Dining & Wine
News Summer 2012
The Re- Introduction of SHAZ, Kenyan World Music Artist, to the Music Scene
Months ago, my husband Jamie and I were out at Geoffrey's restaurant in Malibu, CA. Enjoying our opportunity to be out on a date in the midst of our busy lives, Jamie and I have a cocktail at the bar. Up comes this STUNNING woman, Blonde, Blue-Eyed woman with a foreign accent, introducing herself as Sharon, but you can call me "Shaz". Now, I have stopped trying the place people based on their accents. I always ask where they are from first. Married to a man with a Northern English accent, we have heard some doozies, when is comes to people mistaking where he is from.
So I go on to ask where she is from. She tells us that she is from Kenya. She adds that she is currently preparing to re-introduce herself to the Music Scene as a Kenyan World Music Artist. Being from Kenya and hearing a bit of her story, I tell her to let me know when she has everything together and to email it me.
So let's jump months later to June 2012, Shaz contacts me about how she has all her stuff together and wants to meet up. I let her know that I will be traveling loads this summer and let's meet ASAP. Well, that is exactly what we do.
Shaz comes to my house and shares a video detailing who she is and how she wants to return to Kenya in honor of a promise that she made to her late father about pursuing her dreams as a World Music Artist. As you may have noticed in a previous paragraph, I state that she is preparing to "re-introduce" herself to the Music Scene as a World Music Artist. That is because she was previously in a pop band in England in the early 2000s. However, she found that she was not being true to her Kenyan roots when working as a "Pop" artist. In turn, she left that life and committed herself to that she was most passionate about, World Music that incorporates the tribal music of her Homeland.
So now, Shaz is about to embark on an AMAZING journey where she will film her return to Kenya after ten years of being away, finally spread her father's ashes and rebuild her unique World Music sound with the first-hand influence of the culture and music of the Masai.
You can experience SHAZ's music and learn more about her story by clicking here.
Spread the Word about SHAZ and share on FACEBOOK and tweet on TWITTER by visiting her profile on REVERBNATION and clicking the relevant icons.
Article by Birungi Ives
Friday May 25th, 2012
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Lura's appearance on Erin Burnett's show OutFront on CNN can be watched by clicking on the following link.
Thursday May 24th, 2012
Today is the DAY that the Save Leo story is heard by the WORLD!! Lura will appear TODAY on Erin Burnett's show, OutFront, on CNN. Please click the link in Wednesday's update to check for channels and times in your local area.
Wednesday May 23rd, 2012
URGENT UPDATE!!!!! Lura Calder will now appear on Erin Burnett's show OutFront on CNN, TOMORROW, Thursday, May 24th, 2012.
Lura Calder will appear on Erin Burnett’s show OutFront on CNN, Wednesday, May 23rd! The show will air at 4 p.m., 8 p.m., and 11 p.m. Pacific time. Please check your local listings for channel and times in your area by clicking here.
The #SaveLeo website is up! Please visit it here.
Monday, May 21st, 2012
Today in Los Angeles, Lura, Leo and their family were in court with Judge Gordon presiding. After the hearing, Lura texted me: "Judge Gordon didn't help us. He agrees with Piscopo's decision."
Sunday May 20th, 2012
Lura has informed me that there is now a Petition on Change.org for the SAVE LEO Campaign. Please click on link in the requested tweet below, in order to sign and HELP SAVE LEO!
Also, Lura is asking YOU to PLEASE TWEET the following if you are on TWITTER. If you are not, but know someone that is, PLEASE ask them to TWEET the following:
American Citizen Leo is being forced by Italian courts to return to father US courts deemed abusive. Plz RT to #SaveLeohttp://www.change.org/petitions/the-safety-of-us-citizen-leo-rigamonti-from-his-abusive-father-demand-that-leo-be-allowed-to-stay-in-the-custody-of-his-american-mother?utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=share_petition&utm_term=share_button_modal
Saturday May 19th, 2012
Judge Piscopo ordered Leo to be given immediately to his father upon arrival in Italy on June 2nd 2012. In addition, on Sunday June 3rd 2012, Lura will have one supervised visit with Leo for one or two hours. A court appointed psychologist has been appointed to evaluate Leo on his separate interactions with his father and mother within a 48 hour period. Then on Monday June 4th 2012, there will be a full custody hearing to determine permanent custody arrangements based on the psychologist's observations.
