Founder & President Black Health Matters
Roslyn Young-Daniels is president and founder of Black Health Matters, the leading health promotion and disease management online platform serving the needs of consumers, patients and physicians. She is a tireless advocate for eliminating health disparities by improving the health literacy of African American consumers and patients. A former senior executive in broadcast and publishing, Daniels is a nationally respected health strategist with more than 20 years designing and implementing cross-cultural health education programs and initiatives.
Daniels is disrupting the educational space for African American patients. In 2018, she launched the Black Health Matters Summit, which is a multi-platform initiative that features live Ted Talk-inspired presentations, by leading clinicians and health advocates.
African Americans are experiencing some of the greatest healthcare challenges of our time. Since our launch in 2012, we have worked to educate and uplift the African American community with health and wellness information that empowers. We have also created a call to action in which #BlackHealthMatters has been proclaimed more than 100,000+ times, on Instagram alone.
The Black Health Matters Virtual Summit was created for African American families committed to living their healthiest life by educating themselves. With knowledge comes understanding and with understanding, action! We always persevere, whatever the obstacles. This is the time to reaffirm that our health matters.
Join us, ask questions, share your concerns with others who care about what is important to you, and your health, at the largest, most important wellness forums created for African Americans. You’ll meet physicians, scientists and those who advocate for equity in all areas of health. Your attendance, along with our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers and friends will demonstrate that our time is now, because #BlackHealthMatters!
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Dr. Brown is a board-certified gynecologic oncologist who, for more than 15 years, has used her skills as a surgeon to provide high-quality and compassionate care to women with ovarian, uterine, cervical, and vulvar cancer at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
Gilead Sciences, Inc.
Gina M. Brown, M.D. joined the Medical Staff Affairs team at Gilead Sciences as a Principal Medical Scientist for the New York region. She provides HIV Prevention education and helps to develop prevention programs and investigator sponsored research.
Dr. Brown is an Obstetrician and Gynecologist with extensive experience in HIV clinical care and research. Before coming to Gilead, Dr. Brown was a Medical Officer in the NIH Office of AIDS Research (OAR) where she coordinated HIV research for non-vaccine biomedical prevention including PrEP, microbicides, and multipurpose prevention technologies; women’s and girl’s issues and comorbidities. Dr. Brown also provided expert consultation to the New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute HIV Guidelines Program.
Before joining the Office of AIDS Research, she was a member of the NIH Office of AIDS Research Advisory Council (OARAC) from 2000-2004 and chaired the Advisory Council in 2004. Dr. Brown also chaired the OAR women and girls and microbicides research working groups.
Dr. Brown served as the maternal-fetal specialist at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and was an Assistant Professor of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology in the department of Maternal-Fetal Medicine at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University. While at Columbia, she also was the Women’s Health Director of the Women and Children Care Center at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, a clinic that provides comprehensive care for HIV positive women and their families. At the Center, she was a co-investigator for the Women and Infant’s Transmission Study (WITS) and the Pediatric AIDS Clinical Trials Group (PACTG). Dr. Brown is a graduate of Harvard University and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. She received her Ob/Gyn training at Harlem Hospital Center and completed fellowships in Maternal-Fetal Medicine and Surgical-Anesthesia Critical Care at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University.
New Impression Social Services Agency
Jurline K. Redeaux holds a Masters in Social Work Degree from the University of Southern California. Upon retiring from Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services in 2008, as a Supervising Children’s Social Worker, she founded New Impression a 501(c) 3 nonprofit agency with two other social workers. New Impression advocates for the elimination of stigma associated with mental health, provides cancer supportive services, and aims to eliminate health care disparities.
She is a seasoned child welfare advocate with over 20 years of experience who has worked tirelessly throughout her career on the behalf of underrepresented populations, mainly women and children. She is so passionate about working with foster youth and their families, that in 2013, she came out of retirement to work part time for Los Angeles County DCFS to help reconnect foster youth with their families.
In 2017 she was diagnosed with endometrial cancer. She is into her second year of survivorship. In March 2018, she was selected by ECANA (Endometrial Cancer Action Network for African Americans) founded by Dr. Kemi Doll, to join their organization as a Community Empowerment Partner. She was trained at their first ECANA Conference in Hawaii and now is a certified Community Empowerment Partner. In this role, Jurline is educating and giving her personal testimony to the African American Community about facts associated with endometrial/uterine cancer.
Recently, Ms./ Redeaux has been selected to serve as Volunteer Advisory Member Chair for MHRCET.( Mental Health and Recovery Counseling Education and Training.) In this role, Ms. Redeaux will combine her over 10 years of experience as Mental Health Wellness , Advocate, and Educational Coordinator.
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Queens Hospital Center
Linda Bulone, RN, OCN, CCRC is the Research Nurse Manager at Queens Hospital Center for where she has developed a program to provide minority cancer patients access to cancer clinical trials in the challenging setting of a public hospital.
Linda Bulone, RN, OCN, CCRC is the Research Nurse Manager at Queens Hospital Center for where she has developed a program to provide minority cancer patients access to cancer clinical trials in the challenging setting of a public hospital. Prior to this position, Linda was a Research Nurse and Nurse Coordinator for patients with rare, genetically-inherited inborn errors of metabolism at North Shore University Hospital and Columbia University in NY. With the development of new clinical trials available to the Sickle Cell population, Linda has become very interested in expanding her work at Queens Hospital Center to this community and has been studying the programmatic goals of the existing Sickle Cell Center as well as new clinical trials opportunities for patients. Linda is very passionate about advocating for the Sickle Cell Community and is active in the legislative efforts to expand funds and programs in New York for this population.
Vice President, Product Access, Global Health and Patient Access, Pfizer
Niesha Foster, MBA, is Vice President, Product Access within the Global Health & Patient Access, formerly known as Corporate Responsibility. In this role she is responsible for US Patient Assistance Programs, administered through RxPathways, signature international product donation programs, such at the International Trachoma Initiative, and co-leading Pfizer’s Multicultural Center of Excellence.
During her 16+ year Pfizer career, Niesha has developed end to end pharmaceutical experience. She was the finance lead for Pfizer’s HIV franchise and COPD program, responsible for developing the short and long-range forecasts for the brands. Niesha obtained compliance experience while creating and implementing Pfizer’s policies for interactions with healthcare professionals, the success of which aided in the removal of the company’s 2015 Corporate Integrity Agreement. Niesha is an operations expert having served as Chief of Staff to the Senior Vice President of Policy, as well as in the office of President of Worldwide Research & Development. In addition, she was Corporate Affairs Lead focused on shaping the operating environment for the Rare Disease and Inflammation & Immunology business groups.
Her 7-year professional experience prior to Pfizer, includes forecasting the National Football League’s (NFL) Annual Salary Cap and partnering with the NFL Players Association to ensure teams’ compliance with key elements of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. She was also an auditor at Pricewaterhouse responsible for financial statement accuracy for clients ranging from The Girl Scouts USA to Viacom.
Niesha holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Syracuse University and an MBA from the University of Virginia, Darden School of Business.
Icann School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Dr. Campbell is an Associate Professor in the Division of Nephrology and the Vice Chair of Diversity and Inclusion. He is also the Director of the Nephrology Fellowship Program and an Ombudsperson for medical students at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. He is board certified in Nephrology.
Founder, Silence The Shame
Shanti is an accomplished entertainment industry veteran, speaker, author, and philanthropist who founded her own nonprofit foundation, Silence the Shame, Inc., to advocate for mental health.
Shanti Das is an accomplished entertainment industry veteran, speaker, author, and Philanthropist.
Shanti worked in the entertainment business for over 25 years. Her music industry career (from intern to Executive Vice President) included positions at Capitol Records, LaFace Records, Columbia Records, Sony Urban Music and Universal Motown where she worked directly with some of music’s top talent like OutKast, Usher, Prince, TLC, Toni Braxton, Erykah Badu, and more.
As a result of Shanti’s extensive community work in the 2000 decade, she decided to establish her very own nonprofit, The Hip-Hop Professional Foundation, Inc. The foundation was rebranded under the name Silence the Shame, Inc., the mental health movement that lead the way since 2016.
Shanti has suffered from depression/anxiety over the years and has also experienced love ones affected with mental health disorders.
Silence the Shame, Inc has received global awareness and has become a commonly used hashtag to normalize the conversation in America. Shanti’s foundation curates community conversations, creates content and broadens awareness & education around mental health and wellness.
She recently self-published her book, Silencing MY Shame. Shanti shares her journey with her own emotional health and wellness of how she turned her pain and struggles into passion to start a global movement! In 2019, Shanti was named a Top Changemaker in the World(#7 out of 100) by a UK publication called The Big Issue!
In addition to running her nonprofit, Shanti speaks at companies (Warner Chappell Publishing, National Geographic, SB Projects, Translation, NBA, Warner Media, Warner Music Group and more) and universities sharing her inspiring message of mental health awareness.
Founder, Can't Be Silenced
Music industry insider Maria A. Davis was diagnosed with HIV in 1995 after unknowingly contracting the virus from the man whom she was planning to marry. Since her diagnosis, Maria has been very vocal about living with HIV/Aids and in 2006 founded Can’t Be Silenced, Inc., a non-profit created to raise funds, provide services and lend a voice to those impacted by the epidemic. She has dedicated her life to educating women, men and children about HIV/Aids, across the country and specifically in the New York City area where she was raised and resides.
Currently a spokesperson and community coordinator for the National Black Leadership Commission on Health (NBLCH), Maria also serves on NYC Mayor Bill DeBlasio’s community advisory board on HIV/Aids. In 2018, she was hired by IRIS House, a community-based organization that provides services, including health and wellness, peer mentoring, food and housing to living with HIV/Aids. She has previously been a spokesperson for Bristol-Myers Squibb (PREVAIL) and Merck’s I Design, a national campaign for HIV/Aids education.
Known as one of NYC’s hottest party promoters, Maria has leveraged entertainment industry experience to educate the community by partnering with organizations such as Life Beat: Music Industry Fights HIV. She has appeared on numerous urban radio and television networks to get the message out to young people, including VH1’s Black Ink Crew reality series, MTV, WBLS-FM, WKRS-FM, WLIB-FM, WABC-TV, UPN 9 News, NY1 and Sirius XM.
