Political Commentator Symone Sanders, Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph, Black Girls CODE CEO Kimberly Bryant Among Those to be Honored at 15th Annual McDonald’s 365Black Awards in New Orleans July 8

WHAT: The 15th annual McDonald’s® 365Black® Awards is set to bring everyday heroes and celebrities from across the country to the Ritz Carlton, New Orleans. The dynamic event will take place during ESSENCE Festival® weekend and recognize exceptional leaders who make positive contributions to the African-American community. McDonald’s presence at the Essence Festival affirms the brand’s dedication to celebrating everyday people who are striving to make a positive difference in their communities and move Black culture forward.

2018 Honorees:

Symone Sanders is a champion for women, communities of color and those in need. Sanders is a go-to political commentator, a Spring 2018 Resident Fellow at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics and the Strategist for Communications and Political Outreach at Priorities USA. Symone rose to prominence during her tenure as the National Press Secretary for U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders presidential campaign. At 25, Symone demonstrated an uncanny command of the issues earning her a place in history as the youngest presidential press secretary on record and a spot-on Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of 16 young Americans shaping the 2016 election.

Sheryl Lee Ralph is an acclaimed veteran of film, television and the Broadway stage. Her award-winning work includes creating the role of Deena Jones in the legendary Broadway musical, “Dreamgirls” and earning Best Actress nods for Tony and Drama Desk Awards. No stranger to television, Sheryl Lee Ralph’s past TV credits include “It’s a Living,” “Designing Women,” “The District,” and “Moesha.” For the last three years, Sheryl was a lead on the hit Nickelodeon series “Instant Mom”. Ralph is also the creator of the Jamerican Film and Music Festival. Ralph has been one of Hollywood’s biggest voices in the fight on HIV/AIDS for over two decades with her Divas Simply Singing foundation.

HBCU Forward Scholarship award recipient:

Kimberly Bryant is the founder and CEO of Black Girls CODE, a non-profit organization dedicated to “changing the face of technology” by introducing girls of color (ages 7-17) to the field of technology and computer science with a concentration on entrepreneurial concepts. Bryant enjoyed a successful career in pharmaceutical and biotech industries for more than 20 years. She has helped Black Girls CODE grow from a local initiative to an international organization serving more than 7,000 students. She was named a White House Champion of Change and received a Social Progress award from the Smithsonian Institute for her national work in increasing opportunities for women and girls in technology.

Monique Vann-Brown is the owner of seven McDonald’s franchises in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area and managing partner of her parent’s two Detroit restaurants. Her career began at the age of 14 as a crew member at one of her parent’s McDonald’s locations. She transitioned into the automotive industry at 17 as an engineering intern. After several years in supply chain management, she pursued her dreams of entrepreneurship in the McDonald’s Corporation Registered Applicant & Next Generation Programs. She soon became Co-Chair of the National Black McDonald’s Operator’s Association. This committee produced events designed to serve as a forum for future leaders within the McDonald’s Owner-Operator community.

Tishauna Wilson is a rising junior majoring in computer science at Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University. She learned how to code in high school where she graduated at the top of her class. Earlier this year, Wilson revived the computer science research program at her university, where she is working on four Artificial Intelligence projects. The research projects consist of detecting fraud through conversations, identifying credit card fraud, as well as developing a voice-activated, self- driving drone and a basketball referee system. Wilson has hopes of pursuing a Ph.D. in Computer Science, founding an autonomous automotive manufacturing company, developing into a distinguished engineer and researcher and becoming a future CEO of a Fortune 500 technology company.

This year’s McDonald’s 365Black Awards will be hosted by acclaimed actress Essence Atkins. The luncheon will feature an all-star line-up of musical performances by R&B swooner Dave Hollister and gospel heavy-hitter Le’Andria Johnson.

