Qaadir' Naqib Muhammad
Qaadir’ Naqib is the founder of “Fight 4 Life” NO EXCUSES, a non-profit organization that was inspired through his journey of losing weight. He became known as The Wellness Preacher. He has organized numerous events and fundraisers in cities from Pasadena, California to Phoenix, Az. In 2015, He was inspired to send a group of youth from his hometown to Washington D.C for the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March. Qaadir', who co-created J.O.E 626, grew up in a single parent home in a neighborhood known for gang violence and drugs. He was able to break free from the chains of his environment and started to mentor young males with a goal of preventing them from going down the wrong path in life. In the fall of 2016, he launched a 12 week manhood training course for young men from ages 8-18.
Bilal Munir Rahim
Bilal Munir Rahim also known by his stage name Martel Cartel is Arizona native born and partially raised. Bilal spent his junior high and high school years in San Diego, CA where he learned the hard knocks of life and developed a love for hip hop. After high school, Bilal returned to Phoenix to pursue a music career and to be with family. Bilal started GreenLight-THC music & publishing in 2012 with the intent of giving independent artists the opportunity to own their publishing rights and get paid from their music. In 2014, he took a break from music to create “Our Black Fathers Committee LLC,” a ‘fathers mentoring fathers’ organization based on "building stronger communities; one father at a time". Bilal still makes music and helps other artists pursue their dreams, yet he still finds time to stay active locally and nationally in issues regarding the disenfranchised. Our Black Fathers Committee serves as a platform for his new journey of activism tackling specific issues such as police brutality, gang violence, fatherhood support and mentoring programs for young boys.
James Sesay, Jr.
James Sesay Jr, a loving husband of a 13 year marriage and father of four, was born in Washington D.C. and raised in Atlanta, GA. He is the only son of two immigrants from Sierra Leone and is the first generation to be born in the U.S.. James is a former Sergeant of the United States Marine Corps. While stationed in Yuma, he served for five years as the Training Non-Commission Officer of the Aircraft Firefighting Division. James went on to study psychology and information technology at Arizona State University. James is currently a marketing consultant and owner of a landscaping and painting company. He has over 30 years experience in martial arts; trained in TangSoo Do, Judo, Brazilian Jiujitsu, and HwaRang Do and in boxing. Currently, James is an instructor of Gungfu specializing in Kuntao and Penchak Silat. He states, "Being able to train and help mentor the young men of the S.O.N.S Program has been one of my greatest honors." He looks forward to continue empowering young men with confidence, perseverance, discipline and self defense.
Blueprint for Womanhood
Angelica Lindsey-Ali is a wife, proud homebirthing mother of 4, and a lifelong lover of African culture. A native of Detroit, Angelica studied African and African American Studies at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. She has spent the last 19 years working both locally and internationally in the fields of education, public health, refugee rights, and social work, endeavoring to help end systematic inequities inflicting Black people across the Diaspora. She is a certified sexual health educator and the lead consultant for Beautiful Abyss, an online information-sharing portal for Black women’s health and wellness. After returning from a 5 year stint in the Middle East and West Africa, Angelica has been conducting program supervision and development, as well as capacity building for organizations who have established educational and public health initiatives within the African American community. Angelica is the co-founder and Vice President of Endé Education, an American based educational management company operating branches in Phoenix, AZ and Accra, Ghana.
In addition to her professional work, Angelica is a professional dancer and choreographer specializing in the dances of West Africa. She instructs Rites participants on body awareness, sacred movement, and the cultural history, meaning and technique of dances from Ghana, Mali, Senegal, and Guinea.