Prominence Magazine

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It’s more than a way of living; it’s a state of mind.






People you need to know




Become… ***PLACE AD HERE.

Inspired & Empowered


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THE 411 15 Denzel Washington’s IT Factor is contagious as the number one man in Hollywood has that longevity that only some could only dream of. 17 The Reality of it All is that reality TV is taking over the networks and providing the drama to go along with it. We spotlight some of the popular shows and why they appeal to so many. 20 Off the Shelf books are worthy of adding to your list of must reads. Who’s Vagina is it Anyway, Rhythm without Blues, The Substance of Hope, and Tumbling are our picks for this summer and fall. 21 Giving it All She’s Got, Macy Gray has made her much anticipated come back and we‘re all ears and waiting for more. FOR HIM/HER 23 The Basics: Are necessities that help us all stay fly, polished, and on top of things. We‘ve went in search of beauty and grooming products that can keep us on top of our game.

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27 Fashion in the City: All work and no play can keep us from stylin and profiling, but this is why we‘ve found simple yet stylish look for both work and play. FEATURES 31 Power Playas Those who have the guts and know how to follow their dreams and make it happen have been termed in our eyes Power Playas. Dr. Syleecia Johnson, the visionaries of Blame it on Hip Hop, powerhouse Dottery Washington, matchmaker, Paul Carrick Brunson, and the diversity of Dwight Ali Williams and Shawn Luckey shows us how it‘s done and how to play the game on our own terms. 43 Notorious Elevation Actor Dennis LA White is creatively paving his way in Hollywood. The Notorious film star sat down with us to give us the 411 on his career and where he is headed next. 44 Who’s Vagina is it Anyway Our Editor-In-Chief shares with us an excerpt of her latest release, Who’s Vagina is it Anyway? Yours or Mine? 46 Why You Need a Spending Plan Financial Expert, Shay Oliveria shares with us why a spending plan is necessary in today‘s economic times. 48 My Poeticwisdom The poetic wisdom of poet, Katherine Rodriguez will empower you to step forward and your purpose. l FALL 2010 I 4

It’s more than a way of living; it’s a state of mind.


Glenys C. Colclough EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Sandy Daley CREATIVE DIRECTOR Clarice Wright




Shay Olivarria Sandy Daley Shawn Luckey Katherine Rodriguez INQUIRIES

General: Advertising: Story Ideas: Feedback: Paul Carrick Brunson The Modern Day Match Maker

PROMINENCE Magazine is published bi-monthly by Evolve Media. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced, stored in any kind of retrieval system, transmitted in any form or by any means without prior written permission of the publisher.

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Publisher’s Letter …………

A Journey worth the Trip After what seemed like a year in labor, I finally gave birth. Of course we all know that the normal time for a mother to deliver her child can be as long as forty-eight hours, if not longer in some cases. But for me, this process was a little different. It was tiring and often times so overwhelming that I wanted to give up and not go through the process of labor and delivery altogether. But, I also knew that I was chosen. I was chosen to bring something special to life and no matter how tired I was of the birthing process; I knew I needed to continue the journey of bringing what I conceived to life. I could not give up; not on myself or on the vision of bringing a dream to life. That dream is Prominence Magazine. A dream that I have held on to as a little girl; as I flipped through the pages of Essence Magazine. Not realizing half the battle at that time, I am nowhere close to where I want Prominence Magazine to be, but I am surely not at the beginning stages either. No matter how many times I have wanted to throw in the towel, I can stand proud and say this journey was definitely worth the trip. On the following pages of this premier issue, you will come to know nine power playas who in their own right are paving the way. Taking into their own hands their fate and creating the lives they desire and deserve. Their undying commitment to their passion has fueled my desire and I hope it will for you as well. You will also learn how to create a spending plan that can help you save for that rainy day. We all know in these tough economic times that having an umbrella to stand under is the best way to stay shielded from the rain.

I was also fortunate enough to have a one on one conversation with Notorious film star, Dennis LA White, about his career in Hollywood, what’s next for him and his ultimate goal for his future. The conversation was enlightening, engaging, and revealing. While this is the premier digital issue for Prominence Magazine, the print version will soon be in your hands with the January issue of 2011. When I dream, I dream big and therefore I do not stop until my dreams are fully realized; which is probably why I could not give up on the commitment I made to myself in bringing Prominence Magazine to life. If I had given up, I would not have only shortchanged myself, but God as well, for he knows my ability and trusted me by placing this seed; a dream I held on to as a little girl within me to birth. This is only the beginning. I invite you to take this journey with me. Enjoy the issue,

Glenys l FALL 2010 I 6

PROMINENCE a : readily noticeable : CONSPICUOUS b : widely and popularly known : LEADING

Contributors Sandy Daley is an actress, radio and TV personality, and author. She lives for the creative process and has most recently released her first novel, Who’s Vagina is it Really? Her next project, Chocolate Dolls is a weekly television series that Sandy is currently writing, is due out the end of 2010. She will serve as the executive producer and writer.

