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Al Harrington’s Viola Makes History As the First Multinational Black-Owned Cannabis Brand

Former NBA star turned entrepreneur Al Harrington is on a mission to make the cannabis industry a Black-owned enterprise — starting with his brand Viola. Forbes reports that Harrington’s cannabis line is expanding its products to Canada after sharing that Avicanna — a cannabinoid-focused biopharmaceutical company — will be licensing the brand and using it to help develop specific formulations for sale across the country’s medical and consumer retail channels. The company’s “commitment to research and development of cannabis in the medical and pharmaceutical industries makes them the perfect biotech partner to bring Viola’s brand to our Northern neighbors,” he said. “We’re excited to announce our partnership with Avicanna to expand into the Canadian market,” Harrington told Forbes. “Becoming the first Black-owned multinational brand is a significant milestone for Viola, and we look forward to expanding our product offering and Viola’s mission into a new market.” For the use of its...

Njera Perkins

Mar 24, 2021

Dr. Brian Hemphill Makes History As the First-Ever Black President of Old Dominion University

It’s never too late to make history, and Old Dominion’s latest announcement proves to be a step in a new direction for the school. According to a formal university announcement, the university’s Board of Visitors shared that by unanimous vote it has selected Dr. Brian Hemphill as the ninth president, making him the first-ever Black person to hold such a position since the college was founded in 1930. We’re pleased to announce Dr. Brian O. Hemphill has been named #ODU ’s ninth president: #ODU #ReignOnward #ODUPresidentElect — Old Dominion University (@ODU) February 12, 2021 “It is both an honor and privilege to be selected as the ninth president of Old Dominion University, a dynamic public research institution that has proudly served the Hampton Roads region and positively impacted the Commonwealth of Virginia,” Dr. Hemphill shared in a statement. “I must express my sincere appreciation to members of the Board of Visitors, the...

Njera Perkins

Feb 22, 2021

Seattle Seahawks Appoint Karen Wilkins-Mickey As First Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

This week, the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks announced Karen Wilkins-Mickey as its first-ever Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, a newly-created role for the organization, Black Enterprise reports. Within her new position, Wilkins-Mickey will lead the Seahawks’ overall diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, and act as a liaison for the team, its senior management group, players and the community to lead initiatives and programs. She will report directly to Seahawks President Chuck Arnold. “I am thrilled to welcome Karen to the Seahawks family as our organization’s first Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion,” said Arnold in a statement. “Our organization is guided upon core values of acceptance and understanding that help us create a culture of respect, equality and inclusiveness both on and off the field. Over the past year, we’ve looked to take additional meaningful steps to directly address inequality and social justice efforts and felt it was critical to add...

Njera Perkins

Jan 20, 2021

NFL's Atlanta Falcons Name Terry Fontenot As Its First Black General Manager

Former New Orleans Saints’ vice president/assistant general manager for pro personnel, Terry Fontenot has officially joined the Atlanta Falcons as its newest general manager. The 40-year-old sports vet joins the Falcons’ organization after spending the last 18 years of his career with the Saints. According to Black Enterprise, this latest hiring makes Fontenot the team’s first Black general manager. It’s official! We have named Terry Fontenot our next general manager. — Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) January 19, 2021 “Over the last 18 years I have been honored and blessed with the opportunity to learn and grow within a great organization,” Fontenot wrote in a prepared statement. “I don’t have the words to express my thanks and gratitude to the late Mr. [Tom] Benson, Mrs. Benson, Mickey Loomis, Dennis Lauscha, Coach [Sean] Payton, and the entire Saints family. Without their mentorship and guidance, I would not be in the position I am today, and we are...

Njera Perkins

Jan 19, 2021

Harvard Students Elect Black Male Student as Undergraduate Council President For the First Time Ever

Becoming a Harvard student is a high achievement on its own, but to become the student body president thanks to your peers is an even greater one. Just ask 20-year-old Noah Harris, the first Black man to be elected by the student body to become president of Harvard’s Undergraduate Council, reports Hattiesburg American. Harris is a junior government major from Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He succeeds two other Black students who have headed Harvard’s Undergraduate Council. The first to serve in the role, Cary Gabay, was a Black man chosen in 1993 by members of the council, and the second was a Black woman, Fentrice Driskell, who was also elected. “I definitely don’t take that lightly,” Harris said of the confidence placed in him. “Especially with everything that went on this summer with the death of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, all the protests that went on in this moment of racial reckoning in this country. This is a major statement by the Harvard student body to...

Niki McGloster

Nov 24, 2020