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WHAT’S INSIDE:

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PUBLISHER NOTES COVER STORY (MUHAMMAD ALI) UP & COMING TRENDSETTERS EDUCATION HEALTH & WELLNESS FITNESS TRENDS LEGAL TRENDS INSPIRATIONAL AUTHOR CORNERS TRENDSETTER SPOTLIGHT BEAUTY TRENDS FASHION TRNDS ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

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“Be Addicted to Your Grind!!”

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t’s 3:30am and I’m still up working on the magazine. I’m very tired, but my mind will not allow me to close my eyes. I work 18 hour days and hardly ever sleep. But that’s what I do, because I’m addicted to my grind. I’m so engaged in the quality and substance of the magazine and how readers may perceive it, that I spend extra time, quietly alone, browsing every article to ensure a positive influence. One by one I review the dialogues that are submitted by my writers, and I take time out to thank God for each staff member for bringing their amazing talents to the magazine. It’s now 5:30am and I’m still at it, making sure that this issue, like every other issue, makes its mark. My bed is calling my name, but not before my mind and soul are both satisfied. This is nothing new to me, day in and day out, because the success of the magazine gives me the strength to keep going. I’m addicted to my grind. We started in 2007 as a 24 page black and white newspaper, and have grown to a 90 page full color glossy magazine with amazing content. Early on, I made the decision that I would not allow anyone to restrict my path. I stayed away from negativity, and maintained my drive to succeed. My dedicated team supported my vision, and that was an important factor in the magazine’s success. We’ve grown tremendously over the past seven years. Everything from the Grammy Awards to the Presidential Election has been covered in T2T. We’re half

a million strong with digital readers, and have hard copy distribution in seven major U.S. cities. I’ve seen a lot of changes throughout the magazine’s history, but we adapted to those changes, realigned our objectives, and continued to survive to remain on top. For, I’m addicted to my grind. Being addicted to your grind means you’re loyal to your mission to succeed. Recognize your passion and move forward. I’m not suggesting that you miss getting your rest, or work 18 hour days as I do. But once you realize what your passion is, maintain a sense of urgency in all that you do. Look at the overall big picture, and view the glass as half full instead of half empty. Unleash your power, set your goals, and strive for success. It may seem like a long journey, but it will become a rewarding one. If your friends or family members don’t see your vision, don’t worry about that, it’s not for them. Position yourself around positive people. Persevere and never give up. As you climb the ladder of success, become a positive role model and example for others to follow. And as God blesses you, become a blessing to others. You will eventually reap your rewards, and that will make your addiction to your grind truly worthwhile! Trendsetters to Trendsetters Magazine – 9 Years Strong!!!

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PUBLISHER’S NOTES


PUBLISHER Willie Stewart / Atlanta, GA (T2T, FSM, LTM) VICE PRESIDENT & CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER Tina Williams / Atlanta, GA (T2T, FSM, LTM) DIRECTOR OF CREATIVE SERVICE / BRANDING Lacie Williams / Atlanta, GA (T2T, FSM. LTM) SR. CELEBRITY JOURNALIST Shernita Wiggins-Wynder / Pensacola, FL (T2T, FSM, LTM) MANAGING EDITOR Melody Edwards / Atlanta, GA (T2T) COPY EDITOR Lillian “Bee” Young / Pittsburg, PA (T2T, FSM, LTM) EDITOR Kimberly Coleman / Charlotte, NC (T2T, LTM) PUBLIC RELATIONS Glenda “China” Scott / Atlanta, GA (T2T, FSM) WEB DEVELOPMENT / SOCIAL MEDIA Lukeither Willingham / Atlanta, GA (T2T) FREELANCE WRITERS Tina Williams / Atlanta, GA ( T2T, FSM, LTM) Beverly Hill Shelley / Atlanta, GA (T2T) J.B Jatez / Durham, NC (T2T)

Trendsetters to Trendsetters Magazine (T2T) Latino Trendsetters Magazine ( LTM) FanSetters Sports Magazine (FSM)

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CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Monica Teasley / Atlanta, GA (T2T) Dr. Linda Amerson / Arlington, TX (T2T, FSM) Camela Douglas / Dayton, OH (T2T, FSM, LTM)


MUHAMMAD ALI BOXING LEGEND, VISIONARY, PHILANTHROPIST, HUMANITARIAN, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST and MORE…

“The Man…the Pioneer & American Legend” Written by Shernita Wiggins-Wynder

The Man...

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I ain’t no Christian. I can’t be where I see all the colored people fighting for forced integration get blown up. They get hit by the stones and chewed by dogs and then these crackers blow up a Negro church…People are always telling me what a good example I would be if I just wasn’t Muslim. I’ve heard over and over why couldn’t I just be more like Joe Louis and Sugar Ray. Well, they are going and the Black man’s condition is just the same, ain’t it? We’re still catching hell!

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“THE BIRTH OF A VOICE and VICTORY” Phrases like this when the media captured our beloved Muhammad Ali spurting rants that angered some and inspired many…is what we have come to love about the recently departed boxing legend that has become a cultural icon for strength and endurance. No one could believe that just a couple of months behind losing his friend, Prince Rogers Nelson, who was a music genius and music icon in his own right, we lost yet another irreplaceable trailblazer. Who was this man who entertained many with his trash-talking phrases and undeniable way of speaking his own victories into life?

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Muhammad Ali (Childhood) photo

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uhammad Ali was born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. to parents of humble privilege in Louisville, Kentucky, January 17, 1942. His father was a talented artist and house painter whose works are displayed in the community today. His mother was a domestic employee and encouraged her son to achieve the best. Cassius Clay’s identity was nurtured early on during the struggle for civil rights, when it was at an all time high in weeding out the fighters and the “stand-byers,” so-to-speak. His rambunctious behavior was evident in childhood, then followed him into adulthood and every aspect of his life where his “voice” needed to be heard. This outspoken creatively conjured “in your face” rhetoric earned him many nick-names like: Louisville lip, mighty-mouth, cash the brash, and gaseous Cassius. The young Clay was never afraid of standing up and defending what mattered to him…which is what led him into the career he would later take sovereign ownership of. In a twist of fate, young Cassius’ bike was stolen and he told police officer, Joe Martin, that he was going to beat up the thief. Martin’s response was, Well, you better learn how to fight before you start challenging people. Martin trained young boxers at a local gym and started sparring with Ali. Needless to say, his journey began with his first amateur bout in 1954, which he won by a split decision. He went on to win the 1956 Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions and the Amateur Union’s national title for the light heavyweight division.

Ali’s childhood Home from 1947 to 1961

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Ali’s childhood home was renovated for 250,000 and opened May1, 2016 as a tourist attraction


Malcom X and Muhammad Ali March 1964 THE BIRTH OF HIS “SPIRITUAL WALK and IDENTITY”

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After hearing Malcolm X speak at a meeting saying, You might see these Negroes who believe in nonviolence and mistake us for one of them, and put your hands on us thinking that we are going to turn the other cheek—and we’ll put you to death just like that. Young Cassius Clay began some spiritual soul-searching, after that and joined the Nation of Islam (NOI) in 1964. He first called himself

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Cassius X, then later, Muhammad Ali. He became both political ally and friend to Malcolm X and when he was preparing for the fight with Sonny Liston, Malcolm X had this to say about his friend, Clay will win. He is the finest Negro athlete I have ever known and he will mean more to his people than Jackie Robinson. Robinson is an establishment hero. Clay will be our hero…Not many people know the quality of mind he has in there. One forgets that although the clown never imitates a wise man, a wise man can imitate the clown.

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“THE BIRTH OF HIS FAMILY” No one loved family more than Muhammad Ali and at the time…women. Although he had his share of loves in his life…he truly loved each one of them and they all clearly had a space in his heart. His first wife Sonji Roi was a world-wind romance. He met and married her all in one month in August 1964. This marriage did not last

Muhammad Ali’s second wife Khalilah (Belinda Boyd)

concocted to connive her was a scam. That wasn’t legal”… however, even after all of that-Muhammad and Veronica split up in 1986. His other children were conceived by external relationships: Miya with Patricia Harvell and a love child with Wanda Bolton (who he allegedly had an affair with while married to Belinda). Muhammad Ali made his final selection in November 1986 when he married Yolanda “Lonnie” Williams and they adopted a son, Assad Amin. Now this love, spanned for decades before they tied the knot and has an interesting story behind it. Their first meeting was in 1963 when

Muhammad Ali’s first wife Sonji Roi in 1964

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Muhammad Ali and third wife Veronica Porshe Yolanda or “Lonnie” as she is affectionately called, was 6 years old, with pigtails. Ali was 21 years old and had purchased his parents Odessa and Cassius Marcellus Clay a new home across from Lonnie’s family’s house. Whenever he came home to visit his parents, he would spend time with the neighborhood children and she remembers

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long and would yield no children, ending in January 1966. Just a year later he met and married Belinda Boyd in August 1967, and she loved him enough to convert to Islam and changed her name to Khalilah. Together they had Maryum, Jamilah and Rasheda (twins) and Muhammad Ali Jr. While he was yet married to Khalilah, he met Veronica Porshe in 1975, and unfortunately, this ruined his second marriage. He married Veronica that summer while she was pregnant with their daughter Hana, and their second daughter Laila was born that December 1977. Veronica shared in an interview with USA TODAY Sports that their secret marriage was right before his fight in Zaire, Africa while he was married to his second wife. Veronica kept it to herself to keep Ali from any legal consequences and to avoid him, “Going to jail for having two wives.” His wife Khalilah heard about it and got angry (of course) and told the media, “It wasn’t a real marriage, Islamicly or non-Islamicly…Whatever he


Muhammad Ali and Wife Yolanda “Lonnie” Williams

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being “scared to death” and hiding behind her mother Marguerite’s dress. Ali’s mother would take Lonnie’s mother with her to Ali’s fights and they fostered a long time friendship. Surely this love was inevitable and who better to spend his final four decades with, than a woman who had known him in some form or fashion since his early days as a man. During that time, she has been his friend, confidant, lover, supporter, protector, caregiver and guiding hand to ensure the longevity of his legacy. Muhammad was Lonnie’s “first and forever” love and this was evident when they were at the Ringside Café in Louisville, KY, and restaurant owner, John Ramsey, longtime friend of Ali saw his friend flirting with his wife of six years in 1992. He realized that Lonnie was the “one” because of the effect she apparently had on him. He was trying to kiss her on the cheek, and she was blushing and trying to pull away, and he was pulling her close and whispering in her ear. It warmed my heart. I had never seen him in that capacity. I saw a side of Muhammad Ali that wasn’t the fighter, that wasn’t the humanitarian that (was) the guy in love with the girl.

