Alexis Wise and the Wise Girls recently presented their first fashion show, “An Evening of Fashion Expressions” on Saturday, March 1.
The show was a fundraiser held at the Hannah Gallery in Marin City. It was a packed house at the gallery, with many community leaders attending the event.
Pasha Lord was Mistress of Ceremonies. Twenty-five men, women and children modeled over 100 fashion pieces from three designers: Julie Tanner, Couture Wear from Valerie Cotton, and originals from Vera Burch.
Lea Mixon, Kenya Roary and Avossia Agbonkonkon – three members of the Wise Girls – read from their original “Spoken Word.” Beverly Freeman, Kelly Thomas, Pasha Lord, and Madeline Freeman and a member of the Wise Girls sang a song.
Several Wise Girls also helped with a PowerPoint presentation, program direction, food prep and ushering. Mario B (Benton), Oakland-based producer of the show, helped to direct the event.
Wise was inspired in 2007 to begin working with youth in Marin City. She began volunteering for The Hannah project with Bettie Hodges, who became Wise’s personal and spiritual mentor.
In 2010, Wise founded and current directs Wise Choices for Girls, a Marin City based mentoring group for teen girls from 13 to18 years of age.
Wise Choices meets at the Hannah Gallery three times per week and some weekends. The Wise in the name also stands for Wisdom, Integrity, Service and Education. The group encourages girls to make wise choices.
Members of Wise Girls include Lea M. (president), Ayana M. (vice-president), Linh H. (treasurer), Kenya R., Princella A., Destiny B., Tami S., Xanat R. and Madeline C.
Wise Girls serves girls living Marin City, Corte Madera and Novato. Members attend tutoring programs at The Hannah Project and Bridge the Gap in Marin City. They learn about themselves, their peers, community and about self-esteem and respecting others.
Serving the community is important to The Wise Girls, as they strive to improve their economic situations and to inform the community about healthier food choices.
The Wise Girls attended the Woman’s Commission Teen Girls Conference as Ambassadors. They also participated with 10,000 Degrees, a group that supports student access to higher education.
Organizations that have partnered with Wise Girls include the Marin City Community Services District, the Marin City Recreation Center, the Marin County Youth Leadership Institute, and the Marin chapter of Friday Night Live, an organization which helps youth develop in a positively and healthy way and helps them become leaders.
Johnathan Logan, Paul Aston, Terri Green, and Felecia Gaston, along with other community members, have also supported Wise Choices for Girls.