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2013 June

17 Jun


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07 Jun


Angela Rye to Guest Co-Host MSNBC’s The Cycle

June 7, 2013 | By |

NEW YORK—The week of June 10, 2013, Angela Rye, Director of IMPACT and political strategist, will serve as a guest co-host on MSNBC’s The Cycle. Rye has become a regular political pundit on many of MSNBC’s programs including Politics Nation with Rev. Al Sharpton, Martin Bashir, MSNBC Live, The Daily Rundown, and others. Next week, Rye will serve as a guest host on the popular network for the first time.  

WHO:              Angela Rye, Director, IMPACT

WHAT:             Guest Co-Host on MSNBC’s The Cycle

WHEN:            Monday, June 10 – Friday, June 14, 2013 at 3:00 PM Eastern Time

IMPACT (@teamIMPACT) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to engage and build a network of young professionals of color to foster civic engagement, increase knowledge of the political and legislative processes, and enhance economic empowerment opportunities. For additional information about IMPACT, visit


04 Jun


Winners of the “2013 Nation’s Best Advocates: 40 Lawyers Under 40” To Be Honored at National Bar Association Gala

June 4, 2013 | By |

WASHINGTON, D.C. –  IMPACT and the National Bar Association (NBA) will honor the “Nation’s Best Advocates: 40 Lawyers Under 40” at a special awards gala on Saturday, July 27, 2013 during NBA’s 88th Annual Convention in Miami, Florida.

Nation’s Best Advocates recognizes talented individuals (age 40 and under) within the African American legal community who have achieved prominence and distinction, professionally and philanthropically. Selected nominees represent a cross-section of legal professionals: solo practitioners, government lawyers, judges, academicians, corporate counsels, young elected officials, and other lawyers using their degree in innovative ways. Nominees were chosen based on their achievement, innovation, vision, leadership, and legal community involvement.

“The NBA is proud to partner again with IMPACT for this year’s 40 Lawyers Under 40 event. We applaud the awardees for their significant accomplishments and contributions towards the legal profession and community,” said John Page, NBA President.  “We look forward to honoring these awardees during our 88th Annual Convention in Miami and most importantly, we look forward to sustaining our mission of service and ensuring that justice is achieved by all.”

“The 2013 Nation’s Best Advocates: 40 Lawyers Under 40 are continuing the tradition of legal giants in American history,” said IMPACT Director Angela Rye. “The invaluable contributions made by these attorneys establish a standard for service and excellence in our communities and our Nation.”

The recipients of the Nation’s Best Advocate of the Year, Excellence in Leadership, Service, Activism, and Innovation awards will be recognized at the event, which is the only of its kind. For more information, visit:

2013 Nation’s Best Advocates: 40 Lawyers Under 40

·         Barbara J. Walker, Associate, Parks & Crump, LLC

·         Breon C.M. Walker, Partner, Gallivan, White & Boyd, PA.

·         Candice S. Petty, Corporate Counsel, 24 Hour Fitness USA, Inc.

·         Carlos Leach, Partner, Morgan and Morgan, PA

·         Cassandra Georges, Mediator &Arbitrator, Above and Beyond Dispute Resolution, LLC

·         Chigozie Onyema, Policy Analyst, Council of State Governments

·         Craig A. A. Dixon, Assistant Vice President, Senior Counsel and Assistant Secretary, Smithfield Foods, Inc.

·         Dannelle F. Walker, General Counsel, Tennessee State Board of Education

·         Edward “Ted” James, II, State Representative, District 101, Louisiana House of Representatives

·         E.M. Lysonge, Vice President, Legal Affairs, Churchill Downs Incorporated.

·         Evangeline M. Mitchell, Principal, Persistence of Vision LLC/Founder & Executive Director, National Black Pre-Law  Conference and Law Fair

·         Harmon L. (Monty) Cooper, Associate, Sedgwick, LLP

·         JaDawnya Butler, Assistant District Attorney, Fulton County, GA

·         JaRai A. Williams, Appellate Defense Counsel, United States Air Force Judge Advocate General’s Corps

·         Jasmine Rand, Associate, Parks and Crump, LLC

·         Justin Fairfax, Justin Fairfax for Virginia

·         Kristal Lauren High, Esq. , Editor and Chief Politic365

·         Lacy L. Durham, Tax Manager, Deloitte Tax, LLP

·         LaKeisha C. Marsh, Associate Vice President and Counsel, TCS Education System

·         Lashonda Council Rogers, Managing Attorney, Council & Associates, LLC

·         Lynnette D. Espy-Williams, Partner, Cozen O’Connor

·         Malaika Billups, Associate, Burke, Williams & Sorensen, LLP

·         Marie Giraud, Associate, Morrison Mahoney

·         Michelle N. Lipkowitz, Partner, Saul Ewing, LLP

·         Monica D. Barnes, Assistant City Attorney, City of Miami Gardens, FL

·         Monique Liburd, Associate Trademark Counsel, Google, Inc.

