February ~ 2013

Happy Black History Month!!!

This Month, Pledge to: Support Black-Owned Businesses! Learn Something About Black History!  Teach Something About Black History! Honor Your Ancestors! Speak Out Against Injustice Wherever You Find It! Practice Tolerance! Live Respectfully!  Take Action Against Unfair Working Conditions! Call People By the Names They Have Chosen! Take Action Again Human Trafficing! Love and Forgive! Be a Part of the Solution! 

  Keymáh Mentors With Speed   
On Saturday, February 2, 2013, T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh joins thirty some other media professionals for the annual Alliance for Women in Media (AWM) SoCal Speed Mentoring.   AWM producers, writers, directors, performers, and executives meet in Studio City, CA with those interested in the field.  "I spoke to a lot of bright and promising individuals and plan to keep track of a few of them," Keymáh, who was excited about her first time participating in the annual event. 
The speed mentoring event was modeled after the speed-dating concept, where every mentee gets five minutes in front of each mentor. At the end of the morning, mentees will have experienced valuable one-on-one conversations with several industry professionals!  The event was the brainchild of performer / radio personality and AWM SoCal Past President LaFern Cusack (left), and has been conducted every year since her impressive tenure. For more information on AWM, visit http://www.allwomeninmedia.org/, or for the Southern Califormia chapter, http://www.awmsocal.org/.

Chicago Jazz Philharmonic Presents
DuSable to Obama
Chicago's Black Metropolis
Saturday, February 16, 2013
Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts 
University of Chicago, 915 E. 60th Street, Chicago, IL
2pm - Family Matinee - 1 hour presentation ($10 adults / $5 students)
7:30pm - Full Performance ($35 adults / $10 students)
Music from the Emmy Award winning wttw11 Television Documentary-Featuring Orbert Davis, Maggie Brown and Ari Brown. http://chicagojazzphilharmonic.org/
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 Positive Gents Spread Awareness Quarterly
February 7, 2013 marks the 13th commemoration of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NBHAAD). NBHAAD is a national HIV testing and treatment community mobilization initiative designed to encourage Blacks across the United States and Territorial Areas to get educated, get tested, get involved, and get treated for HIV/AIDS, as it continues to devastate Black communities. Gentlemen’s Quarterly: Positive Men Doing Positive Things, a Cleveland, OH based support group for HIV positive men, hosts its quarterly dinner on February 26, at 5:30PM, at the Marriott on West 150th, in Cleveland. 18-30-year-olds will be presenting at the ‘You’re Never Too Old to Learn, You're Never Too Young to Teach' themed dinner.  
Founder Bryan C. Jones says that the idea of getting HIV positive men together to network and to keep them from isolating themselves was inspired by Ladies Night Out, a support group for HIV positive women. The event, which has brought job opportunities to some of its members, has grown from 35 participants in April of 2012 to 103 and counting.   Jones, who is a performer as well as an HIV/AIDS activist, speaks around the country and is currently co-creating a two-person stage show with fellow Florida A & M University alum, T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh.    For information on Gentlemen's Quarterly events or the upcoming dinner, email b.curtisjones@live.com

WHERE THE ACTION IS: Formerly "T'Keyah Fights City Hall"  which was formerly the "Do Something" and sometimes the "T'Keyah's Two Cents" columns of this newsletter,  this is what the action should be...  For those who don't know... On November 19, 2011 68 year old Kenneth Chamberlain Sr. was shot and killed by members of the White Plains Police Dept. He accidentally triggered his life aid pendant which he wore around his neck because he suffered from COPD and a mild heart condition. He had committed no crime. The entire incident is captured on audio. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5MSP48NH4U Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUwNHZr_nUM Part 2. The City of White Plains and its elected officials, through the lack of a criminal indictment in this case, have sanctioned the officers to mocking, taunting, and using expletives before killing the defenselss veteran.  Chamberlain's son created a petition to New York officials and The Attorney General of the United States, demanding that Eric Holder  indict the officers responsible for this crime.  To join T'Keyah Crystal Keymah in signing this petition, Click here:  This is where the action is...  

