Serena R. Gatlin is a Connecticut native and has worked in the fields of media, entertainment, and advocacy for over 15 years, however, it was her early life-experiences in the Foster Care System, becoming a teen mother and the struggles of being a Black woman, that sparked the manifestation of HER ZONE, INC. Serena is also heavily involved in several local and national organizations that advocate for the youth, young women, and the disadvantaged.
Serena serves on the Executive Board of the NABJ's Chapter-( SNEABJ) Southern New England Association of Black Journalist on the National Planning Committee of (WEEN) Women In Entertainment Empowerment Network since 2008, is a certified production crew member of Nutmeg Public Access Television, holds an FCC Amateur Radio Technicians License and co-hosted and produced "The Inner City Groove" on WVOF 88.5fm from 2007-2011, and has interviewed countless independent and notable artist in the music industry. Serena, is also a State of Connecticut Certified, Sexual Assault Advocate and Counselor volunteer, with (SACS) Sexual Assault Crisis Services partnered with the YWCA. In 2008 Serena became a mentor and Board member with GOODWorks, a nonprofit organization assisting and supporting women during and after their incarceration at York Correctional Institution in Connecticut.
Serena currently works at ESPN and spent eight years in Business Resources for Production Operations and Studio Directing and has transitioned her talent to Creative Studio. Serena is also on the Multicultural Women's Network committee with a very talented and diverse group of women, working, to drive-change for talent mobility by connecting, developing and elevating women-of-color across the ESPN and Disney platforms.
Serena will also create a scholarship fund to honor the legacy of her great, great grandfather, Connecticut native, Ellis Walter Ruley, to celebrate his creative-greatness, distinguished and global contributions to the education of the Arts, and to bring awareness to his unique story and the injustices, women, and men-of-color are subjected to today.
Claudette Robinson is a Canadian born Jamaican living in America and joins HER ZONE with over twenty years experience in Television Production and TV Production Management. Over the course of her career, Claudette was responsible for structuring, negotiating, evaluating and implementing a wide assortment of content deals for several Television stations in Jamaica and New York. She has lead Production teams on an assortment of shows most noteworthy are Jamaica 50 - A celebration of Jamaica’s Independence; Born to Run - A documentary on Jamaica’s Olympic athletes; the Sister to Sister Telethon - Fight Against Domestic Violence, and a series of vignettes for UNICEF during child's month. At present, Claudette is a Manager in Disney Media Entertainment Distribution at ESPN. In this role, she is tasked with coaching personnel, managing projects and designing workflows to ensure the most efficient provision and use of talent and facilities for partners in Programming and Production.
Claudette is no stranger to non-profit organizations and held many positions. A stroke of luck, fate or divine intervention prompted a meeting and then friendship with Serena Gatlin. Serena’s commitment to empowering young women is infectious, combined with Claudette’s passion for using education as a catalyst for change - she is ready for her new adventure - HER ZONE. Claudette is the mother of two adult-children, Brianna and Myles. She believes education is one gateway to success as such both are college educated and because she did not build a nest, but gave them wings to soar, they are blazing trails of their own.
Kimberly is a native of Boston, MA, and graduated from the University of Massachusetts/ Boston with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature. She also holds certifications in Radio/Television Broadcasting from the Connecticut School of Broadcasting and Fitness Training from the International Sports Science Association. Kimberly has 20 plus years of experience in Communications. She joined ESPN as a senior listings publicist responsible for maintaining the newly established media website and expanding the overall television guide lists for the network’s channels and supported developing visually appealing designs and presentations for the Communications group.
Kimberly is currently the Senior Photo Coordinator for ESPN Images, where she provides creative direction for domestic and international photo shoots for linear, radio, stock imagery, and company functions. Also, Kimberly generates publicity for ESPN’s “The Undefeated,” the digital hub that explores the intersections of race, sports, and culture. Her role at ESPN also includes working closely with some of the company’s leading storytellers for the intranet site and award-winning corporate blog. Kimberly currently serves on the Executive Board of the NABJ’s chapter-Southern New England Association of Black Journalists (SNEABJ) as a historian and publicist.
Brandy Tate was born and raised in Memphis Tennessee. Brandy is an alumni of Tennessee State University, and a committed member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Brandy has spent most of her career in the Media, Journalism and Broadcasting industry. Brandy has 20 years’ of experience in the television business which began in her hometown of Memphis sitting in the Director's chair at her local news station. Currently Brandy is a Director at ESPN where she directs content and productions for specific programming on ESPN's flagship show, Sports Center, along with College Football, WNBA Draft, Baseball Tonight and ABC Wraps to name a few.
Brandy is the current ERG( Employee Resource Group) Co-chair, focused on development advancement, mentoring and retention of Black/African American talent across ESPN and Disney. When Brandy is not directing or producing television, her other full time job is being a doting mother to her amazing son, Parker. Although Brandy’s schedule is full, she does not let that prevent her from volunteering on several committees in Hartford County, educating and empowering the youth and women through the power of her media talents.
A native of Hartford, Connecticut, Raven Reaves-Jackson is a multimedia journalist and digital marketer who graduated from Hampton University with a B.A. in journalism; and an area of emphasis in the School of Business. Raven was actively involved while attending undergrad. She was a member of various clubs, including the National Association of Black Journalists, American Marketing Association, Onyx 11 Community Service Committee, and an intern with the Homecoming Committee. Raven spent the majority of her free time in Virginia volunteering throughout the Hampton Roads community; she volunteered at the Boys & Girls Club of Newport News, the Peninsula FoodBank, and Phoebus High School. Her most memorable volunteer moment was when she was able to bring comfort and laughter to the hearts of many young girls at the Bloom Middle School Conference.
Raven first got her start in the entertainment industry as a college marketing representative for Sony Music. Additionally, in college, she participated in numerous internships and major-based extracurricular activities to broaden her journalistic and marketing skills. She was the web editor and contributing writer for The Hampton Script, promotions assistant for Entercom Norfolk, a social media intern for The BOSS Network a broadcaster for the Smooth 88.1 WHOV student newscast, a producer and technical crew member for Hampton University WHOV-TV newscast, a floor director and news intern for The Hampton Roads Show/Fox 43 Wavy-TV 10 News, a Hampton University Athletic Marketing team member, an AT&T Summer Learning Academy extern, and a contributing writer, interviewer, and social teams member for Hampton University's chapter of Her Campus. Currently, Raven is a social and digital brand creative for ViacomCBS, working directly with the shows department for MTV and VH1 brands.