Myra Panache in conjunction with Panache Report proudly present: "Black Powerbrokers!"

San Francisco powerbroker/socialite (Pamela Joyner) was profiled last year for her outstanding accomplishments in the investment industry. President Obama has appointed Joyner to his committee on the Arts and the Humanities. Joyner is also considered a prominent arts patron.

Rewind (Backstory):

Pamela Joyner has 25 years of experience in the financial industry. Before launching Avid Partners, LLC (a very lucrative investment firm in San Francisco), Joyner worked at Merrill Lynch, Kidder Peabody and Fidelity Management Trust.

Joyner has a MBA from Harvard University.

In Related News: Forbes.com is the owner of "Investopedia.com."  This is an online stock and financial dictionary for experienced investors and beginners. This site also offers tutorials. Warren Buffett has also been featured on this site.

R. Donahue Peebles heads the Peebles Corporation and manages a $4 billion dollar real estate portfolio. R. Donahue Peebles is the chairman and chief executive officer of the Peebles Corporation, considered the country's largest African American real estate development and ownership company with a multi-billion dollar development portfolio of luxury hotels, high-rise residential and Class A commercial properties in Washington, D.C., Las Vegas and Miami Beach. The portfolio is valued at $4 billion dollars.

Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Peebles expressed an early interest in politics. At the age of 14, he volunteered for DC City Council Chair Sterling Tucker’s campaign during the summer of 1974. From 1976 to 1978, Mr. Peebles attended the United States Capitol Page School in the capital at the Library of Congress. During his two years on Capitol Hill, Mr. Peebles served as a page (where he made various political contacts), and a Legislative Intern in the office of Representative Ronald V. Dellums (D. Calif) and served as a staff aid to Representative John Conyers, Jr.

Peebles was the first African American to own a beach resort (The Royal Palms) in Miami. He later sold the property for $128 million dollars.

Peebles later purchased the historic Miami Bath Club. Two years earlier, he became the first African American member.

Construction is currently underway on an non-gaming hotel in Las Vegas (above), valued at $2.5 billion dollars.

Peebles has supported various congressional, mayoral and gubernatorial candidates over the years. Mr. Peebles serves as a member of President Barack Obama’s National Finance Committee where he established himself as one of the campaign’s leading fundraisers in the nation.

In 2007, Peebles authored a book "The Peebles Principles," above.

Tracy Maitland (above-center) heads Advent Capital Management. Maitland continues to land among the top convertible bond and high-yield asset managers, according to the Investor Force database.

Over the past two years, $2 billion has poured in from corporations, foundations and high-net-worth individuals.

Maitland, a Bronx native and Columbia University alumnus, sits at the helm of a $3.6 billion asset-management business which includes a closed-end mutual fund that trades on the New York Stock Exchange and successful hedge fund. Maitland is also Russell Simmons' money manager.

Raymone Bain is a spokeswoman from the public relations firm Davis, Bain & Associates Inc., based in Washington DC. She is known for her representation of high-profile individuals including: Michael Jackson, Serena Williams, Babyface, the musical group Boyz II Men, the estate of Sammy Davis, Jr., and other high-profile athletes, entertainers, political figures and political organizations, including former DC Mayor, Marion Barry.

In 2006, Bain was made general manager of The Michael Jackson Company. In 2009 Bain said she was suing her former boss, Michael Jackson, for $44 million in damages relating to her time with The Michael Jackson Company.

Ms. Bain, a native of Augusta, GA, moved to Washington, DC with President Jimmy Carter in 1976. At The White House, she served as Special Assistant to OMB Director, Bert Lance and his successor, James T. McIntyre, Jr. Upon the election of President Ronald Reagan in 1980, Ms. Bain was retained as Transition Assistant to OMB Director Designate, David Stockman. She is a graduate of Spelman College (1976) and the Georgetown University Law Center, Juris Doctor, (1984).

Ms. Bain was one of the first women in the United States to own a full- service sports management firm. What made this challenging endeavor so unique, was the fact that the majority of her clients were marquee names in the historically male-dominated boxing industry. These included world champions: Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns, Hector “Macho” Camacho, Terry Norris, Buster Douglas and Donnie LaLonde.


Comedian George Lopez told his agent Christy Haubegger a couple of weeks ago that he wanted to campaign publicly for Sen. Barack Obama. Haubegger, an executive with the Hollywood talent firm Creative Artists Agency, knew the person to call: her old friend from the Stanford Law Review, Tony West, above.

West is one of the California finance co-chairs of Obama's campaign, helping him raise a record $65 million in the state, and he also advises the candidate's national finance committee. And he is more than Obama's confidant. West is part of a new generation of African American politicians who grew up outside the black churches or the civil rights community and now are finding their voice - and political power - in the tone of Obama's campaign.