The Live Theater committee of the Century City Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc. will take a group of adorable youngsters to see the sensational show, STEP AFRiFA! on Saturday morning, February 23, 2013 at the  STEP AFRiFA! is the first professional company in the world dedicated to the tradition of stepping. Founded in December 1994, the company is celebrated worldwide for its efforts to promote an appreciation for stepping and the dance tradition’s use as an educational tool for young people. The group is comprised of an eclectic group of artists that include members of Delta Sigma Theta (Mfon Akpan and Assata Barton) and Alpha Kappa Alpha sororities, as well as Omega Psy Phi and Alpha Phi Alpha Fratenities.  For more information on STEP AFRiFA! visit http://www.stepafrika.org/home.htm. For more information on the Century City Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc., visit http://www.centurycitydst.org/.
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Keymáh M.C.'s FAMU Scholarship Luncheon 
 On Saturday, February 23, 2013, the FAMU Alumni Association Southern California Chapter presents its 2013 Black History Celebration Scholarship Luncheon, "Pressing on To Open the Doors of Opportunity," at the Radisson Hotel, (near USC), 3540 S. Figueroa, Los Angeles, CA 90007.  Mistress of Ceremonies:  T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh (Performer and Alumnus).  Keynote Speaker: Lisa Collins (Publisher, LA Focus on the Word). 2013 Bernard and Shirley Kinsey Awardees: Micheal Rouse (V.P. of Diversity and Philanthropy/ Community Affairs, Toyota) and Carmen Smith (V.P. Global Strategies for Diversity, The Walt Disney Company).  Distinguished Alumni Honoree: Roy Wood, Jr. (Actor / Comedian).  Reception begins at 11am.  Lunch begins at 12N.  Tickets: $75 Adults, $40 Students. There will be raffles and Door Prizes.  Proceeds go towards scholarships for California students attending Florida A & M University.  For more information visit larattlers.org or Call Monique Brackett at (310) 295-4791 or moebrackett@aol.com.

Najwa Passes the Torch
Najwa I has led one of Chicago's premiere dance companies, the Najwa Dance Corps (NDC), with West African, Carribean, Jazz and Tap numbers that have inspired audiences of all ages for more than thirty years.  The company's Black History Month Extravaganzaa Concert on Saturday, February 23, 2013, at Malcolm X College, 1900 W. Van Buren in Chicago, "Remembering, Revisting and Reflecting..." will be the last over which the Founder of the company will oficially precide.
In a tear jerking ceremony during the Kwanzaa celebration at Malcolm X College (where the company is in residence), Najwa I passed the torch of Artistic Directorship to one of her spiritual daughters and long time lead dancers, Andrea 'Najwa' Vinson. Former company members like T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh salute Mama Najwa for her many years of guidance and encouragement, and wish their sister Andrea 'Najwa' Vinson the long and prosperous reign she deserves! For tickets or more information on the Najwa Dance Corps Black History Month Extravaganzaa Concert, call (312) 850-7224, or visit http://najwadance.org/.

ACT-SO (Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics) is an enrichment program designed to recruit, stimulate, improve and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African-American high school students.  The ACT-SO program involves the dedication and commitment of community volunteers and business leaders serving as mentors and coaches to promote academic and artistic excellence.  Students compete in a local program to qualify for the National ACT-SO competition.  There are 26 categories of competition in the sciences, humanities, business, performing and visual arts.  Local competitions usually take place between March and May.  Mentors are available in many categories.  Contestants who win gold medals on the local level qualify to attend the National ACT-SO competition, which takes place in early July at the Annual NAACP Convention.  For more information or to apply, contact your local NAACP branch.   Actress / Director T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh has been a member of the Beverly Hills / Hollywood NAACP (NAACP 
POB 2349
, Hollywood, CA 90078
 (323) 464.7616) and an active supporter of its ACT-SO program since moving to Los Angeles.  The following is taken from a letter written by a parent of one of the students she coached last year:  "Good Morning T'Keyah, I'm having an excited (and proud) mom moment! Patrick is with the ACT-SO team and it's competition day.  He briefly shared his readiness for the performance. He's reviewed his notes, reflected, rehearsed...  It gave me a little smile inside to hear him say what he had gained from your feedback and what he was now confident to deliver today. I'm not particularly anxious to hear how things go. I trust that Patrick will present his best today and that it will be a rewarding experience overall.  What I really feel is gratitude to you and others that helped guide him to today. This is the beginning of a bigger journey for him and I am thankful he had this opportunity..."
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 Calling ALL 9th-12th GRADERS!  The NAACP ACTSO program is an opportunity for dedicated students to network with each other, and receive valuable feedback from respected industry professionals.  Students can compete in 26 academic categories and those who win first place  locally, qualify to attend the National ACT-SO competition July 2013, with travel and hotel expenses paid to Orlando, Florida!  National gold, silver and bronze winners win monetary prizes, scholarships and other sponsor awards. 
WHEN IS THE COMPETITION?  Branches hold competitions March-May.  This year the local Beverly Hills-Hollywood NAACP ACT-SO competition will be held at Hamilton High School, on March 23, 2013.  For application and further information, please visit http://www.beverlyhillshollywoodnaacp.org/ or call 323.464.7616
Or fill out the BHHWD NAACP online at:  https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?fromEmail=true&formkey=dDlnMU5FS0RYZHpFM0wzeFhock8zTlE6MQ.