Thursday May 17th, 2012
Stan Rosenfield, George Clooney's Publicist, has reached out on Lura and Leo's behalf to Dateline, so they can feature Lura Calder's story. I, Birungi Ives, am reaching out to my friends, contacts and colleagues with the intention of obtaining a space to hold a press conference/ informative talk where Lura Calder can tell her story to invited media outlets and increase awareness about the urgency of her situation. In turn, Lura has reached out to Stan about inviting media outlets to attend and to reach out to Maria Shriver, who is well known for her women and child advocacy initiatives.
Lura has the support of Giulia Bongiorno, one of the BEST Women Advocacy lawyers in Italy, as well as her organization, Doppia Difesa . Doppia Difesa means "Double Defense". Doppia Difesa is an Italian organization that supports the welfare of women against discrimination, violence and abuse. To view the Doppia Difesa website in English, please google it and click translate.
On May 17th 2012, there was a hearing in Parma, Italy, with Judge Piscopo presiding, where Leo's father requested immediate and full custody of Leo upon his arrival in Italy; the judge to order supervised visits only with Lura; for Leo to be immediately interviewed and processed by social services upon arrival and thrusted into a new school shortly after. Lura's attorneys in Parma submitted a clear deposition pinpointing all the major events of the long trials and hearings since March 2010. In addition, Lura's attorneys submitted an Orders After Hearing document, which states that Lura have full custody of Leo upon entry into Italy and that the orders from the judge in Parma, which grant Lura full custody; restraining order; supervised visits only for the father, remain in full force and effect. As a result of this hearing, the judge upheld his orders to grant full custody of Leo to Lura, upon arrival in Italy on June 2nd 2012. Then, he set a new hearing on June 4th 2012, to determine temporary custody arrangements.
On May 21st 2012, there is a final hearing scheduled in Los Angeles, with Judge Gordon presiding, to finalize the arrangements of our departure and entry into Italy. It is Lura's ultimate hope that Senator Dianne Feinstein intervenes on Leo's behalf, so he can remain on U.S. soil.
Updates by Birungi Ives
Interview with Lura Calder
May 9th, 2012
A 6 year old boy with bright eyes that light up your heart. He tries to keep a straight face, when telling his Mom his latest joke. His curly dark hair that falls so innocently against his sweet face. He is in love with Star Wars and is dedicated to writing the next episode. There is a peace about him, as he shows his mother how he can meditate. His mother loves when he wears his rainbow clown wig. She can see the smile in his eyes and feel the laughter in his heart. Eager and ready, he loves to learn! He does architectural design on the computer at home. He is jovial, young and free, as all 6 year olds should be! He loves LIFE! This is Leo Rigamonti TODAY!
Unfortunately, he was not always this way.
On Wednesday May 9, 2012, I interviewed Lura Calder near the grounds of my son Jediah's elementary school. With children enjoying youth and playing energetically in the background, Lura shared her story of her fight to keep her son, Leo, HOME and SAFE in the United States:
In 2010, Leo and his mother Lura fled Parma, Italy for Los Angeles, California, in fear of the risk to their safety at the hands of an abusive husband and father.
Lura: Shortly after I married my Italian husband, our relationship began to change. He became a completely different person. He became controlling and told me that I did not deserve to be loved. He would criticize and insult me. He said that he was GOD. Once I became pregnant, it went from bad to worse. He wanted me to have an abortion. He did not want me to tell any one that I was pregnant. My pregnancy was the best time in my life. When Leo was born, it was an AMAZING EXPERIENCE. My husband said that a husband is supposed to come first and that he has his needs. He would say very mean things to Leo. From the time Leo could speak, he would push his father away. His father said that even my own son rejects me, what do you (Leo) need a father for anyway. He would go for days in bed and without speaking to me and Leo. We lived in poverty. I do not want to say as bad as many people living in poverty around the world, but it was tough. However, my husband took advantage of this situation to wield power over us. He dictated the use of electricity, heat and water. Eventually I suggested to my husband about me leaving for the United States to get a better job. However, that suggestion was met with threats. He threatened me with violence and that he knew many people in Parma, Italy. He stressed that being a foreigner in Italy meant that no one would help me. He started to look for fire arms on the internet. He went to shooting ranges and brought the targets home and placed them on the wall as decoration. In 2008, I wanted to leave Parma for a family wedding in California. My husband told me that I could not go, since he could not go. Eventually, after days of long phone calls with family in California, he agreed. However, just before I left, he wrote a suicide note and that stated I was doing a horrible thing to him by leaving and going to see my family. During my trip, I reached out to my husband's father for support, because I was fearful to return to Italy. However, he felt that it was not his business and could not get involved, it was between us.
