Rodney Woods is Founder, Managing Partner, Chief Executive Officer and Board Chairman of Playbook Investors Network (PIN). PIN is a web-based business capital and educational platform created to foster the engagement of Minority, Women-Owned, LGBTQ communities, government and Veterans with Institutional and private investors. PIN’s Relationship Managers assesses each supplier and conducts their due diligence to identify the firm’s operations and current financial position. Based upon the evaluation, PIN then introduces third-party financial solutions.
Prior to his current role, he decided to become an entrepreneur by starting his own business, Diversity in Promotions, Inc., a Dallas-based strategic marketing firm specializing in minority/women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) business development, diversity program management, outreach and contract compliance with a primary focus on diversity procurement & supplier diversity initiatives to help strengthen relationships between M/WBEs and corporations. His portfolio includes clients such as Toyota, Volkswagen, Victoria’s Secret PINK, Adidas, Converse, General Motors, and Walgreens.
While performing various initiatives for DIP's clients, he quickly understood the need for capital for the thousands of M/WBEs serving as Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers to Fortune 500 companies. Thus, Playbook Investors Network (PIN), a web-based educational platform designed to bridge the gap between M/WBE, LGBT, Veteran-Owned, institutional and private investors, was established.
Rodney has also had a successful career in law enforcement that span over 20 years with the Dallas Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He is a native of Nashville, TN where he graduated with a B.A. in Sociology from Paine College in Augusta, GA. He also attended Tucks School of Business at Dartmouth. Woods also sits on several boards with athletes, entertainers, corporations, and schools.
Tracy McGrady(T-Mac), PIN's Co-Founder and Managing Partner, is an American retired professional basketball player who is best known for his career in the National Basketball Association (NBA), where he played as both a shooting guard and small forward. McGrady is a seven-time NBA All-Star, seven-time All-NBA selection, two-time NBA scoring champion, and one-time winner of the NBA Most Improved Player Award. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2017.
McGrady entered the NBA straight out of high school and was selected as the ninth overall pick by the Toronto Raptors in the 1997 NBA draft. Beginning his career as a low-minute player, he gradually improved his role with the team, eventually forming an exciting duo with his cousin Vince Carter. In 2000, he left the Raptors for the Orlando Magic, where he became one of the league's most prolific scorers and a candidate for the NBA Most Valuable Player Award. In 2004, he was traded to the Houston Rockets, where he paired with center Yao Ming to help the Rockets become a perennial playoff team. His final seasons in the NBA were plagued by injuries, and he retired in 2013 following a brief stint with the Qingdao DoubleStar Eagles of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) and the San Antonio Spurs.
Since retiring, McGrady has worked as a basketball analyst for ESPN and he has been appointed special assistant to the Orlando Magic’s CEO. In addition to being a Managing Partner to Playbook Investors Network, where he is committed to helping minority businesses gain access to capital, he is also Partner and Managing Director with Diversity In Promotions (DIP), a Dallas-based strategic marketing firm specializing in minority/women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) business development, diversity program management, outreach and contract compliance with primary focus on diversity procurement & supplier diversity initiatives to help strengthen relationships between M/WBEs, corporations, athletes, entertainers and private investors. McGrady has other business ventures pending and enjoys seeking new opportunities.
Despite his success, McGrady has not limited himself to working solely on the court. He is deeply involved in his foundation, The Tracy and CleRenda McGrady Foundation, and is very active in the Florida and Houston communities. He has taken numerous trips to Asia, to serve as an ambassador for basketball and has become involved in the Enough Project to help with the crisis in Darfur. McGrady is committed to using the Foundation to enhance the lives of children through empowering and encouraging them through literacy and education.
Tracy and his wife CleRenda have four children, daughters Layla and Laycee, and sons Laymen and Layden.
Playbook Investors Network is proud to have Shaun Hawkins as Managing Partner. He consults extensively on management, operational, strategic challenges, and financial issues. He uses a hands-on approach to support clients and focuses most of his time on proactive planning, analysis and client communication. He is a dedicated professional who is focused on increasing enterprise value.
