Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Dr. Boyce Watkins Spotlight: From Harlem to Harvard – Giselle Marcus Sets the Standard

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

I was impressed with Gisele Marcus from the very first day we spoke. She has enough energy to light up Las Vegas and an intense drive to succeed in corporate America. She has done assignments around the world, most recently in South Africa, and has been identified as a rising star in executive circles. She also came from humble beginnings, growing up in a single parent household in Harlem, with a mother who pushed hard for Gisele to have a better life. In fact, her mother's story reminded me of that of Kelly Williams-Bolar, the woman was sent to jail for sending her kids to a school outside their district. I don't care what the law says, there's nothing unethical about a mother fighting to give her children hope for the future. Just like the days of slavery, there remain systemic barriers to keep our kids away from opportunity, but also like our ancestors, good mothers don't allow anything to keep us away from our dreams. It is for her dogged pursuit of excellence and the remarkable example she sets for young black women that Gisele Marcus is today's Dr. Boyce Watkins Spotlight on AOL Black Voices.


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