Tag Archives: women

{Exclusive} An Intimate interview with Marie Wilson, former President & Founder of The White House Project and new President Tiffany Dufu

2 Apr

After 13 years, the reins have been handed over at the White House
Project and Tiffany Dufu could not be more perfect for the position.
Marie Wilson, former President and Founder of The White House Project
and new President Tiffany Dufu sat down with RBRW’s Jacquelyn Aluotto
for an exclusive interview covering important issues from the very
beginnings of what is a most extraordinary organization, the change
over in leadership and the
future direction of the White House Project.

 

Jacquelyn speaking with Marie and Tiffany

 

 

Dufu and Wilson really have a special union. This is evident in their
interaction with each other. Meeting through a mutual friend who was
mentor to Dufu and one of Wilson’s oldest friends – Wilson knew that
she wanted Dufu on board right away and admitted to worrying about
losing such talent: ‘when your friends send you somebody it is usually
someone who you’re going to like…I was completely awed right away’.

 

 

Current White House Project President Tiffany Dufu

Whenever Dufu is asked the question; ‘How did Marie find you?’ Her
response is simple: “Marie Wilson had her eyes open… Marie has a gift
to see beyond [physical attributes] and see you as a viable leader. She can see your
skills and your qualities before you see them yourself.” Dufu has no
qualms in speaking about Wilson with admiration for her integrity,
honor and vision, although the feelings appear to be mutual.  Wilson
added, “This is the heart of what this organization is all about – to
see people. When somebody sees you – you think better.”

 

The White House Project is an organization that essentially enhances
public perception of leadership in the areas of politics and business.
It has changed how women’s leadership in America is talked about by thinking
outside the box and using popular culture, media and research to reach
countless Americans all across the country. 

 

RBRW will be covering the White House Projects  9th Annual  EPIC Awards – April 7th in New  York  which honors Outstanding Efforts to Promote Images of Powerful Women in Pop Culture.

At this event Marie Wilson’s legacy will be honored.

Stay tuned and view our exclusive interview with Founder and former
President Marie Wilson and new President Tiffany Dufu.

 

 

 

 

written by Francis Bobongie

 

The White House Project:

The White House Project is a non-profit organization which aims to advance women’s leadership in all communities and sectors—up to the U.S. presidency—by filling the leadership pipeline with a richly diverse, critical mass of women.

For more information about the White House Project visit
their website at www.thewhitehouseproject.org

 

Footnote: More Pictures from this exclusive interview can be seen on Facebook.com/RBRW.org check out the link http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=38023&id=137995686238191&l=b38869b0f1

Follow us on Twitter.com/RBRW

“God Save the Queens” Hat workshop | ‘Women’s History Month’ Event

16 Mar

A word from RBRW Team Member Fran

Francis Bobongie

I had never even heard of Paterson and certainly didn’t realize its place in history; and before you think I am entirely ignorant – I am from Australia, and Paterson New Jersey had never rated highly or had even made my list of places to visit here in the United States.  There are some treasures to be found in Paterson and I had the pleasure of visiting these over the course of two days.

Right now if you were to visit Paterson you would spend a lot of time held up in traffic. It is however, well worth the wait! With all the recent rain the ‘Great Falls’ that I had no idea even existed, right here on the East Coast have transformed into an amazing torrent of water cascading down all part of the Passaic River below. The sound and the beauty of the water, with the mist combined makes for an awesome experience that just tantalizes the senses. The warm weather has allowed for perfect conditions, and in just the right light, very prominent rainbows add to the picture perfect scene. People have been visiting from near and far with the odd helicopter zoning in to get a closer look.

Just on the next block on Market Street, is the Paterson Museum. This truly is one of the most exciting places I have ever been to. As you walk through the most amazing wooden doors I have ever seen, the transformed warehouse is host to some of the most ‘well preserved artifacts’ according to a visitor I met from Weehawken. There is a plethora of information available on a myriad of firsts. Did you know? Paterson was the first planned industrial city in America; John P Holland built and tested the first submarine in Paterson; and known as the Ryan NYP, the first engine that flew a plane from New York to Paris non-stop was built there. These are only the things that I can remember off the top of my head! My visit had me on information overload. At its height Paterson was an amazing and thriving industrial city.

