Date & Time:

May 5, 2023, 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM 


The Promontory 
5311 South Lake Park Avenue West Chicago, IL 60615

About This Event

Where medical docs and comedians kick it and get rid of the “ick” factor by getting folks comfortable about talking about digestive health!

ABGH Mission

To promote health equity in Black communities, advance science and develop the careers of Black gastroenterologists, hepatologists, and scientists.

Networking, Community, & Eats – 6:30pm

  • Get comfortable, find a seat, meet some folks, and get ready for a great show.

Bustin’ A Gut Intro – 7:15pm

  • Welcome and Intro
    Sophie Balzora, MD, FACG
    President and Co-founder, ABGH

It’s SHOWTIME! – 7:20-8:45pm

  • The “medutainment” begins!
      • What is the Gut Anyway?
      • GI Issues and Myths
      • Phobias, Fears, and Misinformation About the Gut

    Ed Mcdonald, MD; Dave Helem, Taneshia “Just Nesh” Rice, Kellye Howard, Leon “The Destined Legend” Reynolds

Have fun. Enjoy the crowd!! – 8:45-930pm

  • Have questions? Want to learn more? Or want to just enjoy the vibe? Now’s the time.


Dr. Ed McDonald is a trained chef and board certified gastroenterologist dedicated to improving the health of individuals and communities through nutrition education. He obtained his undergraduate education at the University of Michigan and his medical education at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He subsequently completed a residency in Internal Medicine at Northwestern, a fellowship in Clinical Nutrition at the University of Chicago, and a fellowship in Gastroenterology at Rush University. He is currently the Associate Director of Adult Clinical Nutrition at the University of Chicago. He serves on the boards of several local and national non-profit organizations.


Dave Helem is a stand-up comedian, actor, and writer from Chicago, Illinois. He attributes his sense of humor to the fact that he believes there is something funny in every facet of human life. He has headlined numerous venues and has performed on tour in numerous cities with Hannibal Buress, Tony Rock, Doug Stanhope, and Tracy Morgan. Dave successfully completed a two-month residency at the Woolly Mammoth Theater in Washington D.C. for Second City’s Black Side of the Moon, where he helped create and write the most successful selling show in the history of that theater. He was a writer for Comedy Central’s Hood Adjacent, and staff writer for the FOX sitcom, REL. He is currently living in Los Angeles as a writer for Issa Rae's HBO Max show, Rap Sh!t.


Kellye Howard is a multidisciplinary performer and writer. She’s been featured on NBC’s Chicago Fire, FOX’s Empire, Russo Brothers - Cherry, and is guest-starring in the upcoming season of Power Book IV: Force, as the recurring character of Kendra. Kellye is currently touring her third one woman show ‘Crazy or Nah?!,’ which debuted at Chicago’s famed Steppenwolf Theatre. As a comedian, she can be seen on Comedy Central, NBC, FOX’s Laughs, & LOL Network. Kellye also teaches stand-up comedy and solo performance levels I & II at DePaul University Chicago.

All social media @kellyehoward (www.kellyehoward.com).

Kellye is managed by Brooke Shoemaker at Artist First: bshoemakerasst@artistsfirst-chi.com.

Fun Fact: Kellye was an electrician in the United States Air Force


Growing up immersed in the richness of Chicago's soul music scene of the 70s and early 80s, Duane Powell entered the world of street promotions in 1985 pounding the pavement promoting events for prominent DJs within Chicago's burgeoning house music scene starting with Lil Louis. By 1990, Duane had done street promotions and served as marketing manager and consultant for many clubs and DJs including the historic Powerhouse. As a DJ, he has spun, headlined and has held residencies at many of Chicago's most popular music venues, hot spots and festivals including Taste Of Chicago, SummerDance and Chicago House Festival. He has also been headliner at festivals throughout the U.S. including Arizona House Festival, Afro Disco Miami and shared the bill with the likes Francois K, Nicky Siano, Joe Claussell, Ron Trent, DJ Spinna, Ian Friday and many many more. In 2019, he was named Best House DJ by the Chicago Reader and most recently, recorded a live DJ set for the international TV network Boiler Room.


Taneshia "Just Nesh" Rice is a quickly rising standup comedian from Chicago; her boundless energy and easily relatable nature make her a hit for audiences across the country. Nesh's first big break came in 2016 when she was selected to be a part of the first season of Comedy Central's Kevin Hart Presents: Hart of the City; her set was so well received that Hart and Comedy Central quickly offered her her own half-hour special, The Next Level. In 2018 Nesh appeared in Russell Simmons' HBO standup showcase All Def Comedy, alongside comedy heavyweights DeRay Davis, Deon Cole, and more. Just Nesh made her TruTV debut in 2019 on LaffMob Lafftracks. Most recently, Nesh can be seen on Showtime's Monique & Friends Comedy special.


Leon "The Destined Legend" Rogers is a husband, father, DJ, comedian, actor, and radio and television personality. The self- proclaimed “Destined Legend” began his career as a stand-up comedian in the mid-1990s and has been steadfast in making the masses laugh through his calculated ignorance ever since. Leon has been featured on several popular comedy shows, including: Showtime at the Apollo, BET’s Comic View and One Mic Stand, P. Diddy’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Jamie Foxx’s Laffapalooza, