Tag: Miami

“Insecure” Actor Jay Ellis to Serve as 2018 American Black Film Festival Celebrity Ambassador; Submissions Open Until February

by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (@lakinhutcherson)

The 22nd American Black Film Festival (ABFF) will include an exciting lineup of film screenings, events and innovative programming, and will return to Miami from June 13-17, 2018.  The week will include several new experiences, including Smartphone movie screenings, a master class on film financing, music-focused sessions and new networking opportunities for festival attendees.  ABFF continues to be dedicated to introducing emerging content creators of African descent to the industry at large and is recognized as one of the leading film festivals in the world.

Actor Jay Ellis will serve as the 2018 ABFF Celebrity Ambassador. Annually, the festival showcases dynamic content by and about people of African descent from around the world and consists of five competitive categories: Narrative Features, Documentaries, Short Films, Web Series and Smartphone Originals. Submissions are now open and below is a list of film submission deadlines, Awards and direct submission links:

*Narrative Features:
Regular Submissions Deadline: February 15, 2018
Early Submissions Deadline: December 31, 2017

Audience Award–Best Narrative Feature (Prize TBD)
http://www.abff.com/submissions/narrative-features/

*Documentaries:
Early Submissions Deadline: December 31, 2017
Regular Submissions Deadline: February 15, 2018
Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary (Prize TBD)
http://www.abff.com/submissions/documentaries/
Continue reading ““Insecure” Actor Jay Ellis to Serve as 2018 American Black Film Festival Celebrity Ambassador; Submissions Open Until February”

Scholarship Fund Established for Children of U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson

Sgt. La David Johnson (Photo: Department of Defense)

by David J. Neal via miamiherald.com

The death of U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson of Miami Gardens, FL, one of four soldiers killed Oct. 4 by ambush in Niger, wasn’t just another tragedy involving a constituent to U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson. So, she and her 5,000 Role Models of Excellence program decided to do something for Johnson’s survivors.

Wilson knew Johnson, his parents, his two kids and wife Myeshia Johnson, who is pregnant with their third child. Johnson hadn’t just gone through the 5,000 Role Models of Excellence program Wilson founded in 1993, he’d been a leader among leaders. Johnson’s cousins went into the program also, saying they were followed his example. Wilson couldn’t help but recognize the numeric parallel of Johnson being killed at 25 early in the program’s 25th school year. “He was a true role model,” Wilson said of the young man known as Wheelie King for his bicycle tricks before he enrolled in the Army.

While part of an advisory group in Niger, Johnson didn’t make it out of an attack the Department of Defense blames on The Islamic State. ISIS increasingly teams up with fellow extremist Islamic group Boko Haram, the terrorists in Wilson’s prime international cause, the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls in Nigeria. So, the 5,000 Role Models of Excllence program has established Role Model Army Sgt. La David Johnson Scholarship to ensure Johnson’s three children will have money for college.

A gofundme page has been set up for those who wish to contribute.

Source: Scholarship fund for kids of Sgt. La David Johnson, killed in Niger | Miami Herald

Unreleased Basquiat Art From 1979 to 1981 to be Displayed at X Contemporary via Art Basel in Miami this December

Unreleased Basquiat Art From 1979 To 1981 To Be Displayed Soon
Jean-Michel Basquiat (photo via okayplayer.com)

A collection of unreleased work from Jean-Michel Basquiat will be unveiled this December at X Contemporary, a satellite event of Miami’s Art Basel.  According to a report from Art News, the exhibit will feature a range of Basquiat’s work — including paintings, collages, and drawings — created by the artist between 1979 and 1981, in his good friend Lonny Lichtenberg‘s New York apartment.

Curating the display will be another of Basquiat’s close friends, Al Diaz. The name Diaz might sound familiar, considering he’s the artist Basquiat collaborated with during his graffiti days, creating the infamous SAMO graffiti tag that was painted throughout the streets of downtown Manhattan in the late 1970s.

The show, hosted by Brooklyn’s Bishop Gallery, will run from November 30 to December 4, at Miami’s Nobu Hotel.

This news joins other recent Basquiat exhibit announcements, including one that’s happening in the UK. London’s Barbican Centre is hosting Boom For Real, the UK’s first large scale Jean-Michel Basquiat exhibition, which will feature over 100 of the late New York artist’s works, with his most famous paintings lined up alongside notebooks and drawings.

To read more, go to: http://www.okayplayer.com/news/unreleased-basquiat-art-to-be-displayed-soon.html

Thirty NFL Players Complete an Executive MBA Program at the University of Miami 

The first cohort of graduates have received their degrees from the Executive MBA for Artists and Athletes program at the University of Miami in Florida.  Some 30 current or former players in the National Football League, most of them African Americans, were among the program’s first graduating class.