Hawkins is also the founder of the ProSyte Companies, a diversified holding entity investing in businesses and real estate in the US and Europe. Investments include: Auxigen Health, BioPharm Nutraceuticals and Carrick Therapeutics.
From 2012 until his departure in 2015, Hawkins was vice president of new ventures and private equity investing at Eli Lilly and Company. He was responsible for the company’s venture capital, private equity and venture formation activities, managing over $1.4 billion.
In 2009, Hawkins was promoted to chief diversity officer to lead the development and implementation of Lilly’s global diversity and inclusion strategy. Lilly received national recognition for its efforts and progress during Hawkins’ tenure.
Prior to his promotion, Hawkins was director of private equity where he built strategic investment syndicates and new entities to accelerate the development of early-stage innovation. He joined Lilly in 2001 and held various roles in sales and corporate business development. In 2007, he was certified as a Six Sigma black belt.
Hawkins currently serves on the board of directors for Invesque Inc. (TSX: IVQ.U), where he chairs the audit and investment committees. He previously chaired the investment committee and served as a member of the audit as well as the compensation, nominating and governance (CNG)committees for Mainstreet Health Investments (TSX: HLP.U). He was the previous board chair for Audion Therapeutics (Netherlands) and Muroplex Therapeutics (US) as well as a board member of the Accelerator Corporation (US), Immuneworks Inc. (US) and Zymeworks Inc. (Canada). Hawkinswas also a member of the limited partner advisory committees of BioCrossroads’ Indiana Enterprise Fund (US), Epidarex Capital (UK), the Indiana Future Fund/INext Fund (US) and TVM Capital (Canada and Germany). In 2017, Hawkins earned a Board Governance Fellowship from the National Association of Corporate Directors (US).
Hawkins graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Tennessee in 1995. In 2000, he received a master’s degree in business administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Antonio Davis, PIN's Managing Venture Partner & Ambassador, is a retired American professional basketball player with sixteen years of experience playing both in Europe and in the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is an NBA All-Star who played for the Indiana Pacers, Toronto Raptors, Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks.
Davis gained valuable experience working with the National Basketball Player Association (NBPA) while serving on the Executive Committee. His responsibilities included continuous communication with players and assisted in decisions regarding the policies established by the association. During his tenure with NBPA, Davis served as First Vice President and appointed President in June 2005. He has also worked as an NBA Analyst.
Davis is excited about his role to educate current and retired athletes and help them learn how to sustain their lifestyle once they exit or have exited their sports career.
Born in upstate New York and raised in Florida, Gwyn attributes her strong work ethic and desire to help people to her humble beginnings. Gwyn is a successful real estate developer and investor, restaurateur and business owner. She has built several multimillion dollar companies from the ground up and continues to build successful businesses through hard work and building high performing teams.
Although an accomplished entrepreneur, Gwyn is most proud of her non-profit endeavors. With a strong love for children, Gwyn created the Embrace by Grace adoption agency and placed thousands of deserving children with loving families all over the world in locations including Africa, Russia, South America and North America. Due to her tireless efforts, Gwyn was twice honored with the Angel in Adoption Congressional award. This distinguished award is only awarded to a select few and must be approved by over 150 members of Congress.
Gwyn is also a steward of education which led her to become a co-founder of Walking In Love. Walking In Love is a non-profit organization that provides tutoring services for disadvantaged kids in the Central Florida area. She was able to encourage students from the University of Central Florida to volunteer their time to tutor these kids. Walking In Love is still providing tutoring services in Central Florida nearly 15 years later.
Gwyn understands the importance of PIN and decided to become involved not only as an investor but as an active part of its growth. She states, “PIN is extremely necessary for minority-owned companies because it provides an educational platform and access to resources, including capital, to help them scale properly, become more visible and competitive in the trillion-dollar supplier industry.”
Even with a demanding schedule, Gwyn is an avid reader, enjoys traveling, working out and spending time with family and friends. She also gives back to her community through ministry and is part of several organizations that provide mentorship and entrepreneurial guidance to women and minorities.
