Since their inception in the early 1800s, historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) have produced some of the finest and most celebrated African-American men and women across the country in every human endeavor.
HBCUs are breeding grounds for cultural awareness as well as character and community building. In an effort to socialize and honor the wealth of talent each these institutions yield, the annual celebration – HBCU 30 Under 30 – was born. Those who have made the 30 under 30 classes in years prior include civil rights leaders, doctors, Olympians, educators, politicians, lawyers, musicians, engineers, actors/actresses, humanitarians, professional athletes, religious leaders, bankers, writers, and scientists. Check out the former classes here. This year, we are ready to highlight the best class yet!
Every institution, large or small, has scholars that deserve to be nationally recognized for their achievement and/or contribution. These leaders represent the best-of-class HBCU scholars who embody the mission of our beloved institutions. They while blaze a trail in their own regard.
HBCUs have more to offer than homecoming; and as members of the HBCU community, it is our duty to reach back and pull forward.
This year we are pleased to announce 30 distinguished HBCU-educated scholars.
30. Demetrius Johnson Jr. – University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
Demetrius Johnson Jr. is the youngest out of all existing HBCU supportive organizations to operate a non-profit organization in supporting HBCUs and the first President, CEO, and Founder of HBCU Campaign Fund organization, which is based out of Chicago, Illinois. Mr. Johnson is a native of Chicago, Illinois, and is currently an undergraduate student at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (a historically black college and university located in Pine Bluff, Arkansas), where he is studying in the field of computer science to be expected to graduate in May 2016. Mr. Johnson is a graduate of Christian Fenger High School. At UAPB, Mr. Johnson served in many organizations such as SGA, UPB (Union Programming Board), and the Arkansasawyer to name a few. He worked as a student coordinator at the Harrold Complex Living and Learning Center on campus.
Upon graduation, Mr. Johnson is seeking graduate school in the field of non-profit leadership, public administration, business management or educational leadership preferably at a HBCU in the growth of him to improve his skills and knowledge in the betterment of operations of HCF. He is inspired in wanting to pursue in becoming a President or Chancellor of an HBCU institution one day and as well as operating HCF.
As described as a high energize, enthusiast and visionary advocate for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Mr. Johnson vision of the HBCU Campaign Fund were to organize a non-profit organization that will be an essential tool to support the significance, another avenue of advertisement and raise contributions to providing assistance for HBCUs and students who attend them. HCF was founded in 2012 and incorporated as a non-profit in 2015. Mr. Johnson dream goal is to assist HBCUs in continuing to be primer institutions that were created to serve academic excellence to the African-American community and as of today a diverse population.
Mr. Johnson intentions for the HBCU Campaign Fund in becoming a foundation to give back to HBCUs and students and join the list of other organization such as United Negro College Fund, Thurgood Marshall College Fund, and Tom Joyner Foundation. He wants HCF to be the field of promoting the existence into the eyes of future interest students and supporters to attend and support HBCUs by keeping them alive for many years and centuries to come. He wants to live to grow and learn by being the first President and CEO of HCF in improving and moving the organization to serve HBCUs, students, and alumni.
As a young up and coming President and CEO of a non-profit who is inspired and dedicated to working in helping educational institutions that were created over 140 years to teaching and training African-Americans. Mr. Johnson hopes to experience and expertise working with HBCU Chancellors and President, faculty and staff, students, alumni, supporters, corporation support and fellow HBCU supportive organization. He also hopes to experience and expertise working with the college students from an empowerment and youth-driven perspective.
29. Valerie Edwards – Elizabeth City State University
Even back in high school in Whiteville, NC, Valerie Edwards had her eye on the news. She paid attention to newspapers, to the local news, to the news magazines that gave her a window to the wider world, to the national news that morphed into the 24/7 institution it is today.
Valerie’s curiosity has paid off, because now, after four years at ECSU, she’s headed to one of the pre-eminent schools of journalism in all the world— The Columbia School of Journalism, in New York City. She’ll pursue a Master’s of Science degree there. Valerie credits much of this new opportunity to two professors at ECSU, her Honors advisor Dr. Velma Blackmon and Professor Kip Branch, her advisor on several school publications.
“The thing that made ECSU so great for me was that I got a whole education, one that pushed me to learn but that did it in a way that was right for me. My professors knew me by name and really got to know me. And I was encouraged to try things outside my usual frame of concentration. In my case, I’ve always been interested in verbal things, and I sort of always knew that I’d be doing something in that direction, but I also needed to broaden my experience. I was able to do that at ECSU in ways that no other school offered. In fact, I am a double major in Mass Communications and Aviation Science and I’m licensed to fly a Cessna 150. Imagine doing that at any other school!”
“In short, I came away from ECSU ready for the world, with lots more to take with me than I brought with me to school. And I thank ECSU for that.” Edwards is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., National Association of Black Journalists, Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society, Women in Aviation International, and Active Minds.
28. Kaj Najee Gumbs – Morehouse College
Kaj Najee Gumbs is an active 20 year old Man of Morehouse. As a student at Morehouse he has taken on many roles. In 2014 Kaj Became the youngest Keynote speaker at the Chantilly Pyramid Minority Student Achievement Committee’s (CPMSAC) annual award ceremony; the largest minority Award Ceremony in the State of Virginia. Over the last two summers Kaj has worked as a Public Affairs and Political Affairs Summer employee for the United States Ambassador to Canada, Bruce Heyman. In June of 2015 he was appointed as a Peace Corps Campus Ambassador to the campuses of Morehouse College, Spelman College, and Clark Atlanta. Later that year he was elected as the Vice President of the Morehouse College Young Democrats of America, he works for Razor Solutions Group LLC., a political consulting and fundraising firm, and at the beginning of 2016 he was appointed and sworn in as Georgia NAACP Youth and College Division Political Action Committee Chairman.
Over his short tenure with his position, Kaj has set a strict agenda for himself. Over the last two months he has done community outreach and taken on fights against the potential legislation in the state of Georgia such as: Georgia House Bill 859 that allows the concealed carry of a firearm on public colleges in the state of Georgia, and Georgia House Bill 757 that allows the discrimination of LGBTQIA folk from being served by any business that feels it against their religion. Kaj has testified in front of the Georgia Senate Judiciary Committee to speak out in opposition of House Bill 859. Once the bill was ultimately passed, Kaj has been an outspoken advocate against the bill, and has worked to continuously put Governor Nathan Deal to veto the bill.
