Dining with Divas

CPR4455_ApolloDivas_websitegraphic290x440I was invited to the annual lunch at the Apollo theater called Dining with Divas  There were many things about the event that just blew me away because it confirmed that New York City might be a small town but it is also a huge city. 

The room was filled with successful women from one end of the city to the other.  Each have made their own impact in NYC. I can honestly say that there were maybe two people in the room that I knew.  It was primarily an African American community celebrating the Apollo theater and the outreach that they have done for the community. 

Jonelle Procope, who has taken the lead of the Apollo board for the last 10 years has transformed the community.  She rebuilt the board, she rebuilt the structure, she created community outreach, she started evening events such as amateur night and she created TV shows promoting music that use the Apollo as the back drop for those performances.  An incredible woman who gets shit done.  Her husband gave a speech about her that did not leave a dry eye in the house. 

The events theme was about mentorship. What was the most impressive Carla Harris who is literally on ever top list in the country. She spoke about what it mean to be a mentor, an advisor and a sponsor and how you speak to each one.  She spoke about how important our journey is as woman to not make it all about us but remember it is important that we make our mark to open the door for women coming behind us.  I could not agree more. 

Here is what she said.  Advisors are people who give you advice about your business, your life or whatever it is.  They advise you and sometimes the best advisers are your peers.  Mentors are people who help you navigate your path by being honest about everything.  Giving advice that is sometimes difficult to hear and sometimes rewarding to hear.  A sponsor is someone who you only talk to about positive things because they are the people who are going to be your advocate. 

Really an inspiring day hearing women talk about other women role models and trust me there were some serious role models in that room who have broken every glass ceiling they have ever seen. 

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Comments (Archived):

  1. rich caccappolo

    very cool event – glad you were there and thanks for telling us about it. No doubt, Jonelle Procope is a force. What she has done to revitalize the Apollo theater is worthy of both acclaim and case study creation, as there are lessons and best practices that should be shared. Like his wife and the Apollo, her husband, Fred Terrell, is a great NYC asset, too – they make quite a couple. I’ve gotten to know Fred through Coro – we’ve been on the Coro NYC Board together for 9 years – his involvement goes way back, as he was Coro Foundation Fellow out of LA soon after graduating from college. I have always been impressed by his insight and determination. Good people for you to know!

    1. Gotham Gal

      They were amazing.

  2. Rhea Galsim


  3. Brenda Coffee

    Mentors & advisors are Godsends. They’re selfless role models who lead the way for those they take under their wing. You, your blog, the women run businesses you invest in and advise, and the Women’s Entrepreneur Festival, are great examples of women extending a hand to pull other women up the ladder. Thank you for the advice you gave me & for helping all of us.Brenda