A native of Tuskegee Institute, Alabama, I came of age during the tumultuous '60s, as the United States grappled with questions of equal protection under the law for all of its citizens. Growing up in Tuskegee was a unique experience like none other. The town provided a natural backdrop for segments of Return of the African Diaspora – my first historical/political novel of fiction, and its sequel - Exodus Village, which is scheduled for release in the fall of 2010.
Back in the day, Tuskegee was a shining example for black America; we had numerous role models who empowered themselves to take full control of their destiny. As violence ran rampant in the southern United States, our college town of less that 15,000 people provided a safe haven for its predominantly black citizenry. Our sanctuary was created after a former slave named Lewis Adams, managed to convince white politicians to fund and establish the "Negro Normal School in Tuskegee," in exchange for voter support in their State Legislature re-election bids. From that point on, life for blacks in Tuskegee sharply contrasted the realm of terror that became the norm in many other areas of the South, once federal troops were recalled from protecting former slaves only thirteen years after the Civil War ended.Our physical security yielded results too - we had college professors who argued successfully before the Supreme Court, and thwarted attempts to dilute the black vote. We had friends whose fathers were fighter pilots during World War II; we shared the birthplace of Rosa Parks, the civil rights icon who became the catalyst for ending discrimination of all kinds around the world; and many other examples of what was possible for black Americans.
Politics has continued to play an important role in Tuskegee since the college was founded in 1881, but I inherited my love of politics from my father, also a Tuskegee alum. I spent many weeks of my childhood glued in front of the television set with him, watching as the democratic and republican parties formally nominated their candidates for U.S. President. Later, I earned a bachelor's degree in Political Science from Tuskegee, and in my professional career, I have co-managed the U.S. House of Representative's Office of Legislative Information (Bill Status) on Capitol Hill, and served as congressional aide to civil rights icon and U.S. Representative John Lewis. I also managed protocol and assisted the Ghanaian CEO, whose international company brought historic state-of-the-art wireless telecommunications services to sub-Saharan Africa.
In 2009, I launched 'N Gratitude Publishing Company and plan to use it as a vehicle for introducing aspiring new authors to the worldwide market, and to continue enlightening the world about the small Alabama town that I still call home.
I am the mother of two adult children, and currently reside in Atlanta, Georgia.