This site was initially created for the purpose of work and career. But there came a point where I began to appreciate that my life isn't only that. I don't expect industry professionals to log onto this page. It is most dearly for those who know me personally, maybe even know my family, and therefore have some interest in their well-being. Though all are welcomed.
The Brown clan is large and diverse, and splits so many ways that the family tree resembles more of a banyan than an oak.
First giving honor to those who are no longer with us, my mother Martha Brown Hicks was a force to be reckoned with, who devoted her entire life to city government and local politics, toward revitalizing the Skid Row area of Los Angeles, and helping the homeless. She served on various commissions under both the Hon. Tom Bradley and the Hon. Richard Riordan, before retiring in 1994. She passed away in 2002 from a stroke. And my dear departed stepfather Fred Hicks was one of the gentlest souls I've ever encountered. He spent his entire life in civil service, working as a paramedic for the Los Angeles Fire Department, before his retirement in 1982. He died from pancreatic cancer in 1998. And both Martha and Fred remain lights that will always burn bright in our family.
My only niece, Dr. Chippewa Thomas, of Tuskegee, Alabama, has been holding powerful court as a professor in the department of special education, rehabilitation and counseling at Auburn University. I am incredibly proud to announce that she has received tenure, and is now an Associate Professor. She is also now a regular visitor to the countries of Cuba, Malawi, and Tanzania (where she was born) to participate in an outreach program associated with Auburn U.
Sister Pam Brown of Atlanta, Georgia, has just begun a new and exciting chapter in her life, retiring after 27 years at IBM. The horizon is spread wide, just waiting for her to reach out and pick a direction for the next great adventure. She is living in her dream house, a fabulous spread of digs that I had the pleasure to visit for the first time a few Christmases ago. Her home is an Architectural Digest wonder, reflecting an elegance, class, and extraordinary aesthetic that she no doubt got form our dear mother, who was always the epitome of taste with a penchant for design. Pam passionately collects art and artifacts to keep creating stunning statements of beauty in her home.
Brother Michael Brown (for whom I wrote the song An Old Black Man Someday) has been honored by the city of Los Angeles for nearly three decades of devoted volunteer service to the Department of Parks and Recreations, as a Little League coach. AND...his team just won the championship. He is making a difference in the lives of young inner city boys.
Brother Arman Brown has just started his career as a licensed nurse, after graduating from Cal State Fullerton. That he has chosen nursing as his calling couldn't thrill me more, and he has already begun field work in hospitals and schools.
Brother Andrew Brown has wholly immersed himself in the area of body-mind-spirit, conscious living, self-discovery, and the spiritual and wellness arts. We may have a future Deepak on our hands! For certain, I believe he is a healer in the Shamanistic sense of the word. He is most definitely connected to something deeper and higher.
My father, the acclaimed artist Ted Brown, who has created works and portraitures for President Clinton, the NASA space program (for which he was known for his photo-like renderings), and national ad agencies, and whose portrait of Martin Luther King Jr. hung on every wall across America a few decades ago, has long since been retired. But before doing so, he designed the graphic layout for my CD The Slow Club, and I was absolutely thrilled to finally collaborate with the great lion. Here's just a sampling of his amazing work.
The Art of Ted
And he isn't the only creative one in the family. Step-mom Afi Brown continues to create elegant gift baskets for her company Afi's Gifts.
If you're interested in a basket, send Afi an email @ AFIBRN@ROADRUNNER.COM. She'll be happy to show you a catalog.
A few birthdays ago now, The Brown Family celebrated a much anticipated extravaganza for patriarch Ted Brown's 80th birthday! Eternally youthful AND buoyant, he got to have a grand party with a live band, much dancing, much laughter, too much food and drink, people from every walk of Ted's life, all convening to celebrate his milestone. There was also the reunion of family (my sister and niece flew in from Georgia and Alabama respectively) who hadn't seen each other in years, which did all our hearts GOOD!
Here's a little tribute video that was made in honor of the big day, and of the beautiful legacy that is Ted's life. And also a capturing of the Main Event itself!
Ted Brown's 80th Birthday Tribute
This past summer, on Fourth of July weekend, The Shepards (my mother's side) once again hosted our family reunion in St. Louis, MO, assembling together five generations of family from all over the U.S. and even as far away as China. I wasn't able to attend this one, but did attend the last one (for my first time), and I remember it as such an extraordinary experience, communing with family, most of whom I'd either not seen since childhood, or had never met. And since that time, those who'd been new in my life, have now become a great, intimate part of my Facebook life, and we keep our connections regular. There's something to be said for the Book of Face, after all!
From the deepest center of my heart, I am honored to be a part of this family, both my immediate and my extended, the Browns and the Shepards, and I thank you for spending time on this page.
Angela Carole Brown : FAMILY NEWS : writer/vocalist/artist