Committed to giving back, Maria regularly volunteers her time in the community, speaking to educators, health care providers, college students and community members. She also works closely with Ryan Healthcare to provide free HIV/Aids testing throughout the New York City area.
Maria does not consider herself a victim, but an activist who speaks to thousands of people every year about HIV/AIDS awareness. She puts her convictions and her passion for life into action. She has participated in the rigorous 250 mile Boston to New York AIDS bicycle ride; raising tens of thousands of dollars for AIDS research. Maria also raises funds for the Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC) and FACES NY, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides services and housing for those affected by and infected with HIV/Aids.
AIDS research by participating in the GMHC’s AIDS Walk New York. She produced, directed and promoted her newly created, legendary music showcases known as “Mad Wednesday’s”; which provides venues for signed and unsigned R&B and hip-hop artists and comedians who have had no other performance options. Through her work, Maria has bridged the gap between HIV & Music and aspires to continue to do much more in the upcoming years.
The White Dress Project
Amber is a member of the board of directors for The White Dress Project. She started volunteering with The White Dress Project after having surgery to remove fibroids and treat endometriosis. She serves her community through nonprofit work and has a passion for women’s health and advocacy.
Amber English Coleman is a member of the board of directors for The White Dress Project. Amber started volunteering with The White Dress Project in 2017, shortly after having surgery to remove fibroids and treat endometriosis. During her time with the patient advocacy organization, Amber has participated in outreach events to build awareness of uterine fibroids, advocacy to engage elected officials, and program planning for the organization’s annual signature event, A Night in White.
Amber has a passion for women’s health and advocacy. She began her career in legislative affairs and organizing for Planned Parenthood Southeast in Atlanta, GA. Later, she worked for the YWCA of the National Capital Area in Washington, DC.
Amber currently serves as the Communications and Outreach Manager for Civil Rights Corps, a nonprofit organization working to end the criminalization of poverty through high-impact litigation and advocacy.
Amber was a member of The Campaign School at Yale University’s 2013 class. She is a proud graduate of Howard University with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism. She earned her Master’s degree in Public Policy from Georgia State University.
Associate Professor, Icahn School of Medicine & Director, Healthy Heart Series
Icilma V. Fergus, MD is Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Cardiovascular Disparities at Mount Sinai Medical Center.
Icilma V. Fergus, MD is Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Cardiovascular Disparities at Mount Sinai Medical Center. Prior to that she served as Chief of the Division of Cardiology at Harlem Hospital Center for three years. Her undergraduate and graduate education were at Barnard College, Columbia University and SUNY Downstate. She completed her residency and Chief residency at Albert Einstein Medical Center. Dr. Fergus completed her cardiology fellowship at Weill Cornell Medical Center. She is board certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiology.
Dr. Fergus has authored numerous articles related to heart disease in peer-reviewed journals including a Diabetes Education Booklet and a chapter in the book entitled “Cardiovascular Disease in Ethnic Minorities”. She is currently working on several written works “ Happy Hearts Cookbook – with a Tropical Twist”, “Delite in Your Heart” and “The ABCs of Community Interventions”. Her current clinical and research interests involve cardiovascular disparities, Hypertension, Heart Failure and heart disease in women. She has been an investigator in several clinical trials.
Dr. Fergus is an active member of several professional organizations, including the American Heart Association where she sits on the Founder’s Affiliate board and is president of the Westchester Chapter, the American College of Cardiology and the Association of Black Cardiologists where she is the immediate past president. She also served a number of years on the ABC board including two years as secretary and Chair of Community Programs for six years. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha incorporated, and co chairs the Health Promotions Committee and sits on the board of the Jack and Jill of America Foundation as Vice President. She is a prominent educator in the local community where she works including board member of the Community Advisory board of Touro College.
Dr. Fergus is the founder and director of the series of Healthy Hearts projects – “Harlem Healthy Hearts (HHH), Montserrat Healthy Hearts (MHH) and Programme Ultima Femme ( PUF). These programs focus on addressing lifestyle motivation for cardiac prevention as well as education, demonstration and screening to promote optimal health management of cardiovascular risk factors and chronic conditions that may lead to heart disease. She has embarked on several medical mission visits to the island of Montserrat beginning in 2011 and continues to do so with a growing team every year. The Diabetes Booklet was inspired by her last trip there. Dr. Fergus continues to be very active in communities where health care disparities are present.
Dr Fergus is also Mrs. Rowe, wife to Robert Rowe and mother to three lovely children Orion, Arianne and RJ. She has been featured in several magazines newspapers and shows including Girl Friends Magazine, Heart and Soul, New York Daily News and “Being Black in America: CNN series Part 1”. Her non-medical book is entitled “B.A.D. Moms”. She is the recipient of Luminary Award from the American Heart Association 2016, the Cocovia Award from Women’s Day Magazine at the Red Dress Awards 2018, as well as the recipient of numerous other awards and accolades. You may find her on twitter @icilmafergusrow, Linkedin, instagram or Facebook and visit the website www.healthyheartseries.org
National Black Leadership Commission on Health, Inc.