Define Your Summer Look with Rimmel London

With the summer sun creating perfect lighting all day long, using selfie-proof makeup is more important than ever. Rimmel London has you covered with the Insta Duo Contour Stick and Wonder Wing Eyeliner. This dynamic duo contours your face and your eyes for a more defined look that will take you from day to night!
Insta Duo Contour Stick
Price: $6.99
Availability: Mass drugstores nationwide
Portable and ultra-smooth, Insta Duo Contour Stick will keep your cheekbones defined and highlight sublime. Comprised of a dual-sided applicator, just swipe and blend this selfie approved the formula for a look that showcases all your best features. Available in three duos work with your skin tone – light, medium, and dark.
Wonder Wing Eyeliner Stamp
Price: $6.99
Availability: Mass drugstores nationwide

8 Ways to Spice Up Your Work Wardrobe from HOUSE OF TERRANCE

Women really want to know how to spice up their work wardrobes. We say adding on-trend accessories is the easiest, most cost-effective way to spice it up at work!

1. Shoot Some Hoops — Earrings are always an easy way to add some style to your look. This season the hoop game is strong! Check out these 3 very different styles which can easily be paired with basic work outfits to add a little spice.
Gold Triple Circle Hoop Earrings
Large Colorful Bead Hoop Earrings
Modernist Gold Oval Hoops
2. Draw Straw  — The little straw bag is having a moment like I haven’t seen since the 90s! Adding one to your look can really take your style cred up a notch. This season there are so many cute affordable ones to choose from in addition to the culty Cult Gaia bag every fashion girl has been carrying around for a couple of seasons.
Urban Outfitters Crossbody Straw Bag
Catch tote from Anthropologie
Rebecca Minkoff Straw Crossbody Bag
3. Get Cuffed — Nothing adds a more stylish touch to an outfit than a bold cuff. And you double the effect when you sport matching ones. These beauties from H*O*T are just the thing!
Basketweave Gold Tone Cuff
Abalone Shell Stretch Cuff
Carved Floral Gold Tone Cuff
4. Buy Belts — Finally belts are back in the spotlight where they belong! I’ve always loved this particular accessary and found it to be such an easy way to add color, structure and style to an outfit. This summer we’re seeing a wide range of belt styles and one of them is bound to appeal. I’ve included 3 top belt styles; the western belt, the handy belt bag and the logo belt.
B-Low the Belt Bri Bri Belt
Zara Belt Bag
Tory Burch Logo Belt
5. Stylize Your ID — Practical yet immensely stylish, Fashion Ids truly illustrate the saying ‘necessity is the mother of invention’!  Some years back when I still worked in a large Ad Agency I was unhappy wearing my work ID on an ugly lanyard. So good friend and colleague Mark Fina and I created FASHIONids, the perfect way to express your style while keeping an ID at hand. Handmade with vintage jewelry pieces and found objects, they’re an excellent way to add personality to your work wardrobe no matter what that consists of. Here are 3 favorites:
Copper Chain with Black Wood Leaves FASHIONid
This Pearl is a Star FASHIONid
Golden Charms FASHIONid
6. Tie One On — A couple of weeks ago I recounted how impressed I was with French Womens’ ability to wear a scarf, when I first landed in Paris to live and still today. And I know why. It’s because it’s the one accessory that makes every outfit look better! Here are 3 that will uplift your most basic work ensemble.
& Other Stories Peony Scarf 
Zara Pleated Polka Dot Scarf
Ferragamo Scarf
7. Lighten Up — Ok I know you’re thinking that there’s no way you’re getting stylish and comfortable in one shoe but I promise you it’s possible. These are 3 pairs that I have recent experience with and couldn’t be happier. The Everlane Day shoe blew me away, so cute and comfortable! Although I’m not a fan of the brand’s overly basic basics they’ve really nailed the great looking comfort shoe. Cole Haan with zerogrand technology is like walking on a cloud. And finally go for Allbirds if you want to join the cool kids comfort shoe club 🙂 I promise you won’t take them off.

