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Imagine This...

Hi, my name is Erica - fully Erica Savage Wilson. I was born and baptized as a Savage and I continue to carry the life as such quite proudly. For me, life is a collection of images mirrored, of which are juxtaposed or complemented by words. Images aid in shaping perceptions, experiences and cultures and as a Black girl my images were curated by my family; Glenn-Savage respectively. The power and pride of who I was, was reinforced through the lens of many impressionable women. My late grandmother, Gussie Hill Glenn, a 1960’s forerunner and Black librarian in then segregated Albany, Georgia. My mother, Felicia Glenn Churchwell, a warrior queen who began her educational career as a beloved kindergarten teacher at the former Isabella Elementary to present day leader within collegiate halls. The Black Girl Magic was nurtured and echoed by my sisters and affirmation circle, Kimberly Grace Jones and Jo’el DuBois Churchwell and beloved aunts who served their communities as nurses, seamstresses, educators and administrators. The continuum of impact as a Savage began with the aura of a woman who embodied a sweetness not yet to be replicated, my late grandmother Tommie Savage. She filled my childhood with the purest sense of freedom and genuine love that every being should have the pleasure of experiencing. My aunts were the culmination and extension of that beauty - women of strength and infectious laughter. And yet, I still felt an undeniable sting. Considering my Blackness and its beauty, I could not understand what withheld it from being reflected in the community of which I consumed as food from my early years to adulthood -media. And more specifically, daily Black news anchors and political commentators. This was the era of Brokaw, of whom I became a student and loyalist of The Nightly News, Today Show and Meet The Press. The lack of my reflection gave pause to my mother’s vision for my future as voice of political and social commentary. The truth of the matter was that very few Black Women occupied that space for my adolescent soul save Carole Simpson, Gwen Ifill, Jacque Reid and Oprah Winfrey and imagery is important for the imagination - ask Dove.

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