Ernest Comer III

Ernest Comer III is a community relations professional with several years of experience working with non-profit organizations. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Minnesota in Communication Studies with an emphasis in African and African American Studies. Ernest is a proud member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated and has held positions of leadership in organizations such as PRISM at the University of Minnesota, and emerging non-profit in Ramsey County, Re-Armor Homes. He has been an adolescent mentor in the Pediatrics Department at the U and has hosted local television and radio shows showcasing young talent.

Posts about Advice

Proverbial Monday: Keep It In The Family

Posted by: Ernest Comer III Updated: March 25, 2013 - 8:02 AM

 

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Every week we'll start off with our "highs and lows" and get into some important societal survival skills and general goings on of the TwinCities and neighboring communities with news about the rest of the world here and there. Participation is simple. Just give us your highs and lows either in the comments of the article or on twitter by trending #ProverbialMonday or tweeting to me @ProverbTribune.

High: Making lots of great interpersonal connections recently

Low: Missing my family during some work-related travel

***Keep It In The Family***

Allow me to begin this post with an apology as I see myself as one of the greatest transgressors for this familial malfeasance. With some critical reflection I've come to the understanding that it's hipocritical and irresponsible of me to engage the work that I do with knowledge and insight that I have gained throughout my career without offering those same resources to my own family. The passion and dedication that we bring to our careers should be reflected in the way we interact with and uplift our families and community. While my work is primarily in community engagement there is a portion of the community that I serve missing out on my presence and my intentional effort to build and strengthen. Far too often it requires a call or visit from a relative for me to even share a moment of time with them rather than me reaching out to better understand how I can be of service to the family that raised me.

O.W. Gurley & J.B. Stradford founded the Greenwood neighborhood in Tulsa, OK better known as Black Wallstreet with the purchase of over 120 acres of land and the notion that "people had a better chance of economic progress if they pooled their resources, worked together and supported each other's businesses". This concept of interdependence and mutual investment led to the development of a thriving and self-sustaining community. Why then have so few adopted or replicated this model especially in Black communities and Black families. I regularly come across examples of families who don't celebrate eachother with reunions and even more who intentionally choose not to invest in the businesses and professional endeavors of relatives. In fact, the expectation is often that goods and services provided by relatives should be distributed to family members for free upon any and every request.

Maybe, if we invest more in our families we can practice what it would look like to invest in our communities and we  can all learn to see how we might together be able to develop thriving families and communities that are self-sustaining.

 

More info on Greenwood in Tulsa, OK:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenwood,_Tulsa,_Oklahoma#.22The_Black_Wall_Street.22

Proverbial Monday: Silver Bullet

Posted by: Ernest Comer III Updated: February 20, 2013 - 8:22 PM

 

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Happy President's Day!

Every week we'll start off with our "highs and lows" and get into some important societal survival skills and general goings on of the TwinCities and neighboring communities with news about the rest of the world here and there. Participation is simple. Just give us your highs and lows either in the comments of the article or on twitter by trending #ProverbialMonday or tweeting to me @ProverbTribune.

High: Definitely making progress in my career.

Low: My patience is thinning..

***Silver Bullet***

People who work in the social sector often talk about how the issues that we work to resolve are complex and how in many ways the resources we have are too limited to constitute a resolution. People will argue there’s no “silver bullet” to destroy these intricate systems of oppression. Let me correct them. We do have a silver bullet made of accountability & consistency. What’s required is accountability & consistency in collaborative efforts, in engaging communities and building on the assets and resources that exist there to develop sustainable change.

If we are talking about destroying a werewolf then we should know that it won’t be killed by the impact of the bullet but by the elements that it’s made of seeping into the bloodstream. That process requires time, a fourth dimension we tend to forget about.

Only a few understand that and maybe it seems implausible that we already have the answers to the problems we’re working to solve. Then again, some of the world’s greatest feats were accomplished by people not smart enough to know they were impossible.

Based on partnerships of mutual investment along with accountability & consistency powerful impact has been achieved and incredible changes have been made. We build relationships of mutual investment with community members because they are our neighbors, our friends, our partners in creating a better community where everyone has something of value to contribute. As soon as we begin to recognize the capacity of the tools that we have our efforts become unrelenting and change becomes inevitable.

 

Get Rich or Die Trying: I’d Rather Not

Posted by: Ernest Comer III Updated: February 12, 2013 - 9:35 PM

The idea that people should blindly pursue financial wealth even at the cost of life is the type of paradigm that makes the Black American Community this country’s greatest consumer and most impoverished demographic at the same time. Numerous caricatured examples in our media suggest that a fiscally superfluous lifestyle invites tribulation to a household. Translation: More money, more problems.

The glorification of money tangentially presented with messages that confuse spending money with making money create the space for a perfect storm to generate self-inflicted, self-sustained oppression.

Too many priorities fall in line before getting rich to die trying. Before getting rich I have the responsibility to survive or die trying, the responsibility to feed my family or die trying, and the responsibility to change systems of oppression in my community or die trying.

I’m not saying don’t think about money at all. Prioritizing obligations does not relieve you of the responsibility to manage personal finances.

I despise the question: “What if money was no object?” Even if we didn't have to worry about money most of us would still be doing what we are already doing. You naturally do what you love for free because you love to do it ... sometimes we even pay to do what we love so that part is covered. Don't think about what you would do for free because that makes you forget that you already do.

Instead, think about what you do for fun. What's your favorite thing, your favorite place? What do you like to talk about? What do people say you talk too much about? What get's you fired up inside? Write it down and build something that includes all that you enjoy or as much as possible.

After that, when you focus on establishing goals, when you fix your vision to include the income that you desire and get real about developing a process to make your efforts fiscally productive than you set a path that you can follow. Think critically about what you love to do and identify concrete opportunities to yield income doing that. Take responsibility for the part that you play in your success.

Proverbial Monday: Waiting

Posted by: Ernest Comer III Updated: January 14, 2013 - 3:52 PM

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Happy New Year! #ProverbialMonday:

Every week we'll start off with our "highs and lows" and get into some important societal survival skills and general goings on of the TwinCities and neighboring communities with news about the rest of the world here and there. Participation is simple. Just give us your highs and lows either in the comments of the article or on twitter by trending #ProverbialMonday or tweeting to me @ProverbTribune.

High: Tristen Royce Howard Comer (My Son). Yea, still..

Low: So much to do, so little time. Yes, still..lol

***Waiting***

I noticed today that we spend a lot of time waiting. a huge mistake too many of us make is waiting until a moment arrives that makes us feel as though we are ready for taking the next step in life. A next step toward marriage or toward parenthood, or toward success. I've determined, based on what I've seen so far that waiting until you feel ready means waiting for a lifetime. Looking back on the most satisfying moments of my life I find that in most cases it was due to the fact that I stepped into opportunties that presented themselves, ready or not. I would not suggest that waiting is useless. There are times that waiting is important, and I still believe patience is a virtue. I suggest that if you are only waiting for your mind to change on how you feel about an opportuntiy then you are wasting your time and the time of all those waiting in line behind you. Move.

Ambition

Posted by: Ernest Comer III Updated: January 7, 2013 - 7:49 AM

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Happy New Year! #ProverbialMonday:

Every week we'll start off with our "highs and lows" and get into some important societal survival skills and general goings on of the TwinCities and neighboring communities with news about the rest of the world here and there. Participation is simple. Just give us your highs and lows either in the comments of the article or on twitter by trending #ProverbialMonday or tweeting to me @ProverbTribune.

High: Tristen Royce Howard Comer (My Son)

Low: So much to do, so little time.

***Ambition***

A major barrier that often hinders us from acknowledging or even recognizing our success is an inability to articulate what we want on a core level. While we have some shallow vision of what seems like a nice lifestyle we forget to ask ourselves why and deeply, honestly audit the foundation of that vision. Once you have some idea what you want to achieve ask yourself why at least 3 times before taking pursuit to ensure that you are working toward acquiring whats at the root of your goal rather than acquiring the surface level things you presume you should have as someone who is successful. To get a clear vision of what success looks like for you then investigate why it looks that way will bring you to greater understanding of what you really want and will help guide your ambition. Ambition without guidance is a thirsty fish.

 

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