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As you read in the last issue of The Crystal News, Maggie's Anderson's "Our Black Year" inspired me to up my own support of Black business, and I decided to find and champion at least one business per month.  January's business: Hopper Shell, 11913 Compton Ave, Los Angeles, CA, (323) 566-1667. Hooper is (sadly) the ONLY Black owned gas station in Los Angeles.  It is far from where I live, but I followed the Andersons's example and purchased gift cards from Hoopers that I can use at any Shell station. I had a lovely chat there with the friendly and courteous daughter of the station's long time owner.  She told me that her dad refused countless offers to sell, so that his grandchildren could have that legacy. I'm still searching for a Black-owned and operated gas station in Chicagoland, but for now, I found Sasafrasnet, LLC, a Black firm that sells fuel to BP and Mobil stations in the area and owns several (rented by others).  Those with Black employees include: BP, 4300 South State Street, Chicago IL,773-624-8721 and Mobile, 2074 E Sibley Blvd Prairie Ave Calumet City, IL (708) 868-5080. From Hoopers I went to Simply Wholesome,  4508 W. Slauson Ave, Los Angeles, CA (323) 294-2144.  As long time readers know, Simple Wholesome is one of my favorite places to eat in Los Angeles, but I don't go very often because it's a drive from the valley where I live.  A restaurant and grocery store, Simply Wholesome carries more Black owned / manufactured products than I've seen anywhere else.  I stocked up on everything I could and vowed to make it a once a month trip, which makes sense because they don't really offer fresh produce. The manager suggested that I go to the farmers' market for that. So I guess my decision was both to find something new and to increase my support of businesses I already knew. Feel free to follow my lead and to tell me what you found! Note that my St. Sabina Birthday Benefit was sponsored entirely by Black businesses. How cool is that?  This is where the action is...
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The Walker Group, LLC
(TWG) is a Certified Public Account & Consulting firm concentrated primarily in performing audits for not-for-profit organizations, local governments and municipalities, and entities regulated by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Our professionals take a risk-based approach to each engagement, insuring performance and operating efficiency. We go beyond traditional fundamentals to add tangible value and elevate the audit to an even more strategic and productive role in today’s corporate governance environment. 
 *Management Consulting 
 *Business Information Systems
TWG - 1431 Huntington Drive Calumet City, IL 60409
twg@thewalkergrpllc.com, rwalker@thewalkergrpllc.com
(708) 868-2545 
 Vincent E. Walker Photography
(312) 719-6830

