Education and sports

MidWestOne Bank, 102 S. Clinton Street
Friday, March 24th, 2017

RELAX: TALK: GROW (RTG) is a networking/policy planning event hosted by the University of Iowa African American Council and the Public Policy Center. RTG combines fellowship, local artists and policy discussions. Addressing the experiences of Iowa City's black folks both on and off campus, each program runs from 5:30-7 p.m. and features a blend of relaxed socializing, creative performance and targeted conversation. 

Panelists include:

  • Tangela Cheatham
    Tangela Cheatham
     joined the University of Iowa Student-Athlete Academic Services staff in August 2016 as the Career Specialist and Academic Coordinator. Her responsibilities include developing and implementing career programming for all student-athletes, assisting with the Athletic Transition Seminar, and assisting with the coordination of events and programs within the Hawkeye Life program. As an Academic Coordinator she works with football and underclassmen rowing student-athletes. Cheatham started as an intern with the football program and Academic Learning Center at the University of Michigan before serving as a graduate assistant at the University of Oklahoma in Student-Athlete Development. Cheatham was born and raised in Detroit, Mich., and enjoys reading, watching Serena Williams dominate the world of tennis, karaoke, and advocating for student-athletes.
  • Acie Earl
    Acie Earl
     had a storied basketball career at the University of Iowa. Drafted by the Boston Celtics in 1993, he played professionally in the NBA and overseas in such notable basketball countries such as Serbia/Montenegro, Australia, Spain, Greece, France, Turkey and Poland. Earl coached in the ABA with the Tijuana Dragones, in the WBA with the Cleveland Magic, and in the area at Solon High School. Currently, he runs Venom Sports, a company focused on providing personal instruction that will develop leadership and basketball skills in young people.
  • Caleb Thomas
    Caleb Thomas
    , M.A., TLHMC, is the Executive Director of Strive For Success Academic and Enrichment Youth Center. Strive For Success is a faith-based, Christ-centered non-profit. Strive For Success works with at-risk youth in grades 3-8 to help them achieve academic proficiency in their reading and math. Thomas is a native of Des Moines, and received his B.A. and M.A. from the University of Iowa. He worked as a school counselor for seven years at Grant Wood Elementary in Iowa City before starting Strive For Success. Thomas has a passion for youth, especially at-risk youth, in helping them to achieve academic, personal and social success. Thomas is a licensed and ordained minister and currently works as a Mental Health Counselor at Cornerstone Brief Therapy in Coralville. 

Featured artist:

Tameka Norris
Tameka Jenean Norris, a.k.a. Meka Jean, is an artist currently working between Berlin, New Orleans and Los Angeles. Her interdisciplinary work—spanning painting, performance, video and social practice—critiques the continuing invisibility of blackness in mainstream culture today. Using herself and her communities as her subjects, Norris questions how identities are formed on personal and cultural levels. Norris received an MFA in painting from the Yale University School of Art in 2012 and a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her work was the subject of a solo exhibition at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, and was included in “Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art” at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston; Performa 13 at The Studio Museum in Harlem; and the international art exhibition “Prospect.3: Notes for Now” in New Orleans. Norris is represented by Jane Lombard Gallery in New York, Ronchini Gallery in London and David Shelton Gallery in Houston.