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E N T E R TA I N S ,




Volume 9 – Number 28 JULY/AUGUST 2017






contents 8 Discover Your Roots at the Library 10 A Blueprint for Success 15 Town’s History Highlights Courage, Dignity 16 Things to Consider Before Adoption 18 Top Four Myths About Black Marriage 20 On the Quad 23 Four Ways to Boost Kids’ Self Esteem 24 Planning a Healthy Family Reunion 26 Supporting Medical Research 29 Visit Pensacola 30 Florida Scope 33 Luncheon Raises Funds for Health Equity 34 ONYX Salutes Lillian Seays 35 ONYX Salutes Mable Butler 36 LIFT Orlando Making Progress in West Lakes 38 Millennials May Be Financially Savvy 39 Critical Lessons for Aspiring Entrepreneurs 40 Talking With Your Child About Sex 42 People on the Move: Gary Hartfield 43 People on the Move: Ava Parker 44 Temporary Protected Status for Haitian Immigrants 46 Cool Summer Drink



Photo by Hannah Pietrick/UF



FROM THE PUBLISHER PUBLISHER/EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Richard E. ‘Rich’ Black EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Marianne Eggleston, M.B.A. MANAGING EDITOR D. Shenell Reed, M.B.A. ASSOCIATE EDITORS Dr. Phyllis Davis Laura Dorsey Gayle Andrews Sharon Fletcher Jones



JULY/AUGUST 2017 Few experiences in life are filled with such intrinsic memories as those we share with family. We sit at the knee of elders who inspire our family traditions; we gather information to wrap around the family tree; we engage in important conversations that shape us into the men and women we become. Those cherished life moments get passed down through the generations never to be forgotten. In this issue of ONYX, we learn how to build a pathway to our roots. Genealogy is gaining in popularity as families yearn to uncover answers about their past. We make good health a family issue as well as provide critical advice and education to help our children make the right choices. Our cover story centers on a man who has made education and encouraging others his life’s work. Chimay Anumba, Ph.D., is the dean of the University of Florida’s College of Design, Construction and Planning. He is equipping his students with the best tools to become the next generation of leading architectural engineers. We were excited to sit down with him for a one on-one conversation. We also acknowledge the legacy of ONYX Magazine’s co-founder, Mrs. Lillian Seays. The Orange County Public School District and the City of Orlando recognized her dedication to education, and the Memorial Middle School Media Center was named in her honor. Finally, I would like to thank the outgoing chair of ONYX Magazine’s Advisory Committee, Michelle Tatom, for her years of dedication and leadership which caused the publication to take a quantum leap. We are excited to welcome Deidre Parker, our incoming chair, as we move toward our growth and future endeavors. As always, we remain committed to our readers to entertain, inspire and inform. Enjoy.



SOCIAL MEDIA Damonic Robertson PHOTOGRAPHY DIRECTOR Brandi Jordan BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR Matt deJager CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Kelly King Alexander Sharon Fletcher Jones Ronnie Blair Steven King Marianne Eggleston Nadra Kareem Nittle Ricki Fairley D. Shenell Reed Allison Ryall

Nancy Port Schwalb Sharon Thayer Elizabeth Thompson Roniece Weaver Kris Woodson

CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Brent Ferraro Hannah Pietrick Ted Hollins Andrew Wardlow Travis Hull Kerrick Williams Photography Billy Jones MIND BLOWING MOBILE APPS Wanda Trotter ONYX ADVISORY COMMITTEE Deidre Parker, Chair Michelle Tatom, Immediate Past Chair Bob Berryhill Dr. Lavon Bracy Bryon Brooks Hon. Mable Butler Dr. Cynthia Chestnut James Clark John Crossman

Barbara Hartley Tony Hill Alma Horne Rodney Hurst Ann Jenkins Larry Lee, Jr. Zita Steglich-Ross

Nancy Port Schwalb Margaret J Thompson Gail Thomas-DeWitt Hon. Alan Williams Carla Williams Dr. Samuel Wright Lady Dhyana Ziegler


Lester and Lillian Seays ONYX is published by RBlack and Associates, LLC, Address: P.O. Box 555672, Orlando, Florida 32855-5872 Phone: (407) 451-2891, or Office: 321-418-7216. Subscription rate is $19.95 for six issues. For subscriptions and notification of address change, contact ONYX Magazine at the above address or e-mail us at info@ Letters to the editor are encouraged. Copyright 2015 by ONYX Magazine. All rights reserved. No part of the publication may be reproduced without written consent of the publisher. Opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the writer or interviewee and not necessarily those of the publisher. Manuscripts, photos and art should be submitted with a selfaddressed stamped envelope. The publisher does not assume responsibility for any materials not submitted in the manner advised. Unsolicited materials are not subject to review or payment from ONYX Magazine.




BLUEPRINT FOR SUCCESS By Nancy Port Schwalb All outside photos of Dean Chimay Anumba are taken at the Architecture Building on the University of Florida campus in Gainesville, Florida.


Photo by Hannah Pietrick/UF


photo by Brent Ferraro/UF College of Design, Construction and Planning

Dean Chimay Anumba presents at the annual UF College of Design, Construction and Planning faculty retreat.

Chimay Anumba, Ph.D., inspires more than designs that dictate important structures around the world. With his collaborative teaching style and dedication to his field, he is positioning students at the University of Florida’s (UF) College of Design, Construction and Planning to become the next generation of leading designers, construction managers and planners. The dean of the College, Anumba has been praised by colleagues for his international accolades, keen leadership and incomparable expertise. His career spans more than 30 years, starting when he was just a young man at the University of Jos in Nigeria. At 18 he graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Building and worked as a project engineer and design engineer before studying for his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at the University of Leeds, U.K. He was the founding Director of the Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Engineering and full professor in the Department of Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, U.K. Before joining the faculty at UF, Anumba was Professor and Head of the Department of Architectural Engineering at the Pennsylvania State University. ONYX Magazine met with Dean Anumba for an exclusive look at his blueprint for success.

How do you think your position as dean will impact African Americans and those of the African diaspora in Florida and the USA as relates to education opportunities at University of Florida? It is my hope that I can be a role model for young African Americans aspiring to careers in design, construction, planning and related aspects of the built environment. I would like them to see the University of Florida as their destination of choice for undergraduate and graduate studies. I would also like to see greater engagement between the college and business leaders regarding how we can work together to improve the quality of the built environment and ensure its longterm sustainability. When did you first become interested in construction, architecture and design? I have always been interested in buildings from grade school, and have marveled at what went into the design and construction of many iconic buildings all over the world. You’ve lived and worked in a number of places internationally. What common threads have you seen/experienced in terms of design, construction, architecture, and engineering? Continued on Page 12


Dean Chimay Anumba and doctoral students Sangyun Shin and Muhammed Abdullahi review architectural exhibits in the DCP gallery.

Continued from page 11

facilities and plan construction operations well before anything is done on the construction site. I did not envision that as an undergraduate student. What do you think is most important to know/consider for a student who would like to be accepted to the College of Design, Construction & Planning? The most important thing for prospective students is to understand that the college has top quality programs delivered by high caliber faculty who are focused on student success. We pride ourselves on equipping students to be successful in their future careers, with many programs that consistently deliver 100 percent job placement rate for graduating seniors. Dean Chimay Anumba discusses future college projects with students Shirley Morque and Jarrell Smith.

What are some key initiatives you’re spearheading at the College of Design, Construction & Planning?

My main focus is on enhancing the quality of the student learning experience, significantly increasing research productivity, providing state-of-the-art facilities, strengthening links with alumni and industry, and contributing to the socio-economic well-being of the state of Florida. Of what accomplishment are you most proud? I love seeing our students become successful professionals. What is the greatest challenge in your role as Dean of the College of Design, Construction & Planning at UF? The greatest challenge is moving the college forward such that it is recognized nationally and beyond as a preeminent College of Design, Construction and Planning. When you’re not working, what might someone find you doing? Spending time with my family, playing tennis or watching soccer/football. Did you bring any family with you to Florida? If so, tell me a little more about them. Yes, my wife, Claire, and our three daughters are here with me. They love being in Gainesville and my kids love the proximity to Disney! Read more about Dean Anumba at

Nancy Port Schwalb is the president at Schwalb Public Relations.


