It’s Woman History Month! Let’s celebrate the amazing contributions women make to our world and our future.
We are so fortunate to have several remarkable women from our community who are going to share their journey as we as answer any question you may have for them.
Come join Momsrising THIS Saturday March 18th 2017 Beatties Ford Rd. Regional Library at 1pm; as we highlight and celebrate our selected SHEROES!
The award ceremony and roundtable includes a “Dress Up-Fantasy” area for the children and a light reception following.This event is free! So come on! Ready to attend? Well it’ll be here in no time. For now get to know more about each of them here.
Meet Chautauqua Ellison, NC SHERO
Born February 24, 1973, on a Saturday evening to Glenda Graves (American) and Herman Morris (Guyanese). A product of both the foster care system and adoption system. Adopted at the age of 15 after going from one abusive foster family to another and having experienced abuse with the family she hoped to have finally found love and her place of belonging only to feel the cycle of being not wanted, she came to understand what she wanted part of her journey to be. She understood she wanted to help little brown girls like herself.
A graduate of Marlboro County High School in 1992 and immediately went off to college. She attended Morris College in Sumter, SC, Commissioned as 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army, April 1997 and graduated May 10th, 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts in English.
After graduating from college Chautauqua moves to Charlotte, NC and this is where she began her career in Early Education. Chautauqua has taught Early Education for 19 years. She is also a former HeadStart Educator.
Chautauqua became a member of the Order of Eastern Star, Queen Sheba #5 at the age of 21 and is still active with the Junior Eastern Stars affiliated with her chapter. At this time she began to have a full experience with SISTERHOOD.
Fast forward to the year 2010 and Chautauqua becomes involved with an amazing organization called I Am My Sister. She has facilitated evidence-based program pm Teen Pregnancy and Teen STDs/STI for 4 years for the organization. In 2013 Chautauqua started the first community-based club for the organization. In January of 2016, she became the Executive Director for I Am My Sister NC and SC chapter.
I Am My Sister is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides programs and resources centered around leadership development, healthy relationships, beauty and body image, career development, community service and support, entrepreneurship and workforce development, financial literacy, adolescent sexual health and teen parenting support, education and mentoring services for youth and their families.
I Am My Sister’s programs and services are available to youth and families in NC, SC, MD, NY, GA and CA.
I Am My Sister LOVES diversity! We’re PRO-YOUNG PEOPLE and don’t discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, ethnicity, religion, national origin, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex or disability.
Along with being an active member of the OES (Order of Eastern Star), Chautauqua is also an active member of the Black Women Caucus of Mecklenburg , a member of the School Leadership Team at Lincoln Heights School (CMS) and a member of The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
Chautauqua was also a nominee for the 2017 Mayor’s Mentor Alliance Award.
Chautauqua also lives by her personal motto: In order to teach life lessons, one must have lived the lesson beginning taught.
Meet Amanda Zullo, Founder + Owner
Pop Up Produce
Amanda Zullo is the Founder and Owner of Pop Up Produce and a 2016 Emerging City Champions grant recipient winner, sponsored by 8 80 Cities and the Knight Foundation. A designer, community engager and food enthusiast, she has a passion for health and wellness, sustainable living and fresh food. Amanda earned her Masters in Urban Design with a Post-Masters Certificate in Real Estate Development, a Bachelors of Architecture, and a Bachelors of Arts in Architecture with a Minor in Geography, all from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. In both academic and professional realms, her focus has been to foster healthy communities through the built environment using design towards community activism. She has been involved in numerous local volunteer organizations, from educating the youth through various programs and work relating to community outreach.
Meet 2017 NC Shero: Nakisa Glover
She is a mom, native of Charlotte, NC and holds a biology degree from UNC-Charlotte.
She has built a track record as a community organizer, with years of experience in corporate, community and service-based work. She has a passion for advocacy and contributing positively to the community. She is the co-host of TheAgenda, a local think tank dedicated to creating space built on four pillars to Inform, Discuss, Network and take Action. As a strong collaborator, she brings her perspective to her current role with Hip Hop Caucus as National Climate Justice Organizer. She is the former national field coordinator for the Justice Action Mobilization Network (JAMN), a group dedicated to advancing climate change policy using a fusing social justice and climate justice. Her deep local and national networks mean that Ms. Glover has resources and contacts for dealing effectively with such critical issues as climate, social and economic justice. She was recently recognized as an Emerging Leader in the Climate Movement and is the recipient of the Clean Air Carolina the 2016 Airkeeper Award, joining NC Governor Roy Cooper, Dr. James Kenny, and other business leaders.
