In addition to photography & filmmaking; I work to have a positive impact on my community. I have concentrated my efforts on empowering others through a variety of organizations and programs. The arts are often my method for making an impact. Locally I have worked with the Boys & Girls Club, Strickland Youth Center, and Mobile Arts Council to impact youth & the arts.
Over the years I have seen the gap in the economic empowerment and how this affects women and children. In 2017 I founded Focus Empowers with the mission to encourage, educate and empower women and girls by bringing impactful programming the Gulf Coast.
Besides working on my own projects, I am often asked to work with community leaders and organizations to help them leave their mark.
SPEAK UP - 2018 Strickland Filmmaking Program / Film Debut
In this documentary short we honor two of Strickland Youth Center's agents of change. Coach Terri York, affectionately known as the Candy Lady and Joseph Ferguson, better known as Joe the Barber; create cultural connections and affect real change.
What a great honor it has been for us to work again with the kids, Judge Edmond Naman, and his staff. We hope you enjoy watching as much as we enjoyed making the film.
Camp Girl -July 18th, 2018
Photo by Sara Boone
Huge success! Our Focus brand along with Distinguished Young Women hosted 14 fifth through seventh grade girls from Mobile and Baldwin Counties at our first ever Camp Girl event. With the help of our sponsors and dedicated agents of change, we provided a day of art journaling, science experiments, creative writing, team building, debating, internet safety, and even an intro to budgeting. Even though it was only a one day event, it was encouraging to hear the girls ask at the end of the day if they could "come back tomorrow."
A big thanks to: Distinguishing Young Women & Mott MacDonald; as well as Porsche Blount, Kendra Haskins, Ardith Goodwin, Shauna Meiri, Jennifer Cashman, Lila Lasecki, Jennifer Eckman, Emily Blejwas, and Sara Boone
Strickland Youth Center Filmmaking Program - July 5th, 2018
We spent the last 2 weeks of June at James T. Strickland Youth Center teaching filmmaking and photography for the 'Speak Up' program. We worked in conjunction with the 'Brush UP' program with Soynika Edwards-Bush. This is our 2nd year and the program is an emotional rollercoaster. A lot of these kids are coming from horrible situations that often seem hopeless. These are not bad kids. They are great kids who are facing things we can only imagine and as a result, sometimes make bad decisions.
The kids met citizens making an impact like Red Cup Revolt: Art, Lifestyle, & Culture, Ferguson First Cuts Our Southern Souls and BackFlash Antiques
They had a private tour and learned about their city at History Museum of Mobile and with the Gulf Coast Ducks. They were exposed to the arts via Alabama Contemporary Art Center, Mobile Museum of Art, & Mobile Arts Council. They learned about all the music careers available to them at 93BLX
What gives me hope? The incredible staff at SYC who are in the trenches fighting for these kids everyday. Every time I ask a staff member why they are there, the answer is that they love kids, want to help kids. What gives me hope? The amazing community members who show up to inspire OUR kids.
These are OUR kids Mobile, Alabama
Thank you Mobile County, Alabama for making this program possible. Equipment provided by Calagaz Photo & Digital Imaging!
Strickland Youth Center Filmmaking Program - September 8th, 2017
Directing the Speak Up program for James T. Strickland Youth Center was incredible. It was an honor to work with these kids and to tell their story.
chARTing New Directions Documentary Short - September 2015
So honored to have done this documentary short about chARTing New Directions for Mobile Arts Council.