A Little Bit of Cuba, A Whole Lot of Love

September 15 to October 15 is National Hispanic Heritage Month, which honors and recognizes Hispanic contributions and history in the US. Like Black History Month — which began as Negro History Week commencing in 1926 and expanding to a full month 50 years later — National Hispanic Heritage Month originally launched as a week-long recognition in September 1968 and in 1988 Congress recognized it as a full month’s celebration.

Five Latin American countries celebrate their independence on September 15 — Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala. Additionally, this tribute month encompasses the independence days of Mexico, Chile and Belize on September 16, 18 and 21, respectively, as well as Columbus Day in October.

One Latin American country that’s been in the spotlight recently is Cuba.

World […]

By |September 29th, 2015|Blog

Prepared and Ready

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) wants everyone to take action during National Preparedness Month (NPM), which occurs every year in September. Each week highlights a hazard-focused theme: flood, wildfire, hurricane and power outage. The month concludes on September 30, with National PrepareAthon! Day. FEMA’s “Ready” campaign supports this effort by educating and empowering Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies — both natural and man-made disasters — throughout the year. Simply put: be informed, make a plan, build a kit and get involved. As a Hurricane Katrina survivor, I will incorporate tips on how to keep you and your family safe.

Be Informed

Hazardous events can happen with little to no warning. The Ready website lists warning signs for various disasters. It also stresses the importance […]

By |September 17th, 2015|Blog

Immerse Yourself in Independent Black Film

Growing up in the suburbs of South Chicago in the 80s and 90s, I was always obsessed with films, especially those about black folks. From Julie Dash’s Daughter of the Dust to Robert Townsend’s I’m Gonna Git You Sucka to everything Spike Lee — you name it, I’d seen it.

But that art world always felt so far away from the streets of Chicago (despite Love Jones being made in the Chi), so I set out on a journey that took me to New York City. After ten glorious years working as a journalist, there was a little voice in my head that continued to get louder and louder — I wanted to make films. Ironically, a new journey to work on my MFA in film directing brought […]

By |August 26th, 2015|Blog

Tee Time

In honor of National Golf Month, we take a look at how African Americans redefined the sport.

From Dr. George F. Grant, a prominent dentist, who invented and patented the first golf tee in 1899, and James Black, who made history as one of the first African American golfers to join the PGA tour, to Tiger Woods’s historic Master’s win in 1997, black people have not only played a significant role in the evolution and growth of golf, they’ve also shattered color barriers, fighting for equality and inclusion along the way.

Still, the sport struggles to attract minority players.

According to the National Golf Association, there are over 25 million golfers in the U.S., but only 1.3 million of them are African American. “To a certain level, it’s still a good ol’ […]

By |August 10th, 2015|Blog


I vividly remember stumbling upon my first ever PRIDE parade. Years ago, my younger sister and I were rummaging around the streets of midtown Manhattan, and literally ran into a blockade on 5th Avenue. Navigating our way through the crowd, we got to the gate and were greeted by a mile long celebration of everything lesbian, gay, bi and transgender. Multi-colored flags flew everywhere, as I looked to my Southern, small town-raised sister and uttered, “Ah today is Gay Pride.”

It’s the first moments — the introductions — that stick with you for life. I doubt anyone will ever forget their first sighting of PRIDE festivities. The question is, do they understand the significance?

PRIDE, particularly for black travelers, is powerful because, more than anything, it’s a safe space among like-minded […]

By |July 23rd, 2015|Blog