Huami Magazine Hampton Roads May/June 2022

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H A M P TO N R O A D S

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May/June 2022 Vol. 2 Issue 5

Summit Realty Group LLC Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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We May Wish, But God Has A Plan A Letter From The Editor

There Are No If, Ands, Or Buts About It! Modern technology, such as the internet and smart devices, has changed the way consumers shop for everyday necessities. A Letter from the Editor Everything from groceries to televisions, tires, medications, and patio furniture can be purchased directly from a smartphone or computer. Foot traffic in stores been All greatly reduced, What if tomorrow didn’thas arrive? of your plans, and hopes the Covid 19 pandemic may have played a big role in also. and dreams wouldn’t have a street to park on. that What if Anyhow, many retailers have adjusted how they make their everything that you decided to put off until tomorrow products never accessible in order for them to survive. happened? There would be no reason to save for a rainy day, and you could spare someone the trouble of making As a child, I remember the huge department store catalogs that promises. What if your last opportunity seemingly expired would come in the mail every year, usually around the Christmas today? What would you do? holiday season. I would look at them and prepare my list of items that I wanted before submitting it to my mama. Sometimes I got I’ve been told that I often seem like I do too much. most of what I wanted, but not always. Still, looking through the Honestly, I feel like I am not doing enough and I’m a firm catalog and believing that I would get them was very exciting for believer in knowing that God wouldn’t put anything on me me. Unfortunately, the catalogs are long gone now and have been that I couldn’t handle. I sometimes wonder how life would replaced by digital ones. Awwwe, technology. be if I chose to sit idle and accept what it presented to me. I have found that to be very boring. In my opinion, opportunity I compare those childhood catalog surfing moments to some is a blessing that isn’t afforded to everyone. A challenge experiences I have as an adult. I have often tried to plan out my life to me is an adventure. What is the worst that can happen? by creating a wish list for various stages without the assistance of If I do nothing, I fail, and if I try I don’t, but instead learn a department store catalog. I have made plans for various things something new about myself. Relinquish your pride and in and experiences and made plans on how to acquire and accomplish return acquire life. them. Those plans were submitted to God, and I’m always amazed at what I receive from God in response. The best advice ever given to me happened when someone told me to make my tomorrow happen today. In doing so See, I have learned that even though I make plans, God has the I have pressed myisway with awhat key that onlybest final say. What I think goodthrough for me,doors God knows is truly hope provided. I havemoments, also learned betweena for me. Even in my lowest Godthe hasdifference already prepared what God blesses me with and what life can burden withmy path to higher ground for me. And even when I choose tome follow as well. I compare it to knowing when to be confident and own way, He redirects. when to be quiet, because someone getlife, it confused I strive to live a may better a life with being arrogant. that is connected to God through obedience and grasping a better Makeofyou tomorrow understanding what He desires today, but most for me. happen I admit that I don’t have all importantly make it count. the answers, and sometimes I make Life is but a whisper and mistakes. It’s good to know that even we off must putinourselves a when I get track life, God’sinlove position to hear what it is never changes. telling us.

www.huamimagazine.com Terry L. Watson

Publisher

www.huamimagazine.com Terry L. Watson Editor In Chief Writer Terry L. Watson Writer Monica Montgomery Alana Allen - Deputy Editor Dorjea’ McClammey Writer Ellen Richardson Writer Writers

Tonya Dixon Terry L. Watson Still Shots Photography Alana Allen Photographer Tamara Smith Fredro Star Jeuron Dove Photographer TMF Photography Photographer Photographers Perfect Lenz Photography Todd Youngblood Photography

To Advertise? ShawWant Photography Group Still Shots Photography Send An Email or Call Today

Who Shotya Photography huami.greenville@gmail.com (336)340-7844 Layout Howard Gaither Photography

Mykel Media Company Linda Bennett

mykelmedia@yahoo.com (336) 340-7844 HUAMI MAGAZINE is published quarterly by the Mykel Media Company. Any reproduction of any portion of this publication is prohibited without written permission from the publisher prior to doing so. Mykel Media doesn’t accept responsibility for statements made by individuals featured or advertisers. Comments concerning this publication Greensboro, NCeditor by may be submitted to the 2022 All Rights Reserved E-mail at terrywatson@huamimagazine.com terry.editor@yahoo.com or to Mykel Media Company, LLC P.O. Box 20102 Greensboro, NC 27420 HUAMI MAGAZINE 2014 All Rights Reserved