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“THE BIRTH OF A SURVIVOR” The world was already aware that no one could hold a candle to the boxing legend, cultural icon and supporter of civil liberties, Muhammad Ali. But we truly learned how GREAT he was when he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 1984, three years after he retired. This neurodegenerative disorder is where cells in part of the brain that controls movement, begin to die. As a result, the patient slows down, lose coordination and tremble according to scientific research. After Alzheimer’s, Parkinson is the second most common neurodegenerative disease. In 1978, signs of slurring his speech was evident and then two years later at the age of 38 he suffered a beating at the hands of Larry Holmes and again in 1981 he took another pummeling right before retiring for good. At this point, Ali’s physical deterioration was obvious along with suffering permanent fatigue, drooling from the mouth and hand tremors. In an interview with Bryant Gumbel, he called his condition a “trial” from God and said he had accepted his fate. In his own words, I might

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Muhammad Ali waves to fans after receiving the "Bambi Trophy" die tomorrow, I might die next week. I don’t know when I’ll die. He admitted that this disease made him fearful of speaking in public and to this; our now gentle giant knew it was a fight he would have to overcome. I realize my pride would make me say no, but it scares me to think I’m too proud to come on this show because of my condition. He fought all the way to the end and on Friday, June 3, 2016…he fought the final “good fight!” He leaves us with these compelling words. I once read something that said- ‘He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.’ Well, boxing is a risk and life is a gamble, and I got to take both.

was late in life when he had the privilege to meet and get to know one of the world’s pioneers and heroes, it was still a blessing. In his words, “…he was already stricken with Parkinson’s by this time but his incredible gestures of love and support were the great blessings of my life.” President Obama keeps two items given to him from the famed legend, Muhammad Ali, a book entitled, GOAT: A Tribute to Muhammad Ali and a set of boxing gloves. For those who don’t know what “GOAT” means (Greatest of All Time)…and THAT, he was! For our first African American and 44th President...Barack Obama, he

The Pioneer...

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President Barack Obama and Muhammad Ali

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On June 9th, President Barack Obama shared a special tribute to boxing legend, Muhammad Ali about what and who he was to him on FaceBook live from the Oval office. He stated that he was someone who tried to bridge the gap between the Muslim and Christian faiths. President Obama went on further to say that for AfricanAmericans, Ali helped to liberate our minds and made us proud to be who we are, and he jokingly interjected that we could be “pretty and tough at the same time.” In his message of homage about the Champ, President Barack Obama informed the world that his own identity was shaped by what Ali accomplished and that although it


gave him the strength to rise above being the “underdog” and settling for becoming a WINNER against the odds! The President turned to the page in the book of Muhammad Ali standing over Sonny Liston after a knockout fight and shared an emotional reasoning behind why it was so special to him. It was more than the fact that it was given to him by the “GOAT” but it was an image of him defeating Liston when everyone else thought he would never do it…and he said that not only did he defeat him once—but TWICE! I hung a photographed poster in my office over my desk as I was running for the U.S. Senate. I was considered a big underdog, nobody expected me to win and when I was out campaigning and making calls people would say, “What’s your name? Barack Obama? How do you pronounce that? And I would come back to my office and look at the Champ and be reminded, that—He shocked the world and maybe I could too…It is rare to capture the imagination of an entire world and even more rare doing it by being openly funny and generous and courageous. In my book, he will always be THE GREATEST!

“THE RISE OF A CHAMP”

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Some might say that Muhammad Ali is not the best boxer…but when you look at his background’s overall history when it comes to various eras and weight classes, it is said that it’s undeniable. However, you cannot refute his unique style in the boxing ring with his quick moves and reflexes that earned him an unexpected three heavyweight championships. Ali gained the respect of his peers and those across sports barriers, joining the millions of fans across the world who came to love and respect him

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and his gifted talents. A talent that stemmed from a compassionate cop taking the time to turn what would have been a bad situation, when a young Cassius Clay’s bike was stolen, and teaching him how to fight as a CHAMPION! After Ali’s fight in 1959 with a Golden Gloves win to his title, the next year he won the light heavyweight gold medal in Rome at the Summer Olympics of 1960. It would be years later in his fight with hard-hitting Sonny Liston in 1964 that he would rise from being the underdog and proclaim that he was the greatest. His famous phrase “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” began in the taunts that he blared at his opponent Sonny Liston, as well as, his prediction of the round Liston would go down defeated. This confirmed why he was so confident and sky-rocketed Ali’s career as he would go on to defeat Liston a second time the following year. From there Muhammad Ali’s career just continued to soar with him stirring up controversy in the midst of his journey that was out of the norm for professional athletes especially during that time when there was already friction affecting the Black community. Ali, as Cassius Clay, had been in the company of Malcolm X who was clearly becoming an influence in his life. So on March 6, 1964, the Nation of Islam gave him the name, “Muhammad Ali.” That didn’t stop this high profile Champ who was now becoming a rage on the boxing stage, however, his beliefs in his Muslim faith gave him the courage to resist the invitation to join in the fight with the Vietnam War by not showing up for his induction into the U.S. Armed Forces on April 28, 1967, stating his reasoning was based on his religious beliefs. My conscience won’t let me go shoot my brother, or some darker people, or some poor

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hungry people in the mud for big powerful America, and shoot them for what? They never called me nigger, they never lynched me, they didn’t put no dogs on me, they didn’t rob me of my nationality, rape and kill my mother and father. … Shoot them for what? How can I shoot them poor people? Just take me to jail. He was arrested and stripped of his boxing license and titles. Ali was convicted of evading draft and was sentenced to five years in prison and fined $10,000 until his conviction was appealed. His popularity dropped but he held out and stood firm and in 1970, as the public attitude turned against the war, the New York State Supreme Court ordered his boxing license reinstated and his conviction was overturned. He tried to regain his heavyweight title from an undefeated Joe Frazier in what was called the fight of the century, but lost by unanimous decision, his first defeat as a pro. He went on to win 10 fights before his next loss to Ken Norton in 1943 and

from there—Muhammad Ali aimed again at the title shot against George Foreman in 1974 in Kinshasa, Zaire, which the nation called the “Rumble in the Jungle” with Ali being the underdog once again. But his “rope-a-dope” strategy where he would lean on the ring ropes and absorb blows from Foreman until he was tired, worked, and in the eighth round he knocked him out and gained the title that was stripped seven years earlier. Ali would plow through 10 more fights and another memorable one, “Thrilla in Manila” in 1975 with Frazier. But in all his glory, eventually one must accept the inevitable and on February 15, 1978 he lost his title to Leon Spinks, however, he became the first to win the world heavyweight boxing title three times when he turned around and defeated Spinks seven months later. Recognizing when to take a bow out gracefully, he announced his retirement in 1979. Muhammad Ali left with a career record of 56 wins, five losses and 37 knockouts.

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Muhammad Ali stands over Sunny Liston in first round knock down May 25th 1965. Ali went on to win


Muhammad Ali lights the cauldron at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia

American Legend...

Muhammad Ali, earned his title of being “The Greatest of All Time!” His signature wins, his famous phrases that entertained millions with his “gotta luv’em” phrases that let the masses know that he was created unique and he knew it. Yet, boxing was not the only event in his life that made us love him. Ali did so much more as the years went by and during his career. You can Google them and still would be reading for days, but we will leave you with some of the most memorable and a few words from those who held him in high esteem.

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Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier

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“THE RISE OF A LEGEND OF THE PEOPLE” Ali was always concerned about the civil rights of ALL people, so in 1990 he negotiated the release of American hostages with Saddam Hussein; in 2002, he was the Messenger of Peace for the United Nations when he was sent to Afghanistan. He was chosen to light the cauldron at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. He was voted BBC’s “Sporting Personality of the Century.” Ali was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in a 2005 White

Muhammad Ali receives the Presidential Medal of Freedom

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House ceremony, and in the same year the $60 million Muhammad Ali Center, a nonprofit museum and cultural center focusing on peace and social responsibility, opened in Louisville. Ring Magazine named Ali “Fighter of the Year” five times, more than any other boxer, and he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990. He has been on the cover of Sports Illustrated for 40 issues. (History.com)

When asked how he wanted to be remembered, Ali gave this response: I’d like for them to say he: He took a few cups of love. He took one table spoon of patience. One table spoon, tea-spoon of generosity. One pint of kindness. He took one quart of laughter. One pinch of concern. And then he mixed willingness with happiness. He added lots of faith. And he stirred it up well. Then he spread it over a span of a lifetime. And he served it to each and every deserving person he met. These are words we can ALL live by and as we continue to bid farewell to an American Legend, we celebrate the memory of Muhammad Ali. Although on June 3, 2016 you transitioned from this world, you will forever be in our eyes…THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME!■

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“We lost a giant today,” Manny said. “Boxing benefited from Muhammad Ali’s talents but not nearly as much as mankind benefited from his humanity.” -Manny Pacquiao

“…I have met hundreds of renowned celebrities, artists, athletes, and world leaders. But only a handful embodied the self-sacrificing and heroic qualities that defined my friend and mentor, Muhammad Ali. A master of self-promotion, he declared early in his boxing career, I am the greatest! This kind of boasting enraged many people, just as he’d hoped, ensuring a large audience that just wanted to see this upstart boy taught a lesson.”-Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


"‌when we think about the legacy of Muhammad Ali, what he did in the ring is not what we think about," said Smith. "For nearly two years, I worked to transform myself into the man who changed his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali and shook up the world. That's really what makes my job so beautiful as an actor," Smith continued. "For four or five months at a time, I get to wear people's lives, so I got to wear Muhammad Ali's greatness. I got to study and feel and embody the soul of the man. From the foundations of Islam and the strength of his Muslim faith and his life to the beautiful wake that he always leaves in his magnificent path." -Will Smith

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"All of the years, all of the times together, I've enjoyed them," Cosell said. "You're a very special man. With a very special meaning to all of the American people. I congratulate you. It's my honor. Your name is Muhammad Ali." - Howard Cosell

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Chris “Young King” Pearson Written By Camela Douglas

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hris “Young King” Pearson was born in Dayton, Ohio on November 12, 1990. Currently in the junior middleweight division, Pearson signed a managerial contract with Al Haymon to launch his professional career. Haymon’s stable of fighters include, Adrien Broner, Erislandy Lara, Amir Khan, and Marcos Maidana. A southpaw with a 93-8 amateur record, Pearson was the 2011 U.S. National Champion, and the 2009 Police Athletic League National Champion. He has beaten four former Olympians, including Brazil’s Yamaguichi Florentino, a veteran of 151 fights, and Bakhyt Sarsekbayev of Kazakhstan, the 2008 Beijing Games welterweight gold medalist. Pearson spent two and a half months in Los Angeles fighting for the L.A. Matadors, a team composed of select amateurs who competed in the newly formed World Series of Boxing. Pearson’s professional debut came on November 26, 2011 at

the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. Matched against Steven Chadwick on this undercard bout, he quickly established a reputation for himself as he KO’d Chadwick in less than two minutes in the first round. Pearson broke the proverbial seal and has been unstoppable ever since. He KO’d Angel Hernandez on July 21, 2012 in round two. He did it again on August 24, 2012 to Christian Nava in round four, and once more to Jeremy Marts in round one on November 10, 2012 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. His dominance continued into 2013, when Pearson TKO’d Arturo Crespin in round six, Josh Williams in round one, and KO’d Acacio Joao Ferreira at the 1:44 mark, in the first round, at the Little Creek Casino Resort in Washington, DC. Not even to the surprise of his detractors, Pearson bolted into 2014 with the same excellence and passion for the sport. On February 28, 2014 he earned his 11th win by way of split decision in a laborious battle with Lanardo Tyner at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino in New York. The Unbeaten Trotwood junior middleweight (12-0 Pr o, 16-0 Combined), fought on the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao undercard where he defeated Said El Harrak in a lopsided 10-round decision. Pearson is currently signed to Mayweather Promotions.

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Pearson is a proud father to his young daughter, and cherishes spending as much time with her as he can. When asked what he’d be doing if he wasn’t boxing, Pearson says he’d be pursuing a career as a professional basketball player. Putting it all on the line, and putting in the work to be the greatest, are creeds that drive him in his life. Al Mitchell currently trains Pearson, and with his undefeated record, no one can argue that he is poised to have a long and storied professional boxing career.■

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She’s Young | She’s Dope | She’s Different

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hen a brand new rock band enters the music scene, it’s easy to visualize an all-male group with black painted fingernails and dark make-up. I mean, who doesn’t love vapored fog, guitars, and climaxed vocals? This style of rock music makes our heads bang, feet jump, and fingers snap. Similar, are the horns signal made popular by Ronnie James Dio & Gene Simmons. Today, popular rock music has evolved. Our complex world has diversified it by infusing a little bit of this and that. No longer is there one set stereotypical way or a certain yellow brick road to travel in order to successfully fulfill one’s passion…and this newbie rocker gets that. She’s young, she’s dope, and she’s different!

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Meet Samiah! She’s a die-hard fan herself of all eras of rock music. She grew up listening to classic artists such as Aerosmith, Incubus, and Pink Floyd. The powerful lyrics sang by these artists are responsible for helping Samiah conquer her fears and dismiss the myths told by many, that she wasn’t good enough. Born in southeast Washington, D.C., where neighboring crimes were very high, these negative mindsets were everywhere. Samiah continued to press through them all, performing to popular music and traveling with a troupe for 5 years. However, the light at the end of the tunnel illuminated when her grandmother encouraged her in the summer of 2012 to audition for one of the most well-known music schools in the country. When Samiah was accepted, it brought self-confirmation, and immediately she began to flourish. The transition from being shy and reserved to being happy and confident, ignited her to become who she is today….a black girl who rocks!

How It All Came About What you will love about this girl and her band is that they don’t evade the essence of who they are, nor are they afraid to venture into other territories and own them. Together, they are lighting up the scene with their single, “Forever” off their Risen album. The single was impressively written by Samiah in just shy of 2 days. Her producer hand-picked several band members to play on a totally different project, at the time. Still, a singer/ songwriter was needed to complete the line-up. When the producer heard a small clip of Samiah’s unfinished tune, the producer had Samiah complete the song, and all focus was shifted. “When I heard the clip…I knew she had it and that she didn’t realize she was ready. It was like a switch went off telling me to deviate from my own plan to

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helping Samiah execute hers.” Immediately the producer halted production on the previous project, and flew Samiah, a student at Berkley College of Music in Boston, MA, back to her hometown in the DMV, introducing her to her new band. “Forever” was recorded analog on a 2 inch 24-track tape at the Omega Recording Studios, in Rockville, MD, while using the vintage Neve VR60 console with MartinSound Flying Faders. The studio is run by Edward Peterson who called the song “a hit.” It was a no brainer that a decision to round up multiple singles with Samiah was the right move.

Get into the Sound Samiah introduces “Forever” with a dual note guitar intro, then transitions beautifully into lightly toned alto vocals. The lead guitar maintains the rock sound, but the remaining musical elements subtly emerge into a synergy of mixed-genre instrumentation. It reminds you of Paramore collaborating with B.B. King. “Christina,” another single inked by the songwriter, is a meaningful pop ballad with hints of soul from the background vocals. The lyrics are so intriguing that rewinding the song back to ascertain the meaning is a pleasant must, giving us room to imagine. But, the single to watch out for is the title cut called “Risen”! “Risen” is completely 100% rock and it kicks major assets. This gear shifting makes for an expected great album. It has lots of variety from an artist who’d never previously written a song nor performed her own material. Her look, her language, and her sound makes for a great trajectory in this business. Get into it (her, her band, and their sound)…or we WILL not have a problem saying…“I told you so.”■

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About Samiah (Pronounced: Suh-my-yah)


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Rick Gallot: Let’s get to work

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rambling State University is The Place Where Everybody is Somebody, and I am grateful to GSU for preparing me for a time such as this. I had offers to attend other universities, including Dartmouth, an Ivy League school. However, knew I wanted to go to law school and fulfill a childhood dream of being a member of the Grambling State University World Famed Tiger Marching Band. GSU was my choice. As the incoming GSU president, I am humbled and I am grateful to the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors and Interim ULS President Dan Reneau for the trust they have put in me. I was not thinking about being a politician or a college president when I walked the campus as a student. A lot has happened since I was a student Tiger. I’ve known – and supported – each GSU president since I met and got to know President Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones as a kid. Jones

up areas where we are weak. Higher education in Louisiana faces challenges unlike any time in our past. The relationships I’ve built over the past 15 years with the Gov. John Bel Edwards, the legislature, congressional leaders and the corporate sector will serve Grambling State University well. What might be most in my favor, and to the university’s benefit, is that I know the Grambling community and the community knows me. My wife, Christy, joined me when I interviewed for the job with the ULS board in Baton Rouge on Tuesday. Like me, Christy is a Grambling State University graduate. Both my parents are Grambling graduates. The four of us are life members of the Grambling University National Alumni Association. Throughout my years of public service, I have developed a skill set and reputation for being a consensus and coalition builder. I will engage all of our various stakeholders to harness

was our much beloved second president, serving after founder Charles Adams. We all knew him as “Prez,” and he was our president from 1936 until 1977. Like Prez, I want to be a long-serving Grambling State University Tiger-in-Chief. First and foremost, Grambling State University is an academic institution. Without a strong academic foundation at GSU, I would not have become as successful as I have been as an attorney or as a legislator. That academic foundation will help me be successful as president. My lifelong roots in the Grambling community, combined with my record of serving our university and community give me a head start in my new job. As an attorney based in Ruston, a Grambling city councilman, state representative and state senator, I have the community, government and leadership the institution needs at this critical time. The core GSU brand remains strong. People know and respect Grambling State University, largely because of our football legacy with the internationally famous Eddie G. Robinson and our fabulous marching band. We are not going to run away from something that makes us strong, and better. We will build on that foundation, emphasis our academic strengths and shore

our energy, ideas, love and commitment to our university. Our focus on recruitment, retention and graduation must be unlike any other time in our history. Our students must know that they are our number one priority. My record of service to our university has been visible. During my years of service in the legislature, capital improvements totaled more than $100 million. The Eddie Robinson Museum, Fred Hobdy Assembly Center, Conrad Hutchinson Performing Arts Center, campus wide student housing replacement, and Tiger Express, the campus food court, are a few of the state budget, capital outlay and third-party financing projects I have been directly or indirectly involved with seeing through to fruition. I got my academic foundation at Grambling State, and we will strengthen our academic offerings and standing. My school, our school, needs a leader, a smart, savvy, down-toearth, roll-up-his-sleeves and get-to-work-on-the-first-day leader. I am that leader, and I’m ready to get to work to make the place Where Everybody is Somebody even better. Let’s get to work.■

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Rick Gallot: President of Grambling State University


HEALTH & WELLNESS


Beautiful Wedding Hair By Dr. Linda Amerson

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products to give your hair great shine, more body, eliminate flaky, dry, oily and itchy scalps, and heal all scalp lesions.■ All questions and inquiries should be forwarded to world renowned Trichologist, Dr. Amerson. We will give our 3rd Cruise With a Purpose scholarship in September 2016. Contact us at 817 265 8854 www.hairandscalpessentials.com Twitter: @ScalpDoctor FB: /Hair and Scalp Essentials FB:/Ask the Hair and Scalp Doctor Radio Show

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magine this...Sheila had been dating Sam for two years exclusively. She was wondering what was taking Sam so long to propose. Sam had been asking her for over six months, various questions about her views on family. Then one night to her surprise, Sam took her to dinner and had the waiter position the ring on her dessert. Sheila started jumping in her chair with excitement! Sam got on one knee and asked Sheila for her hand in marriage…she said YES I WILL! Sheila was getting M-A-R-R-I-E-D! Wedding season is right around the corner! Many women, who have been in serious relationships, often wonder when and how their handsome knight will pop the question. Some men choose an intimate setting, public location, or even a weekend getaway, just to name a few. Do not stress about it ladies! I would like to share information for brides-to-be that will help reduce stress, improve overall health, provide nutritional tips, and help obtain happy, healthy hair and scalp. There are two common types of stress which may contribute to alopecia areata, trichotillomania, or telogen effluvium. Put simply, your hair may become smooth and patchy. You may develop a compulsion to pull your hair out, or your hair may shed excessively. Manageable stress gives us a zest for life, releases creativity, and generates excitement by challenging our abilities. However, stress overload that may lead to health problems and alopecia may occur. If you are trying to do too much in too little time, you are functioning in permanent overdrive. Cope with stress by creating a balance in your life. Make time for yourself, practice time management, and learn to say no. Pay attention to your body’s dietary needs, get enough sleep, and if possible, get regular massages or practice meditation. Lastly, if necessary, take a stress management course. After your stress is under control, exercise 3-5 days weekly for heart and cardiovascular health, and eat a healthy diet. Nutritional deficiencies are major contributors to healthy hair, skin and overall image. For example, excessive fried foods clog your arteries, causes an over active sebaceous excretion, which contributes to an oily scalp, and skin. Spicy foods consumed regularly, will also increase an oily scalp and skin. Also, did you know that a lack of fruit and vegetables in your diet will diminish your digestive system, and causes hair to grow much slower? Nutritional absorption is information we can share with our polarized microscope, as well as your scalp health with our tricholoscope. Lack of adequate water will contribute to dry skin, dry hair and scalp, and a sluggish digestive system. Walking down the aisle with ‘Beautiful Hair’ is usually the job of a licensed hairstylist. Whether you have extensions added or choose to be au-natural, the preparation process should begin months before. Brides-to-be should seek the expertise of a doctor of Trichology to assist with hair regrowth and scalp issues for her big day. Furthermore, we recommend using our proven great


www.fortune5water.com


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FITNESS TRENDS

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Tara Rigsbee: From Struggle to Strength By Camela L. Douglass, M.S. ED.

