Friday, April 18, 2014

Teen’s Video About Wearing Suit & Ties To Defy Black Male Stereotypes Goes Viral

This is an inspiring story of a few teens who got tired of constantly seeing the negative stereotypes that the media has a habit of attributing to young, black males so they decided to do something about it!

Check it out below…



Suited and Booted! Roland Martin spoke with high school student Hayden Hinton and counselor Tiffany Gholson about an inspiring video making the rounds on the Internet.

Black male students at Illinois’ Central High School put together “Suit & Tie in the 217″ to offer a counter-narrative for young black men. For Black History Month, they released a video of students dressed to the nines with the messages “we are not gangsters and thugs,” “we are employees and volunteers,” “we are scholars” and “we are athletes.”

“The negative stories told daily in the media and in our culture about our young African-American men tend to ignore their successes and don’t tell the full story about how young Black men are becoming leaders within our community schools,” said Central High counselor Tiffany Gholson, who worked with the students on the effort. “In this video, our students reclaim the narrative of who they are and inspire other students to follow in their footsteps.” – Via NewsOne

Props to these teens for taking the initiative to combat all the negative images of young, black males that we are flooded with daily by replacing it with some more positive images! Keep up the good work fellas!

Source: http://wordondastreet.com/teens-video-wearing-suit-ties-defy-black-male-stereotypes-goes-viral/

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

10 Black Heroes Who Usually Go Unrecognized During Black History Month, But Shouldn’t

Robert Smalls Brady Handy
Robert Smalls (April 5, 1839 – Feb. 23, 1915)

Robert Smalls was an African-American born into slavery in Beaufort, S.C., but during and after the American Civil War, he became a ship’s pilot, sea captain, and politician.

He freed himself, his crew and their families from slavery on May 13, 1862, when he led an uprising aboard a Confederate transport ship, the CSS Planter, in Charleston harbor, and sailed it north to freedom. His feat  successfully helped persuade President Abraham Lincoln to accept African-American soldiers into the Union Army.

As a politician, Smalls authored state legislation that gave South Carolina the first free and compulsory public school system in the United States.

Madam Efunroye Tinubu
Madam Efunroye Tinubu (c.1805-1887)

Madam Tinubu was born in Yorubaland, an area in what is now known as Nigeria. She was a major political and business player, who campaigned against the influence of the British Empire over her people and for the elimination of slavery.

She became the first Iyalode of the Egba clan and is considered an important figure in Nigerian history because of her political significance as a powerful female aristocrat in West Africa. Iyalode  (queen of ladies) is a title commonly bestowed on the most prominent and distinguished woman in a town.

After Tinubu, a former slave trader herself, realized the treatment of Africans enslaved in Europe and the Americas was far more inhumane than the way slavery was practiced in Africa, she became a scathing opponent of all forms of slavery and used her influence to try to eliminate the practice in her region.

Noble Drew Ali

Noble Drew Ali (1886-1929)

Noble Drew Ali, who was born Timothy Drew of North Carolina, was the founder of the Moorish Science Temple of America in Newark, N.J., in 1923. Soon after there were branches in Pittsburgh, Detroit, and other major industrial cities of the Northeast.

Ali saw Black nationalist leader Marcus Garvey as the inspiration for his own efforts. He wanted to present to Black people a message of pride, self-determination, personal transformation and self-sufficiency.  Ali also intended to provide African-Americans with a sense of identity in the West, and promote civic involvement.

His movement inspired other leaders such as Fard Muhammad and Elijah Muhammad, leading to the creation of the Nation of Islam.

Claudette Colvin

Claudette Colvin (born Sept. 5, 1939)

On March 2, 1955, a full nine months before Rosa Parks’ famous arrest, Claudette Colvin was dragged from a Montgomery bus by two police officers, arrested and taken to an adult jail to be booked. She was only 15 years old and was the first person to be arrested for defying bus segregation in Montgomery.

Her arrest and her story has long since been forgotten, but it provided the spark for the Black community in Montgomery that ultimately led to Parks’ actions, the bus boycott, and the Supreme Court ruling to end segregation on buses.

Benjamin Pap Singleton

Benjamin Singleton (1809–1900)

Benjamin “Pap” Singleton  was an American activist and businessman best known for his role in establishing African-American settlements in Kansas.

