Melinda Gates commits $1B to ‘expanding women’s power and influence in the United States’
LinkedIn
Melinda Gates in professional photo wearing a navy blue dress

Melinda Gates, whose book this year documented the systemic and societal challenges that continue to face women around the world, recently pledged $1 billion over the next 10 years to initiatives designed to accelerate gender equity in the United States.

By Todd Bishop

In a commentary announcing the plan on Time.com, Gates said the money will support “new and established partners taking innovative and diverse approaches to expanding women’s power and influence.”

It’s the biggest initiative yet from Gates through her standalone Pivotal Ventures firm, separate from her role as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Melinda Gates established Pivotal Ventures four years ago to focus on issues including gender equality and empowering women. Her book, “The Moment of Lift,” documented the need to remove barriers for women, with the goal of helping not just women but society as a whole.

In the announcement this morning, Gates cited three priorities for the funds: 1) “dismantling the barriers to women’s professional advancement;” 2) “fast-tracking women in sectors with outsized impact on our society—like technology, media, and public office; and 3) “mobilizing shareholders, consumers, and employees to amplify external pressure on companies and organizations in need of reform.”

She wrote, “I want to see more women in the position to make decisions, control resources, and shape policies and perspectives. I believe that women’s potential is worth investing in—and the people and organizations working to improve women’s lives are, too.”

Gates gave more insights into her approach in a Harvard Business Review piece last month, “Gender Equality Is Within Our Reach.

“I believe our goal should be to expand women’s power and influence in society. I think of power and influence as the ability to make decisions, control resources, and shape perspectives. It is something women exercise in their homes, in their workplaces, and in their communities. I recognize that “power and influence” are not words we have historically associated with women — nor are they words that all women associate with themselves. I also acknowledge that because of my family’s wealth, I have access to certain kinds of power and influence that very few people do. Still, I use these words, imperfect and imprecise though they are, because they are the best way I know to describe what men in this country — in particular, white men — have long had that women have not.”

Continue on to Geekwire to read the complete article.

Why Jennifer Aniston ‘absolutely’ will not try online dating
LinkedIn
Jennifer Aniston revealed why she won't try dating apps.

Jennifer Aniston is still looking for love — but she refuses to find it online. The “Friends” alum, 52, said in an interview published on Wednesday that she “absolutely” will not try dating apps to find a new partner. “Absolutely no,” she told People. “I’m going to just stick to the normal ways of dating. Having someone ask you out. That’s the way I would prefer it.” Although she’s still looking for a “fantastic partner,” the twice-divorced “Morning Show” star isn’t certain about making any relationship legally binding again.

“Oh, God, I don’t know,” she said. “It’s not on my radar. I’m interested in finding a fantastic partner and just living an enjoyable life and having fun with one another. That’s all we should hope for. It doesn’t have to be etched in stone in legal documents.”

Aniston was married to Brad Pitt from 2000 to 2005 and Justin Theroux from 2015 to 2017. She is still friends with both of her exes.

“I would say we’ve remained friends,” Theroux, 49, said in his Esquire cover story published in April. “We don’t talk every day, but we call each other. We FaceTime. We text.”

Denying that they had a “dramatic split,” he added, “I’m sincere when I say that I cherish our friendship.”

Click here to read the full article on Page Six.

Victoria’s Secret Swaps Angels for ‘What Women Want.’ Will They Buy It?
LinkedIn
The actor Priyanka Chopra Jonas is part of the rebrand for victoria's secret

Sapna Maheshwari and , New York Times

The Victoria’s Secret Angels, those avatars of Barbie bodies and playboy reverie, are gone. Their wings, fluttery confections of rhinestones and feathers that could weigh almost 30 pounds, are gathering dust in storage. The “Fantasy Bra,” dangling real diamonds and other gems, is no more.

In their place are seven women famous for their achievements and not their proportions. They include Megan Rapinoe, the 35-year-old pink-haired soccer star and gender equity campaigner; Eileen Gu, a 17-year-old Chinese American freestyle skier and soon-to-be Olympian; the 29-year-old biracial model and inclusivity advocate Paloma Elsesser, who was the rare size 14 woman on the cover of Vogue; and Priyanka Chopra Jonas, a 38-year-old Indian actor and tech investor.