A civil rights activist, leader, educator and philanthropist, Ms. Fields serves as a featured speaker on leadership issues, civil rights, health, government and politics at numerous governmental, organizations, and private industry events.
C. Virginia Fields is the President and CEO of the National Black Leadership Commission on Health Inc., (NBLCH), formerly known as the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS. Under Ms. Fields’ leadership, the organization has grown to include affiliate chapters in 12 cities nationwide and established partnerships with over 140 organizations. Her expertise in government and politics has led to the successful implementation of noteworthy public policy achievements in health promotion and disease prevention, including HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care.
In 2008, Ms. Fields was appointed to the New York State AIDS Advisory Council by Governor David A. Paterson. She was appointed to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Regional Health Equity Council for Region II, one of ten such advisory councils established to address racial and ethnic health disparities. In 2016, Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed Ms. Fields to the ENDING THE AIDS EPIDEMIC Task Force that is charged with significantly reducing new infections in New York State by 2020. In 2018, Ms. Fields was appointed by Governor Cuomo to serve on a special Task Force to help eradicate Hepatitis C in the State of New York.
Ms. Fields is the former President of the Borough of Manhattan, chief executive of 1.5 million residents, to which she was elected in 1997 and reelected in 2001. She served as a member of the New York City Council from 1989-1997. Prior to elected office, Ms. Fields established a distinguished career in her professional field of social work, where she served in various positions as a Social Service Administrator for the New York City Work Release Program; Director of Foster Care/Adoption at The Children’s Aid Society; and Consultant to the National Board of the YWCA. Ms. Fields served as an Adjunct Lecturer at New York University’s Silver School of Social Work and Columbia University Graduate School of Social Work.
A civil rights activist, leader, educator and philanthropist, Ms. Fields serves as a featured speaker on leadership issues, civil rights, health, government and politics at numerous governmental, organizations, and private industry events. In 2004, she addressed the International Business Conference in Beijing, China; and was a speaker at the National Democratic Convention in Boston.
Birmingham, Alabama, Ms. Fields received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Knoxville College in Tennessee and a master’s degree in Social Work from Indiana University. She is a member of the historic Abyssinian Baptist Church, New York City, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and The Links, Inc., among other civic and national organizations.
A recipient of numerous awards, citations and honors of distinction for her leadership on health, education, civil rights and social justice issues, Ms. Fields resides in New York City.
D. Fraser Associates, LLC Founder, Black Leadership Commission on AIDS
Ms. Fraser-Howze has been widely recognized for more than four decades of global leadership to communities of color regarding teenage pregnancy, social welfare, and HIV and AIDS. She is the founder and former CEO/President of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS.
Debra Fraser-Howze is the Principal of D. Fraser Associates, LLC, a high-level private consulting firm advising corporate clients seeking to develop business in new markets, that benefit the public health of communities. Debra is the recently retired Senior Vice President of Government and External Affairs at OraSure Technologies, Inc., a leader in the development, manufacture and distribution of oral fluid diagnostic and collection devices designed to detect or diagnose critical medical conditions. Ms. Fraser-Howze joined OraSure Technologies in January 2008.
In her role, Ms. Fraser-Howze was charged with developing business opportunities in new markets for the company. She worked with governments worldwide to create public private partnerships, developed pipeline funding to address emerging life-threatening diseases and with lawmakers to ensure resources were available to communities in need of testing and treatment. She also developed external opportunities, leading cross functional business teams across industries with clients, stakeholders and business partners.
Ms. Fraser-Howze played a critical role in the company’s growth and in launching the Company’s OraQuick In-Home HIV Test (2012) and the OraQuick Rapid HCV Test (2010). Both innovations are the first and only such tests to be approved by U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Ms. Fraser-Howze has also been instrumental in securing $30 million in government funding for the clinical development of the Company’s OraQuick Rapid Ebola Test (2015) and the OraQuick Rapid Zika Test (2016) – the former of which is currently being deployed in West Africa under FDA Emergency Use Authorization. The rapid Ebola test was taken from concept to market in eight months, resulting from her work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA).
Prior to joining OraSure Technologies, Ms. Fraser-Howze served as the President/CEO of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS (NBLCA), an organization she founded in 1987. During her 21- year tenure, Ms. Fraser Howze advised two U.S. Presidents appointed to both the Bush and Clinton Presidential Advisory Councils on HIV/AIDS from 1995-2001. NBLCA conducts policy, research and advocacy on HIV and is now the largest Black HIV and AIDS non-profit organization of its kind in America.
Ms. Fraser-Howze has been widely recognized for more than four decades of global leadership to communities of color regarding teenage pregnancy, social welfare, and HIV and AIDS. Ms. Howze was a principal in authoring many legislative initiatives including the National Minority AIDS Initiative, The New York State Aide to Localities and the New York City HIV/AIDS Clergy Bill.