Everlane Day Heel
Cole Haan ZEROGRAND Oxford
Allbirds Tree Runners

8. Artify Your Phone — Yes phone cases are style accessories too! I bet you’re never without yours and it should be as fashionable as you are. That’s easy with the 3 examples below, all products of our H*O*T artist collaborations with Pauline de Rousy de Sales and Patrick-Earl Barnes.
Red Pants Woman iPhone Case by Pauline de Roussy de Sales
Moncler Dog iPhone Case by Pauline de Roussy de Sales
Woman Red Dress on Blue by Patrick-Earl Barnes


A Girls Guide to Getting Through the Summer Heat

Stay sweat-free and odor-free all day long with Ban Purely Gentle Roll-On Deodorant ($10, Amazon.com)

A non-irritating formula that’s tough on sweat but gentle on the skin. This deodorant incorporates 24-hour protection with a new, gentler formula, ensuring round the clock defense even for those with the most sensitive skin.

Keep your hair off your neck with the help of Hairdo Simply Straight Pony ($49, Ulta.com)


This strut-your-stuff pony delivers the style points straight-up by instantly adding length, verve, and volume to your ponytail. Wrap around easily and secure your pony high, low or to the side.

Keep your skin moisturized while achieving a non-oily, velvety finish with Erborian BB Crème ($39, Sephora.com)


Containing break-through high-tech formulas, this BB Crème evens out and mattifies the complexion, moisturizes and plumps the skin, refines skin’s texture and reduces the appearance of blemishes. Your skin will appear visibly softer, smoother and beautiful with a silky feel.

The First Fashion Business Association for Emerging Designers to Revolutionize Industry

Beth Sobol, with more than 30 years of experience in the fashion industry, founder of the original Miami Fashion Week, and Global Brand Ambassador for FASHION domains have launched the Fashion Business Association of America (FBAA).

The FBAA strategic partners are a group of top experts within the global fashion and business industries that have joined forces in providing information and resources on relevant, current and correct best business practices for today’s ever-changing American market.

“We are very excited with our new branding as it reflects exactly our association represents; we are THE fashion business association for the American market. Building a professional platform to provide designers of all levels access to true industry experts that will educate and guide them through today’s changing retail and business landscapes is essential in achieving commercial success in today’s American market” says Sobol.

The first of its kind for the fashion industry, the FBAA is a one-stop shop for designers seeking advice and guidance in positioning their businesses for growth in a complex domestic and international fashion market. Among the many benefits, FBAA members will have access to the industries top experts to help them navigate through the critical stages and challenges facing designers and to help them sustain in today’s digital and disruptive market.

“Entering the U.S. market is challenging and costly if you don’t get the dynamics right”, says Sonia Garcia, founder of Fashion Market Entry, a division of KREA Global and strategic partner of the FBAA.

Membership in the FBAA is open to apparel, accessories, textiles and home décor designers and brands around the world in women’s wear, men’s wear, lingerie, swimwear, athleisure, jewelry, shoes, and handbags, as well as textiles, and home accessories and décor, fashion retailers, international trade offices, empowerment foundations, fashion councils and related industry professionals.

Designers joining in June and July will receive a special summer discount of 10% off the annual membership fee to be part of this exciting platform. Further special consideration is given to groups of 20+ designers joining together. All memberships include a virtual showroom with our partners at Bamboo Rose and access to our team of unrivaled fashion business experts.

The FBAA, together with Bamboo Rose, a provider of the product innovation platform that connects retail communities, have collaborated to create the Bamboo Rose “House of Fashion” a virtual showroom providing FBAA members with access to global buyers and resources never before possible for an emerging brand.

“Designers and brands today are under more pressure to innovate and reach wider markets than ever before. The traditional approach to developing products and reaching buyers doesn’t cut it,” said Sue Welch, CEO of Bamboo Rose. “Designers, retailers, and brands need new ways to reach international buyers and quickly receive feedback on their product for their particular markets. The Bamboo Rose House of Fashion provides a unique online community that connects FBAA designers with international retail buyers to ultimately give consumers a more appealing, high-quality product.”

FBAA members will have access to a dream team of experts and resources in many phases of retail strategies, fashion law, factoring and finance, brand development & buyers outreach, digital marketing strategies and much more. “Beth has spent the last 2 ½ years working diligently to assemble her team of advisers for this much-needed service said Aaron Perry,” Beth’s former business partner with Miami Fashion Week and a shareholder in the FBAA.

“Today’s designers need to be smarter and more aware of the changing consumer shopping habits than ever before. These monumental changes have precipitated a need for different methods of financing businesses. E-commerce plays a greater and greater role in brand building and it thereby requires a different approach to capital needs and allocations. Wholesale channels of distribution are also morphing daily. The more informed small business owners are, the better prepared they will be to find a path to growth and profitability in this new environment. I look forward to providing insights and financing opportunities through the FBAA to its membership,” said Gary A. Wassner, CEO, Principal, Hilldun Corporation, and shareholder in the FBAA.

To learn more about the Fashion Business Association of America (FBAA) please visit www.FBAA.fashion

Dressing Yourself For Different Types Of Events: Summer Fashion

You never know when you’ll be faced with the challenge of picking out an outfit for a particular type of event. No matter what you’re up to, it’s important to have a few of the essential wardrobe staples in your closet. This way you’ll always be equipped to dress for any sort of occasion that might pop up.

You always want to be prepared for whatever activities you feel like doing or invitations that may come your way because it’ll make your life easier. Take the time to sort through and organize your closet now so you can effortlessly get dressed when the time comes.

Featured Photo Yara Shahidi MTV Movie Awards

First Date

Every woman needs a nice fitting pair of dark jeans in her closet because they’re so versatile. You can either dress them up or down depending on where you’re going, and no one will even know or care if you wear them twice in one weekend. Own a go-to pair that makes you feel confident no matter what the activity you’re participating in. Go shopping and take your time trying different pairs on until you find the perfect match for your body type. An additional wardrobe staple you should have in your closet is a mix of colorful blousy tops you can pair with your jeans. Don’t be afraid to purchase tops that have stylish patterns and designs in addition to bold solids.

Music Concert

Hop online at Ticket sales and attend a concert or show with your friends in your free time. What you’ll want in your closet is a little black dress you can throw on for this type of occasion. You can turn this one piece of clothing into many outfits by wearing it with a jean jacket, with a large pair of sparkly earrings or plain with a heel that adds a pop of color. A little black dress is one staple you definitely want to make sure you secure because you’ll be getting a lot of use out of in the future. This is also a chance for you to play with your makeup and use unique shades you normally wouldn’t wear from day-to-day.

Backyard BBQ

You never know when you’re going to be asked to join your friends or family for an outdoor BBQ, especially in the summertime when it’s nice and warm outside. Invest in a pair or two of solid colored or black shorts and wear them with your favorite tank top. You can also spruce up your outfit a bit by buying a pair of strappy sandals that add style to your feet. Bring a cardigan sweater along should the temperature drop and you want to cover up.


The weekend is an opportunity for you to unwind and have fun celebrating the marriage between two people you adore. You’re going to have a more enjoyable time attending this type of event when you know you look good. Find a dress that’s classy and flattering and that you can easily move around in. Complete your outfit by accessorizing and layering to help spruce up dull or plainer garments and bring all that you’re wearing together nicely. For example, grab an attractive handbag on your way out the door or put on a statement necklace that catches people’s attention.


Your life is going to be that much more fun and pleasant when you’re prepared for any occasion. Start cleaning out your closet now and filling it with these pieces to help you always feel confident and stylish. You’ll thank yourself later for being prepared to get ready and not having to think too hard about what you’re doing.

Collaborative Post

8 Steps to Get Your Mojo Back This Summer

New beginnings are the most exciting and energizing times in life. Summer is always a new beginning because it’s a new season. Now is a great time to get fired up, motivated, and start making changes to get to your next level of YOU. Mojo is that magical charisma you carry that makes you feel good and infectious to others.

Featured Photo from Stylecaster.com

Most of you are great starters but not all are great finishers. If you have lost your mojo and want to be a better you for summer, commit to a new beginning right now. Here are 7 ways to get your mojo back and keep it flourishing:

1. Change your environment: Change the environments in your life which are now grey and uninspiring.  Do some of your work out of the office, redecorate your house and add more color, spend time on your patio, leave your cubical and go out for lunch. If you are getting tired, get up and move to another room. Add music or white noise to create something soothing. Changing the appearance and location of your differing environments helps you to think in more different and innovative ways. The more innovative you are the more mojo you have.

