Gloria Thompson – We are Black History!



Gloria Thompson

Breaking News – Twelve-year old Gloria Thompson along with classmates from elementary school, Michael Jones, Lance Newman and Ronald Deskins, desegregated schools (Stratford Junior High) in Arlington, Virginia on February 21959. Youths have been breaking barriers for a very long time and today’s trauma victims in Parkland, Florida are part of a long tradition of our civil and human rights movements. Just as we recognize our youth today (2018) are savvy and well organized, the integration at the Stratford Junior High School in 1959 was also a successfully orchestrated event.

National and local organizations had been involved in legal challenges. There were IQ testing and selection of the chosen four. Intense parental involvement included teachers from the community prepared the students’ academically and mentally.  Community leaders coordinated between the school system, her community, and everybody’s parents. It was a single landmark event for Arlington County. That was also true for our segregated community of ‘Halls Hill’ locked in off both sides of Lee Highway, and anchored by John M. Langston Elementary School.

Gloria’s sister, Clarissa, had been a named claimant in court battles to facilitate the integration of Arlington County schools. She had finished top of her class, at the segregated Hoffman-Boston High School in South Arlington. Kids were used to being bussed to a school far away from the nearby Stratford Junior High.  That day would change everything, months and years followed by the second and third wave of students who fought in court or became eligible to go to Stratford based on grades. Many students, from the community, chose to stay and go to the segregated Hoffman-Boston. Also the kids from ‘Halls Hill’ went to other nearby desegregated schools thereby splitting up the youth in the community. Gloria was popular at the segregated school and had made new friends. With this change, she would become isolated and far away from her new friends one normally would have in junior high school. She never complained.

A big driver for integrating schools was Gloria’s Mother who believed that a good education was the ticket to success. Our activist Mother (yes Gloria is my sister) wanted her eldest daughter, Clarissa, to have higher education ensuring her success and self sufficiency by going to college. Mother had us demonstrating at local movie houses, going to civil rights organizing meetings in Alexandria, putting her children in lawsuits challenging the status quo, in a relentless effort to get her son and daughters well educated. Gloria’s high test results made her the only girl in this school desegregation in Arlington. The only girl with women swirling around her, from the community, dedicated to her success.

As the youth in Parkland, Florida have been scarred by the loss of their friends and suffering psychological damage, so it was true for Gloria and her classmates. On the outside were changes that opened doors and improved educational access. On the inside she had to depend on our small segregated community for social development. Moving from Stratford Junior High to integrating the overwhelmingly white Washington-Lee High School (W-L) was a continuation of isolation dedicated purely to the importance of learning opportunities but a social flop with psychological challenges day in and day out. Probably due to my mother’s insistence, my brother attended W-L briefly, due to fist fights over insults, he later finished high school with a GED. (He was a warrior).  They thought the workshop teacher was a janitor! The hard work of desegregation put Gloria Thompson and her classmates on the map in the Halls Hill (Now Highview Park) community  and well documented in the Arlington, County Library.

It was a sacrifice and many fail to appreciate that fact. When young people, including at the time, my Mother’s children, who were thrust in front of Judges, School Boards, a sea of new and different cultural subsets of students, demonstrations to gain access to local movie houses in the face of Nazi opposition and relentless self-consciousness to avoid the wrong move cannot be quantified. As we celebrate Gloria, we acknowledge all those in and out of the spotlight during that time, since that time, and even today that have the courage to step forward and make that bold move for change forges a country meaningfulness, and proud of making a difference toward its future and democratic potential. What can we say? We say thank you over and over again.

Art and article by Lillian L. Thompson, for Lillianonline series ‘Black Herstory Month’





Nigerian-Americans a 2018 Princess Olympic Bobsled Story


Nigerian-American Women Bobsled Team

Yes; it is true! 30 years after the Jamaican men and film ‘Cool Runnings’, this Nigerian-American Women’s Go Fund Me team of former track stars had set out on a mission to put Africa on the map for a cold winter sport. The United States long Olympic history in summer and winter games gives them unique attention in our media. They made the rounds including the Ellen DeGeneres show, dancing their way onto the stage and into our hearts. They were ‘fun loving’ but the back story was about incredible hard work and sacrifice made to move from track and field, transitioning into bobsledding, going from zero to 100 to learn and qualify for the 2018 Winter Olympics in a few short years.