Meet NC Shero; Je’lah Singleton.
Jèlah Singleton, aka D-Jé Boogie, is a teenage female DJ who has presently been developing her craft for a little over a year. The idea of aspiring to become a DJ occurred when she realized how she could share her creativity and her love for music with others. D-Jé believes music has no boundaries or barriers. The art of being a DJ bridges gaps of age, ethnicity and various backgrounds.
Music has always been a huge part of D-Jé Boogie’s life. Sharing her craft allows her to share her love for the innocence and different moods of music. The variety of DJ engagements allows her to choose and ‘’play with” the appropriate genre of music for any occasion.
Becoming a DJ has required the investment in equipment, time and learning the art of the craft. She enrolled in classes, which enhanced her love for mixing and transitioning music. While attending the WTHands DJ Academy, D-Jé Boogie was selected to appear on WBTV for one their young DJ spots. That exposure improved her confidence to perform in front of crowds. Entrepreneurship has proven to be challenging and has also required discipline. However, entrepreneurship has also allowed D-Jé Boogie, as a teenager, to be her own boss. The God-given gift of her love for music will continue to reach people of all ages and allow her to share their special moments.
Although DJ Boogie has been trained to provide the appropriate music for many occasions, she has been labeled as having an Old Soul. Her personal music of choice is different genres of music from the 1960s -1990s
Meet NC Shero; Flo Ward, We Chic’d It
Flo is a creative environmentalist and DIYer. She used her prior experiences to start We Chic’d It!, a furniture upcycling company based in North Carolina with the mission to help keep usable solid wood antique and vintage furniture from going into our landfills.
After completing her undergraduate work in Fine Arts, she worked as a graphic designer for several publishing/marketing companies, such as AutoTrader and Pilot Media Companies, until switching careers and going back to school to become an educator/trainer of technology within the school system. Now, several years later, she uses her knowledge of color, DIYing (do it yourself crafts), and education to teach others how to refinish, refurbish, reupholster, and repurpose their home furniture and decor items. Becoming the Queen DIYer/Upcycling Creationist that everyone knows her to be. Always thinking outside of the box, and generating ideas on Facebook, Pinterest, and HomeTalk. She is a married, mother of three and lives in the Lake Norman area, near Charlotte, North Carolina.
Meet NC Shero; Judith Wilson, – Foodie4Access
Judith Wilson Burkes is a nonprofit founder, author/blogger, internet radio host, community disability advocate and business owner.
Growing up in New York City, she developed a passion for the arts and all creativity. After attending an art high school against the wishes of her family, Judith tried to work for corporate America. She worked for various industries, usually finding a way to bring her love of creativity to the job, for more than 15 years, before her health made her leave the workforce in her mid-30s. She faced hardship in her relationships as well, as two marriages ended in divorce, leaving her to raise two sons on the autism spectrum virtually by herself. Despite her own health issues, Judith continued to work at home, first with her own graphic design company, and then virtually for technology-driven companies.
Moving from NY to MD, and now making Charlotte, NC her home, Judith formed her own nonprofit, Foodie4Access in 2016, to break down barriers of isolation faced by people and families touched by disability. Then, after meeting the founder of a local singles organization, Judith quickly saw the value of his idea to do for Christian singles what she was driven to do for people with disabilities.
With her two sons grown and independent, Judith now spends her time creating inclusive events that focus on changing lifestyles and mindsets.
Today, as President of The Single, Saved and Serious Movement and founder of Foodie4AccssCLT, she hopes to foster a sense of community among people who want to expand their social and entertainment horizons, while making a difference in local underserved communities, with small businesses and outreach organizations poised to make a difference.
“Do Not wait for someone else to come and speak for you. It’s you who can change the world”. -M.Y.
This gathering is in part sponsored by Momsrising. To RSVP and find out more information, visit our Facebook event at: https://goo.gl/NXoUDw or follow along on Twitter with NCSheroes2017