Congrats to The Class of 2022

Recently I was asked by a Woodland Hills School Board Member to give the commencement speech, I accepted, rearranged my work schedule, and then recently the superintendent rescinded the offer. That doesn’t mean that the students aren’t going to get said speech. I even thought things through to the point of sending the speech in…

Why Waiting Your Turn is Overrated and Representation Matters

Why I Joined the Malcolm Movement In my last year as Mayor of Braddock I outdid myself. I played kickball with the Woodland Hills Students, judged a dessert contest at Braddock Farms, spoke at the Women’s March on the City County Steps, greeted folks again and again at Greater Valley Community Services Vaccine Clinics, ran…

Pittsburgh’s Black Exodus: Where Are They Going?

Pittsburgh’s Black Exodus: Where Are They Going? If we know anything from the last census and The State of Black Pittsburgh report, we know that Pittsburgh is losing Black People. That same report told us that there was a higher infant mortality rate for Black Women in Pittsburgh. They also found that Black People face…

The Sousa-ical: A Song and Dance of Revitalization

“Community revitalization,” “Farm to table,” and now Chef Kevin Sousa is packing up and moving on to Mount Oliver to open his newest Mount Oliver Bodega Restaurant. The Post-Gazette write-up describes it as rustic cuisine. They’re breathing life into an old building. They’re on to new adventures. Sousa is excited about cooking again. If this…

Millennial Mayor Check In

As it’s the last year of my term and it’s been a while since 29-year-old me was sworn in as the youngest mayor in Braddock History. I’ll never forget being whisked into council chambers and being briefed about all things Braddock Affairs. There was an array of conversations all at once. The police department oversaw…

This Year Halloween Needs to Be Treated with Care

Halloween is coming. There’s no stopping it and kids all over the country are expecting at the very least a costume and some candy. Many cities and boroughs are choosing to opt-out of Halloween as when it all comes down to it, The United States Covid-19 response has been nothing short of a nightmare. Tracing…

No Fracking Way

Fracking wasn’t around years ago or we didn’t really know about it. Truth is, we don’t really know much about it now either. It’s just drilling into the Earth for oil, it’s quite frankly, The American Way. I guess wealth is measured in oil. When do we take a look at the planet and say,…

Is Braddock the New Lawrenceville?

“I can make your neighborhood the next Lawrenceville,” this probably well-intended developer told me a year ago. I chuckled staring at this stranger and replying, “We don’t need another Lawrenceville.” Another developer called a few months later wanting to build riverfront housing where, “people can park their boats.” I also chuckled. “Some people don’t even…

American Hurt Reflects on America’s Faults

It’s not our fault America is the way that it is but at some point we must have the strength to look at ourselves and acknowledge our past so we can fix the present and future. What’s American Hurt about? It’s not an anti-American poetry book but it’s a look in the mirror. It’s me…