Ernest "Doc" West III., Born and raised here in Columbus, Ohio. I am 46 years old. I graduated from Mifflin High Schoolin 1990. I attended the Ohio State University where I studied Education. I graduated in 1995 with a B.S. in Elementary Education. In 1996, I obtained a Masters degree in Elementary Education as well. My last degree came in 2001 and it is a Masters in Education Administration. I am currently 3 years into my Doctoral program at OSU. I have been working with Columbus’ youth for over 23 years.
While in college, I became a mentor for Franklin County Children Services’ Simba Program. I mentored several young men in that program. I also worked as an after-school/summer program Coordinator at an OSU graduate housing development. There, I tutored students, planned field trips and organized various activities for the students. I have also worked at the Community Godman Guild. This was a program where I worked with the children of parents who were working towards their GED’s. I also cut all the young boys hair in my neighborhood whose parents could not afford it. Before I graduated from college, I began volunteering at the Windsor Academy.
My first teaching assignment was also at the Windsor Academy. I taught 5th grade for 3 years. I also worked as the safety patrol supervisor and coached our basketball team. My next teaching assignment was at Franklin Alternative Middle School. I taught there for three years also. There I taught 8th grade pre-algebra and science. I also was the field trip coordinator, volleyball coach, track & field coach and the boys and girls basketball coach. From that position I was promoted to Assistant Principal. I worked at Yorktown MS, Linmoor MS, Africentric Early College (K-12) and currently at Independence High School. This is my 6thyear as head principal at Independence.
I was recently appointed to the board of directors of the I Know I Can program. Also, I was nominated by a former student to Who’s who of American Teachers. It makes me feel great when, my students and peers express that I am making a difference in the lives of young people. I keep in touch with all my former students. I want to know that I did make a difference and that they are doing okay.
It is a true calling from God and a blessing to work with our young people. I don’t mind awaking to come and see our future prosper. Though it is challenging at times, it is also rewarding. I know that I was that same challenging student in my school days. That is why I have to give back. Young people can sense that I am here for them. Both young people and old can tell when you genuinely care about them.
Historian Rita Fuller-Yates sits with Ernest "Doc" West III for the 20Twenty200 Project
Hall grew up in northeast Ohio. He attended Brush high school and went on to play football for The Ohio State University. Roy graduated with a degree in business before moving on to the NFL. A former Ohio State and NFL Wide Receiver, Hall has built his career after football and his life around helping others. Over the last 12 years Roy has created a network of service through the Driven Foundation.
Roy Hall saw an opportunity to use his platform as a collegiate and professional athlete to help others. The Driven Foundation started with a single event – a football camp at his hometown high school in Lyndhurst, Ohio. He knew he wanted to serve and help young people. The natural tie for Roy in 2008 was to use football to reach young men and teach them not only fundamentals of the game, but also build courage, character, resilience, and perseverance.
Roy pulled in more than a dozen Buckeye and NFL teammates to host the camp.
This camp was the catalyst to building out a unique service organization focused on youth who may have nowhere to turn and no one to help.
Soon after he organized the first Driven Food Outreach event (an annual event) and to date, Driven has collected and distributed more than 800,000 pounds of food to 7400 families.
Today, Roy Hall, with the help of a small but dedicated team, have created more than a dozen programs that focus on alleviating gaps in the areas of hunger, education, and wellness and addressing key social and societal issues including drug use, bullying and working with incarcerated individuals. In addition to the annual Food Outreach, Roy’s development of community programs and efforts include:
Youth Mentorship, Youth Leadership, School Outreach and Assemblies, an Annual Back to School Event and Wellness Giveaway, Thanksgiving Dinner, Coats for Kids Drive, Holiday Toy Collection, Youth Football Camp, Suits Program, the Driven 500, a KNOW DRUGS program ans CLEAN.
Roy Hall has been repeatedly recognized for his accomplishments and continued commitment to the communities he serves. In 2018, he was named “40 Under 40” by Columbus Business First and has been featured in numerous press articles from small community papers to Reader’s Digest. Hall was a 5x Scholar Athlete award winner, a two-year Jefferson Award finalist and recipient of the United Way Color Me Excellent Award.
Historian Rita Fuller-Yates sits with Roy Hall to talk more about his life.
Cheryl Brooks Sullivan was elected as Franklin County Treasurer in 2016 and won a second term in 2020. She is the first African-American citizen of Ohio to be elected as a county treasurer in the state.
Treasurer Brooks Sullivan was born in Columbus and spent her early childhood in England while her father served as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen. After her family returned to Central Ohio, she attended Eastmoor and Marion-Franklin high schools, and Franklin University and The Ohio State University.
Since 1980, she has been involved in the management, administration, appraisal and sale of real estate in Central Ohio. She also is an avid community volunteer, public servant and veteran, having served in the Central Intelligence Division of the Army Security Agency. She completed her military assignment in 1977.
