Theme: “My Roots, My Heritage”
July 28, 2018
Curated by Dr. Rohini B. Ramanathan, Images International, Oceanside, NY
Dr. Rohini B. Ramanathan (Writer and Curator “My Roots, My Heritage”) is founder-director, Images International, a cultural, educational and communication institution devoted to building bridges among communities through art, literature and other means. A long-time resident of Oceanside, a member of the Long Beach Writer’s Circle and the Long Island Writers’ Guild, and a corporate learning and development professional with an honors undergraduate degree in English literature from Jesus & Mary College, New Delhi, India, Dr. Rohini B. Ramanathan began her publishing “career” at age 19 with a weekly, Washington-based, Indian-American newspaper. Over 200 columns/essays/articles/poems of hers have appeared various publications, including the New York Times, Newsday and the Great South Bay Magazine. Currently, her novel The New Gods is with a Manhattan agent. In 2017, her 11, 000-word long, verse narrative Ana and Blackie the Little Furball, entered in the Local Gems Press, 30-days-30-poems contest, was selected by Local Gems for publication. A trained Indian Classical Music vocalist, and winner of several arts grants, Ro is the founder and director of the East-West World Music Epiphany band. She moved to the U.S. at age 18.
Daryel Reyes-Groom has worked for the New York City Public Schools as an English Teacher for 16 years. She is also obtaining a New York State Special Education Certification. In addition, she is an animal activist and has volunteered at many shelters across Long Island. These include: Ruff House Rescue, Rescue Ink, Kitty Cove, Long Beach Animal Shelter, and Pet Supplies Plus. Furthermore, she has taught writing at the Thomas Aquinas Summer Program at Molloy College for several summer sessions. In addition, she has acted as the Molloy College English Lambda Vice President. She was also honored by Nassau Community College Who’s Who Award. She has published numerous poems and short stories in college anthologies. She received a one-year scholarship to Queens College, through a literary essay contest. She is a member of the Long Beach Writer’s Circle. Daryel currently resides in Long Beach, New York with her husband Rony and her pets.
Alice Laby was born and bred on Long Island. Her father emigrated to the United States from Poland in the 1930s. Her mother’s parents were from Russia. She raised her three sons on Long Island and is grateful to have four grandchildren. Upon graduating from Stony Brook University, she worked in the maritime industry in New York City. Later in life she obtained a Masters in Counseling from Fordham University. She is proud of her volunteer service with Pet Partners. Her Labrador retriever has garnered untold hours helping people in nursing homes, libraries and being a canine friend to disabled people. Ms. Laby is a participant in the Long Beach Writers’ Circle, and is indebted to the Circle for encouragement and standards of excellence. Ms. Laby has written and self-published a romance novel, and is currently working on a second book that takes place during World War II.
Melanie S. Baker, M.Sc., Special Education: Wife of 15 years, mother of 3 sons, of which her first son has been diagnosed with autism; professional educator, curriculum specialist, teacher, writer, editor, has been published in inspirational as well as multicultural publications to spread the message of hope and cultural equivalence. She loves writing transformationally focusing on parenting difficult children, family dynamics around substance abuse, as well as overcoming emotional and mental challenges.
She has provided teacher training and support in addition to developing specialized learning programs for challenging learners. She has been responsible for writing and developing Individualized Education Plans for students with special needs and co-chaired Committee on Special Education meetings. She was tasked with the responsibility of re-building the entire Special Education program from the ground up for the state run juvenile detention center and went on to serve as interim Education Coordinator for that program and was responsible for a marked reduction in violent incidents under her leadership. She is primarily committed to the promotion of inclusive opportunities for children with special needs. More recently, she began travelling to train teachers internationally in autism management in her island home of Jamaica. She is the designer of a unique curriculum promoting positive identity formation, leadership and multiculturalism. She is available to provide training and consultation. She lives by her life’s motto, ‘to walk humbly, do justly and love mercy.’ Contact details: (631) 245 – 1878 or by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Barbara Marion Horn, born in Brooklyn and raised in Freeport, remembers weekends catching the gold ring at Nunley’s carousel, summer days at Northwest Park playing handball and winter nights devouring Texas Rangers Hamburgers. An advocate for the September 11th Community, she plans two annual events: the 9/11 Community Lunch, which in more recent years includes survivors of the Boston Marathon Bombing; and Calling Of The Names Ceremony, which honors deceased 9/11 Responders and Volunteers who helped in the days weeks and months following the attacks. Barbara writes, sings, and dances, and loves to take endless walks with her 14-pound, four-legged rescue boy Riley.
