Every year my Girlfriends and I look forward to attending the Hey Girlfriend Annual Luncheon. This was my sixth year in attendance and every time has been absolutely remarkable.
This Year's theme was “Build a Better Community “. Ideally, if each person touches one person we can build a better world. I was in the room with so many powerful and bold women this year there were exactly 900 of them.
Every woman should experience this event at least once.
This was the 13th year that the Hey GirlFriend Founder Cynthia Billingslea has put on this Annual Luncheon. All guests were encouraged to wear shades of Purple. which represented ambition, wisdom, and power. Being amongst all the Purple was a beautiful site to see.
Emcee, Comedian, Angel Gaines had the crowd in out their chairs in laughter. And with DJ JiJi Sweet played a little something off everyone’s favorite playlist.
Women were dancing everywhere and I mean really dancing. Music, dancing, and laughter some of God’s greatest prescriptions.
After dancing our hearts out, we got a warm message from our very own Auntie Congresswoman Maxine Waters. She spoke from the heart and let us know it is our time to stand. She made it very clear that this world is tough but Black women are even tougher. Stand for what you believe in, don’t fall for the politicians coming to our churches, holding our babies for photo opportunities with small talk and a fake grin. Make people explain what they are going to do and why. Follow their track records and be sure to educate yourself on them as they do us. In closing, she said, “We aren’t taking shit from nobody”.
We also enjoyed a Girlfriend discussion moderated by Christine Devine, news anchor, Fox 11. Panelists Dawn Shrozier, Founder, DS Fitness and Nutrition, Johnnie Walker, CEO/ Founder - NABFEME, Teri Williams, President/CEO of One United Bank and Dr. Cozette M. White Founder/CEO of My Financial Home Enterprises.
Christine asked the panelist great questions that helped everyone in the audience. As I glanced around, I noticed I wasn’t the only one taking my notes.
I remember hearing panelist Johnnie Walker stating that each woman in the room should leave with new contacts. She also said how important it is to build up one another. If you have a friend in business support them. Go out of your way to support their vision and there are many ways to support without spending a dime.
I’m sure each woman left the event with a fire lit in their hearts fueled by motivation and power.
The special performances were an extra treat Runway 4 Peace and Syncopated Ladies did a spectacular job.
The hallways were filled with Black-Owned business vendors. It was such a blessing to see them being patronized in a major way.
Billingslea is really big on community and she also launched her newest project “Hey Kid Network”. Which is geared to help unprivileged children in inner cities. She also raised funds and gift cards for the Urban Scholar Academy in Inglewood, CA.
I am so happy to be a member of this wonderful organization. I can’t wait until next year and I am very excited to fill some tables this year with my girlfriends.
Thank you, Cynthia, for all that you do, Girlfriend.