Beyoncé BeyGood Grant Recipient Kimberly McGlonn on Her Favorite Philly Places and Things

Through her West Philly upcycled clothing brand Grant Blvd, she advocates for sustainability and decarceration.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Grant Blvd founder Kimberly McGlonn. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

English teacher turned Jenkintown borough Councilwoman Kimberly McGlonn advocates for sustainability and decarceration through her West Philly-based upcycled clothing brand Grant Blvd. Here’s what the recent Beyoncé BeyGood grant-winner can’t live without.

Favorite Things

Good-luck charm: The sodalite bracelet I picked up from Nepal-Tibet Handicrafts on South Street. My 12-year-old daughter insists I wear it daily — for balance.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Kimberly McGlonn’s sodalite bracelet. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

Piece of clothing: Definitely my gray cropped “End Mass Incarceration” tee.

Beauty essentials: Rose water facial toner and rose oil hand cream from Trader Joe’s.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Trader Joe’s beauty essentials. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

Indulgence: Long baths with Gold + Water Co.’s salt bath soak with lavender. So relaxing.

Role model: Maggie Walker, who’s a huge badass. She was the first Black woman to charter a bank, used that capital to create jobs for Black women in fashion, and started a newspaper — all before the 1930s.

At Home

On my desk: A pencil cactus, a few books I aspire to actually read, a box of Hot Tamales, and a Makeba “Keebs” Rainey-designed vase featuring Nina Simone.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Kimberly McGlonn’s desk. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

Morning ritual: Meditation, stretching, and then some morn­ing affection from my daughter.

Prized possession: My book collection. I have works signed by Toni Morrison and Barack Obama next to lots of vintage texts from some of the most signifi­cant Black thinkers, writers and activists of the 20th century.

Current project: Season 2 of my pod­cast, The School for Disrupters, where I interview community leaders committed to systemic change. The conversations always leave me feel­ing optimistic and challenged.

Out and About

Favorite place for a beer: Triple Bottom Brewing for the Training Montage IPA. It’s tropical, with a crisp finish.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

A beer at Triple Bottom Brewing. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Pizza from Down North. Photograph by Jauhien Sasnou

Favorite restaurant: Kurt Evans’s pizza joint, Down North. His ingredient combi­nations remind me of Milwaukee, where I grew up.

Favorite boutique: Grant Blvd. [winks] Our Warm Weather ’21 collection is a line of zero-waste all-white garments that use antebellum imagery to connect slavery and fast fashion.

Favorite coffee shop: La Colombe, but not for their coffee. The peppermint cardamom tea is everything.

grant blvd Kimberly McGlonn

Carmel-by-the-Sea. Photograph by Bjoern Schmitt/Getty Images

Next vacation: A long weekend getaway to Carmel-by-the-Sea for a super-intimate beach wedding.

Published as “Fashion Statement” in the May 2021 issue of Philadelphia magazine.