Gwyn graduated from Palm Beach Atlantic University with a B.S. in Organizational Management and Behavior and a Master’s in Business with an emphasis in Leadership.
Vasantha Madasu is an incisive, result oriented professional with more than 20 plus years of global experience in leading IT consulting and professional services organizations. Starting her career as a Technology Consultant at Alcatel-Lucent Technologies, Ms. Madasu had great success in her professional career and held several executive positions as President, CEO, CSO, and COO of multiple professional services organizations.
PIN is honored to have Ms. Madasu as a Managing Partner. She has been an intracule part of PIN’s foundation and success since connecting with Founder and CEO, Rodney Woods. "I have known Rodney for more than 10 years, and he is one of the smartest, humble and genuine people I have met on my professional and personal journey. I believe in his passion, dedication and primarily in the cause/foundation of the PIN platform to support small business owners to create a positive impact on the minority business community," says Ms. Madasu.
A people's person, Ms.Madasu has a strong background in building and nurturing relationships with clients and professional associations. She draws on her exceptional business and technical acumen to reverse situations and drive new initiatives in successfully steering professional consulting services across the industries of financial services, high tech, biopharmaceuticals, manufacturing and telecommunications in global markets.
Ms.Madasu is the president and Chief Executive Officer of Vital Pharma Solutions, LLC, one of the fastest growing talent and technology solutions firms in the Life Sciences and Healthcare industry. VPS is focused on its vision to donate a portion of its profits to non-profit organizations focused on the welfare of women and children.
She serves on the Board of Trustees for Montgomery Academy Foundation, a New Jersey non-profit organization offering therapeutic services to those students experiencing social, emotional and educational challenges that cannot be met in their local and regional school districts.
She is the Executive Director of ASSETINDIA Foundation, a not-for-profit organization that provides help and support to women and girls rescued from human trafficking and to the children of women in sex-trade work in underdeveloped areas of India.
Throughout her professional career, Ms. Madasu has been actively involved in many charitable and civic organizations, volunteering her time and offering financial support.
Ms. Madasu holds a Master’s in Commerce and a Master’s in Business Administration. She also loves to spend every minute of free time with her precious granddaughter Leela.
Carl Dorvil grew up in Garland, Texas and is the son of Haitian immigrants. Dorvil graduated from SMU in 2005 with a Triple Major in Public Policy, Economics, and Psychology, with Distinction; he also received his MBA from SMU Cox School of Business. Dorvil is an entrepreneur with a passion for social enterprises. His most successful business to date is a mentoring/tutoring company called Group Excellence. In 2004, he founded Group Excellence out of his dorm room at SMU. The company started with a $20,000 grant from Texas Instrument Foundation. Since its inception, Group Excellence has provided over 800,000 hours of tutoring to students around the country, and created over 2,000 jobs. In 2011, Dorvil sold the company to a Dallas-based investor group. Two years later, he bought it back for 10% of the original sales price. In 2010, Dorvil received the Minority Business Leader award from the Dallas Business Journal and Group Excellence made it to the Top 100 on SMU’s Dallas 100 Fastest-Growing Businesses list. In 2011, Dorvil was the youngest-ever honoree on the DBJ’s 40 Under Forty, and Group Excellence was Number 450 on the Inc. 500 List of fastest-growing companies in the United States. In addition to Group Excellence, Dorvil is the CEO of GEX Management – a full service back office business for fellow entrepreneuroholics. He is also Co-Founder and Managing Partner of VICAR – a growing family of investment companies and a Board Member/Investor in a number of private companies in Texas, Florida, and Delaware (to name a few). He is also a regular contributor to Forbes, with his most recent article being Challenges and Opportunities When Doing Business With The Government. Dorvil carries his Series 82 and Series 63 licenses.
LaRhonda Hytchye has twenty years of experience working with Disadvantaged, Minority, Woman-Owned and Small Business Enterprises (D/M/W/SBE). She began her career working in the certification industry at the North Central Texas Regional Certification Agency (NCTRCA). During her tenure with NCTRCA, she was responsible for the annual approval of over three thousand D/M/WBE firms utilizing the standards and procedures developed by the Board of Directors along with the federal regulations established by the United States Department of Transportation 49 CFR Part 23 and 26.