Kaj has also set forth an initiative to reach out to the next generation and express to them the importance of becoming civically engaged. He has recently concluded an almost 2 month tour in which he has gone out to high schools in the Greater Atlanta Area, such as Benjamin Elijah Mays High School, and discussed the importance of becoming civically engaged, the importance of sexual assault prevention and reporting, and has also garnered results by registering almost 100 young students to vote.
While working for the United States Ambassador to Canada, Kaj worked as a direct point of contact between the State Department and the Canadian and U.S. sports teams during the Pan-American Games in Toronto, Canada, the largest sporting event to ever be held in the country. Currently, Kaj works for the offices of a “Georgia Stand-up,” a non-profit organization in the state of Georgia that takes on a plethora of issues, from Sexual Assault to voter disenfranchisement. Alongside his work with the non-profit, he has advocated and is in the process of working with the Fulton County Board of Elections to help get voter polling booths on all three campuses in the Atlanta University Center. During the summer Kaj will be working for the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, focusing on keeping strong Unions in the city of Atlanta and protecting the rights and dignity of all working class people.
27. Imani Pope-Johns – Howard University
As someone who has a passion for seeing people with their own businesses thrive, the only way she saw fit is to help others is through publicity. As a former magazine writer and 20-something media maven, Imani has been able to secure red carpet appearances, develop partnerships, increase social media visibility, secure product placements, press in local to international media and much more.
Essence.com, Yahoo!, Thrillist, Conde Naste Traveller, Yahoo Travel, TheRoot.com, BET.com, Heed Mag, Sister2Sister Magazine, Fox 5 News DC, Black Enterprise, AFROPUNK.com, Singersroom.com, MTV, BeMagazine, Soultrain.com & more…
Imani began marketing her services under the name, ModelisquePR (2010 – 2012) with her former client, singer Qwanell Mosley of music group Day26. After years of work, she created Influplexity, LLC; a publicity boutique providing services to beauty, lifestyle (food, fitness, finance, tech, wine) and music. The company motto is sophisticated influence and she strives to provide clients with media services of quality with grace.
Check out her most recent clients were Airfordable, Sole Savers, Finances Simplified and MECKids
26. Dennis Richmond Jr. – Claflin University
Class of 2017 | African and African American Studies Major – Education Minor Dennis Richmond, Jr. is a 21-year- old graduating senior at Claflin University in Orangeburg, South Carolina and upon graduation (2017) will be a second generation Claflinite, following his mother Mrs. Hortena D. Richmond. While matriculating and Claflin, Richmond has been awarded over a half dozen scholarships. Two of his scholarships and his summer 2016 fellowship have all been through the UNCF. Richmond has appeared on over two dozen television stations through the UNCFs, “An Evening of Stars” event, to which he was awarded a $25,000 scholarship through Target and the UNCF.
Richmond’s most notable piece of work to date, prior to his demonstrated passion for genealogical research, is advocating for HBCUs through his New York State HBCU Initiative. He continues to, “beat the drum for HBCUs” as former Claflin professor Patricia H. Koger stated to him over a year ago. Richmond travels across New York, free of charge to educate students about the importance of HBCUs and the benefits, scholarships, and networking opportunities that can be achieved when they attend them. Richmond’s initiative is specifically for New York and many New Yorkers are very much aware of it. He is sponsored by businessman and rapper Jadakiss, Former NBA Player and Ex. Dir. of The Nepperhan Community Center in Yonkers, NY Rev.Dr. Jim Bostic, three NYS Assembly members; J. Gary Pretlow, N. Nick Perry,and Shelley Mayer and he has gained the support of LHHNY’s singer and songwriter Cardi B, Congressman Eliot L. Engel, NYS Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Dr. Ivory A. Toldson of The White House Initiative on HBCUs, andAshley Sharpton to name a few.
Despite his rapid networking and growing fan base, Richmond has two internship experiences under his belt, both of which were completed summer 2016. He was the Education Policy and Public Affairs intern for The Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) in Washington, D.C. and the Departmental Aide and Casework intern at Westchester County DSS’s Yonkers Office. He is a member of numerous organizations including The NAACP and Pi Gamma Mu Honor Society, and was a February 2016 Who’s Who Among Students In American Universities & Colleges Honoree.
25. Malik Perkins – Central State University
As a recent graduate from Central State University I am thrilled to begin my career in my hometown with Newscenter 7! I am an All Media Journalist and I provide content for television, radio, and print. I was born and raised in Dayton, Ohio. I attended Dayton Christian Schools from Kindergarten all the way through High School at their various campuses. I ran track and played football as a student at Dayton Christian. I also played trumpet in the band for seven years.
In May of 2014, I graduated from Central State University with a bachelor’s degree in Communication with a focus in Broadcast Media. During my college years I was a member of the Invincible Marching Marauders, served as president of the National Association of Black Journalists, and hosted the radio program “Jazz at Sundown” on Jazzy 88.9 WCSU. I also worked in WHIO radio as a board operator and helped produce “Flyer Feedback.”
I was granted the opportunity to become an All Media Journalist during my last semester of college. I am looking forward to telling the stories of our community. I couldn’t be more excited about covering Dayton, Ohio!
24. Nolan D. McCaskill – Florida A&M University
Nolan D. McCaskill is a breaking news reporter at POLITICO, where started as an inaugural member of POLITICO’s Journalism Institute in 2014 before accepting a yearlong fellowship through 2015.
Nolan is a 2014 graduate of Florida A&M University, where he received legacy, vision and student journalist of the year awards for his leadership and selflessness. He was also named a third-place College Journalist of the Year in 2014 by the Southeast Journalism Conference.
A former editor-in-chief of his college newspaper, The Famuan, and former producer for his university’s live television newscasts, Nolan has also completed internships at Ocala Style Magazine and The News & Observer.
23. Shae Harris – North Carolina A&T
Shae is the Deputy Director at the Mayor’s Office on Returning Citizen Affairs in Washington, D.C, where she informs policies and legislation for people returning home from incarceration. In her capacity, she directs and coordinates operations, while serving as the liaison between her agency, community-based organizations and local/national stakeholders within the reentry community.
She received her Master of Public Administration from American University and holds a B.A. in Political Science from North Carolina A&T State University. She also received a Nonprofit Executive Management Certificate from Georgetown University.
Previously, she served as the School Partnership Manager for College Summit, the nation’s largest nonprofit dedicated to transforming the lives of low-income youth by connecting them to college and careers. Shae also has a wealth of experience from working with various nonprofits in the D.C. metropolitan region to improve the lives of marginalized and underserved populations in the District.
