As hard working Black women, sometimes we just need a girls’ night out. And that’s exactly what Ebony Edwards, the founder of Soirée in the Cities Tour – Girls Night Out , awarded us with during this fabulous event. With all that is going on in our nation, Black women have to stick together and support each other or no one else will.
Soirée in the Cities Tour was created by Ebony in 2013 and her goal was to host a girls’ night out where moms and working women could have a fashionable party and it also gives the business women and entrepreneurs a platform to come showcase their products.
Soirée in the City is a tour that takes place in a variety of cities across our nation such as Philadelphia, New York, DC, Miami, Chicago, and L.A.
EGL had the privilege to attend the Soirée in the Cities Girls Night Out at Milk River in Brooklyn, New York and speak with Ebony herself. Amongst Ebony, the honorees and the guests were vendors across all platforms. Women were their selling and promoting their jewelry, handbags, clothing, make-up, books and hair products.
Not only do women come out to sip, eat, and shop, but new relationships are built amongst women in small businesses, media, entertainment and corporate relations. The WOW (Women of Worth) factor to this event is an awards segment. Ebony notes that “the WOW award represents women who empower women, educates and supports women of all ages and backgrounds, and inspires them to give back to their communities through positive entertainment forums, mentorship, networking and volunteerism.”
The NYC girls night out honored…
Jamie Foster Brown who produced and owned the Sister 2 Sister magazine for 25 years. Prior to that, Brown worked as a secretary for Bob Johnson, the founder of BET where she then went into products and became the producer of Video Soul. The young artists at the time such as LL Cool J, Whitney Huston, and Russell Simmons were all just starting out, and Brown helped them get their start by putting them on Video Soul. After 4 years of working with BET, Jamie started her own newsletter that spoke about African Americans in the music industry. Managers would pay Brown to get their upcoming artist advertised in her newsletter. That small newsletter then turned into what is now known as Sister 2 Sister Magazine. At the time in the late 80s into the early 90s, Sister 2 Sister was one of the only magazines that featured Hip hop music. In the magazine, Brown also focused on the executives, the managers and the inside world of Hip Hop.
One piece of advice that Jamie left us with as young African American women was to “stop being so mean to each other, this is not helping us at all,” she demanded. “It’s very important for us to cluster now, and cluster means for us to work together.”
Syreta J. Oglesby is the founder and principal of her own PR firm. Syreta got her start by freelancing for allhiphop.com as a student at Spelman college where she originally majored in Bio engineering, but due to her passion for writing and communications, Syreta changed her major to English earning her Bachelors of the Arts degree. Upon her undergraduate studies, Syreta went on to pursue a graduate certificate in Public Relations and Event planning at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology. Prior to having her own business and clients, Syreta worked with Motown, Foot Locker’s corporate division in event planning consulting, Urban League, Atlantic Records and Elektra Records. Syreta devotes her time to Delta Sigma Theta sorority, Operation Take Back Jersey City, and Ween (Women in Entertainment Empowerment Networking).
Due to the recent Election results, Syreta realizes that most African American women are feeling discouraged. “Don’t ever let anyone steal you magic,” Syreta told us. “What we can do is prepare for our future the best that we can, be proactive in it, and work really hard to achieve what we set forth to do.”
Eden Duncan-Smith is a 17-year-old actress and who started on Broadway in The Lion King and Fences. Eden was in the recent remake of the classic film Annie, Steps; a short indi-film which was produced by Shaquille O’Neal and Medowland on Netflix. Coming soon Eden will appear in See You Yesterday which is produced by Spike Lee and Roxanne, Roxanne: a biopic of hip-hop legend Roxanne Shanté.
We thank Ebony for putting together such an empowering and inspiring girls’ night out. As young African American women, we can be anything we want to be and each woman in the building made that perfectly clear.
Make sure you visit http://www.soireeinthecities.com because this girls’ night out tour will be coming to a city near you.
Written By: Marshay Rice