In 2008, LaRhonda joined the North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA) as the Manager of its Business Diversity Department. Her duties included reviewing bid specifications, identifying available ready, willing and able D/M/WBEs, and recommended contract-specific goals. She participated in all formal procurements including pre-proposal/pre-bid meetings and selection committees. She collaborated in the development of the department’s annual budget, assisted in creating and implementing internal policies and procedures manuals, auditing contract compliance and participated in outreach events for the organization.
LaRhonda currently serves as VP of Business for Diversity In Promotions (DIP). She is a strategic liaison between majority corporations and M/WBES with efforts to increase supplier diversity spend. She assists M/WBEs scale and grow, obtain access to capital, and identify potential contracting opportunities.
LaRhonda received a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration/Management from the American InterContinental University.
William Harber was born in Buffalo, New York. He attended Eastern Michigan University on a track and field scholarship and received a degree in exercise physiology. Harber took his experiences and skills to Canisius College where he accepted a position as track coach while studying in their sports business administration program. He was then certified as a strength and conditioning specialist and later became a certified K-12 physical educator.
Harber started a successful business offering training and conditioning to professional, college, and high school athletes for various sports. He enjoys giving lectures on new and innovative training methods for non-athletes as well. After working closely with many athletes, Harber realized he could do more than help them physically. He had great connections with the business community and was well respected. So he soon developed a plan to help athletes maximize their branding potential in the form of endorsements, setting up non-profit organizations and signature events. Being a former athlete himself, he knew the power of a great brand.
With over a decade of experience in education, training, public speaking, event planning and developing corporate relationships, Harber’s passion to do more keeps him going. He uses his trademark skills of problem-solving, creativity, and flexibility to help clients design and implement results-oriented programming, including on and off-premise promotions targeting large audiences, product sampling, custom event marketing programs and nightlife marketing campaigns. He excels at logistics and operations, and his attention to detail means that special events and meetings go smoothly from concept to completion.
Harber has held various accounts with Diageo, the world’s largest supplier of spirits. He’s formulated strategies to bring several tours throughout the United States providing exposure to signature cigar events for General Cigar Company. Being a part of these programs have helped Harber to become a pivotal part of maintaining brand recognition for the company while constantly checking the pulse of the consumer. He is also the Director of Special Events at Diversity In Promotions (DIP), a Dallas-based strategic marketing firm specializing in minority/women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) business development, diversity program management, outreach and contract compliance with primary focus on diversity procurement & supplier diversity initiatives to help strengthen relationships between M/WBEs, corporations, athletes, entertainers and private investors.
With the depth and experience provided by Harber, his goal for PIN is to develop a detailed and comprehensive plan for successful implementation of all events. He's committed to bringing high energy, a positive attitude and real solutions to the PIN platform.
Harber resides in Washington, DC.
Sean’s professional career began at the United States Olympic Committee where he developed marketing strategies for Olympic sponsors and athletes. While at the USOC, he created the Finding Leaders Among Minorites (F.L.A.M.E.) program to expose minority student-leaders to the Olympic Movement and its values. Today, F.L.A.M.E. is the longest tenured program at the USOC.
After serving in leadership roles at several Fortune 500 companies for nearly 25 years, he left corporate America and founded Lyles Enterprises, LLC providing business consulting and inspiring audiences as a corporate speaker. As a former student-athlete, Sean understands how your MINDset™ impacts performance. Having faced real-life hardships, he knows firsthand that mental toughness is essential to overcoming obstacles to achieve the results in life and business that you desire. Sean has captivated audiences at organizations including the United States Olympic Committee, Walt Disney World Resort®, and Waste Management. It all starts with the MINDset™ is not just a motivational statement, it’s a strategy. The moment you decide to change your MINDset™ is the moment you change your life.
As a minority business owner, Sean says, “PIN not only provides a roadmap for minority business owners but perspective and clarity. I’m excited to be a part of PIN because it allows me to share the skills and knowledge I’ve gained and give back to the community.”
Sean currently serves on the Board of Directors at UCP of Central Florida and is a mentor and youth sports coach. Sean received a BA in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his MA in Administration from the University of Northern Colorado at Greeley.
As Chief Client Officer of the Athlete & Entertainer Division, Regina oversees the company’s athlete and entertainer customer relationships. With her exceptional communication and partnership skills and her strong sense of customer service, Regina focuses on customer engagement, ensuring they benefit from the company’s resources, knowledge and experience, creating opportunities for them and to help move our clients’ businesses forward.
With more than 15 years of experience in the sports and entertainment industry, Regina has worked with high-profile clients specializing in business operations and management, brand and event management, strategic marketing consulting, as well as talent acquisition and talent management. She has successfully implemented project operations from discovery to end-to-end execution, working collaboratively with clients to develop strategy and execution, provide integrated marketing and event planning services.
Based in Washington, D.C., Regina was formerly at Edelman (Global Communications) for 12 years as a Senior Operations Manager. She was also a Business Development Consultant at Diversity in Promotions (DIP).
Regina earned a B.S. in Chemistry and minor in Information Systems & Technology from Syracuse University. While attending Syracuse, she was a tutor for the Department of Athletics. She also earned her M.S. in Management with MIS track and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Maryland. She has previously worked at Kaiser Permanente while studying in the Doctor of Pharmacy program at Howard University, and at the Gillette Research Institute while studying her undergraduate degree.
Angela Richardson Allen, a native of Los Angeles, operates as a Relationship Manager for PIN. Her role includes assisting M/WBE, LGBTQ and Small Businesses navigate the PIN portal, conduct an assessment of company operations and review the current financial position, determine if additional services (i.e., business plans, audited financials) are necessary, recommend appropriate financial solutions, and ensure M/WBEs are not deluded and retain major ownership interest.
Angela is also CEO of Diversity Visions. She began working in the Insurance Industry in 2000. Angela holds a B.A. degree in Graphic Arts from San Diego State University and an M.B.A. from National University. She is also a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated. She is licensed in Life and Health and Property Casualty General Lines.
As CEO of Diversity Visions, she created and maintains all facets of the business. Angela has a proven track record for excelling and helping others understand the importance of securing their business. Angela secures key person insurance, commonly called “key man insurance.” Angela strength in knowledge and innovation has enhanced her ability to introduce a method of business insurance that would compensate businesses and protect them from any financial losses that would arise from a key man’s death or extended incapacity. In this role, Angela’s mission is to help business owners navigate through all the options, so they can make an informed decision about the business they have worked so hard to build.
Angela is also the President and Founder of Masterful Collective comprised of a Sports and Event Marketing Boutique, The Allen Insurance Agency and Masterful Financial Services. She has worked with Professional Athletes, Off the Field Players’ Wives Association, Sam’s Club, Bank of America and many other businesses where she assisted in helping raise funds for charitable organizations for over 20 years.
Angela was a devoted wife of 9 years before suddenly losing her husband whom she met while attending church in Los Angeles. As a widow, she has dedicated her new journey to helping other widows reposition themselves by inspiring them to live a life filled with joy. Because of her experience, she is dedicated to fulfilling her purpose. Angela became an Author. Angela understands how fragile life can be and vows to live it to the fullest. While helping widows, she also realized the disparity in the lack of preparation and organization of personal affairs for many of the women she served. Angela made it her mission to develop tools to help families navigate through all the changes without them sacrificing their peace of mind. One of those tools is a book entitled, “The Bitter Taste of Grief, A Widows Prayer Journal.” Additionally, along with her daughter Amaya, they co-authored “A Far Away Place,” a book geared to help children cope with death and grief. Angela joined several authors to compile stories of tragedy-to-triumph called, “Roses and Thorns” and “It’s a New Journey.”