Terry L. Watson 4

Terry L. Watson Editor/Founder

On The Cover

Photo by Shaw Photography Group


HAMPTON ROADS

CONTENTS

MAY/JUNE 2022

Jerome Henry 20

Where The Heart Is

On The Cover

Summit Realty Group LLC Latoya Adkins

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Aloha Glamour

Alexis Williams

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It’s All About You God

Semaje Collier

Huami Magazine Cutest Baby

Marrel Gravely Foushee

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Also Featured

Delvin Sullivan He is on a mission to educate the youth about the importance of financial literacy. Huntsville, AL

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Verlancia Tucker She is using her experiences and trauma to assist others with managing depression. Learn more about her journey. Little Rock, AR

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Whitney Morgan Do you need help with repairing your credit? Do you need funding for your business? He can help. Kansas City, MO

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By Terry L. Watson Photos by Gwendolyn Wilson Things are changing for Real Estate champion Latoya Adkins. The real estate broker has long been the face and founder of Sweat Realty Group, LLC. Today, her company has pivoted and has become Summit Realty Group LLC. Latoya says that while there has been a name change, the focus is the same; to deliver high-quality customer service experiences to each client. Latoya is a prime example of black entrepreneurship and adequately represents the importance of creating generational wealth and legacy. Currently residing in Franklin, VA, Latoya was born in Portsmouth, VA but was “humbly” raised by a tight-knit family in Southampton County, VA. After graduating from Southampton High School in 1996, Adkins decided to join the military. With hopes of getting away from her community and seeing and learning something different, she served in the National Guard and Army Reserve as military police for eight years. After completing her duty, she decided to pursue her dream of being a real estate agent. In 2008, she began her real estate journey, doing so while pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Saint Paul’s College. After completing her degree in 2012, and with the encouragement of a few friends, Adkins started making big strides in her career. This included getting her broker license and eventually starting her own company. What started as a solo venture turned into a continuously expanding realtor company that Adkins did not see for her future. “After disappointing experiences, while working for companies, I decided to branch out on my own. I had no intention of owning a company. I just wanted to work alone. But then came Sonya Davis, and she wanted to work with me, and that gave me the accountability to get my company together,” she says. In December of 2017, she opened her first Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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Shay Ann Lankford

Sonya Davis

Office Manager

Supervising Broker

Tameka Henry

Dametrice Goodwyn

Realtor

Real Estate Agent

Candice Watkins

Shayla Albergottie, Felicia Parker, Jacqueline Myrick

Realtor

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The AMP Team - Real Estate Agents


Lewanna Picot

Tonya Fontanilla

Realtor

Real Estate Agent

Barbara Alexander

Torrey Knight

Realtor

Real Estate Professional

Jordan Galtress

Jamecia Hawkins

Real Estate Agent

Real Estate Agent

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realtor company in Franklin, VA. As someone known for their hard work, reliability, and understanding, she was able to gain the attention of more realtors looking for a new and fresh start. In 2019, Latoya expanded her company to open a second location in Carrollton, VA. Although she had not set out to do this, she now has fifteen agents, including herself. She made sure that everybody that worked with her was just as committed to being successful at providing the best possible service to her clients as she was. Change can be good, and for Latoya, maintaining her legacy as one of Virginia’s top realtors is her top priority. “Keeping God as the focus of every transaction keeps me humble and focused. I know that everything that happened with my business was not my plan. Yet, I am very grateful for God’s continued favor and the future that He has provided for me and Summit Realty Group LLC,” she says. Please visit their website to learn more about Latoya and the new Summit Realty Group LLC.

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Latoya Adkins Summit Realty Group LLC www.summitrealtygroup.com

