Imani - #BlackPower
Roots: St. Albans, NY
Pin Drop: Valley Stream, NY
New Yorker Status: 23
Occupation: Public Relations Coordinator
Uniqueness: African American
What was your hometown like growing up? Was it predominantly white, black, a mix of both? I grew up in an all-black neighborhood where family was such an important aspect of the community. Everyone knew everyone. Truly a great environment to live. The parks and recreation centers were always filled with kids - whether it was after school or on the weekends. Sometimes I wish I still lived there because of how great it was.
Who in the black community (dead or alive) do you admire the most and why? Besides my mother, I would probably have to say Oprah Winfrey. Not because she's one of the richest women in the world, but because of her drive and determination. With her being such a force in the communications industry it gave people like myself - young black girls - the belief that we could and would make it big in this crazy world.
Beyonce has somewhat deemed herself to be the un-appointed 21st century civil rights and feminist leader for black women - how do you feel about this? I think it’s great! She’s someone women of all ages can look up to as motivation. She’s not just a performer; she makes it a point to address the many issues our community is going through with the use of her music, as well as her strong influence across the globe. Not many celebrities are willing to take that risk and do that.
Break down your ethnic background. I am simply African American. It's funny because I get asked this all the time and people never believe my answer. But yes I am just African American, not mixed with anything else.
Have you ever personally experienced racism? If so, when and by who? Thankfully, I have never personally experienced outright racism. But it has happened to my family members and friends. With Trump being the next president I feel it will open the doors for people to be downright disrespectful and racist to whomever they feel deserves it.
Photographs by: Frank Chiodo