‘Ms. Meta’ on frontline, empowering others facing HIV

At 62, Meta Smith-Davis is often celebrated as a hero for her work with HIV/AIDS. The self-described to’ up from the flo’ up, ex-con, drug-addicted, homeless Black woman living with HIV, says, “All I did was clean their mirror so they could see what I saw… All I did was clean the mirror so that they could do the work.” The work, she said, is being able to come to terms with an HIV-positive diagnosis and doing everything necessary to live a whole, healthy life.

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Fashions’ ‘Next Big’ designers hail from Baton Rouge

When it comes to fashion destinations Baton Rouge is city that could be at the bottom of the list, but Christopher John Rogers and Oonarissa Brown-Bernard are changing that. Besides dominating the charts this year?  What do Cardi B and Sza have in common? They turn to Rogers for his 80’s glamour meets punk rock … Continue reading

Fact: Eliminating stigmas can reduce the spread of HIV

The fact remains: There are still many stigmas around HIV/AIDS which are critical barriers to preventing the disease from spreading. In a city like Baton Rouge where new HIV diagnoses  register as some of the highest in the nation, prevention is critical to stopping the disease and saving lives, said Tim Young, executive director of … Continue reading

With HIV rates topping the nation, Baton Rouge needs HAART, Open Health, and PreP

In a city with the highest rates of newly diagnosed HIV cases in the nation, is HAART positioned to slow down the spread of the virus that cause AIDS?

Baton Rouge study looks at whether exercise improves memory for older Blacks

Scientists at LSU Pennington Biomedical Research Center are recruiting participants for a study on dementia prevention in older Blacks. The project is unique because few studies to date specifically developed behavior change interventions for older Blacks that target preventing dementia, said Robert Newton, Ph.D., who designed the project with Owen Carmichael, Ph.D. “The goal of … Continue reading

Trading Black Histories: Louisiana, California middle schoolers meet by chance while competing in national research contest

SILVER SPRINGS, MD—In life, there are many times when things happen and very few words can convey what’s occurred. That’s exactly what happened when two studentsfrom opposite ends of the United States happened to cross paths while competing in the 2018 National History Day contest held at the University of Maryland, College Park. The young … Continue reading

Baton Rouge native participates in world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise

A 2017 Scotlandville Magnet High School graduate and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of the world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise, Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC). Seaman Apprentice Crystal Paul is a culinary specialist aboard USS Dewey, currently operating out of San Diego, California. A Navy culinary specialist … Continue reading

First Black to walk in space visits Baton Rouge

On June 26, Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO of the National Math + Science Initiative (NMSI), visited Baton Rouge to kick off NMSI’s Laying the Foundation Teacher training at Woodlawn High School.  With ongoing support from ExxonMobil, the popular training program was recently expanded to an additional 400 teachers across the state, doubling the number of … Continue reading

Louisiana legislators look to expand ‘Payday’ lending, harming borrowers

Legislators are voting on a bill to expand predatory lending in Louisiana by allowing payday and car title lenders to issue “installment loans” with annual interest rates of up to 167 percent. Policy analysts with the Louisiana Budget Project said the bill will considerable harm vulnerable borrowers getting loans they can not afford. The bill is scheduled for final passage in the Senate on April, 16, 2018.

Dr. King, Alton Sterling, and the Difficult Days Ahead

This is America 50 years after King’s assassination.  The relative progress made in civil rights since April 4, 1968 is rife with tragic contradiction and complexity.  King likely did not dream that after climbing to the “mountaintop” our first words would not be “free at last” but rather “Black lives matter.” 

Louisiana creatives flourish in light of Black Panther

As the sun rises on the blockbuster Black Panther movie, it illuminates the work of Louisiana Black creatives including an English professor who writes and lectures on Afrofuturism, a comic creator who uses historic air legends to pen a new future, and an artist who embraces the imagery and passion of Afrofantasy in developing the … Continue reading

Baton Rouge gains its sixth community pharmacist

“My brother and I are here to build and strengthen our hometown community of Baton Rouge. We are here to provide HOPE to the community where we were born and raised,” said Orlando J. Palmer Jr., pharmacist.