213 N. Main Street Franklin, VA 23851 757-556-8015

1545 Crossway Blvd. Ste. 237 Chesepeake, VA 23320 757-556-8015 11


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T U C K E R By Terry L. Watson Photos Provided by Verlancia Tucker It has been said to never judge a book by its cover. For Verlancia Tucker, this assessment is spot on. She is the founder of BOHEMIA Cares, a non-profit organization that offers self-love programs while spreading mental health awareness. The quality programs provide enrichment, mentorship, outreach, educational consulting, and social-emotional learning to individuals and families. “BOHEMIA Cares is not just any nonprofit organization, we are a healing ministry. We allow individuals to share openly about self-love and mental illness in safe, nonjudgmental spaces. We allow God to shine through us so that others will know there is a living God and Savior. When people look and hear me, I want them to see and hear God,” she says. Verlancia grew up in the Delta (Lee County), Arkansas, and is the ninth daughter of ten children born to Jeff and Henrietta Tucker. She is also a mother, educator, mentor, advocate, personal development coach and survivor. Verlancia attended Lee High Schools in Marianna, Arkansas, and has earned a Master of Secondary Education degree and two Bachelor’s degrees in Business Administration, with majors in Advertising-Public Relations and Marketing from UA-Little Rock. She is an Arkansas Educator licensed in Business Technology and endorsed in Career Orientation and English as a Second Language, and has worked as a classroom teacher for ten years with mentorship and teacher supervisor experience. Furthermore, she currently serves as the Education Committee Chair for the Jacksonville Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Verlancia founded BOHEMIA Cares on January 8, 2018. It was an action she shared that God commissioned her to do. “I experienced mental illness at age 17, mainly due to my exposure to domestic violence. Yet, I was fortunate to graduate high school as an honor student, finishing in the top 10% of my graduating class. I attended a community college during my senior year in high school, all while battling the silent monster,” she says. Verlancia moved out on her own and enrolled in college at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock immediately after high school. “After graduating from high school, I thought I would become an accountant and a cosmetologist. After my first two accounting courses, that soon changed. Nonetheless, I graduated from barber school with barber and barber instructor licenses, but I couldn’t practice in that field due to neck and back issues,” she says. As she got older, she ignored the trauma from her early childhood but would find herself involved with another trying situation. Verlancia dated a guy who turned out to be a stalker. During that time, she also lost a family member to gun violence. “Life became so dark and hopeless, and mental illness attacked my mind yet once again,” she shares. Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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“My mental stability plummeted again, and everything that could go wrong was going wrong. I realized that I could no longer manage my daily home life and teach school, and I needed mental counseling. I had to go get help, or death would have been the end result because I had already planned my suicide.” Years would pass, and Verlancia continued to battle depression with the assistance of medication. She also got married, had a son, and was divorced, all within a year. After being left to raise her son alone, Verlancia says she struggled to maintain a smile and work through the heartache and pain. During her trials, Verlancia says there were some bright moments also. “While my personal life was going downhill, my professional life was looking up. I landed a job at a middle school and taught Keyboarding, mentored at-risk girls, and served as the FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) Advisor. Through all of the hustle and bustle, Verlaneca says she lost herself. “Life became so cumbersome and overwhelming. My mental stability plummeted again, and everything that could go wrong was going wrong. I realized that I could no longer manage my daily home life and teach school, and I needed mental counseling. I had to go get help, or death would have been the end result because I had already planned my suicide,” she shares. Verlancia shares that she contemplated suicide because she was in a dark, dark place. Thankfully, she says, God intervened, and she endured countless sleepless days and nights filled with crying, worrying, despair, anxiety, and bitterness. “Even though I managed to attain college degrees and accolades, it meant absolutely nothing because my inner joy and peace were in a place of unrest and discontent. I replayed a lot of negative thoughts and actions. Honestly, I felt as if I had lost my soul. I had a real fistfight with the devil to regain my soul. It was God and therapy that saved my life. My therapist taught me coping strategies, and I learned how to set healthy boundaries for my peace and healing. I then began to shed the resentment and pain that I had harbored for years. I learned so much about myself during the therapy sessions. I realized that I had been battling with myself for a long time. I learned how to identify my triggers and be okay with eliminating toxic people from my inner circle. I realized that what occurred in my life was not a mistake or error. I also asked God why I endured so much pain, heartache, and suffering. God told me, “In order for you to be able to help other people, you had to go through it.” In that moment, I gained a sense of peace and acceptance, and God began to speak the vision of this organization to me,” she says. Verlancia says she is inspired by people who push past adversity and defy the odds. “I am inspired by people who love others when others mistreat them and those who value other people, regardless of where they come from or what they look like,” she says. Her friends of more than 45 years, Pam, Cita, Relynda, Claudette, and Tammy have inspired her the most. “They have been by my side through it all, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the indifferent. They have allowed me to be me and embraced me when my life was in shambles, and they celebrate with me today. They have challenged me to become better, and are my accountability partners in life.” Moving forward, Verlancia hopes to write adult and children’s books about mental health and self-love. She also hopes to open a charter school one day, and open a transition home for single mothers who struggle with mental illness. Her personal goal is to become a professional print model. To learn more about Varlancia and BOHEMIA Cares, please visit their website. h

