Actor Julian Brittano Partners With International Association of Women on New Venture To Honor Women

Julian Brittano is not only a rising actor on the move, but an activist and voice for various cause based organizations for women. We spoke with him about his new partnership with IAW ( formerly NAPW,) along with taking a deeper look into the man in front of the lens.

Most fans know you from being apart of the “Greenleaf” show cast, which is produced by Oprah Winfrey. What were you doing before acting, and how did you get started.

I owned a club and restaurant in Virginia. Fortunately for me, I ended up having to be shut down. It messed me up for a little while, but I bounced back. I was alone one day and came to a place of clarity within myself of who I am. So the path began from there starting as a background actor for two weeks to landing on Greenleaf.

As a previous club owner and entrepreneur, how did that experience prepare you for life as an entertainer on the big screen?

Well, on the big screen and tv it is my responsibility to (entertain)engage the viewer, and have them connect to the story. So I’m able to use all of my life experiences as an entrepreneur and club owner, which has allowed me to connect and interact with many different types of cultures and lifestyles.

We know that preparation is key with anything you want to do in life. What are some things you do to prepare your each role you take on?

First I like to look at the overall vibe of the story/ agenda. Once the main characters are identified, then I imagine how my role assists in the story.

Touching a little more on entrepreneurship, what are some things you learned about overcoming failure, being persistent and consistent?

My perspective on failure is simply another opportunity to perfect ones ability to handle a given situation. We all have differentiated learning. So each consistent and persistent attempt at something allows you to learn every aspect of your business, which is a core value of being an entrepreneur.

You seem to have a deep connection working with various women’s organizations. Tell us about your experience with them, and your connection to these organizations as a young male.

As a man that was raised by strong minded women, I was privey first hand to their perspectives and views on different social issues. I’ve also been blessed to have some close female friends that confide in me. With that said, when I realized I had a platform that I can help open up conversation amongst the community by stepping into a gap that most would run from. I’m learning more and more each day that I lend my support and time to help the women empowerment movement.

Speaking of women’s organizations, Tell us about your new partnership with IAW ( formerly NAPW), and was it so important for you partner with them in particular.

They offer a valuable resource of collective networks amongst women of three generations due to the commonality of entrepreneurship and business. I feel like partnering with groups like IAW in particular adds a component to my SOW (Save Our Women) initiative. Which at the end of the day thats is why RTB is a great platform for all women to come together, celebrate and learn from one another.

What are some of the goals that you hope to accomplish through your partnership with this organization?

I would like to see more balance in our society at large between men and women. I also am believing that this will serve as a platform that other male supporters can join in and assist.

What are 3 things your fans don’t know about you that you want them to know?

1. I play multiple music instruments.
2. I used to be 320lbs at one point. But thru dedication and patience, I dropped down to 240lbs, now Veggie Life is what I enjoy.
3. I can only come up with 2.

What advice do you have for upcoming actors and importance of having patience on your way to the top?

You must be patient as well as equally aware of YOUR timing. Not what other people expect or intend for you. Know your own intentions, and why you want to attain certain levels of success. Many people want it all for the fame and popularity. I say, that will all be there if you commit yourself to serving humanity first with your gifts and talents.

Black Panther Brings Big Bucks to Georgia’s Economy

Written By Aysha Chaudhry

One of the most hyped-about superhero movies of all time is also making the Georgia economy some big bucks. As part of Atlanta’s bid to become the next Hollywood, the state of Georgia have been luring big movie and television productions down to the Peach State, and it’s been paying off.

Marvel’s newest venture, Black Panther, has made Georgia almost $90 million in revenue from local vendor and small business purchases. The VP of Marvel had nothing but good things to say about Georgia and continues to bring productions there, including Avengers: Infinity War, which will be released later this year. Looks like the movie business is booming for Georgia and there is no sight of it slowing down!

Bravo TV Reality Star, Entrepreneur, and Real Estate Agent Genise Shelton Covers the Jan/Feb 2018 Issue of VEU Magazine

Bravo TV Reality Star, Entrepreneur, and Real Estate Agent Genise Shelton Covers the Jan/Feb 2018 Issue of VEU Magazine. We spoke to Genise about her entrepreneurial journey, her journey to reality TV, and the start of her sex trafficking foundation Our Children’s Keeper.  In this issue we also feature R&B Singer VEDO on his musical career  from being on THE VOICE Television show, to his continued journey as a singer and songwriter, Orlando nightlife entrepreneur Tony Khuu, and Becky Davis. We also have our usual business, entrepreneurship and other lifestyle articles in health, fashion,  food and more.