Shay Olivarria is a motivational speaker, financial literacy coach, and author of 10 Things College Students Need to Know About Money and Money Matters: The Get It Done in 1 Minute Workbook. As an ambassador for financial freedom, Shay travels all over the country to educate people on responsible financial decisions.

Shawn Luckey is Diversity Players of Harlem's artistic director, and he actively writes, directs, and produces plays and screenplays. As a performer, he has appeared in a number of commercials, plays and movies. His theatrical credits include: Charles Fuller's A Soldier's Play; Pearl Cleage's Blues for an Alabama Sky; and Craig Lucas' Prelude to a Kiss. Shawn’s film credits include Spike Lee’s Miracle at St. Anna, and the much anticipated Tyler Perry release For Colored Girls.

Katherine Rodriguez found a way to escape her immediate surroundings in New York through the art of writing. Her ambition to write poetry was developed more so as a form of expression and to achieve a sense of freedom through written word. More often than not, writing became a driving force for her motivation and self-empowerment. Today she shares her talents to deliver a message of power and hope to those who struggle and at times lack the faith to overcome. l FALL 2010 I 8

Picture This

Vision brought to life in pictures

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Your Ad Here

Advertise with Prominence Magazine and reach your target market. ::

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What’s Hot – Tech Gadgets

iPad Is the Apple iPad the greatest thing since sliced bread? Well, we seem to think so. With thousands of apps, a multi-touch screen, vibrant color, and simplicity all in one cool, slick design; how could one not become addicted to what it has to offer? Apple is leading the pack in technology and will continue to set the standard for providing consumers with what they need to stay informed, entertained, and up on the latest. One should not wonder what they will come up with next; for we all know it will something many will desire and put to the test.

Zune Zune is the premium digital experience that gives you access to the latest in entertainment and technology, allowing you to enjoy, connect, and discover content in an entirely different way; the way you like it. When the mood hits, you can browse, stream, buy, and play all the music, HD videos, podcasts, games, and much more at the touch of the screen. Gain the freedom to enjoy your entertainment; the way you want to, on your terms.

Kindle Reading just became trendy with the Amazon Kindle. Amazon has given the avid book reader something to talk to about. The Kindle gives you all you could ever need when it comes to reading your favorite titles, all on one device. How genius is that? Offering over 600,000 titles, the Kindle store has the largest selection of the books, including New York Times® Best Sellers and new releases from $9.99. There is no other way to take reading the next level than with a Kindle by your side. l FALL 2010 I 12

Exploring all opportunities

Charleston, SC Loving the Carolinas Charleston, SC is known as one of the most popular southern destinations in the country. A perfect gem nestled within in the south is one of the most romantic cities one will ever visit. Rich in history and pride, Charleston, SC offers a travel destination that can fulfill expectations to overflowing. The districts of the city contain a wide variety of interesting locations and historical landmarks. While in Charleston you can expect to find a rich combination of hospitality and charm resonant of the "Old South." Whether it is the historic houses, churches, or attractions of the Downtown and Historic Districts, the fine cuisine found in the Mount Pleasant District, or any of the alluring landmarks found in this city, expect to be entranced by the romanticism of this southern city. Charleston is a place of much historical significance as it was a major landmark during colonial times. The Historic District is the oldest part of town and a lot of the buildings and houses have been preserved, sparking much architectural interest. If you have ever wanted to make Charleston a travel destination, it will surely be one of the best vacations you have ever experienced. Make Charleston, SC your next get away and watch new adventures unfold.

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Charleston Fun Facts 1.) Charleston boasts the first public college, museum and playhouse in the United States. 2.) George Gershwin composed his well known opera Porgy and Bess while living on Folly Beach, South Carolina. Porgy and Bess are buried in the James Island Presbyterian Church graveyard. 3.) The first game of golf played in the United States took place in Charleston, South Carolina.


Denzel Washington The IT Factor

The 411


Denzel Washington‘s




Carbon Copy – 1981 A Soldier’s Story – 1984 Power – 1986 Cry Freedom – 1987 For Queen and Country – 1988 The Mighty Quinn – 1989 Glory – 1989 Heart Condition – 1990 Mo’ Better Blues – 1990 Mississippi Masala – 1991 Richochet – 1991 Malcolm X 1992 The Pelican Brief – 1993 Much Ado About Nothing - 1993


enzel Washington has it. That it factor that is so compelling in nature, that thousands across the globe are drawn to the movie theaters to see him in action. Men want to be like him, women want to be with him; there is something about him that has you curious and maybe even daydreaming about his next move. The A list actor, producer and director, continues to add to his list of credible mentions as this summer, he along with Viola Davis, appeared on Broadway in August Wilson's play, Fences. With each show nearing sold out capacity, it is very clear that Denzel Washington has that it factor that keeps fans coming back for more.