The imaginative force behind this effort was also the driver of the bobsled, Seun Adigen. Her vision and a hand-made wooden practice bobsled was the beginning of a journey with a goal to make it to the Olympics. Their story is unique in that they are American born and educated children of Nigerian parents. They represented Nigeria in track and field in the Olympics in 100 meters. Apparently track stars are most adept to the bobsled sport. In the case of the American team, they are sought after talent.  Seun Adigen then recruited two Nigerian-American women former track stars to join the team. They gave up normal activities so many at their age enjoy. Instead they put their focus on going for a mission of qualifying in bobsledding for the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. They achieved that first step. All in great spirits brakemen, Ngozi Onwumere, on left in drawing, and Akuoma Omeoga had great synergy to commit to the work and be actively engaged with the marketing and getting sponsors. They would travel to Nigeria for TV interviews and promotional support.  They raised enough money to travel and obtain their own bobsled. They also formed a federation for bobsledding in Nigeria. While the warm climate continent had only eight countries participate in the 2018 Olympics, most Africans don’t even have the Winter Olympics on their radar screens. This is truly a mission of significant proportions, yet it brought great pride to Nigeria.

As it turns out, they were last (20th) in the Olympics behind the Gold Medalist from Germany, off by 7 seconds, if you can imagine the 19 others including 3rd from finish, Jamaica, that were competing. Yes, after 30 years there was the first women’s bobsled team from Jamaica. Despite drama of one team member leaving with the bobsled and scrambling to get another they actually beat the Nigerian team by two spots. A closer look at this fierce competition of milliseconds made up the differences between the final medalist teams. In the final runs, the Americans were most destined to win the gold. They were well positioned and had the best  success record. After three runs though, Afro-German driver, Mariama Jamanka, of the Germany team had the highest average scoring runs to win the gold medal; the African-American team (Elana Meyers Taylor and Laura Gibbs) got silver, and the Canadian bronze team winners had, Phylicia George a brakeman, an Afro-Canadian member.

Go figure, of the six finalists (two to a team) four were of African descent. As the Nigerian team got our attention in the states. Jamaica (Carrie Russell and Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian) were also making history despite their disappointing relationship with a German coach, who owned and took the bobsled upon unexpectedly quitting during the Olympics. Something they amazingly overcame, even though third from last. T

he Global Afro Woman, has much to be proud of in dominating the 2018 Olympic bobsledding event. We are very proud of her determination and competitive spirits.  Congratulations my protagonists!


Art and article by Lillian L Thompson for Lillianonline

Yamiche Alcindor – Multimedia Journalist


Yamiche Alcindor

The New York Times claimed her as their former national reporter covering politics and social justice issues. Yamiche Alcindor, is now  with “The PBS Newshour” as a White House correspondent, and was mentored by the late Gwen Ifill, (PBS Newshour) an American Peabody Award-winning Journalist, newscaster and author. Yamiche ‘continues as a political contributor to NBC and MSNBC’, currently she covers Congress, ‘the impact of the Trump Administration’s policies on working class Americans and people of color and intersection between race and politics in America’ according to Managing Editor at PBS Newshour, Judy Woodruff,  who was struck by the combination of her ‘eye for detail, crisp writing and passion for the craft with a gift for communicating on air.’

In the trenches, Yamiche Alcindor has ‘reported on the Newton Conn. school shooting, the death of Trayvon Martin, and police related protest in Ferguson, Mo. and Baltimore, Maryland.’

She was acknowledged in 2017 by The Root’s annual list of most influential African Americans in the country. That influence extends to a ‘1804 list’ awards honoring Haiti’s independence and recognizing influential Haitian-Americans. The National Association of Black Journalists gave her a nod as Emerging Journalist of the Year in 2013.

