November 18, 2011 § 1 Comment
We appreciate all of our media hits, including this one in the Dallas Weekly:
October 15, 2011 § Leave a comment
There is so much to tell you and time has moved so swiftly we hardly had time to stop and blog about it!
Johnson Products’ signature brand Gentle Treatment,® launched an initiative about Domestic Violence three years ago. The past two years we have been selected Sheros who were nominated by friends and co-workers.
This year, we selected one Shero to travel with us to Washington DC. Her name is Lisa Baldwin Miller, founder of the Wonderfully Made Foundation in Oklahoma City, OK. We were going to Washington DC to sponsor and testify before a Congressional Hearing –the first of its kind on the effects Domestic Violence has on children, in coordination with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Makers of Memories Foundation. Our CEO, Eric Brown spoke for the company and lauded Lisa for her work with her DV shelter, her public outreach to bring awareness to this issue which we learned at the hearing that there is only 2% public recognition about this issue! We’ve got work to do!
Congressman John Conyers was present as was Congresswomen Gwen Moore and Sheila Jackson-Lee. The panel consisted of many survivors, including celebrity spokesperson Norwood Young, April Hernandez Castillo, 14 year old Ariel Berrean and Jennifer Collins.
The following day, Lisa accompanied Renee Brown, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing to Bethany House of Northern VA where they toured their shelter and presented them with a $25,000 five-year grant.
Lisa says she was treated like royalty. She ate at fine restaurants, including B. Smith’s at Union Station, then went to the King Memorial.
You can hear Lisa’s story as well as other excerpts of testimonies on Sunday Morning-Live Oct. 16. If you are reading this after that day, still click the link as the show posts immediately after airing: http://tobtr.com/s/2352699. You can also fast forward to the second hour of the show to hear these testimonies. They are powerful.
Here are selected photos from the Congressional Hearing and other parts of the trip. Enjoy! Click to View Photo Recap
To view Bethany House Check Presentation, click here.
October 3, 2011 § Leave a comment
Around Johnson Products Company, October is the month we encourage abusers: No Excuse! Stop the abuse!
On our website, people nominate Sheros–women who (s)heroically work to pluck women out of abusive situations because they feel they have nowhere to go.
Soon, we will select one Shero from those we’ve posted to fly to Washington DC for an impactful congressional hearing. You can read their stories and hear their interviews. Visit www.JPCNoExcuse.org.
There you will find a resource page with links to experienced organizations that will help you or the ones you love flee to safety because we have learned that there is a way to leave for your safety and the safety of the children and the families.
Johnson Products Company is a heritage hair care company targeted toward African-American women with a new line for men–Ultra Sheen Men. Remember! We are not to be confused with Johnson & Johnson!
September 14, 2011 § Leave a comment
September 10, 2011 § Leave a comment
As the world remembers Sept. 11th, 10 years later, Johnson Products remembers too. For three of our company members, they barely escaped that day with their lives.
An interview with Renee Brown
Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Johnson Products, Dallas, Texas.
by Isidra Person-Lynn
Host, Sunday Morning Live 9/11/11 @ 10 a.m. PDT 1 p.m. EST
This interview will be aired at this link in full audio:
As you know, on the legendary 9/11, Dallas-based Renee Cottrell-Brown, her husband, Eric, and their sales and marketing team at Pro-Line International (the company founded by Renee’s father), barely got out of New York City with their lives while staying at the World Trade Center Marriott Hotel. With just a hotel robe on her back and flimsy slippers on her feet, Renee and her husband fled on foot, and had to depend on “the kindness of strangers” to get to safety and ultimately get back home to Dallas.
Ten years later, the spirit of giving to strangers rings true more now for Renee than ever before. Today, as the Executive Vice-President of Sales and Marketing for Dallas-based Johnson Products Company (which her husband Eric led the effort to purchase and bring back to the community it serves), Renee and Eric have given over $50,000 to local and national nonprofits in the U.S. Moreover, next month, in support of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Renee will lead the third year of the company’s initiative on domestic violence called “No Excuse! Stop the Abuse!” This year, the campaign will stop in Washington, D.C. and Johnson Products Company will co-sponsor a congressional briefing on federal domestic violence support for children and women in association with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Eric and Renee’s horrific experience ten years ago will never be forgotten. And, the generosity shown to her is now being shown to others through her professional and personal commitment to making our society better for all.
For the complete audio interview, visit Sunday Morning Live at http://tobtr.com/s/2258953. It will air live on Sunday and be available for archive shortly after Noon PDT, Sept. 11, 2011.
