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LIZALYN SMITH, Mechanical Engineer at NASA

ALICIA ROBINSON, Empowering Women & Girls

Dr. JaNICE MARSHALL PUSHING OBSTACLES ASIDE TO FULFILL HER VISION


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Founder / Publisher ™

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Shelley M. Shockley

Managing Editor Writers Shelley M. Shockley Ruby Lee Gamble Kimberly Smith-Woodford

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Creative Bele’ Wondwossen

Cover Story: Marsha Walker Eastwood Photo: Jason Garrett

Contributing Writers Kim Brown Marsha Walker Eastwood Rhonda Crowder Michelle Phillips Fay Brittany Garrett Stephanie Phelps

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From the Editor: Shelley M. Shockley

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elcome to a new year of content highlighting the beautiful, talented and phenomenal women of northeast Ohio. As we enter our sixth year, I'm reflective yet determined! Birthing each edition of this publication comes with its challenges, yet here in PWM, we press on with the hope that we are bringing light, hope and thoughts of promise to our readers. In this edition, I am offering a level of transparency that I've never allowed the world to see, and I hope that it and the stories of perseverance within these pages will inspire you to fight for you and those around you.

mind of Kent State's Alicia Robinson. Seedlings that would later sprout and branch off into her (non-profit, Limitless Ambition) which seeks to nurture young women just as Robinson was during her youth. Similarly, Lizalyn Smith demonstrated a high aptitude for math and science coupled with an interest in how things were made which propelled her into a pre-college engineering program in her hometown of Detroit. Today she is an accomplished engineer working at NASA Glenn Research Center. Lizalyn gives back to her community and girls like her through establishment of community programs and her service as president of the NEO Chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers. It is women like Robinson and Smith that we must all applaud and promote. We must get to know their names and help them to be the leaders in our communities they are destined to be. Showcasing that they exist are valuable and never allowing anyone to devalue their worth. I believe they are doing that on their own, but it's always helpful to have a cheering section. Dr. JaNice Marshall featured on our cover is truly the epitome of the confidence I am challenging each of us to have. When you read her story, you will see that she pushed through challenges early in her life to achieve her goals. The first experience was not the last, and the circumstances were more intense but it had nothing on the spirit, drive, and determination of Dr. Marshall. I encourage you to sit with her story after reading it. Just think about the obstacles she straddled so that she could make a difference in the lives of others through education and educational opportunities.

I'd like to introduce you to Shelley 3.0, a woman who continues to strive to find her place in the world and impact those around her in a positive way. What is different in version 3.0? A level of maturity coupled with some of the same poor decision-making found in previous versions. Today the difference is, I believe I am truly learning from my mistakes and have a heightened sense of awareness when these mishaps occur. This leads to my first bit of advice – no matter the age, as long as you wake each morning and are able to function, you can work on your mistakes. Many of us use the numeric system as a means of limiting our lives and dreams. We can't wait to reach milestone birthdates and as they pass and the years turn into decades, we look back and instead of celebrating the joy of making it this far, we hang on to the “coulda, shoulda, woulda” syndrome of defeat.

Remember I said to focus on you, but when you do that have a purpose and that purpose should be to improve the world for at least one other person. Each of us has the ability to uplift someone else, yet we are often beat down by life and other “haters” that we can't see the light shining within you.

Whatever you could have done in the past, you can do today if it is still an important goal in your life. If it will fulfill that yearning deep inside of you – Go For It. Don't hinder your growth by believing that everything happens in a certain time frame.

As you are focusing on yourself, flip over to our beauty section and get tips on how to take better selfies and family photos. It's all about angles, lighting, and makeup. Our Beauty/Makeup writer Brittany Garrett and local photographer Kamron Khan offer their advice.

As a youngster, I had visions of traveling the globe as a roving reporter bringing stories of wonder and beauty to readers. That didn't quite become a reality instead I delved into the politics of Cleveland and East Cleveland, Ohio and reported them to the masses. While on that journey there were many highs, lows but most importantly growth. I've served in a presidential press pool during former President Bill Clinton's tenure in the White House. I've traveled the country covering things as varied as the opening of a new Disney theme park, to the beautiful white sand found on the beaches of Destin, Florida.

As a Christian and woman working to be closer to my Lord, I regularly have to remind myself that no matter what “man” does, I have a powerful Father who is watching over me and He has clearly stated in Isaiah 54:17, “No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgement You shall condemn.”

At this juncture in my life, I could say that the best has past and settle for whatever life has to offer, but there's no way I'm going to do that. You see, we live in a world where people continue to work at discrediting, devaluing and just marginalizing women and that is unacceptable. In this edition, we have young women who recall being introduced to programs that sought to give them a foundation to build upon their dreams. Programs like Upward Bound where seeds were planted in the heart and 4 ▒ JANUARY - FEBRUARY 2018

As I sat to write this column, I had to repeat this to myself because there are those who are eager to denounce my greatness, devalue my worth and enslave me in their world of negativity. I will not have it, and I encourage each of you to stand strong against all of the adversities that are facing you on a daily basis. Then offer a hand to your sister and help her over the hurdles of rejection! It is our hope that you will gain some insight from the women featured in this edition and every edition of Phenomenal Woman! Have a phenomenal month and I'll meet you here again in March!


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CONTENTS

Is Bitcoin the next big thing in personal savings?