They will be spearheading what may be the most extreme and unabashed attempt at a brand turnaround in recent memory: an effort to redefine the version of “sexy” that Victoria’s Secret represents (and sells) to the masses. For decades, Victoria’s Secret’s scantily clad supermodels with Jessica Rabbit curves epitomized a certain widely accepted stereotype of femininity. Now, with that kind of imagery out of step with the broader culture and Victoria’s Secret facing increased competition and internal turmoil, the company wants to become, its chief executive said, a leading global “advocate” for female empowerment.

Will women buy it? An upcoming spinoff, more than $5 billion in annual sales, and 32,000 jobs in a global retail network that includes roughly 1,400 stores are riding on the answer.

It is a stark change for a brand that not only long sold lingerie in the guise of male fantasy, but has also been scrutinized heavily in recent years for its owner’s relationship with the sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and revelations about a misogynistic corporate culture that trafficked in sexism, sizeism and ageism.

“When the world was changing, we were too slow to respond,” said Martin Waters, the former head of Victoria’s Secret’s international business who was appointed chief executive of the brand in February. “We needed to stop being about what men want and to be about what women want.”

The seven women, who form a group called the VS Collective, will alternately advise the brand, appear in ads and promote Victoria’s Secret on Instagram. They are joining a company that has an entirely new executive team and is forming a board of directors in which all but one seat will be occupied by women.

Rarely has a company so dominant in its sector been exposed as trailing so far behind the culture as Victoria’s Secret was in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

It was, Ms. Rapinoe said bluntly, “patriarchal, sexist, viewing not just what it meant to be sexy but what the clothes were trying to accomplish through a male lens and through what men desired. And it was very much marketed toward younger women.” That message, she said, was “really harmful.”

Click here to read the full article on the New York Times.

TOKYO 2020 TRANSGENDER WEIGHTLIFTER TO COMPETE IN GAMES … On New Zealand Women’s Team
LinkedIn
Laurel Hubbard lifting weights in a competition

By TMZ

For the very first time, a transgender athlete will compete in the summer Olympics … and shocker, there’s already controversy. 43-year-old Laurel Hubbard — who transitioned from male to female in 2013 — has been selected to the New Zealand women’s weightlifting team to compete in the women’s 87-kilogram division. The issue?? Hubbard competed in men’s weightlifting competitions before she transitioned — and some critics are already blasting the situation as unfair to other athletes.

But, the International Olympic Committee has specific guidelines for transgender athletes to compete — testosterone levels must be below a certain level — and Hubbard has met the criteria since 2015. In other words, she’s good to go!! The CEO of the New Zealand Olympic Committee, Kereyn Smith, issued a statement Monday supporting Hubbard.

“We acknowledge that gender identity in sport is a highly sensitive and complex issue requiring a balance between human rights and fairness on the field of play,” Smith said. “As the New Zealand Team, we have a strong culture of manaaki and inclusion and respect for all. We are committed to supporting all eligible New Zealand athletes and ensuring their mental and physical wellbeing, along with their high-performance needs, while preparing for and competing at the Olympic Games are met.”

Not everyone feels that way … back in May, Belgian weightlifter Anna Vanbellinghen reportedly called Hubbard’s qualifying situation “unfair” and a “bad joke.”

Hubbard, though, wasn’t letting the disapproval get in the way of her feat Monday … saying, “I am grateful and humbled by the kindness and support that has been given to me by so many New Zealanders.”

“The last 18 months has shown us all that there is strength in kinship, in community, and in working together towards a common purpose. The mana of the silver fern comes from all of you and I will wear it with pride.”

Click here to read the full article on TMZ.

RuPaul’s Drag Race star Laganja Estranja comes out as trans: ‘I feel so beautiful’
LinkedIn
'RuPaul's Drag Race' queen Laganja Estranja comes out as trans in EW's exclusive interview.

