As the Sands Burn was a popular online soap opera based on the campus of fictitious Ahpla University (Alpha spelled backward), an HBCU. Soap creator Darrius Jerome Gourdine wrote the soap from 1998-2000 in which time it was picked up by to run on their website. As the Sands Burn amassed a tremendous amount of followers becoming the second most viewed page on BET’s website; a site with over 3,000 pages.

Author Darrius Jerome Gourdine has decided to relaunch As the Sands Burn along with Kevin Parker of Greek Hang Suite ( Monday June 3rd will debut As the Sands Burn on the Greek Hang Suite website, a web destination for members of the Divine 9 (Black Greek pan Hellenic council) to post events and stay connecting to the happenings of the organizations.

The new season will feature all new characters on the same campus with the same types of plot twists and surprises. Readers can also expect guest appearances from some of the old characters who may drop in on occasion. The new As the Sands Burn contains features that will incorporate fun ways to stay connected to the author and to other fans.



Derek & Jamar Productions set to release an Alpha Kappa Alpha documentary

In 2006, Derek Fordjour and Jamar White embarked on a journey to document the legacy of historically black sororities.  This journey came to fruition with the creation of the film series, Black Sorority Project.  The Black Sorority Project series is the first initiative written, produced, and directed under Derek & Jamar Productions.  The production company is the product of a long-standing creative union between the friends and Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity line brothers.  The documentary is a two-part series highlighting the beginnings of the black sorority movement in America.  “We worked from a variety of stories and were extremely limited taking creative license with historical facts in order to preserve the integrity of the story, as we know it today.”  

The first installment, Black Sorority Project: The Exodus, which chronicled the creation of Delta Sigma Theta, was released in 2007.  The prequel, Black Sorority Project: The Genesis, the story of Alpha Kappa Alpha, is set to be released in Fall 2011.  The duo also previously collaborated on a similar project for their fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha, in 2000 when they released a short run video and the limited edition painting, “An Experiment in Brotherhood.”

Derek & Jamar productions has set up a mailing list for Alpha Kappa Alpha sorors and friends to obtain more information on the upcoming film release at

Carlo L’Chelle releases her debut album, “The Book of my Revelation”

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Carlo L'Chelle

Carlo L'Chelle recently released her debut album, The Book of my Revelation.(Photo Credit: Tamra Goodson)

From a young age Carlo L’Chelle was on the path to the creative and performing arts.  By the age of 3, she was singing in her church’s choir and by 10, she was writing poetry and songs. Throughout her life, poetry was her outlet and therapy from being bullied and through any challenges she faced.  Like most singers, the church was her foundation and her music director father was an early influence on her musical style.   Through her involvement in the Mt. Clare Community Choir, a local choir in Darlington, South Carolina, she honed her singing skills and was exposed various singing competitions and events with established musical artists, like Commissioned and Shirley Caesar.

Her journey to becoming a recording artist came to an improbable halt when she went to college.  Armed with a scholarship, she originally went to college to study biology and in 1998 became an Alpha Kappa Alpha woman. She later realized that her core classes did not hold her interest as much as writing,  singing, and performing.  “In my third year of college, I prayed to God and said, ‘What do you want me to do?’  He took me back over my whole life, and my passion was and is writing, performing, and singing. I had to follow my heart.  I started teaching English and creative writing but still felt like something was missing.”Carloe L'Chelle - The Book of My Revelation

Not one to live life with regret, she hooked up with husband and wife duo, Rod and June Long  (June was a college friend), and started the recording process, which took five years on and off.  From these recording sessions, they birthed the music, which eventually became her debut CD, “The Book of my Revelation.”  Though she still teaches full-time, with the support of her biggest supporter, her husband, Chris, she writes and records on the side and cites her students as some of her biggest fans.

“It’s the air I breathe, the rhythm of my stride, and the soundtrack to my life.” Carlo L’chelle

The CD is comprised of nine soulful songs, seven which were arranged by Carlo L’Chelle.  To celebrate the release of her debut album, there will be an album release party on December 4, 2010 at 9pm at Allure in Charlotte, North Carolina.

