children. Martin

with economic development from an cost-effective

learned at an early age not to become mired in the realm of

empowerment perspective. Rather than working directly

“pity and doubt,” but rather try to make things happen and

with large corporations and multiple branches of the

not simply stand still and “hope” that things change without

government, my company focuses on empowering small

putting in effort to achieve success.

businesses. In a collaborative effort with fellow economic


developers, professional organizations, and interest groups, Martin’s stepfather showed him how “humility and dignity”

we support the health and growth of small business across

work together as a positive attribute. Entering his life at

the U.S. Specific areas of support range from business

an early age, Martin’s stepfather “never failed” him. The

retention to expansion by offering loans, guidance, and

humility of a loving stepfather came through, as well as acting

growth opportunity strategies.

as “protector and provider.” Another foundational influence for Martin was his junior college coach, John Avianantos.

What are your hopes and dreams going forward? I am hopeful

Coach Avianantos never shied away from helping Martin

to gain traction on our new initiative (AMERICA ENGAGE)

during turbulent times, and he “completely understood that

to grow small businesses, which has an essentially positive

I could be whatever I wanted to be. He reminded me at 18

impact on neighborhoods, communities, cities, states, and

years old that I was a black kid in America. Coach helped

ultimately the nation. We at AMERICA ENGAGE believe

me understand that systemic racism was real. I also learned

our model of economic empowerment will eventually begin

from Coach that I had to look the part that represents

trending, causing other companies, entities, and institutions

excellence. I learned to have positive social interactions in

to follow suit.

a manner that was different than what I was accustomed to.” With a foundation of familiar influences that primed

Martin is a former student athlete who played football at

Martin for success, Communique magazine questioned

the University of Arkansas and holds a Bachelor of Arts

him about his motivation to focus on a career in economic

in Communications from Jackson State University, along


with certificates in Project Management from George Washington University and Six Sigma Studies from

What motivated you to work in economic development?

Kettering University, formerly General Motors Institute.

After an engaging career with General Motors working

Following college, Martin was able to pursue a career in

in the capacity of a project manager, program manager,

the NFL. Martin is married with three children and enjoys

systems engineer, and manufacturing manager, I moved

mentoring and advising both collegiate and professional

across the country to start a family. During this turn in my

athletes on life after sports, working out, and playing chess.

career, I knew that my calling was to serve the community. I


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It’s Been a Journey …this Book Thing! written by Nanette M. Buchanan, Author

the stories I write highlight real issues my imagined characters experience. A common phrase I hear from my readers is, “You wrote my story!” It’s uplifting to know my writing has given many an emotional ride, a reason to turn each page, buy the next novel, or refer me to another anxious reader. After retiring, I retreated to what I thought would be my escape but turned into a business. My novels and writings led to I Pen Magazine. This quarterly magazine highlights new and seasoned entrepreneurs and authors. The magazine gives them an opportunity to expose their business and products through an interview and or promotional ad.

It wasn’t until I completed the writing of my fourth (maybe fifth) novel that I discovered my books didn’t fit into any existing genre. They had romance, suspense, mystery, erotic moments, and, well...a bit of “ooooowweeee.” When anyone asked, I would explain that each crossed many of the known genres and for good reason. Simply put, “Reality Fiction” is where they should be listed. This explanation often raises a brow (or two) followed by numerous questions. Why “Reality Fiction?” Unlike today’s “reality shows”,

“Let’s Talk About It” has become a forum for various topics on my weekly podcast with Joann Cox. This book thing has evolved. I had to learn how to promote and market myself−from building a website and having cute giveaways to publishing, editing, webinars, and investments in my business as an author. Being an author is a full-time job and one that was etched in my life from the beginning. I always enjoyed English classes, reading books from other authors and, though my friends considered advanced classes a bore, I loved them. I began writing poetry during high school and college. I penned and collected my poems and children’s stories, never giving a thought of publishing them. Everything changed after my mother’s death when I found writings I had written to her during my younger years.

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Poems, thoughts, and letters of communication she held over time that I found in her personal belongings. It struck me strange as she would always deny my authorship of the pieces I shared with her. After repeatedly being told that I was not the author of the poems I wrote and included in cards I gave her, I simply stopped sharing my writings with her. Perhaps that’s why I am pleased to know my writing is a peaceful, yet inspirational plateau for others. I can’t recall when my writing began, but I know I’ve always had a love for writing. As a published author of eleven books, I share the following tips, especially for writers and aspiring authors: • Relationships with family, lovers, and others− good, bad, and ugly−can be told without exposing those who are guilty or those who have been hurt. • Names are changed to protect the innocent, but no one is innocent when we talk about untold secrets, lies within relationships, betrayal, identity changes, attempted suicide, character ratings, abuse, murder, and personal growth. • Throughout the book, allow readers to experience the unpolished version of reality. In my books, the problems are told as gritty as they may be and the characters−whether protagonists or antagonists−reflect real emotions while the stories go deeper into what is often the reader’s shared reality.


• Your story’s climax gives readers anticipation as they attempt to predict the outcome. Reality is different for each of us and the twists and turns within a well-developed storyline provide a pleasurable experience that keeps readers coming back for more. (After eleven books, I can attest to this truth.) I assume that many of us who use the power of the pen, adapt a bit of reality in our chapters. Reality keeps the reader turning pages for a pleasurable journey through the author’s view. The end goal is that the reader has an experience that not only keeps him or her turning the page, but compels him or her to share their enjoyment and encourage others to buy our books. It’s a journey for the author and the reader, but that is not my intention. My purpose and goals have changed over the years. I learned that we heal in many ways. My readers have shared that my books have been therapeutic and uncovered their embedded pain. I now understand “Reality Fiction” is more than leisure entertainment. I now speak to audiences about the pain I’ve penned, which includes my journey aka “my story.” I have traveled, even been to Paris, France while on this journey. We all have a story that is waiting to be penned. I look forward to speaking and sharing my works as I continue. Please join me, visit my website or contact me I’d love to hear from you.


LEADING written by Michelle Alene

In every generation there comes along a prodigy, a titan. Someone with so much raw magnetic energy it effects everyone around them. Kim Roundtree is one of those people. The meaning behind her brand “The Passionate CEO” is that the foundation of a CEO is built with passion. When a leader serves first, their actions come from a place of passion. She explained, “you can have goals, confidence, and smarts but without passion, it is not fun, and it is not enjoyable. Her belief is to let passion fuel your purpose. Kim works with people who have the faith to remove the top two passion killers, which are fear and failure, allowing them to package, price, and profit their services or products. She teaches people how to make money while they sleep by doing the work and sitting back and watching the system work for them. She also helps her clients establish the right mindset for business by getting them to experience failure sooner than later so they can hurry up and get it over with. She sets a timeframe to "be in our feelings"... then its time to wipe our eyes, put a smile on our face and let's get it! The thought of leaving a legacy for her daughter, Hannah Gabrielle Roundtree, inspires her and keeps her going. Leaving more than just money is important. Kim wants her to see her work ethic, how she persevered through doubt and unbelief... while knowing she can do anything. Everything Kim is today comes from her mother, Lula Briggs Galloway. She was the portrait of entrepreneurship. Kim was born and raised in San Jose, California. She went to school at St. Mary's College in Los Angeles and graduated from Sacramento State University with an undergraduate degree. She went on to earn her master's in Marriage and Family Therapy from Oral Robert's University. She currently resides in Harrisburg, a suburb of Charlotte, North Carolina. When asked about her success she attributes these 4 factors: • I offer as much value as I can before I begin selling to people. • I'm passionate about what I do for people. • I learn from my mistakes. • I share my mistakes with others. Lastly Kim would like to offer these 5 tips to entrepreneurs 1. Imagine yourself broke. 2. Take calculated risks. 3. Be someone's solution. 4. Keep it simple. 5. Speak up. Connect, network, and work with Kim! Visit Kim Roundtree’s website at

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A Lyrical Artist


Prince Original

in inner-city neighborhoods. From street cyphers to rap groups and going on tour with members from the Wu-Tang Clan, Prince Original’s lyrical presence could not be overlooked. Saadia White: Prince, tell us how you first got into rap. What is your backstory? Prince Original: Ok, that’s pretty simple. I grew up in the 80s so hip hop was always like a part of my life because I was always around it. Coming out in the streets with all the brothers that rhymed, I was around it, so I used to hear it a lot. Once I hit the teenage years, me and my boys started going out in the streets just rhyming. Going into the 90s, we actually started street cyphers and then I was taking it more serious.

written by Saadia White Hearing the voice on the other end of the phone, automatically reminded me of home. Prince Original, a native New Yorker, was born in the late 70s in the middle of an enigmatic formation of a culture that has taken this world by storm…hip hop. Prince Original, which is his legal name, is an Indie artist steadily making a name for himself in the underground world of rap. Prince, a product of the foster care system throughout most of his childhood, allowed music to be his turning point. In the 80s, hip hop was quickly becoming the cornerstone of the young adolescent black male voice


I started promotions around the late 90s. I started working with a professional Dee Jay named DJ J-Love from Queens. He was actually deejaying for Ghost Face Killa from the Wu-Tang Clan. Then I had the opportunity to be around Ghost Face Killa, going on tour with him and DJ J-Love. I had a chance to socialize more with hip hop itself; it was super inspirational when I met these superstars. SW: Before you got started, did you already have your name Prince Original? PO: Prince Original is my government name. My last name is Washington so it’s really Prisoner of War (he laughs). No, it's Prince Original Washington, but I have a song/album coming out called “P.O.W”, so Prince Original Washington is my actual government name. SW: What was the concept behind your first single/album release? And let me just be clear: that was “One Life to Live?” PO: Yes, that was, ma’am. My first single was “Sacrifice" and that song meant everything to me cause in life you have

to choose what you want, what you love to do, and you really have to go for it. It’s going to be a sacrifice; it’s going to be some things you will have to let go if you really want to do this. SW: So out of the songs that you produced thus far, which one is the most meaningful to you? PO: So, for me honestly, my new song “StressFree” happened at a time when we just learned of the coronavirus. It was a video I shot and there was a lot of pressure going on with the mask at that time. And even though we are still under this pandemic, this was during the early stages of it. So many people were stressed out, so we were really able to kind of express that in the song. SW: I sensed pain in some of your lyrics. Where did the pain come from? PO: My father at the time, he is gone now, he was involved in outside influences which basically distorted his judgment and caused a lot of problems with him and my mom which led to the scenario where the children had to be removed from the house. I was the oldest out of nine and we were placed in the foster care system. SW: How old were you when they removed you from your home? PO: Probably my first time was when I was about eight years old and then I went away for about two years and came back. Then I went back out at ten and I stayed from ten to sixteen and then I came back. So, you know, going through all of that gives you the space to create because you know you have to live life to get the experiences to write about. I really don’t even think the best of me has been delivered yet. I know it’s so much more I have in me, especially now that I am more mature as an artist and can deliver the message better. SW: What does the next level look like for you? PO: So, the next level for me would look like, honestly, me just being more free to deliver my music. That’s why I studied artists like Bob Marley, because he shows his songs are for a purpose. I’m not doing it for the financial gain or these corporations who will try to exploit me. I’m not in it for that; I can generate money on my own. That is how I’ve done it from the beginning and pretty much that’s how I intend to stay.

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Trouble Don’t Last Always

written by Corretta L. Doctor When all you know to do is pray, praying is what you do. It will get you through. Pennsylvania native, Charlise Smith, knows what life looks like through the eyes of a three-year-old child that witnessed her Mother being murdered right in front of her, within inches of what could have easily been Charlise’s own death place. Her life was spared. Not allowing fear to paralyze her future, Charlise jumped right into doing the work of establishing a legacy that is reminiscent of the love and compassion that her Mother, Willissae, was known for. Thus, the organization WAVE, an acronym for Willissae’s Agency for Vision and Empowerment, along with two other businesses, were founded by Charlise. Charlise Smith is a woman of many words, and undoubtedly she deserves a platform that allows her to scream ‘glory’ from her core. She has endured a world of undeserving trauma. She is a definite walking testimony and she preaches her story to encourage others that the hard road she walked could have just as well been them too, and even if it had been them, they too can survive anything. Charlise truly takes her trials and uses them for the betterment of people. Charlise paused with an emotional sigh as I congratulated 19

her for the organizational success of WAVE. Although Charlise is successful and is filled with her Mother’s undying spirit of loyalty, good service, and fair favor, we strive to help you see why Charlise knows she is appointed by a higher calling in this race to do the work she does. She is on a crusade to win against a community of people with a poverty-stricken mindset. She wants them to see everything that is in store for them to shift their thinking. We asked Charlise if she could talk to her Mother now, what would she say to Willissae? She spoke with a calm, level tone, and an evident lump in her throat as she told us these words, “Mother, if only you could see me now. Mom, I told you I would not let your name die, you protected me from that man that tried to hurt me in a most devastating way.” Many stories of rape and molestation unfold where young girls fight to get their parents to believe their cries for help. Mothers have been known to turn against their daughters in disbelief, and so many victims are belittled for coming forward against their accusers. Within 36 hours of discovering that her three-year-old child had been sexually traumatized by her husband, 25-year-old Willissae made the plan to save her only child from further abuse. With some phone calls, a few adjustments to her business matters, Willissae and toddler Charlise were planning

to head away from their Florida home, forever, to never return to the home nor husband that had hurt her baby in such a damning way. The moment of her departure became the moment of her death. The accused, Willissae’s husband, killed her and left poor Charlise there to watch her Mother slip into her eternal life, never to be seen alive again. As if that is not enough pain to carry, Charlise was soon to face the unthinkable tragedy, again. What we have learned is that Charlise works hard, and she serves from a place of pure desire to see lives improved. Somehow, pain found her even while she worked and walked in faith. She relies on her faith in everything she does. She does not take credit for her sustainment; she gives God full credit. “Coming from each stage is a fight. Sometimes you fall. My fall may not be your fall, I don’t pass judgment.” for her life. This is not what life was supposed to look like for a peaceful, hard working woman that loved her job and took pride in everything she done in the way of supporting those in communities of need. Charlise’s life took a prideful journey toward the pulpit in early 2011. Throughout her life, living lonely without a mother, not knowing her father, and having no siblings, Charlise never questioned God’s plan. There was no extension to her family tree, she was it. She did cry, she did stumble, but more than anything, she prayed about every decision she made. She lived right and overcame struggles some of us only read about. She always knew that there was something, a need to live and not die. Charlise went on to be licensed as a Minister in 2014 and in 2016 became an Ordained Elder. Charlise sings to the heavens, “There is a higher calling on your protection when you have faced death and trauma, yet were saved from each one”. Charlise Smith is without a doubt a phenomenal businesswoman and leaves no stones unturned in her quest to take her businesses to the next level. Her tragic beginning did not dictate a tragic ending. Charlise stands firm in her Mother’s legacy building and commits to continuing WAVE and all of her work to improve lives. In doing so she is focused on her endeavors to maximize her experience as a woman of God, a mentor, and a Transformation Business and Life Skills coach. Charlise is married; Charles is her husband and best friend. They live in Pennsylvania and both have adult children. Charlise has one beautiful grandchild, a lovely little girl that she holds close to her heart! In the coming months Charlise will be releasing her first book. Charlise Smith is available to counsel and strategize by appointment. Visit and Email to become a part of Charlise’s community of greatness! communiqué Magazine



s l r a e P

in the PANDEMIC written by Erica Anderson

For many of us the month of March 2020 posed a

irritant works its way into a particular species of

number of unexpected challenges to us as individuals

oyster, mussel, or clam. As a defense mechanism,

and families. Schools, businesses, restaurants, shopping

the mollusk secretes a fluid to coat the irritant. Layer

malls, and all of our favorite places to frequent began

upon layer of this coating is deposited on the irritant

to close one by one leaving many of us devastated and

until a pearl is formed.