By Joey Nolfi, EW

RuPaul’s Drag Race legend Laganja Estranja is chassé-ing into a new chapter of her life as an out, proud trans woman. “There are so many other women around me who’ve inspired me to come forward today, and it’s because of their fight and their struggle that I’m able to really do this and say that I’m nervous, but I’m not scared,” the 32-year-old recording artist and cannabis activist exclusively reveals to EW. “I’m not going to live my life in fear anymore.” Estranja says after “presenting as female for the last 10 years” as a drag performer, she eased into her identity while on the stage in a way that “made it more explainable to the masses,” but, in 2021, she’s living her truth for one person only: Herself.

“I do want to be able to express this at all times,” she continues. “I just got my haircut – a very feminine cut – and in one week already, my life has changed. I’m able to come off stage and take my makeup off and still see a beautiful woman in the mirror. It’s powerful.”

The Texas native, who rose to prominence thanks to her flamboyant personality on season 6 of RuPaul’s Drag Race in 2014, says she came out to her “incredibly supportive” family one week ago, but has been “comfortably, fully committing” to who she is as a trans woman among her inner circle for one year, after previously revealing her truth to friends on her birthday in 2020.

Without a prompt, she volunteers information about her physical transformation, stressing that it’s important for her to highlight this part of her story – which involves deliberately coming out before beginning hormone therapy – to emphasize that no one’s transition is the same, and that everyone deserves the space, time, and love to come out on their own terms, at any age, and at any physical point on their personal trajectory.

“That will come,” she says, later explaining: “Glam doesn’t make you a woman; it makes you a woman to people outside, in the world…. gender is performative, and what we wear is an extension of what we feel on the inside. That’s the real truth here: once this is out and once people know, I’m going to be more free to explore what it means to be a woman on the inside. The dressing part? I’ve got it down, but that’s not what makes you a woman.”

For Estranja, getting to a place of comfort took time. She says she first told others she was nonbinary as both an easing-in for her and those around her, because she often felt trapped by the pressure to fit into the constraints of constructed gender.

“People think that when you’re trans that you’ve wanted to be a girl your whole life; yes, that’s partly true [for me], but it’s also true that I’ve wanted to be male my whole life to fit into what society deems as normal,” she explains. “But, that isn’t my truth, and I’m daring to take this on. I tried to be male and be in-between and nonbinary. The truth is I’m a feminine entity and I can live this life.”

Still, her transition will be an ode to the person that laid the foundation for this moment over the last three decades of life. She doesn’t plan to change her drag name or her birth name; she’ll still perform as Laganja Estranja, and go by Jay among those closest to her, so she feels like she’s “not turning [her] back on” the bricks that built the woman she is today – many of which, she reveals, came to her in unexpected ways, like the time she remembers feeling her natural hair growing long enough to touch her neck for the first time last year, when the global pandemic interrupted her regular two-week haircut schedule.

“When my real hair started growing, I remember it touching the back of my neck, and that’s funny, because wigs have touched the back of my neck forever, but it was my real hair; my real truth was physically touching me in a way,” she recalls.

She shares that something as simple as performing drag with her natural hair versus a wig has drawn criticism from cis members of the community in the past – something that’s “not fair,” though she’s prepared herself for it by watching her Drag Race season 6 castmate and close friend, Gia Gunn, while the pair lived together.

“I feel blessed to have had that experience. Our transitions are different and will manifest in different ways, but it was so incredible to see someone live their truth and to be happy,” says Estranja, who joins past Drag Race contestants like Gunn, Gottmik, Peppermint, Kylie Sonique Love, Jiggly Caliente, and Carmen Carrera, among others, who’ve come out either before, during, or after their time on the show.

“I’m so thankful that Gia didn’t push me and has allowed me to take my time,” Estranja says. “Of course she’s encouraged me. From day one when we met, she was like, ‘Oh honey, you’re a woman!’ She’s known longer than I have!”

Click here to read the full article on EW.

Meet the first LGBTQ lead of a Bachelor franchise
LinkedIn
Bachelor lead wearing a red dress while holding red roses

By Anagha Srikanth, The Hill

Not to be outdone by their U.S. relatives, “The Bachelorette Australia” cast Brooke Blurton, the first openly LGBTQ and Indigenous lead in franchise history, for the upcoming season of the reality dating show. Blurton, who is bisexual, will be the franchise’s first openly LGBTQ lead, with the caveat that former bachelor Colton Underwood, who first appeared in season 14 of “The Bachelorette” in 2018 before going on to star in his own season, came out as gay after the season ended. She won’t be the franchise’s first LGBTQ couple — that honor goes to Demi Burnett, who appeared in Underwood’s season and “Bachelor in Paradise,” and Kristian Haggerty — but her historic casting is notable in a series not known for its diversity. As a Noongar-Yamatji woman, Blurton also represents her country’s aboriginal peoples, another first on the show.

LGBTQ relationships are becoming more common on reality dating shows, starting with MTV’s eighth season of “Are You The One?” but representation remains limited. Blurton, who was openly bisexual during her first appearance in the 2017 season of “The Bachelor,” has used her online platform to raise awareness and educate followers on LGBTQ issues.

“I don’t take this representation lightly,” she said on an Instagram story. “I am taking it with Pride and absolute integrity, but also be kind to me. At the end of the day I am also just Brooke. I represent a lot, but I am just a Carnarvon girl who came from nothing who desires and wants the love and connection she deserves.”

Click here to read the full article on The Hill.

Lady Gaga Awarded Key to West Hollywood as Mayor Declares “Born This Way Day”
LinkedIn
Lady Gaga at declaration of “Born This Way Day” in West Hollywood

Lady Gaga’s album Born This Way celebrated its 10th anniversary on Sunday, and to mark the occasion, the City of West Hollywood officially declared May 23 “Born This Way Day.” Gaga was also awarded the key to the city by West Hollywood Mayor Lindsey P. Horvath. “Thank you for encouraging us to love ourselves and be proud,” Horvath told Gaga. A street painting featuring the album’s title was also unveiled to kick-off West Hollywood’s Pride season.

“Born This Way, my song and album, were inspired by Carl Bean, a gay black religious activist who preached, sung and wrote about being ‘Born This Way.‘ Notably, his early work was in 1975, 11 years before I was born,” Gaga wrote. “Thank you for decades of relentless love, bravery, and a reason to sing. So we can all feel joy, because we deserve joy. Because we reserve the right to inspire tolerance, acceptance, and freedom for all.”

“Thank you for decades of relentless love, bravery, and a reason to sing. So we can all feel joy, because we deserve joy. Because we deserve the right to inspire tolerance, acceptance, and freedom for all.” – Lady Gaga Instagram

Click here to read the full article on Pitchfork.

Demi Lovato Comes Out As Nonbinary
LinkedIn
Demi Lovato performs during a premiere event for their documentary wearing an all pink button up in front of a purple background

By Elizabeth Blair, NPR

Demi Lovato, two-time Grammy nominee and former Disney star, has come out as nonbinary. In the first episode of their new podcast 4D, Lovato says, “Over the past year and a half, I’ve been doing some healing and self-reflective work. And through this work, I’ve had the revelation that I identify as nonbinary. With that said, I’ll be officially changing my pronouns to they/them.”

Lovato said the change “best represents the fluidity I feel in my gender expression and allows me to feel most authentic and true to the person I both know I am and am still discovering.”

In a conversation with gender-nonconforming author, performer and speaker Alok Vaid-Menon, the episode covers a range of topics related to both Lovato’s personal journey as well as general misconceptions about gender fluidity. Lovato says, “It would mean the world if people could start identifying me as they/them. I will also be accepting if people slip and say her/she because I know that being in my position, it’s going to take a while for people to get used to.”

Addressing their overdose in 2018, Lovato believes it happened because “I was ignoring my truth, and I was suppressing who I really am in order to please stylists, or team members, or this or that, or even fans that wanted me to be the sexy, feminine pop star in the, in the leotard and look a certain way.”

Click here to read the full article on NPR.

Just In Time For Mother’s Day, OpenTable Reveals its 2021 List of the 100 Best Brunch Restaurants in America
LinkedIn
A group of people is dining in a elegance restaurant or hotel

OpenTable, the world’s leading provider of online restaurant reservations and part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), recently released its annual list of the 100 Best Brunch Restaurants in America for 2021.