COVER

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Dr. JaNice Marshall Pushing obstacles aside to fulfill her vision

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Lizalyn Smith, Mechanical Engineer at NASA

MOVIE REVIEWS 28 Delicious Recipes

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Alicia Robinson, Empowering Women & Girls

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Is Bitcoin the next big thing in personal savings? By: Marsha Walker Eastwood, BS.Ed, MSHSV PWM Contributing Writer

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ach new year presents an opportunity to ditch the old way of doing things and create a new game plan for managing our finances. The idea is to spend less and save more, and for the average person that is easier said than done. Back in the day when there was a general distrust of banks, money allocated for savings was placed in mattresses, jars, cans and bottles secreted in closets and crawlspaces even between the pages of the family bible. The logic behind this behavior was when it was needed the money would be readily available. The downside of that plan was in the event of a fire, just like the house, furniture and personal belongings, the saving went up in flames as well. The stock market crash in 1929, along with the loss of jobs and failure of more than 40 percent of banks created even more distrust of financial institutions and investing. There was little money to save and what was siphoned off from survival funds was placed in a knotted handkerchief often called the bosom purse, or in an empty butter box placed in the icebox. As money languished in mattresses, butter boxes and jars it generated no interest, so no matter how many years it was hidden, the value remained the same. In the late 1930's and early 1940's more and more people were ready for some promising plan to generate income for savings. Most looked for “guaranteed” ways to increase and secure their savings through investments and one of the most popular and most hyped of these early investments was the government issued saving bonds. In 1941 the first big savings thing – the Series E Savings Bond, or War Bond as it 6 ▒ JANUARY - FEBRUARY 2018

came to be known was issued. According to the US Treasury, the new Series E savings bonds were originally known as the "Defense Bond" in 1941, the "War Bond" from 1942 to 1945, and later, just a regular savings bond. Within a few years of its introduction, the new savings bonds became the most widely held and popular investment in the history of the world. Tens of millions of American households used their money to invest in the Series E savings bonds. The first series E savings bonds were issued with 10year maturities but were later extended to 30 or 40 years depending upon the issue date. The last Series E bonds are scheduled to stop earning interest in 2010. When they were first issued the paper, bonds could be purchased in $25 denominations at a discount of 75 percent of the face value and 2.9 percent interest rate with maturity in ten years. The cost was $18.75. The appeal of course was the ability to buy in smaller denominations. The bonds also met the ratio of volatility-stability-ROI (return in investment) for the novice investor. After all, what was good for the country had to be good for them. The Series E bond was followed by the Series EE. The older Series EE bonds carried a high fixed base rate along with semi-annual adjustments. 30 years from the date of purchase when the bonds mature, the owner is mandated to pay taxes on the accrued income in the year in which the bonds mature - even if the bonds are not cashed in. For those senior citizens whose savings strategy included a staggered cash in of bonds worth more than their face value, and thereby avoiding earning income that could change their tax bracket, and a possible increase in Medicare premiums, the IRS is two steps ahead and the owner will be hit with a penalty for not declaring the income in the year the bond matures.


In the mid to late 90's a few major events combined to make the marketplace ripe for the next big financial investment opportunities. Greater public access to and the commercialization of the internet coupled with the most extraordinary period of capital growth the country had ever witnessed. The latter was due in large part to the passage of TRA97, also known as the Taxpayer Relief Act in 1997 which reduced the tax on capital gains. This paved the way for online start-ups that created an investor funding frenzy among the experienced as well as novices where caution was thrown to the wind. Dot Com businesses issued IPO's (Initial Public Offerings) fast and furiously to attract the large amount of cheap money available from investors. Unlike Savings Bonds and investing in the dot coms where actual currency exchanges took place, getting into the Bitcoin game is a lot different. Bitcoin is a form of digital intangible currency. Securities regulator Joseph Borg defines Bitcoin as “many things: a proxy for more stable units like the dollar and the euro, a speculative investment, a payments mechanism, a means of hiding transactions from various governments and tax collectors, and a monetary

innovation that might legitimately transform the world. Yet cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, are also a bubbly, frothy, and overhyped phenomenon—a latter-day version of a penny stock”. The experienced and savvier investors are dumping money in Bitcoin the way they did in dot coms. Novices are taking the most financially dangerous route and using their credit cards to purchase the cryptocurrency.” The process for purchasing Bitcoin is not as easy as buying bonds or investing in the market. It requires due diligence in learning the language, selecting a “wallet” to store your virtual currency in until you use it, selecting a “reputable” broker which can be either a broker or an exchange. Actual payment methods are at the discretion of the broker. Coinbase is the only one that accepts most forms of payment including PayPal. Bitcoin experts Tyler Lacoma and Jon Martindale advise people just getting into Bitcoin to, “Have your endgame planned out early on. Be prepared by setting up a seller account now, or figure out how to buy what you want with it before you actually plan to. That way when the time comes, you'll not have a panicked rush while everyone else is trying to do the same”. www.PHENOMENALWOMAN.me ▒ 7


The Parenting New Year's Resolutions You Need Now From the desk of Jane Christyson CEO, Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio

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am not good at resolutions but I feel compelled to make them. Not making a resolution sounds like you either gave up or your ego is over-inflated. There are plenty of things that I should resolve to do. My problem is scope. I resolve to do things that are too wimpy or practically impossible, so by the end of January I can't measure any progress - if I can even remember what I am measuring. I needed a resolution revolution, and luckily for me the experts at GSUSA were ready to help with their Raising Awesome Girls blog. Although this blog is written from a parenting perspective, it's good advice for anyone who cares about the young women in their lives as an active mentor or even casual adviser. This year, resolve to try something different with these ten simple but effective, resolutions and help make the world a better place for every girl. The new year is a time of beginnings and often big (often pretty unrealistic) goals. This year, try something different with these ten simple but effective parenting resolutions. 1. Sharpen your listening skills Knowing that her opinion matters, that you really want to understand what she's going through, and that she can tell you anything (really, anything) will serve your daughter and help keep her safe and happy. Open up the lines of communication by setting aside some time each week to connect. Put away your phones (no screens allowed!), and ask how she feels about different issues that affect her life or those of her friends. Find out what she's excited about and also what might be making her nervous or upset. It might feel a little awkward at first, but once you get going, you'll see a whole new side to your daughter, and she'll appreciate the amazing amount of support coming from you. 2. Let her fail once in a while Few things are more heartbreaking than watching your daughter struggle, which is why so many parents routinely step in to make their child's life go more smoothly. The problem is, though, that when a parent interferes and “fixes� things for their kids, they're actually keeping them from learning about responsibility and resilience. So, step back and let her mess up a little here and there. Similarly, expose her to and encourage her to try new things and stretch a bit beyond her comfort zone. She might be hesitant at first, but just letting her know you believe in her can be an incredible confidence boost! 3. Support her fashion choices Many girls already feel self-conscious about their looks, so giving your daughter the freedom to express herself through clothing she feels good in can help her feel more confident. Of course that doesn't mean you need to let her 8 ▒ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

wear anything and everything she wants, but do try to find a happy medium. If she's picked out a dress or outfit that's not age-appropriate, ask her what it is she likes about the item and then work with her to find something similar that gives off the same style or vibe. Self-expression is an important part of growing up, and by supporting her style, you let her know you see and love her just the way she is. 4. Go beyond grades Stop being the grade police! Yes, grades are important when it comes to getting into college, but many other things are just as important (and, believe it or not, there are plenty of great schools that will want your daughter's enrollment even without so-called perfect marks). Instead, let her own her grades. If your daughter is getting low marks in school, talk to her about what the problem might be, and then have a similar discussion with the teacher to try to figure out the issue. But know that straight As aren't necessarily a good sign either. Getting perfect grades too easily could be a sign that your daughter isn't being challenged. It always pays to go beyond the report card and learn what's really going on at school before making assumptions based on end-of-term scores. 5. Invest in her friends Strong friendships help motivate girls to aim higher, help them feel less stressed, and make the emotional ups and downs of growing up a whole lot easier. Help your daughter form solid bonds with her buddies by offering to set up or host play dates, giving her rides to see her friends, and showing an interest in who she's hanging out with online and off. Our lives are all busy, and it might seem easier to just let them stay in touch via text or phone calls, but there's nothing like an in-person hangout with her best friends to give her a boost. Surprised by one of her choices in friends? Ask her about what she values in a friend in general, then what she values about this friend. What do they have in common? You might learn something new about your daughter or become aware of an unhealthy relationship situation she might need help with. 6. Get her more girl-only time Speaking of friends, although it's great to have a wide variety of them, girls especially benefit from time spent in an all-girl environment. Whether it's an all-female sports team, regular slumber parties, or even her Girl Scout troop meeting, these work as a type of oasis in her otherwise coed world. When there are no boys to be compared to (or to compare herself to!), she can discover her passions, stretch her limits, and shine her absolute brightest without the social pressures of being seen as too girly, too masculine, or too anything. Experiences like these can be particularly meaningful when she's trying something new or exploring an interest that girls and women haven't been traditionally known for.


7. Take her passions seriously

9. Embrace her feelings

Invest time, energy, and learn the language of whatever she's into. Even if you don't particularly care for skateboarding, jewelry making, gardening, video games, or that new TV show she won't stop talking about, showing that you support her hobbies will give your daughter a sense of empowerment knowing that you respect her interests. Consider asking her to teach you a thing or two about it, as well. She'll love being the one to pass along knowledge for once!

Encourage her to speak directly about the way she feels. Sometimes it's hard for parents to hear their children when they're upset, dissatisfied, or frustrated, but it's so incredibly important for her to have the language and space to express all of her emotions—yes, even when they're sad or angry. Too often, girls are socialized to think they have to be happy and polite all the time, but girls and women are complex human beings and shouldn't feel the need to bottle up their thoughts and reactions to the world. In fact, suppressing those emotions typically means they come out in other ways, often through relationally aggressive behavior. Giving your daughter the confidence, words, and skills to share her emotions with others will help her in her relationships now and well into the future.

8. Be around Even if your daughter is super independent, there will be times that she'd love to turn to you—and you'll want to be there for those moments. Even when she's doing her own thing, it's often reassuring for her to know you're on-hand and accessible. Some call this the “potted plant” theory of parenting: you probably don't need a potted plant for any particular reason on most days, but it sure is nice having one around. Similarly, especially as your girl gets older, she might not seem to need you as much, but your presence makes her life better. Obviously, parents have lives (work, friends, errands, rest!), and there's no reason to stop those things, but it's never a bad thing to take stock of how you're spending your time and to make sure you're around and present for your daughter as much as you can be.