Photos by Hannah Pietrick

One of the most common threads relates to the importance of ensuring that the facility being designed is a good fit for the surroundings in terms of aesthetics, functionality, socio-economic considerations, environmental impact, and cultural sensitivity. You recently left your post at Penn State to join the University of Florida. What attracted you to UF? The University of Florida shares many attributes I liked at Penn State, one of these is being a research-intensive land-grant public university. I spent a sabbatical year at UF about 10 years ago and was enamored with the beautiful environment and how welcoming people are here. There is also considerable potential to make a difference by maximizing the synergy between all the built environment disciplines within the college. In your years of experience, what have been the greatest changes within the industry? What are your students learning today that you never even dreamed possible when you were an undergraduate student? The biggest changes in the industry are associated with the rapid pace of technological advancement, the move toward more collaborative means of project procurement, the increasing focus on sustainability, and the demand for greater certainty of outcomes by owners/clients. Our students are now using virtual design and construction models to fully design


Town’s History Highlights Stories of Courage, Dignity Newtown Alive Staff Report

Glossie Atkins

Photos courtesy of


lossie Atkins laughs easily and sometimes uncontrollably at the thought of fun times in Overtown. The daughter of Jay and Nettie Campbell was born in Ocala on December 3, 1917. With her sister Ruby Horton as the leader, she left Central Florida to work on a farm in Sarasota picking beans and tomatoes. “We filled a bushel basket of beans for two dollars each,” she recalls. The unrelenting heat and worms on the plants forced a transition from fieldwork to housework. Horton then operated a café. “We had a good time,” Atkins said, bursting into laughter without offering too many details. Her stories and scores of others have been preserved through an award-winning history project, Newtown Alive, which celebrates the cultural heritage of Overtown and Newtown, two of Sarasota’s oldest communities. Her son Fredd Atkins was a Sarasota City Commissioner when he held discussions with the community about documenting the history of Sarasota’s African-American community in 1985. “The community will not only learn about their history, they’ll also learn to respect the struggle of the early pioneers,” said Atkins. Since 2015, a research team joined volunteers to search libraries, databases, cul-

tural centers, and personal collections for information about the 100-year history of Overtown and Newtown. Primary and secondary source documents combined with accounts from oral history interviews are included on 15 historic markers throughout the community. The historic markers describe why African Americans came to Sarasota, their work life, education focus, social and religious traditions. The information the team dug up also can be found in the research report, training materials for trolley tours, on, and in a book. An app will soon be in production. “I believe the Sarasota community will be as proud as I am of leaders and ordinary citizens who did the hard work and sacrificed their lives for freedom. We are enjoying the benefits of their labor today,” said Vickie Oldham, consultant of the Newtown Conservation Historic District project. Each 40 inches high X 30 inches wide, double-sided marker describes significant events and people who shaped the Overtown and Newtown communities. The fiberglass panels are installed on city owned and private properties, churches and a school. Oldham’s team consists of a cultural anthropologist, architectural historian, Greater Hurst Chapel AME Church

historical preservationist, photographer, finance officer and an appointed Newtown Citizens Task Force. In 2016, the NCHD team completed a 360-page research report, oral history interviews and an inventory of historic resources. In May, the NCHD team won statewide top honors, outstanding achievement, in the “Preservation Education/Media” category of the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation’s 2017 Preservation Awards, presented at the 39th annual Preservation Conference, Preservation Reinvented for Art and Enterprise. “I am told that this is the highest award that we could receive in the state for historic preservation, so I am ecstatic,” Oldham told the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. For more information about the Newtown Alive project, visit

Bethlehem Baptist Marker



Some Things to Consider Before Adopting a Child By Kelly King Alexander

offers unsecured loans and small grants to adoptive families (call 203-791-3811or go to 5. Research the law. If adopting domestically, research state laws. If adopting internationally, investigate the eligibility requirements of target countries and U.S. State Department regulations.

1. Learn all you can. Read books and magazines. Visit Websites. Talk to other parents. Meet with adoptive parents and their children. Join adoptive parent support groups. Make it known that you want to adopt so they will think of you if they hear of an available child. 2. Find professionals — agencies, attorneys and other adoption experts — in your area. Attend informational meetings held by public and private agencies. Ask for brochures and handouts. Talk with social workers, attorneys, facilitators, agency representatives.

Screen any agency or attorney you think you might use. Check references. 3. Do some soul searching. Decide whether you want an infant or older child, boy or girl, domestic or foreign-born child. Usually, more specific requests will take longer. Consider whether you would be open to twins or sibling groups or whether you can handle a special needs child. Think about whether you want an open relationship with the birth parents. Decide whether you want an independent nonagency adoption, a public agency adoption or a private agency adoption. 4. Come up with a financing plan. Determine the cost of the type of adoption you seek. Draw upon savings, grants, and loans from church groups, friends and family The National Adoption Foundation

7. Carefully consider any child you might adopt. Explore the child’s medical history and social and emotional background. Ask a pediatrician’s advice about what to expect. 8. Use post-adoption services. Once the adoption is complete, join an adoptive families support group. If the adoption is international or interracial, seek support groups for help with birth culture. If the child has special needs, seek supplemental medical or counseling services. Provided by Parents Magazine

For additional resources, visit 16 ONYX MAGAZINE

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Building a family is an exciting time. Whether you want to start your family or expand it through adoption, there are a few things you should consider before going forward.

6. Complete a home study. Gather multiple notarized copies of birth certificates, marriage licenses, medical exams, financial statements (including the last three years’ tax returns, photographs of you and your home, a written autobiography, employment records, criminal clearance documents, fingerprints, three letters of reference, a report on your home with deed, and (possibly) a psychological evaluation, and, in international adoptions, INS documents, passports, and copies of State Department laws in English and in the language of the country you have chosen to adopt from. Prepare for an interview by a social worker or agency.


The Top 4 Myths About Black Marriage Black women do get married and most black don’t marry interracially


o black people get married? That question has been asked in one form or another in a series of news reports about the black marriage “crisis.” On the surface, such stories seem to be concerned about black women in search of love, but these media reports have largely served to fuel stereotypes about African Americans. Moreover, by suggesting that too few black men are available to wed, news stories on black marriage have done little more than predict doom and gloom for African-American women who hope to marry. In reality, black marriage isn’t reserved for the likes of Barack and Michelle 18 ONYX MAGAZINE

Obama. Analysis of census data and other figures has debunked much of the misinformation floating around in the media about the black marriage rate. MYTH #1. BLACK WOMEN DON’T MARRY The barrage of news reports about the black marriage rate gives the impression that African-American women’s chances of walking down the aisle are bleak. A Yale University study found that just 42 percent of black women are married, and a variety of high profile news networks such as CNN and ABC picked that figure up

and ran with it. But researchers Ivory A. Toldson of Howard University and Bryant Marks of Morehouse College question the accuracy of this finding. “The often-cited figure of 42 percent of black women never marrying includes all black women 18 and older,” Toldson told the “Raising this age in an analysis eliminates age groups we don’t really expect to be married and gives a more accurate estimate of true marriage rates.” Toldson and Marks found that 75 percent of black women marry before they turn age 35 after examining census data from 2005 to 2009. Moreover, black

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by Nadra Kareem Nittle,

women in small towns have higher marriage rates than white women in urban centers such as New York and Los Angeles, Toldson remarked in the New York Times.

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MYTH #2. EDUCATED BLACK WOMEN HAVE IT HARDER Getting a college degree is the worst thing a black woman can do if she wants to get married, right? Not exactly. News stories about black marriage often mention that more black women pursue higher education than black men—by a 2-to-1 ratio, by some estimates. But what these pieces leave out is that white women also earn college degrees more than white men do, and this gender imbalance hasn’t hurt white women’s chances at matrimony. What’s more, black women who finish college actually improve their chances of marrying rather than lower them. “Among black women, 70 percent of college graduates are married by 40, whereas only about 60 percent of black high school graduates are married by that age,” Tara Parker-Pope of the New York Times reported. The same trend is at play for black men. In 2008, 76 percent of black men with a college degree married by age 40. In contrast, only 63 percent of black men with just a high school diploma tied the knot. So education increases the likelihood of marriage for both African-American men and women. Also, Toldson points out that black women with college degrees are more likely to marry than white women who are high school dropouts. MYTH #3. RICH BLACK MEN MARRY OUT Black men drop black women as soon as they reach a certain level of success, don’t they? While plenty of rap stars, athletes and musicians may choose to date or marry interracially when they achieve fame, the same is not true for the bulk of successful black men. By analyzing census data, Toldson and Marks found that 83 percent of married black men who earned at least $100,000 annually got hitched to black women. The same is the case for educated black men of all incomes. Eighty-five percent of black men who are college graduates mar-

For heterosexual black women in search of marriage, the forecast is not nearly as gloomy as has been portrayed in the media. ried black women. Generally, 88 percent of married black men (no matter their income or educational background) have black wives. This means that interracial marriage should not be held responsible for the singleness of black women. MYTH #4. BLACK MEN DON’T EARN AS MUCH AS BLACK WOMEN Just because black women are more likely to graduate from college than their male counterparts doesn’t mean that they outearn black men. Actually, black men are more likely than black women to bring home at least $75,000 annually. Plus, double the number of black men than women make at least

$250,000 annually. Because of pervasive gender gaps in income, black men remain the breadwinners in the African-American community. These numbers indicate that there are more than enough financially successful black men to go around for black women. Of course, not every black woman is looking for a breadwinner. Not every black woman is even seeking marriage. Some black women are happily single. Others are gay, lesbian or bisexual and were unable to legally wed those they love until 2015 when the Supreme Court overturned the ban on gay marriage. For heterosexual black women in search of marriage, however, the forecast is not nearly as gloomy as has been portrayed in the media. ONYX MAGAZINE 19


QUAD B-CU Office of Chaplaincy Travels to Ireland B-CU Department of Communications Bethune-Cookman University’s (B-CU) Reverend John Baldwin, Reverend Kenya Lovell, and Mr. Wallace Wyatt III set out on a journey to Northern Ireland to take part in the, “Rethinking Conflict Conference,” sponsored by the United Methodist Church General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. B-CU was one of three schools that took part in the conference, with eight students along for the experience. The group attended the conference to learn more about the political and religious struggle and violence over many decades between republicans and loyalists of the Protestant and Catholic church. “This travel seminar will embed you in an environment of conflict and conflict resolution, a setting that is actively involved in healing and creating new relationships between people, neighborhoods, and communities,” said Reverend Baldwin. The goal of the conference was for attendees to leave Northern Ireland with a strong sense of the difficulties that communities and individuals face in building peace in the midst of conflict as well as practical tools that will enhance the work to bring about positive change in conflicted situations.


FAMU DRS Pioneers Online Learning Program FAMU Dept. of Communications A new research project designed to develop online learning methods and technologies is under way at the Florida A& M University (FAMU) Developmental Research School (DRS) in a public-private partnership between the University’s Division of Research, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the University of Phoenix. The project is the first to apply online learning and teaching methods at a Historically Black College or University. DRS provided a guided tour of the laboratory where students showed state lawmakers, a host of elected officials and educators on how online learning works. For senior Aston Edmunds, taking his American government class online gives him an advantage. “I’m a visual learner. The different tutorials and the different notes that they teach us before we take the test online are very helpful,” Edmunds said. Because African American high school students struggle to meet ACT benchmarks, the alliance believes their online teaching strategies could be a remedy. College readiness requires a change to traditional teaching methods and the alliance believes the FAMU DRS program will help students meet those important goals, close academic gaps and improve the chances of an on-time college graduation. The unique collaborative effort developed a new “blended” learning education classroom to improve student learning, teacher resources and to ultimately project STEM content to low wealth communities around the state of Florida. The program comes at no cost to Florida taxpayers, according to FAMU Vice President of Research, Timothy E. Moore, Ph.D. Read the entire story at

St. Petersburg College Names First African-American and First Woman President During a special meeting in May, the Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College (SPC) selected Tonjua Williams, Ph.D., as the college’s next President. The board voted unanimously on the selection. Williams is currently the Sr. Vice President Student Services at St. Petersburg College, a capacity she has served in since 2013. Williams, SPC’s seventh president, will be the college’s first woman and first African-American to serve as president. “She didn’t have to sell me on SPC. I was more excited to be part of this institution after hearing her speak about it than I have been in maybe the past few years,” said Trustee Nathan Stonecipher. “She is passionate about St. Petersburg College. That bleeds out of her.” Williams, a 30-year veteran of SPC, previously served as Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs and Provost of the Tarpon Springs Campus. Williams earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Barry University, a master’s degree in Counselor Education from University of South Florida, and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Humanities from Clearwater Christian College.

EWC Offers Courses to High School Students EWC Dept. of Communications Edward Waters College (EWC) announced that it will accept high school students in its college-level criminal justice courses in the fall of 2017. About 45 students at Raines and Ribault High Schools in Jacksonville’s Northside signed up for a pilot class that was offered in the spring, showing promising potential for enrollment. The program includes four classes to introduce juniors and seniors at Raines and Ribault to the law, the courts and the juvenile justice system. Students also will take field trips to courtrooms, jails and attorney’s offices. “These courses are toward their degree in criminal justice, which we offer as a bachelor’s degree course on our college campus,” said Marvin Grant, the head of academic affairs at EWC. “So these students have an opportunity to take the beginning courses that will ultimately lead to a degree in criminal justice.”

FMU Murals Win Award South Florida Times staff report Truth Initiative® and the CVS Health Foundation joined students and faculty at Florida Memorial University (FMU) in the spring to unveil a new tobacco-free campus mural. FMU was one of five schools to win a tobacco-free mural contest sponsored by the youth smoking prevention campaign and the Foundation. Some faculty, staff and students drafted a tobacco-free policy recommendation to present to administration. “With 99 percent of smokers starting before age 27, college campuses are critical to preventing young adults from starting tobacco use, aiding current smokers in quitting and reducing exposure to secondhand smoke for all,” said Robin Koval, CEO and President of Truth Initiative, the national public health organization that directs and funds the ‘truth’ campaign. According to Truth, tobacco is not an equal opportunity killer. Tobacco-free campuses are especially important because African-Americans, low-income neighborhoods, LGBTQ communities and those with mental illness have been profiled by the tobacco industry for decades. Therefore, Truth and CVS Health Foundation partnered with students and administrators at FMU and more than 100 other Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), as well as community colleges across the country, to support their efforts to adopt 100 percent smoke- or tobacco-free policies. By speaking, seeking and spreading the truth about tobacco, Truth said it has helped bring teen cigarette use to a record low of 6 percent.



