Ray Harrell, a Chicago native, has worked in Human Resources for more than 15 years. He is the author of “101 Tips For Career Success”, a book designed to help people of color overcome obstacles in the hiring process. In his spare time, he enjoys Chicago's many street festivals, film festivals, theater, and travel.
Gil Shannon Jr
Gil Shannon Jr, a Chicago area native, has been a public servant throughout his professional career. His love for the arts was nurtured at an early age by participating in bands and ensembles as a saxophonist and singing tenor in various choirs. His love continues to be nourished through his friendships with various artisans who participate in all forms of art. If not traveling through the states or abroad, you can find him supporting events held by local organizations, dining with friends, or at the gym.
Tim’m T. West, is an educator, performance artist, author, hip hop recording artist, poet, activist and youth advocate. He has been featured in many documentaries about hip hop culture. In addition to his books, he is widely anthologized, and has produced nine hip hop albums. West has been interviewed by an array of media outlets from Newsweek to the New York Times.
Christopher Wimbley has been a volunteer of Black Alphabet since 2017 and also has volunteered with various Organizations since 2006. Chris feels that giving back to the community is important because it helps promote love and care for one another. Chris enjoys walks on the beach and hot wings. Chris thanks the Black Alphabet board for this wonderful opportunity!
Shiane Wilcoxen, a Chicago native is a Mother, Wife, Out Lesbian, Private Chef and Event Planner with over 14 years of culinary and hospitality expertise. She is the owner of Q-Tea-Pie and founder of Team 101 Chicago LGBTQIA+ youth organization. In her spare time she teaches cake decorating and culinary techinques in the community, as well as writing short stories and poetry that have been featured in multiple collections. She is in the process of opening a teaching bed & breakfast and cafe that will employ at-risk youth and focus on reintroducing and reimagining home economics and family and consumer sciences.
African American leader in the discussion of systemic effects on young, black, gay, men with 10+ years of experience leading mission based work for this population. From ensuring health equity to destroying structural causes of harm to his community, Noel brings an unapologetic dedication to enhancing the future for young, men of color. As an entrepreneur, activist, advocate, and intervention developer, Noel works today so that outcomes for his community will be better tomorrow.