Here are Assorted quotes from Renee Brown about that fateful day and the 10 years hence:
The Jolt that Started it All
My husband Eric was dressed and about to leave for his flight to Washington DC. I was pondering going up a floor to the gym. Surrounded by glass, it was beautiful to work out while gazing upon all of New York from that floor about 27 stories up in the hotel dwarfed between the Twin Towers–the World Trade Center. Just then we felt a jolt that would rattle us to the core. Debris began falling. I had slipped on a robe and slippers while Eric went to look out and see. I assumed that there had been an implosion that we did not get the memo for. That’s when he sprang into action. He said “let’s go.” He grabbed our laptops, I grabbed my purse, really wondering if all that would be necessary. We walked down the flights of stairs–a real feat considering my uncooperative knee and ankle which had been injured years before. When we got outside, firemen and policemen guided the growing numbers across the street.
Watching the Planes Hit:
When I looked up, this aircraft with a total grey underbelly, was flying so low I could see its windows. It happened so fast. The realization that the first explosion heard had been another airplane was just sinking in. And then when the 2nd plane hit the 2nd tower, there was pandemonium. People were running, screaming and crying trying to find a safe haven wherever they could.
When they all came tumbling down
Nobody knew while firemen and policemen were rushing into the scene that the next scene would be to see these massive buildings collapse on top of one another and create a volcano and avalanche of dust and debris that overcame many people. Fortunately, since all I had on was a robe and some slippers that morning, I did have on my night scarf and it may have saved my life, because when all that debris came, I wrapped it around my nose and mouth to keep all the suffocating debris out of my respiratory system.
Don’t Look Up!
They were warning us not to look up because at that time they knew there were jumpers and they didn’t want us to see that because they knew that would stop us in our tracks. But once the Firemen and Policemen got us across the street we turned around, there was pandemonium. We tried to run, and thought we’d found a taxi but as I was getting in, a stranger pulled me out and jumped in. The police were encouraging everybody to move out of the immediate area so we ran and we ran down to Battery Park (several blocks away. We found a bus but they did not want to let me on at first because I was so dirty. We made it to the downtown area and then over to the ferry to New Jersey.
Kindness of strangers
I always like telling this part of the story: Even in bad situations there is always some good. When we got to the ferry, a pregnant woman took us in, allowed us to come to her home in New Jersey, gave us food and took me to get my medicine for my bad leg. She knew nothing about us but she did this and a whole lot more for us. We could not have made it without her.
My sales and marketing team for Pro-Line was scattered everywhere
My husband and I were in NY because of a meeting with Pro-Line’s sales and marketing team with Uniworld, an advertising agency in New York. Some fled to Harlem, others went in other directions. My husband, is usually running a bit behind but in this case I was not mad at him because he encouraged me to leave the room after the first plane hit, which I had not considered since I was not dressed. I am really thankful we were together for all of this.
How did you get home?
“Remember all planes were grounded, which meant all trains and buses were packed. In a few days, the owners of our company chartered a tour bus (like the entertainers use) and it was driven up from Florida to pick up our team and get us back to Dallas.
How did all the other Proline survivors fare?
We all had issues after 9/11. When you are that close to the event, you do have psychological shortcomings after seeing people jump to their deaths. It is very difficult to manage psychologically. I was able to fly again relatively soon, but still am uncomfortable with heights. For one of our brand managers Deline Cormier, flying was very difficult for her.
Still, everyone is doing relatively well. We all keep in touch, especially on those anniversaries. We will always remember those who were not as fortunate as we were. We count our blessings, and send each other little prayers or greetings to let everyone know we are doing. Everyone else has their own things going. Most stayed in Dallas.
Believe it or not, my husband and I acquired a new brand from Procter & Gamble, Johnson Products Company, and brought it back to the African American community from which it grew. Dee, who now lives in New Jersey, continues to work for us now. As the years went by, I think the significance dwindled somewhat. The media was really on top of what was going on in the lives of those who had been there that day, but now I think with the 10th anniversary, it brings back the memories more vividly.
On Talking About it Each Year:
Sam Putney, Dallas morning news director, called me a year later and woke me up in the wee hours of the morning to talk about it. We have done many interviews. This year it probably touches me more than it has any year in the past. Maybe because there is so much media blitz there is a haunting memory. When I think back to that morning it is something I try to erase out of my mind. It was a very horrifying morning. I don’t think my adrenalin has ever been that high. I ran so much that day –I would dare to say maybe about three miles–that the next day when I woke up I couldn’t even move a muscle because everything was so tight and so worn out from the day before.
