“At the end of the day, I want to know that I’ve done something to make this city a better place to live. Birmingham has so much to offer. We keep growing and getting better. It’s a city where we suffer the sins of our fathers, but we can keep working to change peoples’ attitudes and outlooks. You can’t change everyone, but if you can change one person you’ve done something worthwhile.”
Alana Baumann and Samra Michael are the creators of She Well Read, a podcast with the mission of empowering women by encouraging them to invest in themselves and others. The best friends share their love for reading by discussing their book picks chapter by chapter, mixing in anecdotes from their personal experiences and engaging with guests about current events. In this conversation, the pair talk about how they’ve cultivated their own creative passions before and
Jeff Nixon is Festival Co-producer and the event coordinator for Sidewalk Film Center + Cinema and serves on the Board of Directors for AIDS Alabama. The seasoned event producer shares with us how 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic have impacted his work at the end of what would normally be a busy month of organized gatherings to celebrate PRIDE, the shifts Sidewalk has made in their programming, and how our community can continue to support
Dr. Adrienne Starks is the founder and CEO of STREAM Innovations, a nonprofit dedicated to fostering young innovators, particularly in underserved schools and communities. The CO.STARTERS graduate shares with us her passion for science and the arts and her work as an AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) Ambassador focused on spotlighting women working in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) in the media.
Erica Chisolm is a fine artist and muralist who has a vision of bringing art, beauty, and inspiration to pedestrians in Black communities — highlighting surrounding businesses, encouraging walkability, and adding value to the neighborhoods Erica describes as “culture-rich and art poor.” With a mission to help others realize their opportunity to dream, the Urban Impact fellow and National Black Arts Festival award recipient is painting her way through Birmingham’s historic Fourth Avenue Business District.
Eunice Elliott is a standup comedian, writer, and journalist. Formerly a sports public relations expert and news anchor, Eunice decided to pursue her passion for bringing people together through comedy and her series of children’s books based on her two dogs, Sugar Baby and Bella, that teach lessons of empathy and inclusion for all ages. Eunice hosts a podcast called “Oh No, Girl Yes” about her experiences and observations on dating as a single woman
T. Marie King is an activist, facilitator, organizer, and volunteer. Serving on the core coalition for the Jefferson County Memorial Project and the board of the Greater Birmingham Arts Education Collaborative, T. Marie has combined her passion for the arts with her purpose of advocating for social change. Her most recent venture is Local Voices Network, a community-driven platform that shares the stories of those whose voices often go unheard.
Duquette and Morgan Johnston are the husband and wife team behind Woodlawn’s welcoming and eclectic boutique Club Duquette. The Johnstons share with us their response to the coronavirus pandemic, its effect on their store operations, Morgan’s art, musician Duquette’s touring and writing, and how the two are finding opportunities to step up in our community.
Adeeba Khan is the co-owner of Shu Shop, known for its array of sakes and Japanese whiskeys, artfully delicious menu offerings, and clandestine ambiance. Shu Shop — and Adeeba — were already beloved downtown mainstays pre-pandemic, but it’s her resourcefulness, adaptability, and dedication to staff and community that has made this nightspot shine brightest during dark times.