·         Nichole Francis Reynolds, Chief of Staff, Congresswoman Terri Sewell

·         Nicole Isaac, Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, The White House

·         Radiance Harris, Associate, DLA Piper

·         Rashida MacMurray-Abdullah, Core Forensic & Dispute Services Manager, Deloitte Financial Advisory Services

·         Reginald Roberts, Jr., Co-Managing Partner, Sanders Roberts, LLP

·         Rhonda Peoples-Waters, President/CEO, Rhonda Peoples-Waters-PA

·         Shontavia Jackson Johnson, Owner, Johnson International Group, Assistant Professor of Law, Drake University Law School

·         Tanya Bullock, Judge, Virginia Beach Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court

·         Tara Dawson Elliott, Principal, Fish & Richardson, PC

·         Tashinda Glover Richardson, US Navy Judge Advocate General’s Corps

·         Valyncia Simmons, Partner, Baker Williams Matthiesen LLP

·         W. Dewayne Richardson, District Attorney, Fourth Judicial District of Mississippi

·         Wade Hinton, Deputy General Counsel, Volkswagon Group of America

·         Zulema Green, Regional Managing Attorney, Portfolio Recovery Associates

The National Bar Association was founded in 1925 and is the nation’s oldest and largest national network of predominantly African American attorneys and judges. It represents approximately 44,000 lawyers, judges, law professors and law students and has over 80 affiliate chapters throughout the United States and around the world. For additional information about the National Bar Association, visit

IMPACT (@teamIMPACT) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to engage and build a network of young professionals of color to foster civic engagement, increase knowledge of the political and legislative processes, and enhance economic empowerment opportunities. For additional information about IMPACT, visit


03 Jun


ORGANIZATION SPOTLIGHT | Other Side of the Stethoscope

June 3, 2013 | By |

Q&A with Korin Bhyat, Founder, Other Side of the Stethoscope

1. Tell us about your organization and the inspiration for it?

Other Side of the Stethoscope (OSTETH) was founded in honor of Korin Bhyat’s husband, Dr. Dan Bhyat, a Cleveland Clinic Resident and Howard Medical School Alum who was diagnosed with a rare form of Osteosarcoma in 2009. He braved numerous treatments, surgeries and medications, but unfortunately passed away after a hard-fought, three-year battle. Throughout it all, Dan remained optimistic and stayed committed to his work. As both a patient and a doctor, his work served as a daily distraction from his own prognosis and motivation to better serve his patients. No matter their condition, Dan supported his patients by prescribing a dose of humor and hope.

Through various initiatives and scholarships, OSTETH’s goal is to promote awareness about emotional support in the medical community. Physicians are on the front lines when it comes to keeping patients encouraged when dealing with health challenges. This organization seeks to reintroduce the human side of medicine. We aim to work with physicians early in their medical careers to develop a sense of empathy when dealing with patients. This will allow that compassion to translate into an exceptional bedside manner that positively impacts a patient’s state of mind and duration of life.

My inspiration to establish this nonprofit was not only to honor Dan, but as a wife and a care-taker along side his parents and siblings, who watched first-hand the physical, emotional, and mental challenges Dan faced in the hospital. When someone you love is facing a medical challenge, your only desire is to lessen their pain and suffering in any way that you can.

Throughout Dan’s battle with cancer, his family and I often felt helpless. The only thing we could do is be his advocate and keep him encouraged. We were exposed to physicians who continuously made Dan more scared than he already was and others that made him laugh and smile every time they walked in the room. This nonprofit aims to inspire more doctors who make the one’s we love laugh, smile, and hope.

2. What are the lessons you hope Dan’s life and legacy provides to young professionals of color?

I hope this nonprofit inspires future physicians of the world to follow their dreams and never lose sight of the fact that tomorrow is never promised. Dan was unique in so many instances being a biracial Canadian with a mother who was Catholic and a father was Muslim. I believe his diverse background, and open-minded upbringing from amazing parents, who were educators, gave him a truly revolutionary outlook on life. He never cast judgement on anyone and no matter how bad things got, he kept a smile on his face. I remember one time when Dan was on a clinical trial he said to me, “Maybe I have to go through all of this so that I can help find a cure for someone else down the line.” His selflessness and strength as he lived the last few years as both a physician and a patient encouraged those around him or who even knew his story to put things into perspective.