Treasurer Brooks Sullivan is involved with numerous organizations, including the Greater Columbus Arts Council, the Franklin County Land Bank, Homeport Ohio, and the National Coalition of 100 Black Women. She’s the proud mother of two and a grandmother of four. She enjoys working on home-improvement projects, collecting art and listening to live music.
Rita Fuller-Yates sits with Cheryl Books Sullivan to talk more about her life.
C Sunny Martin was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. He attended Wehrle High School on the far south end of Columbus.
Mr. Martin has always defined his primary life mission as making a positive difference to enhance, uplift, and economically empower communities towards entrepreneurship. Sunny has self published(64) sixty four books in a span of thirty years. Very few publishers can lay claim to hosting book release receptions at such notable venues as Staples Center in Los Angeles, Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio, the Apollo Theatre in Harlem, or at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.Mr. Martin is a Kentucky Colonel, and he is the founder and former CEO of Who’s Who Publishing Company. Throughout his twenty six years of leadership, he led the firm to expand its unique brand of Who’s Who directories out to twenty seven metro cities across America. His firm came to be recognized as the largest African American directory publisher in the U. S. In February 2009. Mr. Martin successfully sold the firm resulting in a multi million dollar deal transaction. Of particular note, Mr. Martin has also produced award wining television specials on diversity and inclusion, and has enjoyed consulting many Fortune 500 firms on matters of outreach and engagement for attracting minority consumers. Additionally, he has personally negotiated well over $40 million dollars in sponsorship underwriting for signature events reaching underserved audiences in numerous markets. Sunny has received much recognition throughout the publishing industry.He has also garnered recognition from (4) four U.S. Presidents with invitations to the White House on many occasions. President Barack Obama said of Mr. Martin, “I’d like to personally congratulate Sunny on all his work to showcase the positive achievements of African Americans nationwide.” Just a few years back, President Jimmy Carter held a special tribute reception in Mr. Martin‘s honor at the Carter Presidential Library in Atlanta, Georgia to acknowledge his outstanding achievements in publishing .
Historian Rita Fuller-Yates sits with C Sunny Martin to talk more about his life here in Columbus, Ohio.
“Lomax is the rare drummer who leaves you wanting more, leading his bandmates through a strikingly terse, brilliantly counterintuitive and ultimately joyous series of explorations.”- Lucid Culture
Dr. Mark Lomax, II, is a critically acclaimed composer, recording artist, drummer, activist, and educator. In one of the timeliest and unprecedented pieces of work of our history, Lomax released 400: An Afrikan Epic in January 2019. This magnum opus consists of a 12 album cycle, a curriculum, and a documentary that ambitiously tells the story of the Afrikan diaspora. Divided into thirds, the Epic and explores thousands of years of the history that is pre-colonial Afrika, the Ma’afa (400 years between 1619 and 2019), and Afro-futurism expressing a vision of what Blacks in America will heal toward in the next 400 years. Largely self funded, the 400 was supported by a residency at The Wexner Center for the Arts. Quoted in Columbus Monthly, Lane Czaplinski, Wexner performing arts director says, “Mark is an absolute experimentalist ... and this huge, deep project will look at the legacy of jazz from the past all the way to the future.” Lomax also calls 400: An Afrikan Epic, an opportunity to celebrate the resilience, brilliance, strength, genius, and creativity of a people who continue to endure while offering a transformative view of the future.
A highly sought-after lecturer, Lomax specializes in the socio-political, and spiritual aspects of African-American art music, race, and using the arts to build community. These ideas are documented in his TED Talk Activating The Transformative Power Of Trust, and his weekly COVID-inspired youtube show, Drumversations. Lomax adamantly declares that “there has never been a time in his life that music was not a part of me.” Heavily influenced by his father, a pastor, and mother, a composer of gospel music, Lomax was introduced to gospel and jazz at an early age. He continued his study of gospel music with Dr. Raymond Wise, founder of the Center for the Gospel Arts.
Lomax has toured with the Delfeayo Marsalis Sextet and worked with notable artists such as Clark Terry, Marlon Jordan, Azar Lawrence, Bennie Maupin, Billy Harper, Nicholas Payton, Ellis Marsalis, and Wessel Anderson, among others. Jazz Times says Lomax’s “forceful drumming would have made Elvin Jones proud.” He has also been a resident artist with the Cincinnati Symphony (2019), Denison University (2017), and has presented the 400 across the country at various colleges, universities, art and community organizations.
Dr. Lomax holds a Doctor of Music Arts degree in composition from The Ohio State University. His myriad experiences have allowed him to create a unique blend of styles in his music. Whether he’s interpreting the Negro Spiritual through jazz, arranging gospel music for a symphony orchestra, or performing his original works, his music is relevant, probing, and inspiring.
