A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, TORRENCE BRANNON-REESE (Torre`) is a true Renaissance man, artist extraordinaire, Torrence is an educator, poet, and writer who founded the Foundation for Arts, Mentoring, Leadership and Innovation, aka, FA-MLI, Inc., a recognized 501 © (3) nonprofit agency providing life enrichment and mentoring programs for at risk youth. He also started (2010) the annual I’ve Known Rivers Film Festival of arts, culture and education, and the Leimert Park Black Arts classic Photo series, which recognizes the lives and contributions of musicians, artists and residents who are deserving of honor.
Blessed with an amazing, four octave vocal range, Torrence is leader of his dynamic band, Everything with Soul, who recently (April, 2017) headlined the Barbara Morrison Jazz Festival in Leimert Park Black Arts Village. Torrence has performed alongside artists such as Stevie Wonder, the Neville Brothers, the Chi Lites the Impressions the Delfonics, Blue Magic, the Temprees, Jerry Butler, Lakeside, Horace Tapscott, Billy Higgins, Linda Hopkins, Gerald Wilson, Dwight Trible, Teena Marie, Vi Redd, Kamau Daa’ood, Barbara Morrison, Buddy Collette, the Temptations, Kool & the Gang, Jay Leno, Nancy Wilson and many more.
A concerned youth advocate in the city of Los Angeles, Torre` created two gender specific mentoring programs/Life Skills Mastery programs for youth, “See A Man, Be A Man” and “Princess 2 Queen”, which has positively impacted the lives of thousands of youth and young adults over the past twenty years.
Torre` is a published writer, poet, ex-amateur boxer, guitarist, music historian, festival, concert and conference producer, television host and producer, stage mc/host, and is one of Black Los Angeles most respected community advocates/leaders. He is the recipient of numerous local, regional and national awards including recognition as one of the Who’s Who in Black Los Angeles, 2009 until the present, and was recently installed (September 15, 2017) as one of the architects of the 50 year history of Los Angeles Southwest Community College.
Torrence earned his AA in Political Science & Music from Los Angeles Southwest Community College in 1990, his BA in Communications and Africana studies from Cal State University Dominguez Hills (1992) and obtained his (MSW) Master of Social Work from USC (May, 2017).
A vegetarian who believes in taking care of his temple, Torre` is most proud of his role as a single father to his four daughters, and loves his five grandchildren. He lives in Los Angeles historic Leimert Park Black Arts Village and credits his mother Gwendolyn, as the single most influential person in his life.
Facebook at Torrence Brannon-Reese or visit the FAMLI website, www.famlisoul.org
YEHUDAH PRYCE graduated Summa Cum Laude from Adams State University, earning his Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with an emphasis in Social Welfare in 2019; he earned his Master of Social Work at the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work in December 2020 where he was the Chair of Unchained Scholars; and he is now working toward a Doctor of Social Work degree at Simmons University. He is a social worker for the Young Adult Court in Orange County, a psychotherapist at the residential addiction treatment center Beit T’Shuvah, and a formerly incarcerated community member who was released in October of 2018 after serving over 16 years in prison for a non-violent robbery that he was arrested for as a teenager.