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Maggie Brown Birthday Jam!
Maggie Brown celebrates her 50th time around the Sun on Sunday, Feb 24, 2013. Many of her musical friends will join her and "Jam" on her set at:Room 43, 1043 E. 43rd Street in Chicago. Show starts at 7:30 and the party will go until at least 'til 11:30. $10 cover. Plenty of free parking, food and libations available. There will be Cake!  Happy Birthday Maggie! 
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Keymáh on the Fly in Atlanta
On a quick trip to Atlanta, stage veteran T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh found time to check out Theatrical Outfit's fly production of, "Fly," a story of four Tuskegee Airmen (written by Ricardo Khan and Trey Ellis with musical direction and arrangements by Jmichael) playing at the Balzer Theater at Herren's, 84 Luckie Street, NW, Atlanta, GA 30303.  After the show, Keymáh congratulated director Patdro Harris and the cast: John E. Doyle, Fenner Eaddy, Joel Ishman, Eric J. Little, Doc Waller (pictured), Brian Kurlander and J.C. LongAlso hanging out that night was Keymáh's Chicago Wavelength Improv pal, actor and crooner T.C. Carson, who popped into town just to catch the show! 
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Pierce Pediatric Associates, S.C.
Pierce Pediatrics is the office of Dr. Marealita Pierce, where pediatric care is our passion!  We're located in the Chicago neighborhood of Hyde Park, only fifteen minutes south of downtown Chicago and right next to the University of Chicago! Our office is just off Lake Shore Drive, with convenient parking across the street and we're close to public transportation!
Dr. Pierce understands the emotional demands of parenting and provides empathetic support for today’s busy parents. At Pierce Pediatrics, your child is in good hands! Our goal is to provide the highest quality pediatric medical care in a pleasant and professional atmosphere.
Hyde Park Bank Building
1525 East 53rd Street, Suite 712
Chicago, IL 60615
Office: 773-643-2550
Fax: 773-643-3603
E-mail: office@piercepediatrics.com
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WHERE THE ACTION IS: T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh and The Crystal News Endorse Jan Perry for Mayor
"In the race for Los Angeles mayor, a couple of candidates stnd out, says The Crystal News editor T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh, "but I believe Jan Perry is the best choice for the city."  It seems that all of her opponents agree.  At a campaign forum at the Sinai Temple in Westwood last month, the moderator asked each of the five leading mayoral candidates who they would vote for if they couldn’t vote for themselves. Jan Perry picked Emanuel Pleitez. Everyone else picked Jan Perry.   City Controller Wendy Greuel cited Perry’s record of creating jobs downtown and noted that Perry, like Greuel, would give Angelenos the chance to elect the city’s first woman mayor. City Councilman Eric Garcetti said Perry inspired him by fighting for the causes in which she believes. Kevin James, the lone Republican in the race, said he’d vote for Perry because she exposed “back-room dealings” at City Hall, and Pleitez, a technology executive, also picked Perry for her “courage” in admitting mistakes. While no candidate is perfert, Perry has both the experience and the independence to lead the city in a better direction. "I am running for mayor because all of the reasons my opponents pointed out, L.A. City Councilwoman Perry says, "to create jobs, fight to make sure all Angelenos have an opportunity to succeed, make city hall an open and transparent place where back-room deals are a thing of the past, and be a courageous, independent mayor who puts the interests of residents first.  The primary will be held March 5, 2013.  For more information, visit www.janperry.com/.   This is where the action is...
Thank you to: Everyone who sent me a holiday card (or email); Munir Muhammed for having so many of my talented Birthday Benefit for St. Sabina stars like Cynda Williams, Tim Miller and Reggie Reg on your show;  my line sister Sherry McFarland for helping me pack when my ankles were sprained; everyone else who made my fall trip to Tallahassee wonderful; Soul Vegetarian for your consistently delicious food;  Phena for your scrumptious Patty Wagon veggie patties; the cast of crew of BET’s Let’s Stay Together for giving me such a warm welcome; everyone else who made my recent trip to Atlanta wonderful; Interim President (and hopefully future President) Dr. Larry Robinson for holding down the fort so well; and my St. Sabina Birthday Benefit sponsors: Florida A & M University, Orbert Davis’s Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, Nubian Heritage, Vincent E. Walker Photography (312) 719-6830, The Walker Group, LLC, CHRIS CURSE & Co, Pierce Pediatric Association, Southside Community Credit Union, and Human Resources Development Institute, Inc ! MUAH!  And I mean it!!!!
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Chris Curse and Co. 773-537-5155
Chris is an award winning professional stylist who trains stylists in the U.S.A, Europe, and South Africa. Chris prides himself on being a healing hair care specialist and specializes in precision cutting, hair growth, and undetectable hair extensions.
Hours (CST):Tuesday - Extensions and Keratin Treaments Only
Wednesday-Saturday - 10am-7pm
Additional info:TUESDAY APPOINTMENTS (sew ins & keratins only) - Glam Luxe Boutique, 2240 S. Michigan Ave
WEDNESDAY APPOINTMENTS- Compagnia della Belleza 1500 N. Wells
NEW! WED & SUN APPTS W/SENIE- 1007 E. 53rd St
THURS - SAT APPOINTMENTS - Page Too @ 1007 E. 53rd St
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Congratulations to:  Harry J. Lennix whose new film, "Mr. Sophistication" got rave reviews at its Chicago screening; LaFern and Bill Cusack on the birth of their adorable baby boy, Davey Cusack; Andre Minkins whose new show "The Barren Room" debuts at the North Carolina Civil Rights Museum February 8-10; Kyle Massey, Chris Massey and their mom, Angel Massey for winning the law suit over the (Massey / Palin) reality show they created; Pitzer student Romarilyn Baker for being awarded the Osher Scholarship and Rhonda Payne, on being selected by State Senator Curren D. Price as one of his 2013 SHeroes (women who have demonstrated leadership, pride, volunteerism and commitment to her community in a remarkable manner)  - go on girl woman!
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The Crystal News respectfully acknowledges the life and transition of: Leroy "Sugarfoot" BonnerPrecious BryantAmina CachaliaRobert F. ChewRoss "Satchel" Davis, Terry Glover, James HoodAenki KassieEd KochTony Martin, Deacon Harold Neiman, James RogersAaron SwartzTyrice ThompsonEarl WilliamsCecil Womack, Hadiya Pendleton and too many other beautiful children (lost on the streets of Chicago and other places) to name...

We are blessed to have known their warm heart, bright smiles and good works.  We are inspired to follow their brave and noble examples.

 Have you hugged someone you love today?
Nubian Heritage

 Stay Tuned... 
T'Keyah may be coming to a city near you!


  1. Another great issue. The event at the Du Sable sounds wonderful!


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