Congratulations to ESHE Magazine founder and Editor In Chief David Jordan Jr on recently being nominated for the Distinguished Alumni Award by the University of Phoenix. David earned his MBA from the University of Phoenix in 2008. The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes outstanding alumni who have used their education to excel professionally, provide inspirational leadership to others and provide service to the community. Academically, athletically and professionally David continues to embody the essence of ESHE through his hard work. We salute you.
By David Jordan Jr
A day full of amazing spirit, great food, and cultural love; this defined Sri Lanka Day Expo 2018. Held in Pasadena, California at the City Hall building, attendees had the opportunity to fully experience a day of Sri Lankan life and culture without having to pull out their passports. The expo was put on by the Sri Lanka Foundation and this year’s event marked the 12th annual celebration.
Officially known as the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka is an island in South Asia. A country of tremendous history and diverse culture, the 2018 Expo showcased how the rich history of Sri Lanka has influenced Sri Lankan culture not only in its homeland but in the United States of America. Festive in music and food, one could walk in any direction and engage with the beauty of Sri Lanka. The main stage was home to multiple acts of entertainment throughout the day. The Sri Lanka Cultural Show presented many different types of acts for all to enjoy. Saxophonists, singers and fusion dancers all took the stage, putting on amazing performances and creating a living soundtrack for the day. The live entertainment provided a beautiful introduction to those that may not have been very familiar with traditional music and dance of Sri Lanka.
While listening to music, one could venture throughout the Expo grounds and allow their nose to carry them to any of the food vendors which were present. Many traditional dishes of the country were available everywhere for consumption. Lamprais, Sri Lankan rice & curry, and Hoppers were a few of the cuisines that countless people waited in line to have on their plates. “Hoppers, a staple of Sri Lanka cuisine was a clear favorite of many of the attendees at the 2018 expo.
Dr. Walter Jayasinghe M.D., MPH, Founder of the Sri Lanka Foundation spoke about the importance of the expo and how it’s uniqueness is a pathway for everybody to come together. “First and foremost this is the only event of this kind. It’s totally free. You can come and watch the show and totally enjoy it. It’s a mixed cultural event, a festival of food and dance, a true Family event for everybody.”
Anarkali Aakarssha, a Sri Lankan actress, Miss Sri Lanka 2004 and wife of Dishan Jayasinha (President of the Sri Lanka Foundation) talked about how important the day was and how it provided the opportunity for people who may not be very familiar with Sri Lankan culture to be a part of it for the day and learn more about it. “Sri Lankan day is like a takeover. We are so happy to be here. As Sri Lankans we are so happy to share our culture and heritage with others, especially in America where we aren’t as known and some people confuse us with other Asian countries. We have our own identity and culture that we want to share with the world. There is a lot to explore and learn about Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka Day allows non-Sri Lankans to meet Sri Lankans and find out what Sri Lanka is all about. The parade allows people to see everything from Buddhism as well as what Sri Lanka has to offer. We don’t have many platforms to showcase so I’m very excited to celebrate Sri Lanka today, come together and have a day of unity and peace.”
The mayor of Pasadena, Terry Tornek was also on hand to celebrate Sri Lanka Day 2018 and spoke to the crowd about the event and offered his congratulations.
Dishan Jayasinha, President of the Sri Lanka Foundation talked about the 2018 Expo briefly with ESHE in-depth with a Q&A discussion.
ESHE: How does the success of the 2018 Expo impact the expo going forward? Could there possibly be more Expos throughout the West Coast?
Dishan: The overwhelming success was really seen when I spoke to the volunteers while they expressed the pride they had for the country and how thankful they felt towards the Sri Lanka Foundation for putting the expo on. We are open to holding expos in other cities in the future, but for now, we are concentrating on the Southern California community.
ESHE: Describe the feedback that you all received from those that attended?
Dishan: I think the most interesting one has been the surprise of all those I talked to, in regards to the fact that Sri Lanka existed and that it has such a colorful and ancient culture which is different from others they had been exposed to.
ESHE: What makes Sri Lankan culture unique in California as opposed to other cities across the United States which may not have a large Sri Lankan populations?