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www.bohemiacares.org


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The Wealthy Child “I am a Change Agent on the path to create a culture of wealth for the next generation”

By Terry L. Watson Photos Provided by Ronald Pollard

Delvin Sullivan is a Dave Ramsey-certified Financial Coach who believes that “The earlier money can make sense to a child, the better chance they have at being financially responsible adults.” A native of Huntsville, AL, Delvin is the author of The Wealthy Child, a book designed to teach youth about money and the world’s economic process. As someone who grew up in public housing, Delvin’s passion always led him to mentoring youth and posing as a positive role model for kids, particularly young men. Using the basic principles of wealth, he published his book to level the playing field and offer all children the opportunity to become wealthy through knowledge. Some of the topics discussed in the Wealthy Child production are budgeting, banking, investing, credit, income, and assets. “I am introducing children to the basics of financial literacy in a fun and engaging way and teaching kids about the importance of earning, saving, and spending responsibly. My goal is to ensure they understand the importance of earning, saving, and spending responsibly,” Delvin says. In addition to being an author, personal finance coach, and entrepreneur, Delvin is also a US Army veteran and recipient of the Unsung Hero Award. He holds degrees from Alabama A&M University and Murray State University. He is married to Felichia, and they have two children, Tierra and Jordan, along with three grandchildren. Delvin shares, “I began teaching at the Sparkman Homes Boys and Girls Club in 2017, and decided to develop a book and workbook that would give the students something they could take home with them.” The vision for The Wealthy Child is connected to Delvins awareness of the many challenges that youth face, especially within his community. “Studies show 80% of crimes that send people to prison have something to do with money. I want to change that narrative by teaching children how to earn, save, grow, and respect the dollar at an early age,” he says.

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He shares that he loves being able to change the course of a child’s life by ensuring he or she is financially literate. He is also inspired by youth development and making a difference in his community. Growing up in similar situations that many of the young individuals he’s helping are, Delving feels that he has a sincere responsibility to create realistic opportunities for them. “I made it to where I am because of the men placed in my life at the Boys and Girls Club. It was Ugene Phillips, Cedric Wherry, and Tyrone Langford. They would preach, “if you want to be an eagle, don’t hang around turkey’s”. That kept me from becoming a product of my environment,” Delvin says. Delvin’s future goal is to continue to change the lives of millions of children by introducing them to the world’s economic process. To learn more about The Wealthy Child, please visit their website. h

Delvin Sullivan The Wealthy Child

www.thewealthychild.net 256-468-3227

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MAGAZINE

Cutest Baby

Marrel Gravely Foushee The son of Sunny Gravely Foushee and Marrel Foushee

To submit photographs to be placed in the Huami Magazine Cutest Baby feature, please send a detailed email to huami.cutestbaby@gmail.com

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Where The Heart Is Catering & Events By Terry L. Watson - Photos Provided by Veronica Henry Veronica and Jerome Henry of Cleveland, OH are genuine representatives of what love, hard work, and dedication look like. Their union of 14 years has produced several successful businesses and many beautiful memories. Still, they admit that none of what they’ve accomplished outweighs their desire to serve others. Veronica and Jerome are the owners of Where The Heart Is Catering and Events and Where The Heart Is A New You. Their catering business is a full-service offsite catering company that caters to all types of events such as weddings, birthdays, retirement parties, baby showers, school, and corporate events. They offer everything from food to full-blown decorations, including Table Linens, Centerpieces, Wall Monograms, 360 and Selfie Photo Booths. They also have flexible setup options from Full Service, Presentation Setup, and Drop Offs. While Veronica focuses on the food side and decor design side of their business, Jerome works tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure every aspect is executed and carried out with perfection and excellence.