Birungi: So what was the straw that broke the camel's back?
Lura: It was a combination of threats of violence getting more intense, he started pushing me around, he started blocking me from leaving the house. I asked him for a divorce and for him to leave the apartment. Leo and I could not live like that any more. He said that was not how it worked. He added that the woman and child had to leave. That it was his house, not theirs. He followed up with a threat that if I was to leave that he would take Leo and I would never see him again. In addition, Leo had started to hurt himself by punching himself in the head with both fist, smashing his head in the wall and punching his stomach. Leo would climb into the trash can. Then, Leo would put his head in the trash can and slam the lid on his head over and over. Leo then told me, 'Just throw me in the trash, I want to be in the trash'. One afternoon, his father woke up from sleeping nearly all day, and Leo came running into the bathroom hiding behind my skirt. I asked, "What are you doing?". Leo whispered, "I don't want to see Daddy!". I said, "Why?". He said, "…because I want to LIVE!".
So, I was really scared. I first called the U.S. Embassy. They told me that I had to go to local authorities. On the suggestion of a friend, I went to the Center of Anti-Violence in Parma, Italy. I went there and told them everything that was happening. They said to me that I was a victim of domestic violence. This was the first time that I realized I was a victim of domestic violence. They also said that we were in a very dangerous situation and that my life and my son's life were in danger. They added that at any moment that it could become physical, all the ingredients were there and we needed to get out of that situation as soon as possible. So 2 days later, we got on a plane and left.
Birungi: When you arrived here in the United States, were you taken in by family and friends?
Lura: Yes, I came to my Mom. I had no friends in Parma. No family in Parma. I had no where to go. I was scared that he would get the police on his side and they wouldn't help me.
Birungi: So what year did you arrive?
Lura: 2010. February 2010.
Birungi: So you were in the United States. You were with your Mama. Your son was how old at the time?
Lura: He was 4.
Birungi: So he was 4 years old and you started court proceedings?
Lura: No, when I came, I just wanted to have a break. I was planning on going back. I wanted to take my son to see a therapist. He was clearly not doing well. That (Leo's behavior) was not normal. I tried to find an English speaking therapist in Parma. I was not able to find one. So it was one of my goals to find one. When I found one (in the United States), he told me that he would not be able to treat him. He needed permission from both parents to treat Leo. I knew that would never happen, since Leo's father had said to me many times , 'I don't need to see any Psychologists! I know more than they do! What are they going to teach me?'. He would never agree to that. That is when I knew that the only way to get help for my son was to file for separation and temporary custody.
I went to see a therapist for myself and she made it crystal clear that it would never get better and it would only get worse. I started to educate myself about what I was involved with. Then my husband told me that I should not have even been pregnant, that I should of been on birth control. That made it clear to me. I knew I should proceed. So I filed for separation. Then my husband decided to retaliate, instead of proceeding forward with the separation, by filing against me under the Hague Convention to force Leo back to Italy. Then, he filed criminal charges in Italy against me on the basis of parental abduction. Then, he filed to have my parental rights terminated in Italy, to make me pay. That is how this all started. I think he was very angry that he lost control of us! He made it crystal clear earlier, that if I ever try to leave him that he would make a war with me. He has done exactly that! He's made a war. Last time I spoke with him, on January 11, 2011, shortly after the judge denied him visitation with his son, he called me up. I asked him why he was doing all this. He said to me '…because you stabbed me in the back!'. I said, "So this is about revenge?". He said, 'Yes, it is!… Oh…and..a child has a right to his father!'. So I guess for him, I have to pay for what I did. I guess he thinks a child has a right to a father, but not to a mother. I can not figure out any other reason why he would do this, other than to just make me pay. He did not say, Because I want my son…Because I want him in my life…Because I want to be there for him. He is resentful of the fact that he has to be a father. It does not make any sense other than he needs to have people to control. If he can not have me, it is going to be his son!