Philadelphia – 1993 Crimson Tide – 1995 Virtuosity – 1995 Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream – 1995 Devil in a Blue Dress – 1995 Courage Under Fire – 1996

His start in film and television started like any other actor seeking that big break, but it wasn‘t until his role in the hospital drama, St. Elsewhere, that his light in Hollywood began to shine and pave the way. We could not help, but take a look back at the career of one of Hollywood‘s most recognized faces and chronicle a career that will pave the way for many to follow. What's next for Mr. Washington, only time will tell, but here is a look back at his extraordinary career in film to keep us in awe of a talent that is worthy. May he continue to follow the path that he was destined to travel and provide us with more of that IT factor.

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The Preacher’s Wife – 1996 Fallen – 1998 He Got Game – 1998 The Siege – 1998 The Bone Collector – 1999 The Hurricane – 1999 Remember the Titans – 2000 Training Day – 2001 John Q – 2002 Antwone Fisher – 2002 Out of Time – 2003 Man on Fire – 2004 The Manchurian Candidate – 2004 Inside Man – 2006 Déjà vu – 2006 American Gangster – 2007

The Great Debaters – 2007 The Taking of Pelham 123 – 2009 The Book of Eli – 2010



une 20, 2010 New York, NY – In retrospect, I must say that watching Fences on Broadway was like staring myself in the mirror as I began to evaluate my relationship with my own father. From the First Act, Denzel Washington grips the role of Troy Maxson with a dose of that ―Denzel‖ flavor; but never losing sight of delivering to audiences the flawed nature of Troy Maxson. On one hand, Troy is a loving husband and provider for his family. Yet, he‘s the loose thread strand that unravels his family structure because of his selfishness towards his wife Viola Davis‘ Rose; and transparent disconnect with his son, Chris Chalk‘s Cory and, older son Hornsby‘s Lyons. By the Second Act, the baton was handed to Viola Davis, as she took the loose thread strands and made blanket to protect what was left of a decaying family structure. Davis‘ performance was riveting at best and made audiences crave for more as she brought the family to resolve at curtain. The rest of the cast was rounded out by talented veteran actors Mykelti Williamson and Stephen McKinley Henderson, also alternating performances by child actors Eden Duncan-

Smith and SaCha Stewart-Coleman. Collectively, the cast made it apparent why Fences received this year‘s Tony Award for Best Play Revival. This year‘s newly Tony Award winners Davis and Washington both gave everything they had to bring ―truth and honor‖ to the roles that late playwright, August Wilson so eloquently penned. At press time, Fences on Broadway tickets were being sold at Cort Theater until July 11, 2010.

Photo by Joan Marcus Russell Hornsby (Far l.) explains to his father, Washington’s Troy Maxson (l.), his life shortcomings as Henderson’s Bono and Davis’s Rose look on intently. l FALL 2010 I 16


TV: The Reality of it All The emergence of reality TV started in 1992, with MTV setting up seven twenty-some things in a trendy New York City apartment with cameras to follow them and watch their every move. That widely popular reality show, The Real World New York set the stage and foundation for many reality based television shows to follow. Since that time, over eighteen years ago, reality TV has taken the networks by storm. If you are addicted to reality TV, here are a few our favorite picks.

The Real House Wives of Atlanta We have to give it to these Georgia Peaches, they know how to keep it real by giving thousands of fans exactly what they want; a weekly dose of drama. Surely drama never looked so good as these five fashionable, savvy and tell it like it is socialites turn Atlanta on its head and Bravo heading straight to the bank.

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Fantasia for Real American Idol winner, Fantasia allows us to have a front row seat to her life as cameras show her life as Fantasia the artist and Fantasia the mother, daughter, sister and provider for her family. Fantasia has shown a side of herself that is not often viewed behind the cameras. She is caring, loving and supportive as she strives to pull her family together and maintain her singing career.

Kimora Life In The Fab Lane Kimora Lee Simmons in all her fabulocity, is back on the Style Network handling business like none other. With the new addition to her family, husband Dijmon and son Kenzo, Kimora proves women can have it all.

