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Even the big guns fear Jamie Brown

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson is no shrinking violet. But he’s only half joking when he says he fears Jamie Foster Brown, his protégé who’s now a media phenomenon herself.

Johnson says fear is what spurs him to return Brown’s calls, seeing as how the publisher of Sister 2 Sister magazine dishes gossip on the black entertainment community. “I have a great deal of respect for Jamie,” he says, “as well as a healthy dose of fear.”

Johnson points out these marks of Brown’s leadership:

1. Tenacity. She started out as Johnson’s secretary, then learned how to shoot video, write scripts and become a producer before striking out on her own.

2. Curiosity. Brown “always had a question: Who is so-and-so? What is this about?” She wrote everything down on yellow legal pads and made it her business to understand.

3. Intestinal fortitude. Even when Johnson cracked the whip and asked “How did it happen that this video is 45 minutes short?” Brown kept her cool.

4. Flair. “Downtown Jamie Brown,” he says, “you always see things differently from everybody else.”

— From the 2004 Matrix awards, Association for Women in Communications, Washington, D.C.

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