Alcindor holds a master’s degree in broadcast news and documentary filmmaking from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in English, government and African American studies from Georgetown University according to her bio on the PBS website.

Yamiche has become a trusted source for news in the black community. She is a native of Miami, Florida whose parents are native Haitians. Her love for writing started at a very young age. She did internships at The Seattle Times, Miami-Herald, and The Washington Post. After graduation in 2009 she began full time work as reporter at Newsday. Utilizing her fluent creole and French Language, Yamiche covered the Haitian earthquake ‘providing guidance’ to journalist. Yamiche defines herself as a multimedia journalist which drew the attention of USA Today where she worked from 2011 to 2015, during which time she gained her master’s from NYU. (Source from Defining Cultures and her Website.)

Yamiche is continuing to evolve professionally and her unique perspective could serve as a solid and reliable source of information on what is happening to people of African descent affected by slave trade across the Atlantic into South America, Caribbean Islands and lower United States. Many have entered the United States as refugees or immigrants seeking new beginnings. These days the news media is under attack so Yamiche Alcindor along with Joy Reid (AM Joy of MSNBC), another Haitian, have greater meaning as sources of truthful reporting in the USA community’s of color.

She is represented by WME (William Morris Endeavor out of Beverly Hills, California) and attorney Kathleen Conkey.

Art and article by Lillian L Thompson of Lillianonline




Amara La Negra – Afro-Latina Beauty and Brains

Amara La Negra

This USA born citizen and bred Dominican personifies the kind of beauty that shocks the long promoted standard images of Europeans. Who declared ‘Black is Beautiful’? Amara has grey eyes, and eye glass figure, a big round buttock, a thin nose, small lips, gorgeous dark skin and a huge afro. This combination of elements makes her Afro-Latina. She is popular in the Latina countries. They appreciate the range and variety of shapes, sizes and shades as ‘La Negra’ puts it. While Miami is considered the capital of South America, breaking into the rest of the USA is quite another feat. Amara speaks Spanish with an accent as if she were reared in Dominica and speaks perfect English as well. These combinations of physical attributes, talent as a singer/dancer performer, and fluent in Spanish has made her somewhat of a sensation.

Her breakthrough moment came with the VH+1 Hip Hop reality TV Series, this time in Miami. When she describes the show’ approach, it is being put into certain situations and reacting yet being aware of ones surroundings and career goals.  Her first show defined Amara La Negra’s potential legacy. Upon meeting a producer that help developing artist break into the American Market, she was challenged with changing her image. The comparison reflected one image is so much better than another for example he said ‘be less Macy Gray (natural hair) and more Beyonce’. The producer inquired whether her huge afro was a statement of being black as a noted ‘black power symbol’ (arm raised)? Before this ‘reality tv’ meeting Amara was not a spokesperson for colorism although she had experienced differences most of her life starting as a child performer. Her mother worked many jobs to ensure her vivacious and outgoing daughter had platforms to showcase her talents. Amara is committed to her mother’s happiness and thankful for her sacrifice. Her mother is also her advisor. La Negra walked away from that very established producer into several multimillion dollar contracts including a major record company and international manager.

Amara La Negra answer questions about her cause and has vocally challenged the Latina community to face up to their quiet acceptance of colorism within the culture. You can find her online doing interviews on radio talk shows, Hip Hop Miami, and articles about her interaction with the producer, who by the way, off set made fun of Amara’s hair style thus triggering her crusade. Despite the Latina producer being uncomfortable with her look. La Negra has made her hair even bigger with extensions, and declares this look is her most comfortable. Amara declares that her look is the ‘attention getter’ to raise the level of discussion for Latina to address discrimination due to ‘colorism’ within their cultures. Amara La Negra points out that all the South American countries and islands with people of Latina origin have people who look like her. She wants to represent a positive image for young girls. There were very few black Latina role models when she was growing up thereby looked to African Americans such as Whitney Houston and Donna Summers. Amara is flashy, spirited, sexy and talented with shade constantly being thrown at her. An example would be other Latina who do ‘black face’ mocking so-called European features and dark skin. While she builds her breakthrough career in the rest of States, she is the woman to be admired and respected. Amara La Negra will bring up all the stuff that we ‘outside of Miami’ deal with, such as my race vs your race ‘I’m ok, you’re not;  woman vs man sexism and power roles; and what is acceptable beauty in our marketplace. Don’t doubt she will challenges her Latina sisters and brothers to open up on colorism. Yes that includes ‘civil rights’ African Americans and their offsprings.