22. Tariq Touré – Bowie State University
Tariq Touré is a Writer and Social Justice Advocate born and raised in West Baltimore, Maryland. Touré’s undergraduate career was spent at Bowie State University where he earned a full football scholarship. With a Master’s Degree in Social Work concentrating in Macro practice from Howard University, Touré has paired his renowned creative spirit with lifelong change agency, and catapulted himself among the best emerging new millennial thinkers in the world. In 2014 and 2016 Touré organized the first two annual “Professional Athlete Summits” engaging minority athletes in developing a wider perspective on the business and politics of sports.
Touré is the co-founder of the first Interfaith Rally Against Hate (IRAH) in response to violence against the marginalized religious communities. Touré’s debut compilation of poetry, “Black Seeds” was the number one selling book in African American Literature and in Black History Month of this year and is ranked in the top 100 best sellers on Amazon. In 2016, Touré has been recognized as one of the top 100 Muslim advocates for justice by MPower Change, and honored as the “Rising Community Voice” in Baltimore Magazine’s Best of Baltimore 2016 issue. International Hip Hop artist “Black Thought” and renowned Baltimore Author “D. Watkins” have regarded Tariq Touré as the “Amiri Baraka of this era.
21. Christina Epps – Coppin State University
Christina Epps (born June 20, 1991) is an American track and field athlete who specializes in the triple jump. She competed at the 2015 World Championships in Beijing without qualifying for the final. Her personal bests in the event are 14.09 meters outdoors (+1.1 m/s, Eugene 2015) and 13.16 meters indoors (New York 2014).
Epps grew up in Morristown, New Jersey and graduated from Morristown High School in 2009.
Keturah Orji joined Team USA teammate Andrea Geubelle as the only two with 2016 Olympic Standard at 2016 United States Olympic Trials (track and field) and will represent the United States at Athletics at the 2016 Summer Olympics and in the fifth round the pair were joined by Christina Epps who jumped the 2016 Olympic Standard to form a trio for Rio.
20. Simona Noce – Howard University
Simona is a twenty-something Afropolitan passionate about God, special events, public relations and motherhood! A DC girl now, running around somewhere handling press,special events, screenings and more! She is a proud Howard University Alumna, with B.A in Public Relations.
A Public Relations professional with an intense passion for media, entertainment, and the execution of creative ideas and special events. She has pierced the world of both Hollywood glamour and the non-profits sectors in the D.C area. Her wealth of experience boasts a large network of strong media relationships, and has proven results in securing national and local placement for diverse clients and the employment of social media as an effective tool to generate response and action. Her work experience includes companies such as International Creative Management, 2U Inc. The American Black Film Festival, HOWARDwood, May Sisters Entertainment and the Sorenson McQueen PR Group of BET’s “Black Girls Rock!” She also proudly served as the communication and policy director for the Rebecca Project of Human Rights.
She currently is an Account Executive at Allied Integrated Marketing, leading film campaigns on behalf of high profile clients such as Screen Gems, Universal, STX Entertainment, Sony Picture Classics, Faith & Family, and MOXY (Allied’s African American division).Known for having her hands full; She is the founding & lead host of Our Family Dinner (DC chapter), the co-founder of District Motherhued,and runs SimonaNoce PRoductions (her wedding planning business). She also occasionally blogs, if her kids aren’t throwing sippy-cups at each other.
If you can’t find her managing press on a red carpet or scheduling interviews on a talent press tour, then she’s off building her brand as a mommy blogger, or better yet placing the final touches on a client’s event!
19. Temarrick Hemingway – South Carolina State University
Temarrick Hemingway is an American football tight end for the Los Angeles Rams of the National Football League (NFL). The Rams selected tight end Temmarick Hemingway of South Carolina State in the sixth round with the 177th overall pick in the NFL draft. Hemingway is the second tight end selected by the Rams.
Hemingway, 6-foot-4 and 244 pounds, caught 38 passes for 418 yards and a touchdown last season. Hemingway participated in the NFLPA Bowl in Carson after the season and performed well at the NFL scouting combine.
18. Amanda Hamilton – Prairie View A&M University
Amanda Hamilton is a native of Houston, TX and a graduate of Prairie View A&M University with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a minor in Psychology. While at Prairie View, Amanda was the President of the campus NAACP and served as Scholarship Chair of the National Society for Collegiate Scholars. Amanda just completed her Master’s in Political Management at The George Washington University, there she was actively involved in the Toastmasters Club as well as The Black Graduate Student Association. Some of Amanda’s professional work experience includes working at our Nation’s Capital for Texas
Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson through the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and then working for the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. After leaving Capitol Hill she went on to work for one of the top 5 companies to work for, Facebook; in their public policy division in their DC headquarters.
As a selected participant of the Claudia L. McKoin Public Service Leadership Training Academy, Amanda gained training in public policy development and skills to increase the number of women running and elected into public office. In DC Amanda was selected for a two year term with the Young Women’s Leadership Council we she helps execute the mission of providing women and girls of color in high need communities in the national capital area with the resources and support necessary to achieve personal, educational and professional success. Amanda currently works for the Administrative Office of the United States Courts in the Human Resource and Policy Division as a Program Analyst where she implements tools to attract millennial talent to work for the federal government. She currently resides in Hyattsville Maryland and enjoys going to church and volunteering at a women’s shelter monthly and being active with her sorority Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated.
17. Javicia Leslie – Hampton University
Javicia was born to two military parents in the Augsburg, Germany. When her parents split she relocated back to her mother’s home state of California. After a few years in Cali, they ventured back east to live in Columbia, Maryland and then PG County where she grew up. Even as a kid, Javicia was a performer at heart. Participating in more plays and dance recitals than she could count. She has always had knack for the stage and cameras. I inquired about modeling. She lightheartedly told me, “I actually consider myself a performer and it just so happens that I like taking pictures. That was never something I was going after, but I do enjoy photography and being in the picture.” We both laughed. I’d agree that “Performer” is a great way to describe Javicia’s wide array of talents.
Javicia and I met up in Los Angeles. Sunny West Hollywood to be exact. We sat down in her cozy studio apartment which from her description, symbolized the grind and sacrifice of a young actress. I recognized the seating area from her Youtube talk series. Her homemade “Set,” I liked it.Javicia is a performing arts stand-out and is widely recognized by Hamptonians as the 2008 Miss Hampton University. Currently, Javicia is a burgeoning actress with a ADD web series, multiple commercials, and a couple notable film roles under her belt. The entertainment industry is grueling. What #Shines about Javicia is that she took a leap of faith out of her comfort zone in DC to pursue her passion 3000 miles away in Hollywood. Javicia’s blog, Fashion, and branding prowess have also gained her a healthy following. I am happy to feature a talented star in the making on this week’s #ShineHard conversation.