10. Be kinder to yourself The best way to instill confidence and self-compassion in your girl is to model it yourself. If you've ever found yourself criticizing the way you look or picking apart personal shortcomings in front of her, take a moment to pause and try again with something more positive. Of course nobody's life is perfect, and it would be silly to pretend that yours is, but try to focus on the positive—the efforts you're making, the improvements you're working on, and the things you're proud of—rather than the negative. Kindness is contagious, especially when it starts from within.

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Lizalyn Smith, Engineer at NASA Inspiring Tomorrow's Female Leaders in STEM Careers Math and science were Lizalyn Smith's favorite subjects during her early years. Hailing from the “Motor City,” is the daughter of a mechanic with a love for math and science; all played a role in motivating her to become an engineer. When Smith was in the 9th grade in Detroit, she was introduced to a program called the Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program, an additional factor that inspired her to study engineering. She stated, “I really liked figuring out how things work and learning how math and science could be applied to everyday life.” Growing up, Smith says “I had some challenges but it was also fun.” The opportunities she received in high school connected her with engineering and technical mentors who were able to provide some guidance on college and career selection. More 10 ▒ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

importantly, she says “the mentors were able to give first-hand insights into the challenges and opportunities that would come for me as an African American woman in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, (STEM) field.” Following her graduation from Cody High School, Smith attended the University of Michigan earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering. Her interest in NASA was sparked during her graduate studies as she worked on aerospace-related projects, and interned at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. Smith earned her Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University in Greensboro, North Carolina. From there, she began her career at NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland.


Her past work included structural analysis on various components of the upper stage of the Ares I-X rocket, which successfully launched in October 2009. Her work also led to the successful launch of the Exploration Flight Test – 1, which launched in December 2014. Currently, Smith serves as the Lockheed Martin Service Module Structures Subsystem Manager at NASA Glen Research Center. In this capacity, she provides oversight for work that NASA Lunar Module Structures team does in support of the hardware development. While Smith loves working at an agency that does very unique and exciting work every day, she conceded that there are challenges. “There never seems to be enough time in each day to complete every task, so it can be challenging to balance everything, especially when urgent issues come up.” She said.

Despite the progress made in getting girls to join STEM fields of studies, the gender gap still persists, particularly in engineering. “It is critical to introduce young girls to hands-on STEM experiences at a very young age,” says Smith. “These learning experiences should happen in an academic setting very early and very often, and they should also happen at home in our everyday lives.” A solid STEM education can help students obtain the necessary skills to thrive in the 21st-century global economy. According to a report by the center on Education and the Workforce, eight million new jobs will be available in STEM-related fields in the current year. Hence, concerted efforts are needed to inspire more people to study and take up careers in STEM fields.

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Lizalyn Smith, inspiring tomorrow’s leaders

Smith argues that “Often, kids may think that having a Smartphone at eight years old is cool. Why isn't the idea of an eight-year-old gaining the knowledge of how a Smartphone works also viewed as cool by her peers?” Providing solutions to this question, Smith said, “it is important that when parents and educators notice innate curiosity and skills in these subjects in young girls, these traits are praised and encouraged, not dismissed, mocked or minimized.” Adding “when it becomes the societal norm for girls to deliberately and consistently receive the message that STEM subjects are tangible, relevant and doable, their propensity to engage in these subjects, and ultimately enter these fields will also grow.” Smith appreciates the powerful impact of programs that bring awareness, opportunity, and experiences to kids. Her deep interest in community outreach and engagement stems from her own experience and participation in programs as a youth, specifically in the programs that bring awareness of careers options. More importantly, she stressed, “this especially holds true for youth who may not otherwise get exposed to careers that are not prevalent in their communities.” Smith's advice to young women and girls who plan to pursue STEM fields of study is to “not let societal 12 ▒ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

perceptions about hard math and science fields steer your decision making.” She encourages them to learn as much as possible and to not be afraid to get handson. She said, “There is a wealth of information at our fingertips about everything from building robots, writing computer codes, performing open-heart surgery and everything in between. Knowledge is power! I would also advise interested young women to find a mentor, be persistent and never stop learning.” A phenomenal role model, Smith served as president of The NEO chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). The Society encourages members to excel academically, succeed professionally and positively impact the community. NSBE has programs and events aimed at members at every level, from kindergarten students through graduate school students and working professionals. Locally in Northeast Ohio, “one of the main focus areas of NSBE has been to bring awareness of engineering careers to area high school students.” She noted. Over the course of her career, Lizalyn Smith has participated in, and facilitated dozens of community events, including tutoring, speaking to students, and judging science fairs. She aims to inspire students to excel academically, pursue higher education, and positively impact their communities.


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Alicia Robinson,

Opening Doors and Empowering Women & Girls

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s a young high school student, Alicia Robinson of Warren, Ohio participated in the Upward Bound, a pre-college program for students who are lowincome or who will be first-generation college students. The support she received through this program has resonated with her and inspired her to offer a similar opportunity to teens and women through Limitless Ambition, her non-profit organization. The Upward Bound program gave high school students the opportunity to spend the summers on the Kent State University campus and to take “college – like” classes to help prepare them for college. As a participant in the program, she got connected to the resources she needed to excel academically and exposed her to a lot of things that helped to fuel her academic journey. Subsequently, Robinson joined Kent State University, put in hard work and graduated with a bachelor's degree in Fashion Merchandising. She then received a job at Jo-Ann Fabrics Corporate headquarters where she gained a lot of skill-sets that contributed to her success. 14 ▒ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

While Robinson enjoyed working at Jo-Ann Fabrics, her deeply ingrained commitment to empowering women and teens led her to establishing her nonprofit organization, Limitless Ambition. Its mission is to “empower young women from economically deprived areas through enrichment programs, online resources, and community workshops.” In fact, she developed a passion for women's empowerment issues while she was in high school. Explaining her reasons, she noted “I began to notice the different opportunities and experiences my classmates were having. I wished they all could be in Upward Bound or some program that would help them navigate the obstacles they were encountering.” Robinson returned back to Kent State where she earned a Master of Arts in Human Development and Family Studies. Following graduation, she joined Kent State's Women's Center initially as a student worker, and successively held the positions of Graduate Assistant, Program Coordinator and then Assistant Director.


In her current capacity as Assistant Director of the Women's Center, Robinson is responsible for developing strategies and identifying resources for programs, services, and advocacy. She also provides resources for female-identifying faculty, staff, and students. On her multitude responsibilities at the center, she was explicit “Very seldom are two days the same.” “On any given day, I could be meeting with students to help them on their academic journey, planning a program to help highlight student success or I could be developing a women's empowerment workshop to facilitate with sororities.” The Women's Center which falls under KSU's division for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion aims at empowering and connecting women to the resources they need through civic engagement, women's leadership, activism and women's empowerment. Robinson's journey to where she is today was by no means a smooth ride. In her own accounts, she recalls going through “a variety of things such as unhealthy relationships, body image issues, low self-esteem and depression.” Thankfully, she overcame those challenges through counseling and spiritual support. Her nonprofit organization, Limitless Ambition, is a response to help others with similar needs and has so far impacted the lives of over 3,000 young women from Northeast Ohio. Supported by a board of directors and a dedicated volunteer team, Limitless Ambition has carried out programs in Warren City Schools, Akron Public Schools, and Cleveland Metropolitan Schools and facilitated community workshops with various organizations. At the heart of Robinson lies the passion for the advancement of underrepresented groups in general and African-American women in particular. Witnessing her fellow sisters wade through oppression day in day out, and facing such hurdles as institutional racism, faulty legislation, appropriation to name a few, ignited Robinson's thinking and pushed her to design solutions that could help overcome barriers. “I think that a lot needs to be done to change the current climate for underrepresented women; there is advocacy, policy change, educational rewiring, cultural reclaiming and the empowerment of women to lead confidently.” She stated. In discussing the challenges she faced while fulfilling her responsibilities, Robinson mentioned “staying focused and not getting distracted are key to overcoming and maintaining a balanced life that includes healthy boundaries.” Adding, “Everyone needs to implement a 'Self-love series' in their life where they intentionally do things that re-energize them and feed their passions.” When asked to give advice to young women who are entrepreneurs, Robinson has a straight answer. “Start your business Now!” “If you can dream it, and if you can

believe it, then you can achieve it! She continued “Look at every failure as an opportunity to learn and grow.” Another tip is to NEVER be afraid to ask for help. Don't be afraid to show weakness. Some of the most successful women I have met are the ones who always seem themselves as learning from a place of humility. The last tip is to learn to make what you feel is your weakness into your biggest strength. The role of mentors is also significant according to Robinson. She is of the opinion that “everyone should have multiple mentors to help with all facets of life.” Her own experience at a younger age and observing the opportunities and challenges of her classmates taught her valuable lessons in furthering empowerment of young women. Robinson gives back to her community and is a proud member of Torchbearers, an organization for young professionals that helps make an impact in the Akron Area. She is also a member of the Knowledgeable Network of Women, an Advisory Board Member for the Coleman Pregnancy Center and a member of the Kent Young Professionals. Robinson remains inspired by the quote from the famous poet, Maya Angelou “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” And she translates the quote into action! To learn more about the exciting programs at Limitless Ambition and be a part, please visit: www.limitlessambition.org

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COVER STORY - DR. JaNICE MARSHALL

Dr. JaNice Marshall,

pushing obstacles aside to fulfill her vision By: Marsha Walker Eastwood, BS.Ed, MHSVC PWM Contributing Writer

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r. JaNice Marshall is Cuyahoga Community College's Associate Vice President of Access and Community Engagement. The college commonly known as Tri-C is the largest community college in Ohio and has provided high quality, affordable education and programs to more than 900,000 members of our community for more than fifty years. It proudly serves more than 60,000 students in more than 140 certificate and degree programs each year. Tri-C offers so many special programs tailored to industry demands and provides something to almost everyone. Its' exemplary work throughout the community to connect students of all ages with relevant programs that match employer needs with a skilled work force, easily makes it a stand out among its' peers.

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Leading the charge is Dr. JaNice Marshall, who exerts extraordinary efforts to connect college and community and help more people throughout this region gain access, progress, and succeed in high-quality academic and technical training. Over a career span of more than 30 years, Dr. Marshall has created and managed innovative education programs and along the way received numerous awards and accolades. To gain insights into her journey and the work she does at Tri-C, Phenomenal Woman Magazine recently touched base with her.


The youngest of ten siblings, Michigan-born Marshall credits her parents in nurturing her to reach where she is today. When she talks about her parents, there is no missing the big smile that crosses her face as she discusses their educational backgrounds and life skills. Marshall describes her mother as a master organizer and perfect manager—necessary tools to manage a family of twelve. She describes her father as “the man who left too soon but not before giving me the gifts that bless me dailylove, patience, laughter and the unshakeable belief that each of us is “fearfully and wonderfully made” Psalm 139:14.”

college students, parents and employees. And this philosophy is part and parcel of her leadership position as Tri-C's Associate Vice President of Access and Community Engagement. Tri-C got its start in an old 19th- century brownstone building in downtown Cleveland. The site of the former Brownell School, and now listed in the National Registry of Historic Places was leased from The Cleveland Board of Education. On September 23, 1963, about 3,000 students were enrolled in Ohio's first and oldest community college. Since that humble beginning, the college has moved and grown with campuses now in downtown Cleveland, Parma, Highland Hills, Westlake, and a Hospitality Management Center at Public Square.

Her smile grows even larger when she discusses the love and support she has always had and continues to receive from her family. She is a woman of faith and believes in being guided by this higher power daily. Her faith is Through its' dynamic programs, Tri-C has touched demonstrated in her service to others—mentoring, countless lives in meaningful ways. More than 85% of the coaching or simply listening and offering encouragement. college's graduates continue to live and work in our region Marshall is also so proud of her two children, now young and the combined annual impact of Tri-C operations and adults who invest in her capacity Tri-C student/alumni increased to laugh aloud daily. She loves earnings contributes $1.3 billion the time she spends with them annually to Cuyahoga County. and is amazed by the wisdom of "K-12 scholars and their their youth. They remind her Tri-C's unparalleled results have daily of service to others and families must have early and not been left unnoticed by the notes their kindnesses shown to community as an overwhelming on-going connections to others in need. Their family majority of residents (68%) higher education, business mantra includes using laughter voted in support of Issue 61 last as good medicine! and community partners for November. A result of great

increased awareness about opportunities."

Marshall discussed how she future career knew in the third grade that her career path would be grounded in education far beyond the typical classroom. Her path to higher education included a Bachelor's Degree in Special Education from Michigan State and a couple of detours along the way. At 19, Marshall had her first hip replacement surgery. Later she was seriously injured in a car accident that dislocated the same hip and left her paralyzed from the waist down. The smile fades a little as she recalls how she was not expected to be able to walk again, a fate she refused to accept. Mindful of the quote “tough cookies don't crumble,” after several months of grueling rehabilitation, Marshall not only walked again but completed her Master of Arts in Rehabilitation Counseling. And her education mission was not yet complete. As Marshall continued her studies towards her doctorate in Education at The University of Texas at Austin, she worked with the Center for Community College Student Engagement including the Center's work on Men of Color. When asked why she pursued her doctorate studies, she said, “I was fortunate enough to be mentored by five other recipients of doctoral degrees, and more leaders need doctorates to prepare others for greater academic, workforce and community leadership opportunities.” She readily admitted that her higher education degrees were not just pieces of paper, but accomplishments she uses everyday. She sees her role as a leader and educator investing in the ongoing development of K-12 scholars,

confidence in Tri-C, the bill enables it to generate $228 million, much needed to meet infrastructure maintenance and upgrade needs to provide an even better service.

Tri-C's College Pathway Programs (CPP), a notable initiative led by Dr. Marshall is credited for its' contribution to an increase in high school and college completion rates in Northeast Ohio. These programs are mission-driven that provide high-quality credit and non-credit career and college readiness for youth and adults throughout Northeast Ohio.CPP enables a smooth transition into college for diverse student populations across the region, including both youth and adults. In her capacity, Marshall successfully leads 29 different programs under the CPP umbrella, ranging from community-based initiatives to intensive college immersion experiences. The College Pathway Programs all share common goals in;

Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ

increasing educational opportunities for youth assisting students in gaining access to higher education motivating students to participate in college courses while in high school and providing opportunities to foster student success through interventions such as assessment, coaching, and mentoring. Continued on next page... www.PHENOMENALWOMAN.me ▒ 19


Dr. Marshall, during interview with PWM’s Contributing writer Eastwood.

CPP forges strategic partnerships with area school districts to customize academic and support services to meet the needs of students from diverse backgrounds. The adult programs render community members access to resources that help them successfully complete academic and workforce programming. They primarily target those who may traditionally have had a difficult time accessing higher education. “More than 17,000 community members are reached through Tri-C's youth and early college programs each year.” In addition, about 5,000 adults are served as college students and others who need an innovative access point to academic and workforce programs. When the topic of challenges in education was broached, Dr. Marshall stressed the importance of academic and career counseling. The key to educational success, she says is to “make the counseling about the person,” she contintued “Don't just listen, but hear the resistance, and the fear and the desire for connectivity.” When Marshall discussed the power of connectivity, she was passionate about answering all questions raised by the small dreamers and the importance of connectivity on their level and creating a complete learning environment. Marshall explained, “K-12 scholars and their families must have early and on-going connections to higher education, business and community partners for increased awareness about future career opportunities.” 20 ▒ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

She was also quick to point out that those small dreamers are our next generation workforce of teachers, IT specialists, scientists, nurses, plumbers and engineers. When the topic became more specific regarding the challenges young boys and men of color face concerning higher education, Marshall stated, “to further understand increasing completion of high school and college for boys and men of color, alignment and the connection between and within our K-12 and the higher education system is critical.” More than ever, she says, “we must introduce and connect them to industry representatives for exposure and optimum dreaming about their future careers. They must be empowered to acquire and practice the tools necessary for success in school and life.” Providing access to engaged mentoring is critical to their success at every level based on her research and experience. JaNice Marshall wants her legacy as an educational leader to serve more Americans, especially those who are underserved to have access to effective and high-quality educational experiences. She believes this leads to the acquisition of skills and credentials needed for full participation in our economy. She works tirelessly for individual and entire families to experience success early, often and continuously. She believes that educational attainment and success is workforce readiness and victory, with her focus being in the enhancement of the school-to-career pathway.