Ms. Fraser-Howze Chaired the ACTG Community Constituency Group/ Public Education Technology Transfer Committee under NIH. In 2003, Ms. Fraser-Howze was appointed to the New York City Commission on AIDS and was Vice chair of the NY HIV planning council. in 2007 she was appointed to the New York State Governors Health Advisory Council. She is the recipient of the National Medical Association’s (NMA) highest honor – the Scroll of Merit and in 2010 she was inducted into the Hunter College Hall of Fame for distinguished achievement. Ms. Fraser-Howze is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Hunter College School of Public Health, New York City AIDS Memorial, AIDS United and Iris House. Ms. Fraser-Howze holds a B.A. in Interpersonal Communications from Hunter College a Master’s in Public Administration from Baruch College, and is currently pursuing a master’s in theological studies from Moravian Theological Seminary.
NYC Health + Hospitals Lincoln Hospital
A perinatal consultant and women’s health expert, Dr. Gaither’s expertise is grounded in both research and her professional experience in caring for women with multiple medical, surgical, and/or fetal conditions during pregnancy.
Dr Gaither is a double board certified physician in Ob/Gyn and Maternal Fetal Medicine , and holds a Masters Degree in Public Health. A perinatal consultant and womens’ health expert, Gaither’s expertise is grounded in both research and her professional experience in caring for women with multiple medical/surgical/fetal conditions in pregnancy. In her current role, Dr Gaither serves as the Director of Perinatal Services/Director of Maternal-Fetal Medicine for NYC Health+ Hospitals/Lincoln in the Bronx.
A Harlem native, Gaither’s mission as a medical professional is to offer exemplary prenatal care to all women, regardless of circumstance. Dr Gaither regularly lends her commentary and expertise on issues pertaining to womens’ health, pregnancy, and environmental/ population health policy, to leading national consumer health and lifestyle outlets across print, radio, TV, film and on-line, including Medscape, Prevention Magazine, Parents Magazine, Womens Health Magazine, Doctor Radio, NBC TV, NY 1, and Fit Pregnancy . With her foray into social media, Dr Gaithers’ combined perspective as a maternal child specialist and public health proponent has allowed her to reach millions via her Twitter feed– @KeciaGaitherMD and her website: www.keciagaither.com. Dr Gaither has co-authored “The Confident Woman”, a must read book for women who desire increased confidence, self-esteem and empowerment.
She is a reviewer for, and has been published by, multiple scientific journals. She additionally serves as a reviewer for WebMD, and as a requested contributor to The Huffington Post, Thrive Global, and US News and World Report. Dr Gaither was an appointee of NYC Mayor Bloomberg to the HIV Planning Council of NY. Dr Gaither is on the medical advisory board of NATERA, PWN Health, and serves as a medical expert for The Baby Box Company. Dr Gaither was recently named as a liaison to The Association of Black Cardiologists, addressing cardiac disease in pregnancy.
Dr Gaither received her BA in Biology from Barnard College, and her MD from SUNY Health Science Center in Syracuse. She completed her Ob/Gyn residency at Riverside Regional Medical Center, a subsidiary of The Medical College of Virginia and completed her Maternal Fetal Medicine Fellowship at The University of Medicine and Dentistry-Rutgers in Newark NJ. Dr Gaither earned her MPH in Health Policy and Management from Columbia University.
When not caring for her patients or conducting research, Dr Gaither enjoys time spent with her family and traveling
Author & Sirius XM Host "Ask The Good Doctor"
Dr. LaJoyce Brookshire is a six-time bestselling author and a New York Times bestselling author of the novel based on the smash hit movie Soul Food with seven concurrent bestselling books, Faith Under Fire: Betrayed by a Thing Called Love, Web of Deception, The Last Listening Party of the Notorious B.I.G. and Ask The Good Doctor Detox Edition Remixed and the newly released cookbook Kitchen Warriors 101: Homemade Healthy. With Soul Food, Dr. LaJoyce is the First African American woman to novelize a major motion picture.
Dr. LaJoyce transitioned the Faith Under Fire memoir about her husband who married her knowing he had AIDS which sold over 250 thousand copies into an Off-Broadway smash hit stage play with Co-Writer Blake Roberts and have written the script for the feature film. She has become an HIV/AIDS educator and is an advocate for Abstinence and Health Literacy.
In her former career, Dr. LaJoyce was a high-powered entertainment publicist to the STARS. As Director of Publicity at Arista Records in the mid-90s, she represented music legends, multi-platinum and Diamond Certified artists such as The Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin, Sean "Puffy" Combs, Toni Braxton, Kenny G, OutKast, Monica, Deborah Cox, Craig Mack, Total, Faith Evans, 112, Usher, TLC, Whitney Houston, and The Notorious B.I.G aka (Biggie Smalls) until his death.
Due to her efforts as Director of Publicity her artists sold over 100 million albums worldwide, such as The Preachers Wife soundtrack, one of the best-selling gospel albums of all time selling an estimated six million copies; The Waiting to Exhale soundtrack selling over 12 million copies and winning a Grammy for best R&B song; TLC's Crazy, Sexy, Cool certified Diamond album sold over 23 million copies and spent over two years on the Billboard album charts making TLC the first and only girl group in history to be awarded Diamond status. LaJoyce also worked on both Toni Braxton's certified Double Platinum album Secret selling over 15 million copies; and The Notorious B.I.G's Ready To Die was certified four times Platinum and his last album Life after Death was Certified Diamond selling over 10 million copies and making it one of the best-selling Rap albums of all time; and Kenny G. earned the status as best-selling Instrumental Artist of all times selling over 75 million records.