16. Johnny Bailey IV – Hampton University
Johnny is the executive director of 501(c)(3) non-profit, The #ShineHard Family and an operating partner of creative agency, Bold Management Group based in Washington, DC. Raised by his grandmother in Petersburg, Virginia, Johnny learned early to find a way or make a way. He started by winning two state championships in high school Track & Field and earned a scholarship to Hampton University before breaking the HU and MEAC Record in the 60m dash. Johnny graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sports Management and earned a Master’s Degree in Marketing from Virginia State University.
Following graduation, Johnny began his career in the sports industry working as a client service rep at NFL sports agency Corporate Athletic Management. Years later he was selected as an intern for Nike ID’s grassroots marketing team in Chicago. Johnny stayed with Nike for 4 years and contributed to events like NBA All-Star, Super Bowl, and World Basketball Festival. He gained a knack for culture building, campaign execution, and creative marketing.
In 2014, Johnny founded The #ShineHard Foundation, a network that equips students with the skills and relationships to turn any passion into profit. The mission is to recognize, educate, connect, and inspire. In its 3rd season, #ShineHard features the nation’s leading millennials of color via web series and then unifies them as members to uplift and serve our communities. At Bold Management Group, Johnny serves as a marketing consultant to startups and entrepreneurs. His most notable client being Track & Field Phenom, Candace Hill, the fastest youth sprinter of all time.
Johnny exited the corporate world to build a legacy through entrepreneurship. He hopes his journey will serve as a reminder that anything is possible. Because when it’s all over, the world will ultimately remember you for how you served, how you loved, and how you made a difference. If in fact you did.
15. Jamila Mustafa – Delaware State University
Jamila is a graduate of Delaware State University, living in New York City. Jamila works for network Black Entertainment Television. She is enthusiastic, open minded, and hardworking with all projects I dedicate my time to. Ambition coupled with determination is what fuels my drive.
With over 10 years of marketing, television production, editing, writing and on-camera hosting I am fully devoted to my craft and pride myself on learning something new each day.
Oprah Winfrey once said ” You only get out of life what you have the courage to ask for”. My one request is to have an opportunity to show you what I’m made of. Will you accept my offer?
14. David Castain – Howard University
“David Castain is the kind of person movies are made about” says the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.
David Michael Castain II is a Howard University class of 2013 graduate with a Bachelors in Speech and Applied Communication and a minor in Sociology. After becoming a 2014 graduate of the number one Master’s program in the world for Public Relations and Corporate Communications at Georgetown University, he continued his academic journey by returning to his Alma Mata, Howard University. He is now in the second year of his Ph.D. program in Sociology, with a concentration in Medical Sociology and Social Inequality where he continues to be a student leader.
Originally from Los Angeles County’s own Pomona, California he has built a reputation for his ability to excel in any direction. Growing up David became a “product of his environment” growing a lust for the streets. Due to the conditions of his everyday life, he consequently became gang affiliated. Since the age of fourteen he had been in and out of the judicial system. He was eventually incarcerated with a felony charge of the direct violation of California penal code PC 211: Armed Robbery. After many court dates he took a deal which granted him time served and was sentenced to an additional 8 months of home monitoring. During his stay at the California Correctional Facility he promised himself as well as his family that he would never go back. It was then that he decided to turn his life around. Being a man of his word, he applied and was accepted to Morehouse College, Howard University and Clark Atlanta University. He decided to attend Howard University, the Mecca. Knowing that hard work and dedication were the only two things that would keep him there he departed the streets and entered the world, it was either go hard or go home.
Since his life changing decision he has become a trendsetter to his peers, branding himself as a Social Engineer and Event Specialist. The “Washington Times” has named him “One of the country’s best promoters” as he organizes events with celebrities such as Diddy, Chris Brown, Lil Wayne, Trey Songz, Drake, Nicki Minaj, Young Jeezy, T.I, Rick Ross, Waka Flocka, B.O.B., T-Pain, J. Cole, Robin Thicke, Usher, Wale, Gucci Mane, Tyga, Ludacris, Cash Out, Kirko Bangz, Lil Kim, Miguel, Lloyd, Jeremih, Jamie Foxx, Fabulous, Soulja Boy, Roscoe Dash, Tank, Yo Gotti, 2 Chains, Trina, Mario, Bow Wow, Teairra Marí, Juicy J, Big Krit, Rich Kids, Lola Monroe and Teyana Taylor. Sports Superstars such as Lebron James, Shaquille O’Neal, John Wall, Nick Young, Navorro Bowman and Prescott Burgess. He has also done events with Soca Artists like Benjai, Kes, Blaxx and the world’s number one Soca artist Machel Montano. Others include Amber Rose, Rocsi Diaz, Kim Coles, Joi Brown –Pitts, Richelle Cross, Valeisha Butterfield and more.
He managed, organized and executed voting campaigns for Vincent Gray in his victorious Washington, DC 2011 mayoral election as well as President Barack Obama in his 2012 Election.
His accomplishments have led to much recognition, he had a Black History Month feature on Fox News and in media outlets such as Ebony Magazine, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, The District Chronicles, The Hilltop newspaper, Washington Times and many more.
While laterally being a full-time student, David managed to create his own consulting firm, David Castain & Associates. Using the momentum created from events, he launched the David Castain & Associates firm to develop unique plans that address all issues involved in the growth of a business: strategy, marketing, pricing, innovation, product development, organization, leadership, and economic competitiveness. Some of his most notable clients have been, Warren Buffets Cort Furniture, Franklin Park Homes, the second largest apartment complex on the East Coast, Fuel Pizza, Z- Burger and FrozenYo, the fastest growing yogurt chain in the nation’s capital.
While serving as Resident Assistant in Howard University’s George Washington Carver Hall dormitory for three years he developed a passion to give back, “enlighten minds and change realities”. Time spent giving back is what Castain credits as most valuable to him. Committed to changing the lives of others in his down time he founded the David Castain Foundation, a non-profit geared towards changing the future of youth who do not have the necessary resources to achieve success. The foundation allows inner-city youth within the Washington, D.C. area to pursue a positive escape in their free time. Activities include: mentoring, tutoring, college application assistance, and resume writing workshops.
