On Nov. 3, Denver Urban Spectrum will present stories of tribulation, courage and triumph through video, conversation and written profiles. These colorful stories will highlight individuals who have overcome obstacles ranging from racism to adversity and tragedy.
Carlotta Walls LaNier was the youngest of the Little Rock Nine, a group of African-American students, who were the first Black students ever to attend classes at Little Rock Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1957. She was the first Black female to graduate from Central High School. Her story will focus on Institutional Racism.
On June 9, 1993, Marie Phason’s 6-year-old son Broderick Bell was hit by a random gunshot, kicking off what came to be known as Denver’s “Summer of Violence.” Bell survived, but many others did not during the summers that followed. Her story will focus on Public Safety.
Denver playwright and actress Rhonda Jackson was diagnosed with Lupus in 1994. There’s no cure for Lupus, an auto-immune disease, and she had to learn to live with it. Dedicated to educating the community about Lupus, her story will focus on Health Disparities.
Rhonda Fields entered politics following her work as a victims’ rights advocate, seeking justice in the wake of the murders of her son, Javad Fields, and his fiancée, Vivian Wolfe. The couple was murdered on June 20, 2005, less than a week before Javad planned to testify as a key witness in a murder trial. Fields was appointed to the Colorado Commission on Criminal Juvenile Justice in 2007, elected to the Colorado State House three times, and in 2016, she was elected to the Colorado State Senate. Her story will focus on Political Engagement.
On November 3, 2008, 80-year old mother, grandmother andgreat grandmother Ruth Boyd was beaten to death in her home in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Her murder was never solved. She is the mother of Denver Urban Spectrum publisher, Rosalind J. Harris. Their story will focus on Elder Abuse.
“After seeing Crying Wolf…Stories of the Lupus Warriors, a play written by Rhonda Jackson, I felt her story needed to be told. Finding comfort in this production, I realized there were other women who have gone through trials and tribulation and wanted to share how they overcame them,” says Denver Urban Spectrum publisher Rosalind “Bee”Harrishaving gone through tragedy with the death of her mother. “My hope is that these stories will inspire and empower other women who have suffered from some form of tragedy and realize that they are not alone and help is available.”
These stories and others will be presented on Saturday, Nov. 3, at a luncheon, Colorful Stories…See Me, Hear Me, at the Renaissance Hotel in Denver. At this powerful event, Denver Urban Spectrum will share a message about overcoming tribulation with courage and personal conviction, and bring light to issues that still need a better response and solutions from our community. Attendees will learn up close and personal how these women persevered through video and a panel discussion; and those who want to can share their story. Experts in each field will speak about today’s climate of institutional racism, public safety, health disparities, political engagement and elder abuse.
Emmy award-winning journalist, talk show hostand documentary filmmaker Tamara Banks will emcee the luncheon and moderate the storyteller panel. First Lady of Denver Mary Louise Lee will serve as the honorary chair.
A portion of proceeds will benefit nonprofit organizations in each area chosen by itsstoryteller.
Editor’s note: Sponsorship opportunities are available by calling 303-292-6446. For tickets and more information, visit www.Eventbrite.com. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the following organizations: Hallet Elementary Academy, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Arts-in-Education Academy, It Takes A Village/Phenomenal Women, Lupus Colorado, Fields Wolfe Memorial Fund, The Ruth Boyd Elder Abuse Fund, the BE BRILLIANT Initiative, and the Bringing Back the Arts Foundation.