ACES HIGH

Date posted: October 1, 2022

Las Vegas’ beloved home team excites and inspires the city by capturing the WNBA championship.

Fan adrenaline is still pumping after the Las Vegas Aces — our city’s amazing WNBA team — scored a historic win to capture the franchise’s first championship. Their thrilling game four performance sent the Connecticut Sun packing with a 78-71 victory that launched the Aces into the annals of basketball history. 

The win capped a historic season that also saw Becky Hammon named Coach of the Year and star power forward A’ja Wilson take home the award for Most Valuable Player — a trifecta of triumph matched only by the Seattle Storm in 2010. 

The Aces were first introduced at a 2017 press conference at the Mandalay Bay Resort — where they play home games at Michelob Ultra Arena — after the team relocated to Las Vegas from San Antonio. Their extraordinary success mirrors the team’s now-ubiquitous motto: “All In.” 


LV Aces president Nikki Fargas | photo by Raquel Arnette

Supportive ownership, excellent management and world-class coaching soon earned the team wide popularity among local fans, and Las Vegas Black Image Magazine’s Taste and Sounds of Soul Festival 2018 was one among the first to recognize the Aces — awarding them a Black Image Magazine Honor on the Fremont Street Experience for a revolutionary movement to showcase Black women on a professional basketball team in the Silver State. 

Today, the Aces’ cup runneth over with recognition: Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak declared Las Vegas Aces Day on September 20, 2022, as a championship parade took over The Strip with tens of thousands of fans lining the streets to celebrate their heroes. Meanwhile, Congressman Steven Horsford paid tribute to the team on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. 

The Aces see this victory as just the beginning of a championship tradition, and they’re already eyeing back-to-back Finals appearances and wins. And since this is Las Vegas, only one question remains: Would you bet against them?

photo by Raquel Arnette
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Celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month

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Celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month

By Cassandra Cotton, Nathan Adelson Hospice Community Outreach Manager

Celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month as a time to educate women about breast cancer and early detection and celebrate the many survivors. Breast cancer survivors and those with breast cancer are encouraged to share their stories.

Every October, people all over the world show their support for everyone affected by breast cancer. Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women. Statistics show that around one in eight women in the U.S. will get breast cancer at some point in their lives.

According to Susan G. Komen, an estimated 287,850 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the U.S. throughout 2022, along with 51,400 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer. About 2,710 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in men in 2022.

University of Las Vegas School of Public Health, Division of Health Sciences reports that Southern Nevada had a higher incidence of cancer, more cancer deaths, lower screening rates and lower survival rates than Northern Nevada. Yet, 70 percent of all cancer cases occur in Southern Nevada. Additionally, survival rates for breast cancer in Northern Nevada are near 82 percent after four years, which is roughly the national average; in Southern Nevada, survival rates are almost 10 percentage points lower.

Research and growing knowledge about breast cancer has led to new therapies and targeted treatments that improve outcomes for many people and have replaced the one-size-fits-all treatments of three decades ago. It is research that brings hope to patients facing this disease. In addition, we need to ensure options for patients — especially when treatments stop working.

Palliative Care

Palliative medicine, or palliative care, is specialized medical care focused on relief of the pain, symptoms and stress of a serious illness such as breast cancer. The goal is to improve quality of life for both you and your family. Palliative care is appropriate at any age and at any stage in your illness, and it can be provided along with curative treatment.

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PEACE: Life is to be LIVED!

Date posted:

We all are walking through lives that are either foisted upon us or come from our individual souls. The life that is given is the gift. What we do with it depends solely on the choices we make.

The wish for our life is sometimes a dream only realized when our eyes are closed. Yes, it’s time to stay woke and make all of our intentions reality for the life we imagine. Good intentions feed actions that fuel our desires — so live a life of intention with the matters-of-fact that can be touched and felt. Everything on this great planet is for everyone to enjoy, and your job is to manifest what is often called “The Good Life.”

Many have a problem: they believe the good in life is measured by material wealth and accumulation — and in doing so, bury their joy.

