About the Founder: Kenn I. Hicks, LCSW
CEO/Executive Director and Co-Founder Ballin’ For Peace/New Social Worker’s Founder
Founder and Visionary, Kenn I. Hicks, known as the “Godfather of Street Ball,” is the force behind Ballin’ For Peace’s vision to unite people in the community and entertain the crowds. It was his concept to use basketball as a powerful and compelling medium that brings people from diverse neighborhoods together in a setting where almost instantly they are open to receiving important information on health, employment and educational resources.
Kenn Hicks has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology from Winston Salem State University in North Carolina, and a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Kentucky. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and an Approved/Certified Domestic Violence Counselor. In 2008 Kenn Hicks was inducted into the University of Kentucky, School of Social Work “Hall of Fame” for his efforts to reduce domestic violence and dating violence. His featured articles have been well received throughout California for many years. Based on decades of client-centered research, his writings explain his concepts of decreasing violence in the home and community. The senior Mr. Hicks has appeared on television and talk-radio programs, and has been featured in many newspaper articles for his holistic approach to domestic violence and teen/adult/elderly dating violence prevention.
Kenn Hicks has lectured throughout the United States on domestic violence prevention and the book he authored, Eleven Building Blocks of Domestic Violence Prevention (Download A Free Book). This book was written for victims, batterers/abusers, and family members who are continually subjected to domestic violence and dating violence. The senior Mr. Hicks has received highly commendable reviews for this book as well as for his development of an innovative program, Boot Camp for Batterers. The theme for the Boot Camp is “Rehabilitation Through Realization of the Victims Devastation.”
Kenn Hicks has been an invited guest speaker at colleges/universities such as Tennessee State, Kansas Wesleyan University, Cal State Northridge and Mission College. He has also lecturered at community agencies/organizations, hospitals, churches, and various treatment programs as well as for public institutions such as the Los Angeles County Grand Jury. Mr. Hicks has addressed high schools on topics such as violence in schools, gangs, drugs, school safety. During high school speaking engagements, Mr Hicks is sometimes accompanied by a female colleague who speaks to young ladies about the same topics in the same school.
For more than twenty-eight years, Kenn Hicks and the New Social Workers have hosted basketball tournaments and leagues throughout Los Angeles County. The Venice Beach Outdoor Basketball Championship Tournament was launched by the New Social Workers in 1981 and ran for more than 20 years. It became one of the most popular outdoor summer basketball tournaments in the nation. Players from all over the United States and other countries participated in this annual event. Many NBA Players such as Kobe Bryant and Gilbert Arenas played in the tournament before playing in the NBA. During its heyday, the Venice Beach Tournament received extensive news coverage by several media outlets, including television, radio, nationally published magazines such as Slam, and newspapers nationwide. Spectators, players, and journalists all agreed it was a great success.
Today, Kenn Hicks is actively involved in helping communities become safe from gang activity and crime through his involvement with Ballin For Peace’-New Social Workers and his private consultant work. He is the co-architect of the Ballin For Peace’ Violence Prevention Initiative, a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary, and socially relevant intervention designed to reduce poor citizenship, lower the school dropout rate, halt gang activity, and minimize crime in Los Angeles over the next decade and beyond. Drawing on the proven talents of leaders from varied fields of expertise, this integrative initiative will be expanded as the funding and assistance to Ballin For Peace’-New Social Workers increase. Kenn Hicks was awarded Certificate of Appreciation from The Mayor of Los Angeles in August 2008.
About the Director of Program Operations and Co-Founder Ryan Hicks
Ryan Hicks, a California native, is a graduate of Kansas Wesleyan University where he earned a B.A. in Communications. As the Co-Founder/Producer of Ballin’ For Peace, he is committed to ensuring that our organization effectively catapults its community of kids and youth into successively higher levels of success. His passion is to create a safe and fun community for all ages. Ryan Hicks was awarded Certificate of Appreciation from Mayor of Los Angeles in August 2008.
Executive Director to create and administer the Ballin’ For Peace program. He develops and implements all guidelines and policies with the purpose of ensuring compliance with all government regulations, as well as maintaining alignment with the New Social Worker’s mission. He monitors the effectiveness of the program, making adjustments as needed. Human resources duties, such as the recruitment and training of employees, also fall under the program director’s list of responsibilities.
Our Program Director also has the unique position as Marketing Director as well. His role in marketing involves promotions of events through media, flyers, agency collaborations, and small community networks.
