A Publication of the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network Summer 2011
DEVELOPING INFLUENTIAL LEADERS
YPN Members Gain Hands-On Leadership Training
M ovement EDITOR’S NOTE: Editor-In-Chief – Courtney McSwain Managing Editors – Garrett James Jewell Jones Design Editor – Kira Harrell Feature Writer – Arika Lawrence Photos By – Wallace Gooden Kira Harrell Garrett James
Want to contribute to In the Movement? Email: features@ nvulypn.org The Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) is an auxiliary organization of the Northern Virginia Urban League. YPN was founded in 1999 as a way to identify and develop future leaders of the community. Through a variety of programs and community service initiatives,YPN supports the mission of the Northern Virginia Urban League and fosters young professional development, social consciousness and civic involvement.
What makes a leader great? It’s a question I often consider when thinking about Northern Virginia and the Washington, D.C. Metro region, which are concentrated with extraordinarily talented people. Indeed, I often joke that all of the overachievers in the world took a group vote and decided to live here. As the epicenter of public affairs and the home of many highdemand industries, it’s no wonder that the Washington, D.C. region is heavily saturated with highly-skilled, ambitious and motivated individuals. But as we move at warp speed to keep up and compete, do we ever stop to think about what it takes to emerge from the pack and stand out as truly great? Further, are we using our leadership potential to make positive change in the world? This month, In the Movement takes on the topic of leadership. In doing so, we zero in on some of the ways that the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) develops great leaders while placing service at the center of its work. In our cover story, Arika Lawrence reports why area young professionals see YPN as an important source for hands-on leadership development. In our impact section, Jewell Jones takes a look at College Survival 101, YPN’s longest running signature program that not only helps inspire high school students to reach their highest potential, but challenges volunteers who plan the event to exceed as well. And Nicole Battle, YPN’s director of community service, writes about her experience becoming a stronger leader by taking on service-oriented leadership roles within the organization. These stories and others all highlight the unique opportunity that YPN provides— a chance to lead through service and learn while doing. Lastly, as I write this note, a new YPN Executive Board readies to lead the organization into its 12th year. In Garrett James’ article “Changing of the Guard” we learn about some of the goals of the 2011-2012 executive board. Here, I will take a small bit of editor’s privilege to thank the retiring board from the 2010-2011 fiscal year for their tireless efforts in moving YPN forward; they are a testament to great leadership indeed. We hope you enjoy this issue. Yours in the Movement,
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT Elijah S. Gelzer Finds Intentional Service Through YPN “I live for opportunities to serve and minister, to network, to look at situations differently through continuous dialogue and to simply have fun! Through YPN, I have created long lasting relationships, created an even better brand for myself and inspired youth to be better than what society has labeled them.”
President’s FAREWELL Message Leadership and Lavern
Leadership has been a common theme throughout the Urban League Young Professionals Movement over the year. However, when I was asked to put my thoughts on leadership on paper, I struggled. If you were to enter the word leadership into a search engine, you would receive an endless stream of books, quotes and definitions. But when I think of great leaders, I think of those who are a combination of innovators, motivators, organizers and listeners. It takes this blend of skills to lead a group of busy young professionals to volunteer their time, talent and treasure to the Urban League Movement. It is the beginning of a new area in the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN). The last of the officers from YPN’s infancy are transitioning out of their roles, and the Northern Virginia Urban League (NOVAUL) President and CEO, Lavern J. Chatman-Brown, is entering a new phase of her life. The next group of Urban Leaguers is coming together to lead NOVAUL and YPN. They are a combination of veterans in the National Urban League Movement, long-time residents of Northern Virginia, and recent college graduates who are new to the area as well as the Urban League. Their unique blend of talents is perfect for keeping YPN on its current trajectory of distinction. I always tell people that what YPN does better than any other organization is develop leaders. When I think back to when I first joined YPN over nine years ago, I have to laugh. My idea of a fundraiser was to hold a bake sale and I thought all I needed was a month to plan a successful event! I certainly learned what is needed to run successful programs as a leader in YPN. YPN’s signature fundraiser, Black Opal, completed a second successful year and other groups in Northern Virginia use our template for event planning as a model. All of this would not have been possible without the leadership of Lavern; during her tenure, Lavern pushed YPNers to new heights with an expectation of excellence in everything. Lavern and I began our leadership roles in the Northern Virginia Urban League around the same time, so we have a special relationship. More than a leader, she is a mentor and friend. She is a tireless advocate for the young professional and embodies the spirit of the Urban League Movement. Although Lavern is beginning a new adventure, she says, “Once an Urban Leaguer, always an Urban Leaguer.” We are following that idea, with the Century Class of the YPN Leadership Council. This inaugural group of past YPN executive board members advises and influences the strategic direction of YPN. Their continued involvement will help maintain our programmatic excellence and strengthen the values of YPN.