But on the contrary, the joy that is searched for lies within our souls. We walk with Him. And He only wants us to see the beauty in all things that are given. Sometimes the good and the bad are lessons to birth gratitude that triggers contentment and serenity. “Thank you, thank you, thank you” is the blanket of love for a warm embrace.

The expectations of the world may not be in alignment with your self-worth. It’s okay for you to fellowship with your truth and answer with confidence your decision to make movements in life that make your soul smile.

Tap into emotions that the world tells you to suppress. Feel, laugh, cry, dance, scream, whisper, listen, talk, but most of all BE!

Grow with the power of the universe — ever-changing and with unpredictable joy. Do what you always wanted to do and be who you always wanted to be.

Life is to be lived unapologetically. Let’s do this — life is waiting for you!

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Letter from the Publishers

Date posted:

Legends of the Fall

Autumn is now in full swing and October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a moment when Americans are asked to reflect on the importance of staying vigilant about preventative steps that are proven to save lives. Black women are at a particularly high risk for dying of the disease — and that’s why we hope you’ll join us on Oct. 15 for the 5th Annual Las Vegas Caravan for Mammogram. This free event requires only that you submit a registration/entry form in exchange for a bag of car decorations and complimentary lunch at Town Square. For more information, call (702) 810-5631.

Elsewhere in this issue:

We spotlight House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s recent stop in Las Vegas, where she joined Congressman Steven Horsford for an eye-opening visit to Acelero Learning

Las Vegas Clark County Library District puts a spooky spotlight on Halloween, planning an October full of activities that will be fun for the entire family as part of Executive Director Kelvin Watson’s relentless approach to making the entire community a part of the library family

Highlights from the Las Vegas Black Image Magazine At the Beach fundraiser in La Jolla, Calif.

And of course, a celebration of the newly-crowned WNBA champion Las Vegas Aces, a team of wonder women who delivered a world title to this amazing city.

Much Love,
Charles Tureaud & Kimberly Bailey Tureaud
CDAlasvegas@gmail.com

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This Generation’s Task: Save Democracy | By Louie Overstreet

Date posted:

BY LOUIE OVERSTREET

Louie Overstreet

The generation before mine, America’s greatest generation, are dying off at the rate of 600 a day. They were tasked with saving the world from tyranny and they completed their task in a magnificent way!

My generation was tasked with promoting and preserving civil and human rights. We got off to a decent start in the 1960s, but as we play through the back nine of life, the jury is still out on how well we managed our task. This is primarily due to the fact we did not heed the saying, “the price of freedom is eternal vigilance.”

This generation’s task is to save democracy. Let me tell you, from my vantage point, their grade could well be given out as early as on November 8, 2022.

The present generation gives me the distinct impression that not even an alarm clock can wake them up. Not to make sure they wake up for work on time, but to alert them to the clearest and most present danger since Lincoln stated, “America will not be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedom, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”

In my self-appointed role of town crier, on occasion I use hyperbolic language to create fear and disagreement among uninformed villagers. However, such is not the case when I cry out that American democracy is at a tipping point in terms of becoming unbalanced due to numerous un-American activities being sanctioned by the rulers of a major political party.

These dogmatists did not exist in the first decade of this millennium; however, their extreme ideology is now fully capable of causing the collapse of our constitutional federal republic.

Preventing this collapse now rests firmly with the present generation, despite their demonstrated lack of any sense of responsibility. As such, democracy could well perish, if typical off-year voter turnout in south of 50%. We need the present generation to create a turnout north of 62% to save our nation from tribalism. No, make that cannibalism.

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Saving Money, Energy Through Home Weatherization

Date posted: September 13, 2022

As autumn approaches, now is the best time to plan ahead and prepare your home for the cooler weather. Weatherizing your home is a simple — and sensible — way to reduce your energy bills. ENERGY STAR estimates that you can save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs just by insulating and sealing your home against air leaks. 

Insulation acts as a shield for your home, blocking the loss of heat in the winter. The three types of insulation recommended by Southwest Gas are attic, floor and window insulation. The attic is the easiest location to add insulation and is suggested as a barrier for homes built prior to 1980 or if you experience excessively high energy bills. Floor insulation prevents heat loss through crawl spaces or basements where warm air can escape at a rapid pace. Window insulation is accomplished by installing double panes with either vinyl or fiberglass frames. 