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together. She lifted her head, breathed deeply, and completed the rest of the set. This was a pivotal moment in her life, as well as mine. We were both empowered to live a purpose driven life.■ The tears, pain, and recovery, inspired Tara to write her first book, “The Day Life Changed: The Bloom of a Butterfly.” She shares the power of determination, prayer, and support while turning a tragedy into a triumph. Purchase her inspirational book at: www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w

FITNESS TRENDS

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owadays, everybody and their mama are working out. The fitness industry continues to evolve with fad diets, trends, and infomercials, promising to get you better. As a personal trainer, it’s important for me to find out why a new client wants to start a new fitness program. I ask them three questions: 1) Do you want to be healthy? 2) Do you want to look good in your clothes? Or, 3) Do you want to look good outside of your clothes? Ultimately, the expected answer is to be healthy. Truthfully, most people want to look good in and out of their clothes. Not Tara Rigsbee. She just wanted to live! Initially, Tara came to me with a goal of getting healthy, and obtaining a certain look. Within the first week of training, that goal was quickly altered after Tara was in a terrible motorcycle accident. She suffered severely. She had a lung contusion, eight fractured ribs, a bruised shoulder, fractured pelvis in five areas, and a bad case of road rash on her shoulder. Immediately, her fitness goals changed from wanting to look a certain way to wanting to live. After months of healing, rehabilitation, depression, and fear, Tara made her way back to the gym. Before the accident, our last session ended with ball slams, box jumps, sprints, and lifting heavy weights. I saw a totally different Tara during our first session after the accident. She slowly scooted through the gym door pushing a walker, but her strength was in her smile. She was excited to return to the gym; she was excited to be alive. We embraced each other, discussed her limitations, and went to work. I’ll never forget the first time she picked up the five-pound dumbbells. She began to cry. She felt weak, defeated, and still broken. She could’ve quit at that moment, but she only took a long pause to gather herself. I swallowed hard and told her to trust herself, trust God, and trust that we would get through this


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The Ali Influence: Boxing for Fitness

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By Camela L. Douglass, M.S. ED

oxing is one of the oldest and most celebrated sports. Whenever boxing was mentioned, most were watching it, not participating in it. In the minds of spectators, ‘floating like a butterfly and stinging like a bee’ was only for Muhammad Ali. Shadow boxing with friends was the closest thing to boxing that anyone could experience. Now, boxing has become one of the most popular workouts for the average individual. New franchises, such as TITLE Boxing Club, are opening up all over the country, providing the fitness community with an effective alternative to getting healthy and fit. Boxing’s popularity has opened the door for the fitness community to walk through, and experience the power of the ring. Globally, professional boxing has been a phenomenon, while amateur boxing is exploding nationally. As a sport, it requires a high level of skill, artistry, and athletic prowess. However, as a fitness activity, your competitor is yourself. Everyone’s an athlete, and the goal is to improve your health and get into great shape. It’s not to knock out your opponent. Commoners are allured by the challenge, the aggression, and the overall ultimate workout experience. Boxing for fitness, allows you the benefits of a boxing workout, without the blows to the head. There are many benefits to boxing. It improves your endurance, power, discipline, aerobic and anaerobic fitness, and coordination. In comparison to other fitness programs, boxing stimulates all of your muscle groups, and challenges your mind. ■ Top Ten Benefits of Boxing 1. Burns Fat 2. Increases Muscle Tone 3. Builds Strong Bones and Ligaments 4. Improves Core Stability 5. Improves Power and Strength 6. Improves Muscle Endurance 7. Improves Coordination 8. Decreases Stress 9. Builds Confidence and Self-Esteem 10. Improves Cardiovascular System

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FITNESS SPOTLIGHT

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Depending on the workout program, you can burn at least 500-900 calories from the beginning to the end of a session, not to mention the confidence you gain and the stress you relieve. At the end of the day, you’re fighting to beat your biggest competition—YOU. No confrontations, just RESULTS. Camela Douglass, M.S. ED., C.P.T. is an Educator, Life Coach, and Fitness Enthusiast. She is the founder and C.E.O. of Mo Better Me Lifestyle Change Program in Columbus, Ohio. For booking info, email mobetterme1@gmail.com


HANK STEWART’S 15 ANNUAL WHITE LINEN AFFAIR

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FROM MY EYES By: Beverly Hill (Shelley)

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attended Hank Stewart's Annual White Linen Affair again this year. Yellow was the accent color for this year’s 15 th annual event. Just being in the midst of all the white and yellow was like being bathed in bright sunshine and fluffy clouds. If you don't know, Hank Stewart’s events are to support the Stewart Foundation. As usual, Hank Stewart (President), Gwen Mason (Executive Director), and their staff executed a wonderful event. Ms. Mason stated, “The foundation is a youth leadership development program designed to strengthen the whole child… mind, body and soul. The foundation does so by the enrichment of its quarterly initiative: Health and Financial Wellness, Community Service, Education Advocacy, and Social Awareness programs.” During the 3-day White Linen Affair, there are always varieties of activities to choose from…something for everyone! This year a new activity was added kicking off Friday’s festivities. It was the first Celebrity Golf Tournament hosted by Sam Crenshaw and Rashan Ali. After the tournament, in celebration of Hank Stewart and twenty-five years of family, friends and the foundation, there was a ribbon cutting ceremony that included an honorary champagne toast! The elegant Gwen Mason was the Mistress of ceremony with remarks by Tommy Ford, best known as Tommy from the Martin sitcom. This year's White Linen Affair impacted me in a way that was much more enlightening than prior years. It elevated my awareness of just how important Hank Stewart’s fundraising events are to the success of our communities. This year the focus was more on what the foundation represents. Not only was this a fun time but also a learning experience for me. I was able to get a first-hand look at the youth and the remarkable things they are doing, coupled with the impressive changes in their lives as a result of their program participation. A documentary was shown, Through My Lens (executive producer, Tommy Ford) had a profound impact on me, as it depicted the four-month journey of twenty-five young men from all over the city of Atlanta. Half of the young men were bullies while the other half victims. The question and goal were to see if bullies and victims of bullying can be transformed if you change their lens, change their focus, exposure and vision…could they be changed? During the program, taken from a well-known proverb, it was stated several times, “without vision the people perish.” The project was a success with approximately nine of the young men present to share their stories, the positive results that were realized and their gratitude for being a part of the program. After the documentary, we were privileged to also view Tommy Ford’s movie premier, Conflict of Interest about love, lies, betrayal, and truth! Of course, there are always parties, concerts, and the red carpet! The Friday night concert was hosted by comedian, Rodney Perry and spoken word poet, Dichotomy. Featured was singer Tony Terry, Five Men on Stools: The Next Generation, Little G. from the music group Silk and Terisa Griffin from The

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Thurmond. The former Dekalb County School Superintendent and CEO hopeful of Dekalb County, Mr. Thurmond, took a school system from $14 million deficit to a $92 million surplus in just two years. He drove the point home by continually emphasizing that we, as parents, need to be ‘present’ in our children's lives. Sean Mulkey’s live art provided us a special treat. He creates works of art during the events and performances and afterward makes them available for purchase. It was amazing to watch this talented man. I felt as if I were a part of the creative process as the images came to life right before my eyes while simultaneously enjoying the festivities. Sunday may have been the final day of the weekend-long affair, but it was far from being over. There was so much more in store. Early Sunday morning, it was time to wake up to the White Linen Workout hosted by Celebrity Trainer Kenya Crooks and Zumba with Neeco Bourgeois. Then there was Inspirational Sunday featured by J u d g e P e n n y Br o wn Reynolds bringing an inspirational message. Sunday Brunch brought a gracefully elegant finale to a wonderful 3-day affair! The room was intricately decorated, and the tables were dressed with white linen tablecloths embellished with the themed accent color of yellow. The brunch buffet was quite enticing and tasty. For our music entertainment, Jazz Guitarist and Singer Norman Brown was featured along with Saxophonist Jasmine Ghent, hosted by Joey Sommerville. What a beautiful ending to another eventful Hank Stewart White Linen Affair. This event should never be missed. I love and respect Hank Stewart and all that he represents. We must take responsibility for our young people; we are the village that makes the difference. ■

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Voice! I found enjoyment in the red carpet time, taking photos with celebrities and listening to the interviews. To my surprise, I was asked to be interviewed! Jackie Penrice from Live from the ATL wanted me to share some of my challenges, how I overcame them and how I became a celebrity Journalist. That was my first time being interviewed, and it was on the red carpet! Later, I was interviewed by Renata Brown, Executive Director of GANSPA Awards. I gave statements for her “Genius is Common” campaign. As she stated, “There is a genius seed living in each of us.” What a red carpet experience! Saturday was a day to remember. The young people had an affair, the Youth White Linen Banquet!! I thought it was wonderful for them to be included in experiencing their special event! Then there was a cooking demonstration with the famous Chef “G” Garvin. This man is not only a chef extraordinaire, but he was hilariously funny! The smell of the dishes he prepared made me salivate (laughing). From those beautiful aromas, I could almost feel the flavors dancing in rhythm with my taste buds. Now on to Saturday night with Hank’s Muse Concert, award presentations, and the Bramer Leon Couture Fashion Show! This show is always spectacular with models wearing uniquely designed fashions by Mr. Leon! During the award ceremony one of Hank Stewart’s Advisory Board members, Cecilia HoustonTorrence presented the Xernona Clayton “It” award to her mentor Juanita Baranco for her continued work in the community. Mrs. Baranco and her husband are the owners of Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead. Mrs. Baranco’s question to the audience was, “How do you save a community or a nation?” The answer, “one youth at a time!” The second award, the Joseph E. Lowery “Courageous” award was presented to Michael


Ask Attorney Mo!

The Connection between Charity Work and Business

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his year we have seen the death of many famous icons, notably Prince, and now most recently Muhammad Ali. A common link between the two was their charitable work to improve their communities. Both contributed to a number of organizations, and helped establish and fund others. They chose to be profitable and contribute, but there are a number of ways to give back. How you give back is up to you. You can establish a charity and do good works. Or you can use the profits and resources of your for-profit company to give back.

NONPROFIT OR FOR-PROFIT

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Entrepreneurs with a serious social conscious when starting their companies often struggle with the decision to establish their organizations as nonprofit or for-profit, in order to accomplish their goals. I always remind my clients when we are discussing making this decision that both organizations are companies, and must be run in the same professional and diligent manner. Determining which entity to use requires one to also realize that nonprofits unrelated business income can threaten its nonprofit status, or a for-profit might need help managing its philanthropy. Making that decision also boils down to understanding how the organization sources its capital. A for-profit can raise money through private investors, for which it must give equity or dividends to shareholders, and the investors expect a return. Nonprofits must seek donations from individuals and corporation,s and possibly the government in some cases. Donors seek a “social return” on their investment, expecting the funds to be utilized in the community as stated by the organization. Nonprofits remain tax exempt and eligible for foundation grants. For-profits can make money that can be reinvested into the company but also can be profitable to the investors, with no limits on the amount of profits or where the profits have to be utilized. Nonprofits have to reinvest 80-90% of profits back into the organization. For-profits can raise unrestricted funds from angels and venture capitalists and make tax-deductible

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LEGAL TRENDS

donations to nonprofits.

L3C In a blog I previously wrote, I discussed the new hybrid corporation called the low-profit, limited liability company or L3C. The L3C is a type of nonprofit and for-profit organization, a new type of limited liability company which is designed to attract private investments and philanthropic capital in venture designed to provide a social benefit. Unlike the standard LLC, the L3C has an explicit primary charitable mission and only a secondary profit concern. But unlike a charity, the L3C is free to distribute the profits to its members/owners. Downside is L3C legislation has only passed in a few states L3C’s are a way for companies that need to make a profit stay afloat and keep their social missions at the forefront. However, since the IRS has not confirmed that an L3C can be an official recipient of foundation funds, even with the legislation they may not be able to receive nonprofit status.

TAX IMPLICATIONS Each entity is taxed as if it is independent of the other. Nonprofits are still exempt from federal income tax, as well as taxes in states and localities in which their tax-exempt status is approved. For-profits are taxed according to their corporate structure.

