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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HEALTHIER YOU: Understanding gynecologic cancers

Date posted:

BY DR. ANNETTE MAYES, OB/GYN

DR. ANNETTE MAYES

Gynecologic cancers affect women’s reproductive organs. The five main types are cervical, ovarian, uterine, vaginal, and vulvar cancer. Here are the basic facts:

Cervical cancer is a disease in which cancer cells form in the tissues of the cervix.

Ovarian cancer is a cancer that begins in the female organs that produce eggs (ovaries).

Uterine cancer is a type of cancer that begins in the uterus. Most uterine cancers begin in the layer of cells that form the lining (endometrium) of the uterus.

Vaginal cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the vagina.

Vulvar cancer is a type of cancer that occurs on the outer surface area of the female genitals.

There are symptoms associated with some gynecologic cancers that might include:

Pelvic pain or pressure that doesn’t go away, and you don’t know why.

Feeling too full, too fast, even when you eat just a little.

Unusual vaginal bleeding — like having longer or heavier periods than what’s normal for you, or bleeding after you’ve gone through menopause.

You can lower your risk for some gynecologic cancers with a vaccine and screening tests. Some gynecologic cancers are caused by human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus. The HPV vaccine can help prevent cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers.

Cervical cancer is the only gynecologic cancer that has recommended screening tests. Pap tests (or Pap smear) and HPV tests can help prevent cervical cancers or find it early.

Several hereditary conditions can raise your chance of getting cancer. Two of the most common are hereditary breast and ovarian cancer and Lynch syndrome. If you have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, you may have a higher ovarian cancer risk.

Talk to your doctor about ways to reduce your risk or call the Las Vegas All Women’s Care at (702) 522-9640. Or visit us at 700 Shadow Lane #165 in Las Vegas.

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Employ NV Youth Hub & Teen Zone Opens Inside West Charleston Library

Date posted:
Library District Executive Director Kelvin Watson and Congressman Steve Horsford attend the grand opening of the Youth Employment Hub at West Charleston Library.

The first full-scale Employ NV Youth Hub and Teen Zone in Southern Nevada officially opened inside the West Charleston Library, located at 6301 W. Charleston Blvd., in August. 

At nearly 2,500-square-feet, the hub and teen zone are a partnership between Workforce Connections and the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District — and will allow young adults to access a variety of no-cost employment and education programs offered through both organizations in a convenient, teen-friendly atmosphere. 

The Employ NV Youth Hub offers a comfortable and colorful space where teens and young adults ages 16 to 24 can find help with employment, paid training, internships, pre-apprenticeships, mentoring, and other educational opportunities. The hub is staffed with career coaches experienced in working with out-of-school and in-school youth who may face employment barriers or need guidance in finding a successful career path. The Employ NV Youth Hub will also offer teen-friendly, high-tech tools like virtual reality (VR) headsets that give young adults an immersive look at in-demand careers. 

The library’s adjacent Teen Zone provides teens and tweens ages 12 to 18 with a dedicated lounge area — including tables, an 85” TV and couches, perfect for hanging out, studying, or playing the latest video games on Xbox, PS5, and Nintendo Switch. Future activities will include a range of fun learning opportunities such as anime clubs, chess clubs, game tournaments, and more. The Teen Zone will also be equipped with VR headsets, provided through the Nevada Career Explorer program, to enable teens to learn about careers in healthcare, advanced manufacturing, IT, logistics, and skilled trades. 

“Our goal is to expose young adults to well-paying careers while providing them the one-on-one assistance they need to turn their employment goals into reality,” said Jaime Cruz, Workforce Connections Executive Director. “This Employ NV Youth Hub and Teen Zone will empower the next generation to gain the skills needed to succeed in the workforce while helping create a pipeline of qualified workers for employers.” 

“One of our primary goals at the Library District is to bridge the digital divide,” said Kelvin Watson, Las Vegas-Clark County Library District Executive Director. “Our partnership with Workforce Connections provides easy access to critical, no-cost employment programs and cutting-edge tools in a space designed specifically for teens. Together, our two organizations will help our young adults discover their career interests and find future success.” 

The Employ NV Youth Hub and Teen Zone are open during regular library hours, Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. To learn more about the Employ NV Youth Hub, call (702) 602-5199 or visit EmployNVYouthHub.org.

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Letter from the Publishers

Date posted:

Our hearts were ringin’ …

Las Vegas Black Image publishers Charles Tureaud and Kimberly Bailey Tureaud

Do you remember the 21st night of September?”