Classically trained in art and design at Columbus College of Art & Design, in Columbus Ohio. Scott is a leading graphic artist in Atlanta with 26 years of professional experience. He is the owner/creative director for brandExx, Inc., celebrating our 14 years of creativity in Alpharetta, Georgia. Scott has designed several of the elite NASCAR teams sites including: jeffgordon.com, fitzbradshawracing.com, joegibbsracing.com and the joegibbsracing online store. Scott is an APPLE computer preferred vendor, designing internal sales force interface design. Scott’s talents include web & e-commerce solutions, interface design, package design and print for a wide variety of clients, ranging from elite professional athletes (NBA, NFL, NASCAR) to well established corporate clients and startup companies and products. Scott manages a design team working with award winning in-house photographers & image development consultants to provide messages and images that catch the attention of your audience.
The transition from Professional Basketball to Business Executive did not take long for Butch Carter. In 2000, he found the right corporate asset in Carter Group, Inc., a world-class designer, and distributor of electronic controllers for automobiles, putting the right people in place to develop a manufacturing footprint in less than two years in Oakville, ON. Through benchmarking and implementing best practices, Carter grew company sales annually from US $200,000 to just over US $22 Million in two years. The Company owned or controlled six patents on its LPM technology and had over 13 Million LPM units in GM cars and trucks. Under Carter’s Management, the Company produced 13 Million electronic modules with a failure rate of less than 3 per million.
Carter Group’s corporate structure included a US parent with a Minority Business Enterprise (“MBE”) certification, being the first in North American to combine Canadian technology with a U.S. MBE. Because of his business sense, Carter was asked to become a PIN Advisor. He understands the landscape and knows how to coach business leaders.
Carter played at Indiana University for four years, graduating with a degree in marketing. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers in the second round of the 1980 draft, filling in for an injured Magic Johnson during his rookie campaign. Carter played a total of 361 games over six seasons with the LA Lakers, Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks. He held the NBA record for most points scored in an overtime period with 14 points against Boston on March 20, 1984.
Before joining the Milwaukee Bucks, Carter served as an Assistant Coach in Dayton for two seasons from 1989-91 and for one year at Long Beach State. Moving to the Toronto Raptors in 1997 as an Assistant Coach, Carter was later appointed the coveted Head Coaching position on June 12, 1998.
Carter brought 11 solid years of NBA experience as a player and coach to the Raptors bench. He is known to have an outstanding work ethic and an unbelievable attention to detail. He is the first coach in the history of the NBA to take to take a team from less than 20 wins to the playoffs in two seasons.
Coach Carter now spends most of his time mentoring and advising entrepreneurs on how to build sound, efficient companies.
For years, Levi Davis has influenced many who followed his career, but for PIN's Founder, Managing Partner, Chief Executive Officer & Board Chairman, Rodney Woods, he's grateful to call him a mentor. "Levi has always been a man of integrity, and I value his opinions and admire his business and leadership skills. He's a great asset to the PIN Team," says Woods.
Mr. Davis has been active in Dallas community affairs as a municipal and business leader, an educator and a humanitarian for more than 30 years. He served as the Assistant City Manager for the City of Dallas. He was responsible for the overall direction, planning, and implementation of goals and objectives for multiple departments, including Police, Fire, Human Services, Environmental Health, Public Consumer Affairs, the Emergency Preparedness Office and Convention and Event Services.
Since 1992, Mr. Davis has served as lead banker for senior-managed transactions in Texas and Louisiana totaling $6 billion. His clients include both the State of Texas and Louisiana as well as the cities of Austin, Arlington, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, Plano, Lubbock and the City of Baton Rouge. He has also been involved in the financings for various school districts, hospitals, and other issuers (i.e., D/FW Airport, Dallas Area Rapid Transit System and the North Texas Tollway Authority). Mr. Davis also has extensive financial experience in senior and multi-family housing, economic and urban development and governmental/private sector project development.
