Honest Conversations About Managing Up And Emotional Health Were At The Forefront Of She’s Got Next Brunch
Malaika Jones, CEO, BROWN GIRL Jane, speaks at NKSFB Sports Wealth Summit’s inaugural She’s Got Next brunch. The event was held at Miami’s The Bath Club. | Photo credit: Maxwell “J. Maxwell” Pierre Jr.

The colorful, warmly lit motif of the Collins Restaurant in Miami Beach’s The Bath Club served as the setting for the She’s Got Next brunch on February 25, part of the 2022 NKSFB Sports Wealth Summit.

Just as it was the inaugural brunch, it was also the first event held in the new restaurant—a glitzy yet comfortable setting for attendees to be inspired by a host of speakers brought in to motivate, encourage and inspire the wives, parents and caretakers of professional athletes.

Black women leaders of various industries spoke to the dozen women flown in from around the country in an interactive setting. Dr. N. Cindy Trimm, founder of Trimm International, opened the brunch with a pre-recorded video about focusing on creating new endings instead of overly concerning oneself with beginnings that have already passed.

ESSENCE deputy editor Cori Murray interviewed Kimberly Evans Paige about balancing her roles as chief marketing officer and executive vice president of BET Networks. Merlene Blair-Brown, clinical marriage and family therapist, offered sage advice to women via pre-recorded video, including “Sometimes we fight so hard to be right, we need to fight harder to be more loving” and “While he’s away, while he’s there, still manage yourself and do it effectively, because you know who you are.”

BET Networks chief marketing officer and executive VP Kimberly Evans Paige (left) and ESSENCE deputy editor Cori Murray | Photo credit: Maxwell “J. Maxwell” Pierre Jr.

Blair-Brown then hit the stage and the handful of men cleared the room before she led the women in a meditation that preceded a session in which the women opened up to her and each other in an emotional safe-space dialogue.

Tiffany Burns, partner in the Atlanta office of management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, had a one-on one with brand strategist June Haynes of June Haynes Luxury Retailing (JHLR) about business planning, during which they took questions from the audience that ranged from a woman discussing the psychological impact of her retired player husband seeking a new career to women finding the space to create their own business when their husbands retire.

Haynes spoke of her own experiences in her nearly three-decade career of helping to establish high-end fashion brands like Dolce Gabbana and Valentino, offering advice to women looking to start their own businesses, including the necessity of dealing with the less glamorous part of being a boss.

From left, June Haynes of June Haynes Luxury Retailing (JHLR) and Tiffany Burns, partner in the Atlanta office of management consulting firm McKinsey & Company. Photo credit: Maxwell “J. Maxwell” Pierre Jr.

“It doesn’t mean that, because you’re an executive, you shouldn’t be able to roll up your sleeves easily and get your feet wet,” Haynes said. “At the end of the day, you’re only as good as your people and as good as your business. I always wanted to be able to show my people that if it’s good enough for me to tell them to do something, I’m going to do it myself.”

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