Baton Rouge sailor reflects on year of recruiting in America’s Navy

First Class Jalisa Green, a recruiter assigned to Navy Recruiting District San Antonio, shows that not shying away from hard work and responsibility does not go unnoticed. Green, a Louisiana native, longed to travel and see the world beyond her hometown of Baton Rouge.  She believed joining the Navy would give her that opportunity. After enlisting … Continue reading

Henry Turner Jr. Day celebrates a musical, community champion

A few months ago, a middle-aged black man with his gray beard lending a distinguished air to his casual summer attire walked into the deli section of a popular South Baton Rouge grocery store. The server recognized him and said how much she had enjoyed his music at a recent outdoor festival. She then commented … Continue reading

‘We need as many natural remedies as possible’; SU, LSU marijuana programs may help

In a state where  marijuana is still illegal, Southern University, LSU secure roles in growing crop to combat diseases     Advanced Biometrics LLC of Lafayette, La., recently won the contract to curate marijuana for the Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center following a Sept. 22 decision by the Southern University System Board of … Continue reading

Baton Rouge Councilman’s use of slur is an attempt to intimidate, bully

” ‘Gang-bangers’ and the more common ‘thug’ are racist pejoratives for Black men, part of an attempt to deem them unworthy of Constitutional protections, human decency, or justice,”  writes Christopher Tyson, LSU law professor, “As a spokesperson for the Union of Police, (Metro Councilman John Delgado’s) actions carry the imprimatur of law enforcement.  Therefore they can only be read as a cheap attempt to intimidate and bully.” 

Dialogue on race necessary to move Louisiana beyond fear

The reactions to the Department of Justice’s decision to not charge police in the shooting death of Alton Sterling have divided largely along racial lines. Baton Rouge like many cities was racially segregated at its founding.Although the city has undergone “desegregation,” in the last several decades clear racial divisions exist most vividly with Florida Blvd … Continue reading

300 Black women sought for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome research

LSU’S Pennington Biomedical Launches New Study Aimed at Understanding Genes Involved in Common Hormonal Disorder Affecting Women A new study at LSU’s Pennington Biomedical Research Center is looking to identify genes that increase the likelihood of a woman developing Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). PCOS is a hormonal disorder which prevents many women from getting pregnant. … Continue reading

Baker native serves on Navy’s largest warship

As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied upon assets, Louisiana native Timothy Walker and other Eisenhower sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes.

Community support turns Facebook postings into published book

  When Baton Rouge writer and teacher Donney Rose set out to pay homage to the vastness of Black identities during Black History Month, he had no idea how much his community would support his month-long social media project. Each day in Feb. 2017, Rose dedicated a Facebook post to a prose-style “shout-out” in recognition of … Continue reading

Losing healthcare access, Medicaid expansion too risky for Louisiana

Many of the gains that have been made over the last few years are on the verge of being lost. In order to ensure that our state continues to move forward in providing access to healthcare for all of its residents, we must take action now prior to the U.S. Senate vote.

‘I am that next legacy,’ says Alton Sterling’s oldest son

“I am that next legacy. I am here after my dad,” said Cameron Sterling, 16-year-old son of Alton Sterling who was killed by Baton Rouge police, July 5, 2016.

Teens deliver resilient poetry following a season of tragedy

“Here Still” was the mantra of this year’s ALL CITY Teen Poetry Slam Festival, a theme imagined from a season of tragedy that both publicly and personally affected festival participants. Held over two weekends in April throughout downtown Baton Rouge, the festival’s culminating event on April 8, punctuated the youths’ tribute to the resilience of the … Continue reading

‘Can you be a little less aggressive?’ Louisiana councilwoman responds to #BlackWomenatWork

“It is time that every Black woman garner the respect and credibility that we’ve worked hard to achieve,” writes Erika L Green, Baton Rouge city council woman. “We’ve banned together with a measly hashtag and demanded everyone realize that #BlackWomenatWork WILL be respected and NOT intimidated.”