Marshall, who embraces leadership development, disruptive and innovative thinking, has definite ideas of where she sees herself in five years. Without hesitation, she discussed her plans to expand the program's capacity to reach more K-12 scholars from three-years-old forward while also expanding access pipeline opportunities for nontraditional adults. Once again, connectivity was front and center with emphasis on full throttle engagement, but always mindful of keeping a level that is easily understood by current and potential students. Her plan includes reaching out to young boys and young men of color, and those most likely not to have the advantage of a male mentor; teaching everyone about their connectivity to life–who they are, where they are and preparing for their futures! Her five-year plan includes investing in helping new and young leaders, along with the creation of more programs, courses, and training that stresses the importance of academic, career and life planning. Living life with intention and purpose is core to Dr. Marshall's personal and professional vision statement. Central to this purpose is serving as a mentor to countless staff, students and community members. She revisits her personal vision statement and sets new goals annually—always working with accountability partners to assure goal progression and success. As a certified life coach and executive business coach, she works with her mentees to achieve higher levels of performance. She learned early in life the importance of continuous improvement, learning and deepening critical skills necessary for high performance. An avid reader, she knows “readers lead and leaders read,” a quote shared by her third-grade teacher. An education visionary, Marshall strongly believes that the quality of life is significantly enhanced through the value of education that takes a student beyond minimum wage and minimum lifestyle. Her holistic approach towards access to higher education through programs that help students meet core requirements for high school graduation, mentoring and preparing for the unknown is the cornerstone of attaining that higher degree. Dr. JaNice Marshall's contributions to the articulation of the right educational strategies and inculcate knowledge into the minds of thousands of community members have clearly transformed lives. This affectionate and phenomenal woman has set her goals high—making Tri-C the real pride of Ohio.

PHENOMENAL FACTS Dr. JaNice Marshall Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ

Bachelor of Arts, Special Education & Teaching - Michigan State University Master of Arts, Vocational Rehabilitation Counseling Michigan State University Doctor of Education, Higher Education/Higher Education Administration/Community College Leadership - The University of Texas, Austin Honorary Co-Chair - Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Scholarship Committee, Cleveland National Board Member; North Central Region Board Member National Council on Black American Affairs Board Member - Boys and Girls Clubs of Cleveland Institutional Representative, National Alliance of Community and Technical Colleges Recipient of fourteen Honors & Awards, some of which include: Ÿ Award of Appreciation, Summer of Innovation Feb. 2015, NASA Glenn Center Ÿ Award for Excellence June 2014, High Tech Academy Ÿ Cleveland Alumni Association, Support Award June 2014, Alpha Kappa Psi Ÿ Lakin Instititue for Mentored Leadership Oct. 2013, The President's Roundtable Ÿ President's Award Aug 2013, Cuyahoga Community College President's Office Ÿ Appreciation for Leadership Award June 2013, High Tech Academy

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Photo courtesy of Getty Images

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SMALL TOWN CRIME By R. Lee Gamble www.filmdiva3.com

Small Town Crime is the story of ex-cop Mike Kendall (John Hawkes) who discovers the body of a young woman and in the act of self-redemption becomes hell-bent on finding the killer. While his uncouth and quirky detective style help break open the case, his dogged determination unwittingly puts his sister (Octavia Spencer) and best friend (Anthony Anderson) in danger. If you enjoy a good mystery, you will love Small Town Crime. Directed by Eshom Nelms and Ian Nelms, this film is quirky and funny but it has very dark moments as well. Actor John Hawkes is terrific as the ex-cop determined to work his way back onto the force. So well written, you not only want to see the case solved, but you find yourself rooting for Kendall to come out on top. One of the most exciting twists in the film is the relationship between Kendall and his sister Kelly portrayed by Octavia Spencer. It is an essential element because his love for her fuels his determination to get it together. She is the one 28 â–’ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

person who can kick his ass when he needs it and he never shuts her out. The other thing that really gets Kendall going is the death of the young woman he discovers. He needed to know who would throw her away in the dessert like a piece of garbage. That need to know gives him something else to focus on other than his drinking and his failures and he becomes determined to find justice for her. Anthony Anderson does a great job in the role of Spencer's husband. He is always trying to encourage Kelly to try and do better. When Anderson's character is placed in danger because of the murder investigation, Kendall has to find a way to solve the case and save everyone's life. It is not often that you get an old fashion cop story. Everything has to be filled with all of these over the top choreographed fight scenes and car chases. Small Town Crime doesn't have all of that, but what it succeeds at is telling an interesting story and telling it well. Add to that a fantastic cast and this film does not disappoint. It was so good that I was sitting there at the end wondering will there be sequel. I need a sequel! Check it out!


