Tag Archives: Who’s Who In Black Detroit

Detroit: Urban Feel, Small Town Appeal, Big Possibilities

This weekend I was given the privilege of attending The Fuller Woman Expo at the St. Regis Hotel. I’ve always wanted to attend this expo in the past, but was unable to due to conflicts in my schedule. This year, I was allowed to cover the event for this blog and for my Entertainment and Lifestyle Report on The Blaqe Rocket Blast. On Saturday, in a sizable banquet room at the St. Regis Hotel, vendors, entrepreneurs and attendees gathered to hear workshops, panel discussions, ask questions, network with each other, buy from each other, listen to the phenomenal comedienne and actress, Kim Coles and see a fashion show.

Vendors who were present include Von Stiff Clothing, Endless Chic, SoZo-eme (who makes a delicious smelling shea butter based body scrub), Steffie Kakes (her six flavor sock it to me cake is sinful), Tricia’s Simple Treasures, Queen Grace Collection, Pheline, Gi”Amour Women’s Accessories and I’m Pretty 2 Cutting Edge Jewelry.  Model Allison McGevna provided attendees with tips on how to safely and professionally navigate the modeling industry. She discussed the kinds of modeling jobs available, including fit modeling, print and editorial modeling, and e-commerce modeling. She informed the ladies in the audience to make sure that they are aspire to model for the right reasons and not to attain self validation because the industry will “chew you up, spit you out and run you over“. Allison emphasized that it’s important to refrain from sending pictures of yourself in sexy (or sexually explicit) poses to agencies if you want to become a clothing model. Sexy pictures won’t get you the modeling jobs with Macy’s, Target or other clients in that market. Allison’s body of work is extensive, including modeling for Apple Bottom and Baby Phat. She even discussed wearing clothes that make you look good regardless of your size or shape.

The “body positive” event included a discussion panel moderated by The Fuller Woman Expo’s Executive Producer, Cassy Jones-McBryde, featuring Lorna Litz Baez (Curvy Girls Nuvo TV/plus size model), Stephanie Penn, (Daily Venus Diva Magazine), Georgia Greenwood, Creator/Canadian Director of The Fuller Woman Expo and Marina Zelner, President and CEO of Queen Grace Collection.

I also had the pleasure of being a special invited guest for the Detroit CEO Magazine Launch Event, Saturday evening at the Roberts Riverwalk Hotel. Let me preface this by saying, I didn’t know what being a special invited guest would entail. Remember, I’m new to being a “celebrity“, so I still hear people say things about me and I look around the room and wonder who they are talking about. I’m extremely excited about the possibilities that Lacretia L. Rogers is bringing to our city with her magazine.

Now you may be thinking, “Super Woman, we already have a bunch of magazines in the city of Detroit, so what makes her’s different/special/better/worthwhile?” Let me say this: there are a lot of magazines here, Ambassador Magazine, Crain’s Detroit Business, Uptown Detroit and others. However, one thing that erks me about these other magazines is that they primarily feature individuals based solely on their name recognition or net worth. Yes, I said it. If you’re not rich, already on the cover of everyone else’s magazines, in politics or sports, you may never make it into those magazines. They often overlook people doing something tremendous simply because they have yet to hear of them.

Not to offend anyone, but several of our local magazines are simply popularity contests in print format. They miss the mark when it comes to introducing their readers to something or someone new, right in their own city. But there are thousands of people who deserve to be mentioned. You can almost take the city of Detroit map, throw a dart and hit an area occupied by someone doing something spectacular anywhere on it. I believe that Detroit CEO Magazine will be the mechanism for more business owners and operators to become familiar with each other and for the public to become familiar with them as well.

Detroit is a city where many people know each other but at the same time, don’t know as many people as they should. We are tremendously blessed to have a lot of talented individuals, entrepreneurs, businessmen and businesswomen in Detroit. We need events like The Fuller Woman Expo to continue to be successful so that we can all become more exposed to them. We need Detroit CEO Magazine to highlight the individuals that we may not have heard about so that we can bring our economy back into the black by supporting their businesses. I truly believe that if you don’t take a step outside your door to meet others, you will miss someone truly worth meeting.

I’m thankful for all the publications that have included little ol’ me inside their pages (Rolling Out Magazine, Front Page Detroit, Who’s Who In Black Detroit), even though I haven’t been nominated for an Emmy yet. When I reach that point in my life, they get first dibs on writing about me again. In the meantime, I will continue to strive to give them something positive to write about.

