Posted on: March 7, 2024 Posted by: Dr. Thelá Thatch Comments: 0
'To Be Celebrated' recipients continue the Black Excellence Brunch tradition. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.
‘To Be Celebrated’ recipients continue the Black Excellence Brunch tradition. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.

March 3, 2024, marked a pivotal moment in the world of entertainment as the Black Excellence Brunch presented To Be Celebrated, a continuation of celebration and family. The atmosphere exudes excellence from the instant guests step into the venue. Guests smile for the cameras and settle into the opulent space adorned with embellished décor.

Attendees indulge in the delectably seasoned Southern comforts against the backdrop of a pool adorned with floating pink and blush rose petals. Tasty morsels like sweet potato pearl sugar waffles, lemon dill salmon croquettes, kale and bell pepper scramble, and Don Julio Rosado Tequila grace the menu. The invite-only event was graced by luminaries like Kyla Pratt, Niecy Nash, and Tabitha Brown. The event is a tribute to the unsung heroes behind the scenes.  To Be Celebrated honors the masterminds who orchestrate the magic.

Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images
Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images
Trell Thomas curates Black Excellence through Sunday brunches and strong partnerships. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.
Trell Thomas curates Black Excellence through Sunday brunches and strong partnerships. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.

Giving them their flowers now

In a candid moment, Shaylin Jones of Tabitha Brown’s squad expresses her gratitude for the recognition. Accustomed to working behind the scenes, Shaylin cares for Tab’s hair, nicknamed “Donna.”  For four years, Shaylin has showcased her talents as a part of Tab’s glam squad. During Tab’s recent book tour, Shaylin introduced a new style for “Donna” each day. Makeup artist Brandie Naeemah King was acknowledged for her craft and decade-long partnership with Tab.  Brandie infuses every project with the trademark “Fabtabulosity” that Auntie Tab fans have come to adore.

Tabitha's Brown dream team received recognition for their contributions.
Tabitha’s Brown Dream team received recognition for their contributions. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.

Niecy Nash kicked off the afternoon by turning the tables on her wife, Jesica Betts. Nash honored Jesica for her unwavering support in their relationship. Fatima Robinson shared a video message celebrating Fullout Cortland and Tia Rivera, the choreographers behind mesmerizing moves for celebrities like SZA, Doja Cat, Beyoncé, and J-Lo. Cortland and Tia were honored for their contribution to pop culture and shared words of wisdom.

“Create what feels good,” Cortland encouraged.

In a tear-filled moment, Kyla Pratt honored her mom, Kecia Pratt-McCullar, for her sacrifice and commitment to Pratt’s career.

Kyla Pratt and her mom Kecia Pratt-McCullar celebrate their relationship.
Kyla Pratt and her mom, Kecia Pratt-McCullar, celebrate their relationship. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.

To be Celebrated

At the heart of To Be Celebrated is Trell Thomas. Trell is a media expert and activist. He transforms cherished memories of Sunday brunches with his family into thriving events. He uplifts individuals from diverse backgrounds, particularly people of color, and promotes a positive impact. His efforts extend beyond geographical boundaries.  He organizes events not only across the country but also within the African diaspora, including South Africa and Ghana.

Trell Thomas celebrates the To Be Celebrated. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.
Trell Thomas celebrates the success of the ‘To Be Celebrated’ event. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.

 

Rooted in Tradition

The Black Excellence Brunch is rooted in the family tradition of Sunday Dinner.  For enslaved people in the United States, Sundays were a time of rest and recognition.  The event brings together millennials of color from all industries to build a genuine community.  Eating and brunch set the tone for the celebration.  The brunch demonstrates how brands can engage with the culture. It connects with creators and social media influencers. Creators who are moving the needle, carrying the torch, and birthing the next generation of Black excellence. To Be Celebrated takes Black excellence to the next level by recognizing these often unsung creators.

Trell Johnson continues the tradition of family and celebration.

Celebrating Diverse Talents

Trell is a firm believer in the power of one’s gift. He sees himself as a connector. Embracing the close-knit dynamics of his team, he exudes meticulous attention to detail.  At the top of Trell’s mind is to create a seamless experience from decor to sound, video, and photography.  In Trell’s eyes, Sunday brunch isn’t just about grits and biscuits; it’s an authentic celebration of life. His mantra, “Your gift will make room for you,” echoes through his journey.

Breaking Stereotypes

Trell urges Gen X’ers, non-millennials, and other groups to discard misconceptions about millennials and their entrepreneurial pursuits and embrace opportunities to celebrate diverse talents.  Reflecting on his proudest moments, perseverance takes center stage for Trell. The authenticity embedded in his space is a testament to his unwavering commitment to morals and values.

What’s next for Trell? More Black Excellence Brunches and more To Be Celebrated.  And there is more—a TV show, an awards ceremony, and exciting brand partnerships. One thing is clear, a celebration of talent and the relentless pursuit of excellence will continue.

 

Guests enjoy the Black Excellence Brunch. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.
Guests enjoy the Black Excellence Brunch. Photo Courtesy of Kai Byrd.