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Panel Discussion

Guyleigh Johnson
@kreamgetmoney is baaaack! Creator Guyleigh Johnson is an author, community advocate, and artist, currently working in Ottawa, Ontario. Guyleigh, who is originally from Dartmouth, believes in helping and healing community through words, by creating connections and breaking barriers. In 2017, Guyleigh Johnson published her first works, a collection of poetry titled ‘Expect the Unexpected’, which is dedicated to inner-city youth and the challenges they face and overcome. 🙏🏾 In 2018, she released, ‘Afraid of the Dark’, a novel which follows a teenage girl growing up with identity issues, in a marginalized community. Guyleigh’s other projects include a blog, writing for children (a book about Viola Desmond)and young adults and her writing continues to centre youth and their struggles. Through Connecting The Dots, she has engaged with youth and community, with the mission of sharing common experiences among members of the African diaspora across Canada. Guyleigh continues to create content and engage in spaces where youth will feel represented, heard, and honoured
Shaquille Smith
Shaquille Smith is a Senior Strategist at Colour, a Digital Marketing Agency. After graduating with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Business Technology Management, he started out as an intern and never left! In less than four years, he’s worked his way up to a Senior position in an agency that also has offices in New York and Toronto.
Shaq is used to working hard and excelling at his craft, something he demonstrated during his 5 years as a basketball star for the Acadia Axemen. 🏀 Through his love for the game and passion for youth, he initiated a fundraising campaign to build a new court in his community of North Preston. He got donations of $200,000 to build the professional-grade outdoor basketball court and raised the remaining $103,000 on his own.
He is serious about changing the narrative attached to his historic hometown. He wants to inspire the kids to think bigger and to that end has created a Non-Profit organization to put his plan into action.

 was developed to show student athletes how to use sports to advance their careers and not simply figure out their path as an afterthought. The mission is to support youth, to teach them to navigate the unique challenges they will face as student athletes, and put them in the driver seat of their own careers.
If all that’s not enough, Shaq also sits on the Board of Directors for the Zatzman Sportsplex and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Halifax. 🖤🙏🏾👊🏾
Jade Brooks
Author and Poet. 📖 @theofficialjadehelena has always been a writer. At age 11, Jade Brooks’s poetry was selected for inclusion in Celebration – An Anthology of Young Poets. She continued her love for written expression and would ultimately turn her own story of trauma into healing for herself and empowerment for others. Her first book, called The Teen Sex Trade: My Story, detailing her personal journey as a victim of human trafficking. The book explores themes of coming of age, life in foster care, addiction, domestic abuse, chronic illness and poverty. It is also a story of redemption and recovery – an exploration of a woman’s will to overcome insurmountable odds to create a life on her own terms, and help others who face the same challenges.
Jade uses her knowledge and expertise about human trafficking to bring awareness to the issues in communities across Canada. She is active in individual and community outreach work, and has delivered training and workshops to over 1700 service providers, including law enforcement, social and health organizations and frontline care workers in Toronto. Independently, Jade has also educated hundreds of service providers and youth about the realities of human trafficking throughout Nova Scotia. 🙏🏾
Using her lived experience, Jade is a mentor for other survivors and those who may be at risk of becoming involved in domestic sex trafficking and she continues to support other victims and survivors of sexual exploitation. By sharing her story, she continues to break down stigma and address some of the trauma within communities that result from generations of Intentional systemic barriers that many Black people have faced for decades. 💪🏾 Jade teaches that by embracing our painful experiences and being vulnerable, it is possible to break the cycle and make a conscious decision to live better. Jade is currently preparing to release her second book and is the creator of Motherhood Observation, a blog series that is a “sharp-witted, painfully honest observation of motherhood.” (check it out 
@motherhoodobservation )
Charles "bobby"
Charles Taylor, President of East Preston RatePayers Community Development Association. Charles is a community leader with extensive knowledge in the history of Blacks in Canada, based on personal research and community engagement. He was elected by the community to represent the society and provide a voice to the community members. By providing leadership and guidance to the community, Charles has increased the participation of community members by actively addressing their concerns with barriers to education and employment. "Bobby" is passionate about intergenerational action, connection and collaboration within the Black Community.
Shevy Price is a multidimensional talent; she’s known as one of the most influential underground artists coming from the East Coast of Canada, performing since 2005. @shevyprice has opened for numerous artists such as A Tribe Called Red, Wu-Block, Trina, Waka Flocka, Ghettosocks and more. She has appearanced on albums from AQUASOCKS and Ghettosocks. She also co-wrote and featured in Dean Brody’s ‘Beautiful Freakshow’, which went gold, and she became the first female rapper ever to perform at the Canadian Country Music Awards. Her unique style and thought provoking lyrics have earned her multiple nominations here at home, as a 2x nominee with Music Nova Scotia for “Hip Hop Recording of the Year” and “African Nova Scotian Artist of the Year” and multiple nominations the last two years in The Coast’s #BOH for “Best Hip Hop Artist”, “Best Songwriter” “Most Likely To Make It Big” “Best MC”,
She travels internationally to perform, having been to the Netherlands in 2018 and 2019 for New Skool Rules. 
Shevy also shares her authentic vibes through activism for social justice, advocating for creatives, and through facilitating and delivering workshops within the community (like the Halifax 
@theremixproject ) 🎶
For the last two years, Shevy has been working as a Youth Engagment Activator at TakingITGlobal. 
#RisingYouth is an initiative that provides funding opportunities to youth between the ages of 15 - 30 to help execute community impact projects on a voluntary basis. Created for youth by youth, we are building a program to develop skills and increase involvement through community service. 