LaJoyce has worked with bona-fide R&B and Hip-Hop Royalty which firmly plants her on the throne amongst the Stars behind the Stars.
New Jersey Urology
Dr. George Johnson has more than 30 years experience in the field of urology. He is certified by the American Board of Urology and is an active member of the American Urology Association.
Memorial Sloan Kettering Ralph Lauren Center
Lewis J. Kampel MD received his undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey and his medical degree from the Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C. After post-graduate training in Internal Medicine at Cornell Cooperating Hospitals (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the NYU Medical Center\ Manhattan Veterans Hospital), he served two years as a Major in the U.S. Army Medical Corps stationed at Headquarters Allied Forces Central Europe in the Netherlands. After military service he completed a Fellowship in Medical Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York and was certified in both Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology.
Between 1975 and 1993 he was in private practice in New Jersey where he also served as Chairman of Internal Medicine at JFK Medical Center in Edison and Chief of Hematology\Oncology at Rahway Hospital in Rahway for several years.
In 1993, Dr. Kampel returned to Memorial Sloan Kettering and concentrated on prostate cancer, a disease with a disparate impact on African American and Caribbean men. His interest in that problem led to a collaboration with representatives of the Government of Jamaica and the Jamaican community in New York seeking to develop programs that might identify the cause and encourage earlier diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer in this high-risk group of men.
Dr. Kampel was a leader the Quality Assurance program at Memorial Sloan Kettering, serving first as Chair of the Department of Medicine QA committee, and then as Chair of the Hospital QA Committee. In that capacity, he was responsible for the monitoring of the quality of care and for efforts to improve it.
Dr. Kampel joined the Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care and Prevention in February of 2017 as Director. He is very enthusiastic about the opportunity to better identify and meet the cancer care needs of this community.
Weill Cornell Medicine New York Presbyterian Hospital Network
Dr. Newman is a surgical oncologist and with a clinical and research practice dedicated to breast cancer management. She leads multidisciplinary breast oncology programs which provide the finest, most compassionate care to women and men affected by breast cancer.
The White Dress Project
Nkem Osian is a Public Health Analyst for the United States Department of Health and Human Services. In this role, Ms. Osian works to ensure that low-income, uninsured, and underinsured People with HIV/AIDS have access to optimal HIV treatment and care. Ms. Osian also serves as the Board Secretary for The White Dress Project (WDP), a national non-profit organization whose mission is to raise national awareness about the uterine fibroid epidemic. In her role as Board Secretary, Ms. Osian contributes to the formulation of practices and policies that help to advance the mission of The WDP through activities such as education, advocacy, and research. Ms. Osian struggles with fibroids and is passionate about telling her story in hopes that it helps to break down the walls of silence and empower other women to do the same.
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Dr. Paik is a medical oncologist specializing in the care of patients with lung cancer. His research interest lies in developing new therapies for patients with squamous cell carcinomas of the lung.
Fitness & Healthy Lifestyle Expert
Benita is a widely acclaimed health and wellness branding expert focusing on the fitness needs of women. Her company, Bennie Girl Health & Wellness Branding Events, works with businesses and organizations to communicate their mission while improving lives
Benita Harris Perkins – is a wellness branding expert focused on the fitness needs of women and the special demands they must overcome to step into a lifetime of healthy living through fun, interactive lifestyle events. Her company, Bennie Girl Healthy Lifestyle Branding Events, works with businesses and organizations to brand them as healthy lifestyle partners, by identifying opportune events and activities that will best define and communicate the organization’s mission, with the goal to eliminate health disparities. Her latest venture is Healthy Heritage Lifestyle Sisters’ Day of Wellness charged with providing healthy lifestyle information to women of color to reduce health disparities in the United States.
Benita has appeared at numerous events to promote her philosophy, including the National Medical Association, American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, National Urban League conferences, Essence Music Festival, Black Enterprise Magazine’s Women of Power Summit and other national and local conferences and events. She has been featured in national and local media including Essence Magazine, Ebony Magazine, Heart and Soul Magazine, Upscale Magazine, radio and television. She’s worked with Fortune 500 companies including Pepsico, McDonalds, CVS Caremark, Walgreens, Johnson and Johnson Company, Novartis Corporation and Pfizer Corporation, to provide fun interactive health and wellness events which audience feedback has confirmed as educational, fun and memorable. In addition Benita writes a “BennieGirl Health and Wellness Divas” blog targeted to women over 50, which provides a variety of healthy lifestyle tips and information.
She also produced, “Taking It To A Higher Ground”, a fun, entertaining exercise DVD available at Benniegirl.com. This upbeat step and upper body workout is set to motivating gospel music. “Be inspired by the message and motivated by the music!”. Benita is a member of the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA), the National Association of Sports Medicine (NASM). She holds a BA from Wellesley College, and an MBA from Stern School of Business, New York University.
