By Safa Gangat & Damion Burgess
This February, in recognition of Black History Month, VIBE 105 celebrates 10 Successful Black Canadians who have made it big it different walks of life.
1. Steven Ambrose
(Founder of CBA – Canadian Basketball Academy)
Steven founded the charitable CBA in 2010 to provide at-risk youth and children with education and and a stimulating environment to play sports, while also upholding a “no child turned away for financial reasons” policy. He has managed to support 1,300 children annually and has raised close to $1 million in donations since 2010. Coming out strong from his own troubled situation, Ambrose has strived to be have a positive impact on youth through the CBA as well as provide those that are underprivileged with scholarships to attend post-secondary institutions through his Bruiser’s Foundation. He has successfully used his experience as an officer in the Canadian Armed Forces and his Level 3 National Coaching Certificate to teach and motivate youth that come his way. Find out more about Steven here.
2. Viola Desmond
(Canadian Black Nova Scotian Businesswoman)
Viola Desmond, a black Canadian business woman from Nova Scotia, born in 1914, had worked towards a career as a beautician that she turned into her own business and mentored young black women through her Desmond School of Beauty and Culture. After 1946, Desmond’s life events had come to recognition after she courageously and persistently fought for herself, having a legal case against her, which was known to be based off racial discrimination. Desmond had refused to be segregated at the Roseland theatre for a film leading to her arrest called on by the manager of the venue and had to go through a trial with no one side except her fellow communities members. Desmond’s battle sparked debate and change within the Nova Scotian community to end racial discrimination as well as segregation. She has since been commemorated in many ways, one of the most recent being the appearance of her face on the $10 Canadian banknotes being released in 2018. Find out more about Viola here.
3. Jason Allen John
With over 13 years of experience in banking and team building, Jason Allen John has maintained a strong career at BMO and CIBC. He has extended plethora of knowledge and passion to clients and team and managed to optimally utilize what he has learn over the years of his career. As mortgage agent with over 8 years of experience of mortgage advising, John works hard to inform and build the confidence of potential homeowners and flourished in his financial profession. Featured in season 10 and 11 of HGTV’s Income Properties, John has proved his excellence in is field while having over $200 million in mortgages lent out! Find out more about Jason here.
4. Jamal Ward
(Owner Of Flash Forward Media Group)
Torontonian Jamal Ward founded and built the Flash Forward Media Group in 2013 making his dream of delivering a unique and quality product come true in various multimedia disciplines. With having a flair for picking up on upcoming opportunities and using them to his advantage, Ward has continued to grow his love for the media production industry desiring to learn more. Ward is the director of photography at his company with over 10 years of media production experience but although he specializes in cinematography and motion graphics, he is still a well experienced photographer. Find out more about Jamal here.
5. Cedric Carter
(CEO + Head Trainer of Galaxy Training)
Cedric Carter, CEO and head trainer at Galaxy Training in Pickering founded his fitness and basket focused training company in 2008 and has been a fitness professional since. Carter has and is still currently working with pro basketball players as well athletes on various levels of fitness. A NCCP certified coach and CPTN certified personal trainer, Carter is a Health Sciences graduate from Durham College. However, Carter did not always find it easy to be as fit and disciplined as he is today and used to be teased at a young age about his weight but as he grew older, his passion for basketball pushed him into a healthier lifestyle and highlighted his love for training others. Currently a basketball coach for Nike+ in Canada, Carter has continued to mentor, inspire, and improve the skills and fitness of those who come to him. Find out more about Cedric here.