In addition to his understanding of the municipal and economic development programs, Mr. Davis has extensive background in community involvement and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Methodist Hospital of Dallas, North Texas Public Broadcasting (KERA), Texas Hospital Trustees, Momentum Texas, African American Museum and was a member of the countywide Parkland Hospital Blue Ribbon Committee charged with recommending the scope and financing for a new County hospital. Previously he served as a board member on Dallas Symphony Board, Dallas Children’s Theatre, Baylor College of Dentistry, Chairman of the Boy Scouts of American West View District, Eirene Ministries, Inc., and the Advisory Committee for the Dallas Arts District.
Mr. Davis graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with an M.A. in Urban Affairs with a special emphasis in Public Administration and has been recognized as one of the University’s Outstanding Alumnus. He also received a B.S. in Education from Texas Christian University, and he is a military service veteran.
Dawnn Lewis, PIN's Brand Ambassador, is a multitalented and multifaceted individual: President & CEO of Morning Jewel Inc. – a multi-platform production company in the areas of film, television, animation, music/music publishing & experiential events. She is also the Founder & President of the A New Day Foundation – a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization, that provides financial & programmatic support to underprivileged youth and grassroots community based nonprofit organizations. A new program will launch this Spring called Focused N F.I.T. For A Different World. Its purpose is to “shock the mindset”, motivate and empower today’s youth by highlighting Lewis’ extraordinary personal and professional journey, while Financial & Technology partners equip college and college-bound high school students with tangible tools to be "F.I.T." - Financially and Technologically Informed.
As a PIN Brand Ambassador, Lewis will participate in a series of marketing and fundraising initiatives including social media and brand awareness events for PIN. With this alignment, PIN will also assist Lewis with efforts to expose and gain support for her nonprofit, A New Day Foundation.
Without question, Lewis is exceptionally gifted and talented. She is an: NAACP Image Award, Trumpet Award, Grammy Award-winning singer, multiple ASCAP & BMI Award-winning songwriter, film, television & stage actor, and a Series TV creator/producer. Lewis mesmerized audiences with her powerful voice and stirring performance in the ETC 2017 production of Gershwin’s PORGY & BESS as “Serena”, and can now be seen recurring on three hit series: NBC’s THIS IS US!, TNT’s MAJOR CRIMES & the CW’s IZOMBIE. Lewis can also be “heard” giving voice to several characters such as “Patty” in APPLE & ONION, “Chief” in the new WHERE IN THE WORLD IS CARMEN SAN DIEGO, “LaBarbara” in FUTURAMA, “Mrs. Hanshaw” & “Mrs. Buttercup” in SOPHIA THE FIRST, “Granny McStuffins” in DOC MCSTUFFINS, “Bobe” in HOME, “Professor Klabbrax” in CLEOPATRA IN SPACE, as well as a variety of characters in the animated series THE SIMPSONS, CURIOUS GEORGE, TURBO & Disney/Pixar’s Academy Award winning animated feature hits INSIDE OUT! and MONSTERS UNIVERSITY. Perhaps best known for her roles on the hit TV shows A DIFFERENT WORLD (composer of shows theme song), HANGIN’ WITH MR. COOPER & ANY DAY NOW, she has received rave reviews and the BEST World Premiere of the Broadway hit “SISTER ACT: THE MUSICAL” as the “outrageous, Nun-On-The-Run”, Deloris Van Cartier. She also starred in the NYC City Center “Encore’s” Broadway presentation of THE WIZ as Addapearle. Lewis' record label, Morning Jewel Music, released her successful solo CD Worth Waiting For; the title song is featured in the Disney movie THE POOF POINT soundtrack, in which she starred. She is currently working on the feature film: REVIVAL, written & produced by acclaimed actor Harry Lennix, starring GRAMMY sensation Mali Music.
Lewis has served the last 8.5 years on the National Advisory Board of the NATIONAL CENTER FOR CIVIL & HUMAN RIGHTS in Atlanta, Ga., & completed her fourth term on the SAG National Board of Directors. She also finds time to teach Master Classes, mentor youth across the country, give motivational lectures and lend her support to: The Brotherhood Crusade, The United Negro College Fund; American Cancer Society; The March of Dimes; EMPOWHER; the Hall of Fame Foundation; Habitat For Humanity; The United States Conference on AIDS; The K.I.S. Foundation for Sickle Cell Disease; Artists For A New South Africa; The Los Angeles Urban League; Campfire Boys and Girls; The NBA/WNBA and other important causes.