Dishan: Well, there definitely is a large community in Southern California, but there are Sri Lankans in many other cities in America, but the interesting part is that we as a community blend well with other races and cultures.
ESHE: The Sri Lankan Foundation: Upcoming events/projects etc?
Dishan:We have one very cool event on November, 18th 2018 which is called the Sri Lanka Foundation Awards Ceremony. It is held in the Millennium Biltmore Hotel here in Downtown Los Angeles. The purpose of the awards is to acknowledge those Sri Lankans who have achieved great things in their own industries which by International standards are quite amazing. The reason for acknowledging them is to inspire other Sri Lankans what they are capable of achieving. This aligns with our motto “Inspire & Achieve”. Here is a link to the site —> https://www.srilankafoundation.org/awards/
For more information on the Sri Lanka Foundation CLICK HERE
By David Jordan Jr.
There are many routes to success in life. For every successful person, no two streets are alike; one can attribute many factors to forward, progressive movement. Hailing from Indianapolis, Indiana, actor and music producer Dario Lee has achieved tremendous success in his careers in both film/television and music. Driven with a passion for success that stems from GOD given talent, humility and hard work, Lee’s continued path of excellence is an inspiration for everybody to see that how genuinely investing in yourself yields unlimited returns and endless opportunities. Lee recently spoke with ESHE about his career and upcoming projects.
ESHE Magazine: What inspires you daily in your life as an actor?
Dario Lee: Well, when I first moved to Los Angeles my very first role on camera was a principal role for Buick and The NCAA which was a National SAG commercial shown during the College Basketball National championship on all major sports channels (ESPN, CBS Sports, Fox Sports,etc.). I really didn’t have any aspirations or inspiration for acting kinda fell into acting due to being behind the camera, taking direction and seeing the results of the work done which inspired me to begin the journey as an actor.
ESHE Magazine: One of the greatest things about being an actor is the process in which you become a character or characters. From your first time reading a script to you playing the character in front of a camera, describe your process in becoming the person created in writing.
Dario Lee: That’s wild cause I literally finished shooting “The Education of a Negro” where I played cpl. Roman Duckworth jr. ; an army cpl that was murdered by the police for not moving to the back of the bus in Taylorsville Mississippi. Duckworth was mistaken as a freedom rider yet he was on military leave in route to visit his wife who was expecting to give birth to their sixth child. Gathering all that information put me in the same state of mind of where he was at the time and how to play that character out. Imagining being excited, nervous, confused, offended and militant all at one time before eventually being murdered by police is how I understood how to play Cpl. Roman Duckworth jr. or any character I take up, by interpretation.
ESHE Magazine: You have appeared in many different films, videos, commercials, and television shows. Do you prepare for different genres differently or do you have the same approach?
Dario Lee: I prepare the exact same way to every role with prayer and approach the situation differently because you really don’t know what the director could come up with on the spot; he or she may have a creative epiphany on set that may change the whole scene, script or even character so my approach is treaded upon softly to the directors discretion.
ESHE Magazine: What is the best advice you have received in life, which has helped you in your career?
Dario Lee: The best advice I have received in life is that Time Is God. While visiting my grandfather in Akron Ohio, on his deathbed, he had a cross and pocket watch necklace around his neck and I remember him looking at me while rubbing the cross and pocket watch together telling me these two go together. My grandfather was an ex-gang leader in his younger years and preacher towards the end of his life and he was full of wisdom. In my interpretation of him rubbing the watch and cross together, I gather that everything happens in Gods time. When you think about it, it is. The only thing in life that we do not control is time, yet time controls us. I believe God gives me all my abilities and controls all my limbs to act, make music, play basketball or etc… That’s who I count as my agent and source cause in a blink of an eye all of it can end. Time is in control of me, not me in control of it. Do we control a car accident or national disasters? Unexpected things happen that we have no control over that trumps what we may deem as our time yet when I give into time I learn I don’t control it; it controls me. That’s why Time is God has been the best life advice I have ever received.