FOR-PROFIT CORPORATIONS CONTRIBUTING TO THEIR COMMUNITIES Entrepreneurs interested in making a profit, and not having the time and energy to establish and run a nonprofit, still have the desire to contribute to the communities they do business in. There are numerous ways for mindful entrepreneurs to give back to their communities, and in turn build relationships in the communities and contribute to improving social problems. Corporations can partner with community organi-

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016


zations that align with their businesses; fitness centers can work with communities offering free classes for underprivileged children to combat obesity, accounting firms can work in community centers offering financial literacy classes, law firms can offer free or low costs will drafting for seniors, etc. The advantage of the for-profit is the obvious availability of funds and resources to contribute to the community, which generally has limited resources and needs what the company brings to it. Community service work not only improves relationships, but it empowers the disadvantaged helping them to improve their lives. Making social impact requires innovative thinking, not just in the products and services brought into the community, but also in terms of organizational structures and mechanisms for raising capital. Social entrepreneurs challenge how business is done by effectively tackling problems in the community. How you choose to contribute to your community as a business depends on the type of structure that best allows you to achieve your mission. Additionally, a measure of your success is a focus on your company’s impact in the community, not just profits. The service or product the organization is offering has a significant impact on the problem it aims to solve. Businesses innovate, which has consistently made the world a better place. Businesses create thousands of jobs, improve the quality of goods, services and lives, and ultimately raise the standards of living. By making the right choices for you, your company and your mission, you can change the world.â–

Monica A. Teasley, Esq. 404-377-5512 Fax 404-377-5515 www.teasleylawgroup.com 5300 Memorial Drive, Suite 134 Stone Mountain, Georgia 30083 mteasley@teasleylawgroup.com The-Teasley-Group-LLC Teasleylawgroup The_teasley_law_group

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LEGAL TRENDS

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EXPERIENCED / EFFECTIVE / EFFICIENT


TRISH STANDLEY

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rish Standley, a native of a small town called Kokomo Indiana; Trish is the youngest of six siblings raised by a single mother. Although her father was estranged, Trish says “it was the best gift imaginable, because when her father wasn’t engaged in her life, his family was.” Trish began her singing career at her home church in Indiana. She recalls how her first solo ignited something within her that would change the trajectory of how she embraced her gift as a Singer. Subsequently, after relocating to Atlanta, GA; Trish formed a children’s choir and served as Lead Director, this was the start of her dreams being manifested. Trish believes there are three elements in life that a person must adhere to, it’s the very essence of the woman she has become today. Those elements are her upbringing, education, and self-esteem. She pays homage to her lovely mother, the woman who inspired, supported and challenged her every step of her journey. Trish continues to be inspired by the support and unconditional love from her husband Ed Standley of sixteen years; within that union, they parent a sixteen-year-old daughter named India . According to Trish “Nothing in life just happens”. She believes that God will not impart anything within you that he is not willing to develop. Therefore, be sensitive to his voice and his call. Trish recalls a time when she allowed fear to dominate her decision-making ability

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National Gospel Recording Artist “A voice of hope in a hurting generation” By Tina Williams

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016

show Style with Trysh ~ connect with All things Trish by visiting http://www.trishstandley.com “a weekly online radio show which ministers to women not only in the areas of current fashion but also in boosting, inspiring and educating ladies about the importance of healthy self-esteem. “Style with Trysh” speaks to the wholeness of the woman.” Trish certainly delivers hope to women in a time where both hope and faith are needed by way of her abundant gifts and talents.■

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causing her to feel as if she wasn’t pretty enough or good enough; she even felt like given up throwing in the towel of surrender. Unfortunately, this was a constant battle within her mental psyche leaving her feeling handicap to her emotions. Trish recalls how the turning point in her life came after attending a TD Jakes women’s conference which changed her life from fear to triumph. Trish recollects TD Jakes saying to a crowd of thousands, “You’ve been told all your life that you are this and that, at this very moment I need you to ask God to reveal who you really are.” Trish explains how that was all the confirmation she needed. God spoke to her spirit, and her life has never been the same since that moment. The awakening of her love for writing and singing began to soar beyond her greatest expectations. This new found love afforded her the opportunity to open up for Gospel Pioneer singer and songwriter Ms. Dorothy Norwood. Trish has also shared the stage with National Gospel Recording Artist Earnest Pugh. Trish is set to release a new project called “No One Else” on October 15th of this year. The CD will be available everywhere digital is sold. The CD Release project is slated to take place at Kingdom Builder’s Covenant Church in Atlanta, Georgia. Contemporary Gospel Singer Ms. Standley’s awards and accomplishments consist of the following: Won, Urban Contemporary Female Artist of the Year, and CD of the Year. In addition to being nominated by Rhythm of Gospel, as a two time nominated female artist of the year. Trish was also nominated Female Artist on behalf of Atlanta Gospel Choice Awards. Aside from Trish’s noteworthy accolades, she has shared her gift on the “Dr. Bobby Jones presents”, “Babbie Mason”, “Atlanta Live” (Channel 57) and “TBN” (Akron, OH). In addition to the aforementioned, Gospel Recording Artist Trish Standley is the host of the weekly


“There’s a Lion in the Room, and my Presence Threatens you” – Shawn

Bayonne


Shawn Bayonne

Author | Poet | Inspirational Speaker Written By: Tina Williams

for our elders. Bayonne’s process is unconventional. Some pieces he writes in hours; some have taken days, even weeks to complete, an often cathartic endeavor that culminates into poetic expression that courses through your sensibilities the way blood pulses through hearts. His purpose and journey towards enlightenment, sel f actualization and professional growth, is something Bayonne is passionate about. He is currently working on creating and producing his own television show, and plans on developing a poetry showcase in Houston. He has also published his first book, "Intimacy Unchained," the first in a series of poetry books. Bayonne has many projects on the horizon, and he motivates himself by reciting a single original verse: “If I challenge myself to be better at all the things I’m not good at, I’ll eventually become good at everything I do.” He is well on his way to fulfilling that goal. Upcoming events for Bayonne include: a performance for Jen.e.sis Poetry & Arts show in Chester Pennsylvania- August 13th 2016 - his official book release for Intimacy UnchainedAugust 24th 2016 - Kings of the Mic- December 2016, and he is currently planning an appearance in Atlanta, Georgia in fall of 2016.■ For more information about Shawn Bayonne or to book him for a show or speaking engagement, please contact: Shawn Bayonne 1-888-550-5808 thelion@midaspoetry.com Twitter: Midas Touch Poetry @midastouchpoetry Facebook: Midas Touch Poetry Twitter & YouTube: Midas Touch Poetry Web Site: www.midaspoetry.com

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HAW N BAYO NNE , a.k.a. “King Midas,” spoken word artist from Houston, Texas, gets his name from one of the most recognized characters in Greek Mythology. He is a symbol of power endowed with a potent gift; it is no coincidence that spoken word’s golden child boldly bears the mythical figure’s name Shawn “Midas Touch” Bayonne. Bayonne was born and raised in Natchitoches, Louisiana. His morals, values and principles reflect the richness and ideals of the French territory. As a result, he has grown into a forceful, unflinching artist - a talent whose Southern roots run deeper than the Red River, and whose intellect and cunning wash over his audience like its currents. There are only a few poets around the globe who measure up to Bayonne’s mastery of prose, rhythm, aesthetic symbolism, form and convention. Shawn’s poetry is infused with vision, insight and truth that belies his years. He is inspired by the wisdom of the ancestry that flows through his veins, and consumed with a visceral desire to express his creativity, and reach those who otherwise would never experience the culture and power of poetry. Bayonne has performed to sold-out crowds at Houston’s Warehouse Live and Poetry Lounge, and at renowned venues and colleges across the country. His signature piece, “There’s a Lion in the Room,” is delivered with such ferocity and passion, it is as if he wears his beating heart on his sleeve for all to see. His performance lifts audiences to their feet as it awakens images of masculinity and dominance tinged with pain and vulnerability… the human condition black men across America endure. A great deal of Bayonne’s body of work conveys similar realism. He tells stories that have been undervalued and overlooked. Topics explore the cycle of broken families that continues to unwind uncontrollably and injustices against black people. A native son of the religious South, he imparts verses that conjure up vivid images of spirituality and promote respect


From Under A Bridge The Blossom Lafyetta Butler Story By Pam Ryans

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orn Blossom Lafyetta Butler in New Smyrna Beach, FL on January 15, 1966 to a teenage mom. As a teenage mom, she made a decision to allow her grandmother to raise her beautiful daughter, whom she named Blossom. Being raised by a loving great-grandmother who believed in some unique home remedies, those remedies later developed detrimental habits for Blossom. She recalls drinking a Colt 45 beer as a cure for ring-worms. She states “I was excited when Mama (great-grandma) called me Monkey (Blossom’s nickname) and said “Go get your medicine”. It took two hands to open the refrigerator door. When I finally got it opened, there was a can with a horse on it, Colt 45. Looking back, Blossom remembers feeling warm and fuzzy, but still had the ringworms. Later Blossom’s mom married and told her that it was time for her to come home. It was a bitter-sweet moment, because it was always just her and her great-grandmother and now she was to live with others and would have to share. Living with her mom, step-dad, and siblings, Blossom was often confused, angry because of sharing, and yet, happy to have playmates. Things began to change when Blossom became more relaxed living in this new environment. Her step-dad would treat her differently around others than in private. Blossom recalls, private times of him tell her that she had pretty legs. But around others calling her big lips. As time progressed, he began foundling her and that made her flash back to age five when one of her greatgrandmother’s boarders exposed his “worm” and asked her to kiss it. Blossom did as many did during that time and did not tell. She recalls saying to her stepdad as he touched her, “I’m gonna tell my mama” and he laughed and said “no one will believe

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you”. That statement stuck with Blossom and shut her mouth for years to come. This inappropriate behavior continued until age 16. At 16 Blossom got pregnant on purpose by her then boyfriend who promised to marry her and get her out of the house. The child was born and the boyfriend immediately abandoned her for someone else. Later, Blossom married a military guy and living in Fort Braggs (Fayetteville, NC) birthed another son. The marriage dwindled and Blossom left the relationship, but didn’t get divorced. Blossom started dating another man and later birthed a third son. By age 23, she was the mother of three sons. Still yearning for love and looking for a true sense of belonging, Blossom met a man whom she explains trusted. In spite of a deep secret of drug abuse due to crack cocaine she explained her love for him as deep. Blossom shares how he began beating her and how she fell prey to the thought, I can’t beat him so I’ll join him. She soon began smoking crack cocaine as well. She developed a drug addiction which ultimately led her to become an “unfit” mother. Confused and disengaged she made a devastating decision to give up her sons to her mother and great-grandmother. By this time Blossoms life began to take a dramatic downward spiral. In spite of the love and teachings her grandmother raised her with, Blossom soon found herself imprisoned, in and out of rehab and mental institutions, homeless and engaging in homosexual activities. This series if events and lifestyle resulted in Blossom resorting to life under a bridge in the back seat of her car. Blossom recalls surrendering to that life in June of 2004 as

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If you would like to donate to this worthy cause, please contact Blossom via email blos2white@yahoo.com, phone 305-7538164 or Facebook @ Blossom Rogers. Blossom believes in the scripture Jeremiah 29:11 stating that “no matter what your past looks like, God has a great plan for your future” (para-phrased). From Under A Bridge is in negotiations with Elijah Wells Films, Inc. in Miami, FL and will be featured as a short film. God has brought Blossom from under a bridge to drive over the bridge to her dreams. Stay tuned! The best is yet to come. To God be the Glory!■

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she sat in a crack-house in Florida. Blossom took to pen and paper as she wrote a letter to God confessing being sick and tired of being sick and tired. She described how she smoked and wrote and smoked and wrote. At one point, she shares how she told a lady who walked in the room how she was leaving and never smoking crack again. She recalls the lady laughing at her. At that moment, Blossom made a bold decision to put the note in her purse and walk away from drug abuse, forever. Blossom checked herself in to a rehab center in Miami, FL where she received the knowledge of how to stay clean and sober. She went back to school and became a National Certified Medical Assistant. She later met another man who would become her second husband. After marrying, they moved to Tuscaloosa, Alabama where she presently resides. Living in Tuscaloosa, Blossom went back to school and became a Certified Drug Counselor. The second marriage also resulted in a divorce. In spite of her failed marriages Blossom never gave up on remaining clean and sober. This June made 12 years of being clean and sober for Blossom. For Blossom her lengthy dreads are a symbol of her 12 years of deliverance. Blossom is presently the author of 3 books: From “Under A Bridge I and II”, and her latest book, “And They Laughed” because the world will teach you the difference between laughing with you and at you. She is the CEO and Founder of From Under A Bridge, Inc., the TV host of her own talk show, The Blossom Show (WEPH Channel 49 in Tupelo, MS), a motivational speaker and facilitator of a Drug Rehab program (Zion and Recovery). She has spoken at the University of Alabama, TBN Christian Network, Great Day Tuscaloosa with Kip Tyner, and many other great venues. Habitat for Humanities of Tuscaloosa, Alabama has donated land, where she is presently seeking funding to build ‘From Under A Bride Safe Haven Home for Women’. From Under A Bridge, Inc. is a 501c3, nonprofit agency. This home will house 6 women as they journey to recover from drug and alcohol addiction and abuse, while acquiring learning skills to leave clean and sober independently.