Governors and Mayors across America

continued isolation , forced togetherness, and limited

began to implement quarantines. We were glued to our

mobility caused my family to form pearls in the midst

televisions in an effort to see portions of the outside

of an irritating condition or situation caused by the

world that we could no longer encounter safely. Our


Months of quarantine,

connections to the outside world became limited and we were forced to associate only with those within

Pearl number one was formed as we realized we could

our households. For many, this scenario presented

no longer take our random trips to the grocery store

very awkward moments for families who were not

whenever we felt like it. Meal planning became a

accustomed to spending quality time together. For my

thing and the entire family got involved. We literally

family it was the opposite. We discovered pearls in the

sat down as a family and determined our grocery


needs and wants and placed pick up orders from our local grocer. The planning also helped us to make

According to jewelers, pearls are formed when an

healthier meal and food choices as well. This became

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an opportunity for the family to get out of the house

grill. It also became a joy to pick up our favorite

and take much needed rides to the grocery store on a

restaurant meal, pop the trunk on our van and enjoy

bi-weekly basis.

an impromptu picnic in the park!

The second pearl was developed as we discovered that

Pearl number five came in discovering the state parks

exercise provided a boost to the immune system in

located in Georgia. When we were able to travel

addition to our daily vitamin supplements. Our local

freely, we typically vacationed near crowded beaches

gym membership was placed on hold, so we decided

or cities that contained water parks and amusement

to go for a walk every day. This not only helped us

parks. In an effort to stay socially distant, we took day

physically, but we found areas around our home to

trips to state parks that we had never seen or visited

walk that we had been overlooking for years. This

and even spent the night in a tree house less than 20

provided yet another opportunity for us to get out

miles from our home! The adventures that we have

of the house, socially distance ourselves from others

discovered during the pandemic have been endless

and spend quality time together. Our daily walks

and we have found treasured jewels in our family bond

fostered many conversations and we have continued

that have made us stronger as a unit. While we are not

this practice.

minimizing the devastation, the loss of life, and the changes that we have all faced during this pandemic,

Pearl number three was inspired by our local church

we have made a conscious decision to make the best of

closure. Our faith has always been a very integral part

what we have been presented with.

of our lives and assembling with other believers is a part of how we exercise our faith. Once we were no

We all face “pandemics� in our lives at some point. My

longer allowed to assemble, we started having our

charge to you is to develop a different perspective in

own Facebook Lives to discuss the Word of God with

the midst of chaos, unrest, and uncertainty. Allow the

others, and enjoyed family bible studies in our home.

irritants of life to become the driving force to produce

Going forward we have embraced the concept that

treasured pearls in your life, and the lives of those you

worship is not relegated to a building only, and we as


believers represent the church at large. We do however look forward to the time when we feel comfortable worshipping in the building again. Pearl number four was formed due to the closure of restaurants.

Many of the restaurants we often

frequented were closed due to the pandemic but still offered the curbside service as well as uncooked meals that you could take home to prepare. We started to enjoy picking up grass fed beef from our favorite restaurant and taking steaks and burgers home to


Nakia Jordan is an accomplished business professional with 15 years of experience helping small

to medium sized businesses streamline their normal operations to drive results. Founder and owner of Jordan Solutions Net, Nakia has created numerous training programs for call centers to facilitate daily operations and enhance customer service experiences. Her Bachelor’s degree in Management Science has also allowed her to assist businesses with their finances in addition to leading them to recovering millions in unpaid funds. She takes on an educative approach to ensure that each of her clients can create, implement, and maintain operational systems and strategies to surpass their customers’ expectations thereby accelerating business growth. Nakia is equally as passionate about teaching people how to start, implement and maintain a business. Additionally, she owns a travel agency and restaurant review business, IWentthereConcierge and feeds the homeless during her free time.

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Customer Service Matters written by Nakia Jordan Most people in business don’t understand that first

service-related topics. Ongoing training will equip your

impressions are crucial when meeting customers, and

customer service representatives with knowledge and

we can never underestimate the importance of customer

increase their confidence. When armed with the appropriate


training tools employees feel empowered to get the job done.

With most business transactions being automated, it’s imperative that the rare experiences that customers get with

Below is a short list of topics that are great for any staff

a human be superb. Ultimately, great customer support

member that interfaces with the general public.

truly drives brilliant customer experience, and it begins

1. Listening Skills

right from the very minute a customer steps foot into your

2. Don’t Be Afraid to Say I Don’t Know

organization down to every way you and your employees

3. Solving Problems on First Call

interact with your customers. It encompasses everything

4. Follow-up

from how much parking you have available to how you

5. Knowledge of Policies & Procedures

greet customers, handle service complaints, and back up your product or service.

Quality customer service is about making sure your customers and employees feel they are valued, treated fairly,

To accomplishment superb customer service, it is important to have a training program that offers refreshers on customer 25

and appreciated by your business.

Photographer: Jerry A Barnes Model: Ngozi Eme Akwari Stylist: JABarnes Photography LLC HMUA: Ngozi Eme Akwari

JABarnes Photography LLC

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Why I Stayed

Surviving written by Onicka Daniel Why did you stay? Domestic violence victims and survivors hear this so often. I can only imagine what abuse victims are feeling now in COVID-19. I can do better than imagine because I lived it. I stayed because I was vested in my relationship. No one gets in a relationship to end it. The same as when you accept an employment offer: you are committed to giving the company your best and you expect that you will be rewarded with desired compensation, job security, acknowledgment of contribution, and growth opportunities where you can continue to grow and excel. After you have given your best, you don’t expect to be abruptly fired, not paid for time worked, have your reputation shattered, or to be discredited for all your contributions made. But that is exactly what happened in my marriage. After giving my all, building a life with my ex-husband, producing two beautiful sons, enduring several chokings, verbal assaults, had a gun pointed at me, lies spread about me and even contracting a sexually transmitted disease, it all came to an end. One of my most vivid memories is when he choked and dragged me from one end of our condo to the other by my hair after an argument. I kept believing at different 27

and How It Almost Killed Me:

Domestic Violence points in our marriage that it would get better. Every relationship has its ups and downs. You just have to hang in there. I hung in there and it didn’t work. I was broken beyond compare: frightened, feeling as if I was worth nothing and scared for my life. I dreamed of a better life for my children even if I didn’t know how it would be possible. • How would I financially support three children (includes one from a prior relationship) by myself? • Where would we go? • What if he killed me? Did I want to leave our two children under his complete control? • What if I left only for him to find me? • If he found me, what would he do to those who were around me (my family)? Think about it: if I was the one he claimed to love and he hurt me, my ex definitely wouldn’t care about hurting my family or friends if I left him and went to them for help. We see stories all the time of murder-suicides and those are REALITY for abuse victims. Did you know that on average, “a victim attempts to leave SEVEN times before finally leaving for good? The most lethal time in an abusive relationship is after a victim leaves. More than 70% of domestic violence murders happen after the victim has gotten out.” So, with the odds stacked against me, why did I leave and why should you? Because you cannot LIVE and remain in an abusive situation. As much as your life is at risk leaving, it is twice as much at risk staying and the same is true for your children. If your abuser doesn’t kill you, you will either kill yourself to escape or live the rest of your existence waiting to die. That is no way to live but I’ve been there. Your heart will break as you see your children struggle

in multiple ways, as a result of growing up in an abusive home environment. I pray every day that my children have healed and that I did leave in enough time and did enough to repair their well-being. I still see signs of growing up in such an environment in their individual lives, but I know that I am demonstrating the importance of resilience and knowing that you can take control of your life at any time. I pray I have instilled in each one of them the power and beauty that they have by their sheer presence. I pray that my love has healed all wounds and, today, they see what a healthy, loving relationship looks like with my future husband and partner that adores us. My advice to those going through domestic violence and abuse: • You ARE NOT alone. • It IS NOT your fault. • You must create a safety plan. • There is HELP out there and organizations that can provide support including shelter and essential supplies. • If you have children with your abuser, PLEASE don’t stay. An unhealthy, abusive relationship IS NOT BETTER than no relationship at all. Your children deserve to live in a safe, loving, thriving, and productive environment. Onicka currently works and partners with Transitions Family Violence Services, the sole provider of comprehensive family violence services in Hampton, Newport News, and Poquoson, Virginia, and a coprovider of services for York County, Virginia, USA. For more information on help and resources that are available, please visit To connect with Onicka Daniel, please visit communiqué Magazine






written by Olympia Kent

While the world is still recovering from this pandemic we have adapted to a new way of living by wearing PPE on and off the job. It's essential to wear a face mask everywhere you go throughout your day. You may have noticed a breakout in the area of your face around the jawline, cheeks, or chin where your mask is worn and wondered what caused it? You would never think it's the mask right? This pandemic has brought on a different beast called Maskne! What is Maskne? Is that even a real word? Yes! it's a word in fact it's been added to the Urban Dictionary short for( Acne Mechanica or Mask Acne). What causes it to appear on your face? Masks trap oil, dirt and bacteria close to our skin. The result is acne, small bumps, inflamed hair follicles, irritation, around the mouth, cheeks and Jawline typically where your mask is worn. Because we're still adjusting to this whole mask/ PPE situation people still have bad habits while wearing masks, they still tend to touch their faces to adjust the mask when talking or eating. This adds friction that causes irritation according to MD Anna Chien, in the John Hopkins Department of dermatology. Keeping your mask clean would definitely be the first step to getting rid of this acne problem. If you're using a reusable mask please wash it daily with non-irritation soap and warm water. After each use and dry it in the dryer,

store your fresh mask in a bag to keep it clean. If you’re concerned about breakouts, Dr Chien recommends gentle, mild soaps and water for your face, nothing scented or antibacterial. Try a good, bland moisturizer at night. For anyone who starts to get irritation on their facial skin, use a barrier cream or spray, such as Petroleum jelly or zinc oxide, Dr Chien also states “I like diaper cream, because you’re pretty much addressing the same issue as diaper irritation: irritated, raw, sore skin due to a warm, wet environment. If you know you’ll be spending time with a mask on, consider taking a break from unnecessary cosmetics. Since no one will see the lower half of your face, it’s a perfect time to skip makeup or anything that could clog your pores or aggravate acne or other skin lesions.” Wearing makeup under a mask causes clogged pores and breakouts, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, also the residue will soil your mask and then your back where you started with the brakes outs. Because of this pandemic, we may be wearing masks for a long time. The right skin care routine can help with mask-related acne or irritation and breakouts. If you have any breakouts that don't respond to skin care changes, you should see a dermatologist. “Creativity is your best makeup skill, don’t be afraid to experiment.”- Pat McGrath communiqué Magazine


Daphna Ziman Founder and President of

Cinémoi Network written by Corretta L. Doctor

I had the privilege and great honor to interview Daphna Ziman. Daphna Ziman is the Founder and President of Cinémoi, an acclaimed television network that focuses on classic films, premium content, documentaries, and special fashion and film. As one of the only women in the world to be at the helm of a media company, she is also a dedicated philanthropist, a New York Times Best Selling author, and activist. Daphna Ziman has a personality that pulls you in and settles your soul. She is a woman with the incredible ability to make major moves while maintaining her class and grace in business. She is an icon to emulate and a mentor to learn from. Television is a form of entertainment but the mission of Daphna’s network, Cinémoi, is to elevate as well as entertain. Daphna recognizes that her company is a window into many homes of the world. The premium programming currently gives the world viewers front row seats to an assortment of international titles and festivals, curated vintage to modern movies, as well as green and haute couture content, and an array of glamorous events, including the Cannes Film Festival Red Carpet and Closing Ceremony, and the channel's annual International Fashion Film Awards show. Daphna wants to reflect a theme that shows heroes in a positive light, and shows each viewer that there is a hero in each of us. Daphna kindly shares with us, “I want you to understand that things that hurt you, also hurt me.” She is one business mogul that does not mind showing her heart, she is personable and is such a welcoming spirit here on earth. 31

My conversation with Daphna revealed just how much of a warrior with wings she is! Daphna is a phenomenal woman with an extraordinary caring soul. She walks the talk in a mighty bold way, and she has a huge passion for many things, including fashion and film, but the heart and soul of Daphna Ziman is children. As the founder of Children Uniting Nations, a 501 (c)3 charity which provides foster children with devoted, non-paid mentors, Daphna was successful in lobbying to get the Family Preservation Act amended. The act ensures safety of children returning home after foster care. Children at risk, specifically girls need direct support. Daphna created a universal strategy to protect youth and women at risk. She focuses on helping women that get systematically caught up in acts of crime where they need, but cannot afford a proper lawyer, and subsequently end up in the system. Daphna is an avid writer. When the world becomes dark, she turns to her love of penning her pain onto paper, and writing out her thoughts. She lives vicariously through characters that she creates. She deepens her imagination and writes about how and why her characters can become a part of the solution of any issue. Daphna is the author of 2011 New York Times Best Selling book, ‘The Gray Zone’ and the book is just as relevant and engaging today as it was when it was written. Many written reviews indicate the book is excellent, and it is no doubt that Daphna’s success with the book was eminent. Daphna writes from a position of passion and intrigue. A synopsis found on Good Reads says, “Kelly Jensen is thrown into foster care after witnessing her mother's murder and her father's wrongful conviction.


Daphna Ziman communiquĂŠ Magazine


By 15 she is a runaway, and has become a master of identity theft. Years later, estranged from a vicious husband and struggling to support her children, Kelly becomes a suspect in the murder of her lover, a congressman”. The book is over 300 pages of an excellent piece of literary work by Daphna. We asked Daphna what’s on the horizon for a new release and she told us, “I will be writing about the Al Capone period in Chicago. Right now, the south side of Chicago is experiencing more violence than ever. I am interested to

show how a U.S. gangster, even in his notorious domain role in organized crime, still had the heart to build soup kitchens to feed the community.” If Al could show compassion, anyone can. A day in the life of this amazing woman is wondrous and filled with peace. As Daphna speaks about her day, it is clear that the saying, “how things start, is how they end” is true. Daphna shares that she arises daily around 6am and starts

her day with a probiotic, vitamin C (orange juice) and she always, always, always includes a workout in her morning routine. Daphna loves the outdoors. She loves being able to just go outside and breathe again, to see others, and impart a friendly smile. “The COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing has taught us that we are no different.” Daphna assures you that in her presence, we are all standing on fair ground. The world sees us all for exactly who we are.

Daphna shares a funny story about her celebrity friend, “Chocolate” and herself, that she self-titles “Vanilla” as a friendly exchange and term of endearment between two very good friends. This story shows you the power and exchange of energy and goodwill. Follow closely. Daphna hosts an event called “The Day of the Child” where she matches 1000 foster children with 1000 university students/mentors. It is a successful event and she meets the children at a hands on day filled with fun and activities. One day, Vanilla (Daphna) and her friend Chocolate met up to celebrate the opening/dedication of a specially designed school classroom that Chocolate created in a South Central Los Angeles school. The room is designed to safely accommodate autistic children and was created by Chocolate in honor of her autistic nephew. Vanilla drove herself, showing up in her fancy sports convertible, while Chocolate arrived in a limousine with security and bodyguards. Afterall, it is in South Central LA! At the end of the event, where Chocolate was singing and kids were climbing around and everyone had fun, the two ladies departed the school. Chocolate left with her entourage and Vanilla departed on her lonesome, just dependent on her faith to get her home safely. As Vanilla pulled away from the school, she was stopped at a traffic light near a convenience store on the corner. She saw a gang, wearing their colors and as she rolled slowly toward the traffic light, hoping it would just be a scare and not a situation, one of the boys motioned for her to roll her car windows down. Alone, this was not what Vanilla wanted to be a part of. Not that day and not ever. With caution, she proceeded to listen as she kept her eye on the gang while responding to the boy by putting her window partly down. As she nervously did what she was told, she remained faithful that her goodwill and positive energy towards all children would keep her safe. As Vanilla thought of her work and the importance of why she positions herself into the deep dive of caring for foster children, she looked into the eyes of the boy that was beckoning for her to stop the car and put her window down. A piercing look into his eyes revealed a story. A story that only Vanilla, the relentless and persevering Daphna, could tell. This boy was one of the young boys that she had worked with in her program of 1000 foster children! He recognized her and not only did he let her go without harm, he and his

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friends got together and escorted her to the freeway so that she could get out of that part of town safely. This is a true story of how Vanilla, Daphna Ziman was saved. And by the way, her friend Chocolate, is the incomparable Chaka Khan. They are very good friends and those are the names they give each other! To this day, they share this story. It has a deep meaning. To celebrate another person is a gift to the person, and to ourselves. The world is clapping loudly for all of the Daphna Ziman’s of the world. Make no mistake that Daphna is a pioneer and an evolving figure in our world. She holds nothing back in the way of leadership and empowerment and she stands firm in the belief that we all hold a special place to serve others, in whatever capacity we can. Her “each one- teach one” mentality is contagious. Her philanthropic spirit opens doors and presents opportunities for people, and especially children, that may never see the hope of a promising future. A healing of the universe is in order. Daphna encourages

meditation and here is some advice she gave to me, “Meditate two times a day. Find and focus on the white light that goes all the way to the apex of the universe. Breathe in and let it go into every cell of the body and then push it out. Exhale fear and abandonment through the third eye. Become one with the light and ultimately you will heal against the fear and abandonment”. I have been practicing meditation since the moment I ended my one on one chat with Daphna. I have a beautiful new understanding of relaxation now. In recognition, Daphna Ziman has received the Jacqueline Kennedy Award by JFK University, Women of Achievement Award by North American Council for Adoptable Children, Uniting Children of the World Award by the Child Welfare League of America, and the Peace & Tolerance Lifetime Achievement Award for Child Advocacy, among others. Daphna leaves this interview on a light note, sharing some of her favorite things with us! Every woman loves shoes and Daphna shares that her fave ‘foot wheels’ are Louboutin’s. Daphna loves the entire idea of elegant shoes and Louboutin is her shoe of choice! One of her favorite unisex designers is Riot Hill: A constant progression of high-end fabrications used to communicate utilitarian and industrial-inspired design. Founded in Los Angeles and constructed in Japan, RIOT HILL™ explores menswear with the intent to cultivate subversive culture. Some of Daphna’s all time favorite artists are AKON, Wyclef Jean, and Etta James. To take it a step further, one of her favorite songs by Etta James is ‘A Lover is Forever’. Daphna’s favorite vacation destination is Lake Como in Italy. Daphna Ziman is beautiful and filled with an undying passion to live a life designed to be of service and empowerment to others. She has two daughters, Michelle and Ashley. The moment Daphna became a Mother, through adoption, that is the moment that she started walking into her destiny, and she has never stopped. Visit and continue to live your life in peace. Create it, claim it and never stop believing in it.



The Social Experience is an opportunity to create a private [virtual] group of people that will come together to learn how S. Monique’s journey of being abducted at age one evolved into a life long mission of advocacy for missing persons. The book, film, and discussions change hearts, minds, and society as a whole. Pull together a group of friends or colleagues and join her for The Social Experience where you will watch and discuss the film, “The Longest Living Jane Doe”, discuss the book, “I Am The Ancestor”, and learn how you can be the voice for missing persons. This story of hope has been very influential in raising awareness and bringing about positive change in the areas of Child Abductions, Human Trafficking, and Human rights. Each person in your group will: - Receive a copy of the book, “I Am The Ancestor” - Attend the Virtual Screening of “The Longest Living Jane Doe” - Meet and Greet with Author and Film Director, S. Monique Smith-Person - Group Q&A Session with S. Monique Smith-Person

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Power Influence


When you think of influence so many things come to mind. Most of us think of those in control or in high places. Seeing it from a spiritual perspective you see it different. Then to see power and influence you add more to it. We all have some kind of influence good or bad. I choose to use my influence in a positive way. I go into the community and I share with others and encourage them. In today we must be able to help and inspire others with positive influence. In life influence can be life changing and every word can effect change positive or negative. Will you make a positive change? But we must learn and continue in the things you learn but remember who you learned them from. I have been able through the teaching of my book The Power Of The Seed sharing about how powerful seed is when sown properly and the process of sowing seed. From the natural and spiritual aspect of sowing seed. As men let’s take our rightful place in our families, our homes, our communities and our churches. We have great influence and we can make a difference. Men of valor you are important and you are valuable. You are protectors your presence makes a difference. Truly I have tried with every opportunity I am afforded to share positive influence and make a difference. So in life we look at things from another perspective and perception and always see the best and make great and positive influence.

Dr. Eric L. Holmes Author of The Power of The Seed 37

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Lasheika Boyd is an emerging Author with her first release slated to be on shelves and across virtual bookstore platforms everywhere, both in the United States and abroad, early Spring 2021. Her book, ‘The Top Twenty Reasons Why Men Cheat’, is about a variety of men and why they cheat, or have cheated in the past. Lasheika conducted a survey on several men from many diverse walks of life. We asked Lasheika why this book meant so much to her. She explained that she has experienced a great deal of emotional loss in her past. She wants to help others avoid the ongoing dwelling and emotional setbacks that a failed love affair can bring about. “Life after a ‘relationship loss’ looks like the need for more self-care, self-love, and taking time to reevaluate needs I thought I had to have. I needed to be strong for my children and myself after the break-up. The divorce felt like a death. After putting all that I had into the marriage, and then it didn’t work, it definitely felt like a death.” Lasheika acknowledged every emotion she felt during the emotional upset she experienced. That is a part of the healing process. She goes on to tell us, “I do not feel like every relationship that is ending is a loss because something better is out there. You just have to find yourself again… I needed to be alone for a while and get back to “Sheika”. At the beginning it felt like a loss, but it turned out


to be a beautiful lesson and blessing in disguise”. When we experience loss, especially a relationship or friendship loss, we want to understand how that painful loss came about so that we can work on the areas of our lives that may have contributed to the loss. Asking questions, researching, looking at our inner self and reading about feelings and relationships are some of the ways that we can investigate. Lasheika took her painful journey to a different level and decided to seek information from the opposite sex. She wanted to talk to the men, to get their thought process onto paper and into an organized data field of information. “To be honest I was not as organized as I am now so I didn’t have a set number of participants that I would ask. If I was out having dinner, out of town, at a friend’s gathering, at my boyfriend’s house (which is my husband now), my dad’s barbershop, a random man that may have just been standing around by himself or with his ‘boys’, I was asking that question: Why have you cheated in the past or why do you cheat now? It was an upfront approach from me. That’s just how I do things. No rules”. Lasheika was able to get organic responses that were not rehearsed or preconstructed in any way. She succeeded in getting a diverse group of participants. They all had different financial statuses, different careers, and had different upbringings. Lasheika assures the future readers of her new book that the greatest outcome they can take away from the story is that women will be more aware of what type of man they are dealing with, and it will also answer some of the questions that women have always wanted to know about why men cheat. For the men that read the book they can really take a close look at themselves to see what they need to hold themselves accountable for. The top three lessons that women and men can learn from Lasheika on how she went from being in a very bad relationship to now having a great marital relationship are: “Number 1. Never lose yourself. If they truly love you they will want you to be as successful as you possibly can, and they will help you get there, and see you win. Number 2: Make sure that you and your spouse are on the same page at the same time. No one wants to feel like they are moving on alone or being in a relationship alone. Number 3: Don’t force anything or try to convince someone that you are the one for them. If they are truly for you, then you won’t have to do that, and things will flow automatically”.

We asked Lasheika to share some advice for people that are struggling from the fallout of a failed relationship and here is what she offers, “ The strongest message of hope that I can give to women and men in failed relationships is that there is someone out there for you and only you that speaks your love language. You have to give yourself time to heal first. Once you have healed and you’re ready to love and be loved again you could have the best time of your life. Don’t give up on love, but do not settle. I don’t think there is a specific system to a successful marriage. My grandparents were married for 50yrs before my grandma passed away and my parents have been married for 35yrs (together for 42yrs) so I had never seen a failed marriage until my own. I just believe that marriage is what you and your spouse make it. That may sound cliché but it’s the truth”. A day in Lasheika’s life, from the perspective of being successful in finding love again, is easy. She says, “Of course, no one’s life is perfect, but I say it’s easy because things that I used to worry about I no longer have to. My husband lifts that extra weight off of me. Women or men shouldn’t have to worry about if their spouse loves them or if they are cheating, or out here making them look crazy, or staying out all night. Real love is consistency, patience, being faithful and kind to each other”. As we come upon the holidays, Lasheika tells us that her home is filled with the look of love. Her children are very happy for the Christmas season and it is her favorite time of the year to see the smiles on their faces on Christmas morning as they gather around the beautifully decorated Christmas tree. “I like to cook Christmas dinner at home, and we MUST have a macaroni pie! We like to relax and let the kids enjoy their new gifts. My daughter is 19, son is 12 and we have a three year old -that is where the excitement is now”! And as this Maya Angelou fan wraps up her chat with us, she drops this into the atmosphere: “Yes there will be a part two to the book, but the women will be in the hot seat this time around”. Lasheika Boyd wants to engage with you! Email her at Follow her on IG @ Sheikawithnofilter, and on Facebook at Lasheika Craig Boyd.

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In the Beginning There Was


- and forever will be.

written by SIGRUN BRAGA Guðrúnardóttir I want to ask you to play a little mind game. I want you to picture a person in your mind, a person who uses their craft as a form of activism in making the world a better place, also known as “a craftivist”. You see, there are no right or wrong answers here, it is only our imagination at work here. What is it that you see? Do you see an old woman making hats for her grandchildren? Or maybe a middle-aged man knitting socks for a charity? The thing is, anyone can be a craftivist. As long as you want to have a positive impact on the world, through your art and/ or craft you can be a craftivist. No special skills are required, or as The Craftivism Manifesto says: “A craftivist is anyone who uses their craft to help the greater good. Your craft is your voice. Craftivism is about raising consciousness…and celebrating traditional skills in new ways. As well as remembering and respecting the makers that came before us, adding to the dialouge and leaving something for the next generation of craftivists.” Craftivism as an act of a celebration of traditional skills has been around since the beginning of history and time. However, the term “craftivism” as we know it today was coined by an American woman, Betsy Greer, in the early 2000 when she wanted to use the traditional skill of knitting in a new way. Our drive as human beings is to create and leave a mark on our community. By creating we take up a certain space and that way we make sure our history, and existence, is not forgotten. Clear example of that is the parietal art, popularly called cave art. Cave art is the voice of a time gone by, a voice

telling us stories up till this day. By crafting images into the rock surface or painting on the cave walls, people of the olden days have raised our conscience about their daily lives and struggles. We remember them and respect their skills. They have given us the notion that even though it is only through the words “Naomi was here” written on a random bathroom stall, creating is about finding our voices. Voices that might easily be drowned in the crowded modern and fast world. And since creativity is basically about two actions, thinking and producing, we can help the greater good. Knitting hats for children can also help the planet by reducing textile waste and knitting socks for charity is celebrating traditional skills in a new way. And both raise consciousness about the fact that we all have a purpose and can care about our fellow human beings. In one way or the other, I hope we can be the change we want to see in the world. One loop, or a brushstroke, at a time. Because one single loop is just a loop, but many loops can form a warm sock for cold feet. And that thought and action can make the world a better place. Betsy Greer and I have been friends since she visited Iceland a couple of years ago. Betsy Greer is a writer, a maker, and a researcher, and the author of Knitting for Good!: A Guide to Creating Personal, Social, and Political Change Stitch by Stitch. She runs the blog and believes that creativity and positive activism can save not only the soul, but also the world. Betsy Greer's book on Craftivism was released in 2014. Even though she is said to have "coined term craftivism" she regards that she in fact "popularized it".

