Posted by: Ted Davix
Images by: McDonald’s Magic City Classic presented by Coca-Cola
Dee Reed is an attractive fire cracker of energy and road marker of inspiration as seen in posts on her highly entertaining Instagram profile, and one of the major players in the production of the always exciting Magic City Classic. As an employee of the Alabama Sports Foundation, her job is to help organize the components of the event in such a way that the stellar production that you see, which is ripe with snares and snags in planning, appears not as it is but as what you see and enjoy. She gave MCR the privilege of talking to her about her role in Classic production and her love of historically black colleges and their mission to the community and the world.
MCR: What is the mission of the Alabama Sports foundation in the production of the Magic City Classic? You do work for ASF, right?
DR: “I actually work for its event management division, Bruno Event Team, who has handled production of the game and related events for over ten years. We organize all of the events of the Classic, the logistics of the ancillary events (those leading up to the game) to the game itself to some post game events.
I started in radio, which prepared me for this job from a Public Relations standpoint because of all the work I did with the public”.
MCR: What do you do specifically?
DR: I work on the logistical components of the production of the game and its related events, securing vendors, sponsorship, and cementing all of the ancillary components of the events. Today I’ll lead a walk-through with all of the participants of Alabama State and Alabama A&M to discuss needs and concerns, ensure proper flow of events, and to make sure that the participants are comfortable with all of the elements of the events”.
MCR: What are some personal benefits of having attended an HBCU? You attended A&M, right?
DR: “I attended Miles College. The greatest benefit of attending an HBCU is the rich lifelong relationships that you can form with professors, faculty, and other students. You can foster these relationships for the rest of your life in the form of friendships, brother and sister hood, and networks which can help propel you to the places that you have the potential to go. The faculty and staff really want to you to succeed while in school, and once you graduate and will do anything they can to help you get where you want to go.
I got a job because a former professor had a personal relationship with a prospective employer, and his referral cemented my candidacy”.
MCR: I recently wrote a piece which details the impact that the Magic City Classic has on all of greater Birmingham, but more especially on its African American community. In it I say that one of the greatest impacts that the events have on the city is that its youth sees men and women, graduates and burgeoning graduates shopping, milling about, organizing, and plain having fun as a result of some of the wealth that they’ve attained as a result of the educations at HBCU’s.
It serves as an example that they can do the same and more. What is your personal impact on the city’s youth?
DR: “The other thing I love about HBCU’s is that their graduates REALLY love their schools and the experiences they gained while in attendance, and they give back to communities by mentoring younger people to help them achieve their dreams, supporting them financially, spiritually, and physically in every way that they can. That means everything, especially to successive generations of young black men and women.
The examples of highly successful attendee/graduates like comedian Rickey Smiley, world renowned musician and UAB educator Dr. Henry Panion, and former NFL legend John Stallworth are just some examples of the success the HBCU and State and A&M attendance has spurred. I do my part by helping to organize this magnificent event”.
MCR: What will you be doing Classic weekend? What events are special to you?
DR: “All of them (laughing)! I’ll be attending practically every event leading up to the game and the game itself! There is a Thursday, October 27 luncheon for alumni of both schools, a scholarship event to benefit students and prospective students at both, the Classic Pep Rally, and concerts to attend, among everything else. I’m looking forward to it all”.
MCR: How can you be reached?
DR: “Those interested in the Magic City Classic can find it on Facebook at Magic City Classic and on Twitter @magiccityclassic”.
MCR: Thank you, Dee.
DR: My pleasure.
For a complete list of all related events see www.magiccityclassic.com.