By Georgette Correa

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on’t Let Life Stop You From Living springs from the fact that life can be challenging, defeating, and unfair at times. As a child, our dreams are full of magic and wonder. We cannot see any reason why we cannot achieve all that we desire. Ask any child what they want to be, do, and have, and they will pour out what may seem like a Christmas list. They don’t think about time, energy, obstacles, or reasons why they can’t do it – all they know is that they want what they want. As we mature, we begin to see the world differently because our experiences show us the contrast of life. We begin to feel the sting of our relationships – whether with our parents, siblings, lovers, friends, – but, most of all with ourselves. This is where the imbalance is introduced and causes inner-conflict. Although we know life can be fun and fulfilling at times, we’ve also become familiar with disappointment, fear – and well, tragedy. Tragedy presents itself in different forms; in addition, tragedy is relative, as are all things. What I may deem tragic, another may view as necessary and easy to overcome. In Chapter One, The Makings of You, I dissect the importance of knowing who you


Here’s a quote from my book, about my book: “This is what this book is about: that coming to know–beyond belief, that you, and only you, have the power to change your reality. If you don’t like what you’ve created thus far, then change it. It’s really not as difficult as you might think. When you believe something to be true, you react to that belief not only in your thoughts, but in your actions. That belief dictates your life. It causes you to do and say things that you wouldn’t otherwise do. So, do you see how important your beliefs are? Do you see how picky you must be about the act of believing? We all have a choice; the power of choice is limitless! After all, how did you get where you are now? You chose it. Whether you chose it deliberately – on purpose; or haphazardly – not on purpose, the choice was indeed made by you. In addition, please know that no choice is choice.” “No choice is choice.” Wow! I say wow because I’ve gained the power to come to know the significance of what we allow in our space. Choice is like putting your stamp of approval on a person, a place, or a thing. Your stamp of approval is an invitation to your world…yes! This is how serious our choices are. You see, when you choose something or someone, that means that your energy and focus is now on that. With that being said, you are now entangled with it on many levels. So, I say this: think, feel, and take all possible choices to Spirit before making a selection. After all, THIS IS YOUR LIFE, own it. I wish I would have fully embraced those words when I

was growing up. Most go through life following another’s standards, beliefs, and dreams. Wow! At times you see what another is doing and you want to do that…but, the crazy thing is, it may not be what is good for you. You may not be as good at it as they are because it is their anointing. What is your anointing my friend? What are you naturally good at? What do you love being and doing? I say this: follow your own Yellow-BrickRoad. Remember the Wizard of Oz? Well, Dorothy was advised to follow the YellowBrick-Road which took her home. Home is where your heart is. Home is where your truth is. Home is very familiar…easy, flowing. We sometimes look away from home – outside of that, just to find confusion, disappointment, and competition. However, when you stay on your path, my, my, my…amazing things happen. Now, I’m not saying that you will not be challenged as you travel along your Yellow-BrickRoad, no. I’m saying when you’re on familiar ground, although you may stumble and fall, it’s easier to get back up because that very path you’re on supports you. That path nurtures you as to ensure you become stronger and even more stable to sustain your dream…your destiny. Don’t Let Life Stop You From Living summons from you all that you authentically are. Although I use some of my stories, they are basically my intention to lead through the power of my example. Experience is the best teacher, is it not? And, yes, I gained the wisdom to follow my Yellow-Brick-Road, and therefore chose to share what I found with you. If I were asked what my wishes are for all of Humanity, it would be this: Seek God first in whatever way is most comforting and inspiring for you, while honoring another’s way, while harming no one. Take time to become familiar with how God is expressing itself within you; and, connect with that expression through your talents, gifts, and ultimate dreams. Trust that you will know all you need to know when you need to know it. And lastly, be willing to make the unknown known; this is where you will develop your greatest wisdom. Don’t Let Life Stop You From Living is a call to own your power. It is a call to allow yourself the freedom of full expression by overcoming to becoming who you really are; and, who you really are is a piece of God. Remember that. Display that. Be that, and life itself will support that. Namaste.■

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are. We are multidimensional beings and are therefore, so much more than a body. Chapter Two touches on My First Memories – childhood memories that interrupted my life – this affects all of us, whether good, bad, or indifferent. Chapter Three acknowledges that We Are All Children. Yes, ultimately we are…it’s just some of us are adults who are living in the “missingness” of that parent, which we long for, as it disrupts our relationships. Chapter Four reminds us that We Are All In This Together, although we appear to be separate beings. Chapter Five inspires that We’re All Here To Do, What We’re All Here To Do. Chapter Six is a reflection which encourages that Aging Doesn’t Mean Declining. Chapter Seven opens our eyes to that fact that we all have The Ability To Do What We Need To Do, When We Need To Do It. Don’t Let Life Stop You From Living is my idea, my expression of, a plea – if you will, to my readers that no matter what you go through, what you face, what you deeply feel – don’t let life stop you from living. In other words, life is going to happen. As long as you are part of the human-race, you are going to experience variations of fear, disappointment, anger, deceit, denial, and death. However, all of these have polar opposites: fear has the capacity to open up to love; disappointment allows one to reason and explore what’s possible; in other words, how you view your world determines how your world shows up. Anger is just another way of expressing your passions.


RO BROOKS “How To Go From Extra To Actor”

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ctor Ro Brooks, best known for his role as Michael on Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and the Have Nots” on OWN, has added author to his resume, releasing his book “How To Go From Extra To Actor: The aspiring actor’s guide to stardom.” Brooks has worked on numerous films and television shows starting with uncredited roles in Meteor Man, Homicide, Life on the Streets, and The Corner, to lead roles in independent films: The Holloway Story, Charm City, and Champion Road. He has also co-starred, guest starred

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and had recurring roles in top-rated network shows such as Brooklyn Nine Nine, Sons of Anarchy, Shameless and, of course, The Haves and the Have Nots. So, it is from experience that he speaks about a life in acting from extra to actor. Brooks survived the mean streets of Baltimore to pursue acting. His natural acting ability was cultivated by his grandmother and great aunt, who encouraged him and his three sisters to perform dance and musical routines, by throwing change at their feet. During his younger years, Brooks began develop-

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ing his musical prowess by rapping and dancing at talent shows and local events. His early success started when he got together with a group of friends and formed the rap and dance group “Twice As Nice.” The group performed at local venues, and later won a talent show that earned them a spot on the bill at Harlem’s famed Apollo Theater, for a taping of “Showtime at the Apollo.” A few years later, Brooks landed his first role in a feature film directed by Robert Townsend. He has since gone on to work with other acclaimed directors such as Michael Bay, Quentin Tarantino, Michael M a n n a n d , o f c o u r s e, T y l er P er r y. With a background in music, Brooks welcomed the opportunity to exercise his musical roots while integrating and expanding on his acting talents in music videos, working with such artist as: P. Diddy, 50 Cent, Justin Timberlake, Lil’ Wayne, TI, Jill Scott, Syleena Johnson, Young Jeezy, Ice Cube, Snoop Dog, Lil’ Mo and Master P., to name a few. Having escaped some of the trappings of the inner city, Brooks felt compelled to reach out to his family members, friends, and those in his community who were less fortunate. As a direct result, he founded The Hook Up- Music Magazine, whose mission was created to provide inspirational messages to inmates in correctional institutions across the country.■

Actor Ro Brooks Releases Paperback Edition of His Book "How To Go From Extra To ACTOR". Pre-Order Your Copy Today @

http://www.robrooks.com

“TODAY’S LEADING MAN”

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JEROME RO BROOKS


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TOSHA WHITTEN-GRIGGS

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TV ONE NAMES TOSHA WHITTEN-GRIGGS SVP, PUBLIC RELATIONS The FrontPage Firm

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vision producer Ralph Farquhar, and TV One's NewsOne Now host and managing editor Roland S. Martin among others. Whitten-Griggs served in positions of increasing responsibility at the Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards for eight years where she was most recently publicity director (20092016). She has also offered expertise to other major television and entertainment industry events, serving as executive-incharge of publicity for The Stellar Gospel Music Awards (2010 - 2016), as well as contributing to publicity efforts on The American Music Awards, The ASCAP Pop Awards, The ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Awards and The Trumpet Awards. She has led client visibility programs at major industry conferences including Television Critics Association, NATPE, The National Cable Show, Pan African Film Festival, National Association of Black Journalists, UNITY, American Black Film Festival and the Hollywood Black Film Festival. Formerly BET's senior director of corporate communications, Whitten-Griggs spent eight years directing public relations strategies and execution for the network's original entertainment programming, series and specials, including the Annual BET Awards, Hip Hop Awards, Celebration of Gospel, Walk of Fame, BET Comedy Awards and BET's 25th Anniversary Celebration. She was responsible for launching and/or ongoing publicity efforts for series such as American Gangster, the College Hill franchise, Baldwin Hills, and Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is, among others. She was also responsible for developing the network's West Coast PR team, orchestrating the launch of BET.com and ran communications for the site in its first year. Whitten-Griggs is a member of numerous professional organizations, including the Television Academy, Television Publicity Executives Committee (TPEC), Black Public Relations Society (BPRS) and serves on the board of the non-profit Abundant Life Foundation.â–

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V One President Brad Siegel formally announced Tosha Whitten-Griggs as the network's SVP, Public Relations. WhittenGriggs joined earlier this year and oversees the full scope of TV One's communications and public relations strategies, including corporate communications, media relations, public affairs, and program publicity. Based in Los Angeles, she serves as TV One's primary spokesperson and chief press contact, and reports directly to Siegel. "Tosha joins TV One as an award-winning and accomplished communications executive with more than 20 years of experience in her field," said Siegel. "Her background, which includes major awards shows, television and film publicity, as well as extensive relationships inside the most sought-after national consumer and trade media outlets, makes her best suited to increase the profile and perception of TV One within the media, industry, and public." Along with extensive knowledge in corporate, TV/Film, entertainment, award shows, industry events and technology publicity, Whitten-Griggs' portfolio includes major feature placements in high-profile, national outlets, such as Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA TODAY, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, Essence, Variety, Black Enterprise and Ebony, to name a few. Most recently, Whitten-Griggs served as the President/ CEO of The FrontPage Firm, a boutique publicity firm with notable clients and projects that include OWN, Sony Pictures Television, USA Network/Characters Unite, Netflix, TV Land, Bounce TV, The SAG Foundation, Interscope Records, Vivendi Entertainment, TD Jakes Enterprises, Central City Productions/The Stellar Gospel Music Awards, Entertainment Tonight host Kevin Frazier, singers Lalah Hathaway and Faith Evans, film executive and author DeVon Franklin, television personality and celebrity stylist Kimberly Kimble, veteran tele-


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Marshall Faulk, Pro Football Hall of Famer

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Marshall Faulk: Camela L. Douglass, M.S. ED.