New York State Sickle Cell Advocacy Network, Inc. & Sickle Cell Disease Association of America
Gloria M. Rochester, founder, president and CEO of The Queens Sickle Cell Advocate Network, Inc. (QSCAN), is also the mother of two boys and two girls. When her youngest daughter was diagnosed with Sickle Cell Anemia at the age of 18 months, she embarked on a determined mission and search to find out the disease. In her quest to find answers to the many questions, she began to collect information and identify the agencies which were supposed to manage the care of Sickle Cell.
Ms. Rochester realized that the disease was not high on the priority of either the medical institutions or the legislative authorities. She was so frustrated by her own struggles to obtain information and relief for her daughter that she became determined to try to change the culture surrounding the treatment and provisions of service. Passionately, from the basement of her home in 1978, she started a parent support group and in a short time this grew into an organization known as The Queens Sickle Cell Advisory Network.
Ms. Rochester faced many obstacles and a host of other complications. She made a commitment to be in the forefront of the drive to make a difference in bringing awareness, support, advocacy and empowerment to the families and individuals affected to enhance their quality of life.
So, In 1997, The Queens Sickle Cell Advocacy Network, Inc. was incorporated as a 501© 3 not for profit organization with the express purpose of raising awareness of the public at large, and more importantly, the legislatures in the community of the devastating impact of the disease.
As the numbers of people depending on her for support grew, Ms. Rochester chose to apply herself fulltime to broadening her mind and obtaining much knowledge, skills and resources from other agencies and organizations with a similar social welfare orientation.
Over the past twenty-eight years, Ms. Rochester has equipped herself with the necessary training and leadership skills to provide families and individuals with networking support and activities enabling them to make positive changes when they feel overwhelmed by the barriers and painful experiences they face.
To prepare herself for the challenge of her chosen mission, and to structure QSCAN into the type of organization required to provide families and individuals with access to federal, state, city and local resources that will enhance their quality of life,
Mrs. Rochester became involved in the activities of the New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council, and the New York State Department of Health Bureau of Child Adolescent Health.
She works with the New York State Parent and Partners in Health Organizations to empower families and care for children with special health care needs. She also attended training courses in Leadership, Public Speaking, Conflict Management and Coalition Building run by the Citizens Committee of New York Leadership Institute.
Through her tireless and almost single handed efforts, QSCAN has become a multi-purpose organization serving not only the Sickle Cell community, but also providing advocacy and other support for the unemployed and under privileged that knock on QSCAN’s doors.
The organization has come to be known nationally and internationally and has developed partnership and collaboration with health care professionals, government agencies, private institutions and community groups.
Despite all of her achievements, caring for her family, building a functioning organization, becoming a surrogate parent to so many individuals with Sickle Cell with whom she immediately bonds, or dealing with institutions and legislators in whose hands the fate of her clients rests, Mrs. Rochester has remained approachable, helpful and consistent.
Her organization is capable of much more than it has been able to achieve, but her fundraising efforts have not so far generated the kind of funding it now needs to go to the next level.
Hopefully, her constant appeals may soon bear fruit to allow changes in the structure of the organization, and to relieve some of the pressure under which she has been performing for the past decade.
To God be the glory!
Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons
Dr. Saith is currently a Fellow in Cardiac Amyloidosis at Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons, the first of its kind in the history of Columbia University. He is also a Clinical Assistant Professor at NYU School of Medicine, where he completed a residency in Internal Medicine and a Fellowship in Advanced Heart Failure.
Founder, Mental-Hop Adjunct Professor, Kean University
Dr. Randolph Sconiers is a New Jersey Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 15 years of experience working with at-risk youth. He was born in Jersey City, N.J. and moved to Piscataway, N.J. at the age of 13. Dr. Sconiers studied at Kean University where he graduated cum lade with a BA in Psychology. He continued his studies at Kean University, graduating with honors in the Masters of Social Work (MSW) program. In 2007 Dr. Randolph attained his Clinical License and is currently enrolled at Capella University’s Doctoral of Social Work program.
Dr. Randolph Sconiers developed his professional experience at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ (UMDNJ) where he worked as a Therapeutic Recreational Specialist and as a Mental Health Clinician. His experiences and professional skills have given him rewarding opportunities with the Middlesex County Youth Advocate Program (YAP), St. Peters Hospital (For KEEPS Program), and the Morris School District.
The love and passion for empowering at-risk youth became clear as he worked as a Mental Health Clinician within UMDNJ’s University Correctional Health Care program. Dr. Randolph was assigned to the Jamesburg Campus (NJ Correctional Facility for Boys). It was there he realized that more needed to be done to empower young men outside of the prison walls in order to decrease recidivism, empower young men to be successful in spite of their circumstances, and become leaders in their communities. Dr. Randolph Sconiers currently practices as a mental health therapist with the NJ Division of Behavioral Health (NJ DCBH) Intensive In-community program. He is also is a Certified School Social Worker employed in the Morris School District of New Jersey. Dr. Randolph ’s professional experiences in mental health, corrections, education, and community counseling have given him the tools to be a valuable asset for clients that need help overcoming issues, for caseworkers in need of consultation, and for program in need of support on strategies to help support clientele.
