MatzoBall Founder Andy Rudnick is Today’s Honoree

While Jewish Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers are settling in for a night of Chinese takeout and movies this Christmas Eve, the Jewish urban 18-34 crowd will be dancing and flirting the night away at the 31st annual MatzoBall – multi-city lavish parties at top nightclub venues, where young Jewish singles party till dawn with the hope of finding the one.

It all began when founder, Andy Rudnick, organized his first Christmas Eve bash at a Boston University-area bar in 1986 for Jewish college students looking for something to do on Christmas Eve (and meeting his own wife in the process). It’s become a Jewish rite-of-passage, filled with stories about some lucky partygoers actually finding their bashert,
getting married and “making their own little matzoballs” as Rudnick puts it.

For many families, it’s become a multi-generational tradition. Parents met at a MatzoBall party in decades past, and in recent years their children are attending in hopes of lightning striking a second time.

According to Jewish synagogue franchise, Chabad.org, “many people are discovering the wisdom of serious dating and focusing on compatibility. A good place to start is in the hub of your local Jewish community.” Nationwide  MatzoBall parties are that very hub,
where young Jewish singles congregate in a fun, social, party atmosphere and meet other Jewish singles, to expand their social and romantic prospects, sans Internet and dating apps.

Visit http://matzoball.org/ for more information.

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Daddy Saturday Creator Justin Batt is Today’s Honoree

Justin created Daddy Saturday: A Dad’s Guide to Intentional Fatherhood by creating epic moments with your children in order to raise good kids who become great adults. It’s his solution to the fatherhood crisis and it started in his own household and with his own children. Early on he realized the importance of being intentional with the time he had each Saturday with his own children and their desire to have epic moments and memories with their Dad. Each Saturday, Justin and his four children embark on a new epic adventure which are filmed for their YouTube channel. Past episodes include epic moments like a bubble wrap battle, trampoline pool, blue crabbing, beach sports, magic bubbles, blind taste test and more. Ultimately, Justin’s passion to help other Dad’s become intentional father’s and experience the same positive growth in their kids fueled the creation of the platform Daddy Saturday. The book titled Daddy Saturday is in publication with a release date in spring of 2018.

Visit  www.daddysaturday.com  for more information.

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Zuvaa Founder Kelechi Anyadiegwu is Today’s Honoree

I started Zuvaa because I wanted to see change in the fashion industry. As an African-American Woman of Nigerian Heritage I grew up with African textiles, they were always an integral part of my culture. Growing up, I often found it difficult to find modern and trendy African Inspired pieces. I created Zuvaa to fill this void.

At Zuvaa, we’re shining a light on African Fashion. The Zuvaa Marketplace is a premier online destination to find unique and one of kind African Inspired pieces. We work directly with emerging designers around the world to bring you the best selection of high quality, one of kind African Inspired pieces the industry has to offer.

Our mission is to empower designers worldwide with the tools to enter a global market and to make woman around the world feel bold and beautiful in vibrant and eccentric African inspired designs. Through this we are not only shining a light on African Fashion, but we are also shining a light on Africa. We are changing perceptions of Africa and Africans through fashion.

As the African Fashion industry becomes globalized, we want to make sure those who are taking advantage of this global industry are the ones who truly understand and appreciate the beauty and cultural significance of African textiles and aesthetics. Our grassroots approach to merchandising allows us to truly tap talent of designers on the African continent and in the diaspora. These are the designers who should be shaping the African Fashion industry and we are giving them a platform to tell their stories.

Zuvaa is not just an online store, we are a community, we are a movement. We are fashion lovers worldwide who not only seek to support ethically manufactured and produced pieces, but look to make a statement. We are all about making Bold Statements in Bold Prints. Zuvaa, inspired by the Shona language of Zimbabwe word ‘Zuva’ meaning sunshine, represents the vibrancy and radiance of African culture and how our customers’ personal light shines through African aesthetics.

Visit http://www.magazine.zuvaa.com/ for more information.

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Author and Motivational Speaker Jessica Cross is Today’s Honoree

About The Book:

For so many years, Sandra had worked and strived toward her ideal of the perfect life. By most people’s standards, she had it all – the handsome, upwardly-mobile husband; a respected career at the university; and a nice home, that was ready to receive a child or two under its roof. Like so many of us, Sandra had a vision of the ideal future she’d wanted to create. She thought she knew where life would take her and how things would unfold. But Sandra’s perfect life in suburbia began to show some cracks; and in her weakest moment, she relaxed her morals and grabbed the passion her life had been missing. Like a starving woman, her mouth watered for the fine chocolate that was offered her and she couldn’t resist temptation. Yet one bite of chocolate is never enough – especially for a woman who’s been hungering for sweet satisfaction for too long. Just like a dieter regrets giving in to temptation, so did Sandra; and like a weak dieter, she went back for more of the heavenly goodness that fed her ravenous appetite. She couldn’t get the taste out of her mind and she went back for more – again and again. As she fed her awakened appetite, her perfect world spun out of control. Secrets and passions would collide for a cataclysmic undoing of not only Sandra’s world, but the lives of many others too.

About The Author:

Jessica Cross is an author, speaker, and activist. Jessica the author of Crossed Lines: What Lies Buried Within the Heart. As a former educator and stroke victim, she is an activist in education and wellness. Jessica also is an entrepreneur and enthusiast for women empowerment.

Visit www.jessicarcross.com for more information.