When Bin Laden was killed:
Eric went cheering around the house. We felt he took so many innocent lives that justice had finally been done. Normally, I don’t feel that way because I don’t believe in an eye for an eye, but innocent people were going to their everyday jobs minding their own business and terrorists decide to take their lives away from their loved ones. That was devastating. But now I am concerned about retaliation.
What have Eric and Renee been doing in the last 10 years?
After we left Alberto Culver (which purchased Pro-Line) I did some consulting.Two friends and I started a small start up natural hair care line called Nature’s Essential Ingredients. In 2009, my husband, along with some investors in CA acquired Johnson Products’ Gentle Treatment and Ultra Sheen brands and brought them back to the community. I became Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, so I am very busy these days.
Thanks to Johnson Products, we are back to philanthropy–being able to give, which from the heritage of my father’s company, Pro-Line, is something that is inbred. Without the community there is no reason for these hair care companies. They are the base. If they don’t buy there is no company, so we know how important it is to give back.
Gentle Treatment’s No Excuse! Stop the Abuse! Domestic Violence Initiative
We donate to various causes, but in the case of Johnson Products, we thought it was very important to give back in an area that is somewhat neglected. One in 4 women is abused in the country, and that total number is very much more than those lost in the World Trade Center. We have a brand “Gentle Treatment” which resonated with this issue.
Early on, we founded Gentle Treatment’s No Excuse! Stop the Abuse! Domestic Violence Initiative. This is our third year working on this issue. We started in Chicago then Dallas and this year we are on our way to Washington DC, where we will co-sponsor a congressional briefing on federal domestic violence support for children and women in association with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Jobs for the Community
Our plant is located where African-Americans, Latinos and whoever uses our products can work. We could have located JPC anywhere but we wanted the company to be in the distance of a bus ride.
Why it is Important to Tell Our Story
Watching some of the media, you’d forget African-Americans were there. Many lives were lost, of all hues, and there are survivors of all hues, African, Latino, Asian, and Middle Eastern American citizens who are doing good things for our country. If we don’t tell out stories for ourselves, who will tell it?
Any hopes for the future?
World Peace! No matter how you ant to ignore what is happening abroad you cn see it first hand…I felt remiss not to tell my story this year, because I think people need to know yeah people were there that day they survived it and they re people of color. They are people who are doing the right thing. Giving back, and not suing, we’ve employed more people trued to get on with our lives we have overcome adversity just everyday good American citizens and we happen to be minority and
Was there anything you left behind you really miss owning?
It was all pretty much material. I got my purse, which had my credit cards which could help me move forward. I lost a $25,000 watch but who cares when it a matter of you saving your life? I would have gave up 10,000 watches if I could have helped save some of those people who perished.
Carmelo Anthony and Ludacris team up for Charity at Luda Day Weekend. Ultra Sheen Men showcased at Clark Atlanta University.
September 9, 2011 § Leave a comment
See more photos from the recent Luda Day Weekend at Clark Atlanta Univesity where Ultra Sheen Men was showcased on www.Facebook.com/UltraSheenMen
This photo: Rhonda Stoneham. Photos on FB by Isidra Person-Lynn
September 1, 2011 § Leave a comment
Carmelo Anthony, the Ultra Sheen Men Celebrity Representative and Jahminah Harris, Ultra Sheen Supreme package model have a chance encounter in Los Angeles. Jahminah tells the story:
“Since winning The Great Model Search just last year, I had the opportunity to share my story in Detroit among family and friends as the newest face of Ultra Sheen Supreme. Seeing my face in stores like Walmart, Walgreens, and Sally’s has been a rewarding experience. TGMS opened up more doors for me to pursue modeling opportunities.
As a result, I moved to Los Angeles last month! Since living here,
I’ve met amazing new friends who invited me to Lala Anthony’s ‘Full Court Life’ reality show premiere party at the Mark in LA.
The night started out with delicious drinks like signature cocktails named after Lala and Melo.The release party gave guests a sneak peak of Lala’s show which airs Mondays on VH1. Some of the celebrity guests were Serena Williams, Snoop Dogg, Hill Harper, Tyrese, Gabrielle Union and one celebrity that I had something in common with, Carmelo Anthony. As the one of the faces for Ultra Sheen, we immediately sparked up a conversation about our common ties with Johnson Products. Carmelo was very friendly and excited to share his details for his upcoming plans as the new face of the Ultra Sheen Men’s line. Then we snapped this photo!
Stay in touch with me on my journey at www.twitter.com/jahminahh or add me on Facebook: Jahminah Harris.”