Ways To Boost Kids’ Self-Esteem By Sharon Thayer

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or the first two quarters of the school year, Olivia’s grades were perfect, all A’s on the report card of the second grader. Olivia was involved in the school holiday play, she was in the inventor’s club, she got along with everyone, and always looked forward to going to school. Something changed once school started again after winter break. Olivia began to withdraw from her friends, she was making up illnesses to stay home and when she was at school, her grades were slipping. After some prying, Olivia’s parents found the root of her problem: A new teacher was teaching her class after her original teacher took maternity leave. With the new instructor came a stricter environment, one that didn’t allow for students to voice their opinions or explore creative options in the classroom. One that didn’t show mutual honor and respect but strict discipline and negative reinforcement without freedom of expression. “Children need consistent guidance to build positive self-esteem. Knowing a few key strategies will help build solid foundations for children,” says Sharon Thayer, children’s advocate and author of the children’s book “If You Tell Me, I Can Fly” ( “Verbally shooting a kid down can have a negative influence on his or her life, the same way showing respect and affirming a child’s positive behavior can have a positive effect.” Once parents know it doesn’t take much effort and just takes consistent interaction and feedback over the course of time, one of the top gifts they can give is a positive sense of self. Building self-esteem is an on-going process that is not hard, but has to be consistent. Here are some ways to achieve that:

1. Encourage kids to try something new. Art, music, sports, dance, summer camp, science clubs – a little time away from the electronics. Try to direct them toward some things where you know their success will come easily, but also let them choose options that will be challenging. It’s difficult to predict how new adventures will turn out. Some will fizzle unexpectedly and what may appear to be a dead end could be the beginning of endless passion toward an activity. 2. Acknowledge and compliment your children. When you notice moments of creativity, talent and genius, celebrate those milestones, accomplishments and improvements, but also acknowledge failures and attempts that don’t go well. Help them learn from their failures and see they are simply stepping stones on the path to success. The freedom to fail is vital to success. 3. Honor and respect children’s ideas, knowledge and opinions. Kids today have more knowledge in some areas than many of adults (i.e. electronics). That’s great. Sit back and let them be your teacher as you honor this reversal of roles. Include them in family decision-making processes and responsibilities – with power comes responsibility is a valuable lesson. 4. Tell your children you believe in them and their dreams. Show your love every day; the successful, the average and the days of frustrations and failure. Regardless of their direction, accomplishments or disappointments, let your children see you are always there to help guide them through the maze to reach the goals they have chosen. ONYX MAGAZINE 23


Planning a Healthy Family Reunion By Roniece Weaver MS RD LD

Plan a Healthy Menu Assign this task to a family member who will have a conscious effort to provide healthy options for your family members. The right person on your team can make this project a huge success and create teachable moments at simple events. The wrong person can make your reunion become a greasy disaster. Now, don’t get it twisted, I enjoy good food, but it doesn’t have to swim in grease and drown in salt! Begin by serving food that is low in calories, sugar, salt, fat, and alcohol. Include a variety of fruits and vegetables, which provide essential vitamins and minerals, fiber, and other substances that are important for good health, and also may reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases. 24 ONYX MAGAZINE

Rethink Your Drink Many people don’t realize how many calories beverages can contribute to their daily intake. There are plenty of options for reducing the number of calories in what you drink and in making smart beverage choices. For instance, choose water.

Prepare Food Safely For more information on the basics of handling food safely, visit Foodborne illness, sometimes called food poisoning, is caused by consuming contaminated foods or beverages. To help protect yourself and loved ones from foodborne bacteria, follow the recipe for food safety with these guidelines:

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amily reunions are a great time to see relatives, celebrate your heritage, catch up on news, and create memories. Take steps to make sure your family get-together is safe and healthy.

TIPS I love sharing recipes, because they are tied to family stories and events. Some of our recipes have meaning and strong ties to events that create bonds, mend souls and keep us together through the years. If you have a stack of recipes consider this: Create a family recipe book to hand out at the reunion. You can accommodate the dietary needs of relatives with high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, or other conditions. Keep recipes healthy by offering options that are low in calories, sugar, salt, fat, and alcohol. Find helpful meal planning hints to enjoy your favorite foods with healthier ingredients. Learn ideas for nutritious snacks.

• • • •

Clean — Wash hands and surfaces often. Separate — Don’t cross-contaminate. Cook — Cook to the right temperature. Chill — Refrigerate promptly.

vaccinations required for that area. Check out travel notices designed to inform travelers about current health issues related to specific destinations.

Let’s Move! Some reunions may include walking, hiking, dancing, swimming, tennis, bowling, a scavenger hunt or other activities. They all have one thing in common, it’s movement! You can socialize and stay fit at the same time. Pick fun physical activities to do together, and enjoy the health benefits!

Be Safe Take precautions to make sure that family and friends are safe while visiting and playing. Prevent injuries from falls, drowning, sports activities, and more.

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Share Your Family Health History A family reunion is a good time to share family history--people, events, places, and dates. Why not share your family health history, too? It is extremely important for us to understand what was the cause of the illness and even the death of a family member. The information that you gather can assist in planning a strategy to prevent family from living the same cycle of disease especially if there are some hereditary traits associated with the disease. Travel Smart Whether you’re traveling down the street, across the country, or overseas, be prepared. Don’t drink and drive, and don’t let someone else drink and drive. Always wear a seat belt while riding in a motor vehicle. Always buckle your children in the car using a child safety seat, booster seat, or seat belt, depending on their age and size. If you’re taking a cruise, know your ship’s recent inspection scores. If you’re traveling internationally, make sure you have all the

Go Green Be conscious of the environment — and help sustain it for future generations! Whenever possible, recycle items from your reunion, such as aluminum, glass, plastic, or paper. Use less and therefore throw away less. Reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change.

Enjoy one of my favorite recipes for your next family reunion picnics! Have a Healthy and Safe Family Reunion! Its not about eating good, but it’s about eating well. Roniece Carrot Salad Servings 6 2/3 cup Plain low fat plain fat free yogurt ½ cup Low fat mayonnaise 1/8 tsp Salt 1/8 tsp Ground nutmeg ¾ oz Apple cider vinegar ¼ cup Honey 1 cup Fresh carrots, shredded 1 cup Canned pineapple tidbits in juice, drained 1 cup Fresh green apples, cored, diced, unpeeled 1/3 cup Golden raisins ¼ cup Shredded coconut Directions: 1. Combine yogurt, mayonnaise, salt, nutmeg, vinegar in a small bowl. Stir well. Set aside for step 2. Combine carrots, pineapple tidbits, apples and raisins in a large bowl. Toss lightly. Set aside for step 3. 3. Pour dressing over vegetable mixture. Stir well. 4. Transfer carrot-raisin salad to a bowl. Garnish with coconut. Cover and refrigerate to 40 F degrees or lower within 4 hours. Hold at 40 F or below. Portion ½ cup per serving. Preparation Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 7-8 minutes Makes: Six- ½ cup servings





Most drugs and treatments for diseases are developed and designed for middle-aged white men. Though we are over-represented in diseases, African Americans are significantly underrepresented in medical research. According to the Food and Drug Administration, while African-Americans represent 12 percent of the total U.S. population, they comprise just 5 percent of clinical trial participants. Despite a Congressional mandate that research financed by the National Institutes of Health include minorities, people of color comprise less than 5 percent

Now, consider these facts: 1. Because African Americans don’t participate in clinical trials, the data is limited on how Blacks respond to various treatments. When African Americans take part in clinical trials, they help improve the health of all people and provide a greater

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istorically African Americans have had a mistrust of doctors and the medical community. And consequently, we participate in clinical trials at much lower rates than other ethnic groups. So what does that mean for us? As long as we do this, we will remain the least healthy ethnic group in the United States. We will continue to be more likely to suffer from obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, asthma and HIV/AIDS. And we will continue to be less likely to survive prostate cancer, breast cancer, and lung cancer.

of participants in National Institutes of Health (NIH)-supported studies. So what’s the problem? We know about the Tuskegee Syphilis experiment where Black men were given misinformation and lied to by the U.S. Public Health Service in return for free medical care. And, you may have read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, where a young Black woman’s cells were cultivated for research without her knowledge and consent, and serve as the foundation for most of the world’s cancer research. Then there’s also the fear that you could get the placebo drug and actually sacrifice your treatment. We understand that there are some valid reasons to be concerned about medical science but allow us to add some perspective. First, let’s accurately define what clinical trials are. Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. These studies also may show which medical approaches work best for certain illnesses or groups of people. Clinical trials, also known as “clinical research studies”, or “clinical studies”, are studies in human volunteers that try to answer specific health questions. Some clinical trials measure the safety and effectiveness of potential new treatments. Other clinical trials observe health issues and behaviors in large groups of people.