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Ayers Publicity CEO Kiki Ayers is Today’s Honoree

Ke’Andrea “Kiki” Ayers is an Entertainment Journalist and Producer. Growing up in a single parent household, Ayers uses the struggles of her past to motivate her future. From growing up poor, she reflects on a time when she lived in a 1996 white Ford Taurus with her mom, sister and brother at the age of 16. Ayers said that didn’t stop her from making honors in high school but pushed her to take her education to the next level.

At the age of 16 she started attending a community college and graduated with both her high school diploma and Associates Degree in Communications. In 2008, Ayers transferred to Howard University in Washington, DC where she graduated with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.She got her start in the entertainment industry by interning in the Promotions Department with DC’s #1 radio station WPGC 95.5 FM.  It didn’t take Ayers long before she made her mark within the company and earned the nickname “super intern.”

She continued to land internships with notable companies such as MTV, Atlantic Records and NBC News.In January of 2010, Ayers started interning with BET and just 3 weeks into the internship she was employed as a Production Assistant. Ayers started working major productions in college and to date her production credits include but are not limited to the MTVU Sun Music Festival, WPGC Birthday Bash, BET Awards, BET Hip-Hop Awards, MTV Video  Music Awards, Super Bowl XLV, BET Rip The Runway, and The Grammy’s.Ayers moved to New York After graduation to pursue her career in television. While in New York, she worked on the Jerry Springer show. She also worked on shows such as Guy Code, Girl Code and Wild N Out at MTV2 while freelancing with MTV News.Ayers quit her job at MTV2, packed her bags and moved to Atlanta. After just 2 days in the ATL, she landed a job as an Associate Producer, working on a reality show on BBC America. After just 3 weeks in Atlanta, she moved to LA after getting a job offer to work with Entertainment Mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs as a Music Programming Coordinator at REVOLT TV. In addition to working at REVOLT, Ayers is a freelance host and journalist for XXL, EURweb and Global Grind.

Visit http://ayerspublicity.com/the-founder/ for more information.

 

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Author Peter Rooney is Today’s Honoree

About the Book:

When an X-ray of a sore arm quickly leads to a diagnosis of Stage IV kidney cancer—one which would soon affect his bones, his lungs, lymph nodes, and brain—Peter Rooney’s life will never be the same. Faced with the prognosis of an incurable disease and armed only with the will to fight back, Immunopatient chronicles Peter’s desperate quest for hope and healing, and the experimental treatment that will give him a chance to strike back at his disease.

Detailing both the medical breakthroughs that provided Peter with cutting-edge treatment and his inspirational quest to conquer both his fear and his illness through mindfulness and positive visualization, Immunopatient is a gripping memoir, one that offers new hope to cancer patients everywhere to never give up looking for answers. Peter’s story, both humble and human, showcases the heights of medical science and the depths of human endurance, proving that anything is possible as long as you keep moving forward.

About the Author:

Peter Rooney has more than a decade’s experience working as an award-winning journalist for newspapers in Illinois and for the Associated Press in Berlin. Peter also worked alongside Gehrung Associates to help academic institutions tell their stories through the publication of research breakthroughs, unconventional wisdom from the social sciences, and other insights from academia. He was heading up communications at Amherst College when he was diagnosed with advanced stage kidney cancer, which had already progressed to his bones, lungs, lymph nodes and brain. He lives in Keene, NH, with his wife, Katharina.

Visit https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/557575/immunopatient-by-peter-rooney/9781578267149/ for more information.

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Beauty Boss Gwen Jimmere is Today’s Honoree

The first black woman to hold a patent for a natural hair care product, honoree of the Root 100 award, winner of the Black Enterprise Elevator Pitch Competition, and named one of Hello Beautiful’s 30 Under 30 Entrepreneurial Mavens, Gwen Jimmere is a frequent keynote speaker and highly requested panelist on business and entrepreneurship.

As the founder and CEO of Naturalicious, she has grown her beauty industry startup into one of the fastest growing hair care companies in the U.S. Naturalicious is the first company to develop an all-natural, patented hair care system that does the work of 13 products in only 4 simple steps, and is proven and guaranteed to take you from wash to style in less than an hour. The line is sold in select Whole Foodsstores, all Mustard Seed Market locations and other fine retailers and boutiques across the U.S., Indonesia and Trinidad.

Naturalicious was named one of the top six beauty brands in the U.S. by Black Enterprise Magazine; and was the only beauty brand invited to participate in President Obama’s Inaugural Ball, where Gwen had the honor of including her entire suite of products in all VIP gift bags. Gwen has also been featured on Fox News, TVOne, in Entrepreneur Magazine, Fast Company Magazine, The Washington Post, and Essence Magazine just to name a few.

Gwen also co-owns Pitch Proof, where she coaches and trains small business owners on how to prepare for, enter and win business pitch competitions, as well as how to successfully attract equity investment opportunities. Additionally, she consults entrepreneurs on business strategy, marketing, advertising and distribution.

Prior to beginning Naturalicious, Gwen held the position of Global Digital Marketing Manager at Ford Motor Company, overseeing and executing the big three automaker’s digital marketing strategy. Later, she went to work for Uniworld, one of the world’s largest multicultural advertising firms, where she spearheaded digital strategies for a client list that includes Ford, Home Depot, the U.S. Marines, Marriott Hotels, 3 Musketeers, and many more.

Visit http://www.gwenjimmere.com/ for more information.

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