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Avista Products Presents 2021 Blackbook



Black Professionals, Greek Sororities and Fraternities Featured in 2021 Blackbook Yearbook & Directory 

San Antonio, TX Dec. 1, 2021 –The San Antonio Blackbook Yearbook & Directory is proud to feature the “Divine Nine” this year in its annual book and premiere party on Monday, Dec. 6 at Antioch Sports Complex at 6 pm. The nine Greek Black fraternities and sororities that make up the “Divine Nine” have given thousands of dollars in scholarships to local students and helped countless nonprofits in supporting underserved residents. 

In addition to the “Divine Nine,” the 230-page Blackbook features nine individuals who have risen to prominence in their positions or given selflessly to the community. The candidates this year are: 

  • Vincent T. Davis – San Antonio Express-News Journalist
  • Marcel Johnson – Senior Vice President, Port San Antonio 
  • Alethia Jones – Artist/Painter
  • Bill Kent – Owner of BTL Technology
  • Deborah Omowale Jarmon,CEO/Director, San Antonio African American Community Archive and Museum
  • Mark Outing – Owner of Mark’s Outing
  • Judge Jason Pulliam, U.S. Western District
  • San Antonio Poet Laureate Andrea “Vocab” Sanderson
  • Charles Williams – Entrepreneurial pioneer on East Side

Bringing these individuals and Greek organizations together in one book is significant because it gives San Antonio an opportunity to see their community impact. Blackbook Publisher Carl Booker said for the last 10 years, this book has brought out the rich diversity that is here in our city but often is not recognized. These professionals and organizations quietly push the envelope to lead and be the best in their organizations. This is also the only local print publication where you will find over 1,400 business listings featuring mostly Black business owners and showcases event coverage of prominent local African American events.  

“In this edition of the Blackbook, we were able to capture a year a lot of people would like to forget due to the pandemic. As stewards of our generation, it is our responsibility to document and measure where we are at and even how struggles have shaped us. Despite the challenge we faced last year, this book gives me hope of the strength of our local Black community,” said Booker, who is also owner of San Antonio-based Avista Products. 

The Blackbook is an award-winning publication that is archived in the Institute of Texan Cultures Library Collection, UTSA’s Libraries Special Collections and the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History at UT Austin. This year’s event is emceed by Jermaine “J Cole” Coleman, Sr., U.S. Army veteran, TV/film producer, director and writer and host of various Black Video News shows. To learn more about the Blackbook, go here.

About Avista Products

Avista Products creates and publishes the Blackbook annually. Avista Products also provides business solutions, design and production services for the community in the greater San Antonio area. Additionally, it partners with local corporate, nonprofits and other organizations to encourage best business practices in the African American Community. For more information, visit

About Blackbook Directory & Yearbook

Blackbook Directory and Yearbook is an annual hardback book featuring archival activities and industry profiles with business listings. Black Video News, compliments the Blackbook, and is a news network that has been also documenting the local community. It will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2022. Additional information:,, 

You can still be a part of history by joining us one last time in 2021.

What’s inside?

230 Full Color pages w/hardback cover
Over 1400 Business Listings
38 Page spread of regional
       Greek Chapter Roll Call

2021 Special Event Coverage
Dreamweek Pictorial Recap
Black Worship Clergy Hall of Fame Dinner
Introducing the Class of 2021
       Blacks @ Work
San Antonio’s Most Influential
       Dream Team


Emotional Emancipation Circles: Nurturing Black Mental Health




By Ayana Brown, MHPS

“We are going to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery because whilst others might free the body, none but ourselves can free the mind.” – Marcus Garvey

As Black Americans, we carry the weight of our ancestors’ struggles, resilience, and triumphs. Our collective history is filled with pain, but it is also infused with strength. In the face of ongoing challenges, it is essential for us to prioritize our emotional well-being and seek healing. There are more than 100 types of therapy, yet few are culturally based. Even fewer are made available to Black, Indigenous and People of Color, or the BIPOC community. One powerful tool that can aid in this process is the Emotional Emancipation Circle (EEC).

