Back in America

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September 29, 2020  

Derrick Cobb - From New York Homeless Teen to Hollywood Music Star

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The podcast is an edited version of the first live interview of the podcast Back in America. 


The original can be seen on the Podcast YouTube or FaceBook page.


My guest is a model, a dancer, a singer, and an incredible performer. Look him up on Spotify or wherever you listen to your music and you will understand why he is such a rising star in this industry.


Getting where he is today has been a long and challenging journey. A Journey that started in New York with a drug addict father and abusive stepfather. A journey that took him through homeless shelters and psych wards. Despite the pain and humiliation he somehow managed to make it to school, to rehearsals, and to castings. His determination and hard work paid off. 


The Alvin Ailey Theater hired him to do a series of recitals. He won a modeling contract for 7 for Mankind and for Marc Jacob, which lead to his now 8th year as a  professional model. 

While working as a dancer and a model in New York City, He teamed up with Nate Beats, and D.Gatez, who produced and released his early singles. 


Now living in Los Angeles he is working with Grammy award-winning producer Ebonie Smith. He’s recording his latest music at Atlantic Records and Warner Music studios. He was even invited to become a member of the Recording Academy and is now recognized by the Grammy Board as a recording professional.


Derrick Cobb can be found:

September 23, 2020  

Dr. Glenda Wrenn on COVID, Remote work, Mental Health & Corporate America

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"COVID-19 has created a worldwide public health crisis, and the resulting lockdowns and social distancing measures have sent most country’s economies into a severe downturn. But we believe these crises are only the tip of the pandemic’s iceberg," writes Mario Iacobacci and Mathieu Laberge in a recent Deloitte study.
"There is another crisis looming – a human crisis," they add.  "Our past research ... has revealed a potential for increased incidences of mental illness, poorer educational outcomes, an increase in substance abuse and crime, and the weakening of the community fabric."
The researchers called on the governments to get ready for the looming crisis. It is particularly striking that they stressed the need for employers to address employees' mental health, reviewing the mix of employee benefits and to see how to better accommodate employees in this stressful period, sometimes by introducing flexible benefit options that respond to different needs from employees at different stages in life. 

Since 1989 in France, employers must 1989 ensure the physical and mental well being of their employees. This is in line with the European tradition of social class differences and community solidarity. 
The American tradition is influenced by the like of Locke, Jefferson, Smith, and Mill, and favors individual freedom and economic freedom.

In the US, a country of hard work, individualism, and personal privacy culture, many corporations are hesitant to tackle employees well being.

Indeed, The COVID-19 pandemic has deeply impacted our lives as families sheltered in place and juggled homeschooling, work from home together with keeping their household afloat. According to a poll conducted in mid-July, by non-profit 
Kaiser Family Foundation 53% of adults in the United States reported that their mental health has been negatively impacted due to worry and stress over the coronavirus. This is significantly higher than the 32% reported in March.

In this episode of Back in America: corporate America, COVID and Employees well being, or lack of.

Back In America speaks with Glenda Wrenn a psychiatrist, chief medical officer for Franklin, Tenn.-based 180 Health Partners, and previously the founding director of the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity in the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine.

"I think we are addicted to working in our culture," said Glenda Wrenn. "it is promoted by our work environments. What is the incentive for your employer to get you to slow down? You're rewarded for working more. I know this from personal experience as a true recovering workaholic. I love working. I do. I really love working. And it has been such a process for me to redirect that energy to my home. The same excellence that I put into doing mental health policy work, now I'm just redirecting it at home. I'm giving it to myself and my family. I was honestly incapable of doing that before this pandemic."

Glenda's Book Recommendation

A People's History of the United States 
by Howard Zinn 

Between the World and Me
by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Across That Bridge: A Vision for Change and the Future of America
by John Lewis


Read the transcript

September 12, 2020  

Don’t miss the two live interviews on Sept. 14 and 16th

Monday at 3 pm EST with Derrick Cobb a singer, model, and performer.

Wednesday at 1 pm EST Majid M. Padellan known on Twitter as @BrooklynDad_Defiant!. Majid who has over 260K followers is an anti-Trump political commentator.

The event will be streaming live from Linkedin, Twitter, and the podcast Facebook page.


Facebook @backinamerica.podcast

Twitter @Back_in_America

Linkedin @Berteloot



September 4, 2020  

Part 2/2 - Eric Marsh, Black Activist on the George Floyd’s Mural


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Back in America is a podcast exploring America's culture, values, and identity.

After my interview with Cadex Herrera a lead artist of the memorial mural of George Floyd in Minneapolis, I asked Eric Marsh a Black community leader and activist in Philadelphia what he thought of controversy around the mural.

Some black activists, including Keno Evol, the executive director of Black Table Arts, have voiced their concern about the fact that Black artists had not been invited to participate in the mural creation. 

September 4, 2020  

Part 1/2 - Cadex Herrera Lead Artist of George Floyd’s Mural


Back in America is a podcast exploring America's culture, values, and identity.

The death of George Floyd, a black man killed by a Minneapolis police officer has triggered protests against police brutality, police racism, and lack of police accountability. Three days after Floyd's death a group of artists painted a mural on the Cup Foods building at the corner where George Floyd was killed on May 25. 
The artists started at about 7 a.m. on May 28 and finished the mural at  5:30 p.m. the same day. 


Most of us have seen an image of the mural since almost every American TV station live-streamed the George Floyd funeral whose backdrop was a digital version of this mural.
Inspired by this work, artists across the globe started producing similar tributes to George Floyd, and a digital database of such art has gathered a repository of 1324 pieces of art so far.

In this episode, I speak with Cadex Herrera a co-artist behind this iconic memorial mural of George Floyd. Cadex immigrated to the United States from Belize when he was 19. Today at 45, he works as an elementary school behavioral specialist and social justice art is his passion.

Cadex can be found on Instagram 
His website is

He recommended the following book and movies:

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez 

The Platform


Episode's Transcript

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