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    PROFILES ON BLACK CANADIANS

    Profiles

    Three years ago Ainka Jess was having a chat with some other women around the office. The topic was sports, and many of the women said they didn't feel comfortable either talking about sports or engaging in conversations about sports. Especially if they were around their male colleagues. “A lot of them said they kind of felt like they to ask for permission to just be a part of the conversation,” says Jess. With 12 years experience in media and communications, and being a huge sports fan herself, Jess thought she could do something to bridge this gap. She's4Sports was…

    In October 2018 Weyni Mengesha returned to Toronto as Soulpepper Theatre’s Artistic Director - making her the first woman and person of colour to sit at the helm of the city’s largest non-profit.

    Neke Ibeh pronounced Neh-keh is a bioinformatician at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. She was born in Bulgaria to Nigerian parents, and migrated to Canada at an early age. Growing up Neke recalls her mother asking only one favour. “Do well in school and represent God in all you do.”

    When you hear the name Young Animal, food is probably the last thing that comes to mind. But Adisa Glasgow - owner of this restaurant with a controversial name, is all about the food, serving up traditional Trini street fare with French and Italian twists.

    Dr. Kenneth Montague is a well known dentist, curator, and respected collector of works by local and International contemporary African artists. He works behind the scenes in Toronto's art world as one of the AGO's Board of Trustees, and as founding director of Wedge Curatorial Projects; a not-for-profit arts organization that supports Black emerging artists.

    With a one-hundred-and-fifty-year head start in marketing beer to guys - as a guy’s product, Ren Navarro disrupts the white male-dominated Canadian beer industry, with diversity and inclusivity.

    Ajoa Mintah, daughter to Ghanaian immigrants and founder of Four All Ice cream in Kitchener, Ontario, started off her career in what was a stable, secure field as a licensed engineer doing product development in the automotive industry. After about six years of working in that field she moved into consulting. Almost a decade later she made a major shift.

    For the last 20 years, photographer and new media artist Wayne Dunkley has been asking people in urban centres to confront negative perceptions and biases around Black identity. His latest project, #whatdoyoufeelwhen, is an interactive work of public art that prompts for honest reactions to thousands of images of his face postered in four major cities across Canada.

    PHOTO CREDIT: Katherina Limo You could write a novel length interview on someone like Jibola Fagbimye. An entrepreneur and artist of Nigerian descent who immigrated to Canada at the age of 21, he seems to be constantly juggling all the parts of his being in a successfully rhythmic orbit.

    06 Jan 2019

    In celebration of the 215th anniversary of Haiti's Independence on January 1st, ByBlacks highlights two women’s journey to self-discovery.

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