Source: Thirty NFL Players Complete an Executive MBA Program at the University of Miami : The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education

“Ride Along 2” Tops Box Office on MLK Weekend, Earns Over $39 Million

Ride-Along-2-Featured-Image

Ice Cube and Kevin Hart did it again.  “Ride Along 2”, the second installment in what is sure to become a series of “Ride Along” movies, opened in the number-one spot in its debut weekend, taking in an estimated $39.5 million in domestic grosses, according to Variety.  “Ride Along 2” also has the distinction of displacing the “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” juggernaut from its four-week run at the top, as well as besting critical darling “The Revenant” ($34 million) as it continues to gain momentum from awards season.

Universal spent $40 million re-teaming Ice Cube and Hart for “Ride Along 2,” which finds the bickering police officers working to bring a Miami drug ring to justice.

“It’s a very funny movie,” said Nick Carpou, Universal’s domestic distribution chief. “We have a very committed group of filmmakers and our cast has been promoting the heck out of it.”

The first “Ride Along” movie ultimately earned $134.9 million and even though its sequel debuted a few million shy of its predecessor, the audience skewed slightly more female, with women making up 52% of the opening weekend audience, implying the film will have legs as it clearly appeals to both sexes.

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)

FASHION: Wilhelmina Models Searching for a 2015 Summer Goddess; Chance to Win a Modeling Contract and Trip to Miami Beach

Screen Shot 2015-07-10 at 9.50.54 PMScreen Shot 2015-07-10 at 9.51.00 PM

We found another contest for you and this is a great one. The modeling agency that represents Keri Hilson, DJ Kiss, Sharaya J, Kilo Kish and Karrueche Tran is offering a genuine opportunity for a young woman of any color, hue or shade to become the 2015 Summer Goddess. And we can get behind that!

Wilhelmina Models, one of the most respected names in modeling, is partnering with European Wax Center, the leader in the beauty services industry, in this modeling venture. And Dave Coba, President and CEO of EWC could not be happier, “This model search with Wilhelmina Models is the culmination of our efforts to celebrate and reveal the beauty in all women. Through this partnership with Wilhelmina, we are making the dream of becoming a model a little more attainable.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-10 at 9.51.14 PMLadies, if you are at least 5 feet 8 inches tall and 18 to 30, this may just be the contest for you. This nationwide search to find a young woman who is confident, possesses a beautiful look, and an inner beauty even the camera can capture is certainly a great opportunity. The Grand Prize Winner will receive a contract with Wilhelmina Models and a pass entitling her to one year of complimentary waxing services at European Wax Center’s located nation wide. The five finalists will all receive six months of brow waxing.

You can certainly enter on-line http://www.wilhelminamodelsearch.com/wms.html but if you happen to be in Miami tomorrow or Los Angeles next weekend, enter in person.
Continue reading “FASHION: Wilhelmina Models Searching for a 2015 Summer Goddess; Chance to Win a Modeling Contract and Trip to Miami Beach”

Dwayne Johnson’s “Ballers” Renewed for 2nd Season by HBO

ballers hbo

HBO has ordered a second season for its scripted half-hour series “Ballers,” starring Dwayne Johnson as a retired NFL player attempting to reinvent himself as a financial manager for current players in Miami.

According to HBO, the June 21 premiere of the current 10-episode season drew 8.9 million viewers across HBO-owned platforms, making it the most watched half-hour premiere for the network since 2009. The episode has also been viewed 5.6 million times on Johnson’s Facebook page.

“The charismatic and hugely talented Dwayne Johnson, along with the rest of the ‘Ballers’ cast, has truly struck a chord with the HBO audience,” HBO programming president Michael Lombardo said in statement Friday. “We are thrilled with the overwhelming response the series has received and look forward to another exciting season.”

Rob Cordry, John David Washington, Omar Miller, Donovan W. Carter, Troy Garity and London Brown round out the cast.

“Ballers” airs Sundays at 10 p.m. on HBO.

article via eurweb.com

Sisters Making Waves With Their Swimsuit Designs

swimsuit_design
RUE107; A. LEKAY

Have you ever had trouble finding that perfectly sexy one-piece or tantalizingly comfy bikini to show off your assets in the summer? So did a few designers we met, and they say it was their quest for a curve-contouring swimsuit that drove them to start their own companies.

When it comes to swimwear, these sisters are making waves. From itty-bitty, teeny-weeny string bikinis to formfitting, flattering one-pieces and everything in between, The Root has a list of nine bathing-suit designers who offer something for all shapes and sizes.

