Women's Empowerment has been a major event in Raleigh for the last 18 years. Sponsored by Radio One, the leading African-American Radio Company including R&B, Hip-Hop, and Gospel radio stations. The target audience for the annual event is black women, and depending on who the keynote speaker is, the age range can be young or old. Past keynoters have been Patti LaBelle, Mary J. Blige, Tyra Banks, and Steve Harvey.
The keynote speaker this year was Bishop T.D. Jakes. His message, as I understand it, is directed to women who have self-esteem issues, at work, relationships, marriage. His message is always uplifting and inspiring. The conference at the PNC Arena was a sellout. Women of all ages came, young, old, black, white, red, and yellow, ambulatory and infirm.
The day was filled with gospel music by top recording artists, other speakers (Wendy Williams), a panel of male celebrities from radio and televsion who talked about relationships.
The evening was filled out with recording stars, Fantasia, Eryka Badu, and saving the best for last, Charlie Wilson.
In between sessions, the women shopped. They bought our books, but we had to fight off the crowd from the adjoining booth where they brought a whole store from Durham. They sold jewelry, handbags, t-shirts, and SHOES.
The subtitle of this blog is "...never in my lifetime becomes reality." So this was one for the bucket list, and I don't have to do it again. Twelve solid hours of hawking books is a bit much for an old broad.
Charlie Wilson closed out the show.