Kendrick, Erika J. 1974-
Kendrick, Erika J. 1974-
Born May 19, 1974, in Chicago, IL; daughter of Benjamin and Estaleta Kendrick. Education: Stanford University, B.A., 1996; University of Illinois at Chicago, M.B.A., 2002.
Office—Erika Benjamin, Inc., 561 10th Ave., Ste. 42F, New York, NY 10036. E-mail—[email protected]
J Records, marketer and promoter, 2002; Island Def Jam (record company), marketing and sales executive, 2002-03; Apollo Theater, New York, NY, marketing and production executive, 2004; Erika Benjamin, Inc., New York, NY, president. Worked at Ogilvy PR Worldwide. Host of Girltalk (weekly online radio show). Worked as a professional NBA cheerleader for the Chicago Bulls' Luvabulls team, 1998-99.
National Association of Black Female Executives in Music and Entertainment (president of New York chapter), National Association of Black Journalists, National Black MBA Association, Delta Sigma Theta, Stanford Alumni Association, Stanford Black Alumni Association.
Exceptional Women in Business award, 2004.
Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader (novel), One World/Ballantine Books (New York, NY), 2007.
Also author of the blog E-listed with Erika!
To a résumé that already includes such positions as music industry executive, marketing and promotions expert, television producer, radio broadcaster, and professional cheerleader, Erika J. Kendrick adds first-time novelist with her book Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader. Kendrick was a cheerleader with the Lovabulls, the cheerleading squad for the Chicago Bulls basketball team. She draws on this experience and on her background in the music industry to form the substance of her debut novel.
Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader tells the story of Hannah Love, a twenty-eight-year-old New Yorker transplanted to Chicago to work a coveted job at Rock-Star Records. Everything seems to be perfect for Hannah in her new life in Chicago, including her dream job, wonderful apartment, and handsome fiancé. Soon, however, her world is rocked when she discovers her man cheating. To help recover from the emotional trauma, she decides to act on a dream: to become a professional cheerleader for the Chicago Diamonds basketball team. She easily makes the team, but her presence there is resented by the other cheerleaders, who try to sabotage her performances, humiliate her in public, and force her to resign. Her personal life also becomes complicated when she finds herself being pursued by Elijah Strong, her desirable boss. Even more problematic is the fact that she finds herself falling for Max Knight, the star player on the Diamonds team, even though players and cheerleaders are strictly forbidden to date. A Publishers Weekly reviewer reported that "snappy dialogue and steamy love scenes fuel the buildup to a bombastic ending that will satisfy" fans of romance and chick lit alike.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Contemporary Black Biography, Volume 57, Thomson Gale (Detroit, MI), 2007.
BlackBeat, February, 2007, review of Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader.
Publishers Weekly, November 27, 2006, review of Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader, p. 31.
Upscale, February, 2007, review of Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader.
AOL Black Voices,http://www.blackvoices.aol.com/ (August 24, 2007), interview with author.
Black Athlete Sports Network,http://www.blackathlete.net/ (April 1, 2007), Tony McClean, review of Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader.
Erika J. Kendrick Home Page,http://www.erikakendrick.com (June 14, 2007).
Erika J. Kendrick Myspace Page,http://www.myspace.com/erikabenjamin (August 24, 2007).
Imprint Agency Web site,http://www.imprintagency.com/ (June 14, 2007), brief biography of Erika J. Kendrick.
Random House Web site,http://www.randomhouse.com/ (June 14, 2007), brief biography of Erika J. Kendrick.