Executive Board Pamela E. Perkins President Gerald S. Padmore Vice President Keith McKenna Treasurer Pia Hill Secretary Benjamin E. Terry Director of Fund Development Courtney McSwain Director of Communications Pete Gore Director of Membership Tiffany Young Director of Social Programs Natasha Smith Director of Professional and Personal Development Nicole Battle Director of Community Service Ndidi Mojay Director of Political Engagement Robert Seabrooks Policies and Procedures Chair Wallace Gooden Historian Chasiti Dawson Executive Committee Advisor Lavern J. Chatman-Brown President and CEO Northern Virginia Urban League
As I say farewell as YPN’s president, I am excited about the new chapter that will begin. I know YPN will continue to move forward towards brilliance under the direction of the incoming president, Gerald S. Padmore. And I look forward to continuing to see how the Urban League Movement in Northern Virginia will continue to impact lives, as it has mine.
Yours in the Movement,
iamempowered.com facebook.com/nvulypn Email general questions to
Pamela E. Perkins
Changing of the Guard A New YPN Board Readies to Take the Lead by Garrett James
“YPN is known as a group that gets things done. We have to take the seeds that have been planted and help them grow together.” These were the sentiments of Gerald S. Padmore as he appealed for votes during the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) election night, held on April 14, 2011. Padmore, who was elected to be YPN’s new president for the 2011-2012 fiscal year, said he will focus on continuing YPN’s history of being an effective community change-maker and furthering the National Urban League’s Five-Point Empowerment agenda. Specifically, Padmore shared that he wanted to expand YPN’s outreach to the more western and southern areas of Northern Virginia and increase YPN’s corporate sponsorships. YPN’s new Executive Board will take office on July 1. Some of the goals of the newly-elected board include: “Continuing to promote YPN and its unique services through new media” —Tonya Williams, Director of Communications “Increasing our yearly community service hours from 1,000 to 1,500 and building more strategic partnerships with other organizations” —Nicole Battle, Director of Community Service
YPN 2011-2012 Executive Board President – Gerald S. Padmore Vice President – Courtney McSwain Treasurer – Mia Barnes Secretary – Amanda Moore Director of Professional & Personal Development – Natasha Smith
“Increasing YPN’s visibility with potential sponsors” — Ryan Love, Director of Fund Development
Director of Communications – Tonya Williams
“Equipping YPN members with the knowledge to spread YPN’s message to new members” — Kristen Herring, Director of Membership
Director of Fund Development – Ryan Love
“Creating opportunities for professional and personal development for the community” — Natasha Smith, Director of Professional & Personal Development
Parliamentarian – Benjamin E. Terry
“Increasing YPN members’ voices concerning the type and quality of social programs offered” — Tiffany Young, Director of Social Programs Looking toward the new fiscal year, Padmore says the executive board-elect has already been hard at work on the transition. “This is a new guard within YPN and we are going to have a great year. I can feel it,” says Padmore.
