Over the past 20 years Alex Simmons has written (and in some cases also created) a number of juvenile mysteries under a variety of pseudonyms for many well-known publishers. He has also penned two educational documentaries and several stage plays. One of his plays, Sherlock Holmes & the Hands of Othello, received critical praise and was published in Black Thunder: An Anthology of Contemporary African American Drama, published by Signet/Mentor Books. Simmons has written three movie novelizations for Disney and three biographies for Steck-Vaughn, including one on Denzel Washington. As a voiceover talent, Simmons can be heard on a wide range of projects from O’Henry Bars, to podcasting financial information for DeLoitte and Touche. Simmons has traveled the country as a guest speaker and teaching artist. He has developed and conducted creative writing workshops (prose, comics, journalism, and playwriting), as well as consulted on a number of creative arts programs and curricula for children. Currently, Simmons is the founder of the annual Kids Comic Con, founder and curator of the Color of Comics Exhibition, and serving on the board of the New York State Alliance for Arts and Education. He is affiliated with the Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art, and is also a member of the New York Writer’s Workshop.
Obama used his weekly radio and video address to announce the nomination of former New York City Health Commissioner Margaret Hamburg as FDA commissioner, and his choice of Baltimore Health Commissioner Joshua Sharfstein as her deputy.
The president also said he was creating a Food Safety Working Group to coordinate food safety laws throughout government and advise him on how to update them. Many of these laws, essential to safeguarding the public from disease, haven’t been touched since they were written in the time of President Theodore Roosevelt, he said.
Obama said the food safety system is too spread out, making it difficult to share information and solve problems.
He also blamed recent underfunding and understaffing at FDA that has left the agency unable to conduct annual inspections of more than a fraction of the 150,000 food processing plants and warehouses in the country.
“That is a hazard to public health. It is unacceptable. And it will change under the leadership of Dr. Margaret Hamburg,” Obama pledged.
The Sexualization of Our Young Girls Recently, I read article online about little girls receiving pedicures as young as six years old. Mattel is due to release the new Black Canary Barbie, a.k.a. Hooker Barbie in September. And the Mommy blogger sites lit up with commentary on this subject of the Sexualization of Our Young Girls. Most of them crying “Enough is enough!” What are we teaching our girls? What is the key to positive healthy body image and self-esteem for girls and teens? What’s your opinion?
Elizabeth Atkins has appeared on Montell Williams and Oprah. She is a journalist, best selling author and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. She is an expert speaker on the topic of multi-racial identity. http://www.elizabethatkins.com/