The Stars of 2017: Women Who Had an Amazing Year

Photo from SZA Facebook

Written by Aysha Chaudhry

1. Issa Rae – By now, Issa Rae’s name has become synonymous with self-made; the HBO star built her rapport on YouTube and now has every major studio knocking on her door. The second season of her hit show, Insecure, premiered this summer and has already been renewed for a third season. She’s poised to star in and produce some major productions in 2018 and we can’t wait to see what comes next for her.

2. SZA – Named the best album of 2017 by Time, SZA’s debut album, Ctrl, gave us the platinum-selling hits “The Weekend” and “Love Galore.” She has a tour with Bryson Tiller under her belt this year and has five (yes five!) nominations for the 2018 Grammy Awards. Looks like this girl is unstoppable!

3. Gal Gadot – Gal Gadot had a unique challenge set out before her when she starred as Wonder Woman. In movie category dominated by alpha-male characters (how many superheroes do we see that are actually women?), she had to not only deliver a performance strong enough to carry a movie with a $100+ million production budget, but she was automatically expected to be a role model for young women. Wonder Woman became the highest-rated superhero movie on Rotten Tomatoes and was an international commercial success. Well done, Gal.

4. Rihanna – We all know Rihanna delivers on everything she ventures into but her Fenty Beauty line, which launched this year, was groundbreaking on so many levels. After battling body shamers and naysayers who said that diverse foundation colors don’t sell, she released a 40-shade makeup line at Sephora and sold out almost immediately. It’s estimated that RiRi made $72 million from Fenty Beauty in one month. If that isn’t inspiring, I don’t know what is.

This New Serena Williams Ad Featuring Her Daughter Will Give You All the Feels

Written By Aysha Chaudhry

Click Here To Watch The Full Video

Serena Williams and Gatorade teamed up to create a tear-jerking commercial urging Serena’s newborn daughter (and girls around the world) to “Keep Playing.”

While Serena’s daughter doesn’t star in the commercial directly, the message is to inspire Alexis Ohanian Jr. and today’s children to keep playing sports even if they don’t end up playing professionally. Beyond the obvious health benefits, kids can gain a number of life skills from sports including teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving.

This message is incredibly important for young girls, as they are six times more likely to stop playing sports in middle school and high school, compared to boys. This is a huge issue since the vast majority of women in the workplace say that past or current sports participation improved them in some way. The end of the video gives life to this statistic by sharing images of powerful women in the spotlight of when they were younger and actively involved in sports.

Thank you to Serena and Gatorade for executing this message in a personal, emotional and memorable way for women in the workplace now and for the next generation.

Click Here to Watch The Full Commercial

This is How Some of Your Favorite Celebrities Are Using Their Cash for Good

Written by Dominique Bancey

Do you ever sit and wonder what exactly all these celebrities do with the bundles of cash they collect? Other than buying themselves fancy houses, cars, jewelry, and clothes, what do they use it for?

One smart thing some celebrities do with their money at some point in time, is start a charity or foundation to provide for those in need. Here is a list of some celebrities who give back.

Russell Simmons. His foundation, Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, is focused toward young people in America who face disadvantages. It gives them the opportunity to practice art.

Denzel Washington. He has donated $1 million to Wiley College.
– Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson. He has a scholarship program called, Taylor Michaels Scholarship Program, which allows students who are considered to be a minority, the opportunity to gain financial support, a laptop, a yearly leadership conference and mentorship and internship opportunities.

Usher. His New Look Foundation was created to allow inner-city children to be able to achieve their dreams.

Sheryl Lee Ralph. She created the Diva Foundation which helps to raise awareness and fund HIV/AIDS prevention.

Jennifer Hudson. She has teamed up with Weight Watchers’ Lose for Good Campaign to assist in the fight against world hunger.

Kerry Washington. She has joined the Uptown Girls Benefit to uplift young women in Bronx, New York, to fight against the afflicting statistics they face.

Robyn ‘Rihanna’ Fenty. She created a foundation in the name of her grandparents’. The Clara Lionel Foundation is geared towards children in the Caribbean who would like to attend university in the states but cannot afford it.