Art and Article by Lillian L. Thompson, founder of

Zena Howard, Architect and Managing Director


Zena Howard, Architect

Data shows from the American Institute of Architects that .02 percent of their professionals are women of color. This makes Zena Howard an African American woman architect a very rare person indeed. She is well a documented rising star in the profession. During 2017, her title became principal and ‘managing director of the Durham and Charlotte offices’ of the International firm of Perkins + Will. Many articles from Perkins + Will promotes awareness of Zena’s career and successes as an architect. Zena is on LinkedIn, which shows her career jobs as project architect and eventually principal at The Freelon Group. Zena’s building projects include Anacostia Library, Human Resources Building in Durham, and smaller museums. Her tested capacity and experience made her most ideal to step into the managing director role after architect Phil Freelon, who remains the design director at Perkins + Will. Due to neuron effects of ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) he had to relinquish day to day operations. Many people may not be unaware that Freelon, at age 65, is still in the prime of his career as an architect and was acknowledged as ‘Architect of the Year’ by the American Institute of Architects December 2017. This places Zena at ‘up and coming’.

The ‘planned acquisition’ of the 60 member Freelon Group with Perkins + Will came amid work on the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC (which just won ‘Building of the Year’). The Freelon Group were the design Architects on that building in collaboration with lead designer, British-Ghanaian architect, David Adjaye;  J Max Bond (of NYC Davis Brody Bond (deceased (2009) was my former professor at Columbia and Julian Bond’s cousin) also a design partner along with the addition of a large interdisciplinary architectural/engineering firm SmithGroup to round out the winning team. Zena Howard, as design project architect, worked on construction of significant portions of the building for over eight years of her professional life.  Ensuring design details during construction, are what brings the building to its full potential. It’s the fine work that customers experience when visiting: quality of air, light, sight, sound, flow, surfaces and spaces as parts of a great building. Recall that .02 percentage of African American women are in the field of Architecture up from the 0.01 several decades ago.

It is very difficult to express the uniqueness and fragile circumstances of women in architecture as a few manage to rise and shine. Zena Howard established a successful route with progressive experience in the profession and still at a young age for evolving architects. One could follow her career for many years to come. I was referred to her near the end of her working days on the National Museum of African American History and Culture. I actually ran into her at a genealogy event in Durham. Zena was gracious; her personality was vibrant and energetic. I could see and sense that she was at a high point in her career reflecting great confidence and  mastery of her skills and talents.  Once we had a chance to talk after completion of the Museum, Zena spoke about her efforts and desire to help inspire and develop young African American women architects, something that is sorely needed. She was helpful in referring me to possible relationships and opportunities to work with Perkins + Will. I am aware that she was successful in connecting others. She is part of an impressive group of local women architects who recognize that mentoring and assisting with the development of women in architecture is a worthy effort. She according to articles is sought after as a speaker.

There are other impressive African American women architects from different locations around the country and sometimes heirs of their family businesses that deserve appreciation. Zena Howard did not even know what architecture was and discovered it from a TV show.  Born in Texas, lived in Rocky Mount, NC and upstate New York she learned about racism and experienced being made fun of by her school mates. She learned from that which gave her perspective on the importance of architecture in bringing people together. Fortunately for us she landed in Durham, North Carolina. Zena graduated from the University of Virginia. She began her career elsewhere and now has spent a major part of her professional career with The Freelon Group (10 years) and now through a planned acquisition is principal with the international renown firm of Perkins + Will.  Zena represents what so many women aspire to accomplish in the field of architecture and knowing that she is doing it with grace and dignity makes it most impressive. By working on the National Museum of African American History and Culture she has begun establishing a worthy legacy in the local, regional, national and international markets of which we all can be proud.