2. Strive to be your best: Always envision yourself as being your ‘ideal self.’ Your ‘ideal self’ is that part of you which is in front of you encouraging you forward. This part of you is holding up the guideposts and possibilities for your growth, happiness, and expansion. What you think determines your outcome.
Strive towards meeting your ‘ideal self’ at the finish line. If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. Work backward from the ‘ideal self’ by setting small, incremental goals for each area of your life to keep your mind positive. Before you know it you will be thriving as a better you before you hit summer. You will feel your confidence growing as you begin to manifest all you have been working towards.

3. Change Your Patterns: When you break your routines you essentially create a new life. Habits are easy but there is no risk in the habit because ultimately habits are lazy. You cannot grow stuck inside the traps familiarity and comfort. To get your mojo back, be brave! Buy that Groupon for the new class around the corner and give it a go. Change your diet, change your work out, change your wardrobe, buy different make-up, and class-up your personal style. Eat at new restaurants, go to new bars. Go to the gym after work? Try raising your heart rate before you get to the office. If you eat at the same restaurant for lunch all the time, walk one block farther to check out a new spot. See what happens by simply sitting on the other side of your desk, giving you a new perspective by looking out at different wall or window.

4. Shift Your Priorities: Your daily schedule is a reflection of your deepest priorities. If you have zero fun, free time or time for family and friends actually on your calendar, and instead your calendar is booked up with meetings and other task-oriented responsibilities, then you are missing out on the juiciest parts of life. Robots do not have mojo. To re-ignite your mojo schedule time for yourself first. On a plane, they always tell you to put on your oxygen mask before helping someone else. Once you have given yourself time to refuel, block times to enjoy with family, friends, children to add joy and vitality to your life.
On your deathbed, you are not going to look back and wish you had worked more hours.

5. Invest in personal growth: The best of the best have the best of the best of the best as mentors, friends, family, and colleagues. Learn as much as you possibly can from other successful, happy people who want to share their wisdom with you. The ball is in your court: Make the effort to keep yourself in a place of personal expansion, whether that means going to seminars, meeting weekly with a coach or therapist, reading books each night and writing goals, but strive to be your very best at all time. This always gives you something to talk about and it makes you interesting to other people.

6. Change your friends: The people with whom you surround yourself heavily influence you. If you’re lacking motivation and feeling down about everything, it might be time to upgrade your circle of influence. Negativity is contagious, as is positivity. Those closest to you should be those who bring out your best qualities, including your mojo for life’s adventures. If more time with family is important to you then start planning some vacations and staycations for all you to get away and enjoy being a family without other distractions. Take time out to have dinner with the girls or watch the game with the boys or go play a round of golf. Your net worth emotionally is the average of that of your five closest friends. When you hang out with successful people, happy, fulfilled people you elevate your own mojo, so choose wisely.

7. Change Your Thoughts: You are what you think. You cannot think negative and have powerful mojo. If you think you are fat then that will be your experience whether you are or aren’t. Thinking negatively doesn’t accomplish anything, it takes zero effort and is a lazy mojo-stealing habit. Discipline your mind towards the goals of what you want to look like and be like and start putting the effort in now to get there. By summer you will feel fabulous. In any situation suffering over your own suffering doesn’t work. Know the areas of your life you want to change and be deliberate in changing them.

8. Be Authentic: There is nothing sexier than to be beautiful inside and out. When you are committed to your loving and respecting yourself you exude a quiet confidence. Your focus is on being genuine, kind, strong, courageous, intelligent, successful, elegant, steadfast and fulfilled. You possess enough composure that if you cannot say something kind you have the wisdom to remain quiet. You make sure the kindness of your character speaks more deliberately to who you are than what designer you are wearing.

True mojo is not a loud energy, rather it is an understated energy. Loud is repulsive ego-stuff. Your mojo is that more subtle energy your personal essence leaves in the wake of your presence. This is something to admire. There is nothing more mojo promoting than authenticity and having a strong sense of who you are.