The Program Coordinator coordinates activities and functions of the designated program, Ballin’ For Peace to ensure that goals and objectives specified for the program are accomplished in accordance with established priorities, time limitations, funding limitations or other specifications.
Connecting people through the web! (Article) – http://www.examiner.com/web-2-0-in-los-angeles/ballin-for-peace-uses-web-2-0-to-gain-support
About the Director of Marketing – Sista Asia Wildenboer
Sista Asia Wildenboer is a legend in the music industry. From styling, to promoting, to catering, she has touched all facets of the industry. Her strong presence has been felt in all aspects of the hip-hop world. Sista Asia has been called the “Renaissance Woman of hip-hop.” Her passion and admiration for hip-hop has helped her to accomplish groundbreaking and inspirational creations in the industry.
Sista Asia was born in Indonesia and lived part of her life in Amsterdam, at age 13, settling in the United States. Living abroad has added to the unique flavor that she brings to the music world. Sista Asia has styled some of the most influential names in the industry, such as WuTang Clan, Cyprus Hill, The Roots, Boot Camp, Flip Mode, MOP, Dead Prez, The Pharcyde The Liks, and Tupac. Sista Asia had the honor of working as an assistant to Jeanee Saenez, stylist to Priority Records.
Sista Asia’s enthusiasm for hip-hop also led her down the road of music promotion. She was a promoter for Club Unity, the biggest hip-hop club in the early 90’s, and helped catapult the club to legendary status.
Sista Asia has experience in the film industry. She is a graduate of Dov Simens Film School and has extensive experience on movie sets. She had the honor to work with such influential directors as Spike Lee, Hype Williams, and Dave Myers. She also worked as 2nd assistant director for Noa’s Music Video, an artist signed to Tommy Boy Records. She also wrote many treatments for music videos. These various experiences have helped her to acquire a deep appreciation for the production of film and music videos.
Sista Asia is a piece of hip-hop history and her strong passion for quality music is her inspiration to keep the original, classic hip-hop vibe alive. She continues to spread and teach the beautiful and inspirational messages that this style of music has to offer. She has nfluenced many hip hop artist to spread the Ballin’ for Peace Movement.
Sharon Batts is owner and President of KIASHA (Kingdom Insured Ambassadors Saved Hopeful AnointedTM) Entertainment LLC, a Christian Entertainment
KIASHA Entertainment in collaboration with EWB Entertainment and NuFavour Ministries produced the 3rd Annual Northern California 3-Day No Weapon Youth Fest held August 16 through August 18 2007 in Sacramento California.
About the Director of Community Relations/Programming Quenton L. Bowman Sr.
Quenton L. Bowman Sr. is one of few who connects to everyone through his colorful vision. Born in Philadelphia, Pa, Quenton L Bowman Sr. continues to be the people’s champ by being a positive influence in his, and many other communities by connecting and unifying the dreams and possibilities of today’s youth.
After graduating from high school, Quenton L. Bowman Sr. joined the United States Marines for 8 honorable years before being discharged. It was here that honor, courage, and commitment was instilled along with discipline, exceptional communication skills, and a passionate sense of urgency. While stationed at Camp Pendleton in California, Quenton L. Bowman Sr. began to venture out into the streets of Los Angeles because of its lively hip hop culture to hone his microphone skills and met several idividuals who put him in direct contact with some powerful people in the entertainment industry. It was there and then that the love for Marketing and Branding was born. While leading and participating in some unique marketing campaigns, Quenton L. Bowman Sr. met Mr. Ryan Hicks, who is the executive director of “Ballin for Peace”, a non profit organization based in Los Angeles that encourages at risk youth to shoot a basketball instead of a gun. Upon returning back home to Philadelphia Quenton L. Bowman Sr. recognized the dire need for the expansion of “Ballin For Peace” to the city of Philadelphia due to the rapid increase of inner city violence, and city wide school closings. Quenton L Bowman reached out to Mr Ryan Hicks and together they developed a strategy to successfully bring “Ballin For Peace” not only to Philadelphia but to the entire east coast.
Quenton L Bowman Sr. continues to motivate and elevate the consciousness of at risk inner city youth and encourage them to strive for success thru the many faces of adversity. His energy and enthusiasm allows for his dedication to the cause, to be the fuel on the path to world peace.
Download: Ballin’ for Peace Comic Book