Charlie Rocket is a photographer, public speaker and cosplay personality. She has been cosplaying for almost 6 years and has created nearly 200 costumes in that time! She has also been a guest at over 20 conventions including Wizard World, Supercon, and Super Smash Con.Charlie uses her platform to speak on important topics such as diversity, body image and mental health. Her goal is to create a more accepting community with more representation in all of the fandoms we love!
Mel is a cosplayer from Washington, DC who has been cosplaying since 2013. He specializes in armored projects using EVA foam and advanced lighting and programming. His Commander Shepard cosplay has been featured by BioWare’s official social media accounts and his Samus cosplay won the cosplay contest at Super Smash Con, one of the biggest Smash Bros gaming tournaments in the world. He has also completed builds from Halo Reach, Batman Arkham Knight, One Punch Man, and My Hero Academia.
Mel strongly believes in using the art of cosplay to give back to the community. He routinely volunteers at children’s hospitals cosplaying as either Spider-Man or Nightwing, and any proceeds made from conventions are donated to charities that specialize in suicide prevention.
Mel is excited to be guesting at the first ever HBCU con and is thrilled to meet everyone!
Greg Burnham is the Comic/Children’s Book co-creator and co-writer of Tuskegee Heirs. With other titles such as The Search For Sadiqah, Broken Glass, and Grandpa’s Shoes, Greg continues to create diverse stories for everyone to enjoy. You Can find Greg at @Greg_Burnham7, @TuskegeeHeirs and @TheSearchforSadiqah on IG. And Greg Burnham, Tuskegee Heirs and The Search For Sadiqah on FB.
Tranquil Ashes is a multi-talented artist who has distinguished herself as a make-up artist, body painter, organizer, and cosplayer who specializes in both sewing and armor builds. Tranquil brings a unique set of skills and experiences from growing up in Baltimore to spending several years in Japan. She is a champion of body-positivism, creator of brave geek spaces such as the CosGala, and all around magical muse.
Tranquil has been cosplaying for 6 years and in that time has been recognized by AfroPunk, Black Nerd Problems, Sy-Fy for the panel held at New York City comic con. She also creates content for Quirktastic, Nerds of Color and have guested at several cons and events
Tranquil is excited to be a guest at the first ever HBCU con.
Cree Michelle Rogers, or Brown.Suga.Outlaw on Instagram and Facebook, is a cosplayer based in Savannah, Ga. She attended Savannah State University and it was there that she met her amazing cosplay team, The UsualRangers5, with whom she managed to be on the cover of the Washington Post Magazine!
Her and her team were also invited out to San Diego Comic Con to meet the lead costume designer for Marvel’s Black Panther, Ruth Carter, and the rest of the costume design team for their group cosplay of the Black Panther Crew! Her most recent accomplishments include winning 4th place at the Hi-Rez expo and being bumped up to the Master’s division to win 2nd place in the Dreamhack cosplay contest! She hopes that through cosplay she can encourage other young nerds of color to embrace themselves and not feel as though they have to be in a box of what it means to be their ethnicity.
Black Crystal Cosplay is a DMV native who has been cosplaying for more than three years. She is notorious for her immaculate wig styling, cosmetic makeup and special effects make-up designs. Black Crystal knows how to have fun but also dedicates a portion of her time conducting panels and live chats at the intersection of cosplay and social issues. She plans to one day open up a cosplay summer camp for youth to keep the positive energy going!
Panama Jackson is a professional black person, award-winning writer and co-founder and Senior Editor of the award-winning website, VerySmartBrothas (a vertical of TheRoot.com), cited as “the blackest place on the internet” by the Washington Post. He’s a regularly featured speaker on issues relating to the race, pop culture, general blackness, and hip-hop.
His biggest accomplishment to date coincides with his Blackest accomplishment to date in that he received a phone call from Oprah Winfrey after she read one of his pieces (biggest) but he didn’t answer the phone because the caller ID said “Unknown” (Blackest). He is a graduate of both Morehouse College (B.A. Economics) and the University of Maryland-College Park’s School of Public Policy (M.P.A.), and resides in Washington, DC, with his family.
Venture Bros is a Captain in the United States Air Force who graduated from Hampton University. Venture founded the Chicago POC (people of color) Cosplayers group to bring cosplayers of color together in his hometown. This award-winning cosplayer only does he build armor, he has become a skilled wig maker for afrocentric hair types ranging from coils, dreadlocks, box braids, and afros in all colors and sizes. He was inspired to cosplay while stationed in Japan for 9 months.
Venture won best cosplayer at the Toyz and Cosplay convention in Chicago in 2019! Venture is also a member of Costumers with a Cause having gone to the Shriners hospital and St. Judes hospital to cosplay for children who have been admitted. Venture has become a rising force to be reckoned with in just 3 years.
Venture is very humbled and thankful for being a guest at HBCU con.
Chris C., better known by his entertainment name DJ TaylorSenpai, has established himself as the premier go to for Nerd themed parties and events. TaylorSenpai was born in Washington, DC and developed an ear for music at the young age of 13. As a child growing up in the 90’s and 00’s, he grew to love Hip-Hop, R&B, Go-Go, and many other styles of music. He is also an avid Anime fan and (Video) Gamer.DJ TaylorSenpai learned the importance of versatility and being able to cater to any crowd as he DJ’d in the D.C. area; spinning everything from Electro House, Trap, Hip-Hop, Dancehall and K-Pop.
DJ TaylorSenpai has performed at major convention afterparties under SONICBOOMBOX and various nightclubs in DC, MD, VA, NYC, and ATL. He has been the Resident DJ for Blerdcon for 4 years and is also currently a featured DJ for SONICBOOMBOX.
Roquois is an international Singer – Songwriter – Superhero!
Singer for her powerhouse vocals & love of music. Songwriter for her love of lyricism and ability to transform her experiences and pure emotion into song. Superhero? Well, Roquois’ love of cosplay and nerd culture speaks for itself. Performances, cosplays, uplifting music… everything is Plus Ultra!
As a Singer & Songwriter Roquois has been blessed to perform overseas and also work with talented musicians with Sony, Def Jam, Universal and more! She was also featured on Trina’s latest album and had her music featured on the hit series Orange is the New Black. Roquois is an avid cosplayer and loves all things geek chic who plans to utilize her talents to fuse her love of music and geek fandom to break barriers and have mainstream representation for nerds in music.
Morgan State Alum, Jason Torres is a Writer/Producer and the Associate Director of Development at Complex [Magazine]. His credits include: Viceland’s Desus & Mero, Michael Moore’s TV Nation, The Carbonaro Effect, Charlamagne & Friends and Cipha Sounds: What’s Your Thing? He’s produced content for BET, MTV, MTV2, Fuse, Viceland, truTV and more. Jason is passionate about comics, music, comedy, and pop culture.
Mathan Erhardt is a Morgan State University alumnus and six-time (6) Emmy nominated writer. He has earned an Emmy award for his work on the hit political comedy show Full Frontal With Samantha Bee.
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