Through her strong drive to succeed, Shevy also attends university, while holding it down as a mother! 🖤🔥👑
Corey Wright
LaMeia Reddick
LaMeia Reddick’s resume is exhaustive. Calling her a consultant doesn’t even come close to it. When you add in Community Builder, Activist, Changemaker, Collaborator, Facilitator, it starts to give better focus as to what she’s all about. @thisizmeia has been working in community & building the culture for over 10 years. Almost six years ago, she founded LaMeia Kinnects Consulting with the mission of Creating and Sustaining a collaborative culture of excellence that will serve and empower future generations. 🔥 She’s worked to connect and establish private-public partnerships within the municipality, and use research to tackle large-scale community issues caused by systemic racism. She’s been a consultant and engagement specialist on numerous empowerment projects, and has worked with a range of community partners. A few of the highlights include: Avalon Sexual Assault Centre to prevent sexualized violence of Women and Girls – the Nova Scotia Barristers Society (#TALKJUSTICE), to consult with equity seeking groups under their Access to Justice mandate. Human Rights Commission for Community Conversations to help design an engagement process on the topic of systemic racism and systemic discrimination. She worked with the North End Community Circle, for the North End Change Makers Project to bring together a diverse group of youth and mentors to build cross-cultural relationships. LeMeia also worked as a coordinator for Hope Blooms and African Nova Scotian Support Tutor for the HRCE, as well as the Show and Tell project, designed to support young people in making their community action projects a reality. 💪🏾 LaMeia is also a Leader with the Black Leaders and Learners Advocacy Collective (BLLAC )and ONE North End, and a Collaborator with Bravespace Consulting and Common Good Solutions. The projects and impact will only continue to grow, as will the inspiration! 💫🖤👑
Trayvon Clayton
Trayvone Clayton is definitely a product of his environment. Growing up in Uniacke Square in Halifax, many of his experiences have translated to life lessons. Losing family and friends to gun violence and experiencing racism both at home and on Parliament Hill has contributed to his growth as a community activist, organizer, fundraiser and spokesperson. @tray_clayton4 does all of this in his spare time, because he’s a also a student athlete, on the St. Mary’s Varsity Basketball Team. While studying Criminology and preparing for Law School, Trayvone continues to represent the community and engages with government officials about current issues. He was an active participant in the conversations and protests about Halifax Police Street Checks. He believes that youth need to be consulted in a meaningful way by policy makers, because it's black youth who are being affected the most. 🖤
While attending the Summit of Black Canadians in Ottawa, Trayvone and others experienced racist comments from staff on Parliament Hill. He courageously followed up on the experience on social media, and stood firm in his demand for appropriate action. What followed next was a private meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his issuance of a public apology to those who had been wronged. Since that negative experience in Ottawa, Trayvone has connected with Black Canadians across the country, sharing his voice and contributing to the wider conversation many are having about the need for change. He is intentionally working to erase judgements and racist views, and educate the wider public about the effects of systemic racism on his community, especially the youth. 🙏🏾 His head coach at 
@smumensbasketball sums it up best, “He's that kind of guy that's willing to do things and take chances and try to better himself and also try to better the world around him." 👑❤️🦁
Dena Williams
Deena Williams, an entrepreneur and creative she launched her Vitamine Dee  Entertainment; a community focused entertainment management company that aims to bring people together through arts. By successfully executing events such as the Block Party Project and through collaborations with community groups, non-profit organizations, and businesses, VDE is able to curate unforgettable experiences with impact. in 2019* The mission is to Create, Connect and Share
Andreas Robinson
Andreas Robinson is a pioneer. @exclusivelydre is a Social Entrepreneur, founder of the Infinitus brand and CEO of the Infinitus Group of companies; Infinitus Academy and Limitless Media. Over the past 5 years, Andreas and Infinitus, have directly impacted and engaged 4000+ people, ranging in age from 6 - 75+, through programming, events and workshops! 💥
A former Gold Medal Winning TEAM 🇨🇦 Running Back, Andreas used football and his academic work ethic to attend Phillips Exeter Academy, the prestigious world class preparatory school, in Exeter New Hampshire. Andreas played at 
@phillipsexeter for three years, was named a Boston Globe All Scholastic and became the All-Time Leader Rusher for Big Red, before tearing his ACL in the State Championship game senior year. He underwent surgery and the rigorous rehabilitation process and accepted a scholarship to Simon Fraser University as a Defensive Back. He red-shirted that year, underwent a second ACL surgery, and then transferred to the Sobey School of Business the following year. Andreas successfully switched positions to play Free Safety for the @smuhuskiesfootball , and was named to the East West All Star Game the following year. While at SMU, Andreas travelled to Northern Ireland for the Peaceful Schools Initiative and was selected as a Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Scholarship to complete a 3 month ICT Internship @utechjamaica
In 2018, after 10 years as a student athlete, Andreas made the decision to step away from the Huskies and football, to have more time to devote to Infinitus and his studies. The same year, Andreas was selected as the @DBDLI Ancestral Roots Business Entrepreneur of the Year. In 2019, he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce, Double Major in Entrepreneurship and Marketing, and was awarded the @black_business_initiative Entrepreneur of the Year and continued to build international partnerships, travelling to Egypt 🇪🇬 and Ethiopia 🇪🇹 Andreas consistently uses innovative and unique approaches to connect with youth and their communities and stays committed to disrupting the status quo, in business, organizations, consulting and pushing for authentic engagement on all levels. 🙏🏾🦁👑
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