Gene pool 

As this incredible year comes to an end, I find that its triumphs and overwhelming tragedy have created a new spiritual awakening in me. My senses have become more fine-tuned, and I now approach each day as if it were a major adventure. This year I celebrated my 40th birthday and continue to delight that I am frequently required to show my I.D. before I can enter clubs. (I thank my grandmother for excellent genes!)

This year offered me the opportunity to broaden my scope as an artist, art educator, businessperson and community activist. I embrace this challenge without hesitation. I do not feel that I am wearing many hats, only one. My being a candidate for Detroit City Council puzzled many skeptics who didn’t understand why I would seek an office without major endorsements or money. As an activist for the Detroit community, I knew that I was making the right decision in running for office. With lots of prayer and support from my family, friends, the art community and a donated school bus, I was in the top 50 after the primary. I extend a multitude of thanks to those who voted for me.

My other life as an educator keeps me close to young people who supply me with info on the hippest gear, dances, footwear, video geeks, hip-hop artists, sports and animation in the city. They bring me joy.

The art world of fellow artists, clients, curators, gallerists and art writers has increased my scholarship in the quest for continuity between art and viewer.

From the catastrophic images of Sept. 11 and national mourning, the me became we. The picture is larger as we are thrust into a new reality.

This is my 40th year. My true mentor is my mom, whose strength, encouragement and vision have placed me here.

I am thankful for my life. Painter Jocelyn Rainey directs the JRainey Gallery in Eastern

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