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Born and raised in the inner city of Cleveland, particularly in the Collinwood community, Veronica discovered her passion for cooking at a very young age. She recalls working alongside her mother in the kitchen. Her father worked second shift at Ford Motor Company, and Veronica would prepare him food and put it in the oven until he came home. She says, “I remember sleeping light and listening for his key in the lock, and then I would go running to the kitchen to get his food out for him to eat dinner. I would sit there with my hands on my cheek, smiling and waiting for him to eat the meal I had designed for him. My father would eat the whole plate as I sat there and watched him.” The dish she created for her father consisted of ground beef, elbow pasta, ketchup, barbecue sauce, and hot sauce. Veronica poured her heart into that meal and said it felt great to cook for her father. However, she would find out years later that her father didn’t like ground beef. It didn’t matter, Veronica said, because “My father was truly a girl’s dad, My hero and food taster.” Where The Heart Is A New You provides corporate in-service and training for companies and individuals that want to offer their clients a new method of treating and caring for people. They offer lessons on receiving people with warmth and how to maintain a professional presence. Their clients are those who are committed to personal development and self-improvement and who are engaged in the constant pursuit of excellence. Jerome is also a native of Cleveland. He is an experienced Service Recovery Specialist and has over 25 years of experience. He has always possessed leadership qualities, many of which appear while he conducts business. He is complimented often for his level of professionalism and genuineness. He is known for leaving lasting impressions on his clients and providing valuable tools and information for them to reference in personal and professional arenas. He says, “When a person lives true to who they are, it makes it easier to help and leave lasting impressions. This is the way of light, and we are light. Be the light that you are.”

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After graduating from high school, Veronica attended the University of Akron and studied Criminal Justice Technical Education. During this time she had an apartment and would prepare meals for her friends, such as Barbecue Neck Bones, Fried Pork Chops, Fried Chicken, Macaroni and Cheese, Yams, Greens, Pinto Beans, Corn Bread, and more. “All you had to do was tell me that you were hungry, “ she says. Veronica’s apartment was that apartment where people on campus knew they could always come and get a meal. After graduating from The University of Akron, she landed a job working for Cleveland Municipal School District as a Learning Disability Tutor for 12 years. After leaving there, she worked a few other jobs in the same field but soon decided that she really wanted to do something else more fulfilling. “I knew it was something more profound on the inside, drawing me to cooking and entertaining on a different level,” Veronica says. So, in 2010, she decided to start a catering company. In 2012, she enrolled in Culinary School at Cuyahoga Community College and perfected her craft. Veronica says when God gave her the vision to start the catering company, she asked Him what she should name the company. “I heard Where The Heart Is. I was told that name would be the umbrella for many companies,” she says. “In 2013 we changed the name from Where The Heart Is Catering to Where The Heart Is Catering & Events.” Veronica said their company, Where The Heart Is A New You, is birthed out of a desire to help people tap into the true essence of who they are by loving and accepting themselves. Their focus is also on assisting and teaching good customer service skills and using your inner voice to pursue the business you have always wanted. While the official starting date for Where The Heart Is A New You is October of 2021, Jerome says the company services came to him in 2006. “My wife and I wanted to have a community and peoplefocused aspect to our catering and event décor. We wanted to emphasize customer service and people treatment,” he says.

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Since its inception, Where The Heart Is A New You has been able to keep the product highly potent and consistent and keep the subject of people treatment interesting. “Maintaining the integrity of our product has meant making hard decisions on what business to pass on and structuring the work so that it produces the same high-quality outcomes,” Jerome says. Veronica says she is inspired by Jerome’s encouragement and support. “He’s my biggest supporter and loudest cheerleader. It’s nice to have a Booster Club in the audience when you’re moving off pure vision and determination,” she says. She is also inspired by her brother William, who she says reminds her “Presentation Is Everything”, a motto she has spoken since the beginning of her business journey. She also shares that running a business can have its challenges and says her biggest challenge is to remember the answer is inside of her, and she must be willing to go inside.

Pictured with Veronica & Jerome (left to right) are Tiera Patillar, Aisha Tate and Sharrell Pointer These are some of the faces behind the excellence of Where The Heart Is Catering & Events

Their advice to up-and-coming Chefs, Caterers, or Event Designers is to know your worth and never devalue what you do and offer. “Know the signs when it’s time to walk away from the deal. Most importantly, know that it’s ok to walk away from the deal,” she says. In the future, Veronica and Jerome plan for Where The Heart Is Catering & Events to offer a one-stop shop, state of the art event venue that can accommodate four events of 250 people at the same time. “We are writing our vision and making it plain,” they shared. To learn more about Veronica and Jerome, and Where The Heart Is Catering & Events, and Where The Heart Is A New You, please visit their website. h

