A Message From The Creator

Give Me The Wind

I am at my best with the wind in my face,
When overcoming the challenge, with pace.
The pace that requires more effort, more strength.
But once gained momentum, endures with great length.

It’s easy to sit back, placid and calm
Comfort is only a relative balm.
It seems an advantage, better than strife
But is dulled by stagnation, stifling life.

Progress needs movement, energy, drive,
No chance for improvement if you do not strive.
Nothing’s for nothing: cause and effect.
That which you work for, you’ve more chance to get.

So give me the wind, let it blow in my face,
The more I confront, the more strength I’ll embrace.
Steps are not mounted, nor challenge o’ercome.
Without certain courage or effort be done.

by Craig Nicholson

Inspirational Woman Of The Day

Shirin Ebadi at a media forum in Germany this month

Homa Khaleeli

The Guardian, March 7, 2011

Article History

Shirin Ebadi

Iran’s first female judge, founder of the Human Rights Defenders Centre and the first Muslim woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace prize

Shirin Ebadi became Iran‘s first female judge when she was only 23. Yet this is perhaps the least remarkable aspect of a career that saw her become the first Iranian and first Muslim woman to be awarded the Nobel peace prize. Despite initially supporting the Iranian revolution, like many Iranians, Ebadi soon became its scourge. Although described as “the worst nightmare of Iran’s hardline clerics”, her fight for human rights, particularly those for women, is not anti-religion. “I am against patriarchy, not Islam,” she says.

Demoted to a secretary in her own court by the regime, which considered women unsuitable to be judges, she set up her own pro bono law practice to focus on injustices in the legal system, acting for political dissidents and on child-abuse cases. One such case involved the rape and murder of 11-year-old Leila Fathi by three men. The girl’s parents were unable to bring the men to justice as the cost of executing the male perpetrators was twice the compensation owed for the death of a girl.

Despite being put on a death list by the regime, her brother-in-law being executed and enduring solitary confinement, Ebadi became the country’s most high-profile human rights activist, founding the Human Rights Defenders Centre and helping to found the One Million Signatures Campaign. This grassroots campaign collected 1m signatures from women in support of changing discriminatory laws. The campaign has won numerous international prizes (including the 2009 Reach All Women in War Anna Politkovskaya award), but its members have also been harassed and even jailed.

In her memoir, Iran Awakening, she wrote, “It is not religion that binds women, but the selective dictates of those who wish them cloistered. That belief, along with the conviction that change in Iran must come peacefully and from within, has underpinned my work.”In 2009, the regime confiscated Ebadi’s Nobel medal – given in acknowledgement of her efforts to promote human rights (the rights of women and children in particular) – froze her bank accounts and arrested her sister, and she was forced into exile. Aged 63, she continues to write and lecture on human rights from the UK.

Inspiration Of An Award Winner

Beautiful and Talented

Halle Berry ( born August 14, 1966) is an American actress and a former fashion model. Berry received an EmmyGolden GlobeSAG, and an NAACP Image Award for Introducing Dorothy Dandridge and won an Academy Award for Best Actress and was nominated for a BAFTA Award in 2001 for her performance in Monster’s Ball, becoming the first and, as of 2012, only woman of African American descent to have won the award for Best Actress. She is one of the most highly paid actresses in Hollywood and also a Revlon spokeswoman. She has been involved in the production side of several of the films in which she performed.

Before becoming an actress, Berry entered several beauty contests, finishing as the 1st runner-up in the Miss USA Pageant (1986), and coming in 6th place in the Miss World Pageant in 1986. She made her film debut with a small role in 1991’s Jungle Fever. This led to starring roles in The Flintstones(1994), Bulworth (1998), X-Men (2000) and its sequels, and as Bond Girl Jinx in Die Another Day (2002). She also won the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress in 2005 for Catwoman and accepted the award in person—one of the few performers to do so

Local Inspiration

Lezli Baskerville


by Diverse Staff , March 30, 2012

Lezli Baskerville

In 2004, civil rights attorney Lezli Baskerville was appointed president and CEO of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO). As NAFEO’s fifth president, Baskerville has been its first female CEO of the national membership association of the nation’s 105 historically Black colleges and universities and 50 predominantly Black institutions. Prior to her selection, she had served as NAFEO’s pro bono outside counsel for 20 years, executive director of the National Black Leadership Roundtable, appellate counsel at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and vice president of the College Board. Among Baskerville’s achievements while at NAFEO are her development of a national strategy that increased by nearly $1 billion federal funding for HBCUs and PBIs, and her engagement of 25,000 HBCU and PBI students in a letter-writing campaign that thwarted congressional efforts to eviscerate funding for HBCUs and MSIs.   Baskerville received her bachelor’s degree from Douglass College in New Jersey and a law degree from Howard University.

Women In The News

Mary winston

Family Dollar Names Mary A. Winston Chief Financial Officer

MATTHEWS, N.C.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Family Dollar Stores, Inc. (NYSE: FDO) today announced that it has named Mary A. Winston to the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Ms. Winston will report to Howard R. Levine, Chairman and CEO, and will have executive responsibility for Family Dollar’s financial operations, includingaccounting, treasury, tax, financial planning, investor relations, and internal audit.

“With more than 25 years of financial management and leadership experience, Mary is an excellent addition to our team,” said Howard R. Levine, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Her extensive financial experience, combined with her strong communication and analytical skills, make her a great choice to help us execute against our strategic plan to expand our market share and drive greater financial returns.”

In conjunction with this change, Kenneth T. Smith, former Senior Vice President – Chief Financial Officer, expects to leave the Company, serving in a transition role as Senior Vice President – Finance until October 2012.

“Throughout his 22-year tenure with the Company, Ken has made significant contributions to Family Dollar in a variety of financial and operational areas,” continued Howard Levine. “Under his leadership, Family Dollar has strengthened its financial position and delivered strong returns to shareholders. I sincerely thank him for his service to Family Dollar and appreciate that we will continue to benefit from his expertise during the transition.”

Prior to joining Family Dollar, Ms. Winston served for four years as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Giant Eagle, Inc., a $9 billion, privately held grocery chain which operates supermarket and fuel/convenience stores. She also previously served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Scholastic Corporation, a children’s publishing and media company; as Vice President, Treasurer and then Controller of Visteon Corporation, an automotive parts supplier; and as Vice President, Global Financial Operations, of Pfizer Inc., a global pharmaceutical company.

Ms. Winston earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and Management Information Systems from the University of Wisconsin and a Masters of Business Administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. She is a certified public accountant. Ms. Winston also serves on the board of directors for Plexus Corporation (NASDAQ: PLXS) and Dover Corporation (NYSE: DOV). She serves as Chair of the Audit Committee for Dover Corporation.

About Family Dollar Stores, Inc.

For more than 50 years, Family Dollar has been providing value and convenience to customers in easy-to-shop neighborhood locations. Family Dollar’s mix of name brands, and quality, private brand merchandise, appeals to shoppers in more than 7,100 stores in rural and urban settings across 44 states. Helping families save on the items they need with everyday low prices creates a strong bond with customers who refer to their neighborhood store as “my Family Dollar.” Headquartered in Matthews, North Carolina, just outside of Charlotte, Family Dollar is a Fortune 300, publicly held company with common stock traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol FDO. For more information, please visitwww.familydollar.com.



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