It was here that I also met Mohamed Kahalil. He is the first African American artist from Paterson to have artwork displayed in the White House and the first Arab Egyptian Muslim to have designed the Christmas ornament for the First Lady Laura Bush. It is only fitting that he should work in Paterson at the Museum and joins all the other ‘firsts’ that are there too.

You can find Mohamed at the Museum working on a collection of pieces that will eventually be displayed in glass cases in front of prominent buildings in Paterson. These pieces stand tall and each one is different in its own right, however his signature symbol is very prominent: An eye with a spot in it reflects one of Mohamed’s own eyes that has a freckle.  In one way or another you can find this signature trademark on all of his designs. His artwork uses everyday materials that are recycled and reused in one way or another. He has the creativity and vision to see in something as simple as a glass bottle, a piece of wood or a rusty nail; something that can potentially look amazing. He divides his time between the Library and the Museum with his artwork displayed in both places along with a number of venues in both New Jersey and New York.

The RBRW team had the pleasure of attending “God Save the Queens” Hat workshop organized by curator Cristina Deutsch by Paterson Free Public Library and in line with ‘Women’s History Month’. This workshop looked at the significance of the church hat in the African American culture. The women were privy to an engaging talk, highlighting the transformation of the ‘church hat’ throughout history and its importance in making women look beautiful and feel special for one day of the week.

Women who attended the workshop were able to make their own hats from an assortment of donated materials and the opportunity to afterwards have a makeover using Mary Kay makeup products. There were hats with flowing tulle, flowers, feathers and shells. The creativity was brilliant and the women not only had fun socializing but also learnt a little historical information and were able to produce a final product that they could be proud of and take home. The workshop coordinators were supportive, helpful and encouraging and made these women feel good about themselves and with their efforts. Following the workshop, the women were ready to pose for photos and talk about their designs when interviewed.

To transform something is to make a “marked change, in appearance or character and usually for the better.” My visit to Paterson showed me just that – a transformation: in nature, people and just within the city in general. Whether transformation occurs simplistically or in its complexity the process is certainly evident in Paterson and is exciting.

Waterfalls, art and hats, seem like an unlikely way to highlight transformation.  However, this whole idea of transformation resonates well with me and what RBRW is all about. Our non-profit organization helps with a holistic healing process of making over battered women from the inside out. It’s amazing how something as simple as a makeover in every sense of the word, can see reach through the complexities of the soul and transform a person: discovering inner beauty and radiating it outwards.

A WORLD THAT HAS LOST HUMANITY IS A WORLD AT WAR— International Women’s Day Message from RBRW Creator Jacquelyn Aluotto

8 Mar

Happy International Women’s Day:
This is a very personal and honest blog for me. People always ask me why I make documentaries on the issues I do and where my passion comes from. I never really answer all the aspects of that question. I always say because I want to make a difference in the world and help people. Help people break the cycle of abuse, violence, poverty, ignorance etc… All of this is true but the reason behind that is as a young girl I watched my young Mom never really love herself and see how wonderful she is because she was abused. I watch my Mom now and sometimes I get frustrated as to how she doesn’t know what a kind and special, beautiful person she is. My Mom has endured so much and she could have been a bitter hateful woman but instead she is so compassionate. She is just only hard on herself.  She is her worst enemy. As a daughter of course this has always hurt me because I love my mom so much and her happiness is important to me. I have always wondered if people were not abused what they would turn out to be. Or if abused victims had received the proper help, care, and counseling how they could become empowered.

I have learnt through my films and my life with my family and being an activist that helping is healing. Well at least it is for me and so many others. I have learnt, seen, and felt; that in the shelters and safe havens that I film in that if you give victims the proper care, tools, counseling, and support people will become empowered and free. Free from a mind that they deserve nothing and cannot escape a past that haunts them: that there is so much more of the world for them. That love really does exist and being beaten on emotionally and physically amongst other things is not love and not their fault: that they and we all deserve as human not to exist but to live.  To thrive, laugh, cry, and cherish life because it is a gift. We are all a gift.
I have learnt that I feel comfortable in shelters with these women and children. I admire that they are trying to survive in a world that for some reason is afraid of the power they posses and has done everything to strip them of it and yet they are still here and still trying.  They are still strong, beautiful, and powerful. I sit in awe and want to cry sometimes when the children and teens talk about being raped and beaten. That a 10 year old little girl can become a drug addict to numb herself because she was being prostituted out since she was four years old. But yet she will give me a picture she has colored because she wants me to have a gift. After all they have been through they still have so much love in them. It amazes me. It is my inspiration and I hope it always is.  What seems to be the worst for these victims is no one believes them or validates what has happened to them except these Safe Havens. Shelters and Safe Havens are crucial to our existence. I think what has happened to this world is pure INSANITY. Civilization happened a long time ago so why are we still acting like savages. One reason is no one does validate breaking a cycle so it will stop from the next generation. Instead we have perpetuated one.
 I have learned of filming, volunteering and being in shelters and safe havens for ten years. We can all break the cycle of violence, abuse, ignorance, rape etc. It is not easy but with love, support and the proper tools it is happening all over the world and it is beautiful. It inspires me every day. It is what keeps me going as a human activist to evoke change. To demand it. Humanity is the most important thing in this world. Without it we will not survive.