Celebrity Fit Club Heading towards its eighth season, Celebrity Fit Club shows us that celebrities have weight issue too and have committed themselves to shedding the weight in front of the camera. What we like about Celebrity Fit Club has nothing to do with Dr. Ean Smith or Harvey‘s drill sergeant demeanor; it‘s the inspiration CFC is giving others to take control of their lives and weight.

Keeping Up With The Kardashians Like them or not, you have to give it to them. The Kardashians/Jener bunch knows how to keep us entertained. With their over the top moments, jet-setting and family bonding moments Keeping up with the Kardashians on the E! Network will have you wanting to keep up with what‘s next. l FALL 2010 I 18

Notorious Elevation A Conversation with Dennis LA White

Would like to Congratulate the Cast & Crew of Suzette Azariah Gunn’s

Spare Change For admittance into HBO’s 11th Annual NY International Latino Film Festival

The 411


Off The Shelf

Rhythm Without Blues Dr. Syleecia Thompson Most of us only hear about the success stories of those who’ve been fortunate to have made it. But what did these artists have to go through in order to reach fame and fortune? This tell-all book exposes the dark side of the R&B music industry; the greed, manipulation and deceit. Everything comes to light in this book and it also offers hope and sensible solutions to picking up the pieces and saving the soul of R&B.

Tumbling Diane Mckinney-Whetstone

The Substance of Hope William Jelani Cobb The Substance of Hope, a deeply insightful, paradigm-shifting examination of a new generation of voters that has not been shaped by the raw memory of Jim Crow and has a different range of imperatives. Cobb sees Obama's ascendancy as "a reality that has been taking shape in tiny increments for the past four decades." Elegantly written and powerfully argued, The Substance of Hope challenges conventional wisdom as it offers original insight into America's future.

Who’s Vagina Is It Really? Sandy Daley One of the most prolific and modern-day writers, Sandy Daley has put forward some solutions in Whose Vagina is it really? The writer urges women to “Love yourself before anyone else; but love him wholeheartedly if you have chosen him. If you want him and he is worth it and he is the One then love him the right way.”

Sunday morning in South Philly, according to McKinney-Whetstone, is "like buttermilk," with "a quiet smoothness to it." The same can be said of this remarkable novel; a gentle portrait of an African American community in South Philadelphia in the 1940s and '50s, the story probes beneath its residents' lives to tell a powerful tale of damage and healing. Noon is a Florida preacher's daughter too scarred from a secret childhood incident to let a man touch her; her husband, Herbie, is a redcap who met her when he was a hepcat jazz drummer touring with fiery singer Ethel. When newborn Fannie and, five years later, Ethel's five-year-old orphan niece, Liz, are abandoned on Noon and Herbie's doorstep, the embrace of community allows the creation of a family. This novel first printed in 1996 is coming back to life with a second edition. Pick up your copy and become apart of an era and family you will very much feel apart of. l FALL 2010 I 20


Macy Gray Giving it All She’s Got After a three year hiatus, Macy Gray is back with her highly anticipated album, The Sellout. Featuring 12 new songs, which were co-written and executive produced by none other than Gray herself. Collaborations with Bobby Brown, The Bodyrockers' Kaz James and Slash, Duff McKagan and Matt Sorum formerly of Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver, all make her come back worthwhile. From the opening cords on the first single, the irresistibly "Beauty In The World", it is clear that The Sellout is the work of an artist who has reconnected with the essence of her creative gifts after a long, soul-numbing journey through the music biz's starmaking machinery. Filled with sparkling melodies and personal lyrical insights, The Sellout is an authentic and confidently delivered statement from one of contemporary music's most skillful and creative voices. Highlights throughout the album are rich and plentiful including the alluring, soul-pop groove of "Lately", "That Man" a mouth-watering slice of Ting Ting's inflected 80's new-wave, the Joan Jett meets T- Rex thump and screaming Slash guitar of "Kissed It", and the beguiling, "Still Hurts", a vulnerable, emotion filled keep-sake ballad. Gray has kept her appeal and distinctive voice intact; a gift that sets her apart from all the rest. She has given it all she’s got and we gladly accept.

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He/She it’s not complicated

The Basics

Keeping it simple with what you need to stay fly, polished and on point.

He/She the basics

John Varvatos Vintage $58.00 Bobbi Brown beach Body Scrub $35.00 Kenzo Flower $92.00 Jack Black Clean Formula Face Bar & Shave Soap $14.00

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Fresh Brown Sugar Body Polish $65.00 Peter Thomas Roth Complexion Correction Pads $36.00 Liquid Metal $26.00 Tweezerman Animal Print Slant Tweezers $25.00 l FALL 2010 I 24

FASHION IN THE CITY Steppin Out in Style

All Work‌


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& A lot of Play.