David is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., NAACP, and Lambda Pi Eta National Communication Association Honor Society. He is also the recipient of the Georgetown University Public Relations and Corporate Communication’s 2014 “Most Creative Award”; he was also a speaker at Howard University’s John H. Johnson School of Communications’ 2013 Commencement.
His favorite quote, “See the invisible, feel the intangible, and achieve the impossible”, by Winston Churchill embodies his outlook on life.
13. Kamau Mandela Marshall – Texas Southern University
Class of 2010 | Journalism & Public Affairs | Field: Government/Politics & Communications
Kamau Mandela Marshall, an artful melding millennial who’s an Organic Gentleman with a heart focused on uplifting the global community, as an effective change agent. He is a natural-born leader, who enjoys the people while being a compelling servant in multiple communities in different capacities.
Born in Chicago, IL he came of age in Baltimore, MD, Pittsburgh, PA, Birmingham, AL, Columbus and Atlanta, GA and currently resides in Washington, DC. A graduate of Houston’s Texas Southern University (TSU), he has adroitly applied his BA in journalism and public affairs in tandem with a masters of public administration from TSU to an increasingly impressive array of endeavors. It is this institution where he honed his civic engagement and political acumen as student government executive vice-president, debate team member, drill sergeant in the university’s Ocean of Soul band program, and a co-founder and vice president of the TSU Collegiate 100, a mentoring machine intentionally focused on black and brown youth’s access to broader opportunity structures in education, politics, volunteerism and civic responsibility. Kamau remains a proud member of Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated.
These early involvements as student leader have catapulted him into a rich array of relationships networks and educational opportunities domestic and global. He is currently working on a second masters’ degree from Harvard University, after having completed the school’s National Security, Strategy and Press program in 2013 and successful stints as a United States Senate Press and Legislative Fellow and a Truman National Security Congressional Scholar.
His significant expertise in communications, media relations, government, political campaigns and community engagement have been deployed in the political, public affairs and corporate sectors. His vision and personal mission have been enriched by travel to Senegal, The Gambia, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, France, and Germany. Kamau most recently worked as Special Assistant to Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, a Leading Democratic in the U. S. House of Representatives, encompassing 7th Congressional District, which is over half of Baltimore City and surrounding areas. Prior to this role, he served as the Press Secretary and Special Assistant at the pharmaceutical firm known as Cote’ Orphan under the leadership of the former Director of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Office of Orphan Products. Before Cote’, he worked at SKDKnickerbocker, a leading strategic and political communications firm. His broad and diverse experiential base also includes working as a middle school social studies/history teacher and the 2012 Obama for America campaign.
Kamau Mandela is committed and passionate about his purpose in life. He will continue to be an effective communicator and progressive relationship-builder with and for the people. He is determined to use his many accomplishments to cultivate more inspired cadres of youth leaders, especially among black and brown males domestically and globally. Kamau plans to continue working in government and communications. In the future, he plans on working globally in the tech industry in government affairs and in higher education as a university president, while being a global philanthropist advocating for HBCU’s. One of his goals is to become a public servant as well. Kamau believes that “Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.” – Muhammad Ali
12. Asia Nache’ Martin – Alabama State University
Asia Nache’ Martin is a 21 year old Dance Major from Decatur, GA. She is currently a senior at Alabama State University in Montgomery, AL where she will be a part of the first graduating class of students to obtain a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Dance in the university’s history. Since becoming a student at ASU, Asia has led the Sensational Stingettes as captain for two consecutive seasons, being voted “Best Captain” both years through the HBCU Dance Corporation. Asia’s love for dance landed her on the big screen in 2014 when she was cast as a dancer in the movie Drumline 2: A New Beat.
In 2015, Asia was featured as a dancer alongside star of vH1’s T.I. and Tiny: The Family Hustle, Zonnique Pullins in her music video, “Nun For Free” ft. Young Thug. Asia has also had a taste of reality television being a part of the cast of Lifetime’s “BAMA STATE STYLE.” When she’s not in school or performing, Asia travels to different cities teaching and cultivating young dancers; many hoping to one day follow in her footsteps. Upon graduation, Asia hopes to tour the world as a professional performer, choreographer, and teacher of her craft.
11. Angel Rich – Hampton University
A fourth-generation Washingtonian, Angel Rich was raised in a life insurance sales family with a passion for financial literacy. Rich graduated from Hampton University with six honors and studied at the U. of Int’l Business and Economics in Beijing, China. In 2009, Forbes recognized Rich for winning Prudential’s national case competition and selling her groundbreaking Generation Y marketing plan.
Becoming a Global Market Research Analyst for Prudential, Rich conducted over 70 financial behavior modification studies. In 2010, Prudential’s CEO requested Rich to lead Obama’s Veterans Initiative Research Study and her recommendations were announced in the State of the Union.
In 2011, Rich conceived the first African American Financial Experience Study which now serves as the benchmark across the financial services industry for marketing to Blacks. In 2012, Rich was recognized with a Presidential Achievement Award for Exceptional Research and Innovation for helping Prudential save $60 Billion, rising from #16 to #4 in Service in one year.
As Community Outreach Advisor, she helped create NJ financial literacy curriculums and managed Junior Achievement. Separately, Rich completed missionaries in Kenya and Uganda. Accomplishing her goals, Rich resigned to found The Wealth Factory in 2013.
The Wealth Factory designs financial literacy and workforce development education technology games. We walk users from birth to retirement in 12 interactive modules to exceed the Personal Finance Common Core Standards. The Wealth Factory is now the official financial literacy tech partner for Bank on DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking serving 15,000 youth annually, an Obama Connect Home Content Partner for 28 states, and named the top 9 edtech company of 2015 by the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools.
In 2015, Rich was honored to speak at the Congressional Black Caucus, win Industrial Bank Small Business Competition, become an advisor to the District’s Financial Literacy Council and announced as DC Spokeswoman for Wells Fargo.
10. Marquette King – FVSU
Marquette King is an American football punter for the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Fort Valley State. King is the only current African American punter in the NFL and has been since the beginning of his career.
King attended Fort Valley State University, and in his senior year was an All-First Team Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference member and the 2011 FVSU Wildcats Most Valuable Player. During the 2011 season King punted 80 yards against Bethune-Cookman University. During the 2011 season, King led the Conference in punting with a 43 yards per punt average, with 21 punts landing inside his opponents’ 20-yard-line. Sixteen of his punts were for 50 yards or more.