Birungi: So you were in the United States. You were still staying with your mother. You had filed for separation. Your husband had used the Hague Convention to file charges. Then he also filed separate charges in Italy. You were in a place where you had fought for how long?
Lura: 2 years.
Birungi: You won the first Hague case, which your husband filed. However, your husband appealed. This appeal brought this case all the way to the California Superior and Supreme Court. After all the money spent and resources used, the final ruling was?
Lura: The final ruling was that there is a grave risk of harm for the child to be returned to his father, there is imminent danger that the child will become suicidal once he is returned to the father, the child has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and that he has a great deal of fear of his father. However, at the end of the day, even though there are supposed to be certain undertakings and/or conditions to minimize that risk of harm to Leo, the final judge decided that he did not need to determine those terms and that it was up to the Italian court system to decide. So we are being sent back to Italy (on June 1st 2012) with no place to live and no financial reassurances what so ever.
Birungi: So today, we have a very short period of time in which to deal with this situation. Is it your ultimate goal to reach out to California Senator Dianne Feinstein? What is it that you want her to do?
Lura: It is our last hope to have her write a specific legislation that would allow Leo to stay in the United States because of the domestic violence…because of the imminent danger to Leo's life upon returning…because we are U.S. Citizens…because of the rights of children..because of victim's rights…women's rights …family's rights…all of these things. It's just wrong to send a mother and child under these circumstances to a foreign country with no safety net.
Birungi: Other than that, what are you currently doing? Who are you reaching out to in order to get the word out about what has transpired and what are you trying to achieve? Who have you contacted? Who have you spoken to?
Lura: I have reached out to anyone and everyone that I could have possibly think of. And in turn, those people have reached out to anyone and everyone they could possibly think of. And some of those people are Angelina Jolie and George Clooney. Angelina's organization, Kids In Need of Defense (KIND) has been very supportive along with top experts in this country on the Hague Convention and Domestic Violence Issues, Jeffrey Edleson; Joan Meier and Merle Weiner. They wrote letters in support to the California Supreme Court to point out that the appeal court's decision was incredibly wrong and set a dangerous precedent. This appeal ruling was published and set as case law and undermines the grave risk of harm exception provided by the Hague Convention. Under the Hague Convention, if there is a great risk of harm, the child can only be sent back if certain undertakings have been set in place to minimize the risk of harm. However, the appellate court said the there was a grave risk of harm, but the child must go back and it is not contingent on the successful completion of the undertakings.
Birungi: So this is how it stands now. You are back to court on the 21st of May?.
Lura: Yes… on May 4th, the court said that counsel on both sides have to contact the Central Authority at the California State Department and in Italy to determine what will happen to Leo upon his arrival in Italy. So it's up in the air! (until the 21st of May)
Birungi: Next steps… Reaching out to United States Senator Dianne Feinstein for California. You have the support of George Clooney. You have the support of Angelina Jolie. We want to set up a Press Conference. Get the more media involved. Television appearances to expand exposure on what has transpired. What is your hope, in terms of the positive outcome of this, as it expands beyond yourself and Leo? What is your ultimate hope?
Lura: My ultimate hope is that the Hague Convention changes to more accurately reflect the current conditions in which children are taken away from their country of habitual residence. There are many women in international marriages that need protection, currently they are not. The Hague convention is being misused to return women and children to their abusers. This affects every single women and child that are trying to seek a safe place. I think what my case does, is that it sends a message to women, like me, living abroad in abusive situations that there is no way out, that they are going to get sent right back.
Birungi: So you want the positive outcome of this situation to reflect that there is a way out. ...that there are laws and support in place for women and children around the world in this situation. That is the ultimate.
Lura: Absolutely! The United States needs to get on board with many other countries around the world that are working to change the Hague Convention to more accurately reflect these current conditions. We are very close to doing that. The more public awareness that can be raised around this issue, the better the chances of our politicians taking a stand and getting the State Department to sign on to these changes.
Interview by Birungi Ives
Photos Courtesy of Arlene Mosshart Photography (with the exception of the photo of George Clooney with Lura Calder and the photo of Leo)
HERE is how YOU can help Save Leo:
Please GO to and Like the #SaveLeo FACEBOOK page by clicking here.
Please SHARE this article with your friends, family and colleagues by copying and pasting the following link,http://geof.us/index.php?id=62 , on FACEBOOK, TWITTER and via email. When you tweet about this case, please use #SaveLeo with your tweet.
Please KEEP CHECKING IN on this page for updates on Leo and Lura's situation.
Please READ the following press release and learn further details about this case and who you can contact directly to help Save Leo:
New press release 5/7/12
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Judge upholds return of boy to Italy:
American citizen boy ordered to return to abusive father in Italy; boy and mother fear for their lives.
Los Angeles, CA -- Two American citizens, a mother and a 6-year-old child—who also has Italian citizenship -- fear for their lives after the boy was ordered to return to Italy to his abusive father. After an American judge's denial of requested orders regarding their housing and safety, they will be sent to Italy with their suitcases to fend for themselves.
Lura Calder and her son left Italy in 2010 for Los Angeles to escape DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and SEXUAL ABUSE by the father, who is an Italian citizen. Despite findings that the boy is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, THE BOY greatly fears his father, and if he were returned without his mother could become suicidal, the boy is being forced to return in unsafe conditions.
The boy will be forced to leave June 1, 2012. Lura has exhausted all her legal remedies. When she returns to Italy with the boy, she faces court proceedings initiated by the father and potential imprisonment. A final hearing was held May 4 at the Los Angeles Superior Court, where Lura was hopeful that issues of housing, safety, and financial support would be addressed. Lura and her son have no home to return to. The judge declined to make provisions for their living conditions, or financial circumstances, or fashion any conditions, even though such orders are routinely made in these types of cases.
Lura endured years of abuse by her husband, Maurizio Rigamonti, while living with him in Parma, Italy, where they moved after their marriage in 2003. Their son was born there in 2005. Lura feared and continues to fear Maurizio's violence, and for her life. She discovered during the course of the trial that Maurizio tried to hire a hitman to kill her in Italy; the court evaluator found this to be a credible threat. Maurizio has a criminal record in Italy for multiple offenses, including possession of cocaine and drug trafficking.
After Lura left, Maurizio initiated three separate court proceedings in Italy against Lura, including termination of parental rights and abduction, which could result in Lura’s imprisonment. All three cases are still pending.
Maurizio also filed a Hague Convention petition which was heard by the Los Angeles Superior Court in 2010, arguing that the Convention mandates the return of an abducted child, unless the child’s return would result in grave physical or psychological harm. The Court determined that Maurizio was guilty of domestic abuse and that the boy would be at grave risk of harm if he returned to Italy without Lura, but that this risk could be mitigated if Lura returned with him, under certain conditions. Among them, Maurizio would have to dismiss the child abduction charges against Lura. He did not do so, and the Court denied Maurizio’s Hague petition.
Maurizio appealed the decision to the California Court of Appeals, which reversed the trial court’s decision also with conditions to mitigate the risk of harm to Leo upon his return, but did not make the boy’s return contingent upon these conditions. Lura’s requests to have the matter reheard by the Court of Appeals and reviewed by the California Supreme Court were denied. Since the appeals court did not make the boy's return contingent on the conditions that would mitigate the risk of harm, the trial court has now determined that conditions do not have to be made at all.
Once the boy returns to Italy on June 1, 2012, further action by U.S. courts would be moot.
Lura is confronted with the choice of returning to Italy with the boy, where a temporary order granting her custody could be modified immediately, even before she returns; she could also be arrested. If she does not return,the only other option for Leo will be foster care, until Italian government makes a decision regarding custody. The boy does not speak Italian.
This is a matter of public record. The decision by the California Court of Appeals will have far reaching implications. Lawyers around the country have commented that this decision puts the lives of all children at risk and sets a very dangerous precedent.
Lura has had the support of the nation’s leading experts in the Hague Convention and in domestic violence, as well as Angelina Jolie, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), and Joan Meier of DVLEAP (Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project). Hollywood living legend Ernest Borgnine is also speaking out on behalf of Lura and the boy.
Lura Calder’s attorneys are Peter Lauzon and Sharon Stark, in Los Angeles, 1-310-277-7117.
For further information, please see the published California Court of Appeals decision online at:
To contact the mother, Lura Calder: cell 310-425-6215, email: email@example.com
To contact Joan Meier :
Expert in the Hague Convention and Domestic Violence
Professor of Clinical Law and
Director, Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project
George Washington University Law School
KIND Executive Director Wendy Young can be contacted at WYoung@supportkind.org
Jeffrey L. Edleson, Ph.D.
Director, Minnesota Center Against Violence & Abuse
Professor and Director of Research, School of Social Work
University of Minnesota
tel: (612) 624-8795
fax: (612) 625-4288
The global leaders in Sustainability will be gathering together in Laguna Niguel, California this month to brainstorm better solutions for the world's Environmental issues. Past participants include Sir Richard Branson, President Bill Clinton, Bill Ford of Ford Motor Corporation and Paul Hawken, Author and Environmentalist. To learn more about the 2012 conference and the opportunity to participate virtually, click here.
Earth Day 2012
Earth Day is a day for people worldwide to celebrate the Earth and all of its amazing features. Senator Gaylord Nelson from Wisconsin first organized this day in 1970. Nelson’s goal was to educate the community about the environment, such as water, air, and pollution.
Although it is not a national holiday Earth Day is observed all over the globe. Events are held to increase awareness about the Earth’s natural environment and encouraging citizens to do their best to keep Earth clean. On Earth Day towns, cities, schools, and other communities all come together to appreciate our Mother Earth. Common events and activities held are planting trees, picking up trash, starting recycling programs, composting, conservation, and other educational activities.
For example, this year in Los Angeles a celebration of music, environment, animals, and humanity will be taking place called WorldFest. Informative speakers will be featuring such as John Salley, Debra Wilson, and Mariana Tosca. Participants will also learn about living a more earth-friendly lifestyle. This is one of the largest Earth Day festivals.
Also, in St. Louis there will be a festival featuring live music, local food, over 200 artists, and a recycling extravaganza called the 23rd Annual St. Louis Earth Day Festival . This is the 3rd-largest Earth Day celebration in the country.
If you haven’t already google the events happening in your local city or town and get involved in an Earth Day celebration today!
Article by Alexis Myers
Photo Courtesy of GOOGLE
The Powerful Women of the Green Generation
Where’s the perfect place women can share new ideas, opinions, and their love of answering environmental and social dilemmas using eco-friendly solutions? Through the Women of the Green Generation! This networking group connects women who have a passion and interest in being eco-friendly and keeping the Earth as green as it can be!
Women of the Green Generation was originally founded in June 2009 by Kris Willey. Willey has been featured in the LA Times, local editions of CNN, and a variety of E News publication and blogs. She is multi-faceted with talents in writing, music, yoga, entrepreneurship and public speaking.
Throughout the year this organization hosts a numerous amount of workshops, discussions, and conference in order to involve different members of the community. The organization is made up of all different kinds of women with interests ranging from recycling, nutrition and eating healthy, and how to best use green products.
On Saturday, May 19 Women of the Green Generation will host their third annual conference at Marrakesh House in Culver City, CA. Women who are interested in leading the change to better the environment despite economic, social, and political challenges should attend! This conference will bring forth people of similar interests and will include presentations, workshops, forums, fashion show, and so much more!
Click here for more information about this organization and to sign up for the conference if you are interested!
Article by Alexis Myers
Photo Courtesy of ChristyColeman.com
The Glamorous Life, Global Green's Pre-Oscar Bash
Well let the Oscar Festivities BEGIN!! At Global Green USA's 9th Annual Pre Oscar party, we celebrated all that is Sustainable, Eco-Friendly and Globally Conscious with the Stars of Hollywood. As we entered the Avalon in Hollywood, California, you could cut the excitement with a knife. Landscape artist Jamie Durie incorporated ECO designs throughout. The who's who of Hollywood were out to support the efforts of Global Green USA to "foster a global value shift towards a sustainable and secure future".