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Model Guthrie Bonnett (#ATOC) Wardrobe Gstar Raw Eyewear Khandie Woo Frames Photographer Marlon Cordz Location St James Farm Forest Preserve

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Angie Stone written by JC Gardner with Corretta L. Doctor

|Black brotha, I love ya and I will never try to hurt ya | I want ya to know that I'm here for you, forever true| 'Cause you're my black brotha, Strong brotha |and there is no one above ya,| I want ya to know that I'm here for you, forever true| Those bars, ever so relevant and needed today, were dropped in 2001 and lit up the airwaves, rising to #3 on the R&B Billboard Chart in 2002, where it spent a total of 35 weeks. Brotha had those jazzy, smoky undertones, overlaid with that smooth, unmistakable classy touch of gospel by none other than neo soul artist, Angie Stone. Angie Stone, born December 18, 1961 as Angela Laverne Brown, is an only child, and was raised in Columbia, South Carolina, where she was a cheerleader and started out singing in church choirs. At the age of 14, she was part of an adult gospel group. Her mother was a nurse. Her father was a cab driver and part of a quartet and spent many hours practicing and perfecting harmonies in their home. During those early days, those music lessons allowed Angie to have a front row seat into the world of music. Angie is a beautiful woman of grace, strength, and empowering courage for women around the world. communiquĂŠ Magazine


The lyrics to her songs have become personal anthems for so many females. The enduring strength of this almighty Woman of God is felt through her words, and in times of grief, heartbreak, crisis, or good times alike, Angie has a verse or two to pull you through. Looking closely at her career you will see a versatile artist that has been on television, film, and music charts! Angie’s debut television role was in 2000 on the series Moesha, a sitcom that stars singer Brandy Norwood. Angie’s film debut was The Hot Chick starring Rob Schneider, where she played Madame Mambuza, a memorable role centered around the magic of an enchanted pair of ancient earrings- that role set the scene for the entire film. Continuing to appear in film, television, and theatre, Angie never ceased to amaze fans and followers with her ability to excel in the entertainment industry on multiple platforms. A self-taught pianist and an alto-saxophone player, Angie excelled in extra-curricular activities such as cheerleading and basketball. Songwriting was also an innate gift, that helped with creating cheers. She felt she had to work “ten times harder” to rise above the hate and prejudice that was prevalent at that time, especially for a dark-skinned sister. So, not only did she master “cheering”, she wrote original cheers, too. Fitting in for her was extra hard. “Growing up Angie” would make a great title for her autobiography because Angie has lessons of love-love, self-love, achievement, perseverance, and sustainment that she can teach through her life’s testimony! She notes that she had a “built-in attitude,” ready to battle anyone that challenged her. They used to call her Tiger Brown, because if they were coming for her, she would rise to the challenge. But during her teen years, she did a lot of soul-searching for God and spirituality. On her journey, she


visited different churches and congregations. It really shaped her character and helped her to understand all religions and not be judgmental. It totally changed her life. Today, Angie has a Doctorate in Theology and hosts a talk show called Power Hour on Instagram, a faith based show that speaks to listeners about topics such as faith and wisdom. She often has special cohosts joining her on the show. While in high school, she and two of her best friends, Cheryl "The Pearl" Cook and Gwendolyn "Blondy" Chisolm, formed the rap group, The Sequence, which is the first rap female group that paved the way for all other female rap groups to come. Angie was known then as Angie B. Their success seems to have been one of those forgotten moments in history, overshadowed by other mainstream East Coast acts but make no mistake: The Sequence was discovered while in high school by Sylvia Robinson, who died in 2011, and was signed to her label, Sugar Hill Records in 1979. The Sequence wrote the song, “Funk You Up,” and it sold 500,000 copies in three weeks! Their success allowed them to tour internationally with the Sugarhill Gang,

Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, and The Treacherous Three, just to name a few. The song, Funk You Up, has been recut and sampled by many, including Erykah Badu, Dr. Dre, and Bruno Mars. The Sequence definitely had their names etched in the history books: Funk You Up was only the third rap song to chart in the top 50 of Billboard‘s Hot Soul Singles. They have since been recognized by Rolling Stone magazine as the first female hip-hop group to release an original record, and they were the first Southern all-girl rap group. They remained with Sugar Hill Records for half a decade. The music business can be brutal, and The Sequence didn’t reap monetary fortune from their massive sales and other contributions to the label as the record company owned the rights for thirty years! The rights were reverted back to them in 2016. After Angie left Sugar Hill Records due to creative and personal differences to focus more on being a singersongwriter. The Sequence, however, did not disband. Today, they are still in close contact with each other – sisters for life. For Angie, being a solo artist was easier said than done. For twelve years, she was absent from the music scene and it was a rocky road. During that time, remarkably, she worked temp jobs, even worked at the popular radio station, KISS-FM in New York and just like many Americans that are trying to stay above water in difficult times, Angie was once on social services support for a short time. No matter what she did, she was pressing forward towards her dreams. While working at KISS-FM she met the members of her Nineties new jack swing group, Vertical Hold that included Angie, David Bright, and Willie Bruno. Also, during that time, Angie wrote a song for Prince protégée Jill Jones (who sang back-up vocals for Teena Marie) and eventually befriended the artist Prince himself. While those years took her away from the spotlight, the music never stopped. “I was just one of those girls who was determined. I knew I was greater than this. I used to save my money and go into the studio to rehearse. One day I was in the studio, and Jill

Jones was in there too. She was one of Prince’s artists. They saw and heard me and before I knew it, Prince hired me to tour with Jill Jones.” And just like that, after 12 years of paying dues and being on the sidelines, Angie B. was back as Angie Stone. Prince had visions of her being an independent artist and even flew her out to his home for a week of artistry. (Check out their vocal collaboration on “You Make My Sun Shine”.) Once Angie was back on her feet in the music game, she’s been singing and writing ever since. And those lyrics! She is a strong believer that the lyrics of a song need to be something the listener can relate to. She tries to sing about subject matters that people are afraid to talk about like “Brotha” with those strong tell-it-like-it is lyrics. She has to be moved and likes to deal with subjects in their real rawness. “I try to communiqué Magazine


channel energy; I try to keep it as direct and real as possible. When I did poetry, it was more makebelieve and fantasy, but when I do songwriting, that’s the real-deal-Holyfield!” We ladies and fans know all about her messages of love, rejection, and pain and it has not gone unnoticed as she cites one of her major accomplishments was receiving her first of two Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards. She notes, “I was honored but I accepted it on behalf of all women.” Her message today for aspiring artists is to understand the business process first. “It is so important to really understand what you’re signing and what you are getting yourself into. It’s exciting to get your sound on the air and hear it on all of these streaming services, but make sure you are getting paid.” Angie has two children. Her daughter, Diamond, was born in 1984 and is from her marriage to Rodney Stone. Diamond contributed background vocals to her mother’s song "Baby" in 2007. Diamond gave birth to Angie’s grandson in 2008 and another grandchild in July of 2012. Angie dated Neo Soul singer D'Angelo for four years in the 90’s. Their son, Michael D'Angelo Archer II was born in 1998. Next on the horizon for Angie Stone is a bio-pic of her life story and she is also looking to do more film and television and of course…music. With COVID-19, this three-time Grammy nominated artist is currently scheduling some live stream events and virtual tours. We know whatever drops next from this talented singer-songwriter will be something that we can feel deep in our soul. Follow Angie Stone on Instagram @TheAngieStone and visit her website to join her email list at 51



Boles, Jr.

Minister Roosevelt Boles, Jr. is a Gospel singing sensation with a voice that is as big as his personality. He was born in Mount Vernon, New York . His family, later relocated to Hampton, South Carolina where he lived for over 20 years. At a very young age, Minister Boles demonstrated an insatiable appetite for ministry. In 1994, he was ordained a minister under the Mount Calvary Holy Churches of America. We are honored to highlight Mr. Boles in this interview and hope that you enjoy it too! Be sure to follow him on all of his social media platforms and we ask that you support his music! Stop by his Social Media pages and let him know we sent you! communiquĂŠ Magazine What is your earliest memory of singing for an audience, tell us about it? RB: My earliest memory of singing for an audience was at the age of 8. I was given a solo at my grandparents small church in Early Branch, South Carolina. It was my very first public performance and I still recall it as if it were yesterday, leading the song, "Soon and Very Soon". The church was still as normal and very calm, my grandmother kept asking me was I ready, I sat still as my hands were sweating and my heart was beating. My grandfather leaned towards me and said, you are not singing for us, you are singing for GOD so give GOD your best, as if it was going to be your last time to please him. The moment came as quick as he got the last word out. I walked up and I was too short to be seen over the pulpit, I was standing on the side of it and recall saying, GOD you need to show up. I proceeded to sing and the entire church (when I opened my eyes) was up and clapping and it seem like, as the old

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people would say, THEY CAUGHT THE HOLY GHOST. LOL. After that I was the Sunday morning singer to lead songs at the church. communiqué Magazine When did you release your first project, tell us about it? RB: My first project titled ‘Hallelujah, Thank You Jesus’ was released in 2006. It was my first time realizing that I was not only a singer, but a song writer as well. The project was birthed out of my life story, and not taking the time to heal from my mother’s death. May 10, 1999 (two days after my birthday) GOD called my mother, Fornia A. Boles, from labor to reward. I had never been so numb and just never took the time to mourn. As ‘church folk’ we are taught that we should not mourn, in spite of the bible speaking that they that mourn shall be comforted. I was strong for everyone and I was forgetting myself and then one day I totally lost it. So, on this album I wrote a song to pay homage to my incredible mother. The song "Mama I Miss You" took off with all who heard it and gave my career consistent bookings at churches all across the world for Mother's day. This was just the beginning of something I never even dreamed of as a child. communiqué Magazine Do you believe that music is therapy? RB: I certainly do believe that music is therapy, as it [music] is a universal language that can convey and change ones mood and the atmosphere. Even different cultures are made common at the sound of music. That is amazing especially because we have different languages, dialects, and beliefs. For me, I can't fathom not having music as a part of my existence. communiqué Magazine What does music mean to you? RB: Music to me is the runway for entering into our heaven of heavens, holy of holy. It is something that changes our moods, feelings, and a lot of time , our thoughts. Music, to me, also produces beauty of form and expressions of emotions. I always say, I could not be without it, or it without me. communiqué Magazine What is the latest project you have released? RB: My latest project "These Are The Things You Are" was released in 2015. The project was blessed to peak in the top of the chart at #33 and caught the attention of Iconic Kirk Franklin who shared this song on his radio show for


months. This gave my ministry another level of unexpected miracles and notoriety. communiqué Magazine Who are some of your music mentors? RB: Wow!!! That is certainly a loaded question. I find all talents as mentors as they all have something that is needed and unique. I would start to say, my mother Fornia Boles, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Lisa Page Brooks, Daryl Coley, James Moore, John P. Kee, Kirk Franklin, Fred Hammond, and Marvin Winans. communiqué Magazine What has been your biggest moment in your music career? RB: Wow. My biggest moment has really been my entire career as I had no idea that I would be given such the opportunities that I have. I am so grateful to GOD for all of them as I did not, nor do I feel, I am worthy of this platform. But I accept it because GOD has ordained it and I hold it with such dignity and integrity that I will never compromise. I am reminded, as my mother taught me, never sing a song that you do not live up to. She would say, people can sing a lie as well as they tell one. So, I hold myself to that level of accountability. But out of so many of them, I would say it would be charting the BDS music chat in the top 33. Roosevelt tell us that his next big thing is to release a new project in 2021 and introduce a group (T1 Sound) that have been a part of his life for 28 years. He says, “I am certainly pushing forward with the entertainment group and other business ventures that GOD is releasing me to”. Roosevelt tells us that he is going to continue to obey the voice of GOD and possibly start his own entertainment group. He wants to help independent artists navigate with excellence and integrity. Visit Roosevelt’s website at Readers can locate Roosevelt Boles at the following social media outlets: Facebook Roosevelt Boles Roosevelt Boles Fan Page II Twitter @PrinceofWorship Instagram @Roosevelt Boles