Art and article is by Lillian L. Thompson, creator of

Sonia Barnes – Strong History in Community


Sonia Barnes is a native of Wilson, North Carolina, whose father was president in the local AFL-CIO labor organization. Her world involved sit-ups, segregated schools, marching, working hard during summer time to crop tobacco, while learning the value of hard work and education. Her young life bloomed in the middle of the civil rights movement. She grew up with friends like former judge and now Congressman G. K. Butterfield and Attorney Toby Fitch. Sonia Barnes is a congressional liaison to Representative David Price for the 4th Congressional District of North Carolina, and also worked formerly with educator, Congressman Bob Etheridge.

Sonia’s wise mother taught her to respect everyone no matter what their economic status in life. She carries that one step further in her non-profit work in NCBWEN by fundraising for scholarships for the ‘Average ‘C’ grade students providing them with book bags and scholarships! She is also the Founder and CEO of the North Carolina Black Women Empowerment Network. ( Their ‘mission statement’

‘The North Carolina Black Women Empowerment Network’s supreme mission is to advance the wholeness and total well-being for black women through deliberate social, economic, physical, mental health and educational initiatives.’

Sonia has another titles as wife and ‘first lady’ under her husband’s ministerial leadership at the First Garner Church of Faith, in Garner, North Carolina. Sonia is majorly a mom and grandmother. She is constantly on her feet which is not lost on her husband, who reminds her of such. As the liaison with Congressman Price, she represents the district with dignity and elegance. Her background, experience, knowledge, awareness, and powerful presence make for a compelling speaker, presenter, and spokesman for District 4.

Sonia is not a bragger, yet she receives recognition and was informed to receive the ‘John Chavis Award’ in March. Her talents have placed her on several significant boards around Raleigh including Wake Med. She has vision, on a large scale, mostly because of her past work experiences with the State of North Carolina and her public role working for congressional representatives. Sonia has expressed the urgency of our people working together during segregation, we were forced to do so, now it is out of necessity that we respect others’ views and doing right by people. When you see Sonia and not know who she is, you may not be quite sure how to approach her, do not hesitate because what you’re seeing is a powerful image of authentic grace and style with a commitment to her people and the work of empowerment. Her warm Wilson hospitality does suit her as a ‘first lady’ in her own right.


Art and article by Lillian L. Thompson of

Eunice Johnson of Ebony Fashion Fair


Fortunate for us Eunice Johnson came along at a time when the  our consciousness as a people was being challenged by the effects of Jim Crow. Our struggle to overcome was aided by her determination to bring ‘mind blowing’ and uplifting fashion shows to African American woman. She let it be known that we could  wear the best designed clothes that international fashion offered. She mixed black fashion designer with noted couture designers from Paris, France. She established networks of women throughout the country, navigated shopping at runway shows overseas in Paris and Milan, Italy, thereby selecting the most exciting styles that would challenge her captive USA audiences.  She proved we could wear bright colors. She was not limited to women; her styles included high style for me as well.  With extraordinary taste and flair Eunice Johnson, a child of Selma, Alabama, educated at three schools for social work, journalism and interior design became noted as our community’s royalty, who brought the very best. Women appreciated her and wore their best to her fashion shows. What is notable is that she had created an economic engine. While we have fashion shows today, there is nothing of this magnitude that acts as jobs creator for models, designers, event planners, announcers, logistics people, with development opportunities from all involved in the production. She was a pioneer, a woman of great taste, an inspiration, and a standard for fashion and beauty.