The man behind the music (Q&A) -
Virginia Rhodes Elliott, better known as Gini Elliott was raised in Columbus, Ohio. She was introduced to the art world in 1968 and has been in it ever since! For over 50 years!
She likes to call herself a portrait artist, although she enjoys oil and acrylic painting landscapes. She also likes sculpting and crafting. She says that she "breathes art daily", and tries to live in her passion every day.
When she creates a piece it has to move the viewer. Their reaction let's her know that she has done her job. God has blessed her hands with the gift or art, and she maintains "I must share it with His creation. Art...it's what I do".
Rita Fuller-Yates sits with artist Virginia Rhodes Elliott to talk more about her art and her life.
Byron L. Potts is a Columbus, Ohio Hilltop native. He attended West High school and went on to attend college at Bowling Green University.
Bryon Potts was admitted to practice law across the entire state of Ohio. He received his B.S. in Criminal Justice in 1978 from Bowling Green State University and his Juris Doctor in 1988 from the Law School of Capital University in Columbus.
Mr. Potts is here to assist all Ohio residents in matters of litigation with decades of experience representing clients in the courtroom. He is exceptionally knowledgeable in Ohio's state law in many areas of practice and looks forward to meeting you and zealously representing you in your case or handling your legal questions with the highest degree of professionalism and personal care.
Bryon Pott currently practices Law in Columbus, Ohio where his offices can be found on South High street in German Village.
Suzan Bradford Kounta was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. she is a dancer, instructor and choreographer of traditional West African dance. She also serves as the director of operations for the Columbus Lincoln Theater .
She was an Adjunct Faculty member at Antioch College and Ohio State, and guest artist at Denison. She serves on the board of Ohio P Dance, Ft. Hayes Advisory and the Near Eastside Roundtable, and is the first General Manager of the Lincoln Theater.
Suzan is President of Thiossane Institute and Artistic Director of its West African Dance Company, since its inception in 2000 with her beloved husband, Abdou Kounta.
"Artistically it is inspiring and easy to juggle home, life and art making. Columbus is affordable. Artists collaborate willingly, arts councils are supportive and therefore the arts thrive here. in Columbus."
Rita Fuller-Yates sits with Suzan Bradford Kounta to talk more about her life.
Bishop Timothy Joseph Clarke is a faithful pastor, anointed teacher, strategic thinker, and an articulate and prolific preacher. His love of God and people are expansive enough to reach the nations and microscopic enough to touch individuals on a personal level. He is the visionary leader and Senior Pastor of First Church of God in Columbus, OH, where under his dynamic and prophetic leadership, First Church has become a spiritual beacon at the local and national level.
Called to the ministry in January 1974, Bishop Clarke served as the Associate Minister at First Church of God, in his hometown of Far Rockaway, New York, under his mentor, the late Dr. James E. Cray. Bishop Clarke began his pastorate at York Avenue Church of God (Warren, OH) in November 1977 and faithfully served the congregation for four years. Bishop Clarke became the Senior Pastor of First Church of God in February 1982 after receiving the call in November 1981. His consecration to the office of Bishop transpired in September of 2001.
Bishop Clarke is the founder and Chief Prelate of the Berean Fellowship, an international assembly, partnering with pastors of small to mid-size churches and young pastors, and those new to pastoral ministry. Through the Berean Fellowship, Bishop Clarke equips pastors and leaders with the tools necessary to do effective ministry while offering a place of love, acceptance, and affirmation.
During the 37 years, Bishop Clarke has led First Church of God, he has served in Christian leadership positions at the local and national levels and has been privileged to sit on the board of organizations and associations that have benefitted both people and community. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including induction into the Morehouse College Board of Preachers.
Bishop Clarke’s standard of excellence is apparent in his commitment to not only ministry but also education. He holds a Certificate of Theology and Ministry (Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, NJ); Bachelor of Theology(Graduate Theological Foundation, Mishawaka, IN); Master of Ministry (Southern California School of Ministry, Los Angeles, CA); Doctorate of Divinity (Mid-America University, Oklahoma City, OK); Doctorate of Humanities(Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, OH); Doctorate of Divinity(Anderson University, Anderson IN).
Bishop Clarke ministers to our heart and encourages our soul through the numerous books he has published inclusive of his latest Celebrating the Family: Lessons from the Book of Ruth.
Bishop Clarke has maintained a fellowship with the National Association of the Church of God and has served in several leadership capacities including President of the National Inspirational Youth Convention, Chairman, and Vice-Chairman of the General Assembly; and President, Vice-President and Presiding Elder.
Bishop Clarke is currently the Chairman of the General Assembly and President of the Ministers Counsel which represents both the governing and functional boards of the Church of God International Assembly.
Bishop Clarke is the husband of Lady Clytemnestra Lawson Clarke, and a loving father and grandfather.
The 20Twenty200 team sits with Bishop Timothy J Clarke to talk more about his life growing up in New York and his life here in Columbus, Ohio.