We Are The Ones - Black Enterprise

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Black Enterprise Magazine January-March 2019 Issue

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Monday, at the DNC Black Caucus Young Leaders Summit, actress Kerry Washington introduced a panel that included young politicians, entertainers, and pastors who talked about what inspired them to become leaders in their community.

One young man invests in socially responsible industries. Will.i.am, a rapper, was there as an activist who helped prime the American youth to vote with his YouTube video Yes I Can.

Also included was a pastor who started his church in a strip club.

Yep, you read right.

But more surprising than he was Rep. Bakari Sellers, 23, who closed the discussion with a speech. I would write about how dynamic and enthusiastic he was to serve his community, but his words say it better than I do…

Speech by South Carolina Rep. Bakari Sellers, as prepared for delivery on August 25, 2008, at the Democratic National  Convention:

Finally, I have to thank my family, my mother and my father, without whom I’d be nothing at all.
You see, my father was born to a South Carolina and an America very different from the one we know today.
He was born to an America of separation and degradation; an America that said a black man was worth little more than a mule, and a woman was worth even less; an America where the streets bore the scars of segregation and sometimes the trees bore strange fruit.

I can’t imagine how that must have been for him, an eager and intelligent young man told that no matter how hard he worked, no matter how well he learned, or how much he achieved, he could only ever be one thing — a black man. I can’t imagine how difficult that must have been. But no matter how many times he heard that he was wasting his time or that he was just a dreamer, he never believed it.

He never believed that this country is so tied up in what has been that it can’t see what could be.

That’s a special kind of faith because it requires you not just believe in yourself, but believe in the rest of us as well, to believe that we as a people, as a nation, will not let inequality stand, that we will not let injustice prevail, that we will strive to be better than we are, to do better than we have, to have faith in one another and love our neighbors even if they don’t love us.

That’s a special kind of faith.

But men of faith are often challenged with disappointment and despair, and my father was no exception. I’ve heard all the stories about that cool February, 40 years ago, when a young group of students gathered together, much as we have gathered here, for a singular cause and a common good.

I’ve heard how they raised their voices in unison hoping to draw attention to one of the last vestiges of discrimination

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Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, SocialWayne.com chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining BlackEnterprise.com as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and BlackEnterprise.com helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.

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