West's bulging Rolodex, like Obama's, is full of contacts made while studying at an Ivy League university (Harvard) and editing his law school review (at Stanford). That network, in West's case, was augmented by working on six presidential campaigns (including both of Bill Clinton's) and at an A-list San Francisco corporate law firm (Morrison & Foerster).

Like Obama, the 42-year-old West knows from experience how race can affect a campaign - even when the candidate tries to transcend it. Eight years ago, the former federal and state prosecutor was running for a San Jose-area state Assembly seat. It was a nasty campaign, with partisans on both sides hitting hard. Days before the primary, voters received a mailer alluding to false claims that West was living in Oakland. His face was darkened and placed inside an Oakland Raiders logo, to make him appear "as if a gangsta were running," as the San Jose Metro newspaper put it. West lost to Manny Diaz, a Democrat, who eventually was elected to the Assembly.

"I think he came out of that race a little less idealistic," said his sister-in-law, San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris, who has endorsed Obama. West married Harris' sister Maya, his best friend from law school, and they have an adult daughter, Meena. "He is so smart, and he always sees the positive in everything, but that was below the belt."

"I certainly hope that he would run for office again," said former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, who called West "one of my mentees." Brown, who has not endorsed a Democratic presidential candidate, said West "could be, like Obama, one of these candidates that transcends race. He is exceptionally gifted."

West said he lost none of his idealism and dismissed the mailer as the "stuff that happens in politics. I think it says more about the process than it does about the voters.

"I think it is sometimes easier for people to appeal to things that are negative," he said. "It is easier sometimes for campaigns to appeal to things that frighten us. The fact that campaigns may do that, and do it successfully, doesn't make it right and doesn't make it lasting."

Trying to look beyond racial politics is "generational," said Charles Henry, a professor of African American studies at UC Berkeley and an expert on black leadership. "This is a generation that grew up outside the black churches or the civil rights community. They're less likely to see a racial slight than an older generation.

"They're more likely to have met through elite universities or law schools," Henry said. "They've taken advantage of the gains of the civil rights movement," even if they were in diapers during its heyday.

Henry and other analysts said examples of this generation of black politicians include Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick; Newark, N.J., Mayor (and Stanford alumnus) Cory Booker; and Rep. Laura Richardson, D-Long Beach, who has a master's in business administration and was recently elected from a largely Latino district. Richardson, unlike the other two, supports Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton.

"Tony's ascension in the various worlds of politics is largely due to the fact that he has always been very meticulous about maintaining his networks - and they are networks that are beyond California," said Sam Rodriguez, an unaffiliated political consultant who worked with West when Rodriguez led the California Democratic Party.

Kerman Maddox, a onetime aide to former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley who runs his own Southern California consultancy and is African American, said West has shown him the fundraising breadth of the black middle class. Much of the $3 million raised at a fundraiser at Oprah Winfrey's Santa Barbara estate last year came from middle-class African Americans, Maddox said.

"I was surprised at how much money came from African Americans in Southern California," said Maddox, who teaches political science at the University of Southern California and who is an Obama fundraiser. "It used to be that campaigns would come to the (African American) community and ask us to get out the vote. But they have the money. There just haven't been people like Barack Obama and Tony West to tap into it before."

And when it comes to pulling in big contributions, Maddox said West is "the closer." His power, say Maddox, Rodriguez and others who have worked with him, lies in West's upbeat nature. It's an inclusive charm that enabled him to be a top adviser to Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums, who supports Clinton for president, and to Obama-endorser Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland.

But "Tony isn't relentlessly upbeat because he's successful," said law school classmate Haubegger. "Tony's successful because he is so upbeat."

West was born in San Francisco and raised in San Jose. His parents - his father was from Georgia and his mother from Alabama - migrated to the Bay Area for opportunities they couldn't get there. His father, an engineer, was the first in his family to go college. His mother, a schoolteacher, still gives piano lessons.

Their support and grounding, friends and West say, help him to see Obama's success through a historical context, not a racial one.

West noted Obama's overwhelming victory in the South Carolina primary, which has a majority black electorate. The days before the contest were filled with racially tinged stories about whether Obama was "black enough" or who deserved more credit for federal civil rights laws, President Lyndon Johnson or the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

But Obama's geographic sweep of the state "confirmed what I felt before," West said. "Even when we saw some of the attempts to make it about race, the margin of victory there demonstrated that it was about more than race."

West met Obama shortly after the Illinois senator's star-making speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention and knew he would work for whatever higher office Obama might seek. But West doesn't think Obama would have had such success 20 years ago.