The most common sources of air leaks are recessed lights, attic entrances, air ducts, door and window frames, and electrical outlets. Southwest Gas suggests testing for air leaks around your home to ensure you’re using energy efficiently. One test involves shutting a door or window on a piece of paper. If you’re able to pull the paper out without it tearing, there is a good chance your home is losing energy. A second way to test for air leaks is by using a flashlight after dark to check for rays of light around doors and windows. If you can see light from the opposite side, you don’t have an airtight seal and may be losing energy. Finally, you can manually check for drafts by moistening your hand and running it around the edges of doors and windows when it’s cold or windy. If you feel a draft, air is passing in and out of your home. 

Those air leaks can easily be sealed using caulk. There are several types of caulks — so it is recommended that you compare the strength and properties to select the best option for your home. Caulk should be used around window and door frames, exterior openings such as pipes and water faucets, skylights, and at corners formed by siding. 

More weathering tips and ways to save both energy and money are available at swgas.com. 

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Galaxy Glenn: from the Vegas stage to the pulpit

Date posted:
Glenn Runnells, also known as Galaxy Glenn

The legendary Phillis Wheatley likely never imagined, as the first widely-known African-American poet, that poetry would one day be integrated into everyday life as it is today with rap music, daily motivations, and slogans bringing clarity to life. 

Las Vegas’ own Glenn Runnells (AKA Galaxy Glenn) embodies that reality of modern life. He is not only one of the most popular radio personalities — popularizing sayings like “Don’t Trip, Tie Your Shoe” and “Reach One, Teach One” — he also has an inspirational back story that has inspired his current passion as an ordained minister. Runnells is a member of 100 Black Men of Southern Nevada and will host his First Annual Galaxy Glenn & Friends Golf Tournament on Nov. 4. 

Growing up in San Diego, Calif. as one of five children, Runnells developed his talents as an entertainer to distract from the realities of poverty within his childhood home. He often used comedy, singing and dancing to make his family laugh and to take the attention off their financial situation. 

“As a kid, even through trying times, I would always keep my brothers and sisters entertained to keep our minds off struggling times. I know I was blessed with a gift — although I came from a very disciplined family. I always managed to find a chance to impersonate James Brown and to tell a funny story,” he said. “I didn’t grow up with a silver spoon, but I was always an eternal optimist and always looked at things as temporary. Any situation that appeared to be unfavorable I would always say, ‘This too shall pass.’” 

Arriving in Las Vegas in 1993 after reaching an entertainment ceiling in California, Runnells styled himself as “Galaxy Glenn —The Complete Entertainer” because he excelled in acting, singing, radio, and comedy. 

“I remember being in a band back in California and when the band and I broke up, I told the members, ‘I will make you guys regret that we broke up, and I am going to take this name, Galaxy, beyond comprehension’ — that is how I got my stage name, Galaxy Glenn.” 

After meeting onetime KCEP general manager Louis Connor (LC) in San Diego at a Def Comedy Jam show in 1992, Runnells was offered an on-air deejay position at the community station. He became an instant staple at the station and in the community as a whole. 

“One of the things I loved most about being on the air at KCEP is that I made amazing relationships and it gave me a platform to give back to the Historic Westside and the Las Vegas community at large,” he said. “Believe it or not, I was always involved in the community. I’ve always had a passion for any cause that would bring about change for the greater good. So, I was involved with causes combating poverty or bringing peace in the community — that has always been my passion, because of my mother’s influence on me as a child.” 

There was an eight-year separation from Las Vegas for Runnells in 2011, when he felt as though he was called to serve the community on a higher level. He is currently known, after finishing theology school, as Minister Glenn Runnells. 

