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Radio show host Cassandra Ferguson raises up others with her Elevation media brand

Cassandra Ferguson, radio show host and owner of Elevation Global Media Group in Towson, overcame a turbulent early life that has empowered her to elevate and inspire others.

“I was tired of seeing other women not motivating women,” Ferguson said. “So I decided to follow Gandhi’s quote, ‘Be the change you want to see in others,’ and I became that change for others.”

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The Harford County resident was born in Buckingham, Virginia. Ferguson’s father was a drug addict and beat her mother, she recalled. Eventually, her father was sent to prison for robbing a bank.

Her mom moved the family to Baltimore when Ferguson was 12 with a “desire to start a new life,” Ferguson said. Ferguson and her brother became latchkey kids, living in a single-parent home while their mother held four or five jobs at a time.

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“My childhood was actually very painful,” said Ferguson, 53. “Most of the time was spent visiting my father in prison.”

Ferguson said she carried that pain with her into adulthood until a sermon she heard from her pastor, Bishop Clifford M. Johnson of Mount Pleasant Church and Ministries in Baltimore, changed her perspective.

“I remember Bishop Johnson preached ‘Even if the person is no longer here, you should forgive them,’” said Ferguson. “I remember that Sunday. It was the day I really released my father.”

A month after graduating from Eastern High School, now closed, she married her husband of 35 years, Antonio Ferguson, whom she’d dated since she was 16. Around the same time, her father died of a drug overdose.

Ferguson and her husband moved to Harford County for his work and raised four children through the Harford County public school system, all now accomplished adults.

Ferguson has become business savvy and degree certified. She worked in the mortgage industry until the recession in the late 2000s, and in corporate compliance thereafter, but when she sought out other women as mentors, the response she received was unwelcoming.

She recalled reaching out to a woman at her church for encouragement, “and was shot down,” she said. Another woman she went to for support when she wanted to begin public speaking told her she “didn’t see it in me” and advised her to consider another career path.

“I needed support and mentorship, but I saw the truth that some women aren’t willing to share,” Ferguson said.

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Ferguson started a women’s networking group to motivate and encourage women, particularly young girls. She also founded the “Be Extraordinary Conference” to help young girls connect with women in leadership positions.

After the death of Freddie Gray in April 2015, Ferguson said she was disheartened watching the response. “When I saw the young people out in the streets uprising, I cried out to God and asked ‘Where are the leaders?’ and His answer was for me to step out and be that leader,” she said.

She approached the local Radio One office in Woodlawn and began hosting “The Cassandra Ferguson Show” on WOLB-AM every other Friday at 4 p.m. Six months later, they asked her to host a show on the network’s FM station, Praise 106.1, which became the “Elevation Talk Show.”

“I wanted to create a platform where leaders can come together and speak to the younger generation,” Ferguson said.

In a dream in early 2020, Ferguson said she saw herself sitting in an empty radio station and further on in the dream, she was elevated on a platform. That prompted her to give notice to the radio station in March, just days before the world shut down for the pandemic.

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Working a full-time job from home like everyone else, she started a livestreaming show, “Maintain Monday,” on Mondays at noon “because people still needed to hear encouragement, even if they’re home,” she said. “We needed to help people maintain through the pandemic, and we still are.” She’s had guests from all over the world, and now it’s featured on her own streaming radio network, Elevate Your Life Talk Radio.

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All of this prompted Ferguson to open her own business in May 2020 in Towson Commons. Elevation Global Media Group has studios for TV, livestreaming, podcasting and voice-overs. Her team, which includes interns from Towson and Morgan State universities, also offers media training, coaching and branding.

“Our mission is to help people make their ideas a reality,” said Ferguson. “Our place is for anyone who has a vision and a voice and needs to be in a creative space.”

Ferguson’s goal is to develop a community of creators — men and women — who can dream out loud and share resources with each other, and connect with people from around the world, in a creative and innovative space for development and expansion.

“When you are walking the walk, it’s easier to talk the talk,” Ferguson said.

Ferguson walks her mission in other ways. She serves on the Women in Leadership Advisory Council at George Washington University, recently launched Christian Women in Media’s Maryland chapter, wrote and published a book, “Dear Daughter,” and the follow-up book, “My Son,” is soon to publish.

“My mother eventually did some things to succeed in life, but the pain and trauma hindered her from living life to the fullest,” Ferguson recalled. “If God has given you a voice, use it.”


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