It’s amazing to see the number of people he inspired in and outside of medical field before he passed away at the young age of 30. I personally, believe it just goes to show that age, race, religion aren’t really a factor when you’re destined to change the world.

3. What has been the most difficult challenge and the greatest reward associated with establishing OSTETH?

The biggest challenge in establishing this non-profit was that it forced me to re-live a lot of the bad memories that made Dan so inspiring. I made the conscious decision to start his organization only a month after he passed without really factoring in all of the delays the mental grief process would cause for me. I just felt compelled to honor his legacy as soon as possible before I loss the strength to do it. Everything that this non profit stands for is built on on things we spoke about, he experienced and he believed in. Also, as someone with absolutely no experience starting a non profit, there was a steep learning curve for me along the way. Luckily my experiences with Dan and amazing support network allowed me to a lot of things along the way into perspective: most importantly …if it’s not life or death then it really isn’t that serious.

The greatest reward from establishing this organization is that it has the potential to impact a lot of lives in an amazing way while also upholding his legacy. I have no doubt he is proud of everything this organization aims to do.

Donations are more than welcomed via OSTETH’s website at:

03 Jun


INTERVIEW | Getting to Know the Moodie-Mills

June 3, 2013 | By |

Danielle & Aisha Moodie-Mills are a dynamic duo living and working in DC to eliminate the social, economic, and health disparities experienced by LGBT people of color.

Aisha Moodie-Mills (above right) is a democratic strategist with over a decade of experience of politics and policy. She is currently an Advisor at the Center for American Progress, where she directs the FIRE Initiative. She also appears regularly as a political commentator on MSNBC and FOX News, among others.

Danielle Moodie-Mills (above left) is an advocacy and government affairs consultant. From the classroom to Capitol Hill, she’s spent her career promoting social justice and actively lobbies for inclusive policies that enhance the lives of all Americans. Her writings are frequently pubilshed in The Atlantic,, and Huffington Post.


Tell us a little about the work you are doing today, and how you came to this point in your careers?

We are literally living, loving and laboring out loud together in our passions and politics, as our work has become as personal over the last few years as it is political.

We executive produce and co-host a weekly radio show called Politini where we serve politics and pop culture up with a twist!

We also currently serve as Advisors for LGBT Policy & Racial Justice at the Center for American Progress where Aisha runs the Fighting Injustice to Reach Equality (FIRE) policy initiative that we launched together in 2010.  FIRE works to eliminate the social, health and economic disparities experience by LGBT people of color, issues we encountered first-hand—and were inspired to tackle—as we successfully campaigned for marriage equality in the District of Columbia.

While our LGBT policy work reflects who we are personally, it is ultimately just an extension of the social justice values that have grounded our careers as far back as we can remember.  In fact we both started out working to improve the quality of education for low-income and urban students.

Our work has always been about building equitable and sustainable communities and we actualize this vision each day through our policy, media, and advocacy work.

If you could give one piece of advice to young professionals of color, specifically those in the LGBT community, what would it be and why?

Be Visible, Be Fabulous.

We have done a lot of great policy work over the years that we hope has helped to enhance the lives of those who seldom have a place at the table.  But our greatest impact has been in just simply being visible—and living, loving and laboring openly and authentically—as a lesbian couple.

The power of visibility really sunk in for us when Essence magazine profiled our wedding as their first ever lesbian wedding.  By telling our story, we challenged stereotypes, demystified what it means to be black and gay, and touched the hearts and minds of more people than we could have ever reached through months of advocacy work.

But we have found that we are most successful, both professionally and personally when we lead from a place of authenticity, and allow our full selves to shine bright.

Our message to young professionals of all persuasions is to be bold and authentic as you move through the world, be a positive model, and inspire.  Shine, not just to be seen, shine so others can see the way.


What inspires you to be your best selves in both your personal and professional lives?  

We want to use our work and our lives as a lesson to people that hard work and perseverance do pay off.  Each day presents a clean slate and an opportunity to start over—so rather than be weighted down with regret and the “woulda, coulda, shoulda’s” of life, we choose to control what we can and leave the rest up to Universe.  Too often, black and brown people are viewed as the “have-nots”, and think of themselves through a deficit lens.  We think that it’s important to put as much positive energy out into the world in the hopes that others can glean a little bit of that energy rather than be discouraged by the stereotypes of LGBT people, particularly those of color, that persist.

Breaking down barriers and living in the spirit of the present is what keeps us going, and we hope inspires others to the same.  In the words of our late friend David Baldwin Barnes, you should aspire to be exceptional and shoot for a life that is nothing less than outstanding!


What is your latest venture? What should we know about your most recent work?  