Held in slavery in Tennessee, Singleton escaped to freedom in 1846 and became a noted abolitionist, community leader and spokesman for African-American civil rights. He returned to Tennessee during the Union occupation in 1862, but soon concluded that Blacks would never achieve economic equality in the white-dominated South.

After the end of Reconstruction, Singleton organized the movement of thousands of Black colonists, known as Exodusters, to found settlements in Kansas. A prominent early voice for Black nationalism, he became involved in promoting and coordinating Black-owned businesses in Kansas, and developed an interest in the Back-to-Africa movement.

Matthew Henson

Matthew Henson (Aug. 8, 1866 – March 9, 1955)

Born to sharecroppers on a farm in Nanjemoy, Md., Matthew Alexander Henson became the first African-American Arctic explorer, and is credited by many as the first man to reach the North Pole, in 1909.

Henson was an associate of the American explorer Robert Peary on seven voyages over a period of nearly 23 years.  Henson served as a navigator and craftsman, traded with Inuit and learned their language. He was known as Peary’s “first man” when it came to tackling the arduous expeditions.

Miriam Makeba

Miriam Makeba (March 4, 1932 –  Nov.  9, 2008)

Miriam Makeba or “Mama Africa,” was a South African singer and civil rights activist, known for denouncing apartheid on the world stage and campaigning abroad for the end of the oppressive policy.

As a result of her activism, her South African passport was revoked in 1960 by the apartheid regime, and they banned her from returning to her country in 1963. However, the world came to Makeba’s aid and Guinea, Belgium and Ghana issued her international passports. She received passports from six other countries in her lifetime, and was granted honorary citizenship in 10 countries.

Despite the success that made her a star, she refused to wear makeup or curl her hair for performances, proudly wearing what came to be known internationally as the “Afro-look.”

Her fourth marriage to civil rights activist, Black Panther, and Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee leader Stokely Carmichael in 1968 caused controversy in the United States, and her record deals and tours were canceled. The couple then moved to Guinea, and as the apartheid system crumbled, she returned to South Africa for the first time in 1990.

Martin Delany

Martin Delany (May 6, 1812 – Jan. 24, 1885)

Martin Robison Delany was an African-American abolitionist, journalist, physician and writer. He was born free in Charles Town, W.Va. (then part of Virginia, a slave state). Delany was an outspoken Black nationalist, arguably the first; and is considered by some to be the grandfather of Black nationalism.

He was also one of the first three Blacks admitted to Harvard Medical School. Trained as an assistant and a physician, he treated patients during the cholera epidemics of 1833 and 1854 in Pittsburgh, when many doctors and residents fled the city.

Active in recruiting Blacks for the United States Colored Troops, he was commissioned as a major, the first African-American field officer in the United States Army during the American Civil War.

Bishop Henry McNeal Turner

Henry McNeal Turner  (Feb. 1, 1834 – May 8, 1915)

Henry McNeal Turner was a minister, politician, and the first Southern bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Born free in South Carolina, he  moved to Georgia after the American Civil War, where he pioneered in organizing new congregations for the independent Black denomination.

Angered by the Democrats’ regaining power and instituting Jim Crow laws in the late 19th-century South, Turner began to support Black nationalism and the emigration of Blacks to Africa.

He was the chief figure in the late 19th century to promote the movement, which expanded after World War I.

soledad-brothers

Soledad Brothers

The Soledad Brothers were three African-American prison inmates: George Jackson, co-founder of the Black Guerilla Family, and Fleeta Drumgo and John Clutchette. The three were falsely accused of beating a white prison guard and throwing him from a third-floor tier to his death at California’s Soledad Prison on Jan. 16, 1970. The murder occurred just a few days after another white guard shot and killed three Black inmates by firing from a tower into the courtyard during a racial fist fight.

The Soledad brothers had recently led a hunger strike to combat the abusive, inhumane practices that led to the death of several Black inmates, when they were indicted for the murder.

Opie G. Miller, the guard who shot the three Black inmates, was exonerated in a secret trial where none of the Black inmates who witnessed the shootings were permitted to testify.