ESHE Magazine: You have currently begun work on a major new project, “The Education of A Negro.” Talk about this project and what inspired the writers of this film and how important it will be to the world from a historical perspective.
Dario Lee: Wow, this film is something else. The historical figures shown through Americanized television, schools and books have forever been condensed to a few when their so many important stories we have never heard. The fact that this film story focuses on major stories that were swept under rugs is so pivotal. The first day on set I arrived a little early to step in on the filming of the Emmit Till scene and it was so powerful that I had to leave the room. To think of all the stories that are being shown and depicted in this film gives me so much joy and gratefulness to be working with so many genius minded writers, producers, actors, and directors. There will be the story and depictions of silent stories of Emmit Till, Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carol Denise McNair, Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner and Cpl. Roman Duckworth Jr. These stories are so important for the community and youth; like I said that are not being taught this. I’m glad that these stories are finally being brought to the big screen February 2019, well overdue.
ESHE Magazine: Describe your outlook on life in three words
Kam Patrice, a native of Milwaukee Wisconsin, started gracing the runways as a model four years ago and has continuously made her mark in the industry. Something that initially started off as something for her to scratch off of her bucket list eventually became a fueled passion. Eyes that talk and an aura that commands the room, Kam has not only separated herself from others in the industry but she has created her own pathway. Wanting to be the face of hair care, make-up, and clothing lines, she has laid a solid foundation for success. Recently she released her second calendar, a candid year calendar of exclusive shots, displaying her unique beauty and passion for the camera. A percentage of profits from the sales of her second calendar will go to Autism Speaks. Visit KamPatrice.com to check out more.
Photographers: Brandon Best, De Nada, Michael Lawson, Nate Anderson & Steve White
Makeup Artists: Keyona Bullock Jenna Hayes Keisha Roper
Designers: Deborah Render, Kelvin Haydon
Creative Director: Johnathon Thompson
Instagram | @ thereal_kam_patrice
By David Jordan Jr
The college experience is the training ground and life teacher for many people as it is then they began to formulate the ideas and plans for success and future goals in life. Each college provides a unique experience to its students, but none hail in comparison to the ones experienced by those that choose to attend an HBCU. Historically Black Colleges and Universities were born out of necessity, as blacks in the United States of America had no options for education other than the ones which they created for themselves. The necessity and commitment to excellence and achievement with its students, HBCUs have produced a wealth of graduates that have excelled in many different areas of education, business, athletics and medicine to name a few. ESHE Magazine wants to recognize four highly successful individuals that have graduated from Historically Black Colleges across the country.
Major: Business Management
Bio: 20+ years in the Amateur and Professional Basketball Industry, Travis King has negotiated over $500 million in contracts with the NBA, FIBA, and Shoe Companies. Formerly as AAU’s National Boys’ Basketball Manager, Travis garnered key relationships on the grassroots level with Division 1 Coaches, major brands and shoe companies, as well as with NBA personnel and scouts.
As a certified NBPA player agent, Mr. King is the Basketball Divisions lead recruiter and point person for the Rookie Pre-Draft program.
Travis was a 3-year letterman for the Southern University Men’s basketball team in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Quote That Travis Lives By:
“The more you learn, the more you earn!” – A.D. Middlebrook (my grandfather)
Major: Educational Administration with a concentration in Curriculum and Instruction
Dr. Thomas Williams grew up in Memphis Tennessee. From an early age he knew that he wanted to be an educator. After graduating high school he moved to Jackson Mississippi to pursue a degree in early childhood education. After obtaining his bachelor’s degree he began teaching with an urban school district in Mississippi. After teaching several years Dr. Williams realized that he wanted to explore opportunities in early childhood leadership and policy. This passion led him to obtain his Educational Specialist in psychometrics as well as his Master’s degree and Ph.D in educational administration from Jackson State University. Thomas Williams, PhD was also selected to participate with Harvard University Graduate School of Education Management and Leadership certificate program. Dr. Williams currently works in Washington DC as an early childhood leader. In his spare time, he enjoys reading and listening to music.
