Brenda Sykes(Old School Edition)

Brenda Sykes

Brenda Sykes was born on June 25,1948 in Shreveport, Louisiana. The daughter of a postal worker, Brenda Sykes seemed bound for an academic career when, at 19, she was made a Teaching Assistant in Black History in the UCLA High Potential Program. One year later, Brenda showed up as a contestant on TV’s The Dating Game. Her appearance not only won her an all-expenses-paid trip to New Zealand, but also caught the eyes of several Hollywood talent agents. In 1970, Sykes was personally selected by prestigious film director William Wyler to play a good featured role in The Liberation of L.B. Jones. After an excellent start, she was consigned to the standardized roles usually played by African American ingenues in the 1970s, showing up in such exploitational fare as The Drum and Cleopatra Jones. Brenda Sykes’ series-TV work has included Ozzie’s Girls (1973) and Executive Suite (1976).

Bern Nadette Stanis(Old School Edition)

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Bern Nadette Stanis was born on December 22,1953. She grew up in the borough of Brooklyn, New York in a working class neighborhood.

As anyone could tell from her role as Thelma Evans, Stanis is also talented dancer as well as an actress. Who can ever forget that dance she did in the wine-colored bodysuit to the tune of Native New Yorker?

She was trained and graduated from the prestigious Julliard School, and she was one of many alumni who went on to make her alma mater proud, as well as prove its strength.

The pinnacle of Bern Nadette Stanis’ career was no doubt her stint on Good Times.

Throughout her time as Thelma Evans, Stanis showed the world that a kid from the ghetto had hopes, and dreams just like anybody else.

Bern Nadette also took her role as a role model a step further by also demonstrating that a girl from the ghetto could have class and values, the sort of things that money simply cannot buy.

Her character dealt with such issues as teenage sex, teen pregnancy, underage drinking, and everyday teenage issues, and she handled each situation with grace and class.

After the show ended in 1979, She mostly retired from the limelight, but she made appearances on shows like The Cosby Show, The Love Boat, The Parent ‘Hood, and the What’s Happening revival series, What’s Happening Now.

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Most people do not know that Bern Nadette Stanis was actually 20 years old when Good Times premiered, and she was almost 26 when it ended; she still maintains her youthful appearance even today as she approaches 60 years of age.

She has authored a book called Bern Nadette Stanis Situations 101, it was published in 2006 and it is much like a collection of “Dear Abby” letters, but answered instead by our Dear Bern Nadette.

She made a recent television appearance in 2010 on an episode of the TV One series that showcases black actors from the 1970s, Way Black When.

Most recently, she sat down on the couch with the women of The View (September 2011)and she discussed her career and upcoming projects.

Bern Nadette Stanis has already left her mark on Television History and Black History, and hopefully, there is a lot more to come from this beautiful and talented black actress.

Judy Pace (Old School Edition)

Judy Pace

Actress Judy Pace Flood was born Judy Pace on June 15, 1942, in Los Angeles, California. Attending Marvin Avenue Elementary School, and Louis Pastuer Junior High School, Pace graduated from Dorsey High School in 1960. Trained in modeling by her sister, Betty, Pace auditioned for the Ebony Fashion Fair and became the youngest model for the show’s 1961 to 1962 national tour.

In 1963 Pace auditioned for Columbia Pictures and was cast in William Castle’s horror film The Candyweb. Pace played a regular role in the 1969 season of Peyton Place and went on to appear in many other shows, including Batman, Bewitched, The Flying Nun, I Spy, The Young Lawyers, The Mod Squad, That’s My Mama, Sanford and Son, What’s Happening?, Good Times, and Sucker Free City.. Cast in Billy Wilder’s The Fortune Cookie in 1966, Pace also played roles in the movies Three in the Attic, The Thomas Crown Affair, and the acclaimed TV movie Brian’s Song. In 1970, Pace won acclaim for her role as Iris in the Ossie Davis directed Cotton Comes to Harlem; in 1973, she played Adelaide in a Las Vegas production of Guys and Dolls.

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Pace married Ironsides actor Don Mitchell in 1972 and took time out for civic duties and to raise her two children during the 1980s. Divorced from Mitchell in 1986, Pace then married baseball’s Curt Flood. Since Flood’s death in 1997, Pace acted as a major spokesperson for his role in establishing free agency in professional sports. Pace founded the Kwanzaa Foundation with Nichelle Nichols.

Divine Feminine Principle: How Black Women can become Queens (Part 1 of 5)

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I love the idea of Sistahs being Queen. However, I must put emphasis on the word idea.  The problem that arises is we seem to have many misconceptions about the word, or title, Queen.  We must realize that in order to be respected as a “Queen” verses merely throwing the word around we must enter a regal state of mind.  Queens are: rulers, decision makers, calculated, poised, graceful, leaders, examples, the standard, intelligent, and persuasive.  Ladies it is not enough to say we are queens…that is lifestyle.  The power and strength of the title has a lot to do with our feminine grace.  We have been deceived to believe grace and class are a weak woman’s commodity. No Ma’am…may I suggest that they are our greatest assets.

We will NEVER beat a man at being a man.  No matter what the books say, No diss to Steve Harvey, but we must think like queens and act accordingly.  Men don’t need to be strong armed…they need to SEE a better way.  A true Queen can affect the hearts of men in her calculated presentation, understanding of self-worth and her standard…which she lives.  When a woman is the walking embodiment of power under control she doesn’t have to curse out a soul.  Her very presence will command the respect and audience she requires.

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You see ladies we need not think like a man, because we cannot function as one and get his results.  Many sistahs have the best intention, and heart…but lose ground one they open their mouths and lose composure.  Let’s be honest here…how we engage a matter will determine our outcome.  We don’t like to be told this because it means there is no excuse for irrational behavior.

It’s time to actually walk in our Queendom.  Sistahs it is leadership at its finest.  Our lives teach inspire young queens to come, and build the expectation of young kings. Our regal nature cause young men to think “I have to marry a woman like her when I go up”.  We have it in us to be the ultimate chess piece…the most powerful piece on the board.  However, this cannot…and will not happen as long as we allow our hurt, past and circumstance to become the excuse for subpar behavior and a non-existent standard.

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The idea that we don’t have control over our emotional state to the point we hurt ourselves, each other, our men, and children is scary.  No everything is NOT our fault…however we are the mothers of the community…the mothers of a nation so we must trust in our ability.  Yes we have been hurt, abused, neglected and mistreated.  Yet, we have the power and strength to enact a change that will live beyond our generation.

Let’s stand together and become true Queens in title, and right. When we own our Queendom as our lifestyle our men will guard us, and our children will bless us.  Sistahs I believe in you. The change begins with the bearer of life…you.

Article by Christian Starr