Less than a year later and just three days before the opening of his trial, George Jackson was shot to death by a tower guard inside San Quentin Prison in an alleged escape attempt. Some people called it an assassination and “No Black person,” wrote James Baldwin, “will ever believe that George Jackson died the way they tell us he did.”

The two surviving Soledad Brothers, Clutchette and Drumgoole, were acquitted by a San Francisco jury.

Sources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/
http://www.moorishsciencetempleofamericainc.com/
http://originalpeople.org/madame-funroye-tinubu/#.UwcoK_ldXUV

Source: http://atlantablackstar.com/2014/02/23/10-black-heroes-who-usually-go-unrecognized-during-black-history-month-but-shouldnt/

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Lupita Nyong’o - Quote Image: Dreams


Source: http://act.mtv.com/posts/4-best-quotes-from-lupita-nyongo/

Monday, March 17, 2014

Judy Belk Appointed First African American Woman President and CEO of The California Wellness Foundation

Judy Belk will lead The California Wellness Foundation as its next president and CEO, effective April 7, 2014, announced Barbara C. Staggers, M.D., M.P.H., chair of the Foundation’s Board of Directors. Belk is currently senior vice president of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, a position she has held since 2002.

“Judy has stellar operational and strategic leadership expertise in philanthropy and a strong sense of valuing the voices of grantees,” Staggers said. “This coupled with her track record in myriad philanthropic efforts that support underserved communities makes her a strong match for The California Wellness Foundation.”

A seasoned leader with more than 25 years of senior management experience in the philanthropic, government, nonprofit and corporate sectors, Belk played a pivotal role in building Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA) into one of the nation’s largest independent nonprofit advisory firms, which currently advises on more than $300 million annually in more than 30 countries.

She launched the firm’s West Coast and Midwest operations and helped position RPA as a global “thought leader” in promoting effective strategic philanthropy, impact investing, and diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. Previously, Belk served as vice president of global public affairs at Levi Strauss & Co., reporting directly to the chairman and CEO, with responsibilities for both the company’s and foundation’s leadership in the global fight against AIDS, as well as their economic development, environmental and antiracism initiatives.

“I am proud to join the Foundation and support its mission to promote a healthier California,” Belk said. “Since its founding, TCWF has played a historic role in courageously funding in public health areas that had drawn little or no philanthropic attention.”

Belk said that, in the process, the Foundation has expanded the definition of health and wellness for all Californians, particularly underserved, diverse communities.

“I’m looking forward to working with TCWF’s impressive Board, its talented staff and committed community partners across the state in leveraging the Foundation’s resources and voice in bringing about meaningful health changes,” she said.

Eugene Washington, M.D., vice chair of TCWF’s Board, believes Belk’s vast philanthropic expertise will add valuable insight to the Foundation’s current and future grantmaking programs, especially as they relate to health coverage.

“With the expansion of health coverage under the Affordable Care Act, it is an important time in California and the nation,” Washington said. “I look forward to working with Judy on this vital issue and others that are affecting the health of the people of California.”

The Foundation is recognized nationally for its strategic core operating support that builds and sustains the capacity of health and human-service nonprofit organizations, and for its public policy grantmaking. TCWF has also earned national recognition for funding public education and policy outreach, including groundbreaking, multilingual campaigns in violence prevention, teenage pregnancy prevention and promoting diversity in the health professions.

Belk will bring to the Foundation a strong track record of leadership spanning the nonprofit, government and corporate sectors. At Levi Strauss & Co., she led a global team in pioneering work on AIDS education and prevention, and women’s economic development, and launched Project Change, a national antiracism initiative, which was recognized by President Bill Clinton with the first Ron Brown Award for Corporate Leadership in 1998. She also developed and led the company’s philanthropic efforts in postapartheid South Africa.

Throughout her career, Belk has been a strong advocate in promoting diversity, inclusion and equity both within and outside of the philanthropic sector. She has been a passionate voice in raising awareness of the needs of women and girls, as well as communities of color. She has been actively involved in the D5 Initiative, a national coalition of philanthropic leaders committed to increasing philanthropic resources for women, for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer, and people of color.