Beverly Johnson has over 20 years’ experience as a business leader in the areas of finance, marketing, supply management, and manufacturing operations, and worked as a consultant in Fortune 500 companies, as well as major franchises. Additionally, she has spent over seven years as an educator teaching corporate finance, personal finance, marketing, and leadership in colleges and universities, to underserved communities, and to corporate partners.
She is originally from Illinois and spent over sixteen years (active and reserve) as an officer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. I served in Virginia, Missouri, Europe and the Hawaiian Islands. I was the first African American Women to graduate from the ABET accredited program at the U.S. Military Academy with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, Automotive Systems. I also hold an M.S. in Engineering Management from Missouri University of Science and Technology, an Executive M.B.A from Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University, and a Master’s Degree in Personal Financial Planning with a certification in Charitable Planning, from Texas Tech University. Additionally, she is completing a doctoral degree at Texas Tech University in Personal Financial Planning where her research objectives are focused on the financial well-being of active duty military, veterans, and women.
She serves on the Advisory Board for Financial Literacy and Personal Finance at University of Texas at Arlington and as a Congressional Military Liaison to the U.S. Military Academy, where she helps lead, motivate, inspire, and guide high school youth interested in attending West Point. She serves as the chairperson for West Point LEADS (Leadership Ethics and Diversity in Stem)/STEM CEO, an annual program that partners the U.S. Military Academy with high schools to teach middle school and high school students about STEM careers, ethics & leadership, and entrepreneurship. She has authored a book of poetry entitled, “Written Amongst the Tears” and is the mother of two adult sons, Cole & Randy. Cole is a sales associate at Sewell Automotive and Randy currently attends the U.S. Military Academy.
Johnson is also the Managing Partner of PJS Services, a firm that focuses on Tax Planning and Wealth Management Strategies for small and medium size business owners.
Laron Walker is an Atlanta native who graduated summa cum laude from Tennessee State University (TSU) with a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering. Later, he enrolled in Purdue University where he obtained his Masters of Science in the same area.
As an authority in web technologies, Laron helped launch a number of technology start-ups that targeted niche markets. Throughout his career, his main focus has been to help companies plan, develop and implement their online strategy using innovative technology approaches.
Laron has always had a flair for being an entrepreneur. He helped to start his first successful web development company while he was an undergraduate student. This company focused on designing and developing database driven websites and applications during a time when the technology was relatively new. A few years later, this company was dissolved and Sciberus, Inc. was formed with a focus of developing enterprise and custom web software applications.
As President Sciberus, Inc. Laron has been instrumental in outlining a strategy to grow revenues, expand its workforce, develop key products and expand into international markets. Sciberus is a Microsoft Partner with an ISV competency, with its corporate headquarters located in Atlanta, Georgia.
Laron is also the CEO of Time2Give, Inc, a 501(c)3 that provides scholarships to high school seniors. Recently, Laron Co-Founded http://www.mystemkits.com, a company focused on providing affordable solutions to assist with STEM education efforts.
Laron is the proud Husband of Rachel Austin Walker, and father to Isaiah, Laila and Olivia.
Having been in the digital space for over 15 years Joe has gained tremendous experience in many different aspects of digital branding. He is the founder of The Social Crew, a Digital and Social Media Agency focusing on athletes, artists, brands, consumer products, entertainment, manufacturing and retail. He has spent the past 11 years dedicated to digital branding efforts of professional sports teams, athletes, reality tv stars, corporations, small businesses and so on. Creating and executing strategies for very high need clients has given Joe tremendous skills and confidence in the ever-changing world of social media. Joe sports an incredible client roster that includes the UFC, NFL Super Bowl, Dallas Cowboys, Tennessee Titans, Arizona Cardinals, Nike Football, Odell Beckham Jr, Greg Jennings, Larry Fitzgerald, Kelvin Benjamin and the Harlem Globetrotters.