Black Girls Rock! 2017 | What It Means To Be A Shot Caller: A Poem To Suzanne Shank

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NEW YORK - APRIL 15:  Bill Thompson, New York City Comptroller and Suzanne Shank pose for a photo on the red carpet at the 12th annual Keepers Of The Dream Awards at the Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers on April 15, 2010 in New York City.  (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images)

Black Girls Rock! 2017 | What It Means To Be A Shot Caller: A Poem To Suzanne Shank

A poem dedicated to Wall Street maven Suzanne Shank.

Published July 24, 2017


Glass ceilings — there are

many — so when the young

woman smiles curiously as

imagination runs freely

those who tunneled before

can’t help but say,

but baby, it’s dark in there


During the time when she

was proven to excel at three,

society reflected its mirror

onto little black girls — there’s

never been one of your kind to be…

and so we have our hidden figures

because greatness always finds its shot

callers, even when they have to move

behind society’s dark curtain


We celebrate Suzanne Shank,

the first black woman to head

a one billion dollar financial institution


We celebrate Suzanne Shank,

the shot caller who moves openly

and carries baggage light

enough to embrace change


We celebrate Suzanne Shank,

the powerhouse mom, CEO, and

board member who leans back to lift up others


See, when glass ceilings are shattered,

it’s easy for those behind to step on

shards as they tunnel through — Suzanne Shank

has returned with her broom and dust pan

to sweep up sharps left behind and to lend

advice that is sure to show return


Major in the minority, her legacy screams

never stop moving those feet on the pedal

teach your sister to speak for herself

know what you know

invest in you today

be a shot caller

Written by Flose Boursiquot



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