Macon Magazine

August/September 2020

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Page 39 of 99

TELL US ABOUT YOUR ACTIVITIES IN THE COMMUNITY, ESPECIALLY WHAT YOU'RE MOST EXCITED ABOUT. I am an active volunteer in the Macon and Middle Georgia community, working with groups that provide access to opportunities and resources for youths and adults. These groups have included Streets to Success, the Renaissance Mentoring Team, Delta G.E.M.S., Embodi and Real I.M.P.A.C.T. Center Inc., Our Girls Rock Too-Statesboro, I Am Developing Co., National Panhellenic Council- Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Mercer University Upward Bound/ Educational Opportunity Center- TRiO Programs and the Rosa Jackson Community Center. I am most excited about future collaborations in the city. I collaborated with a local nonprofit, I Am Developing Co., and AmStar Theatres to take more than 100 adults and children to see "Black Panther" and more than 40 young girls view "A Wrinkle in Time." I also traveled to Cape Town, South Africa, and served as a volunteer to repaint and retool a local elementary school. I believe serving one's community with your time, talents and treasures is one of the greatest gifts you can share. WHAT ARE YOU PERSONALLY COMMITTED TO ACCOMPLISHING IN MACON AND WHY? My life's mission is to impact as many young adults and children to achieve post-secondary and career success. Therefore, I work with programs that closely align with those values. One project that I am extremely excited about is our 2019 Leadership Macon Project at the Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park. The Ocmulgee Mounds Education Project will build an outdoor classroom for the thousands of school-aged children who visit the park each year through school field trips or family outings. Also, we will be providing mobile educational trunks for S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) instruction for students K-16. Each trunk is comprised of a variety of education lesson plans and hands-on activities for all ages. Each activity reflects an aspect of S.T.E.A.M. education as well as the integration of historical narratives from the Mounds. This project will support the education of our local students and provide an enhanced experience for the visitors who come to our area. WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED DURING THESE PANDEMIC TIMES? I have learned that we as a human race have a very long journey ahead of us as we explore our intersectionality, privilege, guilt, shame and bias. I believe that not only America, but the world, is suffering from two pandemics: Racism and COVID-19. As a society, we have to acknowledge, address and atone for the oppression and discriminatory practices, policies and procedures in our society before we can move toward reconciliation and restorative justice. These two pandemics have only exacerbated the ills in our society. We must address them today in an intentional and strategic human rights and civil rights movement, not just as a moment in history. WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT MACON TO PEOPLE WHO DON'T LIVE HERE, WHAT DO YOU TELL THEM? Macon is the "Song and Soul of the South." She is a city steeped in tradition, song and soul. We are home to talented musicians and artists including Little Richard, Otis Redding and the Allman Brothers. We celebrate culture through a myriad of international festivals including the Pan African Festival, Cherry Blossom Festival and the Ocmulgee Indian Celebration. We have great sports teams including the Macon Mayhem, Knights, Bacon and Georgia Doom. We are a place for higher learning, being home to over five colleges and universities including Mercer University, Georgia Military College, Central Georgia Technical College, Wesleyan College and Middle Georgia State University. We are Georgia's "Little Hollywood," having had movies and shows filmed in Macon including Emmy-nominated "The Watchmen," "Zombieland" and "42," just to name a few. Lastly, Macon embraces transplants like myself with love – so come join us. WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A GOOD LEADER? I believe in three models of leadership: servant leadership, transformational leadership and inclusive leadership. All three models allow for the leader and the team to be catalysts for change. A transformational leader is a person who encourages, inspires and motivates individuals to innovate and create change that will help grow and shape the future success of their lives and communities. The servant-leader is a servant first. I believe that for us to impact a change we must first serve, learn and listen to others. An inclusive leader utilizes a diverse group of traits and individuals to shift culture through collaboration, courage, cognizance and cultural intelligence. WHAT ARE THREE QUALITIES THAT GOT YOU WHERE YOU ARE TODAY? The three qualities that have sustained and propelled me to the person I am today are persistence, self- efficacy and adaptability. "MY VISION FOR OUR COMMUNITY IS CONTINUED GROWTH, DEVELOPMENT, INCLUSION AND APPRECIATION FOR OTHERS." -ANSLEY BOOKER 38 | AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2020

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