As restaurant restrictions ease in the U.S, a recent OpenTable survey* shows 33% of Americans haven’t had an extended family gathering in more than a year, and OpenTable data shows Mother’s Day reservations are up 64% compared to 2019 (pre-pandemic levels) – a clear sign families are eager to reunite and celebrate with their loved ones this Mother’s Day.

“This Mother’s Day will be more meaningful than as it may be one of the first occasions that families are reuniting around the table since the beginning of the pandemic,” said Debby Soo, CEO at OpenTable. “We wanted to make sure diners had the best brunch restaurants at their fingertips as they make plans to celebrate this special holiday with their loved ones.”

Featuring restaurants coast-to-coast, across 24 states and Washington, D.C., the list is a comprehensive look at the best brunch spots in the country. The Best Brunch Restaurants in America list was culled from more than 12 million verified diner reviews of over 30,000 restaurants in 50 states and Washington, D.C. California is the most recognized state on the list with 17 restaurants honored, followed by Florida and Pennsylvania with eight winning restaurants. Illinois and Texas each boast seven winning restaurants and Georgia, Minnesota and Nevada claim six honorees.

From restaurants with just the right ambiance for both indoor and outdoor dining, like Foreign Cinema in San Francisco, to sweet and savory favorites at Yardbird Southern Table and Bar in Las Vegas and Miami to local big-city favorites like Perch in Los Angeles, the Best Brunch list features a wide variety of options for any type of menu and environment diners are looking for.

The annual list comes on the heels of OpenTable’s national “Frame the Feeling” promotion, an initiative to help families capture the moment as they reconnect this Mother’s Day. The campaign offers professional family photos for all reservations made on Mother’s Day at 14 select restaurants nationwide.

The 100 Best Brunch Restaurants in America for 2021 according to OpenTable diners, are as follows (listed alphabetically):