After the 2012 NFL Draft, the Oakland Raiders signed King to a three-year deal to compete with and eventually replace veteran Shane Lechler. In training camp, King took most of the punting snaps due to an earlier injury to Lechler. King impressed the coaches enough to be kept on the roster but was placed on injured reserve for the entire 2012 NFL season. With Lechler signing a free-agent contract with the Houston Texans, King competed for the Oakland Raiders punting job during the 2013 preseason with experienced veteran Chris Kluwe. The regular season job was left to King after the Raiders cut Kluwe at the conclusion of the preseason. On February 29, 2016, King signed a five-year, $16.5 million contract extension with the Raiders.
9. Itisha S. Jefferson – Spelman College
Itisha Jefferson is a native of Brooklyn, New York and a daughter to Jamaican immigrant parents. As a first generation college student, Itisha first attended SUNY College at Old Westbury, but transferred to Spelman College in 2008 because she wanted a school that challenged her to exceed her own highest personal and intellectual expectations and goals. To Itisha, Spelman has a legacy of educating, nurturing, and empowering women citizens of the world, specifically women of color, who have a passion to focus on global change, leadership, and service. She wanted to continue this distinguished legacy and build strong sisterly bonds with women who shared the same desire as her, “To Make a Choice to Change the World.”
At Spelman, Itisha was very involved on campus and in the Atlanta community. She was a participant in the Spelman College Ethel Wadell Githii Honors Program and was selected as a participant in the Health Careers Opportunity Pipeline Professions Program (HCOPP), a program that enhanced her exposure to medicine and also improved her leadership skills in a professional setting. She held several leadership positions on campus as was the President of Beta Kappa Chi National Scientific Honor Society, interim President of the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students (MAPS), Treasurer of the Health Careers Club, 2009 1st Attendant of Morehouse College Health Careers Club, and held various positions in the Student National Medical Association such as the Pre-Medical Liaison of SNMA International Committee, Writer of SNMA Publications Committee, where she published an article on HIV Prevention and and Awareness in JSNMA in 2010, and a member-at-large of SNMA Pre-Medical Advisory Committee. When she was not on campus, she was very involved in the community as a Big Brothers and Big Sisters Program mentor which lasted for three years.
Itisha, not only has the passion for medicine, but also research and community and global health. She has researched at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, University of Cape Coast in Cape Coast, Ghana as a Minority Health International Research Training (MHIRT), Merck and Co., Inc and Spelman College. Her abroad experiences consisted of volunteering at the University of Cape Coast Hospital in Cape Coast, Ghana where she promoted health education and community health outreach in the villages, and volunteering at the Helping Hands Community Hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal where she witnessed how gender inequalities influenced women’s autonomy in decision making on healthcare. Because of her work she was awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Award for her commitment and dedication to service.
Additional honors and awards Itisha received while at Spelman were: the competitive United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Merck Undergraduate Research Scholarship, which provided research opportunities at Merck and Co., Inc for two summers and additionally a $30,000 tuition grant, the UNCF Anheuser-Busch Better World Leadership Scholarship because of her commitment to the community, UNCF Medtronic Foundation scholarship because of her academic excellence and commitment to pursing a health-related field, UNCF Amtrak Travel Scholarship, UNCF Jack H. Skirball Leadership Scholarship program, a year-long program through Morehouse College, where she addressed significant issues and challenges confronting emerging leaders who must negotiate the difficult matters of tolerance, respect and appreciation. She was a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Research Fellow, and Facilitating Academic Careers in Engineering and Science (FACES) Undergraduate Research Scholar, and was awarded 1st Place for her research project on the potential environmental impact of arsanilate and arsacetin on human intestinal Caco-2 cell lines at Spelman College Research Day in 2010. She was also inducted into several honor societies such as the Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED) Health Pre-Professional Honor Society, Sigma XI: Scientific Research Honor Society, National Society of Leadership and Success Honor Society (NSLS) Presidential Status and Beta Kappa Chi National Scientific Honor Society.
After she graduated from Spelman College in 2011 with a B.S. in Chemistry, cum laude, she was honored to be a recipient of the prestigious J. William Fulbright fellowship. As a cultural ambassador, Itisha realized education is valued not only for simply bestowing knowledge, but because education provides opportunities throughout life. For two years, she taught English to elementary students in South Korea. Outside her teaching duties, she engaged in the Korean culture and community by living with a homestay family, taking Hanji art classes, being inducted into the community service organization, The Lion’s International Leo’s Club, and tutored North Korean Defectors, where she received an award from the Korean-American Educational Commission for her commitment to service.
When she returned to the United States in 2013, she worked at Bedford Stuyvesant Family Heath Center as a Patient Navigator for the Affordable Care Act in Brooklyn, New York. She received a scholarship from the Harold P. Freeman Institute where she attended an intensive training program to learn how to provide access to healthcare to vulnerable populations in her community. As a Patient Navigator, Itisha worked in addressing the health disparities that were in her community, and increased the access to healthcare by enrolling uninsured clients into a healthcare plan and educated them on the value of having a primary care physician.
During the end of 2014, she transitioned to her new role as a Clinical Research Study Coordinator in the Melanoma and Immunotherapeutics Service Department at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, New York. At MSKCC, she worked on protocols that have a positive impact on BRAF and NRAS mutated patients. She managed several therapeutic and biospecimen protocols, helped patients and families work through the complexity of clinical trials, collected data on trials seamlessly, ensured that good clinical practice was followed. Working at MSKCC exposed her to the perils of melanoma and how deeply it can affect one’s family. She has gained a better understanding of melanoma, and their various treatment options such as immunotherapy and target therapies.
Itisha envisions herself as frontline community-centered provider, who will work with vulnerable populations that are often underserved and overlooked; and to be involved in community health care initiatives. Her goal is to work toward incremental, sustainable change that can reduce the health risks of underserved communities, such as her own, and to improve their quality of care.
Recently, Itisha was accepted to several medical schools and will attend the Loyola University: Stritch School of Medicine in Maywood, Illinois, but deferred her enrollment to August 2017 because she has been selected as the only recipient and first African-American winner of the American Medical Student Association Mabelle Arole Fellowship in Jamkhed, India. As a newly selected fellow, she will live in rural India for ten months and work with the non-profit organization, The Comprehensive Rural Health Project (CRHP), as she implements programs that can reduce and eliminate health disparities in rural India, in addition to, learning more about rural health care, community and global health and India’s community and culture.
Outside her free time, Itisha is very involve in SNMA as was the past Membership Liaison of MAPS for two years, where she helped spearhead an online program to support high school and college students who are interested in medicine called So You Want to be a Doctor webinar series. She also attends opera shows, plays tennis and is a mentor to a Junior High School student through the iMentor program for two years and is a committed volunteer of Project Sunshine, where she spends time and bring sunshine into the lives of children who are facing medical challenges by restoring a crucial sense of normalcy in a medical environment.