The Fame Continues

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crease their knowledge, expose them to life outside of the projects, and allow them to dream and expect more than what they see on a daily basis,” Faulk explains. “Through our supporters, we have been able to help young people tackle the challenges they face that often prevent them from achieving their dreams.” The Foundation has provided football scholarships to San Diego State University, funded sports programs, provided aftercare at The Jackie Robinson Family YMCA (JRYMCA), partnered with Boys To Men Mentoring Network, and has supported a plethora of organizations and causes throughout its existence. When asked what he dreams about now, Faulk replies, “just living a healthy and successful life and setting my goals as close to my reality and not someone else’s. I want to max out on being the best that I can be.” Marshall Faulk continues to “meet with success unexpected in uncommon hours.”■

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f one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.” — Henry David Thoreau. Marshall Faulk has come a long way from being a concession vendor at the New Orleans Superdome. He confidently moved in the direction of his dreams, ultimately arriving at Football Heaven: The Professional Football Hall of Fame. The same people he sold popcorn to, were the same people he entertained years later, and who now honor him as one of the greatest running backs in the game of football. Born a star on February 26, 1973, Marshall Faulk was destined for greatness. Destiny has her way of meeting people where they are. She un-expectantly arrived at the Faulk’s doorstep at the Desire Housing Project in the 9th ward of New Orleans, Louisiana, and chose Marshall. Surrounded by bad influences, unsavory circumstances, and the basic challenges of everyday living in the 9th ward, destiny picked Faulk up by his cleats and delivered him to San Diego State University. After taking the SDSU Aztecs by storm, Faulk’s dreams were advanced when he became the Indianapolis Colt’s first round draft pick in 1994. He showed up and showed out in Indianapolis, rushing for 1,000 yards in four of his first five seasons. As fate would have it, he was traded to the St. Louis Rams in 1999. It was here that he lived the life which he imagined—winning Super Bowl XXXIV. Marshall Faulk continues to walk in the direction of his dreams. During his last season with the Rams, he joined the NFL Network as a pro football, on-air analyst, which immediately catapulted him into his second career. Although he will always miss playing the sport, his second career keeps him around the sport that’s near and dear to his heart. Beyond the game of football, Faulk is a passionate golfer. Whether playing for charity, or for hobby, he believes, “I’m good at what I’m good at.” He has proven that on the field and on the golf course. Faulk’s dreams and endeavors have positioned him off the field to empower those that society disregards. The Marshall Faulk Foundation has been giving back to inner-city youth since 1994. “Our goal was to in-


Buster Douglas: The Ali Influence Camela L. Douglass, M.S. ED

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native son of Columbus, Ohio, James “Buster” Douglas shocked the world by knocking out Mike Tyson to become the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. The Douglas-Tyson fight, which occurred on February 10, 1990 in Tokyo, Japan, is considered one of the greatest heavyweight fights of all time. Douglas’ upset victory was ranked the No. 2 all-time sports upset in a recent ESPN piece (second only to the U.S. Olympic hockey team of 1980). Yet the world would agree that the greatest heavyweight champion of all time is Muhammad Ali. Despite popular belief, Buster Douglas and Muhammad Ali have more in common than most would think. Both men shook the world, shocked the nation, and upset the world of boxing. The son of world-rated middleweight boxer Bill “Dynamite” Douglas, Buster began boxing as a child, and had a successful

amateur career before turning professional in 1981. His father was very influential in shaping his boxing technique, but it was Muhammad Ali who finessed his style. After seeing Ali on the cover of Ring Magazine, and then seeing him on TV, a 10-year old Douglas, began to emulate himself after the world renowned boxer. “My dad’s style was a meeting in the middle of the ring. After the dust cleared whoever was standing, is who won—and I wasn’t into that,” Buster chuckled. “Muhammad Ali had a completely different boxing style.” Forever influenced by the unparalleled Ali, a young Douglas even adopted the white shorts lined with black stripes. After being indirectly influenced by boxing’s eccentric genius, Buster will never forget the moment he met Muhammad Ali. “I remember meeting Ali in Atlanta, Georgia. I fought on the undercard of Tubbs and Weatherspoon. Ali came to our workout. I didn’t get a chance to have a conversation with him at that time, but I stood by him and took a picture. I got a chance to see him several times after that.” When asked if they make boxers like Muhammad Ali anymore, Douglas proclaimed, “No—no. He was a one of a kind.” Buster Douglas compiled a successful record of 29-4-1 over an 8-year span, before getting a title shot against the then-undefeated, undisputed heavyweight champion Tyson. Douglas was a 42-1 underdog in Las Vegas, and the fight was held in Tokyo due to lack of promotional interest in the United States. What happened that night in Tokyo is now considered one of the great triumphs in the history of boxing. Douglas dominated the action for most of the fight, before being knocked down by Tyson in the 8th round. Douglas recovered to nearly knock Tyson out in the 9th round, then in the 10th round landed the uppercut, which knocked Tyson out and he captured the World Heavyweight title. Douglas has been retired from boxing since the mid1990s, and currently trains amateur and professional boxers in Columbus, Ohio. His life and boxing career is the subject of an upcoming major motion picture to be produced by Universal Studios. Douglas is also active with charity causes, including the fight against diabetes. He is a diabetic, and has co-authored a cookbook for diabetics, Buster’s Backyard Bar -B-Q Knockout Diabetes Diet.

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Carolyn Bradley FOUNDER/CEO | AUTHOR | ADVOCATE FOR SINGLE PARENTS BRIDGING THE GAP BETWEEN PARENTS, CHILDREN AND COMMUNITY Written by Shernita Wiggins-Wynder

" Living Fruitful in a Frustrated World "

Carolyn: S.P.R.A.G. (Single Parents Raising a Gift) is a nonprofit established to help strengthen single parents. Many times single parents fall through the cracks when it comes to support and encouragement. Our organization can help to make these struggles a little easier for our single parent moms/dads and guardians (because some single parents are extended family members). I often say, “I may not be able to leave my children with a financial legacy, but they will have a legacy of humanitarian efforts from a mother that loves them with all her heart, who just wanted to spread that love abroad.” SPRAG is a community of passionate parents who have access to benefits that will help them excel as single parenst in a movement of unity and collaboration of community. We will continually develop programs that will build upon providing support to every area of need.

T2T: Share with our readers who you are and what/who inspired you to give back to the community in this way?

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aising a child or children as a single parent today is not an easy task. It has always been difficult, but earlier generations believed in the African proverb “it takes a village to raise a child.” Today, we have gravitated away from that mantra more than ever with new laws and cold hearts. But there is a woman, Carolyn Bradley of Monroeville, Alabama, who refuses to believe that this cannot be achieved again. She shares her story and her new foundation that is making a difference towards restoring those principles to single mothers and fathers in her town and around the world.

T2T: You recently started a non-profit that is blazing some

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trails because of its uniqueness in the South. Tell us what it is and how did you come to organize it?

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Carolyn: I’m a single mom of two wonderful children, Brandon and Brielle, and I know firsthand about the struggles single parents encounter. I’m humbled to be given the opportunity to make a difference in society. It’s always been my desire to be able to sow into others, things that my parents and grandparents sowed into me. So, I’m most inspired by them. Raised in a dual parent household along with my grandmother, I was blessed to have a “triple-threat” of parental guidance. Growing up in a small community where everyone was willing to help their neighbors was a plus! However, I’ve grown to realize that your neighbors are not just those that live next door. This has given me the motivation to reach out to help those struggling like me…so I’m grateful.

T2T: We know raising a child or children alone can be a struggle. What advice would you give to a father/mother…or any guardian in this life situation?

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Carolyn: The best advice that I can give to any single parent is to NEVER stop loving your children, and never “give up” on them. Push your children to believe in the Lord first and then always believe in his or herself. Teach them to be DREAMERS and set goals with ambitions in life. Single parents FORGIVE yourselves and move on with your lives, because our children didn’t ask to come here and are depending on us for guidance. Always pray in making wise decisions, because our children are affected by our choices in life. Lastly, I would encourage them to seek help if they need it and don’t be ashamed to ask for a “hand up.”

T2T: It is evident that non-profits are popping up everywhere; what is so unique about yours and where do you see it going in 5 years?

Carolyn: I agree that there is an abundance of non-profits out there, but you don’t have a lot that are geared specifically for the single parent household, universally. The thing that I think makes SPRAG unique, is the fact that we are very focused on helping single parents to help themselves, and we do this is by each single parent completing volunteer hours within the organization and have SPRAG surrogates. We want to provide tools that are lacking, in order to assist in effective parenting. SPRAG is a community of support so single parents don’t feel alone in their situation. We want to be in the business of giving a “hand up” and not a “hand out.” SPRAG members are provided local, state, and global information, benefits and savings

for single parents without limited opportunities. As the years progress, I see us including anything from financial planning, parental advice, travel tips, savings and any service that can be useful to single parents.

T2T: How can someone support the S.P.R.A.G. Movement and what are your social media outlets?

Carolyn:

Our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram is SPRAG777. People can help us by sending donations to S.P.R.A.G. P. O. Box 1694, Monroeville, AL 36461, volunteer their time to help our cause, and visit our website for more information: SPRAGmovement.org.

