• Little Miss African American Scholarship Pageant Announces Nationwide Registration For 20 Year Anniversary ! Jay Leno Gives a Nod to Little Miss African American Scholarship Pageant on The Tonight Show


    Los Angeles – It was 1993 when actress/ choreographer Lisa Ruffin caught the vision that she would positively impact the lives of aspiring little African American girls, instilling in them a strong sense of self-esteem and purpose. She produced her very first Little Miss African American Scholarship Pageant and has never looked back. Today, twenty years later, she has not only influenced thousands of lives, but several of those little girls are now grown women who credit the pageant as a focal point in their lives.

    The Little Miss African American Scholarship Pageant will celebrate 20 years of success on Sunday, August 4, 2013 at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles, CA. Ruffin has announced a Nationwide Registration and will select 50 young participants, between the ages of 6 and 12, for this landmark celebration.

    The pageant has seen a host of celebrity participation over the years including Laila Ali, LL Cool J, Jamie Foxx, Tarji P. Henson and Chandra Wilson. Jay Leno even paid a holiday visit to Ruffin and the pageant participants this past Christmas, acknowledging the wonderful work Ruffin has done over the years with a surprise visit from China Ann McClain, the star of the Disney Channel’s “A.N.T. Farm” and Tyler Perry’s “House of Payne.” The visit aired during a special holiday highlight segment on “The Tonight Show.”

    “I am humbled that God has allowed me to continue to do this work for 20 years now,” reveals Ruffin. “I’m so proud of all my girls and am so looking forward to this pageant being a extra special celebration!”

    Young hopefuls, age 6 – 12 can submit their application for participation at

    For further information call 818-570-0631 or email Littlemissaa2013@gmail.com. Please include a picture of the contestant with her name, brief information and any available links.

    For a visual overview of the pageant and its impact on contestants, go to
    http://vimeo.com/15018101.

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  • Filmmaker, Jordan Thierry Tackles Black Parenting Crisis with The Black Fatherhood Project Documentary Premiering During Black History Month

    Washington, DC – Filmmaker Jordan Thierry will kick off Black History Month with an insightful perspective on the rising dilemma of fatherless Black families when he debuts his introspective documentary, “The Black Fatherhood Project” in February. Community leaders in the Bay Area will host the film’s premiere Thursday, Jan 31 at The Grand Lake Theater in Oakland, CA and a national premiere will held online the February 1, 2013 at BlackFatherhoodProject.com with free viewing.

    The Black Fatherhood Project poignantly reveals a history much more complex and profound than what is often seen on the surface of events. Directed and produced by Thierry, The Black Fatherhood Project unravels the roots of Black absentee parenting through the telling of his own story, interviews with prominent historians, and dialogue among a diverse selection of dads. The discussions include personal experiences, inspirations, and insight on how communities can come together to ensure the power of a father’s love is not lost on America’s Black children.

    “The film explores the issues that continue to plague the Black community,” says Thierry. “It digs deep into history to identify how Black families functioned before slavery, how it and subsequent discrimination affected black fathers’ involvement in their families, and its impact today.”

    Nationwide, 67 percent of Black children live in single-parent families, predominantly with the mother. This factor alone increases the likelihood of living in poverty, low educational achievement, incarceration and abuse. This ratio has tripled since the 1960s, growing in correlation with drug crimes, prisons, and income inequality to create today’s challenges for the Black family.

    The first-time filmmaker adds, “The film also reveals that while the statistics may be discouraging, there is a strong faction of black men that are breaking the cycle of fatherlessness in their families and inspiring others to do the same.”

    The online premiere will begin at 9:00 AM Eastern Time on Friday, February 1st and can be viewed at the film’s website BlackFatherhoodProject.com. The website also provides informational resources on fatherhood as well as a list of reputable mentor and advocacy groups.

    An activist-filmmaker, Thierry began producing the film in 2006 while attending graduate school for communications at Howard University. His approach to filmmaking is informed by his community involvement to advance social justice and empower young men of color to be successful.

    Thierry, who formerly served as national coordinator for The National Coalition on Black Civic Participation’s Black Youth Vote and taught elementary school in Newark, NJ, founded the nonprofit Better Man Productions, to address the growing demand for movies about issues concerning men of color. Better Man Productions is focused on inspiring a culture of positive fatherhood and masculinity in communities of color through short, shareable online movies.

    The premiere screening at the Grand Lake Theater is the kickoff of The Black Fatherhood Project’s grassroots campaign to bring communities together by inviting people to host their own screening events in 2013 and inspire people to action through personal transformation, youth mentorship, and civic engagement. The audience will have a chance to meet and ask questions of the film’s director, Jordan Thierry, after the film. The Black Fatherhood Project will hold a second showing at Oakland-based community organization Youth UpRising for the public on February 4th at 4pm. Other upcoming screening event locations this year include Newark, NJ; Tampa, FL; and Columbus, OH; where the filmmaker will partner with local institutions to spark dialogue and inspire action around fatherhood.

    January 31st Event Hosts include: Cedric Brown, Ludovic Blain, Mario Lugay, Chandler Hoffman, Tiffany Price, Dennis Quirin, Asha Wilkerson, Lauren Veasey, Justin Davis, Marc Philpart, Kisasi Brooks, Demond Walker, and the Stanford Black Alumni Association of Northern, CA.

    Jordan Thierry is available for interviews. Contact Edrea at edmedia@dogonvillage.com

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