"Global Green USA has influenced more than $20 billion dollars for green building projects and educates millions of people about climate friendly solutions through its annual Red Carpet/Green Cars Oscars campaign. Global Green is also leading efforts to help rebuild a green New Orleans through its sustainable green village and green schools initiatives."
this event, we were first greeted by the Garden stylings of Landscape Artist, Jamie Durie. Chevy featured their electric vehicle, the 2012 Chevy Volt in their Chevy Volt Lounge. We were WOWed by the Gorgeous ECO Gowns of Oliver Tolentino. We were entertained by the best in the music industry. However, the musician or rather the "drummer" of the night was Shelia E. She worked the audience with a drumming technique that left us dancing into the we hours of the morning.
Talk about the "Glamorous Life", I never felt more glamorous than having the opportunity to dress up and dance the night away in celebration and support of an organization that places our Global Welfare as its No. 1 priority.
Many thanks to Richard Wegman, the C.O.O. of Global Green USA. We had an AMAZING night!! Keep up the GOOD WORK!!
Learn more about Global Green USA Here.
Photos Courtesy of Joann Guilfoil Photography and www.GlobalGreen.org
Article by Birungi Ives
Shows to Watch:
February 10th, 2012 - The GreenShows Collection at 10:30a - 11:30a
DESIGNERS to Watch this Season:
Organic by John Patrick
EDUN Mens Spring Summer 2012
EDUN Womens Spring Summer 2012
Sisters on the Runway: Fashion Saving Lives
In 2005 three high school girls named Elizabeth Eddy, Gabriela Graham, and Juliana Colangelo, at Montclair High School in Montclair, New Jersey began their idea for a fashion show benefiting victims of domestic violence. Little did they know that Sisters on the Runway would one day raise awareness and over $50,000 for those affected by domestic violence.
By getting local boutiques and shops to donate clothes for the fashion show, they were able to raise money through selling tickets at the door and raffle prizes. Students were so excited by this event that fellow high school students Alissar Taremi and Kaelyn Siversky decided to bring this event to their college, the University of Massachusetts Amherst in spring 2011.
Besides attending the show, individuals can help by buying recently added merchandise from Sisters on the Runway by clicking here or by simply making a donation.
All of the proceeds from these events go to local domestic violence shelters to help these shelters sustain themselves. And in addition to the money that is raised, promoting awareness about the issue of domestic violence is an important part about these fashion shows. Since these fashion shows have taken place at both high school and colleges it is beneficial that younger members of the community are getting involved and learning about this issue while having fun.
Article by Alexis Myers
Photos Courtesy of Style.com and Vinepod.com
2012 The Golden Globes, THE EDGE OF GLORY
Saturday, January 14, 2012
It was a laid back Saturday with my boys. We had just returned from a 1 and 1/2 hour bike ride around Malibu. We finished a Skype call with my husband's parents and brother in England. Then, I popped into the shower to start my deeply involved beauty endeavor for... Da Da Da Daah… the Golden Globes. Now, how did little old me get tickets to the Golden Globes? The thing is...at that point, I hadn't. I just believed that I was meant to attend. Something inside told me that I was supposed to be there. Watched in 120 countries with 90 million viewers, I knew it would be an AMAZING platform to not only celebrate and honor the BEST in film and television, but to connect with like-minded individuals that have the power to greatly increase the awareness of various environmental and global advocacy initiatives. You literally have the world's attention on such a night! Lord knows, I have many things to share!
As my husband looked at me sideways in regards to me preparing to attend an event without tickets for entry, I deep conditioned my hair and had both a manicure and pedicure. I was not fooling around. I was serious and determined. Going to this event was bigger than just the Red Carpet pomp and circumstance, which I love, but it was about what is POSSIBLE when you BELIEVE that ANYTHING IS....
So, Saturday remained quiet and peaceful. I continued to prepare. All the while, I was shooting emails, phone calls, tweets and more to connect with as many people as possible to make this happen. Please understand, BELIEF is one thing, but coupled with PASSIVE ACTION, that is when you connect with THE TRUE POWER OF INTENTION.
Sunday, January, 15, 2012
Today is the day! The Golden Globes are tonight. Without a doubt, I knew that I would be there. Email after email, I was hearing that they would try to see what they could do. I was so grateful to my friends and colleagues that were rallying around to help make this happen but, then… email and phones went dead. The replies dried up and I knew I had to stop reaching out. My energy was starting to wane. So, I shut off both my phone and computer. Then, I took a nap. Yes...a nap! Oprah said that if you come to a point where you are unsure of what to do… do nothing! So, that is exactly what I did. I stopped and did nothing!