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wheretheheartis.anewyou@gmail.com 216-313-0390 216-322-7641

www.wthicateringandevents.com 216-322-7641

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SEMAJE Nobody But You, God

By Dorjea’ McClammey Photos Provided by Semaje Now, reader, you will want to remember this name, Semaje. The 29-year-old breakout singer hails from Detroit, Michigan. As the middle child of three, Semaje’s parents made sure he and his brothers Demarcyon and Noah never missed a day of church. He has carried those values throughout his life, and the only time he did not make it to church was when the Covid 19 pandemic hit. Semaje Collier describes his style as contemporary, pop, urban and funky. “I am bringing a new urban inspirational sound to the music industry,” he says. Growing up in the church helped Semaje develop his talent. First, he started in the church choir and then sang with the praise team. On his own time, he would spend hours listening to and studying the sounds of J.Moss, James Moore, Mary Mary, Usher, Karen Clark, Daryl Coley and Michael Jackson being two of my biggest influences. Daryl Coley’s vocal abilities inspired Semaje, and it’s quite noticeable their voices sound similar. “I was amazed by Coley’s riffs and runs and the amount of conviction and presence he gave when he sang,” he shares. As for Michael Jackson, he was amazed by his ability to take risks and start trends. He shares, “Michael was confident in what he did and kept doing it regardless of what others thought about him. I am moved by Michael’s unadulterated ability to captivate audiences. I am inspired by Michael Jackson vocal ability, his distinctive tone, one of a kind vibrato. The way he layered and stacked his background vocals on his records is completely insane. I see so much of myself in Michael.” His journey as a musician has been nothing short of a blessing. He tried out for the gospel singing contest “Sunday Best,” and although he made it to the judging round, he did not make it all the way. “I got a little discouraged and asked God what He was trying to tell me? I realized it was not in God’s plans for me, but I didn’t allow that experience to discourage me. I kept singing, ministering, and putting out music covers,” he says. Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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Things began to change for the better for Semaje. One day, he was blessed with the opportunity to work with Fred Jerkins, who has also worked with Dark Child to produce hits for artists Destiny’s Child, Beyonce, Brandy, and more. Fred featured Semaje as the lead vocalist on his song “Reason of Praise” which, of course, landed at the number four position on the Billboard charts. Semaje described the moment as surreal. “Seeing all the different plaques on the wall for songs such as Lose My Breath, Deja VU, the Boy Is Mine, and Michael Jackson’s Rock My World; I couldn’t believe that I was in the studio working with the same legendary producer that worked with Beyonce and Micheal Jackson and Now I am working with him, this is a dream! I grew up saying I wanted to work with the Dark Child squad,” Semaje shares with excitement. After that experience, things kept rolling for Semaje. One day during the pandemic, the accomplished gospel artist, Deitrick Haddon called and told him to get on the social media platform Clubhouse, and play some of his covers. He played his cover of “All I Do” by Stevie Wonder, and everyone went crazy. Semaje says in no time, his inbox became full of messages from producers and artists wanting to work with him. Soon he was speaking with Tyscot Records, known for their artists such as PJ Morton, John P. Kee, and Anthony Brown. After talking for about two to three months, they offered him a partnership deal. They worked together to put out his cover to Bill Withers Lovely Day, which debuted at the number nine position on the Billboard Charts. He has continued to work with Tyscot Records alongside Anesha Birchett, who has experience with artists Beyonce, Justin Bieber, H.E.R., Mary Mary and more, but now she’s stepping into a new role as Executive Producer of his upcoming debut album. “My sound, my creativity, vocal ability and interpretation of music has changed

“I desire to share with the world that no matter what the circumstances are, nobody is exempt from living a good life. We all have gotten it wrong but we serve a God who can make us right.” since working with the gamechanger Anesha, I can’t imagine doing this without her,” says Semaje. Semaje has finally found his distinctive lane and sound with iconic producer Shajuan Andrews from Brooklyn, New York. “He’s the fresh new sound that was missing in music, he’ll be listed as one of the greatest of all times,” says Semaje. The three of them are working together to produce Semaje’s debut album, including his latest single, You written by Jamel Smith which debuted April 22nd and landed in Top 20 Billboard Charts.. Semaje loves being able to change the world through his music. “I desire to tell people that no matter what they have done in life, no matter how many mistakes they have made, we serve a God who makes us right,” he says. “Nobody is exempt from living a good life through God.” Now we know about his musical inspirations, but Semaje says his family is his biggest inspiration. “My father, mother and big brother demarcyon and grandmothers have played a huge part in making me the person I am today, mainly by setting such highexamples to live up to,” he says. Semaje is currently attending Oakland University in Rochester Hills, earning his bachelor’s degree in human resources in public relations. He has recently welcomed his nephew, Denver James, into the world. “ The greatest thing that’s happen in 2022 is my nephew, says Semaje” You can expect a lot from Semaje in the near future. This will include albums, tours, and radio appearances. He is also working on receiving more endorsements, including being featured in commercials, “I want to bring more faith to television and tell the world about Jesus,” he says. His advice to others who may have a passion or a dream such as his is clear and concise. “Never adjust your life to what makes sense to another individual as long as you continue to follow the voice of God. Doing that way, you can’t go wrong.” To learn more about Semaje, check out his Instagram @isemaje and on Facebook and Twitter at Semaje Collier. You can also find his music on all platforms. h