  1. a’Bouzy – Houston, TX
  2. Ambar Capitol Hill – Washington D.C.
  3. Anis Cafe and Bistro – Atlanta, GA
  4. Atchafalaya Restaurant – New Orleans, LA
  5. The Aviary Restaurant & Bar – Swansea, MA
  6. Baldamar – Roseville, MN
  7. The Barn at Rocky Fork Creek – Gahanna, OH
  8. Beachcomber Cafe – Crystal Cove – Newport Coast, CA
  9. Beetlecat – Atlanta, GA
  10. Bistro at Edgewood Tahoe – Stateline, NV
  11. The Bistro at LaBelle Winery Amherst – Amherst, NH
  12. Bistro L’Hermitage – Woodbridge, VA
  13. Bistro Niko – Atlanta, GA
  14. Black Bass Hotel – Lumberville, PA
  15. Blue Bell Inn – Blue Bell, PA
  16. The Boathouse – Lake Buena Vista, FL
  17. Brennan’s – Multiple Locations
  18. Bristol Seafood Grill – Leawood, KS
  19. Brix – Napa, CA
  20. Buttermilk & Bourbon – Boston, MA
  21. Cabra – Chicago, IL
  22. Café Ba-Ba-Reeba – Chicago, IL
  23. Cafe Monte – Charlotte, NC
  24. Canoe – Atlanta, GA
  25. Cap City Fine Diner & Bar – Grandview – Columbus, OH
  26. Cappy’s Restaurant – San Antonio, TX
  27. Carson’s Food & Drink – Lexington, KY
  28. Cheever’s Cafe – Oklahoma City, OK
  29. Chianti Grill – Burnsville, MN
  30. The Dandelion – Philadelphia, PA
  31. Del Vino Vineyards – Northport, NY
  32. Duke’s La Jolla – San Diego, CA
  33. Eiffel Tower – Las Vegas, NV
  34. Eight4Nine – Palm Springs, CA
  35. Fabian’s Italian Bistro – Fair Oaks, CA
  36. Farmhouse at Rogers Gardens – Corona Del Mar, CA
  37. Flight Restaurant & Wine Bar – Memphis, TN
  38. The Food Market – Baltimore, MD
  39. Foreign Cinema – San Francisco, CA
  40. The Front Yard – North Hollywood, CA
  41. Good Day Cafe – Golden Valley, MN
  42. Grace’s – Houston, TX
  43. Great Maple – San Diego, CA
  44. Green Valley Grill – Greensboro, NC
  45. The Hampton Social – Multiple Locations
  46. Happy Camper – Denver, CO
  47. Haywire – Plano, TX
  48. Hazelwood – Bloomington, MN
  49. Hell’s Kitchen – Caesars Palace – Las Vegas, NV
  50. The Henry – Phoenix, AZ
  51. Honey Salt – Las Vegas, NV
  52. JOLO Winery & Vineyards – Pilot Mountain, NC
  53. La Merise – Denver, CO
  54. Lake Elmo Inn – Lake Elmo, MN
  55. Latitudes on Sunset Key – Key West, FL
  56. Le Diplomate – Washington D.C.
  57. Le Yaca – Williamsburg, VA
  58. Ledger Restaurant & Bar – Salem, MA
  59. Lindey’s – Columbus, OH
  60. Little Goat – Chicago, IL
  61. Lon’s at The Hermosa – Paradise Valley, AZ
  62. The Love – Philadelphia, PA
  63. Madison – San Diego, CA
  64. Meson Sabika – Naperville, IL
  65. Mon Ami Gabi – Las Vegas, NV
  66. Murphy’s – Atlanta, GA
  67. OBC Kitchen – Lexington, KY
  68. Old Ebbitt Grill – Washington D.C.
  69. Ouisie’s Table – Houston, TX
  70. Pacific Coast Grill – Cardiff By the Sea, CA
  71. Parc – Philadelphia, PA
  72. Perch – Los Angeles, CA
  73. Pier W – Cleveland, OH
  74. Poor Calvin’s – Atlanta, GA
  75. Preserved Restaurant – St. Augustine, FL
  76. Prime: An American Kitchen & Bar – Huntington, NY
  77. Print Works Bistro – Greensboro, NC
  78. RH – Multiple Locations
  79. The Rooftop by JG – Beverly Hills, CA
  80. Rooney’s Oceanfront Restaurant – Long Branch, NJ
  81. Root Down – Denver, CO
  82. Seed Kitchen + Bar – Marietta, GA
  83. Sheldon Inn Restaurant & Bar – Elk Grove, CA
  84. Simon Pearce Restaurant – Quechee, VT
  85. Soby’s – Greenville, SC
  86. Summer House Santa Monica – Chicago, IL
  87. Sunset Terrace – Omni Grove Park Inn – Asheville, NC
  88. Talula’s Garden – Philadelphia, PA
  89. The Tap Room at Dubsdread – Orlando, FL
  90. Tavern 4 & 5 – Eden Prairie, MN
  91. Terrain Cafe – Glen Mills, PA
  92. The Tropicale – Palm Springs, CA
  93. Ulele – Tampa, FL
  94. Union and Finch – Allentown, PA
  95. Vintage – Vail, CO
  96. WeHo Bistro – West Hollywood, CA
  97. Whiskey Cake – Plano, TX
  98. Wine Bar George – A Restaurant & Bar – Orlando, FL
  99. Yardbird Southern Table & Bar – Multiple Locations
  100. Zaytinya – Washington D.C.

The complete list may also be viewed at: https://pages.email.opentable.com/Top100BrunchUS. To learn more about the “Frame the Feeling” promotion, visit the OpenTable blog at http://blog.opentable.com/2021/mothers-day-2021-frame-the-feeling.

OT Best Brunch Methodology:
The 100 Best Brunch Restaurants list is generated solely from diner reviews collected between from April 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021. All restaurants with a minimum rating and number of qualifying reviews were included for consideration. Qualifying restaurants were then scored and sorted according to the sum of tags for which “brunch” was selected as a special feature.

*OT Survey Methodology:
OpenTable partnered with YouGov on April 19 – 20, 2021 to survey 1,326 adults (aged 18+) online within the U.S. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all U.S. adults (aged 18+).

About OpenTable
OpenTable, part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), powers reservations for the hospitality industry. OpenTable’s software seats more than 1 billion people per year and helps more than 60,000 restaurants, bars, wineries and other venues attract guests, manage capacity, improve operations and maximize revenue.