I encourage you as readers, members of society, women of color and every other demographic that you fit, to become more familiar with Detroit, its people, its businesses and what it has to offer. If you don’t reside in Detroit, please come visit us. Don’t believe everything you see on the news or read in the papers. Come and find out for yourself what we have to offer and make an informed decision based on your experience, not based on the fears that the media perpetuates.

Detroit is the birthplace of soul music, fashion and automobiles. That is our history and our legacy. There are many people here doing the right thing to continue moving that legacy forward in a positive way. Lend them your support and our city will make the resurgence that it is capable of.

This Is SO Cool

I zip through my life so fast, making plans, working hard to execute them, saving kittens, helping lost little old ladies, defending the defenseless and other super heroine activities, that I rarely get to take time off. I must plan vacations almost six months to a year in advance (when I get to take one) let alone actually enjoy any of my accomplishments. The dust has been flying fast around me for the last several months leading up to September 12, 2012. Now that the dust has settled for two seconds, I can exhale and appreciate the moment.

Yesterday, September 12, 2012, I was recognized as a Media Professional in the Real Time Media’s sixth edition of Who’s Who In Black Detroit. The book is the size of the White Pages and I’m on page 237 of the thick, beautiful book. Last night, as I listened to Cathy Nedd, Associate Publisher say that Who’s Who isn’t about the most popular or those who have name recognition, a small sense of pride began to pour over me. Then she spoke about how they want to put copies of Who’s Who In Black Detroit into the schools, so that young Black men and women can see people who look like them and came from where they are, who aren’t necessarily celebrities, yet do good things as leaders in business and in the community. Cathy Nedd was talking about all the people listed as honorees…including me.

I don’t get very excited about the things I do. It was a year ago this month that a full-page article was written about me in the Front Page Detroit, another Real Time Media publication. From where I sit, what I do is a lot of thankless work that most people will never know anything about. I don’t do it to impress people; I do it because it’s my dream – to get paid for using my talents so that I can leave corporate America, provide jobs for others and leave a legacy that Super Son and his children can be proud of. I don’t really get to think about how other people perceive what I do. There have been so many times when people minimized my work and talents, that I’ve started to exclude people’s opinions from my thought process. I’m aware that I will not be able to please the masses, no matter what I do, and I’m very well aware that many people perceive me a lot differently than I really am. Yesterday, I was also told that I’ve very humble about my accomplishments. I can honestly say that I don’t really know how to “brag“, although some may consider what I do in this blog “bragging“. I believe in doing the work.

When I got home last night, I unwrapped my copy of Who’s Who In Black Detroit, not knowing where I was in the book. I went to the Entrepreneurs section and didn’t see myself. I didn’t even think to look at the alphabetical listing by name in the back. I picked up the book and ruffled the pages with my thumb. As if I were a magician, the book stopped right on page 237 and there I was. I stopped, looked and said aloud, in my kitchen, occupied by no one else, “That’s me… This is SO cooool.” Then I called my mom. And she told me that she is proud of me. Then I went to bed.

I showed the book to some friends and acquaintances who congratulated me and spoke of how impressed they were with the quality of the book and how I had done a good job by being recognized in it. Two of my best friends called me to ask how the event went the night before. I was still not gloating about it at this point. Super Woman was thinking “now I need to step my game up so I can be worthy of recognition next year for the seventh edition“. But the little girl inside of me, who was always told she was too tall, too skinny, was a nerd and was only pretty without her glasses on, was smiling really big and saying “They are talking about me…This is SO cooool.

Today, I started to reflect on the people in my life who aren’t here anymore, but would really be proud of me, like my grandfathers, my aunts and my uncles. I started to think about the people in the media and entertainment industries who are no longer among the living like Don Cornelius and Chris Lighty, and left blueprints for me to follow and created space for me to thrive. I hope they are proud of me as well. In spite of the achievement, accomplishment, accolade, honor or whatever you choose to refer to it as, I still have much more work to do. I don’t do it for the acknowledgement, although it is very cool. I’m glad that someone thinks I’m worthy of acknowledging. For me, that’s what makes this SO cooool.

 

~ The flower doesn’t dream of the bee; the flower blooms and the bee comes. 

Written on September 13, 2012