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Meet our 2024 Future History Makers!



Martina Barksdale – Director of Communications, VisitLex 

Martina Barksdale is a multimedia maven and is currently the Director of Communications for VisitLEX and was formerly the executive producer/TV host for Everyday Kentucky on WKYT.

A graduate of the New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts. While in New York, she worked as a Host/Producer for Big Review TV and has worked as an actress in TV shows, web series, films, and off-Broadway plays. One of the feature films she was in won the Louisville International Film Festival 2018 & and was screened at the Cannes Film Festival 2019.

Once she moved back to Lexington in 2018, she started a food blog and show called The Sit-in where she shined a light on minority talent, specifically black people in Lexington. She also worked for the Cincinnati Reds as a Game-day Host/Correspondent.

Before moving back to Lexington in August 2021 she was a Host/Producer for Lifestyle Programming at WLBT (NBC affiliate) in Jackson, Mississippi. Currently, she is a co-founder of Soulfeast Week: Celebrating the Black Culinary experience, a Black Restaurant week paired with curated events happening for the fourth year this June.

She’s a huge foodie and enjoys getting the scoop on all the latest foods, drinks, events & and music while continuing to uplift the Black community and move the needle forward.



Major Herron, aka Sensei Nowa – CEO & Founder, The Hip Hop Fraternity Kentucky

Sensei Nowa is  a key figure and visionary in Kentucky’s music industry shaping the future of hip-hop and R&B. As the founder of Kentucky HipHop Day, he has created a platform that elevates the state’s musical talent and celebrates the vibrant culture of hip-hop.

His dual role as an artist and A&R for Universal Music Group/Virgin Music, has seen him market notable artists like French Montana, Toosii, and Sauce Walka, leading to millions of streams and significant chart presence for Kentucky artists. His local and global influence in scouting and nurturing talent is unparalleled, as he continues to guide the music industry with his expertise. Additionally, Sensei has signed two promising local artists to Universal Music Group. **Anonimuss Rose**, an R&B artist hailing from Lexington, Kentucky, and. **JB Savage** from Danville, Kentucky, a rapper with raw energy and authenticity. Both artists represent the future of music and stand as a testament to Sensei Nowa’s commitment to discovering and elevating homegrown talent.

As the **CEO of the HipHop Fraternity Kentucky Chapter**, with national leadership from icons like Ice-T, Boosie BadAzz, and Freeway Rick Ross, Sensei Nowa is at the forefront of promoting hip-hop culture and supporting the artistic community in Kentucky. He is also a co-owner of **Rise The Mag Brand**, a diverse enterprise that includes a digital magazine, photography services, and the only storefront recording studio in Kentucky’s capital.