“The Foundation is at a key crossroads in its history,” said Cole Wilbur, TCWF’s interim president and CEO. “As we sunset the Responsive Grantmaking Program, the Foundation welcomes Judy, an enterprising leader with deep knowledge in philanthropy, to lead the next era of our grantmaking.”
Belk joins a distinguished roster of executives who have led the Foundation since it was founded more than two decades ago.

Belk is a frequent writer and speaker on organizational ethics, race and social change, and her work has been recognized with several state and national awards. Her pieces have aired on National Public Radio and appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.

She currently serves on the boards of the Surdna Foundation, a national New York-based family foundation, and the Marlborough School, a Los Angeles-based, independent school for girls. Past board service includes Southern California Grantmakers, Northern California Grantmakers, National Center on Family Philanthropy, the Ms. Foundation for Women, the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, the Berkeley Repertory Theatre, and the Independent Sector.

Belk received her undergraduate degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., and her master’s degree in public administration from California State University, East Bay, where she was recognized as the 1999 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year.

Belk has lived and worked in California for her entire professional career. A current resident of Los Angeles, she is a native of Alexandria, Virginia, where she was recently inducted into the Alexandria African American Hall of Fame. She is married to Roger Peeks, M.D., who currently serves as medical director of Valley Community Clinic in North Hollywood. They have two young adult children.

Assisting the Foundation’s Board of Directors in the search for the next president and CEO was Isaacson, Miller, an executive search firm with offices in San Francisco, Boston and Washington, D.C.
The California Wellness Foundation is a private independent foundation created in 1992 with a mission to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention.

One of the largest health grantmaking organizations in California, TCWF was established in 1992 as part of the conversion of Health Net from not-for-profit to for-profit status. It is completely separate from Health Net and operates as a private independent foundation. The Foundation headquarters are located in Woodland Hills with a small branch office in San Francisco. Since its founding, TCWF has awarded 7,338 grants totaling more than $890 million.


Note to reporters & editors: “The” in The California Wellness Foundation name is part of the Foundation’s legal name. Please do not drop or lowercase the “T.”

Source: Email

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Transforming Pain to Power: Unlock Your Unlimited Potential


Pain doesn’t last always
Sometimes only for a night
Try not to resist
It hurts the more we fight

Overcoming life’s difficulties is daunting. At times, it seems the burdens that we bear are too painful to overcome. They keep us from even trying to accomplish the things we want most. It seems the only way to outlast the pain is to ignore it, when, in truth, the only way to discover the unlimited potential inside of us all is to embrace the pain, face the Authentic Self at our core, and use the strength therein to triumph over any obstruction in our way.

Based on his powerful, true journey from a childhood rife with poverty, incarceration, addiction and rage to the successful adult life he achieved, award-winning performer, writer, and motivational speaker Daniel Beaty presents the tools that readers need to overcome any obstacle and tap into their full capabilities. By outlining an alternative mode of thinking, especially for the modern African-American man bombarded by negative stereotypes in the media, Beaty empowers the individual and encourages readers of all backgrounds to learn from their cultural and family heritage while forgiving and letting go of the negative so that only the positive remains.

Beaty’s story, supported by deeply personal advice from notable mentors such as Bill Cosby, Leontyne Price, Sydney Poitier, Ossie Davis, and Ruby Dee, serves as a strong reminder that success is ultimately possible, not in spite of struggles but as a result of lessons learned and power drawn from those lessons.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Janelle Monáe - Speech for the Young, Gifted and Black Award at the 2012 BET Awards



Janelle Monae’s acceptance speech for the Young, Gifted and Black Award at the 2012 BET Awards:

“When I started my music career, I was a maid. I used to clean houses. My mother was a proud janitor. My stepfather, who raised me like his very own, worked at the post office and my father was a trashman. They all wore uniforms and that’s why I stand here today, in my black and white, and I wear my uniform to honor them.

This is a reminder that I have work to do. I have people to uplift. I have people to inspire. And today, I wear my uniform proudly as a Cover Girl. I want to be clear, young girls, I didn’t have to change who I was to become a Cover Girl. I didn’t have to become perfect because I’ve learned throughout my journey that perfection is the enemy of greatness.

Embrace what makes you unique, even if it makes others uncomfortable.” - Janelle Monáe