This year we launched a radio show, Politini, which serves politics and pop culture up with a twist!.  Each week on the show we turn a critical eye on current events and ask “for better or for worse, is this the new normal?”

Our society is changing rapidly and our common humanity often gets lost among the banter. Politini provides a fun forum to dish about the happenings of the week and to discuss how current social and political debates permeate our social consciousness and shape the way that we view ourselves, each other, and the world.  Think Melissa Harris-Perry meets E! News.

We also continue to pen our lifestyle blog, Living, Loving & Laboring OUT Loud, or threeLOL.


How can young professionals of color connect with you?


Tweet us @threeLOL.

Listen to us on Politini ever Thursday from 8-9pm EST.

Subscribe to our Politini podcast.

Read our blog

03 Jun


IL::Jaime Harrison

June 3, 2013 | By |



Congratulations to our June  2013 IMPACT Leader of the Month, Mr. Jaime Harrison.


Jaime Harrison draws on his mastery of the legislative process to help his clients at the Podesta Group maneuver complex congressional alignments related to transportation and infrastructure issues, among others. In addition to his work on behalf of clients on Capitol Hill, Jaime provides strategic and political guidance to clients based in or doing work in South Carolina. As the former director of floor operations and counsel for former House Majority Whip, Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC), he was responsible for the successful navigation and passage of key legislation and served as a senior political and legislative adviser. Accumulating a wealth of experience and a deep bench of relationships, Jaime worked closely with the House and Senate leadership.


Previously, Jaime served as executive director of the House Democratic Caucus.  Jaime has also appeared as a political strategist on CNN, MSNBC and ATN’s “American Dream.”


A teacher at heart, Jaime once taught world geography at his high school alma mater in Orangeburg, South Carolina. A first-generation college graduate, Jaime earned a bachelor’s from Yale University and Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center.


INTERVIEW | Getting to Know Jaime Harrison


What inspired you pursue a career in (politics, policy making and government relations)?

My life inspiration has always been to improve the lives and provide a voice for “the least of these” within our society.

Specifically, why did you decide to pursue elected office?

I decided to run for Chair of the South Carolina Democratic Party because I wanted to improve the lives of all South Carolinians.  I believe I will be able to provide the leadership the Democratic Party needs to build local and state party infrastructure, grow its presence in the electorate, and win elections in 2014. Every South Carolinian deserves the opportunity to experience the American Dream;  rebuilding the Democratic Party in SC takes us one step closer to that reality.


What is the key to balancing your professional, philanthropic and social commitments?

The most important thing in my life is my family.  When there is harmony with my family, then all other parts of my life tend to fall into place.  It is important to strike a balance between work and outside commitments, but that balance must include substantial time for yourself and your loved ones. This is a lesson in which I remind myself constantly.


What is the biggest mistake young professionals make, especially when pursuing careers in your politics and government?

Ambition and drive are great, but patience is as equally important.  Knowing when to step-back, listen, and learn is an important skill for any young professional, but is essential for those interested in politics.  We can learn so much from those who have come before us.


What advice would you give other young professionals who desire to excel, especially young men/women of color interested in becoming a young elected official of color)?

One of my favorite quotes is by David Frost, “Don’t aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in, and it will come naturally.”  My career advice is fairly simple and straightforward— follow your passions.  If you figure out the one or two things in your life that you love to do, then do them.  It is easy to get caught up in the competition of life and attempt to mimic the career paths of others, rather it is important to simply listen to the song in your heart and chart your own path.


What’s been the best experience of your career thus far (or the most rewarding)?

Serving as the Floor Director for the Majority Whip in the House of Representatives was a life changing experience.  It was an exhilarating and rewarding job.  Everyone—the Speaker of the House, White House staff, and Members of Congress–looks to the Floor Director for the answer to one question: Do we have the 218 votes needed to pass a specific bill?  This question is at the center of all legislative floor action.   My most gratifying experience as Floor Director was working on the Matthew Shephard Hate Crimes legislation. We worked to take the bill from an almost certain defeat to finding the 218 votes needed for passage.


What’s next for you in your career? What should we look out for?

My focus is to rebuild the SC Democratic Party by investing in county party infrastructure and recruiting talented candidates. Ultimately, my goal is for the Democratic Party to win the Governorship (amongst other offices) in 2014 and begin to put SC back on the right track.  Once the 2014 election cycle is completed, I will begin to make preparation for SC’s role as the first southern state in the 2016 Presidential Primary calendar.


Lastly, give me three words to sum up Jaime Harrison?

Compassionate; Loyal; Driven


What is your Twitter Handle? What email address can people use to reach you?

@harrisonjaime and @harrison4SC   Email-