After seeing the last stop and show of the Ebony Fashion Fair exhibit early January 2018, at the North Carolina Museum of Art, one has to contemplate the full economic impact this show had during its run  for over 50 years. Where did Fashion Fair began? It started as a fundraiser for a hospital in New Orleans in 1958 according to wikipedia. This show toured throughout the USA in 200 cities including Canada and the Caribbean, featuring African American models and fashion designers. It raised over $55 million. Her cosmetic line was created out of providing the appropriate makeup for her models, because there were no lines available for women of color, resulting in her Fashion Fair Cosmetic line and legacy. While Johnson Publishing Company magazines ‘Ebony and Jet’ have sold, the name carries the Fashion Fair US/UK cosmetic divisions and archives of photos.  The people who were fortunate enough to attend an Ebony Fashion Fair Show over the years experienced Eunice Johnson’s vision to uplift, inspire, and promote the beauty of African American Women.

Article and Art by Lillian L. Thompson, shop art at


Tarana Burke founder of #MeToo

Activist and writer Tarana Burke is the creator of #MeToo and founder of a movement ‘to radicalize the notion of mass healing… we as a people do not do enough to address healing and connection’. She states in a CNN video that this movement was founded for black and native women and based on her personal story. To ignore the fact that MeToo, which was founded for women who voices had been censored on sexual harassment, is to miss the purpose of the organization. Ms Burke wants these women to know they are heard.  She is concerned about the present day climate of name-calling, sexism, and racism drowning out the real reason for the MeToo movement and voices of marginalized women. Her work was started over a decade ago and ‘the message has not changed’. She noted that sexual harassment knows no color and that today’s recognition of this fact (Time Magazine cover of the year for 2017) makes it especially important certain groups of women are not overlooked.

Women have experienced sexual harassment almost as a matter of course throughout this nation, at work, at home, everywhere. Think of the times as a child growing up, in school, and at work. No matter what level, Tarana Burke has been reluctant to keep speaking about her painful experiences. Nevertheless, she lifts all of us up because she felt passionate enough to create a platform for her peers and thus for all women to stand on. From Hollywood to Congress to the workplace, to the home we now have her work to keep this cause in the forefront. Thank you protagonist.



Article and art is by Lillian Thompson at



Mignon Clyburn

Mignon, is daughter of Congressman Clyburn from South Carolina, was nominated by President Barack Obama and appointed by the senate to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 2009 to serve out a vacated seat and appointed again in May of 2013 for five year term which ended in June of 2017. She will remain in the position until someone is appointed or until January 2019 according to Wikepedia.

She is an advocate for Net Neutrality and limiting cost of calls for inmates which have been exorbitant. She has since, the new 2017 Trump presidency, been in battles to resist rollbacks of Obama consumer rights protection regulations. Ajit Pai, now Chair has sought to eliminate regulations that required internet provider engagement in providing broadband to rural areas and Lifeline programs for low income citizens since 1980. Mignon Clyburn has been a voice of defense for consumer protection and access. The recent Net Neutrality vote was 3-2 to repeal along party lines. She continues to speak out against this vote and repealing of other consumer protections for a more open internet instead of the Trump selected Ajit Pai’s directive to deregulate in favor of internet providers. Her twitter account is 

Mignon Clyburn is front and center in the Net Neutrality/Open internet battle where so many of us are on the fringes of understanding. The big issue will be the downside of repealing Net Neutrality. What is the impact of this new ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)?

Ms Clyburn’s extended time on the FCC has been fighting for the internet to continue being a level playing field. It was one of those opportunities for many to build wealth by running small successful businesses that compete with the giants.  With Net Neutrality we all rolled together. The repeal of Net Neutrality is like a main highway being dominated (according to the new ruling) by internet providers like at&t, Spectrum, Verizon, etc. and you can’t get on a ramp (they are closed) so you will have to use the side roads to get to your destination, which will take you longer and may even cost you more for less. This gives more control and license to the providers to affect your access to the faster internet and in some cases where you are able to travel as well. Of course the other giants affected like Apple, Google, Microsoft, etc. need the providers to deliver content; add in dot com companies like Go Daddy and now you have fierce competition for access, cost of services, and slowed traffic. For example, if you live in a high traffic area like DC/VA/MD then you are familiar with separate fast traffic lanes for rush hour traffic. Once upon a time a single driver could get on before or after the designated times for heavy traffic for free. Now everyone has to pay something and don’t even know how to qualify during certain hours to use the fast lanes.  A sticker is also needed so I stay in and negotiate the heavy traffic in the free lanes.

