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Swem celebrates women's history month

  • Women in hip-hop
    Women in hip-hop  Left to right: Cymandye Russell, Mz Meka and M$ Blendz attend last year's hip-hop event at Swem Library.  Courtesy photo
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William & Mary’s Swem Library is marking Women’s History Month with an event March 20 celebrating women in hip-hop. The highlight of the evening will be two panel discussions featuring local women in the Virginia music business.

The “Women in Hip-Hop: Third Annual William & Mary Hip-Hop Collection Celebration” will include an art exhibition by local artists Asa Jackson, Brennan Crick and Mustafa Malik Shabazz, blog rooms, a DJ, refreshments a networking station and more.

The event will take place in the library’s Botetourt Theatre and Gallery, ground floor, 5-7:30 p.m. The reception will be held 5-6 p.m. with the panel discussions beginning at 6 p.m.

The panels will be moderated by Cat Robinson of The Vadio Show. The first panel will feature Dominique Da Diva, radio personality from 106.5 The Beat and 103 Jamz; M$ Blendz, Blendzville Global CEO; Rachael Faunce, community and media relations professional; DJ Dirty Di of WLAB Radio; and DJ Erika B of Beatminerz Radio.

The second panel will feature Desiree Williams, hip-hop artist manager; Marquita “Ms. Hollywood” Childress, model with Core Model Worldwide; LaShawn Shellma, singer/songwriter and member of music group Sista; hip-hop artist Abys; and Yomashei, hair braider to Pusha T and Allen Iverson.

During the event, the library will honor Cymandye “Lady C” Russell for her contributions to the Virginia hip-hop community and her support of the W&M Hip-Hop Collection. Russell is an on-air personality with WNSB Hot 91.1, a blogger for and owner of Art Riche, a design company.

The event is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the faculty/staff lots behind the library and in the parking garage on Ukrop Way. Parking passes are not required on Friday after 5 p.m. Attendees are asked to RSVP to