We won’t blame you if the classic Earth, Wind & Fire song rings in your mind all month — but in this edition of Las Vegas Black Image, we’re celebrating another legendary entertainer: Janet Jackson, whose outstanding career has endured for generations and continues to entrance audiences and listeners all over the world.

We also celebrate Minister Glenn Runnells (popularly known as Galaxy Glenn), as he takes us through his journey toward a purposeful life. And you chime in with Community Speaks, sharing opinions on how to live one’s best life and remedying Southern Nevada’s homeless crisis.

Our deepest gratitude will always be with our advertisers and contributors, who ensure that we bring the best each month to Black Image’s most important stakeholders: you, the readers. And beyond these pages, we look forward to seeing you in person at two extraordinary upcoming events: AT THE BEACH in beautiful La Jolla, Calif., the annual Las Vegas Black Image Health & Wellness gathering set for Sept. 23-25; and Las Vegas Caravan for Mammogram on Oct. 15. Call (702) 615-8216 for more information or email us at cdalasvegas@gmail.com

We Appreciate YOU!
Charles Tureaud & Kimberly Bailey Tureaud
Publishers
(702) 615-8216

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PEACE: I’m HERE

Date posted:

Feelings of stress and anxiety can be overwhelming. Thinking about what happened yesterday or may happen tomorrow can remove us from the NOW. Staying in the moment can bring relief from life’s pressures. Take account of what is surrounding you at this very moment — what you see, feel, and touch. Staying in the RIGHT HERE and NOW can reduce all the emotional stress hanging on the would-of-could-of.

Gratitude is the gift you receive when you bring all your attention to the very moments you are in. It is a blessing to be truly thankful for the moments you experience.

You can experience this while listening to the words of a stranger who has commanded your attention. The attention to complete a conversation and to connect the lines of communication with the caring glance of your eyes.

“Yes, I see you.” In this exact moment I give my full heart and soul to the moment we are sharing. “Stay” is a compliment and “connection” is a blessing. The spoken word is transcendent and hidden in the vibe of the moment.

Time can be radical, but obedient to your guidance. The truly creative ones understand the moments that feed their vision for an integrated life. Be HERE. All of you, not a piece absent from the soul.

Seeing and hearing the birds as they sing the tunes that rotate serenity. Yes, “I’m Here.” With nothing more than what has entered my environment. My peace.

What a beautiful word — here, in the moment where God has commanded us to be.

The flicker of life will slow down — embracing you with blanketed warmth, waiting for you to turn the page instead of focusing on abstractions.

There is peace as you say — and act — “I’m Here.”

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America Is Now A SNAFU Nation | By Louie Overstreet

Date posted:

BY LOUIE OVERSTREET

Louie Overstreet

If you are unfamiliar with the acronym, ask anyone who has served in the military. Okay, to save you some time, here’s what it means: Situation Normal, All (you know what) Up! (Black Image is a family magazine, so I could not spell out the complete word — but you get my drift.)

To me, it perfectly represents the conditions in present-day America. Our nation’s condition is equivalent to experiencing a nervous breakdown, yet still believing that you can still function in a normal manner.

As many of you may recall, I have written ad nauseum about the fact our nation is becoming more ungovernable by the day. I pointed to the main culprits being division along political religious, economic, racial, gender and lifestyle fault lines.

Political division is so severe in America that a former president — you know, the one whose home was raided by the FBI last month — withheld information on a pending health crisis that resulted in a pandemic. Also, he is being investigated for committing an act of sedition back in January 2021. The Republican Party wants everybody and their mother to have access to assault weapons. Recently, all 50 of its members in the U.S. Senate voted against the Inflation Reduction Act, designed to improve the lives of everyday citizens.

Evangelicals have brainwashed poor whites into voting against their self-interests.

The economic gap between the wealthy and poor is at an all-time high. Corporate greed is shown in so many ways, including the act of shipping manufacturing jobs overseas to increase profit margins. This greed costs jobs for citizens and jeopardizes our national defense.

Race is the motivating factor for suppressing voting rights through oppressive court decisions and state laws.

The Supreme Court reversed a half century of a constitutionally guaranteed right to a safe abortion. Also, legal marriage of persons in the LGBTQ community is now in their “gun sights” (pun intended) for reversal by the court.

Once upon a time in America, this condition did not exist. However, today we are a SNAFU nation — desperately in need of a quick fix!

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