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We challenge you to think about what you would and could do so that our community can be healthier. understanding of health disparities. 2. New medicines being developed are sub-optimal for African Americans because most of the clinical trials conducted in this country suffer from this pronounced lack of diversity which can further exacerbate minority health disparities. 3. Clinical trials are not only for sick people. In many cases, healthy participants are needed so they can study lifestyles and understand behaviors that may ultimately lead to illness. 4. It is rare that clinical trial volunteers have been hurt by the treatment or procedure being tested. At the same time, hundreds of thousands of people have been helped and are alive because they or other people chose to participate in a trial that resulted in a new, more effective treatment. 5. Clinical trials are closely monitored for their safe and ethical treatment of

volunteers. Federal guidelines and codes of ethics are in place to protect clinical research volunteers from harm. In addition, an Institutional Review Board, a panel of professionals and community members, is responsible for monitoring study safety and protecting volunteer rights in every clinical trial. So, what can we do? Do you have or is there someone in your family that has health problems? What would make you want to participate in a trial? If you knew you could help someone in your family, would you be motivated to participate? Would you be more likely to participate if you were approached by a doctor, a drug company, or someone you know? Researchers can’t confirm what the results of a clinical trial will be before it starts. But we do know that when we include people of color in research and in

clinical trials, we are much more likely to find how these treatments actually perform in the real world. We challenge you to think about what you would and could do so that our community can be healthier. It could not only help you recover from an illness but you could also be paving the way for others to be healthy. And, again, you don’t have to be sick to participate in a trial. If you are interested in advancing science, you can access information about all trials at is a web-based resource that provides patients, their family members, health care professionals, researchers, and the public with easy access to information on publicly and privately supported clinical studies on a wide range of diseases and conditions. The website is maintained by the National Library of Medicine at the NIH. Medical science will continue to advance around us. We should all do our part to build a healthier community. This content in this article was originally published on It has been reprinted with permission. ONYX MAGAZINE 27



Rich in Black History Photos and story by Andrew Wardlow for Visit Florida

Top: Mural. Left: Christ Church


lorida has a rich and diverse history. African-American landmarks and legacies exist in various locations throughout Pensacola. The following historical sites can be found in Escambia County. While some of these sites can be visited, other listings are marked “private” and are not open to the public.

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200 Church Street Built in 1890, the historic Kate Coulson house is now home of the African- American Heritage Society’s resource center. The AAHS was founded in 1990 to preserve and promote, African-American heritage and culture in Northwest Florida and throughout the state. 1606 Martin Luther King Blvd A Pensacola native, “Chappie” James became the first black four-star general in American military history in 1975. His illustrious career included 101 combat missions as a fighter pilot in Korea and 78 more in Vietnam. He was decorated for valor and air tactics. As commanding officer of the U.S. Air Force base in Libya, and wearing a 45 automatic stuffed under his belt, he confronted the new dictator, Moammar Khadafy, at the front gate and forced his withdrawal. Khadafy had intended to

seize the base with his half-tracks. In the late 1970s, the General was sought out as a potential candidate for lieutenant governor of Florida but died of a heart attack a few weeks after his retirement. The birthplace of Chappie James, this home is also where his mother, Lillie A. James, ran a school for black children. On Martin Luther King Boulevard, the city’s Memorial Garden includes a marker in Chappie James’ honor. 101 North 10th Avenue Established in 1846 as the first black church in Pensacola, John the Baptist Church is the oldest black church in Pensacola and the only surviving evidence of Hawkshaw, an African American community. 210 E. Gargoza Street, Historic District This simple, wood-frame building, built around 1804, is Pensacola’s only surviving “to the sidewalk” construction. It belonged to Julee Patton, a free woman of color. The cottage’s pegged framing and beaded ceilings were preserved during rehabilitation. It serves as a black history museum. 525 West Jackson Street The second oldest African-American Bap-

tist church in Pensacola, the congregation was organized in August 1880 after a break with John the Baptist Church. The present Romanesque Revival style structure was erected in 1918, after the original building was destroyed by fire. It is home to one of the first pipe organs in Pensacola. Gulf Islands National Seashore, Johnson Beach Road The Gulf Beach area was one of the few beaches that blacks were allowed to enjoy during segregation. Escambia County resident Rosamond Johnson joined the U.S. Army at 15, and died in the Korean War, a hero before his 18th birthday. The first resident from Escambia County to die in that conflict, Johnson died trying to cross the 38th parallel in efforts to rescue wounded soldiers. His bravery earned him a posthumous Purple Heart. Renamed Rosamond Johnson Beach by the county after the Korean Conflict ended, a formal monument was erected on the beach in his honor in 1996. Rosamond Johnson Beach is now part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. For more information on this and other historic attractions in Florida go to VISIT FLORIDA’s official historic sites guide. ONYX MAGAZINE 29


In our January/February 2017 issue, ONYX Magazine introduced Central Florida’s own incredible Denèe Benton who had just debuted on Broadway as Natasha in “Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812,” opposite multi-platinum singer Josh Groban. Her mastery in that role placed her next to some of entertainment’s most noted stars as a nominee for the 2017 Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. This is her first Tony nomination. Other recognition for her role as Natasha include: Audience Choice Award nomination for Favorite Leading Actress in a Musical; Broadway. com Audience Choice Award nomination for Favorite Breakthrough Performance; Audience Choice Award nomination for Favorite Onstage Pair (with Lucas Steele); Drama League nomination for the Distinguished Performance Award; Theatre World Award for Outstanding Broadway Debut. Her additional stage credits include “The Book of Mormon” in the West End and on tour, as well as regional productions of “Annie,” “Sunset Boulevard” and “Fiddler on the Roof.”


Fewer Floridians Have Health Coverage

The number of uninsured Floridians is going up, according to early national health survey results released by the Centers for Disease Control. The country’s uninsured rate stayed steady at 9 percent, but in Florida, the study shows 13.9 percent lack insurance. Among those 18-64 the uninsured number rose to 20 percent, up from 18 in 2015. Florida sits third in the ranking. Although many other states have found Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to be beneficial in helping insured rates stay healthy, Florida has rejected the measure with State Republicans calling it too expensive. The U.S. House of Representatives signed legislation that cuts $1 billion in taxes. The bill, which is supported by President Trump, could lower cost for healthier, younger, higher-income people, but could be financially challenging for older, sicker, lower-income Americans. In fact, up to 24 million people would be kicked out of coverage. Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s Press Secretary Lauren Schenone told the Palm Beach Post, “As someone who grew up without access to healthcare, Gov. Rick Scott knows firsthand how important improving access is to people across the state. The governor has not gone line-by-line on the current bill but he believes Congress cannot give up on getting rid of Obamacare and is encouraged that something is being done.” However, supporters of the ACA show 20 million more people gained access to healthcare since the act passed and Florida led the nation in using the federal Marketplace to get insurance, more than 1.5 million.

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Denèe Benton nominated for Tony Award

Tampa Classic is Back On

For more than two decades, football season in the Tampa Bay area hasn’t been the same. Since the heated match between Florida A&M University and Bethune-Cookman University, known as the Florida Classic, packed up and moved to Orlando in the late 1990s, residents have yearned for something to take its place. Now, the game is back on: this time between Florida A&M University and Tennessee State University. The Tampa Classic showdown takes place Saturday, Sept. 16 at 6 p.m. in Raymond James Stadium. Hillsborough County Commissioner Les Miller told the Tampa Bay Times, “We lost it (after the 1996 season) on a bitter taste and a bitter note,” he said. “I was not happy with the way we lost that, so I’ve been working hard” to get the game back. Some related events also have been planned for the football weekend. For more information, visit and purchase your tickets at

Wells Fargo to Increase African-American Home Ownership

Wells Fargo & Company, the leading U.S. home loan lender, announced a $60 billion lending commitment to create at least 250,000 African-American homeowners by 2027. The company’s commitment is a direct action to help address the lower homeownership rates in the African-American community and follows Wells Fargo’s announcement to address Hispanic homeownership rates in 2015. Wells Fargo’s commitment seeks to: • •

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Lend $60 billion to qualified African American consumers for home purchases by 2027; Increase the diversity of the Wells Fargo Home Lending sales team; and Support the effort with $15 million to support a variety of initiatives that promote financial education and counseling over the next ten years.

