Who’s Shining? Shonda Rhimes is

shonda_rhimesYou may or may not know who Shonda Rhimes is. But, you have no doubt heard of her work. From ABC’s Private Practice to Grey’s Anatomy, Rhimes has been flexing her writing and producing muscles behind the scene of some of our favorite late night dramas for some time now. And she isn’t stopping any time soon. A beautiful, talented woman of color with limitless ability, she has continued to change Hollywood around her, setting the standard in television. Because of her great work, graceful demeanor, and immeasurable flair for uplifting her community through positive characters of color, she is definitely “Shining.” [Read more…]

Black & Missing and Black Girls Rock! Walked For Hope

BGR Hope 5kThere are quite a few worthy causes out there for women of color. Two in particular are the Black & Missing Foundation and Black Girls Rock! Inc.. On May 25th, Black & Missing sponsored a 5k walk/run called, “Hope Without Boundaries.” And, many prominent figures in the black community were there including Michael Baisden, Jacque Reid, our own “Shining” inductee, Michaela Angela Davis, and Beverly Bond. The event, though it saw little widespread press, was meant to give back to the black community. So, we are featuring it here to spotlight “Giving” opportunities, organizations, and events for women of color. [Read more…]

Frenemies? Women of Color & Corporate America

Multi-racial business team sitting around an office boardroomCorporate America is a very interesting place. In many respects, it represents opportunity, growth, and possibility. But, since it has always been an environment dominated by “good old boys” and mainstream American ideals, it has not necessarily been the most welcoming place for women of color. In many respects, the very crooked rooms that these women seek to escape in their daily lives are emboldened in the corporate realm, but opportunities for career growth still make mainstream industry very appealing for women of color.

In essence, corporate America has become the “frenemy” of women of color: sometimes friend, sometimes enemy. But, understanding oneself better, being uncompromising with one’s values and ideals, and understanding that every situation is not an always situation helps to mitigate some of these contradicting aspects of a central institution to America’s core capitalistic culture.

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New Documentary ‘Imagine A Future: My Black Is Beautiful’ Promotes Self-Worth for Young Black Women

Recently, we learnImagine a Futureed of a new documentary targeting young black women called “Imagine a Future: My Black Is Beautiful.” Sponsored by the big name consumer products company, Proctor & Gamble, the documentary seeks to investigate the issues young black women face with insecurities and self-worth. Working in concert with Beverly Bond and her nonprofit Black Girls Rock!, an organization dedicated to uplifting young black girls in the Brooklyn area, P&G’s My Black is Beautiful (MBIB) campaign has taken on the daunting task of reaching girls nationwide with their message of empowerment. [Read more…]

Becoming a California 501c3, Step One: Name and Mission Statement

The Worth Campaign is dedicated to becoming a California 501(c)(3). What does this mean? Well, it means that the intention of this organization will be to distribute charitable dollars and services to those most in need of them. Additionally, this will not be a for-profit business. But, this also means that I have a lot of work ahead of me.

I set this blog up so that you could follow along as I take The Worth Campaign to nonprofit status. Hopefully, documenting my process will inspire some of you to do the same because there are so many groups of people out there in need. It will be a long journey, but, through your support, we will certainly get there! [Read more…]

Press Release: Official Launch of Future 501c3 “The Worth Campaign”

facebook profile picLaunched online on March 31st, 2013, Jenn M. Jackson’s future 501c3, The Worth Campaign, sets out to empower young women of color by educating them about images and stereotypes which might cause them to question their worth. The project’s core function is to reinforce self-worth and build up young women where past experiences may have torn them down. Additionally, because the program is intended to serve high school and college-aged young women of color, The Worth Campaign will equip young women with the tools needed to traverse the tumultuous years between adolescence and adulthood.

As a young girl, Jackson found herself struggling with questions of self-worth. From her extraordinary height of over six feet tall at twelve years of age to her difficulties with her inner city surroundings, she often found herself struggling to fit in. And, in an effort to get comfortable, she would often distort or hide her true self in order to be more generally accepted by others. Not understanding what was driving her to this response, she continued the behavior through high school and college to cope with her inability to truly understand her own innate value.

She went on to attend the University of Southern California, receiving an undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering. Her interests later moved toward politics as she received a Masters in Political Science and will be starting her PhD program in fall 2014. Now, in her late twenties, Jackson has been writing about black women’s politics on Beyond Black & White while running a blog with her husband called Water Cooler Convos.

And, even with her accomplishments to date, Jackson still struggled with self-worth well into adulthood. It wasn’t until reading Melissa Harris-Perry’s 2011 book, Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes and Black Women in America, that Jackson was able to name and identify the issues she had faced for most of her life.

After joining the blogging community in 2012, Jackson began working with many women of color who each seemed to have a very different perspective of self. Reminded of her own struggles throughout high school and college, Jackson became overwhelmed with a desire to truly make a difference for women of color. In response to a deeper understanding of herself, Jackson set out to build a community for other women like her.

The Worth Campaign was her answer to the dearth of programs addressing the unique conditions faced by many young women of color during this vital period of their personal growth. She started the project after being inspired by Harris-Perry’s prose but it was her inner desire to reach out to others like her that served as the catalyst for The Worth Campaign.

In the coming months and years, Jackson will be building upon her current networks of strong women of color to bring her vision for The Worth Campaign to fruition. She envisions a robust program of mentorship opportunities, empowerment lessons, exercises in self-worth, college preparation and a host of partnerships with community-based organizations as the foundational basis for The Worth Campaign’s high school program. For college-aged women, she hopes to align the Campaign with existing campus groups and programs supporting young women of color to provide forums, guidance, and positive reinforcement initiatives for those seeking community on their college campuses.

Follow along as The Worth Campaign develops into a full-fledged nonprofit organization. There are great things in store for this vital and needed project.worthSignature