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Barbranda Lumpkins Walls


Barbranda Walls is a features editor for AARP Media who spotlights everyday people doing exceptional things. These folks might not make national news, but they deserve a shout-out. She loves pop culture – especially food, fashion, television and R&B music. Family, friends and spirituality play important roles in my life. And traffic.

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Barbranda Lumpkins Walls'sPosts

The Weather Watcher Who Has Seen It All

Posted on 08/8/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

Bulletin Today | Your LifeAt 101, Richard G. Hendrickson is no weather wimp. He’s been reporting temperatures and conditions to the National Weather Service from his family farm on Long Island in Bridgehampton, N.Y., for 84 years — rain, shine, sleet or snow. For his faithful service, the National Weather Service recently honored Hendrickson as the nation’s longest-serving volunteer weather observer. A new 80-year service award has been named in his honor. >> Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter  “I don’t think I …

University Prez Gives Up Salary to Aid Low-Wage Workers

Posted on 08/6/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

Bulletin Today | WorkRaymond Burse believes in spreading the wealth. The interim president of Kentucky State University is giving up more than $90,000 of his annual salary to boost pay for the school’s minimum-wage employees. “This is not a publicity stunt,” Burse told the Lexington Herald-Leader. “You don’t give up $90,000 for publicity. I did this for the people. This is something I’ve been thinking about from the very beginning.” Thanks to Burse’s generosity, lower-paid workers will immediately see more money in their …

George Takei’s Take on Hiroshima, From Devastation to Rebirth

Posted on 08/4/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

TechnologyMany people know George Takei as Mr. Sulu from TV’s popular Star Trek and most recently as a social media guru and host of the AARP-produced YouTube series “Takei’s Take.” But the Los Angeles native also has ties to Japan, where he lost an aunt and a cousin after the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, wiping out the port city on Aug. 6, 1945. Eight years old at the time, Takei was incarcerated with his parents and …

Grace Lee Boggs: Still a Revolutionary at Age 99

Posted on 06/27/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

Bulletin Today | Your LifeAt 99, Grace Lee Boggs is rather matter-of-fact when you ask her about aging:  “It’s like preparing for disability,” she deadpans. “You have a lot of time to think and a lot to think about. I have reflected more on particular episodes of my life than I ever thought I would.” Boggs has had quite a life to reflect on. The story of the erudite daughter of Chinese immigrants who morphed into a civil rights and black power activist in …

‘Older Ladies’: A Viral Video You Don’t Want to Miss

Posted on 06/26/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

Bulletin Today | Your LifeDonnalou Stevens can’t believe her good fortune. What started out as a little ditty she wrote and sang with a bunch of girlfriends at a party is gathering steam as a joyful anthem for women who embrace their aging bodies. Her country-themed “Older Ladies” video has gone viral, garnering more than 2 million hits since posted in early June. Shot by film student Christine McHugh and backed up by other mature women, Stevens gleefully strums a guitar and sings lyrics …

She Might Be (Healthy) Soul Food’s Biggest Champion

Posted on 06/18/2014 by |Best Life | Comments

Bulletin Today | Your LifeIf you’re celebrating National Soul Food Month and Juneteenth this month, you’re probably well acquainted with crispy fried chicken, ham hock–laden collard greens, smothered pork chops and gooey macaroni and cheese. But what about wheat sautéed tilapia salad, grilled salmon cake panini, black-eyed pea dip and roasted green beans? In the eyes of restaurateur Vonda McPherson, that’s soul food, too. The chef and owner of Vonda’s Kitchen in Newark, N.J., is on a mission to make fresh and organic a …