Dr. Randolph is the owner of New Steps Counseling, LLC which is based in South Plainfield, NJ. He has been recognized as one of the top Clinical Social Workers in South Plainfield, NJ by the International Association of Mental Health Professionals. His Twitter has been recognized as one of the top Twitter accounts Social Workers should follow by MSW onlineprograms.org. Dr. Randolph’s passion for empowering, servicing, and educating our youth is fulfilled through his professional experiences.
Dr. Randolph Sconiers is also a passionate speaker on issues impacting our youth. Some of the topics are listed below and he is available to speak at your school, community center, or church.
Lynn Shaw Group Mental Health First Aid USA
Lynette Shaw resides in Hawthorne, New Jersey. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology, is certified in Crisis Intervention and is a National trainer for the Mental Health First Aid USA. For the last 14 years she has served as Coordinator for the Passaic County Crisis Intervention Team. She has over 27 years of law enforcement experience as a Police Sergeant with the William Paterson University Police Department in Wayne, New Jersey.
She began her law enforcement career as a National Fugitive Investigator with International Fidelity Insurance Company. During this time, she was a successful Bounty Hunter, earning the title of America’s Top Bounty Hunter five consecutive years by the New York Post. She appeared on the Joan Rivers Show and Sonny Grasso’s Top Cop, nationally syndicated television programs.
In 1993 after 13 years of investigations, she began her law enforcement career with the William Paterson University Police Department. After graduating the NJ Basic Police Officer’s Course, Lynette was assigned to the Detective Bureau, and in 2000 she was asked to create a Community Policing Unit. In collaboration with outside police agencies, she was successful in creating a student-based patrol program as well as a Police Bicycle Squad. Her primary focus was on Community Engagement and providing student-oriented programming such as DWI simulations, Rape Aggression Defense Classes, Domestic Violence Seminars and various Safety Precaution Programs.
After ten years in Community Policing, Lynette was placed on “loan”, to the Office of Student Development to create a pilot program for veteran students returning from Afghanistan and Iraq. As the Director of Veteran and Military Affairs she collaborated with contracted architects to design, build and furnish a transition space according to the needs of returning veteran students. After securing the space, through VA grant funding, the office was awarded $150,000 annually for the hiring of veteran work-study students. Lynette also formulated a Veterans Recruitment Program for the Admission’s Office. She has explored and developed external resources in the areas of Mental Health, Housing, Career and Testing; as well as outlined a marketing plan for attracting veterans to William Paterson University.
Currently Lynette is spearheading an initiative called “Project Urban Restoration and Education”, it target’s the social ills of Gun Violence and the affect it has on mental health, specifically; the cycle of unaddressed traumatic experiences in families and communities as a whole. This unique partnership between Lynette and ex-con turned award winning broadcast journalist /filmmaker, has brought together a complete overall perspective in combatting gun violence and trauma. The curriculum is geared to educate teachers, administrators, law enforcement, faith-based organizations, as well as students. The program acts as a deterrent and also offers solutions through conflict resolution for those who might be actively involved in a cycle of violence.
Presently Lynette is filming and is featured in a documentary highlighting the vicarious trauma that first responders experience. The film will be distributed to police academies across the country.
Alumni Chapter Member, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Jamal Grooms is an Executive Territory Business Manager for a pharmaceutical company and is the winner of multiple national sales awards. Grooms is a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and served as the 33rd President of the Atlanta Alumni Chapter. A community first leader, Grooms is currently the Development Authority Director for the City of South Fulton, Georgia, a Vice President of the Atlanta Chapter of the National Pan Hellenic Council and a current Board of Trustees member of the National Association of Professional Pharmaceutical Representatives. He is a graduate of Dillard University and a devoted family man. He enjoys travel, music and comedy and resides in Atlanta, Georgia with wife Stacy and daughter JaKai.
Piedmont Physicians Fayetteville Gynecologic Oncology
Mitzie-Ann Davis, M.D. earned her undergraduate degree from Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania and her medical degree from the Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia and then went on to receive her Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University. Prior to joining Piedmont Physicians, Dr. Davis completed fellowship training in gynecologic oncology at the University of California San Diego. Dr. Davis is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and is a member of the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists, American Medical Association and the Sigma Xi Research Society. She is fluent in Spanish and in her spare time, enjoys cooking and traveling.
Black Health Matters
Colin P. Rock has over 30 years of advertising and sponsorship marketing experience. He’s established careers at major publishing companies such as The New York Times and National Geographic Traveler Magazine. In addition, he has worked diligently to assist in the growth of African American publications and media such as Ebony and Black Entertainment Television’s Emerge Magazine, where he demonstrated his grasp of the ethnic media segment.
Colin’s entrepreneurial passion for building ethnic institutions supports his goal of bringing art, culture, economic development, health, and stability to those ethnic communities. That passion is evident in his current tenure as Head of Partner Sponsorship Development for Black Health Matters.