 
I ask everyone not just women because the men in my life are amazing and show me love every day. Give love and compassion to one another. Love is the greatest gift we can give to each other and ourselves. In this world we value things over people. It is so sad and we are cheating ourselves. My fiancés does not have a lot of money but the love he shows me is priceless and I would not give that up for all the money in the world. When you have unconditional love it restores your soul. My wish is that we can all find that love for each other and ourselves. Helping is healing and that passion in me is my prayer every day. I hope more and more people join me on this journey.

A WORLD THAT HAS LOST HUMANITY IS A WORLD AT WAR -Jacquelyn Aluotto

A look into Spring | Suzi Chin Spring 2011 Collection

10 Dec
Black Cocktail Dress Spring 2011

On Thursday night I  attended the Suzi Chin Spring 2011 showcase on behalf of RealBeautyRealWomen.com at the lovely Maggy Boutique on 7th ave. Suzi Chin for Maggy Boutique provides style from women size 0-24. Suzi Chin collections usually features about 100 pieces so there is something for everyone. Suzi Chin works in 3 parts. #1 She designs for the present, #2 they fit for last season and #3 they start working on designs for next season. This work ethic is what keeps Suzi Chins designs fresh and trendy. Her designs are young yet sophisticated.

 

The evening went off without a hitch. There were some beautiful bridal items for the Spring 2011 collection that any bride would proud to wear. As well as brides maids outfits that won’t make you cringe.   There is so much attention to detail in each of the dress. Also each print/pattern is custom-made for Suzi Chin.


Great color option for the spring if you’re not a fan of bright colors

Live models showing off the season styles

Bridal Selections

Suzi Chin also carries plus sizes or “women sizes” and they are not just the larger versions of the petite dresses. Which is great. Each garment is made to accentuate the body.

 

 

 

 

 

 

bridal selections

Style # 7160 on the right

The plus size women should feel very confident wearing Suzi Chin who  has dressed Gabourey “Gabby” Sidibe and Mo’Nique.  Suzi Chin has been designing for 25 years, and from speaking with her you can tell she is still very much excited about her line. If you are into color there is something in the Spring 2011 for you. Even if you love your black there are at least 30 or so pieces that will satisfy your love of black.  The thing about Suzi Chin is she don’t just want to be the place you come to get your “special occasion dress” but where you can find an outfit for everyday of the week.  Suzi Chin is a lifestyle brand. This Spring 2011 is one that provides dresses that are comfortable, sexy and easy to wear. Who doesn’t like that?

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

Real Beauty Real Women Overview

5 Dec

Changing Lives –  Red Carpet Media Events –  Celebrity Interviews – Behind the Scenes – Fashion Shows – Charity Events – Music Videos – How To Videos – Makeovers


  • Real Beauty Real Women.com is a content rich website created for the socially conscious fashionista,” bridging the gap between those fashion forward visitors who love the glamour and excitement of the fashion world, and those who want to become more socially active.
  • “RBRW’s exciting and varied content promotes awareness of pressing social issues faced by millions of women and children in this country, with special emphasis on the of plight domestic violence victims. Their mission is to help them to “Break the Cycle” by pointing to a ‘way out’ through a place of safety, education, career help, counseling, practical fashion and grooming tools.  By building self-esteem, self-discipline, and social skills, Real Women everywhere can make the most of themselves, no matter what the obstacles are.
  • Real Beauty Real Women.com is getting a great response from sponsors as well as celebrities, models, designers, and beauty stylists, who want a chance to “give back” by appearing on the show and volunteering their help in turning lives around. Many have lived through, or witnessed the ravages of domestic violence and have broken the cycle themselves. Now they want to inspire others to do so.
  • Founded July 20, 2010, RealBeautyRealWomen.com is the creation of film maker and human activist, Jacquelyn Aluotto, CEO of Pick It Up Pictures and recipient of the prestigious 2010 BOSS Award as a Network Influencer”. The BOSS Network is listed one of Forbes’ 10 Best Career Sites for Women.