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Information Provided By Lexi Williams and Terry L. Watson Photos Provided by Aloha Glamour Credible influencers remind the world of its limitless possibilities when charisma is met with expert potential, tenacity, and sincere cause. Existing as a living attestation of that theory; is the effervescent professional, Lexi Williams. Lexi Williams of Gulfport, MS, is an author, advocate, creative mogul, CEO, and Founder of Aloha Glamour, a multi-faceted heritage-enthused brand house that provides both trend-savvy apparel and inspiration to a diverse clientele. Slogan-ed as the Afro-Waiin Boutique, Lexi provides consumers with the opportunity to enjoy a unique blend of African and Hawaiian inspired fashions, alongside an unyielding positivity and an energetic online community. Born after the tragic loss of Lexi’s daughter (Lauren Taylor), Aloha Glamour has remained a community of women, empowering others to find and use their voices, turning their tragedies into triumphs and their mess into a message. Lexi’s mantra is simple. “I believe that women should live boldly and love themselves wholeheartedly, while using their voice and fashion to promote living their life in color.” Lexi couples an impressive career in fashion. This is paired with a buoyant reputation of innovative leadership, trailblazing success, and community achievement. She has also created, chaired, and hosted the first-ever, Black-owned business Awards on The Mississippi Gulf Coast, highlighting more than 250 black-owned businesses. The sold-out event helped to solidify her reputation. She is no stranger to the limelight. She has been featured four times in Gulf Coast Women Magazine and has had two sensational write-ups on Aloha Glamour. She styled Tamika from the hit Bravo TV show, Southern Charm and was interviewed herself, by Ms. Jamiee on the MS. Congeniality Show. She was also featured twice at the Inaugural Black Business Awards and has experienced more television coverage for her contributions, at Aloha Glamour. Lexi’s propensity for success is imminent, and she displays proficient know-how in the world of sales, earning as much as $33,000 in under five days. When Lexi is not out changing the world for the better, she is an asset to her communal body and a loving member of her family and friendship circles. She is a medically retired veteran, having served more than 17 years in the US Air Force. She is also a mother to aspiring model Laila Williams (16) and Marine Kaileb Williams (18). Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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Aloha Glamour offers Afrowiian Clothing and Accessories for the bold individual who believes in living life in color and outloud. Lexi shares, “I started the business in January 2017. I was coping with the loss of my daughter while also serving in the military. I needed to do something for my mental health, and I remembered how I felt when I first tried on a Pu’a Skirt. The drive behind establishing Aloha Glamour was curated from the sense of “ka wiwo ole” (the Hawaiian word for confidence) that I received the first time I put on the skirt.. The floral design and the way it held my figure provided a certain feeling of individuality and boldness. I wanted to share that sensation with other women as well.” Aloha Glamour affords all full-figured a seat at the fashion table by adding a “Pop of Pretty” to their wardrobe. Each skirt is one size fits all and exclusive in design. Lexi says she hopes that with each purchase, her clients will feel the same confidence and unique styling experience as she did, over and over again. She says what she loves most about her business is when others contact her or stop her in the store and say things such as “Because of you, I got through.” “Sometimes our stories are the keys to unlock someone else’s prison, and I am honored when I’m told I was the key for them,” she says. What inspires her the most are the families that are directly affected by her business. “Their hustle is unmatched. When I visited Ghana in June 2021, I had the opportunity to meet Artisans that make Aloha Glamour go around. Knowing that I directly affect their kids’ education and their quality of life inspires me to do what I do,” she says. On the other hand, she says her own children have impacted her life and career the most. She says it’s the resilience and grace shown and given unto her while she was turning her pain into her passion got her through. “I could never repay them for what they’ve done for me,” Lexi said. Moving forward, she has plans to open Aloha Glamour Flag Ship stores in outlet malls around the country. She also plans to offer cultural travel trips to Ghana and Hawaii bi-annually, so that others can experience the cultures, the people, and the food that she loves so much. Her advice to others who may follow a path similar to hers is to do it scared. “There will never be a perfect time to launch or start that business. Someone is waiting on what you have to offer to make it through their trying time. So pray to God and do it.” To learn more about Lexi and Aloha Glamour, please visit their website or contact her directly. h