“Well, a bishop once told me that both the entertainment world and the Godly world loves me,” he said. “The world that I currently serve is the world of building the kingdom. I also see myself in this world with God as my pillar — and those who don’t know God, but might know me, will get to know Him. My transition was a calling on my life where I now believe there is nothing more important than my mission. My ministry is based on why He went to the cross for me. It’s a process of being diligent. We all have a purpose. When He calls you He will make the nest uncomfortable — and I wanted to fly out because I initially wanted to stay in the mess. Who doesn’t love the bright lights and all the money that comes along with it and everyone loves you but I was fueling a world of sin. The more you sin the more you separate. My goal is to not drift and to stay focused and to use my gifts to bring people to the Kingdom of Christ. I am trying to save as many souls as I possibly can, and I also do this at Covenant Christian Fellowship as an associate minister.” 

Currently, Runnells can be heard on his daily radio show called The Afternoon Drive—Side by Side, on 91.5 FM. “Working at 91.5 FM was a perfect landing place for me and it’s a station that plays a variety of music unapologetically,” he said. “I’m allowed to do my radio show with music and encourage people as a minister. It gives me the opportunity to drop some nuggets and remind people that hope is prevalent and ‘life isn’t a ‘cake walk, it’s a ‘faith walk.’”

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YOU! HAVE THE POWER | Dr. Ellen Brown

Date posted:

Take the Stage

BY DR. ELLEN BROWN

DR. ELLEN BROWN

Definition: to become the center of attention; to become the focus of everyone’s attention.

Think of any topic in the news today that seeks to address life-changing, lifesaving or how we live our everyday lives. Now, think of how often you listen to conversations and commentaries from co-workers or friends, read news stories, or watch your favorite media. Do you sometimes find yourself questioning their positions on a topic? How often do you have the need for more discussion or to express your ideas, opinions, thoughts, and questions?

I am asking because I often find myself experiencing all the above; but this time my mind, (in its attempt to help me satisfy the need for more understanding) offered me a possible option to answer.

There are topics that leave me wondering, questioning, seeking more dialogue and action. There must be other audiences of like minds. No matter how many groups and organizations exist, there will always be interested people with a need for action who are left with questions and wanting more. So, in my own mental place where I need to find like minds for my interests, it occurred to me that instead of looking for a stage that belongs to someone else and convincing them to award me a bit of their time and space, why not create a stage with focus on my interest and wait for others to join me? Examples from the past include the NAACP, followed by the Urban League, the United Negro College Fund and more.

While these illustrious and monumental organizations provided an incredible foundation, think of how their stages expanded with the emergence of other stages: fraternities and sororities, 100 Black Men/Women, Black Lives Matter, Susan G. Komen, LGBTQ, and significantly more who bravely sought to share the stage instead of replacing the existing actors.

It is often said there is nothing new that emerges that has not existed in some form in the past. Questions, topics, solutions, and needs popping up in our daily news and interactions have always existed in some form or another — and may still be viable as they are; however, we see and seek the need for a different direction.

What about sharing your version? TAKE THE STAGE! Think about, define, and build the platform that supports the position you want to see and hear more about.

Create an inviting stage atmosphere — not necessarily for everyone or anyone, but with enough structure that those out there who also have interest will recognize the common focus and join you. In fact, you may find there are others looking for the same direction and are ready to join you on your stage. By sharing your stage for common input and discussions, your view expands through communion with like minds.

Finally, taking this route does not take away from anything which might already be in progress, well-supported and funded. Yours is proactive by seeing a need and filling it, tapping into and expanding new ways to address old challenges. Soon, more like-minded people will find your stage a better fit and join your mission.

There is room. Let’s see some new stages emerge in Las Vegas in 2023. YOU Have the Power!

Dr. Ellen Brown enjoys writing on political topics that encourage and invite discussion leading to action. She is a retired university educator and dean and can be reached at ebrown.nci@gmail.com

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HISTORIC BLACK VEGAS | Putting in the work

Date posted:
Claytee D. White

Recognizing Faye Todd & Jackie Brantley

BY CLAYTEE D. WHITE

Although we have not yet arrived at the final destination, there are so many people who deserve recognition for their roles in Las Vegas’ long march toward justice.

Two of them are Faye Todd and Jackie Brantley. Todd migrated to Las Vegas in 1964 and Brantley grew up here. Here’s the context: in the 1970s, after the intensity of the national civil rights movement began to wane, Las Vegas was still taking baby steps on issues of employment equity. These circumstances weren’t much different from other parts of the country; access to good jobs was one of the reasons for the Great Migration that began around 1910 — when people began leaving the violence of the South for a better life.