The Real

Butterfly Effect written by Corretta L. Doctor The butterfly floats so quietly, lands so softly, and makes such a huge impact on those that witness the colors, shapes and fluttering sensation of its wings. That uniqueness is reminiscent of Stacey Henry Carr and her presence in this world. She is amazing and here is why: she chooses to be amazing and therefore she is! In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. Change your thinking, change your living. Believe it will be good and it will be great! Meeting Stacey shifted my thought process of what I could and could not do. Stacey is a tremendous asset to anyone that needs to understand how to enforce their ability to grow in business, life, and personal success. Let’s chat with Stacey. cM: If you met a stranger and they wanted to know the top three reasons why you serve others, tell us in three short phrases, what would those reasons be? Stacey: 1. I serve others by showing that that they are not alone in their situation. 2. I am passionate about being to someone else what I needed at one point in my life. 3. Serving others fulfills my passion and purpose and is what wakes me up with excitement every day. cM: What services and products, if any, does your communiquÊ Magazine


business offer? Stacey: Stacey Henry-Carr LLC provides life coaching, hypnotherapy and workshops. My life coaching is for women between the ages of 35 to 55 who are feeling stuck and seeking clarity and a roadmap in life. My hypnotherapy work is for anyone seeking to remove blocks that were caused by childhood trauma and negative beliefs that no longer serves them. My workshops are for people looking to gain knowledge on a particular subject but not yet ready to invest in long-term coaching. Life Coaching packages: • 30 day Mind Strengthening • 90 day Discovering you • 6 month Transformation cM: What is the business model you follow? Stacey: My business model starts with my clients in the middle because everything around my client is done to help produce success for them. The building blocks and foundation of my business includes open and honest communication, Aligned values, integrity, and heart. I do what I say I am going to do and believe in timely follow through. cM: What is the passion behind what you do? Stacey: My passion comes from working through my own moments of defeat and being able to build greatness at the end. Because I have experienced some of my own live challenges, I relate with my clients concerns. We are all a work in progress. I have had some moments that when I look back not only am I grateful to have overcome them but I see lessons in those moments that I can share with others. I get so passionate and excited when my clients have breakthroughs, lightbulb moments, or come to a resolution. My biggest passion however is the legacy that I want to leave for my children. I want to be remembered for the people whose lives I have help to change. That thought gives me great joy. 55

cM: What can a client expect to gain from working with you? Stacey: At the end of a coaching session my clients will start to get a better understanding about who they are, what drives them, and feeling inspired and motivated to continue to work on themselves. My intentions with every client meeting is to help them to pull out their inner genius and create a roadmap, a vision, and a mission to succeed. When my clients work with me they are to expect that I am in it for them to win. They will leave motivated, inspired, and with a call to action to replace negative thinking with positive action. They will feel like there is nothing they cannot accomplish. cM: What is the criteria for a client to work with you? Stacey: A client should be willing to do some selfwork. My ideal client just need to have a willingness to deep dive and to do the work required to pull out the best version of themselves. They must be willing to ask the hard questions and then follow up with another question of “but why”? They must be willing to dig deep and find the root. cM: What does success look like to you? Stacey: My success is wrapped around my family. If what I do every day aligns with my top five values which are family, peace, calm, independence, and serving others with integrity and honesty, then I feel successful. I love when my clients have the breakthrough I love when they figure out that they already knew the answers all along but just needed someone to help them pull it out. cM: When it comes to your business, what is your greatest success story? Stacey: My greatest success story is not giving up because I thought I was not ready and then recognizing that I was just afraid of the success that was ahead of me. Not only did I recognize that I was afraid, I immediately took action by identifying what caused the fear. I. This

moment I learned that taking action helped eliminate my fears. It was through this fear that I became a Certified Life Coach and a Certified Hypnotherapist. Often we are afraid of the unknown, or we feel that we are not good enough but those thoughts and feelings are derived from limiting and negative thoughts that we can overcome. Lesson learned was take action, get started! cM: What is your next big thing? Stacey: In October, I am starting a series of online workshops In 2019 I self-published my book Live Your Truth and Break the Cycle, and I am working on my second book along with some online courses. I want to reach as many people as possible to help them to overcome their fear of success and to replace those negative beliefs so that they can become the best version and use their God-given talent to awaken their purpose. cM: What can readers know about the heart and soul of Stacey Henry Carr? Stacey: Stacey Henry-Carr is a spiritual being. She loves being a light for other people. Her days are best spent when she helps at least one person to move through a challenge. She believes in love and sees the best in people, she see a half full glass in every situation. She believes in the laws of the universe and that love and kindness is paramount. She wants to see other people succeed and will go to lengths to help others. She believes in energy and knows that whatever energy she puts out comes back to her life and therefore practices giving love and kindness. Meditation and prayer is that the center of everything she does. She believes that a still mind hears the answers to life’s dilemmas. She loves to write and uses reflective writing as a healing modality. She realizes that her truest self comes out from pen to paper. Fun fact is that she dances while cooking, and loves the beach. Laughter is the important to her.

cM: What is your message for today’s women in business? Stacey: Regardless of the type of business that a woman is in it is very important that they remain true to their values. The moment they compromise what they believe in and move too far away from their core values they will find that business will become more challenging. Women in business should still tap into their intuitive guidance as it is there to guide them through all aspects of their lives. They should try not to allow the limiting and negative thoughts that were created so many years in their past to hinder their success. Everything that they do starts with their thinking. If they cure the mind they will cure the rest of their lives including being successful in business. They must believe that they are enough, and they should help others along the way. cM: What can you offer as advice to the readers, how can each person live life to their fullest? Stacey: Everything for me comes back to the mind being the most powerful tool in the toolbox. I would encourage our readers to take the time to become more aware of themselves, pay less attention to external distractions, and create a plan of action for themselves. Be a student of life and be willing to learn from everything and everyone. Every situation is a lesson. I would strongly encourage them to celebrate their losses with the level of enthusiasm that they celebrate their wins. I know that sounds a little off key but I say that because when things flow out, better things flow in. Live in complete gratitude for the little things in life, practice mindful living, be present in each moment. Don’t let life slip by. Readers can connect with Stacey Henry Carr on all Social Media platforms @staceyhenrycarr EMail Blog

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DR. ANITA Dav i s - De F o e a Global Solutionist ...and a Warm, Kind Soul! written by Corretta L. Doctor Dr. Anita Davis DeFoe is an Author, a Global Educator, a Business Professional, a Social Entrepreneur, and a strong advocate for mentorship in women and children. She offers her Life, Leadership and Business strategy services to everyone, both domestically and internationally. She is well known and popular in the business realm, speaking on many global platforms that offer her the opportunity to reach millions of women and men in business, to serve and add value to others. She is a force to be reckoned with and she is very personable, caring, and a great friend to those that are fortunate enough to be in her life. She is currently mentoring girls and women in several countries and working on a variety of projects throughout the Caribbean. Earlier this year, she traveled to Egypt to speak at the 2020 Women’s Economic Forum about social enterprise and purposeful living. She is always on the move with her business and we had the pleasure to catch up with her recently and we delved into a great insightful conversation that will allow you [the reader] to meet the soul of Dr. Anita Davis DeFoe. Dr Anita shares some of her personal insight, giving us an up close look at her life. She is one of the world’s favorite Leadership Icons. cM: What is your heart and soul purpose for doing the


work you do? Dr. Anita: I believe that when we are given the gift of life, each of us has a divine assignment, a reason for living that is aligned with one’s skills and talents; their interests and passions; those issues and causes that make your spirit cry out, urging and inspiring you to take action. The range of projects and programs I create or lend support to globally are tied to what I view as quality of life needs and access to opportunity that so many people lack. Both of my parents were educators, community servants, and my father was the first African American City Councilman in the city where I grew up, so I watched them serve with purpose and compassion. So, in addition to offering solutions to these issues being important to me personally, my work daily aims to honor the lives and legacy of my parents, and of the ancestors. After standing in the slave dungeon in Cape Coast Ghana, and seeing what the ancestors endured, I am compelled to use any knowledge I have gained over the years, any skills I have been blessed with, and all of my innovative solutionist mindset to impact the lives and elevate the outcomes of people and places. cM: As a young girl, growing up in North Carolina, who were your mentors? Dr. Anita: Growing up in North Carolina, back then, the village wrapped its loving arms around me, and people at church and at school encouraged me to soar. Most notable was my first-grade teacher, Sister Mary Williams and my music teacher, Sister Cecilia; both who were associated with the local Catholic College in my town. Two of my mother’s Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority sisters poured a wellspring of goodness into my life as well; Mrs. Hazel Russell, a woman of style and grace, and Mrs. Asbury Barber, a teacher who taught at the same school as my mother, became my godmother when I was born, and she is still a delight at 102 years old. While I name these individuals, there

are countless others who demonstrated through their shared words and deeds, how a woman of substance journeys through life. cM: When you think about your life, looking back over the good times and the not so good, what stands out the most as your greatest achievement of overcoming? Dr. Anita: Most definitely, I would say, answering the beckoning of spirit and the call to purpose. For several years, I found myself being called to leave my comfortable job as a Vice-President, and be more intentional with time and whatever talents I had been gifted with divinely. People would often tell me that I was crazy to even consider leaving my job and embarking on a path of uncertainty. In the end my fear of not pursuing my heartfelt work won out over just settling for work and a life that did not nourish my spirit or focus on things of importance to me. So many of us do what a friend calls the “dat-a-do” syndrome, choosing to put our dreams and aspirations in our back pockets and sitting on them; just learning how to grin and bear it. I feel that my greatest achievement was not listening to others and instead choosing to listen to self; pursuing purpose in the face of fear; becoming courageous enough to dance to my own music and being resilient when confronted with set-backs, delays, discouragement and deceit. When I reflect, I can only smile when I think about all of the opportunities to serve, and people I would not have met if I had chosen “dat-a-do.” I urge people every day to remember that destiny is calling, and one must choose if and when they will answer! cM: What does the word success mean to you? Dr. Anita: To me, success based upon each individual’s values and aspirations, is the achievement of that goal you set for yourself, no matter how simplistic or complex. Success for me, is indeed the attainment of a milestone that is important to me, and this is

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where being comfortable with yourself and not feeling compelled to be like everyone else truly becomes the greatest gift you can give to yourself, a true measure of success; the courage to be your unique self. Too often, in today’s world, success is defined in dollars. If that were the case, then those with lots of dollars should be totally happy and claiming success. We see so many instances these are some of the most unhappy people in the world and they grapple with feelings of being a failure constantly. cM: Who is your greatest She-Ro? Dr. Anita: My greatest She-Ro is Harriett Tubman! When you look at her impact, her resilience, her leadership, her tenacity, her personal courage and commitment and so many other admirable traits exhibited during the season that she lived, I find her to be someone I truly respect and aspire to emulate in my work and life. cM: What do you do for self-care? Dr. Anita: For self-care, I love to meditate to the soothing melodic magic of jazz and classical music, take walks and immerse myself in the beauty of nature, make pottery and paint. cM: Where is your favorite vacation destination? Dr. Anita: As one who loves to travel, and finds something memorable wherever I travel, indulge me to share my top five destinations: Paris, anywhere in Italy, anywhere in the Caribbean, Ghana, and Dubai. cM: We know you love fashion, who are some of your favorite designers? Dr. Anita: Kerby Jean-Raymond, Romeo Hunte, Carly Cushnie, Christopher John Rogers, Kyemah Mcentyre, Cushnie Et Ochs, and Demestik by Reuben Reuel are some of my favorites. I particularly love the unique designs found in quaint boutiques in countries that I visit. This fashion creativity is rarely found on any rack. 59

cM: What is your favorite book to read? Dr. Anita: Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success cM: What does life look like for you in the coming year? Dr Anita: 2021 is filled with promise; there are scheduled speaking engagements in places like Iceland, Egypt and Paris. My “JetSettit” travel fashion collection is slated for release, and I am working on a variety of reentry, leadership, social enterprise, job readiness and customer service workforce development projects in a variety of communities. The Circle of 99 book will be completed in the coming months and I look to be even more purposeful in the coming year. We really enjoyed getting to know more about Dr. Anita and surely we hope you will connect and network with this remarkable woman in business! Dr. Anita offers this advice, “For young women entering into the workplace, or relative to entrepreneurship under the terms of COVID-19 faced with this new social distancing challenge, explore opportunities to create innovative virtual services and sustainable business models; remain resilient on your quest to be successful as you define it. Just focus intently on possibility not solely on the problem and understand how to recognize and use your transferable skills to harness opportunities, and moreover learn to exude career resiliency”. Dr. Anita provides strategic execution and leadership development services, works with organizations to identify growth opportunities that can expand their revenues and impact. Visit her websites at and http://www. .


An Intimate Talk About Healthy Inner Fitness with

Ray Leonard, Jr. written by Corretta L. Doctor



The pressures and stress of being a celebrity child can carry over into adult life. The strength of this story is how Ray Leonard, Jr. uses his posture in the industry, along with his personal know-how and gift of positive communication, to enhance and encourage himself while inspiring others. This global speaker is on a mission to share tips, resources, and ‘real talk’ on how to live a life of prosperity, peace, and fulfillment. Ray Leonard, Jr. is a husband, father of four amazing children, coach, mentor, successful entrepreneur, and active community member. Ray is the son of Ray Charles Leonard, popularly known as “Sugar” Ray Leonard, and Juanita Wilkinson. His parents divorced in 1990. Ray graduated from Ohio University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration. Ray travels all over the world speaking to people about encouraging topics. He speaks to audiences with firsthand knowledge of depression caused by stress and peer pressure of being a member of a celebrity family. Not because of the fame, which did come on to the family fairly rapidly, but more so the unpleasant memories Ray has of watching his father abuse his mother, Juanita. Young Ray was stifled in his ability to help his mother. Back in the day, children were taught, emphatically, that what happened in the home, stayed in the home. This started a cycle of secrets and unleashed anger to be bottled up inside many children, including young Ray. Children that have unhealed hurt will become adults that discover they need healing from childhood. Just like many people that are stepping forward to make a difference, Ray was exposed to a father that drank and abused drugs. Ray has never sought professional therapy, but he certainly is Blessed with a support system, and namely a business partner that is a licensed Psychologist. He is encamped with people that listen to him, and he listens back. Ray tells us that his father suffered from depression. Ray has vowed to break the cycle of depression within the generations of his family.


Destructive behavior, diversity and inclusion, and fostering positive environments are all topics that Ray speaks on while delivering stellar talks to soldiers, civilians, and youth. Ray did not start out seeking a career as a motivational speaker, in fact, he got his start when he was invited to come speak at a San Diego military base. He went, armed with his personal experience and a desire to share his testimony and from that opportunity, his speaking career was launched. Ray spoke to me from a place of concern and care for others. His message of hope and encouragement shined through the entire interview. He came across as authentic and not canned and that is also how he says he delivers his speeches. I am certain that his transparency, and speaking from a place of humbleness led him to becoming the phenomenal platform speaker that he is. “I never wanted to be the person that follows in the shadows”- Ray Leonard, Jr. Ray is developing a formal mentoring program and he is writing a youth survival guide that will double as a workbook. It is scheduled to be released Winter 2020. Ray says, “I started writing the book while at home with my kids during this Covid-19 situation.” He says the book talks about stress, peer pressure, and mental health and it is a journal type book that kids can write down their thoughts, issues, and pains on how they are feeling at the time. They can go back and look at it and say you know what, this was a task for me, but I don’t have to feel bad about it because that is where I was at that time, but I am getting better now. I applaud Ray for standing up to help others. He has many things he could be doing, yet he made a choice to serve others in the capacity that many would have shun away from. Ray, like many other celebrities, are in support of mental well being and the mental inner fitness, and for that we applaud those that can help. Yet, there are many that can’t help because they too need help. Ray, along with his business partner, offer support

and counseling services to help people get the help they need to be mentally ready to face life challenges, particularly those areas of life that cause mental health challenges like depression. Depression, defined as feelings of severe despondency and dejection, does not discriminate. Communication is key and journaling is essential. Every person is unique in their quest to be happy and healthy. Find a way to connect with someone that understands all too well the need to heal, and is taking necessary steps to help others heal too. Visit to connect and engage with Ray. He is the host of ‘It’s Your Life’ Podcast and is a successful entrepreneur. He lives by the motto, of which he credits to his grandfather, #knowbetterdobetter.