Casual Classy Let your imagine lead you. l FALL 2010 I 28

Stylin &…




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Dr. Syleecia Thompson


hat more can a woman do once she has done about everything within her field of work? Anything, according to Dr. Syleecia Thompson. With three degrees, a BS in Economics, MBA and a Doctorate in Business; Dr. Thompson is inspired and driven by the belief that anything is possible if you work hard and think big. Based on these credentials and a ‗multi-task with a multi-purpose‘ mentality, Dr. Thompson set out to seek her greatest passion: teaching. She has taught everything from Algebra, Public Relations, and Leadership; all at college level. As the daughter of legendary soul singer Syl Johnson and older sister of Grammy-nominated R&B singer Syleena Johnson, it was natural for Dr. Thompson to incorporate her teaching and leadership skills into music. Dr. Thompson gained a deep passion for R&B music watching her father and sister record, but became disturbed by the lack of respect for the genre and artists who contribute great music to the art form. Driven by passion and fueled with a go-getter attitude, this scholar decided to seek out the soul of a fading genre by authoring Rhythm Without Blues. As a teacher, manager, president, and author Dr. Thompson shows no signs of slowing down. Dr. Thompson recently wrote for the Encyclopedia of African-American Music soon to be published under Greenwood Press. Her entry focused on black music in Chicago from 1942 through today and covered several genres of music. She even looks forward to publishing another booked titled The Leader Who Follows: Successful Strategies for Leading in Any Capacity. Respectfully, Dr. Thompson has proven she can apply herself to any situation with precision and win at all costs. l FALL 2010 I 33


Blame T

it on Hip Hop

o love Hip-Hop culture is to constantly be playing defense. From right-wing radio hosts to politicians in both parties, from hard-core white racists to leaders within communities-of-color, from academia, the media and beyond—Hip-Hop is never lacking in both criticisms and critics.

While Hip-Hop clothing lines are a dime a dozen these days, BIOHH continues to shine because, aside from making fresh clothes, the brand is an example of Hip-Hop entrepreneurs who are driven by something much more than pure capitalism, they are about action.

And while some of that criticism is indeed valid— and necessary—it can be exhausting for Hip-Hop heads to have to defend the walls of our culture at all hours. We can point out the positive, sociallyconscious Hip-Hop artists, we can illustrate the impact that Hip-Hop arts programs have made in communities across the world, and we can talk endlessly about the culture‘s potential for positive change, but it never seems to be good enough.

These five friends from Minneapolis are about making an explicit, productive and powerful impact through sparking dialogue, putting our money where our mouths are, and making it okay to look good while feeling good. Not unlike clothing, social consciousness and Hip-Hop activism come in many different styles; BIOHH is one that people must take note of.

While BIOHH creates clothing designs that are capable of sparking discussion in and of themselves, they are not content at stopping there. By speaking to students about the power of entrepreneurialism, talking to teachers and parents about the positive aspects of Hip-Hop culture and even donating a percentage of their net profits to active students, they have developed a business that is generating a tremendous buzz in Hip-Hop circles for all the right reasons.

From left to right; James Cheatham, Johari Moten, Richard Strong, Marcus Manning l FALL 2010 I 35

Dottery Washington

A Woman Who Dares to Dream


or a woman who dares to dream in tough economic times, the odds can be stacked against her. But for Dottery Washington, going against those odds is exactly what she needed to keep her dream alive and her passion for bringing it to life on fire. Taking her vision; one that would scare many from attempting it and stepping out on faith has proven to her that anything you put your mind to you can achieve. Based in Waldorf, MD, Washington‘s vision is the Charles County SportPlex and Learning Center. A 5.6 million dollar facility offering a first-class fitness and lifestyle center, two full-size basketball courts, a food and beverage/lounge area, a learning center, teen center, competition and leisure swimming pool, tennis court, racquetball, outdoor track, football, baseball, soccer field, and a host of other amenities. The facility is bound to enhance the quality of life, promote health, and be an exceptional place for all ages. Although still in the planning stages, Washington‘s vision is coming to life; with several political and community leaders rallying behind her. Having a love and strong desire to see her community flourish and offer a place where all can come to maintain their health, learn and grow; Washington is paving a way for many who dare to dream, to do something about it. She is surely an example of what stepping out on faith looks like and we‘re proud to say she is surely a Power Playa. l FALL 2010 I 37

Paul Carrick Brunson

The Modern Day Matchmaker


nown as the modern-day ―Hitch‖, for the past 10 years, Paul Carrick Brunson has played matchmaker and relationship coach to various friends and family members. After numerous successes in helping those close to him find happy and long lasting relationships, he decided to turn his hobby into a full-fledged business, OneDegreefrom.Me. Paul‘s unparalleled ability for successful matchmaking and coaching comes from really knowing and understanding his clients and their needs. Like his clients, he is cultured, well-educated, and trained. He holds a graduate degree from a top business school and is a certified life coach. His professional career started as an investment banker and most recently included a senior position with top international investment firm. He is also a philanthropist who co-founded and chairs a foundation called the L10 Project, an organization that leads school rebuilding and revitalization projects in the U.S. and Caribbean. Paul believes that happy relationships are the foundation of a well-functioning society and has a personal desire to reverse some of the dismal marriage statistics among many communities. OneDegreeFrom.Me has been featured in Redbook Magazine, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Complete Woman Magazine, Clutch Magazine, on ABC News and in popular blogs including The Black Snob, Very Smart Brothas and Naked With Socks On. Paul also developed the popular series "The Modern Day Matchmaker" on YouTube as well as "The Modern Day Matchmaker LIVE: Real Relationship Talk" tour. Unlike many other relationship coaches and matchmakers who are single or ―serial spouses‖, Paul has been happily married to his beautiful wife, Jill, for eight years. Not only does his knowledge of what it takes to have a happy marriage influence his matchmaking ability, but he also leverages his professional network to enhance the matches of his clients. l FALL 2010 I 39

Shawn Luckey & Dwight Ali Williams

Dynamic Duo of Diversified Drama


mong the hordes of theater companies that call New York City home, lies an organization that is on pace to becoming a staple in the global arts community. The organization, Diversity Players of Harlem, consists of producing co-founders Shawn Luckey and Dwight Ali Williams. This odd pairing of sorts has successfully created a winning formula for dozens of productions. Williams, a former child actor detoured into corporate America, however; he left Los Angeles for New York City to pursue his passion for the stage. In 2005, after a chance meeting with former law school student Shawn Luckey, Williams became one-third of a business venture that resulted in Luckey directing the company‘s first production. After a former business partner parted ways, Luckey and Williams made DPOH Entertainment (the company‘s moniker) an official general partnership. In five years, the dynamic duo has produced stage plays, music revues, industry seminars and networking events, and more recently, short films. Many of their stage productions have run the full gamut from classic plays like Charles Fuller‘s A Soldier Play and Harold Pinter‘s The Birthday Party to an Off-Broadway stage production of Marq Overton‘s Die Laughing, an original one-man dramatic play about a comedian‘s bout with breast cancer. According to the theater company‘s mission statement, the pair plans to collaborate with more artists and entertainment professionals to meet their objective of creating more lucrative opportunities for children and non-traditional artist. At press time, Diversity Players of Harlem‘s 2010-11 theater season was slated to open with Love’s Gonna Get Ya! Tickets are being sold for this production and the season at with special offers.

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Notorious Elevation A Conversation with Dennis LA White BY GLENYS COLCLOUGH


budding star in the mist of experiencing his career in full bloom, Dennis LA White is on the verge of exploring new territory that is bound to move him to another level in Hollywood; a level that many seek to explore, but never gain the opportunity to have. On a recent trip to New York, Dennis interviewed with Prominence Magazine to talk about his career and what‘s next on his journey of breaking barriers and staking his claim. Unless you have held a conversation with Dennis, you will never know how polite and well spoken he really is. Seeing him on the screen, in a variety of roles, could never compare or add up to whom he really is; a man with a desire for living what he is passionate for, and that is using the talents he‘s been blessed with to pave the way for those who come after him to follow. When one thinks of Dennis LA White, they may most recently remember him from his role as Diamond ‗D-Rock‘ Butler in the 2009 biopic Notorious. But, this North Carolina native has formulated a career path that will place him among the rising stars in the industry. Building a foundation to leave his legacy upon, Dennis‘ vision for where he ultimately wants to take his

career leads him to producing and directing. His quest is to bring forth more classic films under his production company, Riot Gear Entertainment. Building a foundation to leave his legacy upon, Dennis‘ vision for where he ultimately wants to take his career leads him to producing and directing. His quest is to bring forth more classic films under his production company, Riot Gear Entertainment. When asked what advice he could give to aspiring actors, he says with an assurance of where he‘s come from, ―seek opportunities to build your body of work, surround yourself with other actors, and use the three P‘s; prayer, perseverance, and persistence.‖ By the end of our conversation, I was not only impressed, but inspired by his determination. Dennis‘s upcoming projects include the film, Changing the Game and the play, Die Laughing. One can only hold on to hope for having a career in Hollywood, and seeing evident proof in White‘s career proves it can happen for anyone at anytime. l FALL 2010 I 43

Who‘s Vagina is it Anyway? Yours or Mine? BY SANDY DALEY


s he serious? Did he really just ask me, ―Whose is it baby?‖ Tell me that it is mine! After all this time of not hearing from him? Obviously I am going to tell him that the vagina belongs to him at this moment in time. I was certainly not going to ruin a good sex session! With this question, which has been directed to me on numerous occasions, it then got me thinking; if I was such a dynamite chick, according to this lover on the phone, why am I still single? ―Then again, did I really even want a man? I certainly did not need one! To be quite honest, I have never met a man that has done anything for me that I cannot do for myself. Hence, ―Whose vagina is it really?‖ was born, and have created nothing less than a phenomena. From gut busting laughter, to outright shock at the title, this little book of mine has stirred up strong feelings amongst both sexes. Perfect! I am the king of the World! Was I too independent? Too strong-willed? Too stubborn? Why am I still single and I ―don‘t have a tree in my face,‖ as we say. ―Did I want too much? No, I did not,‖ I decided. But I, like most women, want more out of life than just the occasional, ―Whose is it baby?‖ I would sometimes answer with a smart- assed comment, and ladies, try this as well, ―Yours baby, if you pay the light bill, the mortgage, the car note and buy some groceries. Now do you still want it?‖ See what his response is and that will tell you what he really wants from you.

―If this book is anything like your articles, then I need to pre-order mine right now! Its right?‖ she queried. ―Yes, Janice, order right now,‖ I laughed out loud, realizing that I had some neurotic, but very supportive girlfriends. Use what you have to get what you want out of life; of course without losing your self-respect and of maintaining control of your own life, is what I encourage in this book. The funny thing though, is that we all have the power but unfortunately, do not know how to use it wisely. ―If only you ladies knew how simple men are,‖ said a male friend of mine recently. We are not as complicated as women,‖ he went on to say. All you have to do is rub our heads and you get all that you want.‖ ―Which head was he referring to though?‖ was my inner question as I wiggled my nose like Sabrina the teenage witch. ―Whose Vagina is it really? asks the question but it is up to the readers to answer for themselves. The best answer, in my opinion that I ever received from a male friend of mine is, ―Yours of course Sandy, but mine to play with if you let me!‖ After a gut busting laugh and of course almost choking on the gum that I had in my mouth, I fully agreed with his statement. Needless to say, I still converse regularly with this recognizes that I am in charge and he really is just a squirrel trying to get a nut in my world! Or am I the squirrel trying to get his to his nuts? Now that is the million dollar question!

Walking the streets these days is also a challenge, as my male friends and associates only ask me one thing on the very first sight of seeing me. ―So Sandy, a fi mi or what?‖ At least the men are talking right? If I have accomplished getting a dialogue started between men and women, then this book will serve its purpose, as we rarely communicate. ―This is not your typical sappy self help book for women, where you are constantly looking for a Mr. Right,‖ I say to my friends, while they lovingly ask me every day about its release. ―I know that,‖ said my girlfriend Janice. l FALL 2010 l 45

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Why You Need a $pending Plan BY SHAY OLIVERIA


ave you ever pulled a $20 out of the ATM and two hours later you have no idea how you spent the money? That‘s why you need a spending plan. Most of us spend small amounts of money every day on things that we don‘t even remember buying. That $1 soda at work takes up $240 a year. How many times have you walked into a store to grab 1 thing and come out with way more than just 1 thing? All this extra spending on small things is part of the reason you may be in debt. Having a spending plan is a way to help you recognize what you‘ve been spending your money on and what changes you may want to make. It works like this: always be an emergency, you‘ll be ready. 1) Go through your bank statements and credit card statements. Put the money you spent in categories so you can see what you spent your money on. I use a software program because it‘s easier than writing everything down. Notice all the money that you spent on non-essential items. 2) Don‘t freak out when you see how much money you waste every month. 3) Make a list of your fixed expenses; the bills that you have to pay every month. For example, your rent/mortgage, lights, water, gas, car insurance, credit cards, etc. 4) Make a list of your variable expenses; the bills that you have to pay sometimes. For example, your yearly payment for your magazine subscriptions, your quarterly tax payments if you‘re self employed, etc. 5) Make a line on your list that says, ―me‖. You are going to start paying yourself every month just like you pay everyone else. Creating, or adding to, an emergency fund is one of the main reasons you need a spending plan. Take all that money you‘ve been wasting and put it into an account that you can use when you‘re in a jam. I suggest trying to build up 6 – 12 month‘s worth of income. When an emergency comes, and there will

6) Make a line that says, ―retirement‖. I don‘t care if you haven‘t even opened a retirement account and you can only put $5 in it. You‘re going to start putting money aside for your old age. As your account swells with cash you can take time to think about where you‘d like to invest it. The first step is to start. The more you put away now, the less you‘ll have to worry later. Compound interest will make a huge difference in your retirement lifestyle. 7) Whatever money you have left, go wild! You know what your fixed expenses will cost every month, what your upcoming variable expenses will be, you‘ve put money away for your emergency fund, and you‘re started contributing to your retirement account. The money left over is called your ―discretionary income‖. If you find that you don‘t have enough income to cover all your expenses listed on your spending plan, then you have two choices. You‘re going to have to increase your income or reduce your expenses and no, cutting out saving for your emergency fund and/or your retirement fund are not options. You are responsible for your life. You have the power to be financially stable, or not, by making smart choices…… and that‘s why you need a spending plan. l FALL 2010 l 47

The first print issue of Prominence Magazine will be with the January 2011 issue. Join our mailing list to stay current with what’s happening in our world

My Poeticwisdom By Katherine Rodriguez I had to go through it I had to loose it in order to find it I had to fall to learn how to stand I had to cry to learn the desire to laugh I had to learn how to be a woman in order to appreciate a man I had to humble myself to be exalted I had to break down to figure out that something was wrong I had to be in need to learn how to ask for help I had to be weak to then be strong I had to feel dumb in order to realize that there was more to learn I had to feel defeated in order to learn that I was fighting a war I had to loose the game to realize that I had to make more of an effort to score I had to confront myself to take focus off of others I had to stop laboring to understand how to work effectively I had to struggle to appreciate the gain I had to do wrong to learn how to do correctly I had to go through some tests to have a testimony I had to have trials to be triumphant I had to fall to be in a position to pray I had to feel like I had nothing to motivate myself to get something I had to suffer consequences to learn not to do it again I had to be ignored to learn how to give I had to get tired of being tired I had to die to my flesh in order to live Katherine RodriguezŠ l FALL 2010 l 48

In the End Living On Purpose BY KIMBERLY NICHOLS


iving life on purpose; this has been sitting in my heart and mind a great deal lately. I for one am grateful, I‘ve taken steps of faith and watched God do some great things because of my faith action, one of which was the establishment of the nonprofit I co-founded with my best girlfriend, Theda Rose. Theda and I both have a passion for young women and out of mere conversation and a resonating of hearts we took a step of faith and established S.A.V.Y-Successful and Victorious Youth, Inc., a national nonprofit whose mission is to inspire girls to reach their full potential and motivate them towards excellence, I have always tried to live a purpose driven life, reflecting on the specific gifts, talents and abilities that have been deposited in me and then aligning vocational and even entrepreneur aspirations with those gifts and passions in mind. So Theda and I start our nonprofit and we have touched the lives of hundreds of girls and are now leaving a legacy to touch more; but make no mistake about it, living the purpose driven life comes with a price and you must be absolutely sure you are willing to pay it. What‘s the price you pay for living this purpose driven life? Quite often, it‘s maintaining your dreams and aspirations when there is no one or nothing to affirm you or motivate you and many times walking the road alone! But I say and can attest to the fact that it is quite worth it. It‘s important to be authentic to whom you are and how you were created and living a purpose driven life requires this. One thing I strive to do is keep in the company of like minded individuals. It can be quite challenging to maintain living a life of purpose if you constantly surround yourself with individuals who don‘t know what their purpose in life is and have absolutely no interest in finding out. We have to live our days intentionally and really stay focused on the purpose driven life we are trying to achieve. 40 l FALL 2010 I

For each of us that will be something different; for me it is pursuing and cultivating my skills and talents for other entrepreneur ventures, as well as getting back to the very simple things I so love to do and have gotten away from. For you it may be starting that business that has been sitting in your heart for years, taking that dream vacation--even it means taking it alone, moving to that city that just gives you a sense of peace and rest every time you think about it, volunteering or whatever it is. After having breast surgery last year, because of a fibroid tumor in my left breast, which was begin, so I was cancer free; but there are so many others whose story is different, I realized as much as I had accomplished, I still wasn‘t maximizing living my life on purpose. Now be clear this isn‘t a get yourself high because it‘s the beginning of a new year and then all is forgotten come mid March but truly, make a conscientious decision to live your life on purpose, whatever you feel that purpose is because days are not given back to us, they are simply numbered!

In the Spotlight

Name: Terrence Zaahir AKA TZ Life Date of Birth: August 15th City: Philadelphia, PA Occupation: Martial Arts Expert His philosophy: To be the man God created him to be and exhaust all capabilities.

Would like to extend Best Wishes to the Cast & Crew of Tony Clomax’s New Romantic Comedy Webseries 12 Steps to Recovery

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