Wendy Walker Jackson is a prolific poet, enthusiastic storyteller, and insightful educator. In 1994, she migrated to the United States from Guyana, where her passion for music, reading, board games and culinary arts is deeply rooted. As a lifelong learner, her credentials include a Bachelor’s degree from Medgar Evers College, and two Master’s degrees – one from Hofstra University, the other from The College of New Rochelle. Many of her works are influenced by the social intricacies of the human condition. Ms Jackson is an active volunteer in her community, and serves on the Board of Freeport-Roosevelt Economic Opportunity Commission. She lives with her loving and talented family in Freeport, New York.
After a successful career in dentistry in New York for over 40 years, Dr. Jan Wade Gilbert, DMD has embarked on a whole new path that allows him to use his multiple talents and skills to benefit others in many more ways. Jan has written several books in several genres (The “BOO!” Book, The Guys’ Cookbook, The Traveler’s Diet, Doctor-Level Nutrition, The Difference Between Ranting and Raving, etc.) and his articles have appeared in many professional journals. At Long Beach’s Adult Education School, Jan teaches a course titled: Getting Older without Growing Old. He also lectures around the country to audiences of doctors and lay people. Dr. Gilbert has developed:
A new weight loss/control technique based on science and common sense.
A new anti-drug program based on concepts that are powerful and easy to execute.
A technique for any business to use to enhance their productive and organizational elements that make their processes run more smoothly and elevate their employees’ health to a new level that influences positively all aspects of the business.
Her favorite quote is… “Always keep the oil lamp of hope… On the window sill of your existence
Upon her arrival to America from Italy at age 12, Rita Monte wrote her very first poem, and has won numerous poetry contests ever since. She has read her work at several poetry venues, her poems have been featured in some literary magazines, and published in the Nassau County Poet Laureate Society Review, Bards Annual Poetry Anthology and No Distance between Us, Italian American Poets of Long Island. Her poem One More Day, received memorable mention in the Princess Ronkonkoma contest. Rita has attended creative writing classes at Nassau Community College. She attends writing workshops regularly, run by the Long Island Writers Guild. Rita is active in the Italian American community. She is the vice president of the organization I.A.W.C. (Italia American Women Center) in Great Neck, N.Y. She is the creator and organizer of Home Made Wine Extravaganza, the first and only homemade wine competition in the New York area. Rita had taught Italian in the Baldwin school district and does private tutoring. She has organized several fundraising events to benefit cancer victims. One very close to her heart is Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths hair donation, an event to make free wigs for cancer patients. She is married to Giovanni and enjoys cooking with her son, Chef Alessandro, who is very proud of his parents and his Italian background. Rita is currently working on her first book of poetry, inspirational quotes and short stories. “A True artist is one that knows how to be humble.”
Otis Becoat is an actor/poet/Christian rapper/motivational speaker who is full of life and very vibrant. His goal is to be best. His motto: OUR DESTINY IS TO LEAVE A LEGACY. Otis has a business, Success Is In Your Bloodline; selling frames of original poems on topics of God, success, struggle, pain, and hard work. His poetry name is OJBthewitness. His Christian rapper name is Kingdom Thug. He has hosted affairs and events and have recited poems at graduations, funerals, weddings, etc. He has acted in such plays For Better or Or Worse(Raquel Marie Jones, deceptive friend); Misty’s Blood( Denise Newsome, off broadway-drug boss); Life Just Begun(Antenia Simmons, high school student); Cry For Help(Cheri McClurkin, oldest son); Beneath The Layers(Travis Wright, smooth undercover boss); DomesticViolence Skit(Lithera Forbes, lawyer, abused boyfriend); Black History Skit(Richard Hartley, Martin L. King); Pandora’s Box(Natasha Carter, husband); Kaylee’s Dolls(Elaine Petry, mafia hit man); Change the story(hitman in video by Bones, Reflection of Sistah(Sapphire Jackson, movie & play); Thugs & Harmony…video available on YouTube) https://instagram.com/p/Bjej1trg5AG/
Keith O’Neal is a rapper and a poet whose motto is all things work together for the good and knows that he will prevail as a very positive man who believes in not giving up no matter what. Keith has been doing poetry since he was a child and has done a lot of poetry readings in churches and schools as a young adult, performing in different venues throughout long Island and Westchester. He has also performed on stage in the military as well as in different settings throughout New York City. He likes to speak of and write about the Lord and His power over our lives. He is all about positivity, having faith and believing that no matter what’s going on in our lives things will work out.