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r e k a M r o v la

F f e i h C

Chef Angela Chester-Johnson

written by Alesha Brown Creating delicious new recipes by mixing herbs and spices seems easy for Chef Angela Chester-Johnson. Sharing homemade blends with friends became such a passion that she started gardening indigenous herbs as a hobby, becoming her partial food chain supplier. Then, as the universe would have it, her job led her to an abundance of global gardens and kitchens. Angela worked for an international policy and advocacy firm, which focused largely on building business capacity and economic development throughout Africa. During her regular travels there and South East Asia, she not only exchanged policy ideas but also advice on growing plants and harvesting fruits from indigenous trees. Throughout each culture she encountered, she noticed that spices, teas, and herbs were routinely and widely used for culinary and wellness purposes. She caught the bug and, before long, was talking teas and speaking spices! Enhancing food flavor and making healthy taste good became her kitchen calling. When asked where her culinary zeal came from, Angela replied: “My passion for culinary exploration started early in life. Growing up in my house, good meals meant being surrounded by family, friends, great stories, and a lot of fun! I viewed kitchens as the epicenter of our family’s life. Cooking was and is a happy and creative space for me – my artistry. This summer during Covid-19, we partnered with World Central Kitchen Chef ’s for America program and prepared 1,000 beautiful meals per week for nine weeks to feed seniors who were sheltered in and the homeless. It was one of the most rewarding experiences that I have had as a chef.” “When it is delicious, nutritious, and well prepared, sharing food is love.”

– Chef Angela Chester-Johnson, Chief Flavor Maker In addition to practicing and perfecting her kitchen game by learning the metric system, (which is used to measure ingredients in almost every other country in the world except the US and Liberia), Chef Angela learned about botany, foraging, and supporting sustainable food supply. She is now affectionately dubbed “the spice lady.” Her blended seasonings, dry teas, cold drinks, sauces, jams, and herb shots are heralded in the DMV (District of Columbia|Maryland|Virginia) region of the United States. The educational component of her culinary exploits often teaches incorporating local and international herbs in recipes, how and when to use spice and herb charts, and conducting food demonstrations on how to prepare featured recipes. Chef Angela says that these activities help to keep her creative juices flowing as well as attract more customers to buy PLUM GOOD products. “If it’s Not Plum Good, It’s Not Good Enough.” – Chef Angela Chester-Johnson, Chief Flavor Maker Home trained and self-taught, Chef Angela is “Making Delicious Easy” for consumers everywhere by creating bold recipes for international seasonings and sauces that make flavors pop! For more than 14 years she has honed her skills by designing, practicing, and studying celebrated professional and home-trained chefs from around the world. After creating over a hundred recipes for food, drinks, condiments, and nutrition supplements, she started Plum Good LLC, a woman and black-owned company to help cooks to increase their culinary IQs and expand their cultural awareness. Whether down-home favorites or global cuisine, Plum Good’s rubs, blends, marinades, and proprietary mixtures have cooks creating magic in their kitchens.

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Since its inception in 2009, Plum Good, LLC has grown to be a recognized brand with a product line that includes spices, teas, tea infusers, sauces, and snacks shipped around the world. Her business model has also expanded to include the culinary education classes “The Story of Spice” and “The Art of Tea”; a “Spice is Right” subscription box, gourmet “Hot Pops” spiced popcorn, and “Full Flavor” catering. Plum Good’s products have been distributed in multiple food retailers and restaurants in Washington, DC. Most recently, Plum Good, LLC was awarded an exclusive space at the Washington DC Event & Sports Arena.


The company’s newest product is PLUMBO sauce – a highly versatile sweet and savory sauce, which got its name from a play on the name of the District of Columbia’s beloved Mumbo sauce and her company’s name. Look out for PLUMBO recipe cards which will be posted on www. starting October 2020. “Our goal is to create fabled flavors, international recipes, and delicious food that bring the people of the world closer, one kitchen at a time.” – Chef Angela Chester-Johnson, Chief Flavor Maker

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The Natural


Keever Murdaugh, also known as K. Lernise, was born and raised in Kingstree, SC. She is the CEO & Founder of K. Lernise Naturals, LLC. Her brand encompasses a natural hair and skincare company (K. Lernise Naturals), a boutique & gift shop (Keever’s, The Natural Choice Boutique & Gift Shop), a travel company (Travels by Keever) and a servicing & consultant company (KLM Servicing & Consulting). With these businesses, she empowers women to be their best self. She is the oldest of three sisters. She was raised by her Mother after her parents divorced. Imagine a house filled with ladies…no wonder hair is of great importance to K. Lernise! “I believe that women carry the pressures of everyday life such as juggling careers, family and mental wellbeing while wearing many hats. Many neglect their inner and outer being because they are too busy. My platforms help women to slow down and pamper themselves all while loving and embracing who they are. It is important that women know that they are worthy and that they are enough,” says K. Lernise.

K. Lernise reflects on her childhood, “Living in Kingstree, SC was quite humbling. In this small town of about 3,000 my mother worked two, sometimes three, jobs to support us. She did not rely on government assistance but, instead she worked relentlessly to care for all of us. I truly admire her strength and tenacity.


She raised me with strong work ethics and integrity, and I thank God for her. I now reside in Camden, SC with my husband and youngest daughter. Our oldest child (son) is a proud Army soldier”. We wanted to take an in depth look into the life of this beautiful and talented entrepreneur. cM: Tell us about your Ministry, do you offer Counseling and do you Pastor a Church at this time? K. Lernise: Outside of K. Lernise Naturals, I am also an Ordained Minister. Currently I serve as an Associate Pastor and I work very closely with female Teens and Young adults within our state and local congregation. Locally at my church, I founded a group called The Virtuous Women Group where I teach young women the importance of exercising faith, relying on the strength of God and understanding that they are “… fearfully and wonderfully made… Psalm 139:14”. I offer counseling services to singles and couples of all ages with a concentration in teenage females and young adults. cM: Tell us about your love for the hair industry and how you got started? K. Lernise: My love for the hair industry is rooted from my own personal experiences. I started this wonderful journey on November 23, 2013. Almost 7 years ago, I got so frustrated with the condition of my then relaxed hair. At that moment, I was suffering from breakage, dryness, split ends and thinning. My hair was coming out by the handful and I was at my wits end. My daughter was also an inspiration for going natural. She was struggling with embracing her own natural beauty. She said to me that she did not think that she was beautiful because she did not look like me. What she meant was that I had straight hair and her hair was thick and curly. As a mom, it was difficult trying to convince her that she is the most beautiful being to me all while I was not embracing my true self. It was at that moment that I decided to big chop and go natural. Once I decided to go natural, I realized then that this process was not as easy as I thought. My hair was so damaged and dry that I literally had to research and learn my hair, what it liked and what it did not like. I spent hundreds and maybe thousands of dollars

on products for not only myself but for my daughter as well. It was difficult finding products for the both of us and products that works long term. Out of this frustration, I began researching and creating products for us both. I found that our hair was loving our products, so I ventured out to friends and family who also loved our products, then eventually formed a business, K. Lernise Naturals. Now I spend a lot of time teaching and educating other naturals how to properly maintain their natural tresses and embrace their natural hair journey. I love talking about natural hair and it hurts when many give up and choose to return to relaxers to manage their hair. I do my best to make myself available because in the long run, I believe that natural hair is healthy hair. cM: How long have you been Natural and what prompted your change (if at one time you were not natural) K. Lernise: I’ve been natural for almost 7 years. I big chopped on November 23, 2013. I was prompted for change because I went from shoulder length relaxed hair to damaged short, relaxed hair. My hair was breaking like crazy and I was losing hair by the handful. I also decided to go natural to show my daughter that you CAN be natural and beautiful. Once I went natural I saw an instant change in my daughter’s perspective about her natural hair. She immediately began to embrace and love it. She was so excited because she saw herself in her mother and that alone was worth it. cM: What is the heart and soul of your business, what makes your company thrive? K. Lernise: The heart and soul of my business is my customers. It’s because of them that our natural hair product line is growing and reaching may people who need our services and that our natural boutique is catering to many women within our local community. Our customers is not only the source of our resources, but they are the purpose for us continuing to fight in the midst of this pandemic. I know that I am still needed because there are still many people that just don’t know what to do with their hair. As long as there is still a need, then I am willing to fill it. cM: What is the best accomplishment you have reached in your business to date?

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K. Lernise: I would have to say that the best accomplishment I have reached in my business is being able to open a brick and mortar. I not only house my natural hair and skin care products, but I provide an opportunity for other business owners to have a store front for their businesses as well. In my boutique we have natural hair and skincare products, immune boosters, pain relief products, candles, soaps, home décor, handbags, jewelry, women apparel, and more. I am glad to be able to provide a space that is in our local community, that caters to our local community and that is activity contributing to the growth of our local community. cM: What is the next big thing for you and your business? K. Lernise: I envision the next big thing for my business is definitely honing in more on the consultation side of business. I believe that there are still so many people that need my services and I really want to focus on the education of Natural hair care. I just added the servicing & consulting firm to my business, so I plan to put it to good use buy hosting virtual events, youth seminars, natural webinars, etc.


“Be Beyoutiful”, says K. Lernise. She adds, “I believe that everyone should have the experience to love and embrace who they are. The bible says that we are made in his image. When I think of that scripture, I think of the strength, faith and tenacity of Jesus Christ. I believe that we are made to endure many things. There is a saying, what doesn’t kill us make us stronger and I believe that life throws us many teaching moments. It is in those moments that we choose how to react to them. Do we chose to allow those situations to make us fold under the weight and pressure of the issue(s) or do we find ways to climb over those stumbling blocks?” K Lernise leaves you all with this thought: “You are stronger than any situation that comes your way. Pull up your bootstraps, adjust your helmet and deal with it head on. Once on the other side, you will be able to look back and see just how far you’ve come. Everything seems hard while you’re going through things, but brighter days are ahead”. Natural hair is a choice, but being empowered is a right. Be sure to contact K. Lernise and stay empowered! Email, Websites and www. You can find K. Lernise on social media at Facebook. com/k.lernisenaturals and on Instagram at @klernisenaturals. Boutique: Located at 2639D Broad St, Camden, SC 29020. (803) 572-5509. Feel free to book a Natural Hair Consultation appointment online at

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Music of the

Mind & Heart

Rashida Moore is an artist with a desirably soothing sound! The lyrics stay on your mind and the melody vibrates in your heart. Her music is as beautiful as she is, and we are so excited to share her story with you!

Rashida Moore’s earliest memory of singing for an audience was when she was 9 years old. “I would perform, dancing and singing, imitating Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean for family and friends at summer cook outs. I had so much enthusiasm. I was eager and unafraid, and the elders would pay me to perform. They were very supportive and encouraging to my artist self. I used to walk away with some good money too, to buy goodies at the corner store (laugh). Also, I would perform hits like Stephanie Mills’s “Home” and Whitney Houston’s “Greatest Love of All” at my Elementary School in DC (Wheatley) in the assemblies”. Rashida released her first project titled, ‘Ask Me Again’, this past March 2020. She decided that she wanted to start giving her energy to her authentic self and share her gifts. “I’ve had so much fear in my life, feeling like my true self wouldn’t work for me. I was discouraged a lot and with time I realized that it was nothing more than fear. I was no longer willing to let fear hold me back anymore. I now feel that every one of us that are born into the world has a contribution in our lifetime and we have an obligation to share our gifts. We have so much to offer each other. Someone out there is counting on us and needs our contributions”.


“Music is the truest expression of feelings. Music doesn’t hold back. It is the most effective way of relaying messages. It’s complete, complex and has the unique ability to alter mood instantaneously. Music has power. From one measure to the next it can make you cry, laugh, reflect, release tension, make you feel tense, excited, bring people together, tear them apart...that’s power.” Music is used in therapy and rehabilitation programs around the globe. It is a universal passion that heals. We asked Rashida about her next project and here is what she told us, “My latest project is a video from my most recent song release, “Colorblind”. Colorblind is a song about people being shades of brown, not black and white. It tells about human beings being creations of God and God as an artist that has no limitations and uses all color in everything. I think it’s absurd to classify people according to skin color the way we do. And to limit it to black and white is really baffling. We are humans. All of the human race and when we can see everyone else as we see ourselves there isn’t much room for hate. I wrote Colorblind so that people could start to see the beauty in one another”. Rashida not only sings, bur she plays the piano, guitar and ukulele too! Her favorite insurrument is the guitar! She says, “I play mostly chord progressions to get the bones of my songs in place and get the point that

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I’m trying to make across. After that, for profession recordings I usually let a band or producer take it from there. I play well enough to relay to them musically what I want to say”.


