50 Leaders of Tomorrow
Haynes, Karima A., Ebony
FROM corporate board rooms to church pulpits to government offices to movie sound stages, a new generation of young Black men and women is emerging to lead Black and White America into the world of tomorrow.
Despite a prevailing perception that young people are unconcerned about others and bent on indulging their every desire, the 50 leaders featured on these pages have struck a delicate balance between serving those less fortunate than themselves while pursuing their own interests.
In recent months, EBONY combed the country looking for outstanding Black Americans age 30 and younger who possess the leadership, intellect, creativity and character that will undoubtedly place them among the movers and shakers in the 21st century.
These extraordinary young leaders range in age from a 14-year-old author, who wrote a book when she was 12 years old, to a 24-year-old NASA aerospace engineer to a 30-year-old CEO. Although their backgrounds differ, their commitment to excellence is the same.
In this, the 50th anniversary of Johnson Publishing Co., the editors decided to reprise past honorees as well as introduce new leaders to our readers. This list, however, is by no means all-encompassing, but rather a representative sample of the abundance of exceptional young people who, we believe, will make headlines in the next 50 years.
Rev. Bernice A. King, 29, Atlanta, lawyer and minister; chair, national advisory
committee, National King Week College and University Student Conference
on Kingian Nonviolence; member, Active Ministers Engaged in Nurturance
(AMEN), a juvenile delinquents' ministry.
John Sinileton, 24, Los Angeles, writer and director of critically acclaimed film
Boyz N The Hood; youngest person and first Black director ever nominated
for an Academy Award; director, HBO drama series, The Champ; directing
new film Poetic Justice; graduate, University of Southern California Film
Latoya Hunter, 14. New York City, author, The Dairy of Latoya Hunter:
My First Year in Junior High (September 1992) a day-to-day account
of inner city life as seen through the eyes of a 12-year-old.
Jesse L. Jackson Jr. 27, Chicago, vice president at large, Operation
Push; youngest appointed member, Democratic National Commit-
tee; law student, University of Illionois; graduate, Chicago Theological
Malcolm Jamal Warner, 22, New York City, actor, NBC-TV comedy series
Here and Now and The Cosby Show; director, several episodes of The
Cosby Show and numerous music videos, author, Theo and Me.
Zna Portlock,28, Los Angeles, Counsel/labor relations, Fox Inc, board
member, Options House for homeless teenagers, trustee, Bethel
AME Church, board member, Black Attorneys Network
Cassandra D. Alston, 27, Houston, scheduling engineer, Exxon Oil Co.; co-founder, Houston chap -ter, National Society of Black En -gineers; founder, IMPACT, Minority Investment Club. Rep. David Armstrong, 26, Louisiana state representative, District 100), New Orleans; youngest per -son elected to state House of Representatives; 1992 Outstand -ing Young Man of America. Dwayne R Ashley, 25, Philadelphia, area director, United Negro Col -lege Fund; past campaign super -visor, United Way of the Texas Gulf; past Lyndon B. Johnson in -tern, U.S. Supreme Court. A. Scott Bolden, 30, Washington, D.C., associate lawyer, Reed Smith Shaw & McClay; member, NAACP Legal Outreach Inc.; board member, American Lung Association, Washington, D.C. Dwayne Drown, 30, Indianapolis, clerk of Indiana Supreme and Appellate courts; first Black elected to statewide office in In -diana; former staff attorney, Fed -eral Reserve System. Deborah Carter, 30, Atlanta, owner, computer consulting firm; past manager, office systems adminis -tration, IBM Corp. …