There are many other celebrities who do the best they can to support and help the less fortunate in the world. Many times we do not notice the good these celebrities do, because the media tends to focus on the more awful things.

How about we turn that around?

Let’s focus on the positive instead of the negative.

Until next time.

Tiffany Haddish Made History Hosting Saturday Night Live

Photo: NBC

Written by Dominique Bancey

Do you watch Saturday Night Live? Ever heard of it? Seen gifs or videos from an episode or two?
Whether your answer was yes or no, it doesn’t matter. Saturday Night Live is becoming the talk of the town, and here’s why:

They have made history!
“What kind of history?” You may ask.

Tiffany Haddish became the very first black female to host SNL in its 43 seasons. That is quite shocking, isn’t it? 43 years, and not one single black female has ever been a host. At least now it has been done. So is this a step in the right direction? Does this mean that we shall look out for more black females hosting SNL in the near future?

I’d like to think so, but only time can truly tell.

So who exactly is Tiffany Haddish? What does she do? Where is she from?
Well, did you watch Girls Trip? No? Did you at least see the advertisements? I’m sure you could not have avoided those.

Tiffany is best-known for co-starring in Girls Trip, even though that isn’t her first movie, and hopefully will not be her last. She is a comedian and actress and I know I cannot be the only one waiting to see what else she has in store. As a matter of fact, she is set to star in the upcoming film, Night School in 2018. Kevin Hart will also be featured in the film. Should be an interesting watch with those 2, shouldn’t it?

But while we are on the lookout for her starring in any other movies, we are also on the lookout for any more records being broken, especially by SNL (maybe the first 5 black female hosts?).

Fingers crossed.

Until next time.

Jada Pinkett Smith & More Honored at 2017 HBCU Power Awards

On  October 20th, 2017  Morehouse College presented the HBCU Power Awards in Atlanta, Ga during its homecoming weekend. Hundreds of guests gathered at Martin Luther King Jr International Chapel in Atlanta to celebrate eight individuals who have made significant achievements in their respective fields: actress Jada Pinkett Smith, Coltrane Curtis (founder, Team Epiphany), Kyle Hagler (president, Next Management), Nzinga Shaw (Chief Diversity Officer, Atlanta Hawks), Keinon Johnson (VP, Urban Promotions, Interscope Records), Phylicia Fant (SVP, Publicity, Warner Bros Records), Beverly Anderson (EVP, Cards & Retail Services, Wells Fargo) and Rob Rumley (Chair, Atlanta Housing Authority).

Produced by Morehouse alums Derek “Fonzworth Bentley” Watkins (c/o ’96), Jash’d Kambui Belcher (c/o ’99) and Roderick Hardamon (c/o ’98), the HBCU Power Awards was full of exceptional moments: an opening “Swag Surfin'” performance by the Morehouse Glee Club and Horns section; co-host Deon Cole keeping the audience laughing; the crowd singing along to “Focus” during R&B singer H.E.R’s performance; an impromptu stroll in the aisles from an Omega Psi Phi frat; the music by DJ Trauma; Coltrane Curtis’ emotional tribute to his late father; and Jada Pinkett Smith’s moving words on the dynamics of power and the responsibility we all have to manage it wisely.

Special guests included producer Will Packer, supermodel Jessica White, actor Michael Jai White, style expert Tai Beauchamp, Atlanta Hawks Foundation EVP David Lee, creative consultant and entrepreneur Taiye Samuel, radio/tv personality Gary “With The Tea” Hayes, singer Dondria Nicole, rapper Silento, author Zane and many more.

Photography provided by Marcus Ingram of MIE Images

Hill Harper, Mayor Kasim Reed & More Attend Dr. Jackie Walters’ “50 Shades of Pink” Fundraiser