With so much talent, we were curious to know about Rashida’s roots. “I do come from a background of music. Music was a part of every single day in my family. My mother sings and her mother, my grandmother, had a

beautiful sultry voice. My grandfather told me that my grandmother had the most beautiful voice he had ever heard and that she used to sing Ella Fitzgerald songs in Clubs back in their day. My father is a musician. He

plays the trumpet. He has played for the church as long as I can remember. My favorite songs to hear him play are Shadow of Your Smile and Feels so Good by Chuck Mangione”. Rashida proudly announces that her favorite artist is Stevie Wonder. “He has so much to give. His lyrics are out of this world and he grooves. When you really listen to every word that his lyrics are saying it gives you so many visuals and I think that’s incredible for someone who is blind. Also, you can feel his love for music in his performance. I saw him in concert a few years back and even when the show was supposed to be over he kept going, performing many more songs. He didn’t want to stop. He gave the feeling that he wanted to be there with us all night. He’s extraordinary”. Let’s talk about goals! “The next big thing for me in the music industry is to win a Grammy. But more importantly I want to be consistent while remaining authentic with my content. Balance. It’s so important to me that I don’t water my art down just trying to come up with anything to put out. But I’d like to win a Grammy. Being recognized is special. I know it sounds a bit superficial, but I think it’s nice when people appreciate your work and contributions”. Rashida shows up and shows out! She is the voice that rings in your head long after the song has ended. We love everything about the music and artistry of this amazing performer! Readers can contact Rashida on Instagram @borntowritesongs, on Facebook at Rashida Z @borntowritesongs and her website is:

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The Hope Effect Grief is a feeling of deep sorrow, especially caused by someone’s death. Grief is a process that we all endure some time in our lives. The healing process is unique and varies from one person to the next with no apparent common thread. But there is always hope! Hope is a feeling of expectation. Hope is the exit strategy for a grieving person to heal from emotional pain. Hope leads to brighter tomorrows. Nickcole Byrd understood the need for hope to thrive. One year ago, Nickcole Byrd, affectionally know as Nikki suffered a traumatic loss. Her husband Peter Byrd died very suddenly and unexpectedly, leaving her and their three children to live without him. Tragedy and loss have shown Nikki and her family the sovereignty and sufficiency of God's hand in the middle of their hurt and disappointment. During this journey, Nickole learned to grieve well and develop a manifest of hope. To grieve well is to grieve from a healthy place. A place to work on moving forward. Not so much focusing on what was lost but celebrating what is left. It was identifying how I could grow from this tragedy. Nikki has made a pact with herself and God to become

mentally and emotionally healthy. Her “today” story looks different than it did a year ago because her life changed. It did not end, it changed. Nikki says,” In this season, though the assignment may have changed, I believe the calling is still the same, to heal the brokenhearted. The plans I had for my life, all of it shifted. I feel like some of it was a realignment from God. So many times, things in our lives distract us, get us off course, but God’s divine hand will allow situation and circumstance to get us back into alignment. I am not saying for sure that my husband’s passing was a cause for my calling, but it allowed me to become more clearer about God’s calling and purpose for my life”. Nikki forged her way through a tough situation. She lost her husband of 24 years with no warning. Peter was her partner. He was the yin to her yang. He was constant support that allowed her to be in ministry and successful in business. For more than half of their lives, they were ‘one’. Turning around her pain, and creating purpose was inescapable. The call on her live was her resolve. She had to find a way to move past the traumatic pain. “I decided to educate myself on the grief process and trauma-informed healing. I prayed communiqué Magazine


and read God's word on the matters of the heart. These things, along with community support and therapy, helped me to see beyond my circumstance”, says Nikki.

I asked Nikki to talk about the importance of mental fitness and how it helped her during her grieving process, and this is what she shared, “It is so important because out of it everything in your life flows. Your mental space allows for creativity; innovation to produce purpose-driven results. I maintain my mental space by making sure I am being aware of how I am feeling, doing check-ins with myself, and making sure my thoughts and feelings are in alignment with God's plan and hope for my life. Nikki isn’t new as a Hope Dealer. She always has a way of casting the anchor of hope to others, even when they don’t know that she is doing it. Nikki is still grieving. Grief is, the bottom line going through the process of missing life as it once was. As she journeys through her transformative process and moves through her pain, she saw the opportunity for growth for others. This process birthed her new course, The Hope Effect. This course is for anyone dealing with a loss. If you are unable to manage your emotions because of the loss of a job, loss of a relationship, or loss of a loved one then The Hope Effect is for you. For more information about The Hope Effect Course, go to Youtube: Facebook:


The First Lady of Sax

Corinthia Cromwell

written by C. NaTasha Richburg

It was the exciting occasion of my friend’s 30th wedding anniversary. Love was in the air. Elegance filled the atrium with loving family, friends and church members as part of the semi-formal occasion all dressed in black with gold accessories. The beautifully decorated room hinted that something extraordinary was about to happen. The beats of the DJ resonated in sync with the festivities as we awaited the entry of the honored couple. The honorees finally graced the room, greeted happily by every guest. The MC introduced national recording artist Corinthia Cromwell, aka the First Lady of Sax (FLOS), a phenomenal saxophonist. The atmosphere of the room rose to the next level of celebratory acceleration, all of us swept away by FLOS’ skillfully passionate performance. Blessed with gifts as a gospel, jazz, and R&B saxophonist, FLOS also has vocal abilities to complement the blissful flow of her

saxophone. This composer, multi-instrumentalist, and bandleader is a walking billboard for the attributes of an anointed musician. With two internationally released CD recordings and three international single releases from her latest recordings under her belt, FLOS has been established as “one of the most anointed musicians of this era.” FLOS’s self-produced releases in 2016 include Trinity 3:1 and Great Day. An additional highlight of FLOS’ career was a residency at Two River Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey. As the saxophone voice in the play, OO-BLA-DEE, FLOS follows the story of Evelyn Waters and the Diviners, an all-black, all-female jazz band as they travel from St. Louis to Chicago to set up a record deal following the end of World War II. One review called it “an insightful show, a jazz lover’s experience.” The COVID-19 pandemic has required musicians like FLOS to pivot. Corinthia’s response to communiqué Magazine


questions about the subject is an encouraging tale. How has the pandemic impacted my musical journey? Initially, I thought that the pandemic would cause a setback in the release of my new music, and so I canceled all my performances and tours. It also forced me to be creative in how I record and release my music. I believe this pandemic has forced us all to think outside the box and develop new ways to share our music with our audience. There are always pros and cons to any new situation, and I have found that looking at the positives in this situation is healthier than wasting time on the negatives. This pandemic has given me the opportunity to slow down, reconnect with family, and write more music that speaks to the soul and spirit of the listener. What are you planning to do first when the world opens again? No one really knows when this pandemic shall end, but when it does, the first thing that I want to do is to have a live outdoor music festival where audiences and musicians can get together, eat, dance, and enjoy being close again. The power of a hug is so therapeutic and necessary for the growth of the soul. I look forward to traveling abroad to perform and promote the new music that will come from all the time spent apart. It is my hope that people will have a greater appreciation for one another and the freedom that we have enjoyed in this country for centuries. What do you want the audience to know? I would like for the audience to know that music is so amazing because it has the power to touch the spirit and soul, and it is what is in the heart of the artist that determines the magnitude of its impact. It has always been my mission to create and perform music that speaks to and changes the heart and soul. FLOS is a seasoned professional who has performed onstage with some of the music industry’s most notable artists in gospel and jazz such as Grammywinning trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, pianist extraordinaire Cyrus Chestnut, jazz violinist Ken Ford, jazz saxophonist Marion Meadows, and more. Performances at the Kennedy Center and the National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington, DC offer extraordinary experiences that also extend outside the US to the UK, Switzerland, Japan, Sweden, Canada, and France. Learn more about Corinthia at:


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communiquĂŠ Magazine


The Power and Tenacity OF

F R I E N D SH I P written by Corretta L. Doctor

The world is filled with opportunities to be kind.

On a trip to Dubai, United Arab Emirates we worked, and we played, and we laughed, and we cried….ok, well it was

I am being intentional in my actions to show empathy,

me that did the crying, and it was them that stood in the gap

compassion, and kindness. In business you have to know

for me. I witnessed the power of friendship as we shared the

how to pair your positive momentum with your business

journey of being three African American women working

acumen. In your personal life you have to know how to

together in the middle east. I found myself in the center of

manage your mood, behavior, and attitude when you are

a personal storm and my colleagues stood tall and never let

projecting positivity into the atmosphere. Everything you do

me fail. I did not feel embarrassed or ashamed that a part

is an opportunity to show your good side. When you have

of my personal life was interrupting my business plans. I

experienced so much negativity, bad vibes, raw emotions,

did feel empowered to step aside and allow my colleagues

insensitivity, and straight-out pain, you know what it is like

to keep the work moving while I took a self-care moment

to need something good come your way.

to gather myself. Time does not wait. We had an obligation to stand before several rooms of school aged children and

I respect the power of friendship. Friendship is one of the

with my emotional break, I was not in a position to speak

most powerful relationships that people can foster, and

to the school children as planned. But what would the

friendship is really necessary during these uncertain times.

school officials think? We had traveled thousands of miles

You have to develop a tenacity of being a friend and you

across the Atlantic ocean and I was not able to step up to

have to be friendly. I work alongside two women that are the

the microphone and talk. Dr. Anita and C. NaTasha took

epitome of the word friend.

over. One spoke while the other managed to capture the work we were doing on video. They did not ridicule me,

The first, C. NaTasha Richburg, is an amazing talent- on

nor make me feel unworthy. They built me up through their

and off the grid. The second, Anita Davis-DeFoe, is an


extraordinary person with an infinite reach into the souls of women around the world. These two ladies are my friends,

I remember going back to our hotel and realizing that these

and my colleagues. Friendship and business relations are

ladies not only cared about themselves, but they really

often regarded as impossible, or tough to navigate, but I can

cared about me. They did not focus on my “sad story”, they

assure you that between the three of us, C. NaTasha, Anita,

focused on how my “glad story” is what got us to Dubai and

and I are forces to reckon with in the boardroom or in the

how successful our trip had been, NOT because one of us

band room.

came and did well, but because the three of us contributed to the overall success of the trip. Each of us understands the


importance of being empathetic to the emotional needs of one another. Each of us understands what compassion is

Every opportunity to be kind belongs to you.

and how to leverage that compassion with encouragement. We all express ourselves through random, and intentional

C. NaTasha Richburg taught me to turn into the spin. Mrs.

acts of kindness in all that we do for each other.

Richburg provides 360 degree services for indie artists to include, music production, touring, talent management,

Kindness exists. Without a doubt, no matter what my

video production. film production, artist development and

colleagues experience, good or bad, I am positioned to

life coaching services. She is an excellent celebrity writer,

support them and cheer them on. I have a great appreciation

and she is a friend and colleague to me. We have traveled

for the power of friendship in business. Life is going to

to Germany, France (twice), Dubai, and England together.

happen. It does not discriminate. Gather a circle of people

Visit her website at

that you can trust with your personal life while entrusting them with your business life. It is possible to have friendship

Dr. Anita Davis DeFoe teaches me about self-care. Dr. DeFoe

among colleagues.

is an Author, a Global Educator, a Business Professional, a Social Entrepreneur, and a strong advocate for mentorship

Gone are the days of separating work from play. Know what

in women and children. She is a world traveler, and she

your mission is and understand whose on your team. Know

is a friend and colleague to me. We have traveled to

the boundaries and respect them. Grow your friendship by

France and Dubai together. Visit her websites at www.

respecting the work you have to do together. Grow your and http://www.johncmaxwellgroup.

business by respecting the personal relationships you build

com/anitadavisdefoe .

with your team and colleagues. It can work.

communiquĂŠ Magazine



written by Corretta L. Doctor Cheryl A. Pullins has been around the world talking

to build a plan on how she will help you succeed. Her

to men and women about branding. Last year she was

ability to get clients from point A to point Z is impressive.

in Paris, France. Next year she will be in Reykjavik,

She studies the person, the product, the service, and

Iceland! Today we are going to introduce you to the

the client’s goal with full intention to deliver a solution.

heart and soul of Cheryl, and from that you will

We all know what we want our business to look and

understand what branding means to her….and why

feel like to potential clients; Cheryl Pullins will get you

branding must be important to you, too.

to that place. Remember YOU encompass your brand. You reflect everything you offer to others.

Who is Cheryl A. Pullins? Cheryl was born in New York City, New York and raised in Philadelphia,

A few things that I have learned from Cheryl over the

Pennsylvania. With more than 20 years of corporate

years include:

Human Resources experience, 4 years of publishing

• • • •

a magazine for women, plus 10 years of running her own coaching practice with the addition of a branding agency, Cheryl has long been in the business of

Align your walk with your words. Practice the art of compassion. Master communication. Lead from your heart.

helping her clients elevate their star power. Some of her titles are Personal Branding Strategist, Women's

Have you ever heard the saying, “the hairdresser cannot

Empowerment Advocate, who was featured at

do her own hair”? It does not apply to Cheryl. If ever

TEDx, Success Coach, Corporate Trainer and let me

there is an ICON in personal branding, Cheryl wears

add, friend. Cheryl is serious, fun, and smart. She is

that title boldly, and literally. Her remarkable love of

conscious, and courageous, in her quest to empower

lip colors from brands such as Tom Ford and M-A-C

business professionals to stand up, and stand out, with

along with her vibrant wardrobe and stylish eyewear

their brand. Cheryl represents her work in all she does,

have set the stage for Cheryl’s colorful presence in any

and says.

room. When she stands in front of the audience to teach, the words we all need to hear flow so easily as

A humble and honest woman, Cheryl takes her time

she paces her speech in an effort for every person in the

with her work. She uses your energy and your passions

room to absorb the lessons on designing a brand that


will produce revenue. No need to look good and not be noticed, so in order for you to produce an income from your iconic brand, Cheryl takes her teachings a step further and shows you how to expand your brand. From podcast development to social media engagement, Cheryl knows how to engage with existing clients and build relationships with new clients while also connecting to new potential clients. Working with Cheryl is seamless. She doesn’t haggle about her services or the prices you will pay - her business acumen is spectacular and her mission in business is clear. You need to grow your presence in the marketplace - the new global economy - and Cheryl is the answer to that need. The world is speeding up. Instead of conference rooms and board rooms, businesses are now flowing through the digital spaces at the speed of light. You have to have a brand that exceeds the basic requirements of a logo, a title, and a color scheme for your website. Don’t fail your business by improperly branding it. Cheryl


established, the



reinvented of


successfully and



companies. Get started now. Visit www.

communiqué Magazine



Toy Addington

Toy Addington

International Business Coach written by Corretta L. Doctor

How many of you have ever sat and thought about your mind, mood, and money as a cohesive train of thought? Separately we think of these things all of the time, but put them together and you will view them differently. Sit for a moment and have a collective thought on how ‘what you think’ and ‘how you feel’ can change your money, or let’s say your ability to earn it. You need to know Toy Addington.

maturely to resolve any situation that you face. The goal is to give you the secret sauce to help you Hack Your Happy.