  • On one hand, RBRW provides exclusive looks into to the world of glamorous celebrities through in-depth interviews, live event coverage and exclusive backstage footage. Viewers and members are provided with instant exclusive Tweets, social media postings, online photos and instant on-line Red Carpet interviews.  Many of the celebrities, models, stylists and beauty artists are unsung heroes in their efforts to help those less fortunate. They are given a platform to promote their favorite causes and to promote their latest endeavors.
  • Then the team goes into the actual shelters to volunteer in many ways and to help inspire the residents, whose lives have been torn apart. They become the voice of these “voiceless victims.”  This is quite a feat because it is very difficult, almost impossible, for outsiders to build up the trust to be able to enter these hidden safe houses.  The whereabouts of the residents must be kept secret, as their well-being and very lives are in jeopardy.
  • RBRW showcases the poignant, award-winning documentary “Not in My Backyard.” The entire film can be viewed currently on http://www.RealBeautyRealWomen.com/ and is soon to premiere in New York City at a star studded Red Carpet Event.
  • With never before seen footage, this heartrending chronicle tells the touching stories of battered women and children in America, seeking refuge at underground shelters, so named because their location is hidden from the public to keep abusers at bay. The problems of battering and abuse cross all socio economic lines and comprise all races and creeds.
  • “We are the real deal and that is why the media and the press are amazed by this,” Jacquelyn declares.  “I spent seven years in shelters filming and interviewing Real Women and I will continue to do so for the rest of my life. Shelters break the Cycle of Violence.”
  • “Humanity is the most important thing in this world. We all need to start living that way of life,” Ms. Aluotto says, “I have obligations. I have made promises.  I help people who have no voices and are living in fear. Everyone told me it was impossible to film in underground shelters. I did. They also say it is impossible to change the world. It’s not.”
  • Through Real Beauty Real Women we see people helping people and changing lives every day”

Caring for a woman’s soul

4 Sep

Women in the world today, have made many strides. We are women of greatness, and that’s part of the reason why many of us have gone through the struggles that we have. We are each born with a purpose. We have a contribution to make in this world. But if we never come into that place of making a difference, the very people we were placed on this earth to help, will continue to suffer. What’s your purpose?

Because we have something to do, it’s very important to for us to take time to care for ourselves. Women, were created as nurturers. We often find time to do things for everyone else, and nothing for ourselves.

That’s who we are. But wellness should be a priority, because the lack of it can impact every area of your life.  It is when we are feeling a sense of wellness or wholeness, where nothing is missing and nothing is broken that we have learned to take time to care for our souls. The soul matters.

So, how do we define the soul? Soul is the most common translation of the Greek word, “psyche”. Some biblical scholars suggest that a better translation is either, “person” or “self”. In other words, the soul is not PART of who you are, but the soul is your “total self”. We do not have a “soul”- just as we have a body and spirit. We are soul, therefore soul refers to your “whole person”.

Caring for our soul can be defined as the support and restoration of your mind, will and emotions. The restoration of the well-being of a person in his or her depth in totality with particular concern for the inner life. Soul has to do with your inner life. Experience that  you cannot see or touch, but you feel them deep within. When your soul is being cared for, you are addressing the deepest and most profound human aspects of your inner life.  This is important because your inner life, reflects your outer life. Your inner life impacts your character, decisions, responses, moods, relationships, dreams, families, careers.

Thus we must take time to care for our souls. One of the ways that we can do that is by introspection. Taking time to think about what we are feeling, and why we are feeling a certain way. It’s okay to stop and think for a moment about our responses and actions towards people. Sometimes there are underlying reasons why we do the things we do.  Understand your emotions but don’t let them rule your life.  Take time to meditate daily. Journaling is another way to care for your soul. It enables you to write your thoughts, feelings, prayers, goals and dreams. Take time daily to renew your mind with positive affirmations. Surround yourself with people who have positive energy and always listen to your inner voice. Blessings!