If you know anything about me – you know I love speakers and authors – especially those who are called to make a difference in our community. We as Black people have gone through a lot in this country – from slavery to reconstruction to Jim Crow to Civil Rights to now. We are our ancestors’ wildest dreams. But we still have a long way to go to – especially since the current political climate has ignited the popularity of “white nationalism” and mistreatment of minorities.
When I was in college, I formed the first chapter for the National Association of Media Women (a group of all Black women studying communications) and was an officer of ABC (Association of Black Communicators). I love collaborating with those who are going places and doing things. Both groups held meetings where we invited Black professionals from the communications industry to give us advice and tips on how to break into the field – and what to look out for if you’re the only Black in your office, newsroom, station or agency.
Those organizations helped me, helped my friends and we had real industry connections and mentors. But after I graduation and we began working in the field, I saw the need to STILL bring together and advocate for change in the industry – especially in advertising, radio and television. That was over 25 years ago!
So, what did we do? Me and my friends formed BART (Blacks in Advertising, Radio and TV) as a support group, mentoring, professional development and scholarships to Black students wanting to purse a career in advertising, radio or TV. We honored those too every year with the “Salute to Excellence” Award. See picture below.
That organization ran for about ten years and helped a lot of people get scholarships, jobs and promotions until the core of us got married, started having babies and raising a family (my daughter is now working in digital marketing in an agency and we do a podcast together). But there is something in my DNA to bring together Black people to obliterate racism and leverage our resources so we can OWN stuff and not depend on other people to give us “permission.”
Yeah, I’m a maverick (must be ‘60s upbringing) and a communicator who won’t stay quiet if I see stuff that needs to be changed. That’s how I use the power of the pen and mic.
Today, I’m the CEO of Ministry Marketing Solutions, Inc. that is bit of an activist entrepreneur. I am passionate about promoting authors and speakers so they achieve their dreams of making a difference in our community and the world. I teaching them how to build their platforms, publish their books, position themselves in the marketplace, pitch the media, partner with others to get sponsors, shine online – basically help them brand like a superstar.
Controlling your own narrative is important. Owning your own media important. [see podcast below].That’s the journey I’ve been on for more three decades. Social media has accelerated it. Speakers magazine is part of that. My podcasts are part of that. Publishing books and being part of anthologies are part of that. Creating content, online courses and sharing our voices on social media is what is leveling the playing field for us all.
In order to level up, we must really support each other. It’s more important now to be twice as smart by leveraging our COLLECTIVE resources so we can finish the work that would make our ancestors proud and leave a legacy for future generations.
That’s why I created the National Association of Black Podcasters (NABP) which will officially launch in June. It’s an organization that will teach, train and promote Black Podcasters. I am also about partnering with like-minded people. That’s why Speakers Magazine is a Platform Partner of Black Speakers Network with Brian J. Olds – and their official magazine. We are also the Platinum Partner with SpeakerCon with Cheryl Wood.
With Brian Olds, of BSN, we are hosting a Book Tour of Speakup The Book, at WGPR – Williams V. Banks Broadcast Museum in Detroit. If you didn’t know, I’m from Detroit and WGPR is the first African American owned AND operated TV station in the country. So, it was only fitting that we hold our meeting here! It might even be like a reunion. We’ve invited old BART members and NABJ to join us. Meet us there?
You see, I have always felt the need to give homage to our elders and acknowledge their sacrifice. We’ve all stood their shoulders – and to move forward, we must all continue to work together. Time out for “hateration.” Collaboration is the new black. We can move further, faster when we partner, network and support each other. As my mentor Dr. George Fraser says, “Team work makes the dream work, so let us build.”
Join us on the journey to success – as we shine our LIGHT. We are light, lighting the way for others.
Own it and then SHARE it. Master the Media