Us Concepts Stands Up

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Photo: (L to R) Brian Murphy, CEO of US Concepts, Dr. Ben Chavis, NAACP hero and UN Goodwill Ambassador, Russell Simmons, Founder & CEO of RUSH Communications, Gary Foster, Founder of Upliftment Jamaica and VP of RUSH Communications,  Nadja Bellan-White, EVP of Urban Concepts
Photo Courtesy of Winning Strategies & Associates

On Tuesday, November 21st, Upliftment Jamaica, an initiative to build awareness, education and inspiration in Jamaica, was awarded a $25,000 donation by US Concepts. To celebrate the award, US Concepts presented an Upliftment Jamaica Pre-Gala cocktail reception at the trendy Luxe Lounge in Chelsea. The star-studded event, sponsored by Red Stripe, Maroons and VP Records, brought together leading brands, cultural media and political influences from the world of music, television, film, and fashion in celebration of the $25,000 donation, which will be used to provide computers and educational programs for people in need in Jamaica.

Gary Foster, VP of Rush Communications, which includes Phat Farm, Def Poetry Jam and other subsidiaries, founded Upliftment Jamaica for the purpose of empowering people who are in need in Jamaica to help themselves. 

Urban Concepts operates under the ideal that it is a human responsibility for everyone to help each other.  During her presentation, Nadja Bellan-White, EVP of Urban Concepts stated, “You have a responsibility.  Wherever you are, you can do something to help make a difference in Jamaica.�

Urban Concepts, Gary Foster, and 107.5/WBLS’ Dahved Levy were hosts for the evening.  VP Records’ Reggae sensation, Wayne Wonder and VP Records’ Gypyian, who was magnificent opening for Wayne Wonder, kept the crowd live and moving.  Pon the wheels of steel was Idris Elba a.k.a. DJ Big Driis of HBO’s The Wire , and DJ Gringo. Complimentary cocktails were provided courtesy of Red Stripe.  It was a night of celebration, vibing, delicious food and drinks and people just having a wonderful time.

Presenting the $25,000 award to Upliftment Jamaica was Nadja Bellan-White, EVP of Urban Concepts, Gary Foster (with the paper), Brian Murphy, CEO of US Concepts, Dr. Ben Chavis, NAACP hero and UN Goodwill Ambassador, Randy Chin of VP Records, Charlie Tarzian, CEO of CoActive Marketing Group.

Other celebrities who came out to support Upliftment Jamaica included Russell Simmons, Leon, Dana Dane, Craig Mack, Ghost Face from the Wu Tang Clan, Teddy Ted & The Awesome 2, DeVon Harris, Dr. Ben, Nesse from Famous Faces, LLC and LJ Smith from On Smash Radio 101.5 FM, and more.

There was something mystical about Russell Simmons that night.  It was the essence of pure happiness and a sense of great satisfaction and accomplishment.  Simmons said it all with his eyes and with his brilliant smile which permeated the room -- “I'm overjoyed and grateful to be in a position to help my people.�

To learn more about Upliftment Jamaica, logon to

For more info on US Concepts and Urban Concepts, logon to

For info on VP Records, logon to

Brenda Jeanne Wyche, Advocate for Solutions and Results, is Managing Editor for The Black Star News and Harlem Business News and CEO of Winning Strategies & Associates, a business development consultancy in New York City.  If you have a solution, contact .  Maybe we’ll talk.

To subscribe to or advertise in New York’s leading Pan African weekly investigative newspaper, please call (212) 481-7745 or send a note to
“Speaking Truth To Empower.� 

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