In 1971, there was a consent decree in place that named a plethora of hotel casinos, labor unions, and the Las Vegas Resorts Association for not taking sustained, concerted action to further the hiring of Blacks in front-of-the-house jobs. After honing her office skills and learning new ones, Todd applied for a clerical job at the Dunes Hotel Casino — and as management had almost certainly planned, she was fired shortly thereafter, likely because she fulfilled a head count to satisfy the decree for that accounting period. But after being released, Todd completed all the tasks on her desk. And unlike a few others, did not tell her manager where to go. Instead, she went to the Desert Inn, used her former manager at the Dunes as a reference, got a glowing recommendation, and never looked back.

Jackie Brantley came along a few years later when the clerical position she sought caused keen interest across the country. She prevailed and posed the race question during her interview — just to be sure that the process would be equitable. Brantley became secretary to both the head of promotions and the head of publicity at the Desert Inn Hotel Casino. When her bosses moved on to better positions, she became the head of both departments.

By 1975, Todd had become the Special Events Coordinator at the Desert Inn Resort and the following year moved to the Landmark Hotel Casino for her “perfect job”— Entertainment Director/Corporate Executive Assistant to the owners. Todd was among the upwardly mobile executives pictured in Ebony magazine, joining thousands of Blacks in hundreds of industries across the U.S.

Brantley loved her position and the freedom to work with other Blacks who were moving into jobs that allowed professional development and creativity. And she was also covered in Ebony. Over the years, Brantley worked for many stars and remembers Alex Haley and Muhammad Ali as two that she worked closely with over the years. Both women are still in town and have many great stories to share.

Their experiences beg the question: “What took so long?” Or better yet: “What is taking so long?”

Next month: we profile Roosevelt Toston, first Black at the LVCVA and much more.

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Women, Know Your Worth!

Date posted:

BY CRAIG KIRKLAND, EVP/Director of Retail Banking, Nevada State Bank

Craig Kirkland

Should women earn the same or more than men? Absolutely. 

Should women be given the same leadership and growth opportunities as their male counterparts? Without a doubt. 

I have two daughters, an incredible mom who raised me after the early passing of my father, and a wife who owns her own business. I am surrounded by amazing people who happen to be women. With our daughters, we try to dispel any perceived limitations that are implicitly or explicitly reinforced by society. We point to women of accomplishment as examples of what they can achieve if they put their minds to it. 

While I believe these things to be true, disparities still exist. According to WalletHub, nearly 68% of women with children 18 years or younger were in the workforce in 2021; however, their hourly wage was only 84% of what men make. WalletHub also looked at several key metrics driven largely by childcare, professional opportunities, and work-life balance, to rank the best and worst states for working mothers. Nevada came in at #46, and did not fare much better than the three last-place states — Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. 

Women: know your worth and value. Consider the following steps when it comes to improving your pay and work life: 

● Ask (not for money — not yet) your employer for role clarity and specifically what success looks like, then … 

● Enrich Your Ask: Focus on doing your best against those defined metrics 

● Invest in Yourself: Take advantage of company-provided training and resources; go back to school; complete a pending degree or obtain a professional certification 

● Build bridges and mend fences: Show you have the emotional intelligence to be collaborative and work well with others. 

● Network: Connect with women and men who are doing what you aspire to do, then … 

● Seek Mentorship: Model the behaviors 

● Dress to Succeed: If you look good, you feel good. Be humble, but exceedingly confident 

● Develop Your Leadership Skills: Build a comfort level speaking in front of people (try Toastmasters or similar organizations) 

● Leverage small business lending programs that benefit women-owned businesses if you want to start your own company 

● Practice Self-Care: Last but not least, prioritize yourself and practice self-care by walking, praying, journaling, meditating, gaming, crafting, bowling — whatever brings you some measure of joy. 

Craig Kirkland, EVP/Director of Retail Banking for Nevada State Bank, shares insights from his 30-year banking career in Craig’s Common Cents. If you’d like to read his other posts, please visit www.nsbank.com/cents.

 

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