1. Tennille McMillan

nakamuli
Nakimuli swimsuit (M. JONES IMAGING)

Tennille McMillan began designing bathing suits in 2012 after fans of her clothing line, Nakimuli, wanted more from the Brooklyn, N.Y.-born and -bred designer. Her suits favor African-inspired prints, and she tells The Root that she has just started designing her own patterns, too, which come in all shapes and sizes. The 34-year-old designer says that Erykah Badu wears her line, as does Danielle Brooks from Orange Is the New Black.

2. Desiree D’Aguiar

tracy_suit
BRANDSXBROTHERS FOR WINIFRED TAYLOR

Designer Desiree D’Aguiar does only one thing: swimwear. The 25-year-old started her Winifred Taylor label last year. Although D’Aguiar works in Toronto, where she grew up, the beach plays a large role in her life, thanks to her Caribbean roots. D’Aguiar tells The Root she gets her inspiration from artists, using their work to drive her collection. Her next collaboration will be with Tosh Jeffrey.

3. Altrichia Cook

laying_out
A. LEKAY

Altrichia Cook is the designer behind the A. Lekay label. She’s been in the swimwear business for two years. The 28-year-old is based in central Florida, where she grew up. Cook tells The Root that her quest for a high-waisted swimsuit that would hide certain imperfections led her to start designing her own. It caught on with her Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority sisters, and the company was born. Nicki Minaj is a fan and wore an exclusive bikini in July’s issue of Cosmopolitan. This year A. Lekay showed its suits during New York Fashion Week.

4. Risque Dukes

multi_suits
RISQUE DUKES SWIM APPAREL

Risque Dukes founded her swimwear company of the same name in 2013. It’s based in Miami, which seems like the perfect location for an über-sexy line. The 25-year-old Army veteran tells The Root that she always wanted to be an entrepreneur and designer, so when she couldn’t find a “selfie-worthy” bikini, she decided to design her own. Her current collection includes bikinis featuring prints of Haitian, Bahamian and Jamaican flags. This year Dukes showed her suits during New York Fashion Week.

5. Monif Clarke

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MONIF C.

Monif Clarke, the designer behind the Monif C. label, is from New Jersey but traces her roots to Barbados, where the 36-year-old gets some of her inspiration for her sexy, bright and tight line of swimwear. She was one of the first to introduce plus-size bikinis five years ago, when she couldn’t find suits she liked that fit her figure. The swimwear line is an offshoot of her clothing line, which started with the “Marilyn” convertible dress and is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

6. Kambili Ofili-Okonkwo

kamokini_yellow_scuba_suits
KAMOKINI/’ANUEL MODEBE

Nigerian designer Kambili Ofili-Okonkwo came up with idea for Kamokini a few years ago while living in England. The 27-year-old tells The Root that she wanted a swimsuit “that would make a woman feel confident when she might be at her most vulnerable.” So she sketched some designs and had them made during a trip to China. She started by selling to friends and family, then last year officially launched her company. Kamokini is a combination of her family name and “bikini.”

7. Marie-Jean Baptiste

rue_107
RUE107

New Yorker Marie-Jean Baptiste is the designer behind the Rue107 line, founded four years ago. The name comes from her own Haitian background. The brand, the “home of confidence and curves,” includes swimwear and caters to all sizes. Baptiste weaves the rich and bold colors of her home country into the feminine swimsuits, which she says are perfect for a day at the beach. Baptiste, who was studying nursing before pursuing her passion, tells The Root that her detour only helped her understand even more how to design for the body.

8. Shakedria Mathis

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MICHAEL DAUGHTRY/8TH & OCEAN SWIM

Shakedria Mathis’ swimwear company, 8th & Ocean Swim, was born in 2013 out of her love of travel and her obsession with finding the perfect bikini. She combined the two into the “travel-kini,” which she says is perfect for the “pretty young traveler or PYT, who loves and lives on vacation in a bikini.” The 29-year-old designer hails from Miami but lives and works in New York City.

9. La’Daska Mechelle Powell

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Ladaska Mechelle swimsuit  (COURTESY OF SHAMAYIM.NET)

La’Daska Mechelle Powell started making swimsuits while in design school in Tampa, Fla., in 2009. One year later she launched her swimwear company, Ladaska Mechelle. The Texas native has designed for the Dallas Stars Ice Girls and Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. She tells The Root that she finds inspiration everywhere and makes most of the suits herself. The 31-year-old now lives and works in New York City.

article by Julie Walker via theroot.com

Miami Mom Angelica Sweeting Creates Beautiful Natural Hair Doll for Her Daughters to Raise Their Self-Esteem

Angelica Doll

Frustrated by an inability to find a doll that highlighted her three daughters’ beautiful African-American features, Angelica Sweeting created one of her own.