In 2012, Itisha was nominated for two HBCU Buzz Awards: HBCU Buzz Scholar of the Year and HBCU Arts and Science Buzz Merit Award. She was awarded the HBCU Arts and Science Buzz Merit Award.
8. Joe W. Dillard Jr. – Virginia State University
Joe W. Dillard Jr. was born in Richmond, Virginia to Joe Dillard. Sr. and Teresa Dillard. At the age 6, Joe’s parents moved to Norfolk, Virginia, where he attended Tanners Creek Elementary; Camp Allen Elementary; Northside Middle and Granby High Schools.
Mr. Dillard began his undergraduate studies at Virginia State University where he pursued a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Management. He then transferred to Norfolk State University where he completed his Bachelors of Arts degree in Political Science. He is currently enrolled in Norfolk State University’s Graduate Program with the concentration in Urban Affairs.
In 2012, Mr. Dillard was appointed Chairman of Housing and Community Planning for Norfolk State University NAACP Chapter where he advocated to guarantee the rights of students and staff to live in any campus controlled housing without regard to race or color. He demanded the enforcement of community housing for both students and staff. When necessary, with approval of the Association, he sponsored direct action programs as a means of publicizing and correcting intolerable housing conditions. He sought to eliminate segregation and discrimination and to improve the general housing conditions for Blacks and other minorities in the community at large.
In April of 2013, Mr. Dillard was appointed Chairman of the Economic Development Committee of the Norfolk Branch NAACP where he promoted the growth of entrepreneurship among African-Americans and was charged to increase employment opportunities with private and public entities.
In September of 2013, Mr. Dillard was appointed 2nd Vice President of the Norfolk NAACP with the core responsibilities of providing support to the President, Branch and community and to ensure and maintain communication with the Executive Committee, sharing relevant information for branch meetings.
In October of 2013, Mr. Dillard assumed the title of was appointed Interim President and served the remaining term of the outgoing President. On November 10, 2014, he was elected President of the Norfolk Branch NAACP, becoming the youngest president in the United States. He continues to serve with the vision of uniting the community as one.
He serves as a prominent and active member of Mount Gilead Missionary Baptist Church in Norfolk, Virginia located in the Norview area.
He serves as a board member on the following boards:
• Mayors Commission on Poverty Reduction
• Elizabeth River Tunnel Crossing
• Community Advisory Board Norfolk Public Schools
• Eastside Community Development Corporation
• Co Chairman for the Virginia NAACP Resolutions Committee
• Region 7 National NAACP Credential Committee Member
• Outreach Chair- Norfolk Democratic Committee
• Political Director- Hampton Roads Young Democrats
• Global Shaper – Norfolk Hub
7. Chase B – Howard University
Houston, Texas native Chase B found himself in his college apartment watching countless YouTube videos of Kid Capri when he finally decided that he not only wanted to become a DJ, but a legend in the craft.
He began his journey by playing local clubs in the Washington D.C. area and then packed his bags and headed North to New York City. Upon his arrival in the Big Apple he got his start in the DJ community by playing opening sets at a number groundbreaking concerts at venues such as Terminal 5, Webster Hall, Santos Party Haus and more.
With his reputation growing at such an amazing pace, Chase got a phone call to spin a set at the world renowned 1OAK NYC. After his first set, the flood gates opened. Since then he has become a regular at both 1OAK NYC and Up & Down NYC, headlining these prestigious venues sometimes as often as three times a week. As a result of his undeniable taste in so many different genres of music, he’s often been the maestro at parties for celebrities such as Rihanna,
Kanye West, Naomi Campbell, Leonardo Dicaprio, Madonna, and so many more. With such an outstanding resume in New York City, Chase began to receive bookings all over the country and beyond, often playing in Miami, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Toronto. On top of all of this in his schedule, when Chase isn’t traveling and playing clubs, he’s probably on tour with his childhood friend and platinum-selling recording artist, Travis Scott. The two grew up together and Missouri City, Texas and have been performing at shows together from the beginning of both of their careers.
This lifestyle mixed with the passion that Chase has for his craft make him one of the most versatile and talented DJs in the world.
6. Vincent Le’Carl Berry II – Morehouse College
Vincent Le’Carl Berry II (born August 1, 1985) is an American singer-songwriter, composer and record producer who has written/produced for: Canadian Pop Sensation, Kreesha Turner, Shana Wilson, Grammy-award winning Karen Clark Sheard, Kierra Sheard, Tim Bowman Jr, JDS, Gayle Brannan, Mitchell Jones of legendary gospel group Commissioned. He was born and raised on the eastside of Detroit, Michigan. He currently resides in Atlanta, where he is pursuing is B.A. in Business Administration, with a concentration in finance at the Morehouse College.
5. Jason Crain – Howard University
Jason is currently living in NYC and is the Sr. Account Manager at Shazam, the world’s leading media engagement company. He is from Kansas City, Mo, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Morehouse in 2009. Post college he spent 3 years at Google doing digital consulting for CPG firms like L’Oreal, Clorox, and LVMH. He also managed Google’s community outreach in certain arenas of the advertising and entrepreneurial industries.
In early 2013 Jason became the co-founder of Partpic, a mobile application that uses visual recognition to identify, match, compare and facilitate the purchase of industrial supplies. Jason Crain leads daily operations and marketing strategy for Partpic. Bringing a firm understanding of consumer operations and specializing in sales, marketing and business development, Jason has helped in production ideation, business structure, customer and talent acquisitions.
4. Amber Hughes – Tennessee State University
Amber Hughes is a Tennessee State University standout and former Frederick Douglass High School star. She’s ranked fourth in the nation in indoor track and made the national outdoor team.
Hughes believed she’d be a cheerleader, but following a growth spurt, she then met a track coach, and her life changed forever. Hughes is a Tennessee State Tiger, and made it to the 2016 Olympic trials.
3. Leland Tyler Wayne (Metro Boomin) – Morehouse College
Leland Tyler Wayne was born on September 16, 1993, in St. Louis, Missouri. He attended Parkway North High School. After a brief stint playing bass guitar in his middle school band, Metro first started making beats in the seventh grade at age 13, when his mother bought him a laptop and he got a copy of the music production software FruityLoops. In high school, Metro churned out five beats a day. Initially, Metro wanted to rap, and started making beats so that he could have music to rap over, but after deciding that he liked making beats more than rapping, he put his full attention into production. As he continued to develop his production sound, while still in high school, Metro began to utilize social media properties, like Twitter, to network with bigger artists and submit beats.
