We had the good fortune of connecting with Frank Minikon and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Frank, what do you attribute your success to?
I think the most important factor behind our success is the ‘why’. We provide tools that impact children and how they view themselves. Far too long, we have not had the representation of people of color positively in the media (books, magazines, television, movies, etc.) As a company, we are taking on the task of balancing out the images with power and positivity. When children open a book published by Melanin Origins and see themselves, or read a story of a person who looks like them, they personalize it and they’re able to draw inspiration from it. That’s the beginning stages of channeling the greatness that lies within, and we overstand that it’s the success of our brand. We confidently ask the question “What’s your M.O.?”, because we are crystal clear about ours.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I have been in the criminal justice field for nearly 20 years. I began in the adult system, and eventually made my way to the juvenile division where I instantly felt at home, and felt I connected with my purpose. I’ve always been interested in working with kids in school because I saw the school was a pipeline to the criminal justice system. I never desired to work as a teacher, but in a liaison capacity. In my experience, I’ve worked in detention centers, intake division, court division, but I felt my most impactful position was when I worked in the alternative school as an administrator. I worked with the kids in the school environment, but also had the flexibility to work behind the scenes and address some other issues that contributed to conduct in school. I worked with the youth, families, schools, and the criminal justice system. It was truly a holistic wraparound approach, and as a professional I saw the rewards for my efforts. I am currently working in the courts division of the juvenile system. My purpose has progressed to having influence on defense attorneys, judges, and prosecutors as it relates to probation terms and prison sentences. The units I supervise work directly with this court workgroup as we continually address issues of disproportionate minority contact. This current COVID-19 pandemic that we are dealing with does not stop “some” from committing crimes in our communities, so the machine keeps on churning. We stand in the gaps to ensure fairness and impartiality to the best of our ability. My journey through the field has been challenging, but it has also helped me to elevate. There is no growth in the comfort zone, so going through the challenges allowed me to grow and expand my mind and my thinking. That expansion led to the opportunity to start the Global Publishing Services (Melanin Origins, LLC.) with my partner and CEO Louie McClain, and it also introduced me to other opportunities in media connecting with podcasters like Anthony Roberts with Robert’s Media Group and LaToya Smith with Strong Witness and LCS Counseling Services. Finding my voice in that realm has provided me opportunities to expand the brand of Melanin Origins as well. I’ve learned so much along the way, but one lesson that was important in my growth and development was the consumption of information. I read a lot, and mostly for my own self development. I have so many mentors out there that I haven’t met yet! We can all draw something valuable from an unlimited supply of sources. The beauty of it is we all have access to the information, we just have to seek it, hunt it down. My PSA to the people is this: “Do not limit yourself to one thing.” The world will tell you what you cannot do, but you must look within. I’ve had people tell me since I went the education/employee route, that I cannot transition to being a business owner. I’ve had people also say since our company is focused on children that I cannot have a podcast where we discuss adult topics and situations. Both are false!! We can be whatever and whoever we decide to be for ourselves, and that is what enhances the world as a whole. It’s all about adding value, whatever that looks like for each individual.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m definitely more of a homebody than one that is out and about. Me and my peoples normally visit one another’s houses (pre-COVID-19) hang out, play cards and socialize that way. I would say Texas has a lot of restaurants! Mexican, Homestyle, breakfast, soul food, vegan, you name it! We frequent places like Papadeaux’s for food and drinks, or Texas Live in Arlington for some games if we’re feeling it. I’m not opposed to finding the nearest food trucks for viddles either! Dallas Farmer’s Market always has the dope vegan/vegetarian options to choose from. I enjoy places like Deep Ellum and Lower Greenville and anywhere the artsy people congregate. I enjoy people, but I also love my peace. The openness of places like Klyde Warren in Dallas and River Legacy Park in Arlington help balance and center me around others and in nature.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I first want to shout out my family! They are always supportive of my endeavors and encourage me to go beyond. My beautiful children were also motivating factors in my drive to create a new world for them. As they achieve academically, and learn more about their history through our conversations, books we read, or documentaries we watch, their development as people continues to energize me to progress and elevate! Shout outs to everyone that has supported Melanin Origins by buying a book, purchasing a curriculum, liking, sharing, and commenting on a social media post. Big shouts to all the podcasts and magazine interviewers who saw the value in our company, and shared the information with their audience. And the BIGGEST shout out to CEO Louie McClain, who saw me as a viable and valuable asset to the company’s growth and success!

Website: www.melaninorigins.com
Instagram: @_thafranchize_ @melaninorigins.com
Linkedin: Frank Minikon, Jr.
Facebook: Frank Minikon
Youtube: Melanin Origins

Other: I’ve gotten heavy in the podcast game recently so I’d like people to check out some shows I’ve been a part of and others I’ve been a heavy contributor: @tharealityis: Anthony Roberts and Artesia Swindle operate the Dallas based Roberts Media Group and I’ve been a guest on many of their shows over the past 2 years.  We recently embarked on a new partnership where I will be a co-host for their upcoming season. This podcast is where ‘filtering becomes extinct’ so if you’ve not for open, transparent, and mature dialogue, keep swiping. @glounge111: This podcast is for the 40 and older age group. We have important discussions about life after 40, relationship discussions, health, money, and all other challenges the grown and sexy population deals with. The host Gina Humber and myself wrestle these topics, and occasionally bring on a guest to share their expertise.  We’ve interviewed therapists and authors to the World’s Greatest Entertainer Doug E. Fresh.  @quadpodcast: I was previously a co-host under the umbrella of Roberts Media Group. Myself and two hosts Ashli Nicole and Absolutely Adia conducted interviews with artists, DJs, actors, and other local talents in the Dallas area. All podcasts can be found on Instagram.