Well, it was coming to 3pm PST and there was still no word from anyone. Then, an email went "Bing" on my phone. It was from a dear friend in Europe. She knows Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. She said that she would reach out to them and see if they had room for a guest. At this time, the Red Carpet shows were about to begin. I made PEACE with the fact that it was very unlikely that I would make it to the Award ceremony.
The Award Ceremony started at 5pm and I was still in my comfy clothes. I was watching with my boys and cracking up at all of Ricky Gervais's jokes. Damn, he was good! I saw Angelina and Brad and thought to myself that I could have been sitting right next to them. Before you know it, it was 6:30pm and only 1 and 1/2 hours left of the Globes. Then, I got a text from a contact that was working at the show. He lets me know that there were some after parties at The Beverly Hilton. I then quickly texted my girlfriend Joann and I asked her if she would like to go with me. Of course, she replied, "Are you SERIOUS?" I said, “Come on girl!” She replied, "Do you have tickets?" I said, "No, but it won't be a problem, we will figure it out!"
So, it was now 7pm. Joann was going to arrive at 7:30pm. Since my hair and nails were done, all I had to do was my make-up and get dressed. Then, Joann arrived and off we went!
At around 8:30pm, we got to Beverly Hills with The Beverly Hilton in view. Joann found a parking spot outside of The Peninsula Hotel. I suggested to Joann that we go inside and get a drink. Honestly, I had to get a drink to help gather my thoughts and some Dutch courage. I still had no idea how we were going to get in. On the way in, I saw Evan Rachel Wood and Co. waiting for their limo to head to the after party. She was no longer in her Gucci Premiere Dress, now she was in a tux! Then, I called my contact working the event. He told me that there was no way to get in without a ticket, which just confirmed for me that I would just have to get two tickets, SOME HOW...SOME WAY! PERIOD, NEVER SAY DIE!
After one drink at The Peninsula and an interesting conversation with a Miss California coach, Joann and I headed to The Beverly Hilton Hotel. It was like Fort Knox. There were so many check points. Then, an idea popped into my head. I had been to these events before, not many YET, but enough. When I was at the CNN Heroes Award Ceremony, I had tickets waiting under my name at the will call desk. So, I thought why don't I just ask where the will call desk is and figure it out from there. So, that’s just what I did!
At the will call desk, there were 4 or 5 different stations. Each station was for a particular after party, i.e. HBO after party, NBC Universal after party and so on. Well, here we were! What do I do now? Then, I had another idea. I thought… I know a number of people in the industry now. Why don't I just mention a name? I won't tell you who I mentioned, but, let me just say that I mentioned this name and was offered two tickets with a snap of a finger. It was just like that! A MIRACLE!
With our tickets in hand, Joann and I made our way to the NBC Universal after party. Check point after check point, we made it to the L'OREAL make-up and hair touch up room. Joann and I got our make-up touched up and off we went! Upon entry to the NBC Universal after party, I had the opportunity to congratulate Elizabeth McGovern for "Downton Abbey’s" Golden Globe win for best miniseries or motion picture made for Television. It was an AMAZING start to a very GLAMOROUS evening.
Joann and I saw Tiffani Thiessen being interviewed on the Red Carpet. We danced the night away to MC Lyte's DJ skills. We met Janelle Monae and Ross Mathews. We enjoyed cocktails and beautiful food! My favorite, the mini beef wellingtons, YUM! So, we danced some more to work off the food and drinks, all the way until the end of the party. Unfortunately, no Brad or Angelina. Next time...I'll see them at the Oscars. Wink...Wink...
All in all, we had an AMAZING night! With a little action and a lot of FAITH we had the time of our lives. Although, I did not meet the people that I thought I would. I'll tell you who I did meet...ME! I met a woman that no longer allows FEAR to dictate her life or her decisions. I met a woman that KNOWS ANYTHING is POSSIBLE, as I MOVED GRACEFULLY PASS THE EDGE of GLORY and into the LAND of INFINITE POSSIBILITIES!
Article by Birungi Ives
Photos Courtesy of Joann Guilfoil and www.justjared.buzznet.com