“Wells Fargo’s $60 billion lending goal can contribute to economic growth by making responsible homeownership possible for more African Americans in communities across the country,” said Brad Blackwell, executive vice president and head of housing policy and homeownership growth strategies for Wells Fargo. “We are proud to be the first mortgage lender to make a public commitment to help increase African-American homeownership. And, we are grateful for the support of key housing and civil rights organizations, who work alongside us to increase economic prosperity in our communities.” According to the U.S. Census Bureau, by the year 2024, 75 percent of the expected 14 million new households (renters and owners) in the U.S. will be diverse. African Americans are projected to represent 17 percent, or the third largest segment, of the new households. For more information or to speak with a home mortgage consultant, consumers can call 1-877-937-9357.



Luncheon Raises Funds for Health Equity By Kim McNair

Photos courtesy of Kim McNair Productions, LLC


ucille O’Neal hosted the 7th Annual Odessa Chambliss Quality of Life Fund, Inc., Faith and Fellowship Luncheon in May. Lucille, her family, friends, and special guests gathered at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando to celebrate life, fellowship in a special way, and encourage and uplift one another while raising funds for a worthy cause. Guests stopped by local vendor booths to purchase various items before enjoying a healthy lunch and live entertainment. Back by popular demand was Gospel Recording Artist, Dove and Stellar Award Winner, Songstress of the South Ms. Dottie Peoples. Another guest performer was the world-renowned Micah Stampley. The event Master of Ceremonies was the one and only Jolene O’Neal, radio personality from STAR 94.5. Portions of the proceeds from this event will benefit the Odessa Chambliss Center for Health Equity located on the campus of Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona. The Odessa Chambliss Center for Health Equity is committed to facilitating opportunities that enable all people to attain their full health potential. The center’s mission is to ensure no one is at a disadvantage when it comes to achieving this potential because of their race, ethnicity, gender, or social position. To accomplish this mission, the Center’s activities focus on health disparities, social determinates of health, and social justice.

Roy O’Neal Vivian O’Neal-Hailes, Velma O’Neal and Dr. Lucille O’Neal, Facilitators of the Quality of Life Fund, Inc.


ley Stamp

Dottie P eoples



Lillian Seays: Honored for Her Mission to Education By Marianne Eggleston


he City of Orlando, District 6 Commissioner Samuel B. Ings and the Orange County School System honored Lillian B. Seays by dedicating the Memorial Middle School Media Center in her name. Seays worked at the school as its media specialist from 1970 to 1992. In her 28-year career as a media specialist, she also inspired students at Carver Junior High School and in the downtown Orlando Public Library. Seays is the pioneer of Memorial’s morning announcements program. At her request, the school built a studio in the Media Center where professional media personalities would broadcast the news. Students at Memorial and students from Canada also broadcast the announcements. Seays impacted the lives of many youths as they passed through the doors of the media center. A strong advocate of literacy and education, Seays committed her life’s work to the youth within the Greater Orlando community. She was an active member of several organizations and community affiliations. She served as president for two consecutive terms with the Orlando Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and is one of the founding members of the sorority’s Orange County Alumnae Chapter. In an effort to mentor young women, she began the Delteens of Orlando now known as the Delta Gems. She is member of the Orlando chapter of The Links, Inc., and as its president, was instrumental in bringing the first Ebony Fashion Show to Orlando. She created the Minerva Awards and initiated the first Sickle Cell Screening Clinic and Health Fair in Orlando. Lillian B. Seays is the co-founder of ONYX Magazine and the ONYX Awards (LBS Foundation) along with her husband, Lester Seays. Thousands of dollars have been donated to assist in the college education of selected youths; and also to the Tri-County Sickle Cell organization and other Sickle Cell organizations throughout the state. She has received many accolades for her tireless works in the schools, her community and throughout Florida. 34 ONYX MAGAZINE

Lillian B. Seays

Memorial Middle School Media Center

ONYX is celebrating its 20th Anniversary as the ONYX brands continue to grow under the leadership of Publisher and Editor-In-Chief Richard “Rich” E. Black. Black promised he would keep the Seays’ initiative thriving. ONYX Magazine, Florida’s only statewide publication focused on African-American readers, celebrates the accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans and those of the African Diaspora in the Sunshine State.


Mable Butler: Celebrating 90 Fabulous Years By Sharon Fletcher Jones

Photos by Ted Hollins

ble Butler, Harris. Ma ie d d Fmr. E v. olleagues: r with Re r former c e , Fmr. able Butle h M lin y : p b e a v d h o C b A ft, is flanke hair Linda le C . m r of o m o fr m is d o secon n, Fmr. C ty Superv nge Coun ill Donega B ra . O m d m n o a C son ary I John Comm. M s. le w o C ill Election B

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ONYX Magazine salutes Mable Butler on the occasion of her 90th birthday. Having served as Orlando’s first female African-American City Commissioner from 1984 to 1990 and as Orange County District 6 Commissioner from 1990 to 1998, this longtime community leader and activist’s tenacity has never waned. Butler’s efforts early in her career brought to light the disparity in the number of minorities employed by county government departments and ensured African-American communities were more evenly represented. Her contributions while serving on both commissions are unmatched and her influence remains evident at the Mable Butler Family Center on East Michigan Street and on the street where she lives, Mable Butler Avenue. Butler serves as an invaluable member of the ONYX Magazine Advisory Board for which we are truly grateful.

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Eddy Moratin, Executive Director, LIFT Orlando, Mel Martinez, Chairman of the Southeast U.S. and Latin America, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer discuss economic development with small business owners in the Communities of West Lakes at Oley’s Kitchen & Smokehouse in Orlando, Fla.



“Florida is one of the most entrepreneurial states in the country but faces one of the biggest challenges to accessing credit. Accion’s expansion in neighborhoods in Central and Northern Florida is critical to meeting the capital needs of small business owners statewide,” said Paul Quintero, CEO of Accion in Florida.

Pendana at West Lakes Pendana at West Lakes, a brand new mixed-income community under construction has reached a milestone in the awarding of contracts for the project. To date over 90 percent of the project is under contract with a project goal of 25 percent of contracts going to minority owned businesses. LIFT Orlando says the general contractor surpassed the goal with over 45 percent of project contracts going to minority owned businesses representing an 80 percent increase in participation. Pendana will begin occupancy in Spring 2018 and the new development will offer state-of-the-art construction and high quality interior features and finishes in 200 spacious one-, two- and three-bedroom apartment homes with an expansive offering of amenities including a community center, fitness center, swimming pool, playground and more. Visit for more information on this beautiful community.

Photo by Travis Hull

LIFT Orlando and small businesses are taking steps forward on the collective effort focused on economic viability with the support of the recent JPMorgan Chase partnership that includes small business microlender Accion. The goal of the partnership is to help accelerate growth and increase capital for small businesses in the Communities of West Lakes. JPMorgan Chase provided a total of $400,000 in grants to both organizations to help expand their operations in the Communities of West Lakes and stimulate small business growth for the region. LIFT Orlando will use the funds to meet with local business owners, understand the challenges they face in growing their business, and come up with solutions by providing access to capital, expertise and other resources. “We are so excited about this partnership with JPMorgan Chase and Accion. This will allow us to identify and engage the small businesses and entrepreneurs rooted in these communities west of downtown and start identifying ways to accelerate their growth and power for job creation,” said LIFT Orlando Executive Director Eddy Moratin. Accion, the leading microlender for small businesses in Florida, will serve as one of the capital partners for LIFT Orlando and provide flexible funding to small business owners unable to qualify for traditional bank loans.


