As Karen Alexander approached her 40th birthday, she took a risk and “stepped out on faith,” mortgaging her house, spending her savings and investments to launch the Auntie Karen Foundation. Her love of arts inspired her to leave her position with Xerox Corp. to start the foundation, whose mission is to “empower, enlighten and educate through the arts.” Her creations include a young entrepreneur’s conference to foster economic empowerment, a concert series for young people and an online children’s series, carried on Knowitall.org. — Auntie Karen’s Place.She is also the creator of 14 original characters and the author of two books.
Her creations and events include Auntie Karen’s Young Entrepreneur’s Conference, Gordon’s Garden, Olivia the Octopus, Auntie Karen’s “Legends of” Concert Series, and Auntie Karen’s Black History Museum Celebration. It is Alexander’s love for the arts that inspired her to leave her corporate position with Xerox Corporation to offer something different. And the programs offered by the Auntie Karen Foundation do that. Her Annual Youth Entrepreneur’s Conference is held on the campus of Benedict College for ages 7 to 22 who come from across the region to learn how to foster economic empowerment.
A Brooklyn, New York native, Curtis is a graduate of the New York School of Announcing and Speech and Columbia, S.C.’s Benedict College where he earned degrees in broadcasting and mass communications. Curtis is also a veteran soldier having served in the U.S. Army as a nuclear, biological, chemical warfare specialist.
Everyone always jokes about his “million jobs” but that is the reason that Curtis Wilson is a Black History Maker of South Carolina! He is a Media Guru…From being an on-air personality on The Big DM for over 20 years, News Anchor for ABC Columbia, the voice of the Southeastern Conference (SEC) championship series for SEC basketball and baseball games, the voice of Ridgeview High School Blazer Football and “the official voice” of Benedict College Tiger football and basketball.
We are so proud of all of his accomplishments and can’t wait to see what’s next!!!
Viola Davis was born on her grandmother’s farm in St. Matthews, South Carolina and attended Central Falls High School, where she developed a love of acting. She studied theater at Rhode Island College, and also attended the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City.
As of 2018, she is one of three women who have won both the Best Supporting Actress Oscar (hers being for Fences (2016)) and the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Emmy (hers being for How to Get Away with Murder (2014)).
James Brown is known as the “Godfather of Soul” and the “hardest working man in show business.” Although born in Barnwell County on May 3, 1933, Brown has called Beech Island home for many years. In a career that spans four decades, Brown has had 98 Top 40 Billboard R&B singles, 17 making it to number one. He has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has received a Grammy Life Achievement Award.