"Something like this is the unique convergence of the right person and the right time. A lot of it is about Obama, a lot of it is about the moment, and a lot of it is about who came before him," West said. "In many ways, Barack's candidacy is possible because Jesse Jackson ran (in 1988). Because Shirley Chisholm ran (in 1972). Because America was at least exposed to someone who is African American running for the highest office in the land. That gave him, in part, the ability to be someone who can transcend race."

For years, pundits have touted West as a similar candidate, or as he self-deprecatingly repeats one assessment, as "the best candidate to have never won a race." He acknowledged that his political future might be harder because of a client he represented in 2002: Marin County native John Walker Lindh, the "American Taliban."

A month after he began working at the San Francisco law firm Morrison & Foerster, partner James Brosnahan asked him to join Lindh's four-member defense team. First, West had to be assured that Lindh did not take up arms against Americans and didn't help plan the Sept. 11. 2001, terrorist attacks. In 2002, Walker pleaded guilty to serving in the Taliban army and carrying weapons, and he is serving a 20-year sentence.

Why did West accept a case that Republican strategist Dan Schnur said at the time might end his political career? Because he was concerned about the human rights and due process that might have been denied to Lindh.

"When you think about the worst thing that terrorists can do to this country, it is that they can make you rethink your fundamental commitments to those principles that make our nation unique and make us great. I really believe that in working on that case, I was recommitting myself to those principles of due process, fairness - things that separate us from most nations in this world and which make us unique," West said.

While several analysts - including UC Berkeley Professor Henry - said it would be a stretch to link West's private legal work to the Obama campaign, Henry said it may limit where West can again run for office.

"I would think it would be a pretty desperate sign," West said of such an attack on Obama. "Barack has touched something very deep and very important in the American psyche with his message, and people are going to resort to crazy ways to try to refute that."

Source: Joe Garofoli @ The SF Chronicle


Mekita Faiye is an exceptional and extraordinary young woman. In regards to accomplishments, she's the female version of Hill Harper. Like Harper, Mekita is also an thespian/scholar.

Mekita's film "Speed Dating," was produced by her production company, "Eizzel Entertainment." The film opened last Friday in 8 cities across the country, co-starring Vanessa Simmons and Holly Robinson Peete. "Speed Dating," is defined as an universal African-American romantic comedy. "Speed Dating," is well done and enjoyable, from beginning to end. Variety featured "Speed Dating," yesterday on page 11.

Mekita has also appeared as an actress in several films.

Mekita has a PhD in Electrical computer engineering and she currently attends one of the most prestigious filmmaking programs at an renowned University in Los Angeles (only 25 students are selected to attend this program each year).

Mekita speaks French fluently, she's also a martial artist and she enjoys horseback riding and skiing.

More on Mekita below:

Favorite travel destination: Rome, Italy.

Ultimate goals: Producing, acting and motivational speaking.

Role models: My mother, Oprah & Obama

Favorite types of music: R&B, old school, jazz and early hip-hop.

Future Hobby: Learn how to surf, so I can ride the waves in Hawaii.


Dr. Ebony Utley is an exceptional and extraordinary African-American woman.

Dr. Utley is an thirtysomething assistant professor at California State University Long Beach.

Dr. Utley has also sat on an Yale advisory board on the anthology of rap.

Her favorite travel destination is London.

Her hobbies include: Tennis and bicycling.

Favorite entertainer: Usher Raymond.

Favorite poet: Sonya Sanchez.

Dr. Utley likes to relax to the sounds of Jagged Edge.

Nicki Minaj has also been the subject of one of Dr. Utley's lectures on hip-hop.


Ebony A. Utley, Ph.D. is an expert in hip hop, race, and love relationships. Her forthcoming book, The Gangsta’s God: The Quest for Respectability in Hip Hop (Praeger, forthcoming), blends rap, religion, and urban African American history to reveal how a God-sanctioned gangsta identity empowers young black people facing declining economic opportunities.

Ebony Utley’s additional areas of expertise include race and relationships. She examines how Americans talk about race and racism, asks probing questions about women’s experiences with infidelity, investigates African American beliefs about marriage, and surveys youth definitions of love.

Utley is co-editor of Hip Hop’s Languages of Love (2009) and on the advisory board for The Yale Anthology of Rap (2010). Her work has appeared in Critical Studies in Media Communication, Rhetoric and Public Affairs, The Journal of Men’s Studies, The Western Journal of Black Studies, and Women and Language.

In addition to national radio and print outlet appearances, Utley lectures at universities across the country and is a contributing blogger for Ms. Magazine. Her blogs have been cited by Essence, Feminist Philosophers, Jezebel, Soapdom, and Racialicious.

Ebony Utley holds a certificate in Journalism and a B.A. in Speech Communication (with highest distinction), both from Indiana University Bloomington. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. in communication studies at Northwestern University as a Jacob K. Javits fellow. She is currently an assistant professor of Communication Studies at California State University Long Beach.







return to top