February 2012: Madeline McCray
, is an author, actress, producer, healthy lifestyle activist, lifestyle and lifestyle transformation coach.
son Terahshea McCray, recently co-wrote the book Healthy Women Rock: How to Live the Life You Desire and Deserve, Lose Weight and Control Negative Thoughts.
Madeline began her show business career at the Henry Street Settlement in New York City.
It was while there studying that she
and a group of her
fellow actors founded the OLAC Ensemble
The company performed at various underground venues around the city.
Each experience fueled McCray's ambition and broadened her
interests in writing and producing.
At Albany, New York Capitol Repertory Theatre, McCray co-starred opposite Emmy nominated actor John Amos in August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Fences.
Director Seret Scott says, "I have directed Madeline in two very different pieces and I am proud to have been a collaborator with such an extraordinary actress."
At BACA Downtown-Brooklyn, McCray
played Mrs. Smith, a blind army wife in Imperceptible Mutabilities of the Third Kingdom, a play written by Pulitzer Prize-winner Suzan-Lori Parks.
Her work in this production prompted one critic to write: "McCray's Mrs. Smith was played with dynamic simplicity and a remarkably believable blindness" while director, Liz Diamond described Madeline
as, "a brave, disciplined and inventive actor.
, wrote and produced A Dream To Fly: The Bessie Coleman Story, a solo play based on the life of the first female Black pilot in the world.
performances at colleges and conferences around the country are hailed as, "An extraordinarily powerful portrayal of the human spirit...", "Electrifying, spellbinding and very moving".
Amos writes, "The life Madeline
breathes into the world's first female Black aviator is tangible.
also blazed a trail for the popular reggae group, Midnite
As manager she
secured engagements and toured with the group throughout the US as well as Namibia, South Africa.
She later moved to the Virgin Islands where she founded the non-profit performing arts organization, St. Croix Center Stage.
leadership the organization produced two international theatre festivals.
producer credit includes: Amos' critically acclaimed one man play, Halley's Comet and Their Voices Their Stories documentary highlighting the experiences of a group of African American WWII veterans who served on Iwo Jima.
the Mentor Madeline was born and raised in Harlem by her
single mother Gertrude, a fiercely proud woman.
was 14 years of age when her
mother died suddenly of an asthma induced heart attack.
From that moment forward, Madeline
chose to live life on her
refers to her
one night jail stay as a youthful misstep that was not to be repeated.
ran the streets, married young, produced two beautiful sons young, escaped a drug world unscathed and survived domestic violence young.
Whether mentoring gang members, or victims of rape and abuse, McCray's message is consistent "In order to create a better future you must BELIEVE you deserve one."
is the proud and devoted mother to sons, Uhuru and Terahshea, and NaneMa to grands Khalil, Nadir, Minkhara, Elijah and Kyla Arianna.