Ponchatoula native brings ‘Something Miraculous’ to Baton Rouge stage, March 26

It was a matter of fate that Lady Toussaint Duchess ended up bringing her highly-anticipated stage play to Baton Rouge. She had recently returned to visit her family after an extended stay in Africa for seven months and was watching the news the night Baton Rouge elected its first black female mayor, Sharon Weston Broome. … Continue reading

Madam Mayor: Meet the Black female mayors of Louisiana

“This class of Black women mayors represents the single largest group to serve the state simultaneously,” said Vernon “Step” Martin, president of the Louisiana Municipal Black Caucus Association.

‘Fat N—-r’; 500 people petition to disbar chief criminal judge for racial slur

NAACP, Southern Law Center speak out A petition to disbar and unseat Louisiana Judge Michael Ervin has garnered more than 500 signatures in less than 12 hours. Created Wednesday, Feb. 7 on change.org, the petition is addressed to the Louisiana Bar Association and recounts an argument between Erwin and Kaneitra Johnson as reported by Thelisia S. … Continue reading

Baton Rouge charter pushes to keep 600 students, remain open

When Jonathan Hage traveled to Baton Rouge following the August flood, the Charter School USA director’s first concerns were his teachers’ and students’ well-being. Along with his wife and other executives, Hage brought hope and money—each teacher received $500. “It’s not money. It’s love,” Sherry Hage told the teachers. “We want you to know that … Continue reading

COMMENTARY: Has the Electoral College outlived its usefulness?

Has the Electoral College outlived its usefulness? “No!”  The Electoral College was one of many foresighted policies that the Founding Fathers established though the U.S. Constitution..  How to choose a president through a delicate balance of the individual states and the federal government and between the Executive and Legislative branches of government was the challenge.  … Continue reading

Things get uncomfortable’ when protesters Blackout BR, interrupt policing meeting

As officer-involved shootings cities around the country, frustrated citizens are continuing their fight for justice. With each shooting that has occurred, dash cam footage has been released, surveillance and other forms of film have been released to ensure complete disclosure. But, unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case with the deadly shooting of Alton Sterling. After … Continue reading

Many online resources available for Louisiana disaster survivors

Public and private entities have information online ready to help if you’re a survivor of Louisiana’s recent severe storms and floods. Here is a listing of many online resources available to disaster survivors. Clothing, Food, Shelter, etc. 2-1-1 is a single access point for resources like food, clothing, shelter, financial assistance and health resources. Visit www.louisiana211.org and follow … Continue reading

From flooded homes, President Obama tells America to ‘stay focused on this’

On Tuesday, Aug. 23, President Barack Obama toured neighborhoods in Zachary, LA., that were severely damaged by flooding, then made the following remarks:       Well, to begin with, I just want to say thank you to the outstanding officials behind me who have been on the ground, working 24/7 since this flood happened.  … Continue reading

Share your Louisiana Great Flood rescue, survival story

Local newspapers seek community stories on the rescue and survival experiences of South Louisiana residents during throughout this historic flooding. Tell us… Who was your rescue hero? Did you find support and help in an unpredictable way or from an unusual person? Did a calvary of neighbors save you by boat? Were you the family … Continue reading

City left with growing embers of grief

Violent death became real — even surreal — in that moment. Like it did when Alton Sterling’s 15-year-old son, Cameron, wailed on television, begging for his father. This is post-friendly Baton Rouge… Things will change because they died–because all of them died.

City bears embers of mourning, grief

iolent death became real — even surreal — in that moment. Like it did when Alton Sterling’s 15-year-old son, Cameron, wailed on television, begging for his father. This is post-friendly Baton Rouge. Things will change because they died–because all of them died.

Americans for Blane Salamoni Facebook page surfaces

​In the wake of the funerals for the three slain police officers in Baton Rouge, LA, a disturbing Facebook page has been exposed. The page, Americans For Blane Salamoni, has enraged a number of social media users as it promotes a rhetoric of hate along with racist propaganda in an effort to justify the controversial … Continue reading

How to talk with children about tragedy

Today’s tragic event in Baton Rouge has left us all with many questions. But for parents, it can open up a new conversation with children who may have trouble understanding exactly what’s going on. Dr. Shaun Kimberly and Sharon Wesberry of Our Lady of The Lake Children’s Hospital have pulled together a few tips from OLOL … Continue reading

I fit the prototype: large and Black. Am I Next?