Sweeting, 27, of Miami, Florida, created the Angelica Doll after realizing that her daughter Sophia was unhappy with her kinks and curls because of the straight-haired White dolls she played with every day, she said on a Kickstarter page started nearly a month ago to raise money to develop a line of Naturally Perfect Dolls.

“Sophia wanted long straight hair, and she even started expressing a strong dislike for her facial features and skin tone,” Sweeting says. “With the help of my daughters, we created ‘The Angelica Doll’ — the first natural hair 18-inch doll for young girls.”

As she began to develop the doll, Sweeting herself realized that she had been influenced by society’s White beauty standards for as long as she could remember.

“Here I am – 27 years old, and I am honestly just beginning to walk into who I am, my natural beauty,” she said on the fundraising page. “I want this to happen earlier, not only for my daughters but for your daughter, your niece, your sister, and for all young girls around the world. I want this to happen for all the young girls who never felt pretty enough because of their kinks, curls, wider noses or fuller lips.”

The Angelica Doll boasts the face of a beautiful brown girl, including a full nose, fuller lips, beautiful cheek bones, and brown eyes. And the hair can be washed, twisted, bantu knotted, combed, brushed, blown out, and curled just like the hair of brown girls.

“Say goodbye to spray-painted brown Barbie dolls!” Sweeting says. “I’m creating Angelica to let girls know that they are beautiful. Our girls need to see a reflection of their own unique beauty. It’s time for our young girls to have a new standard.”

As of Friday, she’s surpassed her funding goal of $25,000 by over $8,000.

article by Lynette Holloway via newsone.com

*FULL DISCLOSURE FROM GBN: After reading the story above, I immediately went to the Kickstarter page to see the doll.  My own 5 year-old daughter Phoebe lately has been grappling with the exact same issues Angelica Sweeting’s daughter is dealing with.  Phoebe and I watched the site’s video together, and when she saw the Angelica Doll – particularly her curly, versatile hair – she was so excited, she asked to have one right away.  And I bought one right away, so GBN is an official backer of what I feel is an incredibly helpful and worthwhile product.  We can’t wait for it to come and for more Naturally Perfect dolls to be created.

There are still 26 days left to pitch in or buy a doll… there is even an option to get a doll designed to look like you!  Check it out/donate/buy by clicking here.

Lori Lakin Hutcherson, GBN Founder and Editor-In-Chief (and very happy mommy)

Carnival Corporation Names Julia M. Brown to Newly-Formed Position of Chief Procurement Officer

Julia M. Brown
Julia M. Brown

Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest travel and leisure company, today named Julia M. Brown to the newly created role of Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) overseeing strategic sourcing and supplier relationship management.

As part of this new role, Brown will work closely with the company’s nine brands and their support groups  to strategically procure goods and services to further strengthen the company’s supplier relationships and leverage its global scale. 

“We are excited to have Julia join us as part of our global management team and take on this new role that will be critical in helping us further leverage our scale, accelerating our drive to double-digit returns on invested capital,” said Arnold Donald, president & CEO for Carnival Corporation. “I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Julia through our mutual association with the Executive Leadership Council, and she not only has an exceptional track record of leading procurement at companies with massive global operations, but also has a highly strategic and collaborative approach that will help us partner more closely with our suppliers to exceed guest expectations and drive value for the business.” 

RELATED: Arnold Donald, Carnival Corporation’s 1st Black CEO, Navigates Cruise Lines to $1.5 Billion in Profit

Brown most recently served as CPO on the global management team at Mondelēz International, which split from Kraft Foods in 2012.  Prior to the split, Brown served as CPO and SVP of global procurement at Kraft Foods, responsible for the company’s $30 billion strategic sourcing function. Prior to Kraft, she served as CPO and VP of corporate procurement and contract manufacturing at Clorox. Brown began her career at Procter & Gamble and also served in strategic roles at Diageo and Gillette.  

Brown is on the board for the Executive Leadership Foundation and also serves as a trustee for the African American Experience Fund, which is part of The National Park Service. She also serves as a board member for the Primo Center in Chicago.

Brown has been named as one of the top 100 most “Influential Blacks in Corporate America” by Savoy Magazine, the top 100 Women to Watch by Today’s Chicago Woman and listed in Black Enterprise’s Top 75 Most Powerful Women in Business.  

She received a Bachelor of Commerce from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada. 

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)