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Leaders Of Transformation | Conscious Business | Global Transformation | Leadership Development

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Jul 29, 2019

A.J. Ali is the Director and Producer of WALKING WHILE BLACK: L.O.V.E. Is The Answer, an award-winning feature-length documentary film improving relations between police and people of color. He coined the acronym L.O.V.E. which stands for:

  • Learn about your community
  • Open your heart to the people in it
  • Volunteer yourself to be part of the solution in their lives and
  • Empower others to do the same.

The film won Best Documentary and Audience Favorite at the Garifuna International Film Festival in Los Angeles, California and A.J. was awarded the Platinum Award by the NAACP in Howard County, MD for Contributions to the Community Through the Arts & Entertainment. A.J. is also the Creator, Producer and Host of Wellness 101, a TV game show based in Santa Monica, California.

His first film, “Positive Choice,” is credited with saving the national youth soccer program “Soccer in the Streets” from extinction. He was the Creator, Producer and Star of “Good Fellas of Baltimore,” which aired on Fox 45 TV in the Baltimore market. He has produced, written and/or appeared in numerous TV shows, films, commercials and PSA’s.

He's a 2019 BMe Vanguard Social Determinants Of Health Fellow, a member of L.A. County District Attorney Jackie Lacey’s Community Justice Panel and an active member of ACTS Church in Santa Monica, California. He is a service-disabled veteran who served honorably in the United States Air Force from 1983 to 1987 as a Journalist and Media Relations Specialist.

After experiencing racial profiling by several law enforcement officers in Howard County, MD, A.J. made it his mission to bring awareness and reconciliation between law enforcement and people of color.

In addition to directing and producing the film, WALKING WHILE BLACK: L.O.V.E. Is The Answer, A.J. and his team facilitate L.O.V.E. Is The Answer workshops across the country, and have named September 17, 2019 as the Inaugural National Day Of Reconciliation in the U.S.A.

In his conversation with us, A.J. sheds light on the everyday issues facing the black community and what we can do to bring an end to the racial profiling and stereotypes that have caused so much tragedy and division in this country. A.J. demonstrates that L.O.V.E. is truly the answer and invites us into the possibility of healing and reconciliation, one community at a time.

Key Takeaways

  1. If you’re white in America, you can choose whether to engage on matters of race. You don’t have to have ‘the talk’ with your kids about how to engage police officers.
  2. If you’re black in America, the issue of race comes up every single day. We have to be literate in another language almost – the language of race.
  3. Whenever there is a divide between people, love is always the answer.
  4. Reconciliation takes time but it is possible.
  5. As a nation we need more civility – where we allow people to mess up, and we are there to help them up and show them a different way.
  6. Watch the film. Invite some people over to your house for lunch/dinner and watch the film together.

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