DARKEST HOUR By R. Lee Gamble

F

rom the moment I saw the brilliant film Dunkirk, I knew I wanted to see Darkest Hour. It would be amazing to understand what British Prime Minister Winston Churchill was going through when his soldiers were stranded on the beaches of Dunkirk – dying. Director Joe Wright did a fantastic job of taking us inside the mind of Churchill as he had to decide whether or not to surrender to the German forces overtaking Europe or to fight. Darkest Hour is a phenomenal film. Gary Oldman has built a reputation over the years for some of the most brilliant performances including that of Sid Vicious in Sid and Nancy and Beethoven in Beloved. However, this will go down by far, as his most influential portrayal. Oldman embodies Churchill. It is not just in appearance but in his mannerisms and speech. The acting and direction are so extraordinary you will feel as if you have been transported back in time to witness the most intimate moments of those individuals who held the lives of millions in their hands. One of the things that added to the beauty and intensity of this film was the breathtaking cinematography. Wright's camera angles and imagery draws the viewer into the film. One of the best examples of that was when Churchill was sitting in a chair on the roof of a

building watching the planes fly overhead as the rain begins to fall. Another fabulous scene is when Churchill, caught in traffic on his way to parliament to give a speech about whether or not England should surrender to Germany, gets out of the car and goes to catch the subway. During the ride, he talks to the people. He asks them how they feel about the war and if they were tired of the fighting and if they wanted Parliament to give up. This scene is one of the most compelling moments in the film and it leads to Churchill giving a speech of a lifetime. Darkest Hour is a portrait of real leadership. In an age where a leader lying has become commonplace and many people celebrate ignorance, to watch a film depicting genius is a breath of fresh air. Churchill is a leader to be admired. Oldman deserves the Oscar nod he has received for this portrayal and it will not surprise me if he takes home the award. Everyone needs to see this film, if for no other reason than to remind us of the critical role a leader plays in all of our lives. With that in mind, we should think carefully about who we choose to make decisions on our behalf. Darkest Hour is definitely worth the price of the ticket!! www.PHENOMENALWOMAN.me â–’ 29


By R. Lee Gamble Film Diva www.filmdiva3.com Let me just start off by saying that Jack Black's performance in Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is one of the funniest I have seen in a long time. Don't get me wrong, Kevin Hart brings the humor but Black's performance as a teenage girl trapped in a middle-aged man's body is killer hysterical. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a fun and exciting follow-up to the original film. In this new movie, Jumanji has evolved into an old-fashioned video game that sucks four teenagers into its bizarre world. To return, they must play the game in the bodies of the characters they have chosen: Spencer/Dr. Smoldering Bravestone (Dwayne Johnson), Fridge/Moose Finbar (Kevin Hart), Bethany/Professor Shelley Osborn (Jack Black), and Martha/Ruby Roundhouse (Karen Gillan). They have to work together to save Jumanji from the evil villain Van Pelt (Bobby Cannavale). 30 â–’ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018

These four actors are hilarious as they embody the characteristics of the teenage characters portrayed by Alex Wolff, Ser'Darius Blaine, Madison Iseman, and Morgan Turner. Johnson as Spencer has no trouble convincing the audience that he is a shy geek who is afraid of just about everything. Hart is a mouthy bully who no longer has the body to back up his words. Gillan is a shy, nerdy girl who doesn't know how to handle being in a sexy body and Black as I said earlier, is the popular girl now trapped in a middle-aged man's body. Not only is this movie fun, but there is a compelling message to young people that they can be so much more than how they think others see them. A nod to Robin Williams' original character Alan Parrish just adds to the magic. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a fastpaced, exciting adventure that you do not want to miss. If you are looking for family-friendly fun over the holiday, this is the film to see!! It is definitely worth the price of the ticket!


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Drinks to Sip Your Way to Wellness Morning Jumpstart Spiced Cucumber & Apple Morning Boost

Evening Elixir

4 clementines, divided 3 cups coarsely chopped seedless cucumber, plus additional slices for garnish 2 cups coarsely chopped Granny Smith apple 1/4 teaspoon Red Pepper, Ground 1 cup ice cubes

Fizz ‘n Fruit Energizer 1/2 cup diced peeled Granny Smith apple, (1/2-inch dice) 1/4 cup sliced seedless cucumber, plus additional slices for garnish Ice cubes 1 cup sparkling clementine juice

Ginger, Turmeric & Beet Sipping Elixir 1 cup fruit juice, such as passion fruit or mango 1/3 cup unfiltered cider vinegar 1/3 cup beet juice 4 hibiscus tea bags 2 tablespoons Ginger, Ground 1/2 teaspoon Organic Cardamom, Ground 1/4 teaspoon Ground Turmeric

Pineapple Turmeric Mocktail with Muddled Dandelion Greens 2 cups fresh pineapple chunks 2 tablespoons Organic Ginger, Crystallized 1/4 teaspoon Ground Turmeric 8 leaves fresh dandelion greens, well washed, trimmed and torn into 1-inch pieces 2 cups pink grapefruit soda Crushed ice For more recipes like these visit... McCormick.com 34 â–’ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018


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GOING THE DISTANCE

FOR OUR

COMMUNITIES. At Dominion East Ohio, going the distance for our customers means more than just delivering safe, affordable natural gas. It means being a positive force in the communities we serve. Our EnergyShareÂŽ program has raised $6.8 million and helped more than 70,000 people in Ohio alone. These resources, combined with more than 6,300 volunteer hours from our employees, have benefited organizations as diverse as the American Red Cross, the Boy Scouts of America and the Ohio & Erie Canalway Coalition.

Profile for Phenomenal Woman Magazine

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