First Miss Black Genez Selected at Blue Jeanz Pageant 2016

On February 20, 2016, history was made at the first annual Miss Black Genez – Blue Jeanz Pageant (MBG), when Tanya Ebonie was selected as the first Miss Black Genez.

The MBG Pageant, presented by RARE Genius Productions (Cre- ative Arts Collective) is the first African Centered pageant for Black women across the African Diaspo- ra, developed by Jeff and Jenavia Weaver of Philadelphia to:

1) establish a beauty standard based on the natural genetic fea- tures of Black women;

2) create an event that encapsulates the common ancestral, genetic and cultural (drum centered) thread shared by Black people and owned by Black women across the Diaspora;

3) exalt the physical image, the cultural vitality and prominence of Black wom- en to emancipate the minds and spir- its of“little Black girls”who are taught (consciously or unconsciously) that they are ugly from birth and therefore, have no self-worth.

The Miss Black Genez – Blue Jeanz Pageant 2016
The six finalists were challenged to develop a business plan to be presented in a two minute “eleva- tor speech” format, a Black/African history presentation, a personal talent or passion presentation, as well as a group dance routine.

Ebonie, after bringing down the house with her spell bounding presenta- tion of Miss Sojourner Truth’s speech, “Ain’t I A Woman”, emerged as the favorite among the panel of judges called the “Kingdom Keepers” consist- ing of: Iya Oyin Hardy, Priestess of the Ifa Traditions; Ogbonna Hagins, Founder of Philly Word Magazine; Andrea Lawful Sanders, Educational Consultant and Advocate; Eric Marshall, Community College of Philadel- phia (CCP) Honors Student.

The event was held at Arcadia University’s, courtesy of Founder/CEO of the Black Male Development Symposium, Dr. Doreen Loury. It was co-hosted by Marjani Clark, lead vocalist for the local Soul/Rock band “Johnny Popcorn”, coordinator of the “Kakewalk”, and whose image donned the ad and logo for the MBG Pageant.

Her co-host was the talented Maurice “Fresh” Thomas, a Philly native, CCP student, Spoken Word artist and local special events host. The head- line musical artist was Soul artist Jenae LaRoi who kicked off the event with a soul-stirring performance of songs entitled “Dreams” and “5/5 No Compromise”, accompanied by Jeff Weaver, visionary for the MBG Pag- eant. Musical direction was provided by Speed Ridah Productions CEO Aubrey “Speed Ridah” Stanley, accompanied by Tyree “Top Dollar” Dumas, Founder & CEO of the Dollarboyz. Other performances included “Levi the Traveling Master Drummer” Jeff Weaver and co-host Clark, who delivered an original song, entitled, “Legendary” about the “swag, sway, style and sophistication” of Black women.

The BGQ’z (Black Genez Queenz)
The MBG Pageant, steeped in its African Centered format, was developed in the spirit of unification, negating the divisiveness found in “western style” pageants where in one winner is chosen and the other candidates are losers. Each of the MBG finalists were crowned as queens and am- bassadors of specific areas to unify cohesiveness among Black women. Collectively, they are all known as the “BGQ’z” or “Black Genez Queenz” and in 2016 consist of:

Tanya Ebonie – Miss Black Genez 2016 – Associates Degree in Communi- cations/Journalism at Delaware County Community College, Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Temple University (Dean’s List; three years in AmeriCorps service programs; Owner of “Chosen’s Treasures”. Future: web series of reading stories by black authors, publishing a children’s book, starting a youth non-profit.

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Akela Mitchell – “Rhythm” Bennet College graduate May 2015. Applying to Law School Fall 2017. Strives to unify Black women through the common- ality of rhythm and drum centered culture.

Miss Black Jeanz Queens

Sherrelle Sweat – “Business” Asso- ciates Degree CCP transferring to West Chester University. Imple- menting the concept of “SuSu” to the BGQ Network.

Olasade Johnson – “Gifts” Studying Psychology at CCP. Songwriter, Poet, MC.

Robin Brown – “Knowledge” Studying Nursing at CCP. Presented on “the Berlin Conference” at the Pageant.

Tiffany Savage – “Grace” Model, Actress and Yoga Instructor. Strives to role model grace and beauty “the African way” for young Black girls.

The Miss Black Genez Pageant was spawned from a song written by Mr. Weaver, “Black Genez Make Blue Jeanz Tight” which is also a chapter in his book, “5/5 No Compromise: The Inalienable Human Rights & Souls of Black Folk!”

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Eric Nzeribe