During high school, his mother would often drive him for over eight hours from St. Louis to Atlanta to collaborate with artists he met online. One of the first artists he worked with was a rapper named Tay Don which then led him to collaborate with rapper OJ Da Juiceman, Alley Boy, Gucci Mane, and eventually Future, an artist that he continues to associate with to this day.
Metro first started traveling to Atlanta in the 11th grade to pursue a career in music, and, in an interview with XXL, Metro says that Atlanta rapper OJ Da Juiceman was the first popular artist to rap on his beats, a string of collaborations that ultimately led to Metro meeting and working with Gucci Mane during the summer between his junior and senior years of high school. Upon graduating high school, Metro moved to Atlanta to attend Morehouse College, studying Business Management, but he ultimately chose to take a hiatus from school after a semester, because the schedule demands of a full-time music career became too much to balance. Since, Metro has collaborated with artists including Gucci Mane, Nicki Minaj, Ludacris, Future, Yo Gotti, Wiz Khalifa, Chief Keef, The Weeknd, YG, Young Jeezy, Meek Mill, Travi$ Scott, Ace Hood, S.A.M., Young Scooter, Young Thug, Rich Homie Quan, Trinidad James, Migos, and more. Metro also regularly collaborates with other producers, including Sonny Digital, TM88, Southside, Zaytoven, Young Chop, and DJ Spinz.
Metro has also worked extensively with popular rapper Future. The two first worked together on a song called “Hard”, included on DJ Esco’s Welcome 2 Mollyworld mixtape, and have collaborated on numerous songs since, including two singles from Future’s sophomore album, Honest, the album’s lead single, “Karate Chop”, and title track, “Honest,” co-produced by DJ Spinz.
2. Jeff Henderson – Hinds Community College, Florida Memorial University AND Stillman College
Henderson was raised in McAlmont, Arkansas. While attending Sylvan Hills High School, he won the long jump at the 2007 Arkansas Activities Association Class 6A state high school track and field championships with a 7.293 m (23 ft 11 in) jump, followed by a 7.32 m (24 ft 0 in) jump at the 2007 Arkansas Meet of Champions (MOC) high school meet. Since 2007, he maintains the state high school decathlon record in the 100 meter dash with his 10.84 second run. He previously held the Arkansas MOC record in the triple jump with a 14.403 m (47 ft 3 in) leap.
He went on to study at Hinds Community College, Florida Memorial University and Stillman College and competed for the Hinds CC Eagles, Florida Memorial Lions and Stillman Tigers track teams. At Hinds CC, Henderson became the NJCAA Division 1 2008 indoor national champion (long jump), 2008 outdoor national champion (long jump, 100 meters), and 2009 outdoor national champion (long jump and 4×100 meter relay team). After finishing second in the long jump 7.94 m (26 ft 01⁄2 in) at the 2010 USA Indoor Track and Field Championships, Henderson competed at the 2010 IAAF World Indoor Championships, where he finished in 20th place with a 7.64 m (25 ft 03⁄4 in) jump.
In his junior year at Stillman College, he earned All-America honors at the 2013 NCAA Division II Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships by winning the 100 meter dash and long jump titles.
At the 2013 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, Henderson won the silver medal in the long jump with a 8.22 m (26 ft 111⁄2 in) jump and represented the United States in the 2013 World Championships in Athletics in Moscow, Russia. Henderson competed in the long jump at the 2014 IAAF World Indoor Championships.
At the 2014 adidas Grand Prix, Henderson set a new meet record in the men’s long jump, leaping 8.33 m (27 ft 33⁄4 in). Henderson set a stadium long jump and personal record of 8.43 m (27 ft 73⁄4 in) at the 2014 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the Hornet Stadium in Sacramento, California, taking first place in the event. He also jumped 8.52 m (27 ft 111⁄4 in), however it was wind-aided at +3.5 m/s. After winning the Glasgow Grand Prix, Henderson is a 3-time 2014 IAAF Diamond League winner in the men’s long jump.
At the 2015 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, Jeff jumped 8.44 m (27 ft 81⁄4 in) to earn a silver medal. At the 2015 Pan Am Games on July 22, 2015, Henderson won with a leap of 8.52 m (27 ft 111⁄4 in). He had previously jumped 8.54m, but the jump was not counted as it was wind-aided (+4.1 m/s) (28 feet, ¼ inch). At the 2015 World Championships in Athletics – Men’s long jump, Jeff jumped 8.36 m (27 ft 5 in) in the prelim to advance to the final, and jumped 7.95 m (26 ft 03⁄4 in) in the final to place 8th.
Henderson took first place in the long jump in 8.58 m (28 ft 13⁄4 in) at 2016 United States Olympic Trials (track and field) and took first place with a 8.38 m (27 ft 53⁄4 in) leap in the long jump at the 2016 Summer Olympics. He dedicated his victory to his mother, who has Alzheimer’s disease
1. Deshauna Barber – Virginia State University
On Sunday, June 5, 2016 Deshauna Barber became Miss USA 2016 and the first woman actively serving in the United States Army Reserve to win the title. Deshauna is 26 years old and was born in Columbus, Georgia. The daughter of an Army Master Sergeant who served in the United States Special Forces (now retired), she relocated multiple times growing up to states including North Carolina, Nebraska, Minnesota, Virginia and Washington, D.C. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management from Virginia State University, Deshauna went on to complete her Masters of Science in Computer Information Systems at the University of Maryland.
Following her studies, Deshauna returned to live in Washington, D.C. where she was most recently working as an IT Analyst for the U.S. Department of Commerce. In 2011, Deshauna commissioned as a Quartermaster Officer in the U.S. Army Reserve and is currently a Logistics Commander for the 988th Quartermaster Detachment Unit at Rockville, Maryland. Deshauna is passionate about serving the men and women in the U.S. military, and as Miss USA, will specifically focus her efforts on PTSD treatment for soldiers returning from deployments and suicide prevention in the Armed Forces.
The 2016 HBCU Top 30 Under 30 list is a decorated group of talent. This year’s class is comprised of Olympic medalists, entrepreneurs, award-winning healthcare professionals, poets, professional dancers, grammy-nominated artists, and the list goes on. These leaders represent all of the historically black colleges and universities over across the country. Their success, and the variance of industries underscores the immense value of HBCUs. Hundreds of names were submitted and several leaders completed the application themselves. This years class has much to celebrate, congratulations.