Toy Addington is the founder and CEO of ‘I Can’T Coaching, LLC’, the parent company to ICC Life Coach Institute, LLC and ICC Life Coach Institute, LLC Online Business School. She is an American success story. Starting life on her own at age 15, and soon to be a young teenaged Mom, Toy Addington is now a successful Master Level Coach with a thriving business and beautiful family. From the beginning, Toy stepped into adulthood with a plan to be better than what the statistics would predict. She exceeded every goal she set and makes no excuses for the blazing path she has created on her trek towards success in both, her professional and personal lives.

Toy credits her education, which includes a Psychology Degree, magna cum laude, a Natural Science Degree, magna cum laude and Master Certified Professional Life Coach. Armed with no option to fail, a solid education, and an impressive suite of professional licenses and certifications, for her success. She tells -Ette Magazine that her education gave her the fundamentals of coaching, brought awareness to herself and then taught her how to understand the different types of clients she would encounter in her line of work. The important lesson on interpersonal engagement and working with a diverse client base is understanding how to properly transform all clients and coaches. However, the biggest Credit she gives for her success is getting the experience of over 3,200 hours of coaching and certifying coaches, leading business FaceBook live sessions, doing sold out workshops, writing, and networking in a domestic and international space.

Toy is the poster woman for resilience and offers this meaningful definition, “To me, resilience means having the strength, courage and ability to quickly and mentally “bounce back” in any given situation.” Resilience is how Toy takes power in any position to preserve and live in a state of peace. Toy consistently repeats her company’s motto “I Can’T Let Anything Control My Mind, Mood, or Money.” Toy tells -Ette Magazine that her company motto has helped her and many others to stop and think before reacting. The motto will remind you to work quickly, resiliently, and

“I would not have been able to accumulate the knowledge and the “know how” I have used to help people transform individuals’ minds, mood, and money without the experience. The feedback from people is priceless. I have learned so much from coaching not only about myself but about just how much alike that we really are. We are all connected and have some of the same desires, fears, joys, pain, and pleasures. Even though we may come from different backgrounds, creeds, economic statues we all want to end up at the same destination in the end, to be happy.” communiqué Magazine


With an impressive virtual international presence, Toy looks to further expand her operations in other countries. As a globally accredited institution, Toy endeavors to help aspiring and current entrepreneurs eliminate the stress of starting or growing their business. As a result of working with ICC Life Coach Institute you can get Certified as a Coach in any area (Life Coach, Personal Development Coach etc.). The company offers two certifications, Certified Professional Coach or Master Certified Professional Coach and 6 Streams to 6 Figures business building live in 3 days. Toy’s company also has an online business school that has templates to help you with developing your business plan, social media marketing strategy, business funding and more. If you are a Coach and do not have a certification, this is your opportunity to work with a professional organization that can help you add immediate value to your business. Why does a Coach need a Coach? A coach needs a coach for the same reason clients need coaches. Coaches get stuck and stressed out too. Coaches want to keep their businesses growing too. Everyone needs a safe environment where things are clear so they can show up in their best SELF to complete the successful growth of their business and excel at accomplishing goals personally and professionally. Certified Professional credentialed coaches have the skill, scientific tools, and experience to properly guide other coaches through life with intent and integrity. Coaches fill the gap between were you are to where you want to be while holding you accountable and getting you results. Toy says “Keep going! With all the turmoil that is going on you have to keep in mind that you are responsible for YOU regardless of what is going on in the world around us. You are more important than any circumstance. I am not telling you to ignore the turmoil. I am simply saying be kind to yourself and disconnect before it destroys you. Welcome Home! Remember YANA (you are not alone)! I believe in you, you are worthy! Now go out there and change the world and tell them Coach Toy sent you.” The journey to CEO was filled with challenges for Toy


Addington. She does not stand alone. Many successful CEO’s have journeyed through some mighty tough roads and never gave up. Add Toy Addington, and the many clients that she is coaching, to that list of successors. She is living her dream while building alongside many that have trusted her to propel them and their businesses forward. Find strength in the testimony of others and remember you have everything you need to succeed. Fuel your fears with a passion to win and your battle will be won every time. Toy Addington resides in Tennessee. She is an International Speaker, highly sought-after Mentor and a Savvy Business Coach and Trusted Advisor. Toy welcomes the opportunity to network with you. Visit www.ICCLifeCoachInstitute. com or email to learn more and connect with Toy Addington. Remember the motto when you need some motivation: ‘I Can’T Let Anything Control My Mind, Mood or Money’.

communiquĂŠ Magazine



Thanks WAIT For Making Me

not fail them. They that wait on the Lord on purpose, those who trust God no matter what or how long it takes encounter a move of God’s hand in uncommon ways. His grace overtakes our problems and situations and protects us from the enemies intentions. Having the picture fixed in your mind that you are waiting on God, not your first, second, or forth cousin twice removed, but God the one who will not fail you is what is needed for a waiting victory.

written by Apostle J. L. Cash Waiting is something not enjoyed by many but something many of us have to do from time to time. Wait is a four letter word that sometimes insults us when we’re asked to do it. Having to wait is often very hard and very unpleasant, yet our greatest blessings are found while in waiting.

This state of mind triggers our deepest most inner FAITH. Tell yourself, I trust God for my here and now and my there and then. Wait on Purpose, expect and turn each day into a day of possibilities and victory by expecting everyday to be the day. If it doesn’t happen on Monday get up on Tuesday looking for it again.

Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.

They that wait, if at anytime they are tried to the point of discouragement or weakened by the struggle ““They Shall Recover”. They shall change their strength as their work is changed. They shall have strength to labor, strength to wrestle and strength to resist. You will walk and run into “DUE SEASON”.

This is a very well known passage of scripture that sounds good but in many cases is very hard to do. To have faith enough to wait on purpose is a weapon the enemy can’t counter. They who wait ““on purpose” not out of fear, but because they truly believe God will come through for them will find that God will

Our waiting causes us to be POISED TO REAP the benefits of our purpose. Often times God wants to distinguish you, he places you in a light of distinction either by your blessings or your adversities. With God nothing you go through is wasted. All things really and truly do work together for your good. A period communiqué Magazine


For Making Me



So rejoice, be glad, and tell him Thanks For Making Me Wait. It was hard but it made you better, it blinded you for a while but it was in that blindness You discovered your destiny and found your purpose. Waiting helped you let go of what You thought You wanted and embrace what you really needed. Tell Him ““Thanks For Making Me Wait!”


of waiting always proceed New Creation. When God is about to do something new in your life you will often find yourself in his waiting room. If you’re in the waiting room right now it’s by appointment only. The evening and the morning will bring about a new day. Do not allow TREPIDATIOUS THINKING to stop you or your blessings. There are some who won’t make the trip with you. Sometimes we don’t want to let them go and God have to perform what I call relational amputation. Be careful to surround yourself with friends and family who love you paramedically. You know, the ones who will come to the place of your Life- crash or accident and pull you to life. Keeping love around you is important. It hurts sometimes but if you love until it hurts when the pain subsides only LOVE abides. At these little wait stations in life we learn and grow often without even realizing we’re changing at all. It’s time to breath in, breath out and move on. Get up, and this time make your bed. A well made up bed is the essence of many pulls and tucks. In life sometimes you have to pull yourself into some places while you tuck yourself into others to ready yourself for your new day. No more getting up in life, running to the bathroom and returning to the same old spot of do nothing. New beginnings are found at old ending.


So Much More than a Food Story: Meet Sherry McCarver written by Corretta L. Doctor Let’s set the record straight, Sherry McCarver did not come to play. She is the Queen of Toledo, Ohio when it comes to grill etiquette and the amazing cuisine she offers up at her Food Truck, MC”CRAVERS” BBQ”. That is not a typo, Mrs. McCarver knew that once patrons tasted her kickin’ and sassy barbecue they would develop an undeniable ‘CRAVING’ for her menu items. “When you are hungry, you crave,” says Sherry. Thus, she named her establishment with a play on her last name, McCarver combined with the word craver. “Barbecue or barbeque (informally, BBQ; in Australia barbie, in South Africa braai) is a cooking method, a cooking device, a style of food, and a name for a meal or gathering at which this style of food is cooked and served.” To clarify, when you grill food, you cook it with direct heat on the bottom and the lid is up. When you barbecue, you cook with a slow circumvented unit of hot air with the lid closed. When I grew up in my small hometown in South Carolina, about 76 miles south of Columbia, I attended many barbecues! A barbecue meant a gathering that would be

made memorable by the smell of charcoal and good food. There would usually be leftovers that we would eat for several days to come. It meant smiles, hugs, loud music, dancing, laughter, folding chairs, babies in walkers, and kids running around the backyard while adults congregated in the front or off to the side. It meant neighbors coming up to the door with bags and boxes of food and drinks and it meant the age old issue that occurs at these gatherings: the inevitable debate about “who” in the family makes THE best barbecue, and then the next part is, “who” makes THE best barbecue sauce? Sherry is in her seventh year of business as the proprietor of MC“CRAVERS” BBQ, a food truck establishment locate at 2265 Dorr Street in Toledo, Ohio. The restaurant was formerly positioned at 5901 Dorr Street. Sherry purchased the land where she is now and has started building a strong legacy for her children and grandchildren to carry on through the years. Before we get to the menu, let us take you back to the core of this story: how Sherry became inspired. Sherry’s grandmother raised her. The late Mrs. Rosie Reid

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did a fabulous job preparing her beloved Shery for life, and for the world of business, and both are areas that Sherry excelled in. Grandmother Rosie told Sherry to never forget where she came from and never take NO for an answer. Sherry is the third oldest of seven children, and the only of her six siblings to be in the BBQ business. Sherry remembers all of the influential memories her grandmother instilled along their journey together. Sherry’s grandmother passed away when Sherry was age 19, just at the age where she would need to live out the lessons her grandmother taught her. Sherry, is a school bus Driver and the only of a thriving business that has two mobile food trucks now. Sherry is the founder of a sock drive ‘SOCKS’, a great organized donation setup that Sherry started after watching many children step up on her school bus without socks to keep their feet warm. It would be an awesome idea for every reader to mail a pair of socks to support this opportunity for Sherry to serve the children of her community. See the mailing address below.

Sherry Only Collects Kids Socks


Mail donated SOCKS, sized for children of any age, to SHERRY McCarver, 2265 Dorr Street, Toledo, Ohio 43607 Sherry is married to Keith McCarver and they have two beautiful adult daughters, Keishe and Shameka. Sherry is thankful to her family for their support. Sherry also thanks Denny Schaffer, a local radio personality for his continuous support. MC”CRAVERS” BBQ has a menu to satisfy your palate. Using fresh grown vegetables from ‘Nebbie’s Veggies’ garden, she offers beautiful and tasty plates. Nebbie’s Veggies is a garden that is growing on site of MC”CRAVERS” BBQ that was planted by Sherry and Keith’s five year old granddaughter, Stephanie. The garden produces tomatoes and bell peppers, among other vegetables. MC”CRAVERS” BBQ offers a choice of meats that includes fish, chicken, and of course the number one and bestselling menu items are the tasty BBQ Ribs…and not just any ribs! MC”CRAVERS” BBQ has pork and beef ribs that are coated with Sherry’s proprietary sauce and cooked to perfection. They also offer their signature Chili Dog that they have named the ‘Denny Dog’ after family friend, Denny Schaffer. Some of the side dish choices are dirty rice, green beans, pasta salad, and of course Sherry’s baked beans that are a great compliment to any dish you choose! MC”CRAVERS” BBQ caters and delivers for events of any size. Be sure to stop in at MC”CRAVERS” BBQ and tell them we sent you their way. Email MC”CRAVERS” BBQ Staff at .


JABarnes Photography LLC

Photographer: Jerry A Barnes Model: Ngozi Eme Akwari Stylist: JABarnes Photography LLC HMUA: Ngozi Eme Akwari

Credits Managing Editor Alesha Brown Front Cover Design/Lead Designer Brandon Jolly Brandon Graphic Designs Angie Stone Cover and Interior Images: Submitted by Angie Stone’s Staff/Management Table of Contents Watermark Image Photographer: Sowele Model: Tasha Nikolle Back Cover, Page 4, 96 Photography: Martin Studio Photography Model: Liz Nguyen Hair Stylist: Candise Edison Makeup Artist: Samantha Trionfo Stylist: Jeff Martin Location: Skyloft F Rental Studio Baltimore, MD Page 11 Derrick O. Martin Photographer: Marquis Sagnia Page 14 Nanette M. Buchanan Photographer: Ekthesi Advertising Page 19, 20 Charlise Smith Photographer: Kimazing Photos Page 25 Nakia Jordan Photographer: Vincent Media & Consulting Page 27 Onicka Daniel Photographer: Kbana Blaq Photography 99

Page 29 Olympia Kent Photographer: Timothy Brantley Page 32, 33 Daphna Ziman Photographer: Toshi Sakurai Page 35 Daphna Ziman Photographer: Espi Juarez Page 38, 40 Eric Holmes Photographer: RM Photography Page 41, 43 Lasheika Boyd Photographer: Kimazing Photos Page 52 Roosevelt Boles Photographer: Christopher Starr Page 54 Stacey Henry Carr Photographer: Chloe Carr Page 63 Photography: Martin Studio Photography Model: Lynne Baker Location: Skyloft F Rental Studio Baltimore, MD

Page 64 Angela Chester Johnson Photographer: Della Bostick Page 67, 69 Keever ‘K. Lernise’ Murdaugh Photographer: Curtis Ramsay Multifarious Photography Camden, SC Page 72, 73 Rashida Moore Photographer: Tahj Jones Page 75, 77 Nickcole Byrd Photographer: Jay Robinson Page 78, 80 Corinthia Cromwell Photographer: Jason Michael Photography Make-up Artist: Killer Beats Page 81, 82, 83, 84 Corretta L. Doctor C. NaTasha Richburg Anita Davis DeFoe Photographer: Maurice L. Hoover Page 85, 86 Cheryl Pullins Photographer and Stylist: Liz Everett Page 87, 89 Toy Addington Photographer: Greg Moore

communiqué Magazine does not take credit for any Photographs provided by the interviewees. All images are used with the permission granted by the subjects of the articles or by the Photographers listed on the credits page. Any errors or omissions will be corrected on the magazine’s website or in the subsequent issue.

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