Director of Community Service – Nicole Battle Director of Membership – Kristen Herring Director of Social Programs – Tiffany M. Young Historians – Marcel Lewis & Elijah Gelzer Executive Committee Advisor – Pamela E. Perkins
College Survival 101 Preparing Tomorrow’s Leaders Today by Jewell Jones
On April 2, the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) held its 7th Annual College Survival (CS) 101 at the Ballston Center of Marymount University in Arlington. CS 101 is one of YPN’s signature youth development programs that helps educate minority high school students on the realities of college life. The theme of this year’s CS 101 was “Preparing Tomorrow’s Leaders Today” and YPN brought together guest speakers to drive home the importance of young people being prepared to be leaders through education and positive personal development. According to Volita Russell, chair of CS 101, focusing on leadership was important to this year’s organizers to let area youth know that they are capable of reaching high levels of achievement. “It is important for us to believe that they [CS101 student attendees] can be leaders,” said Russell. “We have to prepare them by being an example.” Further driving home the point was Pamela Perkins, president of YPN, who told the more than 40 students from the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area attending CS 101, “…being here today means you’re taking the right step to being a leader.” Although Perkins was addressing the attendees, her comment mirrored CS101’s impact on YPN members who annually plan the event. CS 101 is YPN’s oldest signature program and the only one with its own executive committee—an example of the leadership that the program is intended to promote. Courtney McSwain, who will enter her third year on YPN’s executive board in July, began her leadership within the organization on the CS 101 executive committee. “Serving on the executive committee showed me just how serious YPN was about service and the level of excellence that we aspire to. Organizers of this event work through the night and on weekends to make sure everything goes smoothly.
But it takes that kind of dedication to make sure that our young people have the right tools for success.” Peter Gore, YPN’s 2010-2011 director of membership and one of fifteen volunteers helping with the day’s event, expressed similar sentiments about the dedication of YPN members. “It is good to see folks being able to give back in a capacity to fulfill a common goal,” Gore said. That goal, helping students become empowered through education, is a key pillar of the Urban League’s work in Northern Virginia and throughout the country. “Most people don’t have the right tools,” said CS 101 co-chair, Tyra Beamon. “If you give them the right tools…you’re pretty much [putting them] on the same playing field.” Organizers planned workshops to give students a taste of the academic, social and financial aspects of college, and a special workshop was held for parents to discuss their fears and anxieties related to the college transition. “Parents were engaged [and] concerned [about their children going to college],” said Leroy Nesbitt, one of the facilitators of the parent workshop. “I wish this could be a series.” The program ended with a college fair, where representatives from nearly a dozen universities spoke to students and parents about college admissions. One lucky student took home a $500 book scholarship for college. Ultimately, CS 101 attendees and their parents walked away with important words of encouragement for not just college survival, but college success. “This [going to college] is going to be an opportunity to redefine yourself,” said Mazi Mutafa of Words Beats & Life, a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming lives through hip-hop culture. And Mahogany Woodland, the lunch keynote speaker and author of Freshmen Honeys, told the crowd, “You have to take responsibility for your destiny.”
ON THE COVER
Developing Influential Leaders YPN Members Gain Hands-On Leadership Training by Arika Lawrence It goes without saying that leaders must be able to command authority. However, to be a successful leader of today, influence is, in many ways, more important that authoritative command. What’s more, the ability to identify talent and cultivate excellence in others is often the true hallmark of a leader. Members of the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network “A key component of being a (YPN), which was founded to identify new leaders to carry out the Urban League leader is helping others recogmission toward social and economic empowerment, say that the organization is nize their potential while also diligent about nurturing new leaders and preparing them to become agents of challenging and supporting change in the community, workplaces and beyond. “A key component of being a them so that they can give the leader is helping others recognize their potential while also challenging and supbest of themselves” porting them so that they can give the best of themselves,” says Amanda Moore, –Amanda Moore co-chair of Opportunity to Thrive, YPN’s signature youth development and academic enrichment program. “YPN helps you create and refine your vision while collaborating with other members; together, we draw on everyone’s strength to implement the vision,” says Moore. The vision that Moore speaks of has community service at its core. From being mentors to young children at the Patrick Henry Family Shelter to refurbishing homes in local neighborhoods, YPN members demonstrate their commitment to leadership through direct acts of service, and they do so in a way that values solving problems from the ground up. As an auxiliary organization of the Northern Virginia Urban League, YPN helps its affiliate serve community members directly in their homes, schools and neighborhoods. “The Urban League movement is grounded in direct services,” says Pamela Perkins, YPN’s current president who finishes her term in June of this year. “Our affiliate provides direct employment, housing, health and youth development services to the community, and we support that mission through our youth development and mentoring programs.” Indeed, it is the opportunity to develop programs that address issues of importance to its members that makes YPN so appealing to many emerging leaders. “YPN prepares its members for leadership by giving them the opportunity to use or to develop skills directly through programming,” says YPN member Marcel Lewis, who sat on the planning committee for College Survival 101, YPN’s annual day-long college preparation workshop that took place in April. “With multiple committees, each member gets the chance to use their [leadership] strengths,” Lewis adds. By organizing community service projects, YPN members learn while doing— simultaneously receiving and practicing essential program management and team building skills. Moreover, the work provides a direct benefit in the neighborhoods where YPN members live. By empowering members to make decisions and drive programming themselves, YPN has positioned itself to be a premier source of education and training for African-American young professionals seeking to take on instrumental leadership roles locally, nationally and even globally. “As an organization, YPN is at its best when we are leading, educating and supporting young professionals to empower others,” says Gerald S. Padmore, the newly elected president for YPN’s 2011-2012 fiscal year. “That’s what we’ve done for the past 11 years, and that’s what we will continue to do.” Garrett James and Courtney McSwain also contributed to this article.
