JAMES CRAIG PHOTOGRAPHY

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At the Opera House's "Phenomenal Women" Event – We renew our acquaintance with a phenomenal woman…

Mar 17, 2019

The two images above – on the left is a picture I took of a very serious (reflected in her eyes) young student at Lincoln University in 1989 or 1990. On the right is the same "phenomenal woman" this past Saturday (a quick iPhone grab-shot) when she was the Keynote speaker at the Phenomenal Women event at our local Opera House. Afterwards there was a book-signing at the Havre de Grace Colored School where I was able to give her a copy of my very limited edition book sporting her portrait.

I was 45 at the time, a local who enrolled at Lincoln to get the final three semesters of credits I needed for my degree in History – I was fortunate enough to be a year without work at half pay (all of this being a long story). Lincoln worked with me to achieve my goal of finishing this up in one year. I was often on campus with my camera – always the B&W photographer – because the school found a way to let me out of the "gym requirement" by having me  photograph the theater-arts class for them that semester.

Nan spent a lot of time on campus with me because Dr. Jane Bond-Howard, with whom I took a number of classes that were so small that she held them in her office, would let Nan sit in and take part. Dr. Bond-Howard, by the way, was/is definitely a "phenomenal woman". 

Nan and I wound up spending a good deal of time in the common room (not sure what they actually called it) and met a number of students, who all made us feel welcome and not out of place at all. Karsonya – then calling herself Akilah Fatima, and her constanf friend Lisa were very kind and considerate to what must have seemed to such young ladies, the same age as our youngest daughter, as just a couple of boring old white people.

Thirty years later we find that Dr. Karsonya Wise Whitehead would be giving the keynote speach a the Phenomenal Women event just down the street at the Opera House. Wow. I couldn't begin to list here all that this woman has done. She has three books, her own radio show and is recognized as a force for good and empowerment in our capitol. And she is an inspiring speaker. Karsonya is nothing less than what I call a force of nature – and a "phenomenal woman". She has become one of those people who tempt you to brag about knowing.

That very serious young lady has become, in spite of the gravity and importance of her mission in life, a charming, obviously fulfilled and happy, phenomenal and beautiful woman. Her smile is contagious and lights up a room. We came away with two of her books and can't wait to read them. Here are a couple of links:

     Web Site:  https://kayewisewhitehead.com

 Twitter:  https://twitter.com/kayewhitehead

FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/kaye.w.whitehead

Radio: WEAA 88.9 FM Monday thru Friday 3 to 5

As loaded as all of the web sites are, I'm looking forward to checking out the radio show…