Tri-County Sickle Cell Disease Association Presents

WALK & HEALTH FAIR MARCH IN THE PARK 2017 September 30, 2017 8:00 a.m. Eagle Nest Park 5165 MetroWest Blvd. – Orlando, FL 32811

REGISTRATION ONLY $15! For more information on this event, please contact: Tri-County Sickle Cell Disease Association 927 South Goldwyn Avenue, Ste. 228 Orlando, Florida 32805 Office: 407-298-8871 / VM: 407-293-4809

JOIN US FOR FITNESS, FUN AND FELLOWSHIP Blood Mobile / Child Safety / Zumba Classes Refreshments / Prizes / Faces Painting / Fun For The Kids



Relax Boomer Parents; Millennials May Be More Financially Savvy Than You Realize By Ronnie Blair


according to a Bank of America/USA Today survey. But as confident as they are, they realize there are some things they just don’t know or simply can’t learn through a Google search, Notchick says. Millennials also are willing to listen to their boomer parents when it comes to financial advice. One study showed that 65 percent of millennials believe their parents provided a good example of how to have a successful financial future. They also realize that there is a cost to doing nothing and also a potential risk. • Millennials change with the times. Millennials adapt easily to change and new ideas, whereas a majority of boomers are slower to adapt as the world, and the markets, evolve. “What worked in the past may not work in the future, and the markets we are in right now are not the markets of the 1980s and 1990s,” Notchick says. On the other hand, boomers do have the advantage of experience, right

or wrong, and one thing their experience has taught them is that it’s always important to keep learning. • Millennials take a different route with retirement savings. While boomers were encouraged to contribute to a 401(k) or an IRA, millennials are increasingly looking toward Roth IRAs, Roth 401(k)s, S Corporations and a certain type of life insurance, Notchick says. They see the giant tax liability that awaits retirees who used those traditional tax-deferred accounts, and they want to avoid it. They prefer to pay their taxes now so they can withdraw the money tax free in retirement. “Because of the size of their generation, millennials are going to have a major impact on the economy and on investing in the coming years,” Notchick says. “Don’t sell them short because many of them are very much up to the challenge.”

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illennials came of age at a time when the job market was weak and their student-loan debt was high. Such a dreary combination did not bode well for a rosy financial future. But could it be, when all is said and done, that millennials will prove to be just as financially savvy as their baby boomer parents? “Many millennials definitely have traits and experiences that could serve them well when it comes to planning their finances,” says Dennis Notchick, an Investment Advisor and Certified Financial Planner with Safeguard Investment Advisory Group ( “Just to give you one example, many millennials are good about creating budgets. That’s a good habit to have because keeping track of your monthly expenses helps you do a better job of planning and saving.” Millennials have become the largest segment of the adult population, and a Deloitte study reports they are expected to grow their wealth significantly in the next several years, at least in part because they are heading into their prime-earning years. (The oldest millennials are in their mid30s.) The fact they grew up in a time of fast-developing technology and are quick to adapt to the changes also gives them an advantage, Notchick says. In the financial-investing world, new technology now provides for an instant snapshot of an investment or an entire estate on an app on their phone, and that’s a domain they are comfortable working within. Based on his experience, Notchick says other ways many millennials may fare well in the world of finance include: • Millennials are proactive when they need advice. Millennials brim with confidence when it comes to money, with 84 percent saying they are confident about their ability to handle their finances,


4 Critical Lessons That Every Aspiring Entrepreneur Needs To Learn

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By Ronnie Blair

American culture loves to celebrate the entrepreneurial breed – those daring men and women willing to take calculated risks to create new enterprises that will grab the nation’s imagination along with its pocketbooks. Those who reach the pinnacle of entrepreneurial excellence – such as Oprah Winfrey or Damon John – are viewed with a mixture of awe and envy. But what separates those who experience wild success from those left picking up the pieces of a failed enterprise? Part of it comes down to good old work ethic, says Bill Green, founder and CEO of The Crestar Group of Companies and author of “ALL IN: 101 Real Life Business Lessons for Aspiring Entrepreneurs” ( “If you don’t want to work harder than everyone and you don’t have your passion, you shouldn’t be an entrepreneur,” Green says. But that’s far from the whole story, says Green, whose own route to suc-

cess began in a flea market. There are plenty of other lessons that budding entrepreneurs need to learn. Just a few include: Become a tactical and strategic CEO. Tactical leadership is doing things right. Strategic leadership is doing the right things. “You probably are doing a lot of things right tactically to get your startup off the ground,” Green says. “But now it’s time to think about your long-term strategy.” The greatest CEOs are visionaries, always plotting their company’s next big move, he says. “If you see a way to improve your business, you’d better have the vision and the guts to pull the trigger,” Green says, “even if the naysayers say it can’t be done. Let your employees complete you. “Most of us can’t do it all or know everything, so it’s important to hire a team that can compensate for your shortcomings,” Green says. The best way to do that, he says, is to think like

an NBA owner who builds a championship team by drafting a well-balanced roster of players whose abilities complement each other. Good customers complain, bad customers go away. No one enjoys hearing complaints, but those angry customers should be viewed as a gift, Green says. They care about your product or service and they want you to fix whatever problem they’re experiencing so they can continue to have that product or service. Many unhappy customers just walk away never to return, so you don’t know why you lost their business. The best deals are the ones you don’t make. There are good business deals out there, but there are many more bad deals, Green says. It’s important that any deal you make is the right one for your company, and not something you do just because making a new acquisition or introducing a new product is exciting. People will always try to seduce you with the “next great deal,” but stay focused on what’s best for your business. “Don’t let anyone influence you into making a deal you don’t want to make,” he says. Ultimately, though, entrepreneurial success comes down to your own passion and tenacity. “It doesn’t cost anything not to believe in something,” Green says. “It costs everything to believe in an idea so much that you’re willing to spend your life doing it and doing it until it becomes a reality. That’s guts. That’s passion. That’s the resolve you need to succeed.”


Downtown Orlando’s cultural scene blossoms with excitement brought forth by the infusion of visual and performing arts. For almost 20 years, the Downtown Arts District has fostered the growth of art and cultural venues, public art projects, arts engagement programs, and signature events.

Find your cultural roots. Learn more at


With his distinctive professional experiences as an administrator in the education, government, and corporate sectors, Gary T. Hartfield is a unique blend of an entrepreneur, educator, leader, and visionary. Utilizing his successful history of building multi-million dollar budgets, overseeing multisite business locations and managing dozens of personnel, Hartfield is committed to equipping organizations devoted to community improvement with the leadership and business skills needed to fulfill their missions. As a first-generation college student, Hartfield is especially committed to partnering with community agencies to mentor youths and young adults as well as empower them with the competencies, resources and information needed to maximize their potential. Hartfield is the president and CEO of Serenity Village, Inc., and the principal and founder of Serenity Insurance and Consulting, LLC. Because of his business success, Hartfield is committed to helping other minority businesses succeed. His vision is to establish a small business incubator in the newly acquired Hartfield Plaza that will support the development and growth of African-American and Hispanic businesses. Hartfield also is an accomplished author of “Stand,” a personal empowerment memoir. The principles shared in this memoir are the core principles and values that have shaped his life, his purpose and his vision for the future. Hartfield is a dedicated philanthropist who supports numerous organizations around the state. Along with endowing a scholarship at Florida A&M University, Hartfield champions the Gray’s Project, the University of West Florida Scholarship Fund, the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), Moffitt Cancer Center George Edgecomb Society, Brothers United Building Brothers Alliance (BUBBA), and Shiloh MBC - Men’s Leadership Conference. He is active in his community serving on community boards and in groups. Among them are: UNCF Tampa Leadership Council, Leadership Alliance Advisory Board, Saturday Morning Breakfast Group, 100 Black Men of Tampa Bay, and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Hartfield earned a bachelor of Engineering Technology degree at Florida A&M University, a master of Business Administration degree at the University of West Florida and he completed a certificate in Executive Leadership at Cornell University.


Photo by Kerrick Williams Photography



AVA L. PARKER Palm Beach State College President Ava L. Parker leads Palm Beach County’s largest higher education institution with a strategic approach emphasizing innovation, student success, and business and community collaboration. Parker is the first female president in the history of the institution, which opened in 1933 as Florida’s first public community college. Under Parker’s leadership, the College has opened a fifth campus, improved student success rates and increased support for the College from both public and private sources. PBSC also has set enrollment records, with the highest fall enrollment in the College’s history achieved in fall 2016. An esteemed educational leader at the local, state and national levels, Parker serves on the Advisory Committee of Presidents of the Association of Community College Trustees. She also is the support councils liaison for the Association of Florida Colleges’ Council of Presidents. Before joining Palm Beach State, Parker was executive vice president and chief operating officer at Florida Polytechnic University. She served for more than a decade on the Florida Board of Governors of the State University System, including serving as board chair; she also served on the University of Central Florida’s Board of Trustees and was general counsel at Edward Waters College. Parker’s leadership extends beyond the educational realm. She is on the board of directors of Orchid Island Capital, a publicly-traded specialty finance company. She is a member of the Women’s International Leadership Forum and a member of Leadership Florida Class XXI. She also served as president of the Virgil Hawkins Florida Chapter of the National Bar Association. The South Florida Business Journal has named her to its 2017 Power Leaders List, and she was profiled recently in the Florida Leadership publication. She also was recently selected by Legacy magazine as one of South Florida’s Most Powerful and Influential Black Leaders and Educator of the Year. Active in community organizations, Parker is on the board of directors of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County, the Economic Council, the Central Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce and the Palm Beach North Chamber of Commerce, where she also serves on the Strategic Planning Committee. She is a member of the West Palm Beach Chapter of the Links, and she was honored as a female leader by the Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church. Earlier in her professional career, Parker was a partner in the Jacksonville law firm of Lawrence & Parker, general counsel of the 11th Episcopal District of the AME Church, assistant general counsel for the state Department of Transportation, and assistant public defender in Miami-Dade County. A native of Santa Rosa County in Northwest Florida, Parker earned her B.A. and J.D. degrees from the University of Florida. She and her husband, Joe Gibbons, are the parents of twins, Bailey and Parker.





ecretary of Homeland Security John F. Kelly announced that Temporary Protected Status (TPS), originally scheduled to end July 22, would be extended for an additional six months. The TPS program allows immigrants whose homelands were struck by natural disasters or military conflict to remain in the U.S. and to receive work permits until the disaster or unrest in their country subsides and conditions improve. The U.S. originally designated TPS to Haiti in 2011 after an earthquake devastated the country. Haiti is one of 13 countries with a TPS designation. For about 58,000 Haitian immigrants; thousands living in South Florida, the extension will now 44 ONYX MAGAZINE

Democratic U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings

Democratic U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson

end on January 22, 2018. Under United States law, Sec. Kelly could have extended TPS for up to 18 months. Some South Florida lawmakers and more than 400 faith leaders and organi-

zations are disappointed that the current administration did not grant a longer extension. In a statement released in early May, Church World Service President and CEO the Rev. John L. McCullough, indicated terminating TPS would essentially violate moral, religious and American values. A letter to the secretary bearing the signatures of 16 key members of the United States Senate, including Florida’s Bill Nelson, also pushed for the 18-month extension citing Haiti’s continued struggle to recover from an unprecedented series of catastrophic events. Natural disasters have left the country in shambles with more than 200,000 deaths, more than 300,000

Most of my coworkers at the Fort Lauderdale Airport are like me – we came from Haiti for a better life for our loved ones. -Marie Chery, Janitor, 32BJ SEIU

injuries, displacement of millions of people, and nearly $8 billion in damages. Additionally, the country’s cholera epidemic has killed more than 10,000 people and sickened at least 800,000 more. The consensus among legislators and humanitarians is that conditions will not vastly improve over the next six months. Haiti’s Ambassador to the U.S. Paul Altidor was adamant that a minimum of 18 months was needed to “get things going” [towards recovery]. Altidor expressed hope that a six-month extension will afford time to broker longer-term relief and give Haitian and U.S. officials “sufficient time to come back to the negotiating table.” In contrast, Kelly warned Haitians who hold the special status not to assume TPS will be renewed after the new expiration date. Democratic U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson’s Miami district has one of the country’s largest Haitian communities. Wilson said the six-month extension “is in fact a

cup half full situation.” “The reality is that in six months Haiti will still be in no position to absorb and aid 58,000 unemployed people,” she said in a statement. She has invited Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials to join her on a “fact-finding mission” to Haiti to “view firsthand exactly what Haitian natives living in the U.S. with temporary protected status would be returning to.” Several months ago, Democratic U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings and a group of bipartisan South Florida lawmakers urged the DHS to extend the TPS deadline beyond six months. Hastings hopes that Sec. Kelly will take the coming weeks and months to “soberly assess Haiti’s current situation.” South Florida Democratic U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch indicated he was pleased to see the current administration give Haitians a temporary six-month extension of TPS rather than abruptly ending the humanitarian measure and throwing thousands

of lives in limbo. “But it’s quite clear that conditions in Haiti won’t improve sufficiently in six months to justify letting TPS expire,” he said. “Sending these people back into dangerous conditions directly violates the principle reason for granting TPS in the first place.” Florida Senators Nelson and Marco Rubio both indicated they would continue to work with the current administration and the DHS on the TPS issue with Nelson adding, “There’s just no way that in six months that the nation of Haiti can absorb 60,000 people.” Sec. Kelly asserted that the dissolution of camps set up in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake and plans to rebuild the National Palace in Port-au-Prince are indicators of the contrary. Kelly stated he will review TPS but strongly encouraged Haitians with TPS to prepare for departure from the United States or to apply for other immigration benefits. There is a looming fear among humanitarian organizations that DHS is going to end TPS in January. Kamal Essaheb, policy and advocacy director at the National Immigration Law Center assessed, “A sixmonth extension will hardly appease the concerns of those who face a return to a country that has been ravaged by natural disasters and continues to experience political and economic turmoil. A longer-term solution is necessary and in the best interest of both the United States and Haiti.” “Most of my coworkers at the Fort Lauderdale Airport are like me – we came from Haiti for a better life for our loved ones. Some of them have Temporary Protected Status. If it is not renewed, not only will it separate families, but it will create chaos for the businesses, like the airlines, that rely on workers with TPS.” -Marie Chery, Janitor, 32BJ SEIU “I’ve lived in the U.S. for many years and I’ve been able to make a good living and raise a family here. If my fellow Haitians with TPS are sent home, it means their families here and there will be cut off from any chance to prosper, or even to survive.” –Marie LeBon, Commercial Cleaner, 32BJ SEIU According to the Immigrant Legacy Resource Center, Haitian families that have received TPS contribute nearly $280 million per year to our GDP. ONYX MAGAZINE 45


It’s summer. It’s Florida. It’s hot. One way to kick the heat is to cool down with fun, fruity beverages like this Cantaloupe Cooler. This punch is great for backyard barbeques and the whole family can enjoy it. Cheers!

Cantaloupe Cooler

Ingredients • 8 cups (1/2-inch) cantaloupe cubes • 1 1/2 cups ginger ale • 1/3 cup water • 1 (6-oz.) can frozen limeade concentrate • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger How to Make It 1. Place cantaloupe cubes in a single layer in an extra-large zip-top plastic freezer bag, and freeze 8 hours. Let stand at room temperature 15 minutes. 2. Process half each of cantaloupe, ginger ale, water, limeade concentrate, and ginger in a blender until smooth; pour mixture into a pitcher. Repeat procedure with remaining half of ingredients; stir into pitcher, and serve immediately. Substitute honeydew or watermelon if you like. Add your favorite adult beverage to taste to spice up this cool drink!



ONYX Magazine_July/August 2017  

Family issue

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