Celebrating the Next Generation of Leaders by Jewell Jones
Black Opal is the premier annual gala sponsored by the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) and after four months and 100 plus hours of planning, Tiffany Young, director of social programs, had to make sure it was something to talk about. “Black Opal gives people an opportunity to see young professionals doing great things,” said Young during the event. “We want people to see the hard work we put into showcasing YPN.” Held on Saturday, March 26 at the George Washington Masonic Memorial in Old Town Alexandria, Black Opal was attended by over 200 guests who enjoyed heavy hors d’oeuvres, complimentary drinks and DJ-spun music that didn’t stop until 2 am. “I fell asleep on my couch after the event,” said Young days after Black Opal. “[but] it was a success – well worth it in the end.” This was YPN’s second time hosting Black Opal, and funds raised through the event support the community empowerment programs of YPN, including education scholarships and other community service initiatives. “That is the best part about it,” says Benjamin Terry, YPN’s director of fund development. “It was all for a good cause. All the funds raised are going to our community.” Black Opal also served as an opportunity to celebrate leaders who have not only been of great service to Northern Virginia but have also shown innovation in social change and entrepreneurship. Dr. Nia Malika Perkins, DVM, co-owner of Paws, Purrs & Exotics Animal Hospital and Erick King, co-founder and executive director of Capital Youth Empowerment Program, Inc., received plaques for their entrepreneurship and community service, respectively. “She [Perkins] owns the first black-owned veterinary hospital in Alexandria, and Eric has a great organization that is trying to help young kids,” says Gerald S. Padmore, president-elect of YPN. “The reason we recognized them is because they encompass what we [YPN] are doing.” Young added, “I think that by honoring these leaders, we are showing that we can be in control of our own destiny and careers.”
Photos by: Karima Evans Photography
YPN’s Book Club Promotes Healthy Dialogue by Garrett James Whether you are seeking intellectual stimulation, the liberty to be open and honest, friendship or new perspectives on every day life, “The Forum” the regular book club of the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN) has just what you’re looking for. Currently, The Forum meets bi-monthly, and organizers build each session around a topic that will resonate with the 21-40 year old demographic. There is often one feature book, but organizers may give readers a list of up to four books to choose from on a given topic. When participants come together, the conversation is informed by the reading and participant’s own personal experiences. “Our goal is to provide a more intimate gathering space for our members to get to know one another and make authentic connections,” says Courtney McSwain, one of the club’s organizers. “We want to encourage active reading amongst our peers and build a healthy dialogue.” Topics for each session range from leadership and career success to civic engagement and race. In March, The Forum took on love and relationships during one of its Friday night “Weekday Wind Down” sessions. Fifteen book club members came together to discuss The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman, which focuses on the different ways that people give and receive love in romantic, platonic and even familial relationships. Among the attendees were those who were both single and dating, but all walked away with a new way of looking at communicating with others.