1508 S. Mint Street
Charlotte, NC 28203

(704) 241-2732

Dress to Impress (no sneakers please)

Admission is free with a VIP pass.  To print  your pass go to Carlo L’Chelle’s official website and click on the NEWS tab.  There will be signed CD’s available for sale at the event.  The album can also be previewed and purchased at

For more information go to:

Honorary Soror Iyanla Vanzant to hold a book signing in Silver Spring, MD

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Iyanla Vanzant
On Friday, November 19, 2010, Honorary Soror, Iyanla Vanzant will hold a book signing to promote her new memoir, “Peace From Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through at Montgomery College for Performing Arts in Silver Springs, Maryland.”  In this book, she recalls how she overcame childhood neglect, teen pregnancy, and physical abuse.
Soror Vanzant travels globally delivering her special brand of self-empowerment and inspiration to others.  Through Inner Visions Institute for Spiritual Development, which she found and currently directs, Iyanla shares her spiritual & religious traditions and teachings, in order to motivate others to  create a better life, a better community and a better world.
Date: Friday, November 19, 2010
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Cost: $10 Advance Tickets/ $15 at the door
UPDATE: Soror Vanzant recently sat down for an interview with the infamous Mo’ Kelly, where she discussed among other things contemplating  committing suicide with a pink pistol, how she got over the untimely death of her daughter, and why Eminen is her ringtone.  The interview can be heard by clicking here or at the Mo’ Kelly Report.

Honorary Soror Ntozake Shange to hold a book signing at The DuSable Museum in Chicago

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Ntozake Shange and Ifa Bayeza

Soror Ntozake Shange and Ifa Bayeza released, Some Sing, Some Cry. (Photo Credit:

On Friday, November 19, 2010, Ntozake Shange, author of For colored girls who considered suicide/When the rainbow is enuf and an honorary member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. will host a book signing at the DuSable Museum for the Chicago debut of their new novel, Some Sing, Some Cry. Soror Shange will appear with her sister and co-author, Ifa Bayeza, the author of The Ballad of Emmit Till.

This unique evening of words and music will also feature Chicago’s finest musician including Maggie Brown.

Date: Friday, November 19, 2010
Time: 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Cost: $10 General Admission/ $8 DuSable Museum Members

Please note that Ms. Shange and Ms. Bayeza will only be signing copies of Some Sing, Some Cry.


Historically black sorority leaders featured in Essence magazine

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Carolyn House Stewart is featured in the December 2010 edition of Essence magazine. (Photo Credit: Melissa Golden)

Carolyn House Stewart is featured in the December 2010 edition of Essence magazine. (Photo Credit: Melissa Golden)

Each month millions of professional African-American women look forward to getting the new issue of Essence magazine.  However, for the over half million members of the historically black sororities, the December 2010 issue is a special treat because it contains a special joint interview with the leaders of the four historically black sororities.

In Essence’s second installment in their looking at the state of African-American women series, Dawn M. Baskerville interviews Carolyn House Stewart, along Cynthia M.A. Butler-McIntyre, Sheryl P. Underwood, and Joann Loveless, the leaders of Delta Sigma Theta, Zeta Phi Beta, and Sigma Gamma Rho respectively. The ladies discuss their organization’s program platforms, public perception of sororities and black women,  women’s economic and physical health, and the future of black women.  The sorority presidents set the example for sistagreeks worldwide by displaying greek unity through a united message of sisterhood and service.
Presidents of the four historically black sororities

Jade Edwards and Denisha Warren launch a women’s empowerment blog inspired by the July 2010 issue of Essence magazine

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When most people think of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, they think of the Scarlet Knights football team or Coach C. Vivian Stringer and the Rutgers women’s basketball team that was in the news a couple of years ago because of disparaging remarks made by radio host, Don Imus.  But those things are in New Brunswick, New Jersey, where Rutgers University has its main campus.  However, if you drive about an hour south on the New Jersey Turnpike, you will arrive to the Camden campus of Rutgers.  It was at Rutgers – Camden that Jade Edwards and Denisha Warren attended college and were initiated into Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. in 2006.  The co-initiates remain close friends and roommates.

This past summer Jade and Denisha, like many black women, read the July 2010 issue of Essence magazine and when they turned to page 124 found the spread entitled  “Why I LOVE being a Black Woman.”  The co-initiates were inspired by the article and took the challenge of the “20 things every black woman should experience” list and decided to chart they journey in the newly launched blog, D.I.V.A. Rules.  (Defining Inner Victory with Attitude).  D.I.V.A., which launched on August 27th,was created to celebrate success, positivity, empowerment, high self-esteem and liberating experiences by and for Black women.

The blog features various topics that will highlight issues, successes, and insight to uplift women.  The schedule is as follows:

Sunday- “Spark” ~ Highlight weekly inspirational and motivational stories, quotes and start your week off right!
Monday- “Money Matters” ~ Financial advice and activity challenges
Tuesday- “True Expression” ~ Explore the creative aspect within the Fashion, Entertainment and the Arts Industry
Wednesday- “Work-It Out” ~ Health (mental, emotional, social and physical) & fitness education, concerns, and awareness
Thurday- “Think About It” ~ Views and/or opinions of an important topic that is concerning you, whether personally or within our society
Friday- is “Fierce!” ~ Have OD’s (original DIVAS’) give insight on their life’s experiences, and lessons they can offer
Saturdays-“SIRve It Up”~ Welcome advice and viewpoint(s) from the male perspective

The blog can be found at: