Munson Steed, model Bria Myles and Laz Alonso

Being the best you can be starts with you realizing your identity and knowing exactly who you are. Will you shine so you believe that you really and truly are a star? Are you willing to put in the work so that your dreams and ideas will carry you far? The evolution of someone great is for those coaches and teachers who eye the distinguishing marks of success ingrained in discipline, study and an earnest try.

To know a young man who respects his mother enough not to have her traipsing down to the jail to visit him in a cell. He spares her the emotional purgatory of that living hell. Laz Alonso demonstrates those qualities that an African American male ought to. He was destined for greatness, and he is well on his way.

What many people close their eyes to about everyday life, is the fact that there is always some level of strife. Whether it is psychological, physical, social or emotional, we will react in a preconceived manner to the notion.

But Laz didn’t allow doubt or adversity to creep in and stop him in motion. To understand that your presence is required in this space, doesn’t obligate you to participate in the nonsense of the rat race. It does require critical thinking and a grasp on priorities in either case. Building a track record of checks in the win column is preferred and understood, and far too many brothers have embraced apathy when it comes to them and the ‘hood.

From Jay-Z to Beyoncé, few are striving to return to the start, instead they are trying to live and achieve lifestyles that are off the chart. They are aspiring higher, to excel, achieve and acquire. This was obvious when I met Laz that day. Many may not remember him from his Wall Street days, and his working his way up the ladder of success through to BET and the morning show. But he was there with Bob Johnson taking him to the side, and conversing with Debra Lee to determine what next he would decide.

Association is what many of us don’t understand from day-to-day, we waste our time with the nonsense of gossipers and hate mongers, and allow them to broadcast their negativity in a particularly foul and destructive way. Laz, instead, was putting up the wins starting with BET. From there if you heard him, you’d know he made his foray into music, too.

He was developing the skill set to reinvent himself and emerge anew. His discipline paid off, because he realized that he had to be ready for change and be prepared to move, and plan long range. So by jet plane, a car or a train you see, Laz decided California, Hollywood was the place to be. Geographical changes may be required to move ahead. Laz moved to Hollywood to grow as a professional actor and success has come his way. From the small screen to major productions, he made the transition almost seamlessly. But had he not been a fair and kind person, it might not have come to be. He might not have landed the role in Avatar, and have it propel his image around the world in places near and far. Or if you’d seen him in Jarhead, or acting in one of Tyler Perry’s Madea flicks, you’d know he’s moving up quickly.

So fast-forward to him moving on, and gracing the ro cover today. Laz is a young man who continues to work hard and is motivated that way. He works out, takes care of himself and keeps temptations at bey. He’s bilingual and that’s just an indication of how he strives to be the best, and stands head and shoulders above the rest. When you look to the stars and you wonder how far they have come, you’ll find it’s been a long road, indeed. Laz was not an overnight success, but he was in the right places when he needed to be. Obviously, he’s struck a chord with the public and the studios who pay him to stay.

So as you look to brothers and sisters to admire, watch Laz Alonso’s star rise, as he continues his trek toward the skies. He gets the industry and he’s here to stay. I am proud of Laz and young brothers like him that work to deliver every time. Keep pressing forward with your head up and continue the climb.
Peace. –munson steed