Stacey Abrams is Re-Releasing Three of Her Romance Novels
LinkedIn
Stacey Abrams standing in front of a microphone stand while smiling away from the camera.

By , Vulture

Get ready to swoon. Berkley, a Penguin Random House imprint, is rereleasing three Stacey Abrams romantic suspense novels that have been out of print for many years. Originally published under the pen name Selena Montgomery, Rules of Engagement, The Art of Desire, and Power of Persuasion will be out in hardcover and audio in 2022. According to a release, each of these novels, which were her first published books, features “international espionage, page-turning action, a core love story, Black heroines, and a diverse cast of characters.”

While the Democratic political leader and Team Spike fan has since written bestsellers on topics from voter suppression to leadership, she has never shied away from her romance-novelist roots. “As my first novels, they remain incredibly special to me,” Abrams said in a statement. “The characters and their adventures are what I’d wished to read as a young Black woman — stories that showcase women of color as nuanced, determined, and exciting. As Selena and as Stacey, I am proud to be a part of the romance-writing community and excited that Berkley is reintroducing these stories for new readers and faithful fans.”

Click here to read the full article on Vulture.

Vanessa Bryant launches clothing line in honor of late daughter Gianna
LinkedIn
Vanessa Bryant and her eldest daughter wearing the tie dye sweat suit set for MAMBACITA clothing while standing in front of an all black background

By Alexander Kacala, Today

Today would have been Gianna Bryant’s 15th birthday. Last January, the daughter of late basketball legend Kobe Bryant, died alongside her father and seven others in a helicopter crash.

Now, just over fifteen months since the crash, Vanessa Bryant, is working to further her husband and daughter’s legacies with her sports foundation, Mamba and Mambacita, that aims to empower young girls who are athletes.

A new Mamba and Mambacita apparel line in honor of Gianna and Kobe Bryant is being launched Saturday, and the 38-year-old philanthropist shared some sweet family photos with the announcement.

In one photo, the mother poses with her oldest daughter Natalia, 18, with both looking strong and resilient in matching black-and-white tie-dyed sweatsuits. Mambacita is written across the front of the outfits in bold red lettering, and a no. 2, in honor of Gianna’s basketball jersey number, is printed inside a red heart drawing on the front of each suit’s left pant leg as well.

In another photo also shared on Instagram, 4-year-old Bianka Bryant is captured mid-jump. She’s also sporting an adorable smile reminiscent of her late dad’s big grin. Her sweatsuit is white with a lavender tie-dye print and pink Mambacita lettering.

All the proceeds from sales of the Mambacita apparel will be donated to Mamba and Mambacita.

Bryant credits her late husband and daughter for giving her the strength to do all the work she is doing nowadays. “I guess the best way to describe it is that Kobe and Gigi motivate me to keep going,” she told People magazine back in March. “They inspire me to try harder and be better every day. Their love is unconditional and they motivate me in so many different ways.”

Click here to read the full article on Today.

Air Force Civilian Service

Air Force Civilian Service

Lumen

Lumen

Verizon AD

Verizon

American Family Insurance

American Family Insurance

Statement

#Stopthehate

Upcoming Events

  1. Women in Federal Law Enforcement (WIFLE)
    August 16, 2021 - August 19, 2021
  2. WIFLE Annual Leadership Training
    August 16, 2021 - August 19, 2021
  3. WiCyS 2021 Conference
    September 8, 2021 - September 10, 2021
  4. 2021 ERG & Council Conference
    September 15, 2021 - September 17, 2021
  5. Wonder Women Tech
    October 26, 2021 - October 29, 2021

Upcoming Events

  1. Women in Federal Law Enforcement (WIFLE)
    August 16, 2021 - August 19, 2021
  2. WIFLE Annual Leadership Training
    August 16, 2021 - August 19, 2021
  3. WiCyS 2021 Conference
    September 8, 2021 - September 10, 2021
  4. 2021 ERG & Council Conference
    September 15, 2021 - September 17, 2021
  5. Wonder Women Tech
    October 26, 2021 - October 29, 2021