“Looking back I really enjoyed it,” says Renette Noel, who attended the March session. Noel adds that since the March book club session, she has been looking at relationships differently. These days, she asks herself, “What can I do better for relationships or friendships?” She adds, “The discussion helped me grow as a person. I look forward to attending more in the future.” Guests who come to The Forum are often encouraged by the atmosphere, which allows attendees to voice their opinion in a non-intimidating environment. “One of the best ways to increase confidence and self-assuredness, and thereby feel empowered, is to express yourself and have others understand and respect your perspective,” says Audra Savage, one of the book club’s organizers who will begin serving as the new chair this summer. “The first YPN event I attended as a new member outside of the general body meeting was The Forum,” Savage says. “I was encouraged by such a positive experience of sharing my thoughts and impressions of a book through the shared lens of the African-American perspective.” Savage looks forward to growing The Forum for others looking to share this same experience. To join the discussion and to learn more about The Forum, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Make the Most of Networking by Jewell Jones
Armed with business cards and an elevator speech, members of the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professional Network and the Greater Washington Urban League Thursday Network made new connections as part of a speed networking brunch held at Brightwood Bistro in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, February 5, 2011.
While enjoying a southern brunch, more than 60 attendees listened as Jon Love, president of Pitney Bowes Government Solutions and keynote speaker for the sold-out event, gave practical advice on how to make the most of networking opportunities. “You’re the most connected group I’ve seen, but you don’t know how to use those connections,” said Love. “I have never gotten a job without knowing somebody.” Put these tips from Jon Love to the test when looking to make meaningful networking connections.
n In some cases, a degree from a good school won’t get you there. “I’m not looking at aptitude, I’m looking at attitude.”
n It’s okay to be something different.
“Step out of that box and don’t be afraid.”
n Don’t worry about the obstacles of getting there. Focus on the finish line.
“Shake it off and keep it rolling. You’re not looking for a job, the job will find you.”
n Pay your dues to make it to the top.
“You don’t start here,” says Love, who at the age of 15, had a job pumping gas.
n You never know what’s going to happen.
“You’ve got to be prepared. Show up and be at the right place and the right time – and ready.”
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT Brandon McCollough Answers Call to Action “Few organizations successfully recapture that passion and purpose we once had of contributing to and bettering our community the way that YPN does…I have found YPN to not only be about giving back, but also developing yourself to the point that you will be able to give back your best.”
Candace Simon Displays Passion for Education “YPN has given me the opportunity to display my passion for education and enrich the lives of disadvantaged youth…[YPN’s] Empowering Youth Program does not only empower the kids, but it empowers me every month in many ways and I am thankful for the opportunity to share my talents with YPN.” Movement 9
Five Tips to Reach Work-Life Balance by Jewell Jones
“Relationships are the foundation of everything. They really are the fiber that holds our lives together,” says Aiyana Ma’at, one half of B Intentional, a firm dedicated to helping people improve their relationships and reach their personal and professional goals. Aiyana, along with her husband and business partner Ayize, discussed the importance of balancing work with personal development and relationships in February, during the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network’s monthly Professional Speakers Series.
These tips from the The Ma’ats may help you gain more balance to build healthy relationships in your life.
1 2 3 4 5
Get rid of the over commitment issues.
“Examine your life regularly,” says Aiyana. “You need to drop activities that sap all your time.”
Don’t set the bar too high.
“Be aware of your expectations,” says Ayize. “You need to make sure your expectations are reasonable.”
If you build it, they will come.
“Pay attention to yourself,” says Aiyana. “Date yourself. Exercise.”
Make time for your relationships.
“You have to schedule it in,” says Aiyana, who recommends making a minimum of three personal connections a week and scheduling them at least two weeks in advance.
Be open to the possibilities.
“It’s a challenge to be intimate with other people,” says Ayize. “You have to put your guard down.”
