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Author Archives: Naomi Bonman

Vocalist, Songwriter Lanita Smith Encourages Us to Take Leaps Within Love

By Naomi K. Bonman

Love. We all want it. We all crave for it. We all long for it. Some of the best songs revolve around ‘love’. Award winning songwriter Lanita Smith recently blew the audience away at the Beale Street Music Festival in Tennessee while performing her latest single, “Love Can Do.” She encourages us to love and to take leaps within love. 

Her latest single is encouraged by the various hardships that we face today and her video also reflects that. Shot at DreamMagic Studios in Canoga Park, the video centers around the importance of unmasking our insecurities and being the change that brings people together in love. Images of various cultures, races, and even our fellow military are displayed in the warm and energetic piece of work, that shows you why we should love our differences not judge them.

“Love Can Do” is a prelude to her upcoming album entitled Remember Me, set to release late summer 2017. I recently caught up with Ms. Smith in our “Purposely Awakened” radio show where she chatted on her latest single, working alongside Los Angeles choreographer Liezel Marie, and her upcoming projects.

Check out the interview below: 


WWAM Gears Up to ‘Save Our Sons’ at Annual Juneteenth Celebration

SAN BERNARDINO, CA- ‘Saving Our Sons’ is the theme for this year’s annual Juneteenth celebration presented by Willing Winn Associates and Mission (WWAM) Inc. After two successful events in previous years, WWAM was called to go even bigger for 2017! This year’s celebration will be kicking off at San Bernardino Valley College in The Greek Theatre on Saturday, June 24 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. To coincide with the theme and location, the afternoon will consist of a lineup that the community cannot miss. Come get educated, enlightened, and of course be entertained.

“They have matters that need to be fixed that they don’t know how to fix themselves,” Dr. Deborah Winn, Founder of WWAM Inc., stated on why she chose this year’s theme.

The issues that our Black men and women, are going through have been plaguing the community for years and when things seem to get better, something else occurs that brings us back. From the shootings to the way we are raising our children, it is as if we are becoming numb to what love is.

“When we love ourselves, we won’t take our lives or anyone else’s lives,” Winn said. “We need to start being responsible and standing in harmony. With effort, we have the remedy; it starts at home.”

This issue along with others, as well as a history of what Juneteenth is will all be introduced and explained throughout the afternoon. The lineup of speakers who will be presenting them include: Dr. Margaret Hill, Professor James Smith, Mr. Thomas “TJ” Loftin, Oliver Petty, and Sharon Smith-Knight. Pastor Dr. Joshua Beckley, of Ecclesia Christian Church, will be opening the event up in prayer. Comedian Lamont Bonman a.k.a. Rev. Monty B. will be the Master of Ceremonies.

The day will be filled with not just education and enlightenment, but there will also be plenty of entertainment. There will be performances by JReal da Realest, Wyel Legend, Lex Lane, DJ Worldclass, Ciotti and Jenice Michelle, Cthree, Royal Believer, Adoration, and more.

In addition to the speakers and entertainment, the community will be able to visit several vendor booths which will include clothing, jewelry, food, children’s activities, voter registration, expungement services, and much more.  This is a FREE event. Free hot dogs and snacks will be served for children 13 and under. There will also be a special grocery giveaway to the first 350 families. Each family MUST have ID.

This event couldn’t have been made possible without the help of the following sponsors: Phoenicia, I.S.A.H. (It Starts At Home), Los Angeles Lakers, WWAM Inc., Community Action Partnership, KOHL’S, S.O.S. (Saving Our Sons), Mary Stewart’s Southern Soul Food, Southern California Edison, Target, Wal-Mart, San Bernardino Unified School District, San Manual Band of Mission Indians, and San Bernardino Valley College.

For more information please call (909) 889-9509 or visit www.wwaminc.org. The college is located at 701 S. Mt Vernon Avenue in San Bernardino.

Midwest Millennial Entrepreneur Launches “The Love Project” Helping Others Escape Depression, Bringing Incentive to Southern California

By Naomi K. Bonman

If you’ve been following the movement for a while, then you probably remember Gerald D. Thomas, a young, successful millennial who is making an impact in his community. For those that are unfamiliar with Mr. Thomas, he is the founder of the marketing and public relations agency, The GDT Agency. He recently launched a new campaign entitled, “The Love Project,” and I recently caught up with him again where he chatted about his inspiration behind starting the project and where he plans on taking it. 

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