With the home front being a national headline, three Baton Rouge men tell their stories of what it is to be the prototype victim for police brutality. As they leave their homes everyday with the notion that they could be “next” just because they are large, Black men. 

You’ve told Alton Sterling’s past records. Now stop ignoring the officers’ disturbing use of force, deep family ties

Salamoni’s complaint history and deep-rooted connection to the police department should seem quite alarming to anyone hoping for a fair case.

Pro Bono legal support established for Louisiana protesters

In wake of death of Alton Sterling, civil rights organizations launch Pro Bono Legal Support Program to defend rights of protesters in Louisiana. Demonstrators are encouraged to contact 866-459-1220 for assistance if subject to or faced with risk of arrest while protesting or demonstrating.

Southern opens 2016 football season at ULM

Southern University football will open the first two weeks of the 2016 schedule on the road against in-state opponents ULM and Tulane before beginning the final year of the Southwestern Athletic Conference’s nine-game mandate on Sept. 17. The Jaguars travel to Monroe to face ULM on Sept. 3 in the first-ever meeting between the two … Continue reading

Developers sought to reinvent Entergy site, acres in Baton Rouge

East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority is seeking developers to reinvent the former Entergy buildings and surrounding six acres at 1509 Government Street.   The RDA issued a Request for Expressions of Interest asking developers to offer innovative ideas for returning the buildings to commerce. The RFEI asks developers, business owners and others for conceptual plans. … Continue reading

Gauthier leaves McKinley to serve with Naval Beach Group TWO

NORFOLK–A 2014 McKinley Senior High School graduate and Baton Rouge native is serving in the U.S. Navy with Naval Beach Group TWO (NBG 2). Seaman Tyran’e Gauthier is working with the beach group operating out of Virginia Beach, Virginia. A Navy seaman is responsible for training other new personnel and handling check-in for incoming personnel. … Continue reading

Green takes national college media awards

Southern University Baton Rouge student Don Green, won the Photo Shoot-out competition in the Best of Show contest to earn a David L. Adams Apple Award at the national College Media Association’s (CMA) convention in New York City, March 12-15, 2016. For the second consecutive year, the SUBR Office of Student Media has earned the … Continue reading

N.O. native T. Geronimo Johnson wins Ernest Gaines Award

Welcome to Braggsville by T. Geronimo Johnson has been selected as winner of the 2015 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence. Now in its ninth year, the Gaines Award is a nationally acclaimed $10,000 prize created by donors of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. The award recognizes outstanding work from rising Black fiction writers … Continue reading

BR Bus Boycott commemorated by Toni Morrison Society’s Bench by the Road Project

The Toni Morrison Society has selected Baton Rouge as the next site for its Bench by the Road Project, which commemorates places significant in Blacks history. On Feb. 6, 2016, a bench will be unveiled in honor of Blacks involved in the historic 1953 Baton Rouge bus boycott, which was the precursor to the Montgomery … Continue reading

Former SU history professor Arthur Tolson passes away

Arthur L. Tolson, Ph.D, a longtime faculty member in the Southern University Baton Rouge Department of History, died Wednesday, November 18, 2015, in Baton Rouge. He was 91. SU System President-Chancellor Ray L. Belton issues the following statement and condolences:  “The Southern University System is tremendously saddened by the passing of former history professor Dr. … Continue reading

Baton Rouge community learns ‘quick’ CPR

Studies have shown the Hands-Only CPR method is equally as effective as conventional mouth-to-mouth CPR, and people are more likely to feel comfortable performing it.

Toldson sets ‘Strategic Vision’ for Southern University

Weeks ahead of the June 30 deadline to select the next president of the Southern University System, the three finalists have been invited to the Baton Rouge campus on Thursday, June 11, for interviews with faculty, staff, students, alumni and stakeholders. But one candidate–Ivory Toldson, Ph.D–has already reached out to the Jaguar Nation via social … Continue reading

Black journalists award conference scholarships

The Baton Rouge Area Association of Black Journalists is awarding five scholarships to students and a professional member of the organization to attend the 40th Annual National Association of Black Journalists Convention and Career Fair in Minneapolis, August 5-9.   LSU students Cecil Rucker and Amber Smith, Baton Rouge Community College student Kara St. Cyr, … Continue reading