Quote That Thomas Lives By:
“The biggest risk is not taking any risk…. In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.” —Mark Zuckerberg
Major: History & English, Public Management, Political Science
Bio: Sherice Janaye Nelson is a graduate of the illustrious Howard University. Here she received her Doctorate of Philosophy in Political Science specializing in International Relations, Black Politics, and American Government. She is a Hillary Clinton scholar as her dissertation discussed the leadership styles of Clinton and Dr. Madeleine Albright respectively. Her work has been published in the Journal of International Relations and Affairs Group, and she is currently working on research that shows how to properly support Historical Black Colleges and Universities. Dr. Nelson currently operates her own consulting firm Dr. Janaye Executes, which specializes in idea development, strategic planning, and project execution. She is a professor and most recently taught at St. Mary’s College and Las Positas College. She earned her Masters of Public Administration at the University of the District of Columbia and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a dual degree in History and English from Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
Quote That Sherice Lives By: But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33 KJV
Social Media Information: Twitter: @DrJanaye
Major: Associates – Communications/ B.A. Mass Media Arts (TV Broadcasting)/Masters– Educational Technology
Bio: Currently the head women’s basketball coach at the University of La Verne, NCAA III.
Jason was most recently the coach at the University of Antelope Valley. While at UAV, Pruitt led the Pioneers to a 2016-2017 California Pacific Conference Championship, in the team’s inaugural season. Pruitt also led the Pioneers to a win over Pepperdine University at Firestone Fieldhouse. The Pioneers finished the 2016-2017 season with a 19-7 record (11-3 in the CalPac Conference) with one All-American, two First Team All-Conference players, one Second Team All-Conference player, one Honorable Mention player, and the Defensive Player of the Year. Coach Pruitt was also fortunate to be honored as the CalPac Conference’s Coach of the Year.
Prior to Antelope Valley, Pruitt spent three seasons as head coach of the Bethesda University Flames – out of the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) – where he guided them to a record-breaking run during his tenure and a No. 8 ranking in the final NCCAA standings for the 2015-16 season.
While at Bethesda, Pruitt guided the Flames to consecutive NCCAA National Tournament appearances and was twice named NCCAA Western Region Coach of the Year. Pruitt’s players also excelled in the classroom, with five members earning NCCAA Scholar-Athlete accolades.
Prior to joining Bethesda, the Leighton, Ala., native was an assistant men’s basketball coach at NCAA Division III California Institute of Technology, where he helped recruit and secure one of the best recruiting classes in Caltech’s history. Before moving to Southern California, Pruitt was a coach at the University School of Nova Southeastern University where he and his team finished the 2011-2012 season as Class 4A District Champions with the best record in school history (25-4) and ranked No. 1 in the state of Florida for eight-consecutive weeks.
Pruitt is a decorated athlete from Northwest Alabama where he was a standout basketball player and track star at Colbert County High School in Leighton. After high school, Pruitt played junior college basketball at nationally-ranked John C. Calhoun Community College. During his sophomore campaign, the Warhawks were the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Alabama State Champs and went on to play in the in the NJCAA National Championship game. He later signed with Division I Mississippi Valley State University where he played one season before ending his collegiate basketball career at Kentucky State University.
Coach Pruitt holds an Associate’s degree from John C. Calhoun, a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Media Arts from Clark Atlanta University and a Master’s in Educational Technology from Nova Southeastern.
Before Pruitt professionally returned to the hardwood as a coach, he spent nearly a decade working in the media industry where he served as a manager, producer, editor and videographer at various CBS, NBC, and ABC television affiliates. Coach Pruitt has applied this experience in the classroom by teaching diverse courses on digital journalism, media technology, communication, and sports marketing at local high schools and colleges.
Quote That Jason Lives By:
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” ― Rob Siltanen
By David Jordan Jr
Today’s society is full of imagery that reinforces negative stereotypes and perpetuates false realities. One avenue which has been consistently used is the realm of television and film. Film director/producer Mary Moutry of Ca$h Out Production has flipped the script with her new film “Cash Out: Cost Of Beauty.” The film shows how important it is to love one’s self while also showing the negative consequences which can come about when there is a lack of self-worth. Moutry recently spoke with ESHE about the film, it’s message and her objective as a film producer.