On Saturday October 14th, the 50 Shades of Pink Foundation, founded by award-winning OBGYN and tv personality Dr. Jackie Walters, presented its 5th Annual Fashion Show Fundraiser in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Atlanta, Ga.  Atlanta City Hall was immaculately transformed into a pink wonderland of chic decor and “Great Gatsby” glamour, as over 200 guests – dressed in 1920s flapper-style attire – filled the Atrium to celebrate the breast cancer survivors and supporters featured on the runway.
The event began with a heartfelt poem by Hank Stewart followed by welcome remarks from Atlanta Municipal Court Judge and honorary event chair Terrinee Gundy and 50 Shades of Pink Foundation executive director Gary Andrews. Andrews then introduced the evening’s host — actor/author/philanthropist Hill Harper, who shared his story of being diagnosed with cancer several years ago.
The fashion show opener was a lively tap dance routine by Chloe Arnold’s Syncopated Ladies, after which, dozens of beautiful models strutted the runway in designs by Linda Bezuidenhout and Bramer Leon Couture. The sight of the models – many of whom were recent cancer “warriors” – was inspiring and illustrated the foundation’s mission of catering to the emotional well-being of breast cancer patients and their families.
After the fashion presentation, Hill Harper and Dr. Jackie led an auction to find individual donors to sponsor the 50 Shades of Pink’s signature Gift Basket Program, which provides women with critical items needed to look good and feel good during treatment. The auction resulted in funding for over 100 women to receive baskets.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed closed the program with a surprise check for $20,000 to the foundation to further their efforts to bring comfort and care to breast cancer survivors. Special guests in attendance were Atlanta City Councilwoman Keisha Lance Bottoms, “Married to Medicine” stars Dr. Heavenly Kimes, Mariah Huq, Curtis Berry and many more.
Sponsors of the 50 Shades of Pink Fundraiser were Ford Motor Company, The Cochran Firm, Coca-Cola, Jack Daniels, All N One Security Services and JMW Entertainment. 
Special thanks to event executive producer Eboni Cummings,S.T.E.P.S. Events and the City of Atlanta.
For more information on the 50 Shades of Pink Foundation, visit 50ShadesofPinkFoundation.org.

3 Ways Issa Rae is Taking Hollywood By Storm

Written by Valerie Holland

Unapologetic with her periodically controversial sound bites, yet still adored by millions of fans, Issa Rae is a force to be reckoned with. She has carved a lane on a highway that everyone thought was full. Beginning her public debut as a YouTube personality and turning that brainchild into an HBO hit comedy is nothing short of astonishing. At 31, the actress, writer, director and (now) Cover Girl is opening the minds of young girls everywhere to all of the possibilities at the crossroads of hard-work and determination. Thus, below are just a few reasons why Jo-Issa “Issa” Rae Diop is stealing the hearts of her fans and winning in 2017.

From YouTube To HBO

Just over ten years ago, when YouTube was a relatively empty place for people to post videos for their family and friends to view, no one could conceive the powerhouse it has become. Now, in addition to Justin Beiber, Issa Rae has become a name synonymous with YouTube’s magical ability to launch people into super stardom. Beginning with her “Awkward Black Girl” YouTube series in 2011, just 6 years later, Issa now carries the accolades of Golden Globe nominee, New York Times Bestseller and HBO producer on her curriculum vitae (not that she’ll ever have to use it again).

She’s  Becoming a Pop Icon

From her iconic wardrobe on Insecure, to the Spotify playlists inspired by the show’s phenomenal sound tracks, Issa is making a huge impression on American pop culture. Her recent Lemon Pepper Kickback party hosted right here in Atlanta, GA sparked serious envy on social media by fans that were crying to be invited to the next event. A call for turning the star-studded gathering into an annual festival was even requested by some fans. The jury is still out on whether Issa, Donald Glover and her other celeb friends will grace the streets of Atlanta with a another party, but her down-to-earth attitude and relatable shenanigans definitely has her 1.3 million Instagram followers hooked on her unique style and tastes.

The Newest Face of Cover Girl

As if having a hit HBO comedy series wasn’t enough, Issa Rae along with Ayesha Curry have become two of the latest additions to the coveted “Cover Girl” club. After Queen Latifah widened the door for women of color in 2006, the beauty world has clung to the new paradigm and now Issa has become memorialized in its Hall of Fame as well. On her Instagram announcement of the news, Issa wrote “I remember being an awkward black girl in high school, reading the pages of my favorite magazines, casually flipping through @COVERGIRL ads, singing their slogan in my head. Never EVER in my life did I imagine I’d be one. I am SO honored and SO excited for what’s to come.”

Considering all that Issa has accomplished in the relatively few years she has been in the Hollywood limelight, I for one, look forward to all that is to come for her as well. Meanwhile, I’ll continue to wait for the 2018 premiere of Insecure Season 3, keeping my fingers crossed that we’ll soon get more than 8 episodes or longer than 30 minutes. I’d pay good money for either.