T2T: Do you have any acknowledgements? In 2013, I was blessed to be a part of a wonderful FaceBook blog called Purposeful Living for Life’s Journey and I ended each of my posts with my own personal quote, “Living Fruitful in a Frustrated World.” I would like to acknowledge the Lord and thank him for giving me such a wonderful opportunity to reach out and help others to obtain this way of life. I want to thank my wonderful parents Mrs. Emma Bradley and the late Robert Bradley Sr., every spiritual mentor that He’s blessed me with along this journey, and Pastor Mike at Grace Church, Drewry Road in Monroeville, Alabama.■

Carolyn Bradley with her children Brandon and Brielle

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Photo by: Raven Jones Photography Makeup by: Nakiyah Bradley

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Steam Hydration Hair Treatments

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By Lemicia Smith

ne of the key elements to healthy hair is hydration, and that is where steam hydration treatments factor in. This process is extremely important in aiding in the success of natural hair care. Just like our bodies need proper hydration to sustain our health, so does the scalp. Steam hydration treatments create a pathway to the cuticle layer of the individual hair strands. This opens the cuticles so that they can receive the products being used to treat the hair. With every treatment the hair will become stronger and healthier. This will cause the hair to retain its’ moisture, and prevent dryness, brittleness, and breakage. Steaming also enhances your natural curl pattern, and promotes elasticity in the hair. One of the key elements to great definition, regardless of texture, is moisture. Steam hydration allows you to produce the same curl pattern on natural hair without having to leave the salon with wet dripping hair full of products. There are several natural herbal oils that can be used in conjunction with the steam hydration treatments. Lavender oil and a deep conditioning is a great mask for the hair. These treatments should be done at least once a week, along with drinking plenty of water every day. The key is to hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate for a healthier body and hair.â–

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www.zhazar.com IG: LameciaKing FB: Lamecia King

BEAUTY TRENDS

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Lamecia King ZhaZar Hair Studio 664 11th St Atlanta GA 30318


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individual character traits. Jacqueline has been published in three different magazines and is in demand by several others for future publications. She recently landed two acting roles, one in an upcoming theatrical play, “Double Life of a Ministers wife” and a film series entitled “Mafia the Series”. Her goals and expectations are to inspire the plus sized woman in knowing nothing can stop you in obtaining your dreams and aspirations. Her self confidence is exuberant and an inspiration to all that come in contact with her. Look for Jacqueline’s face to show up in more places as she continues to excel in the fashion and entertainment world.■

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s an aspiring plus sized model, actress and singer. She possesses high fashion print and runway experience, accompanied by an impressive list of commercials and singing performances. Jacqueline’s diverse talents positions her nicely as a promising entertainer. Standing at a statuesque 5’9, her charismatic glamour and ambient smile commands attention as she enters a room. Her beauty is one that is infectious and extends from inside to out. Jacqueline’s decision to pursue modeling has afforded her the opportunity to interact with women from all walks of life. Jacqueline has been an inspiration to other woman as she reminds all, that beauty is not defined by size or age, but rather by a myriad of


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A Beauty, Brains and Benevolence Bundle By Lillian B. Young

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acqueline (Jackie) A. Young is a recent graduate of Clayton State University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communications and Media Studies. While one can clearly see Jackie’s outer beauty, it is undeniably her inner beauty that captures the hearts of many and positively positions her to brand her own business. Jackie has never been one to sit idle or stand on the sidelines. She is the epitome of a “Go-Getter”. Although she is a native of Pittsburgh, PA, she has chosen to remain in the Atlanta area where she plans to launch her own PR firm. Jackie has received such accolades as the Pennsylvania Senators Award, honored as a recipient of the National Society of Leadership and Success, a 1st place multi-category winner in the Miss Kappa Alpha Psi Scholarship Pageant, an inductee into the prestigious Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and a finalist beating out hundreds of contestants which landed her a spot as a “107.9 Hotlanta Girl”. Jackie has balanced this all while consecutively making the Dean’s List and serving as a Mentor to incoming freshman. Jackie has developed a rather lengthy and impressive list of benevolent and community service endeavors. Known for her kind-hearted and compassionate nature, she independently prepares and distributes toiletry and snack bags to the homeless, has led and participated in food and clothing drives and giveaways, sat as a companion with patients in nursing homes and stands firm on the belief of “paying it forward” to those in need. Jackie served as Vice President of Clayton State Internet Radio and now uses her broadcasting and promotions skills and experience as a Brand Ambassador for Radio-One Atlanta. Jackie describes her role as a wonderful and exciting opportunity that has allowed her to work with such notables as Rickey Smiley, Jamie Foxx and Mary Mary. Inspired by the work of both her mother and grandmother, Jackie is certainly empowered to lead and is on the path to taking her talents and gifts to the next level.■


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emetrius Terrell Jr., born and raised in Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love and sisterly affection, developed a love for fashion at an early age. He first discovered his love for fashion as a young boy. He would accompany his grandmother who was a seamstress who sewed biker uniforms, to work. The detail and creativity of taking pieces of fabric and creating clothing intrigued him, and from there he knew that being a Designer would someday become a reality. After graduating from Dobbins High School in 2010, Demetrius attended The Art Institute of Philadelphia, where he was given the opportunity to explore his craft and understand the art behind fashion design. While completing his degree, he was offered a full-time position at the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia. The opportunity to work at the Ritz Carlton introduced him to designers in the industry who have been instrumental in helping him build his brand. In 2012, he was offered, and accepted, a position as Stylist with PFI Magazine. While working for PFI, his leadership qualities and passion were consistently displayed. As a result, he was asked to take the lead on major projects where he excelled and became more confident and vocal in his work. Although Demetrius maintained his position with the Ritz Carlton following receipt of his degree in fashion design, he never strayed away from his love for fashion. He has been a part of Philadelphia Fashion Week, and his collection has been featured for two seasons with an upcoming third season at The Atlantic City Fashion Week. Demetrius continues to build his brand with help from several designers in the industry. Those designers have been a huge influence on his successful progression in the business. His mind is always sparking new ideas, and he tirelessly works on his craft. He continues to work as a stylist and creative designer for local photographers in the tri-state area. His work is one of a kind with every picture telling a story through his clothes. Demetrius is a visionary and has the fire and determination to become a household name. He is currently working on a new collection that includes building his up and coming brand Triiuz. His brilliance in his new collection will have you at a loss for words, as he creates a masterpiece that tells the story of desire, passion, love, and godliness. Triiuz is by far his best collection and his attention to detail is like no other. As he continues to expand his artistry, Triiuz will be the collection that will show the world that Demetrius is truly a Designer force to be reckoned with.â–

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Professional Dissertation

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Demetrius Terrell

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The cultivation of fashion industry professional


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Frederick T. Nah IV

"I came to Los Angeles with no funds and a dream!"

SCREENWRITER|AWARD-WINNING DIRECTOR|PRODUCER|MUSIC ARTIST

DESTINY IS AN UPHILL JOURNEY AND HE’S NOT TURNING BACK! Written by Shernita Wiggins-Wynder

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ne thing I have learned about chasing your dreams is that many times before you achieve them, you will experience falling quite a few times during the process. However, when the “doors of opportunity” open to invite you within their lucrative safe-haven of life…then you must run through them with everything you’ve got! Frederick Nah IV can tell you a thing-or-two about this as he reveals his miraculous journey to Trendsetters to Trendsetters Magazine. We hope his story will compel you to dust off that dream; pick up that lost business plan out of the trash can of life, and STAND UP to face every battle until you’ve reached the desires that have long raged inside of your heart…and set them free! This talented young man is an Award-Winning Film Director/Music Artist who has 70 productions to his credit, directed 20 films, 10 screenplays, and 5 choreographed showcases. He has worked with some remarkable talent, so take a glimpse into his incredible projects and “don’t look back.”

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T2T: Frederick, tell the audience something about you, that you have never told anyone, but it will inspire someone to have hope or achieve their dreams. Frederick: I came to Los Angeles with no funds and a dream. I had nothing planned out. I just knew God told me to go to Los Angeles and four days before I left, I received a phone call to stay in California with friends of mine from MTV and NBC. FREE housing! I'm at the gym three days before I have to leave, and I receive a phone call that a car has been sponsored for my trip. During the week a few people (private individuals) help steer my trip. I'm at the Kroger Parking lot, two days before I leave and I get three calls from “non-relatives” and people I barely talk to…tell me they believe in me and transfer funds into my account to pay for the trip and food expenses. My best friend, Aaron Dominguez takes me to the airport. I call my Industry Mentor in the business who is the Musical Director for Beyonce` and Jennifer Lopez, who tells me to

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meet her at the Dolby Theater where they recently hosted the Oscars. I get to California and on “Day 2”--I'm at American Idol with Moses Munoz on the red carpet. I met Taylor Swift’s Manager, Harry Connick Jr., Idol contestants and others. I receive a backstage pass and meet Keith Urban, Nicole Kidman, Jamie Foxx, their management, the Network, Steven Tyler, his management and contacts, Janell Monae and people that I can't even think of at this time. It was surreal! How did I end up here???!!! T2T: Need you ask? I call that “divine intervention.” So what was the hardest part about getting into the entertainment industry and why? Frederick: Everyone is always trying to use you. It's cut throat. My biggest issue for me growing up in this industry was finances. Here I am with all these resources, this network, this product, my talent, & NO finances. What makes it more of a challenge is…that EVERYONE needs finances! God willing, if someone puts 5 million dollars in my possession, we would be at the Golden Globes. (laughing) T2T: What advice would you give to someone breaking into the film and entertainment industry that if given to you, would have made your transition easier?

T2T: I agree. The moment you share your vision, it’s over. Tell us why it’s so important to support your work and what are you doing to support others or the community? Frederick: What I'm currently doing is this: I have completed the foundation of films that can be categorized as “LifeChanging Cinema” that deal with a series of relevant issues like human trafficking, immigration, love, deception, addiction, homosexuality, religion, and various forms of hard hitting topics in today’s society that entertain, engage, and inspire people from all over the world. Both the films and music I put out reaches a large world-wide demographic and yields the greatest chance to impact lives. T2T: My final question - when are the expected release dates of your projects? How can we keep up with what's new on the horizon with you?■ Frederick: The debut of my feature film The RUN SAGA: BREATHE and my Music EP I Am Now are both slated to release early Fall of this year. For all updates and news go to www.phoenix4films.com . Follow me on all social media: @iamfrednah (Instagram/ Twitter/Facebook)

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Frederick: To work in “silence.” Not everyone needs to know what you are doing. Work efficiently and let your work speak volumes.


THE THE AMERICAN DANCE FESTIVAL AMERICAN DANCE FESTIVAL

(ADF) Three Minutes with JB Jatez

Jodee Nimerichter, Director (ADF)

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modern dance styles mixed with hip hop. Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, they enticed us with a piece that reflected personal boundaries of those who live alternative lifestyles. The best gift to the audience was that the interpretation could be left up to their imagination. It was evident the dancers in this company have trained for many years. What a magnificent treat for all in the Triangle area to see. Wang Ramirez gets an A plus+ from me, and I’m sure from plenty of others who have had the opportunity to see this performance.

The performance by the Wang Ramirez Dance Company was mind blowing. The fantastic work of the choreographers behind this masterpiece made me think of the movie The Matrix, and the only missing piece was actor Keaneu Reeves. The dancers floated through the air amidst bars that represented boundaries between people of different populations and conventions of the world. Their techniques carried an emotional vibe accented by

The American Dance Festival, directed by Jodee Nimerichter, has been bringing forth amazing dancers to Durham, North Carolina since 1934, and every year they continue to amaze their audiences. The Festival kicked off with an opening number by celebrity tap dancer Savion Glover. There were over 50 performances this year spanning the entire

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arrived at the Durham Performing Arts Center to attend the American Dance Festival (ADF) and immediately felt the excitement from the crowd. We were all waiting with a curiosity that took me back to the days when I was a kid, bubbling with anticipation to see my favorite performer grace the stage; that performer was and will always be Janet Jackson. As I witnessed the amazing performance of the ADF, I gained a passionate appreciation for the performing arts community and what it has to offer.

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Most of you probably didn’t know that musical icon Madonna was a student of the ADF before she became the star we have grown to love, and she’s not the only one who sees the value in the art of dancing. The ADF is one of Durham’s best-kept secrets, but growing larger each year. Encompassing an extremely talented crew, knowledgeable staff, and a great family atmosphere, the ADF is a must see show year after year. If you are ever in the Durham area during the month of July, be sure to check out the American Dance Festival and make it a part of your list of things to do!!!■

www.AmericanDanceFestival.org

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month of July and held at several different venues throughout the city. The ADF is one of the most exciting events Durham has to offer. In addition to spectacular performances, it also presents a technique and style dance classes conducted by well-known professional and up and coming instructors. These classes give students a chance to enhance their skills; molding them into sharper dancers and choreographers.


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Trendsetters To Trendsetters Sept Oct 2016 Special Edition  

Muhammad Ali Special Edition

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