Okay. Imagine, Google gets on (exist on) the internet provider’s highway, they can afford to pay. How do we pay to use Google? If you want faster internet speeds and you are a little guy you may end up having to search less or spend more money, do early morning or late night internet, use your company’s internet, or plan longer times on the slower lower cost effective internet options. Thus far I have been told that things won’t change, this coming from an at&t employee. Ever since the ruling, my phone has been acting up. My one gig of data is used up in no time and my phone is slowed down with all those apps (Is that  the Apple battery?).

Oh yes, I presume that there will be more successful applications than others. All these data hogging game apps require high-speed internet if they can afford it (rich kids) or even get access (not so rich kids). Of course, this is a blog and my take on what will happen to change your experience of the Wi-Fi, broadband, on the internet, (some businesses have already migrated to ‘internet two’ that is more secure and paid for by the corporate users to protect information like IBM.) Who’s staying and who’s going? Will you be able to download that assignment fast enough to work on it and upload it before the deadline? If it takes one to three minutes to get on Facebook are you going to use it? What about access to the cloud?

What about ‘Snapchat’ quick contact video? How many people will drop off YouTube? How will we know what is going on in the world? Who will know what’s up?

Mignon Clyburn’s tenure may be ending at the latest in January 2019, but the battle she had forged will hopefully help you and I better understand when someone says GO VOTE and you don’t bother, the domino affect will be more than you or your relatives and friends bargained for. (The banana republic!) In a global economy you cannot afford to check out if you want to make a living. You need the internet! Mignon Clyburn understands this and is still actively advocating and defending against the repeal. Look her up! She is knowledgeable and our protagonist on the impactful Federal Communications Commission (FCC). We at salute her passion and advocacy.

Amanda Davis TV Pioneer Career Woman

Amanda Davis, TV journalist will be known for her 35 plus years career as a professional in the Atlanta GA news media market. If she had spent that many years and only 62, her work began around age 27 starting in Charlotte, then 

Amanda Davis, Journalist

moving to Washington, DC working for a Satellite TV competitor of CNN then to Atlanta where her career flourished at Fox affiliate. She will be remembered as a trailblazer and inspiration to countless journalists. Ms Davis was engaged for eight years. That relationship ended leaving her to struggled with substance abuse. Eventually a DUI charge would contribute to early retirement in 2012. Knowing the youth driven market competition, Amanda made a comeback based on her belief in purpose as a journalist. She was a mother of Melora Rivera, actress and writer.  

When a woman dies suddenly of a stroke at age 62, it begs to inquire, why? Amanda was a dedicated career journalist her whole life. Not finished in 2012, she made a come back in 2014 though she stumbled again, entered rehab, and developed a special at CBS about ‘alcoholism’ that included her story. Her career spanned from 1979 to 2017. What is the cause of a stroke and does alcoholism contribute?  According to ‘Too much alcohol in middle age can increase your stroke risk as much as high blood pressure or diabetes,…’ Amanda had rebounded her career solidly as working with a local CBS affiliate. She faced a holiday season, after the recent death of her biological father in early December, her mother had recently recovered from pneumonia in November and now news on the loss of her stepfather ‘Pop’. Amanda was traveling to the funeral when she collapsed in the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and was taken to the hospital and died a day later on December 27, 2017. The events during 2017 and particularly during the holiday season can take a toll in unknown ways. Amanda Davis will be remembered for her successful career as a journalist, her dark DUI record due to alcoholism, and her professional comeback only to suffer a sudden tragic death from a stroke.

She teaches us to keep overcoming our frailties, continue striving, and to watch your health. She found purpose and achievements in her career where fewer women especially those of color were in the TV News media field. Her legacy will benefit those who came behind her, as a pioneer in programming working decades as a successful newscaster in the Atlanta television market. We salute Amanda Davis as our ‘Global Afro Woman Protagonist’ and pray for her family during this deeply heartfelt time in their lives.

The article and art are from 


Art by Lillian L. Thompson