Not all of these changes are easy. They all require a deliberate change of habit, which can feel like an insurmountable challenge. Getting your mojo back is critical for your quality of life so it certainly causes for some radical changes and the outright shattering of your own tired habits. Face it – feeling passionate and motivated every day for your work, family, and self is a win for yourself and those that depend on you.

Dr. Sherrie Campbell is an author of the new book, Success Equations: A Path to Living an Emotionally Wealthy Life. She is a veteran psychologist, inspirational speaker, and radio host. For more information, please visit, www.sherriecampbellphd.com and connect with her on Facebook, @sherriecampbellphd.


Tips For Helping Your Teen Get Ready For Prom

Prom is a very important moment in every teen’s life. It concludes a great chapter that you will remember forever, especially if it’s a successful experience. All mothers know that their girls are excited about their prom and counting down to the exciting night. As a mother, you want your teen to have the best night, and you have a few responsibilities to take care of. Teenagers are hard work because they think they know how to take the best decision when it comes to their prom. This can generate arguments and worries in the household. Fortunately, there are a few tips which you can keep in mind to reduce the amount of stress and anxiety that both you and your daughter are going through.

Featured Photo from Hollywood Life.com

Set a Budget

Money is often the main factor that generates stress. However, if you manage to put a budget in place and discuss it up front with your child, you are very likely to eliminate unnecessary arguments caused by this factor. Teens imagine expensive proms that they see in movies or on social media, and the problem is that your child expects you to work very hard so that they can achieve or recreate the same looks. To secure your bank account, put a budget in place and discuss it with your teen so that she knows exactly what to expect from her prom.

Help Her Find the Best Outfit

A lot of teens are stressed when it comes to picking the right dress. Whether you are shopping online or in physical stores, the options are unlimited. Therefore, you can facilitate this task by giving your daughter a hand. For example, you can look at this site to find a variety of plus size prom dresses in a range of colors and styles, from long to mid-length. There are a few elements that need considering before making a decision, some of them include the style, the color, the event and obviously, the budget. Last but not least, you cannot forget about shoes and accessories.

Hair and Makeup

Both the hairdo and the makeup should mix well with the dress and the rest of the accessories. For professional help, you could book an appointment in advance. However, you could save some money by having a look at online tutorials and trying to recreate them. Take some time to consider the right makeup that complements and accentuates the dress. Save a few pictures on your phone for inspiration.


Everyone remembers their prom night for the rest of their life thanks to the prom pictures that will be proudly displayed by their parents. That is why it is important to be prepared to immortalize the most important events with a camera. Think of different poses and locations. Outdoor shots are a perfect way of remembering prom night for a long time. Make sure to include the rest of the family too. Take as many pictures as you can because it’s always easier to pick the best ones and delete the rest instead of not having enough to choose from.

Prom is definitely a stressful time for parents and teens alike. Make sure to get involved in the whole process, but let your teen make the last decisions to ensure they enjoy their prom night their way.

Collaborative Post

Ann Taylor Ruffle Denim Jacket: Must – Have Item

Ann Taylor is known for being a transitional store; meaning their clothing can be interchanged between every season.  The retailer carries classic suits and separates that will enhance anyone’s wardrobe.

Who doesn’t love a white denim jacket?  This piece of outwear can be dressed up or down.  In the Southern region, we vary between extremely hot and brisk cooler temperatures.  Having an item like the Ruffle Denim Jacket is a must-have piece to help combat this weather change.

There are so many style options for this particular jacket!   It can be worn with a pair of jeans, midi dress or pencil skirt.  The details of this piece are visible with a fringed neckline and ruffle waist.

Ann Taylor has so many items that are perfect for the everyday woman ranging from Sunday brunch to the boardroom.  The store is having a 50% off sale.  What better time than now to shop for new clothes during the new season.

Thank you, Ann Taylor, for this collaborative post!

Jacket:  Ann Taylor | Slacks:  New York & Company | Belt:  New York & Company | Bracelet:  PANDORA Jewelry