The Third Annual ESSENCE GU Summit in Atlanta


This past weekend, ESSENCE Girls United celebrated black girls by hosting their third annual summit at the Atlanta Contemporary Arts Center in Atlanta, GA. The theme of this year’s summit was “Forever the Blueprint” — a celebration of Black girls and gender-expansive youth who continue to be the blueprint for progression, tenacity, and resilience. The Girls United Summit is brought to you by major sponsors such as The Coca-Cola Company®, along with supporting sponsors, SheaMoisture, Ford, and American Airlines.

The ESSENCE Girls United Summit provides black girls the opportunity to network, connect and learn from each other. The positive energy, shared knowledge, and sense of community left a positive impact on attendees. This experience was free for all attendees including parking, drinks from The Coca-Cola Company® 's mocktail bar, and food provided by Slutty Vegan, Soul Truckin Good, and Cereal & Cream. Attendees also enjoyed a musical performance by Rubi Rose.

Summit Highlights:

●  Reginae Carter hosted the summit with panelists throughout the day, leading discussion covering the crucial topics on most Gen-Z and Millennials’ minds

●  Slay Your Life: Tips and Tricks with Slayology CEO Keleah Slay

●  The Reel You: Embracing Authentic Content Creation with Content Creator, Donye Taylor

●  I Am The Bar: Cultural Identity, Confidence & Hollywood with Paige Audrey-Marie Hurd, Aoki Lee Simmons, Jessie Woo, and Alycia Pascual Pena

●  DND: Protecting Your Peace Through Black Girl Friendships with Nandi Howard, Dess Dior, Jayda Cheaves, and Rechelle Dennis

Some of the notable guests include Alycia Pascual-Pena, Aoki Lee Simmons, Ayana Taylor, Aliyah’s Interlude, Rubi Rose, Brandy Merriweather, Coco Jones, Dess Dior, Paige Audrey-Marie Hurd, Jayda Cheaves, Jessie Woo, Latoya Forever, Tiff the Barber, TM Twins, Brittani Sade, Rechelle Dennis and many more!

Activities for attendees included tooth gems, nail art by Lyra Luxe Nails, fresh cuts by Tiff The Barber, and a gaming station hosted by Cxmmunity and teen girl gamer Queen Khamyra.

The speed mentoring sessions with professionals from a variety of industries sparked inspiration for many of the attendees. The GU Just For You Marketplace also included Brooklyn Tea, Stay Positive Inc, LaBlu Serenity, Lilac Reign, The Tsuri Company, Humans Before Handles, Full Bloom By Lauren.

After the Summit, ESSENCE GU hosted an invite-only dinner called the 2022 Future Makers Awards Dinner. This event was hosted by actress and singer Coco Jones and sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company® and supporting sponsor Ford. The dinner highlighted women for their activism and brilliance as well as celebrated their achievements within their careers.

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