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About the Production

The Women Who Rock Their Roles (WWRTR) is a one-hour special, being taped in New York - a production of a A Name to Know, hosted by Alicia Figueras Lambert. The special highlights and tells the stories of women who represent excellence in what they do in their roles as professionals. However, most importantly, it recognizes them for the work they do in their communities to give back ~ especially with efforts to improve the lives of other women and children.  

The Awardees

This initial group of awardees are being recognized for the work they do in the nonprofit sector, education, healthcare, fashion, beauty and the arts and how they have used their careers and talents to help others.

Sponsors

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Women Who Rock Their Roles

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The special will feature the Women Who Rock Their Roles, their stories, their work, their lives, their passions. You'll get a chance to see them at work and in the studio after a special makeover provided by Vera Moore Cosmetics. The New York Special will be a production of A Name to Know.

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A Name to Know is  a premier media platform showcasing celebrities, top corporate CEO's,   small business owners, not-for-profit organizations inventors,  and young entrepreneurs. The show's purpose is to highlight successful journeys  in an effort to be an inspiration for their viewers. 

Executive Producer & /Host - Alicia Figueras Lambert

Television producer, host, publisher, teacher, advocate - Alicia Figueras-Lambert has worn many hats and served in many roles.  Her self-described "eclectic" background has included being a retired veteran/drug interdiction agent, and running for New York State Governor (2010). 

 

One   of Alicia’s greatest passions is the welfare of children whose parents are incarcerated. While working at Rikers and Nassau County Maximum Security Jails as a teacher of cognitive behavior, she witnessed the affect incarceration had on the children, and saw that it was   particularly hard during the Christmas season. Through her company, Excellence in Success, she produces several programs each year with proceeds used to  purchase toys and other items to be given at Christmas to children of incarcerated  parents. Wishing to extend support to these children beyond the holiday season, she founded C.H.E.L.A. 4 Kids, a non-profit organization that is working to establish peer to peer support groups across the state.


Alicia’s parents taught her that if you can’t be a tree, then be the best bush around. So, to follow her parent’s teachings, she has worked hard to touch many populations through her efforts to give back. Her publication “InnerVisions,” celebrates the spirit of altruism, and recognizes others in the community who do the same. 

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Quilla Bohannon

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Quilla  Bohannan, hairstylist and master wig-maker, is building confidence  and  bringing smiles to children who have lost their hair.  

Dr. Laverne C. Nimmons

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Dr. Nimmons career has proven that passion and professionalism can make the difference when it comes to educating our youth.  

Toneisha Colson

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Toneisha D. Colson is the Founder of The 5 Karat Tiara Girls Mentorship Program, a not-for-profit organization.  

Nyleescia Crosby

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Nyleescia founded FabDiva Gems & Jewels in 2016, an organization dedicated to girls' and women's empowerment. 

Shantay Carter

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Accomplished  nurse, Shantay Carter, is also the founder of Women Of Integrity Inc.  The seven-year-old organization’s mission is to “empower and educate  women of all ages and ethnicities.”  

Tracé Wilkins Francis

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Tracé  Wilkins Francis is passionate about two things, children and  literacy. She established Annie Jean Publishing, Inc., and under it  published The Real-Life Adventures of Jo Jo Bean. 

Angela Raymond

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Master  acting teacher and playwright, Angela Raymond, through her  revolutionary progressive ideas and arts incentives, is actively  changing the way children learn and express themselves. 

Marisa Estrella

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 After  serving her Country, Marisa returned and dedicated her life to fighting  for the rights and humane treatment of fellow veterans. She founded the  non-profit Worldwide Veterans and Family Services. 

Judith Gaffney

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Judith  Gaffney is a World Changer with a big heart! She started her own  fashion company, Culture Tees, with a portion of all sales going to help  children and families living in shelters and others in need. 

Jaqueline Love

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Jacqueline  Love is a dynamic woman with over 20 years of experience in the  educational, entertainment and fashion industries.  She is our Fashioning Their Future Award Winner - a special award given to a person selected exclusively by M.G. Ballard Designs.  

Marva G. Ballard - Essential Elements Collection

Marva G. Ballard has been designing professionally for over 36 years under the label M.G. Ballard Designs,  established in Indianapolis, Indiana in 1980. The designer has moved  operations as she has moved about in her multi-faceted career an artist,  designer and educator. She relocated from Indianapolis to Tuskegee, AL  in 1987 to teach Fashion Merchandising at Tuskegee University. Returning  to full-time work as a designer in 1999, she began selling through  retailers across the country.
 

She is best known for her Signature Collection of leather wearable and decorative art owned by many celebrities and  professional men and women across the country.  As a fine artist, she  incorporates leather and other textiles in developing mixed media  pieces. She also works as a graphic artist creating works for print as  well as other wearables. 


In 2011 she began offering the Essential Elements Collection of knit apparel.  The Collection is made-to-order in the US and  provides opportunities for young single mothers to earn income. Their  hours are flexible, designed to wrap around the hours they need to  attend school so they can better their lives and those of their  children.  Read more at www.mgballarddesigns.com.

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Vera Moore - Vera Moore Cosmetics

CEO,  Vera Moore former actress turned  entrepreneur is President & CEO of  the highly competitive family  owned business, Vera Moore Cosmetics.  Over the past 5 years Vera has  built one of the most progressive and  prestigious cosmetics and  skincare lines for the global market.


Vera   was contracted on national television as one of the first black   actresses on the soap opera “Another World” NBC where she portrayed   “Linda Metcalf” for ten years. She immediately realized the void in the   market for quality products for women of color, specifically a natural   looking foundation that didn’t rub off on your clothes. This gave  birth  to Vera Moore Cosmetics. 


Her   journey has led to national recognition on the covers of Black   Enterprise Magazine, Network Journal’s 25 Influential Black Women in   Business, Networking Women, featured in the Wall Street Journal,  Upscale  Magazine, Beauty Store Business, received the Success Stories  Award  from Volvo Cars of North America, has hosted her own half hour  radio  segment “Skin Deep & Moore on WWRL Radio and featured in  Black  Enterprise’s Book Collection - "Against All Odds”. She holds many   credits for other television programs and Broadway shows including the   Tony Award winning Broadway Musical “Purlie Victorious. Read more at www.veramoorecosmetics.com.

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C.H.E.L.A. 4 Kids is a nonprofit organization that works to provide support and services to children of incarcerated parents.  Click HERE to learn more.

For the Girls of our Villages

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Bishop  Desmond Tutu is quoted as saying “If we are going to see real  development in the world then our best investment is women.” 

Research  tells us that investing in the welfare and development of women  benefits not only the women themselves but changes the trajectory of  their families and the well-being of their communities. Research also  tells us that the earlier we begin that investment the better.   Considering this, we must embrace and guide the girls in our villages.   We must help them build their self-esteem and feelings of self-worth,  help them recognize their gifts, expose them to their possibilities, and  help them set a course for an education that will lead them to  prosperity. Additionally, we must help them develop the resilience they  will need to stay strong through the changes and adversity they will  surely face.

 

Within  our villages there are girls like Oprah Winfrey, who was fired from her  first job as a news anchor for being too emotionally involved in the  stories she reported. However, when they made her the host of a little  talk show that was doing poorly in the ratings, just to let her ride out  her contract, she found her seat of greatness and followed a path that  changed the trajectory of her life. But her success also changed the  trajectory of the lives of so many more, including the girls being  educated at her Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa. Within our  villages there are other girls like J.K Rowling, who went from being a  single mother on welfare to a best-selling author and billionaire with  her Harry Potter books and film franchise. Her philanthropic efforts  combat poverty and social inequality as well as provide funds for other  organizations that aid children, one-parent families, and multiple  sclerosis research. Within our village there are other girls like Ieshia  Champs, the single mother of five who, against all possible odds, at  the age of 33, graduated Magna Cum Laude from Law School, and soon after  passed the bar exam.

  

These  women are examples of why we recognize the women who not only excel in  their professions, but accept the opportunity to be role models, and  actively pave the way for others by sharing their time, talent and  resources. In  addition, we recognize them because they are willing to share their  raw, honest “stories” - the stories that provide encouragement by demonstrating that setbacks, challenges, even tragedies, don’t have  to mean the end of the journey or the inability to reach a goal. To us,  these are the Women Who Rock Their Roles!

~ M.G. Ballard