RWS 2021 FEATURED SPEAKERS
Epiphany "Big Piph" Morrow
Epiphany "Big Piph" Morrow is the “Hip-Hop Community Builder”.
A Stanford-educated emcee and a proud product of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Big Piph is a creative to the core. Morrow performs regularly with his 7-piece band, “Tomorrow Maybe”, and has worked with several major industry acts.
Epiphany served as the lead coordinator of Global Kids-Arkansas which sent stellar high school students in underserved communities abroad for social service projects. He also has been a TEDx speaker and perhaps most notably served as a “Cultural Ambassador” traveling abroad for work in countries such as Morocco, Algeria, The Gambia, Seychelles, Myanmar, Thailand, and more.
One of Big Piph's current projects is The F.A.M. Project which empowers future leaders to become present ones.
He also had a one-man show entitled “The Glow”, described as if “TED Talks were a Hip-Hop concert wrapped in an OG Spike Lee narrative” that is now a digital series with Arkansas PBS.
Photo Courtesy Tatjana Ring
JESSICA N ROBERTS
Jessica Roberts was raised in a two-parent home. She is the middle child of three (two sisters) and grew up in a middle-class household. Her mother and father both worked outside of the home, which afforded the family a comfortable lifestyle.
Her parents were committed to their children and instilled in them the concepts of high morals, values, independence, responsibility, and a strong/firm work ethic.
Prior to October 2007 (the whole drug conspiracy ordeal), the author’s life was happy. She was a proud and responsible first-time mom to her beautiful little girl. She was also gainfully employed at a well-known Company.
With only three weeks away from graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Human Resource Management (she was unable to complete due to being arrested and sentenced to prison), Jessica was on the fast track to success having landed an interview for a higher salaried government contract position due to take place once she returned from the court (again, this didn’t happen because of being sentenced to jail and prison).
The author cites her role in the drug conspiracy case and the subsequent indictment was due to her relationship with her daughter’s father and the people with whom he associated.
The criminal case that Jessica was part of consisted of a 38-person indictment with her being number 38. According to her hired attorney, she wasn’t granted an evidentiary hearing because there was no evidence against her. Her entire involvement in the case hinged on the DEA thinking she knew something but wasn’t telling it.
Having had no prior criminal record, the entire ordeal was emotionally and physically traumatic. Jessica’s life took a complete turn away from the direction in which she was headed.
In short, a once-promising life was now reduced to a ten-year federal prison sentence. Thankfully, after unimaginable judicial system torture and lies, she was actually sentenced to 27 months in a Federal Prison Camp, 5 years of probation, and a $5,000 fine.
By God’s grace and her morally sound upbringing, the experience made her better not bitter. The road to piecing her life back together hasn’t been easy but she continues to accomplish her goals.
(Read more about Jessica and her accomplishments on her website.)
Speak On It Facebook: @speakonitwithJessicaNicole
"Now that I have the benefit of age, experience, and wisdom, I can see how the things I went through has shaped the woman I am now. The dreams and goals I have now were not the dreams I started out with. My love and my choices left me facing a ten-year prison sentence! In spite of my choices and what I thought I wanted for my life, my dreams took a different turn. My new dreams have been directly influenced by the direction my life took. Coincidence? Read my story and then you can decide."