“This year I made somewhat of a mantra… which is to move with intention,” says Patrice Benn, of G98.7 FM. “This is an intentional personal development move for me to just have a personal night out meeting different people and to have a conversation about ideas and concepts and whatever anyone is passionate about.” And that’s what most attendees filling up the second floor of Toronto’s Harlem Restaurant came for as well.
Twitter handles and passions are scribbled on nametags. Media affiliates, authors, real estate brokers, film producers, police officers and more find themselves casually jumping right into conversations explaining what they love and how to connect with them about it.
“We are going to profile our heroes… we are going to do networking events, it’s going to be black focused, but anybody is welcome to come.” – Ricardo McRae
It is exactly what Ricardo McRae, executive director at Who’s Who in Black Canada, wanted when he, his team and Carl Cassell launched the event series. “This is why we do things like Who’s Who in Black Canada,” he says. “We are going to profile our heroes… we are going to do networking events, it’s going to be black focused, but anybody is welcome to come.”
Suits and ties shaking hands with people in jeans, relaxing and eating catfish, talking about how to bridge media and television networks with art on the streets of Toronto. This is one example of the types of conversations heard throughout the night, as all the faces of the movers and shakers of Canada, especially representing the black community, come together to network and build.
It is an amazing way to start off the year and begin a #NewNarrative.
Words By. Emma Kombora & Photos By. Iris Gill