ESHE Magazine: What inspired you to create this film?
Mary Moutry: Since this was my first time ever screenwriting I needed to tell a story I knew without having to use my imagination. I wanted to tell a cautionary tale as well as inspire others to love their natural self as I too was embarking on a new journey of self-love and realizing self-hatred that I was totally unaware of. I guess you can say I was going through an awakening.
ESHE Magazine: As a producer, what do you feel is your most important obligation to people that view your films?
Mary Moutry: I think more importantly than a producer as a filmmaker it is most important to make your viewer feel, doesn’t matter the feeling but that they feel and they feel deeply. I make the type of films that leave with you and linger in your mind.
ESHE Magazine: Self-love. “CashOut” depicts and reinforces the importance of self-love and how a lack of self-love can destroy a person both literally and figuratively. Today’s society creates so much imagery for people to hopelessly and pointlessly aim for; in what ways does your film reinforce the importance of self-love?
ESHE Magazine: In your eyes, what is the deepest scene in the film?
Mary Moutry: The tap dance scene, in my opinion, is the deepest scene this scene was inspired by two things. One how I feel as a black woman in a metamorphic form. I feel like this is what black men want from us the fair skin, light eyes, European hair with the black woman’s physic.I feel like we are tap dancing to be noticed. I was also inspired by a famous grace jones photo shoot where her face was made up to look white but yet the rest of her was black.
ESHE Magazine: One adjective to describe this film.
Mary Moutry: Powerful.
By David Jordan Jr
The power of music is evident in its innate ability to capture life in all of its simplicities and complexities. Different genres of music echo different walks of life. The foundation which allows music to be born is what distinguishes the sound in a world full of unique noise. Blues music, a staple of not only the south but a world staple has forever had the ability to not only tell a story but to make you feel like you are a part of the story. The humble beginnings of blues music have enabled the genre to become a favorite form of music to listeners worldwide. Simple instruments played with such precision and uniqueness create a melody which is visually painted by heartfelt words from the artist(s) which is singing them. Whether it’s on your radio, record player (yes people still listen to records) or at The International Blues Competition “The Blues” always has and always will be the blues. Filmmaker Daniel Cross used his personal love of blues music to create a compelling narrative that focused not only on the music but also on some of the creators of thousands of blues songs which have not gotten the notoriety which they all deserve. ” I Am The Blues” is an EyeSteelFilm Production which takes the viewer to the purity of “Down Home Blues.” The footage for the documentary film was shot in the heart of the Mississippi Delta and the Louisiana Bayou, giving the film an immediate hooking authenticity. Watching the film you hear not only the music but the stories of the struggle to make the music happen from the artists that were a part of its inception. Bobby Rush, Barbara Lynn, Henry Gray, Carol Fran, Little Freddie King, Lazy Lester, Bilbo Walker, Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, RL Boyce, LC Ulmer, Bud Spries and Lil’ Buck Sinegal all share their lives and music in its most intimate states. The artists in the film take you to a place where racism and segregation only allowed their music to be heard while their faces were not shown and the film brings you to the current state where the music is appreciated by people all over the world. ESHE Magazine recently spoke with Daniel Cross about “I Am The Blues” and discussed how he became interested in blues, how the film immortalized blues legends and the filming process.
LISTEN TO THE AUDIO INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR DANIEL CROSS HERE:
Jonathan is an actor, model, rapper, writer, film producer and music producer. Since beginning his career as an actor, Jonathan has made a significant mark with his talents as both a writer and an actor. He has produced two short films, “The Walk Home” and its sequel “The Walk Home 2” and just recently filmed the pilot “Almost Nowhere.” This year Jonathan has also appeared in national television, print and internet commercials for Toyota.
Life provides the stage. The world provides the inspiration. Time provides the melody. Instruments provides the words. Terrell Sass creates the vision and immortalizes the sound.
Official Website: TerrellSass.com
Terrell Sass | Producer/Musician Portfolio
By David Jordan Jr
Spike Lee’s trailer for his debut feature film She’s Gotta Have It.”