Community Service and Leadership by Nicole Battle
Community service is the backbone of the Northern Virginia Urban League Young Professionals Network (YPN). We are here to empower the community and there is a need for more YPN members who are willing to give ideas and contribute to the planning of upcoming community service projects. Many people are afraid to commit to taking on leadership roles within the community service committee, fearing that it will take too much time or that they will not be successful. We have a committee dedicated to helping you develop a project so that you will not have to do it alone. This leadership experience will help prepare you for greater roles and responsibilities within YPN, your profession and other organizations. Moreover, we give you an opportunity to advocate for the issues that you care about. YPN has personally transformed me in many ways and has always supported me through my personal and professional growth. This same network of support is what we extend to members today. We recently saw a huge increase in participation of our black male members when we began our work with the Northern Virginia Urban League Guild’s Grandfathers Group Mentoring program. We noticed our black men were greatly outnumbered in attendance of our programs, and we wanted this to change. It would not have happened unless our members spoke up and we were open to change. Our committee strives to continue improving on our current programs while also starting new partnerships and initiatives; we will need the members’ help in order to accomplish this. I encourage members to challenge themselves and continue developing themselves as leaders by joining the Community Service committee. Find out what service initiatives touch your heart and let us know; help us help you. This program is the center of my heart, and it has improved my leadership skills as well as my life. This is our YPN, and it’s up to each of us to own that.
Ready to Lead? JOIN A YPN COMMITTEE n Communications – “Telling YPN’s empowerment story.” Email: email@example.com n Community Service – “Engaging young professionals in selfless service.” Email: firstname.lastname@example.org n Fund Development – “Every good organization needs a great friend.” Email: email@example.com n Membership – “Impact your community today.” Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
n Political Engagement – “Keeping you informed about the issues that matter.” Email: politicalengagement@ nvulypn.org n Professional and Personal Development – “Excellence creates opportunities.” Email: email@example.com n Social Programs – “Show up to have fun and leave with an experience.” Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
n Photography and Videography – “Capture the moment at all times.” Email: email@example.com
AFFILIATE MOVEMENT Northern Virginia Urban League Awards $75,000 in Scholarships to Area’s Top High School Achievers by Courtney McSwain
Over 700 guests gathered at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner on Friday, April 1, 2011 to attend the 21st Annual Community Service and Scholarship Awards Dinner hosted by the Northern Virginia Urban League (NOVAUL). The 21-year old civil rights organization awarded 15 area high school seniors each with $5,000 scholarships to attend the college of their choice. Scholarships recipients also received a complimentary round-trip flight from Southwest Airlines as a part of their award. Scholarship recipients represent the top-achieving students of color in Northern Virginia. In keeping with its theme “Preparing the Next Generation for a Global Economy,” NOVAUL also presented awards to four of the nation’s top leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields: Virginia Department of Veterans Affairs researcher and Howard University School of Medicine Adjunct Professor Dr. Tshaka Cunningham, future neurosurgeon Tony Hansberry, NASA Astronaut Stephanie D. Wilson and NASA Associate Administrator for Education Programs Leland Melvin. Melvin also delivered the keynote address on why STEM education is a national imperative. NBC4 News Meteorologist Veronica Johnson was the evening’s host and was also honored for her achievements in meteorology and broadcasting. “We honored some of the world’s most prolific science and technology achievers not only to recognize their accomplishments, but to show our youth that it is possible to achieve extraordinary greatness in these areas,” says Lavern J. Chatman-Brown, of the importance of honoring STEM leaders. Steve Baker, vice president of business administration at the Washington Metropolitan Airport Authority, and Angela Moody, president and CEO of EDJ Associates, co-chairs for 21st Annual Community Service and Scholarship Awards Dinner, were both particularly excited about the impact that hearing from honoree Tony Hansberry had on the student scholars. “I think seeing one of their peers achieve such greatness at it did wonders to show the scholars how far they can go in the STEM world,” says Baker. “And they don’t have to wait until they’ve finished college or received a Ph.D.,” Moody adds. “They can begin innovating right now.”
Photos by: Solid Image - Ron Baker
The evening also featured special tributes to Chatman-Brown, who will retire as NOVAUL’s CEO this September. Marc H. Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, U.S. Representative Jim Moran (VA-8) and U.S. Senator Mark Warner from Virginia made remarks from the stage, praising Chatman-Brown for her leadership and uncanny ability to garner corporate funds even during the toughest of economic times. In a rare surprise for Chatman-Brown, Kenneth Bynum, NOVAUL’s chairman, presented a special video tribute to the retiring CEO. “It is difficult to surprise me,” said Chatman-Brown as she gave the evening’s closing remarks. “But let me finish the program so that we can stay on time,” she said, as she brought the dinner to a close for her last time.
Young Professional Network Summer magazine issue