Emotional Emancipation Circles from the Community Healing Network (CHN) provide a safe and supportive space to confront and heal from the psychological and emotional wounds inflicted by racism, discrimination, and systemic oppression. Endorsed by the late Maya Angelou in 2009 and supported by the Association of Black Psychologists, EECs are rooted in the understanding that our mental and emotional well-being is as important as our physical health.

These support groups are structured and evidence-based settings where people from the diaspora participate in open and honest talks, allowing us to express the various feelings of being Black. We share our tales, worries, hopes, and dreams with the knowledge that we are not being judged. We offer support to one another via active listening, empathy, and affirmation, forming links of healing and resilience. We also discover our genuine history. 

Empowered by what I was first exposed to in Panama, I became a certified facilitator in 2021. I recognize that the BIPOC community struggles with insufficient access to resources and feels their individual needs are overlooked. As a disabled veteran, caregiver, and parent, I am passionate about advocating, consulting, and collaborating with a nationwide network of providers dedicated to education and empowerment. This is a service that REACH Peer Support Services offers to “fill in the gaps” between our community needs and what is offered. 

The Community Healing Network has formed these circles globally. If you want to learn more about CHN and other BIPOC-focused mental health resources and services for your church, organization, or family, go to  (  Those who join the newsletter will know about the next EEC location first. 

After serving honorably in the United States Navy, Ayana Brown, MHPS, launched REACH Peer Support Services, LLC in 2021 to use her various experiences towards her passion, empowering families to heal with advocacy and non-judgmental support.

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San Antonio Airport to Set Record for Travel During Memorial Day Weekend




More people are packing their suitcases for trips in and out of San Antonio International Airport (SAT) than ever before. SAT will see a record-breaking number of travelers – close to 190,000 total – from Thursday to Memorial Day. During that 5-day period, there’s an estimated 14% increase in scheduled seats to and from SAT compared to 2019 and a 19% increase since last year.

We’re expecting the busiest Memorial Day weekend travel in our airport’s history,” said Jesus Saenz, Director of Airports, San Antonio Airport System. “People want to fly and it’s getting more affordable to do so. We are seeing more competitive fares with the addition of Spirit Airlines over the last year – and that’s helping our travelers find better deals on flights that are too good to pass up. We’re also expecting our busiest summer ever, but right now we’re focused on making sure everyone has a smooth experience in the days ahead.”

According to the Transportation Security Administration, here’s a day-by-day breakdown of how many passengers are expected to fly in and out of SAT:

  • Thursday: 38,514
  • Friday: 38,600
  • Saturday: 34,000
  • Sunday: 38,100
  • Memorial Day: 37,700

Fly Away Valet has also set records recently. Earlier this month, the company reported a gigantic increase in parking spaces at SAT since the service began in 2020. The service started with 80 spaces and now has 500.

Last week, valet operations were consolidated to the Short-Term Parking Garage for both pick-up and drop-off of vehicles.

For more information and to watch a video showing how to valet park at SAT, please visit the airport’s website.

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75 Years of Providing Worldwide Service as Zetas and Friends




Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, The Mighty” Southern Region is hosting its 94th Southern Regional Leadership Conference and 55th Southern Regional Amicae Leadership Workshop from June 8 – June 10, 2023. The conference site is the Marriott Rivercenter, located on the River Walk at 101 Bowie Street, San Antonio, Texas 78205.

The theme,“Celebrating 75 Years of Providing Worldwide Service as Zetas and Friends,” is aligned to Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated’s efforts to address and bring awareness to health disparities and social determinants in Texas and Louisiana.  The Southern Regional Leadership Conference is hosting two events that are open for the public to attend: a Health Justice Townhall and a Public Program that includes a Night of Performing Arts.

The Southern Regional Health Justice Townhall is June 8, 2023, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., and will be moderated by Dr. Stacie NC Grant, International President and CEO of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated. The town hall will provide a platform for open and honest dialogue on health justice, healthcare, health disparities, and social determinants.  The panel will consist of experts in the fields of health, civic and social advocates and leaders who serve as Champions for health justice and equity. 

“The Mighty” Southern Regional Public Program is June 9, 2023, from 7:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.  It will consist of recognition of San Antonio community leaders who are Embracing the Extraordinary with Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, and a Night of Performing Arts featuring Billy Ray Shepard.   

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