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Hampton Roads - May/June 2022


Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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Hampton Roads - May/June 2022


Whitney Morgan M-Powerment Solutions LLC

By Terry L. Watson Photos Provided by Whitney Morgan He is young, black, and making moves in the Kansas City, MO, business district. He is the owner and founder of M-Powerment Solutions LLC, an experienced financial literacy company that focuses on credit restoration and helping individuals become debt-free. They also help businesses establish business credit and funding options. Their award-winning services have assisted in removing all types of derogatory items such as bankruptcies and medical bills from their client’s credit files. To be clear, M-Powement Solutions LLC gets the job done. At just 34 years old, Whitney Morgan has seen a lot. While he presently resides in Kansas City, he has also lived in Atlanta, GA, Port Townsend, WA, and his native home of Minneapolis, MN. He has a bachelor’s degree in Architecture and a masters degree in Urban Planning from the University of Kansas. His background involves Transportation Planning, City Development, and Small Business Advocacy, and he’s held many leadership positions and volunteered just as well. His volunteering efforts include Kappa Alpha Psi, Freedom Schools, Conference of Minority Transportation Officials, Finance and College Ministry Leader with Faith City Christian Center, and Black Student Union. What separates M-Powement Solutions LLC from other companies that provide similar services? Whitney says it’s their commitment to providing quality service at a very affordable cost. “We also have various products to help our clients build positive credit in their name, such as our secure credit card with cashback rewards. We also have the Credit My Rent program that adds all positive rent payments to their credit report, and we partner with various credit builder companies like Self, Credit Strong, Grow Credit, and more. Our goal is to provide our clients with excellent solutions to address their financial struggles,” he says. Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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Some of the additional tools offered by Whitney and his team are Credit Restoration Will, Trust, and Power of Attorney, and Budgeting/Debt Payoff Education. There is also a Smart Credit Monitoring App that allows users to view all three credit scores, and Merchant Services that offer payment processing systems for businesses. Additionally, they offer a Youth Financial Literacy Scholarship and Educational Program, Rocket Lawyer Services, Student Loan Assistance, Mobile Telehealth Services, and Business Credit Business Funding.

“Experience is the best teacher. Knowledge is not power; applied knowledge is. If knowledge by itself were power, most librarians would be millionaires.”

The decision to launch M-Powement Solutions LLC happened in June 2020, during the Covid 19 pandemic, Whitney shares. “My wife and I struggled with bad credit caused by debt consolidation. That debt was built because my wife was laid off multiple times, and I was repeatedly passed up for promotions I qualified for. This caused a lot of stress in our marriage and ironically served as a learning experience. We decided to educate other families about the importance of having good credit and the opportunities that come with it.” Whitney says what he loves most about his business is being able to help people buy brand new houses and new cars, find funding for their business, and increase their financial literacy. “We are breaking generational curses,” he says. Waking up every day knowing that he has a gift that can help a lot of people and then putting his gift into action is what pushes him. He also credits his father and grandfather for being great examples of what a man should be. “I was raised by a single father. He has instilled loving and caring principles in me and showed me how to work hard and provide for my family. He told me ever since I could remember that I could be anything I wanted to be and often called me Mr. President as a child. My grandfather taught me how to fish. He also showed me what a consummate professional and respectable Christian man looks like. He has been married to my grandmother for over 50 years. He has held multiple civic positions and joined a fraternity. My grandfather is an architect and has designed buildings all across the country. He’s been retired for over 20 years and wakes up every day and does what he wants,” Whitney says. Whitney offers the following advice for those who may follow in his footsteps. “Experience is the best teacher. Knowledge is not power; applied knowledge is. If knowledge by itself were power, most librarians would be millionaires.”

Whitney Morgan M-Powerment Solutions LLC www.mpowerment-solutions.com (816) 348-3223

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As life continues to happen for Whitney, he plans to use his products and services to help people across the country. There are also plans to expand. To learn more about Whitney Morgan and M-Powerment Solutions LLC, please contact them directly or visit their website. h

Hampton Roads - May/June 2022


Hampton Roads - May/June 2022

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