This past weekend I had a blast, as I not only attended, but was honored by McDonald’s with some of the nation’s most dedicated celebrities and youth at the 365Black Awards held Friday at the Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans as part of the Essence Festival activities.
For the first time, I walked the red carpet with some of the best entertainers. I did not even mind the heat, boy was it hot, but when you are walking the red carpet with people like Rev. Al Sharpton, Chaka Khan and others, it was all worth it. I was honored to have my award presented by one of my mentors Rev. Al Sharpton and have my other mentor Tamika Mallory there supporting me.
Let me tell you I have a new perspective for McDonalds. The level that each McDonalds owner gives back to communities is outstanding. From college scholarships to sponsoring little league teams, McDonalds receives two thumbs up from me. I met some many owner operators that are committed to see change in their communities. What a welcome change from the take and never give back from most business in our communities.
The event was hosted by the charming and handsome Laz Alonso, 356Black honored greats like Tamia and Grant Hill, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Chaka Khan, and Tina and Harold Lewis, McDonald’s owners/operators.
The celebrity couple, Tamia and Grant, looked great together and understands how to use their blessings to bless others. They were recognized for their work in the community and service for youth and families through the Tamia and Grant Hill foundation.
Now, what was really awesome, was meeting Tony Hansberry.
He impacted the medical world at such a young. While still in high school at the age of 14, Hansberry, in two days, invented a surgical technique that reduces the risk of infection after a hysterectomy and it’s now used by surgeons nationwide. Tony attends a medical magnet school.
Harold and Tina Lewis opened their first McDonalds 25 years ago and has given so much to so many, like Susan G Komen and graduating seniors with their scholarship fund.
Did you know that Chaka is not just a Diva and great singer, but a community activist? Since 1999, her foundation has helped so many women and children
I want to say thank you again McDonalds for recognizing me and my efforts to stop youth violence.