Christelyn D. Karazin, Publisher, Editor-in-Chief

Christelyn Denise Karazin is the co-author of Swirling: How to Date, Mate and Relate, Mixing Race, Culture and CreedShe is also the co-host of Swirlr, the first multiracial, multicultural dating show. Karazin has appeared as an expert source on interracial dating and women’s and social issues on CNN, the Tom Joyner Morning Show, the Associated Press, Ebony, Essence, The Root, The Grio, Madame Noire, Chicago Sun-Times, Hello Beautiful, Huffington Post Live, NPR, NBC News, USA Today, and appeared in the Moguldom documentary, The Swirl, as an expert source.

Karazin has been a columnist for Madame Noire, and has been published in Better Homes & Gardens, Woman’s Day, Pregnancy magazine, and

Prior to magazine writing, she was a public relations professional who specialized in consumer and legal public relations, and represented such clients as Jenny McCarthy and Dr. Jay Gordon in their co-project regarding vaccinations, resulting in a prime placement on Larry King Live Show. Karazin has over ten years experience placing clients in television, radio, online and print publications, and has an uncanny talent for finding timely news angles to give her clients maximum exposure.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications, cum laude, from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Karazin is an active member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and lives in Southern California. She is, most importantly, a mother of four children–three of them biracial–and has been married to her husband, Michael, (who just happens to be white) for (almost) 13 happy, hectic years.

Contact Christelyn via email at ckarazin AT gmail DOT COM.

Jamila Akil, Senior Editor

Jamila Akil is a 20-something blogger and student living in the Midwest. She covers news, trends, politics, religion, black women’s empowerment, education and technology for Beyond Black & White. Jamila is working towards the completion of a Bachelor of Science in University Studies, a major she self-designed to include coursework across several academic disciplines.

Her personal interests include all things related to economics, politics, culture, and linguistics. You can find and friend Jamila on Facebook Feel like kvetching at her directly? She can be emailed at [email protected]


Tracy Renee Jones, Senior Contributing Writer

Tracy Renee Jones runs the blog, “Trippie Hippie,” and is the author of “Me Being Anonymous: A Book of Cursed Poems.”

Miss Jones is a 2005 cum laude graduate of New Jersey City University with a B.A. in Political Science and International Law with a PH.D in life experience.

She is a member of the Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science Honor Society. She also holds an A.A.S. in Legal Studies from Hudson County Community College where she graduated with honors in 2002. In 2007 she received an Advance Paralegal Certification in Intellectual Property from Wagner College.

TRJ is working toward becoming bi-coastal and thus she especially likes friends who have access to courtesy tickets on major airlines.


Toni Matthews, Senior Contributing Writer

Toni Matthews is a blogger in her late twenties who owns and operates, “Petals“, a black woman-centric site is dedicated to an honest examination of black women and the individual means by which they view and elect to better themselves. The focus the blog presently evolving in the direction of issues concerning black femininity and areas where it is believed the black woman’s right to femininity may be under attack. The aim is to encourage discussion on how some black women can re-claim lost femininity and recognize attempts to undermine the feminine virtue of black women.

In late spring of 2012, Toni will be graduating with a Master’s in Administration of Justice. Toni is in her free time a graphic designer and digital artist. She currently resides on the eastern coast of the United States, but plans to live and work abroad in the future.

A staunch individualist and political moderate, she may come across at times as absolutely blunt and ‘no-nonsense.’ Or she may come across as a budding comedienne. At the end of the day, whatever gets the point across is what matters most.


Demita Usher, Contributor, Etiquette and resident Miss Manners

Demita Usher is a writer, blogger and etiquette instructor who has written for Jones, Tightrope, Beauty Come Forth and LA Splash. A vintage enthusiast, she teaches etiquette and social graces in Southern California.

Emerald Lavender is a fashion, beauty and interior design writer with experience writing for magazines and websites. Namely, East Coast Home and Design Magazine, BET Centric, Mommy Noire, Upscale Magazine, Soul Train and J’Adore Magazine to name a few. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, she and her hubby Chris jet-setted to Northern Japan to live for 3 years. While there, Emerald taught English as a Second Language at a local Japanese school for ages Kindergarten through adult. She also learned how to make a mean bowl of chicken fried rice! An avid reader who loves pastel colors, self-help books, fruity lipgloss and sweets, you can find her pushing a jogging stroller with her 2 beautiful children complaining inside, Chloe and Drew. Check out her blissful and bubbly blog at Pink Balloons For Lunch, follow her on Twitter and like her page on Facebook and connect with her on LinkedIn!


Other phenomenal contributors:

Bob Wendorf (ChefBob), Food

Lorraine Nowlin (LorMarie), Politics, history, and BWE

Kevin Purcell, Resident humorist

“Friends of Jay”, Movies and media

Abiola Abrams, Sexuality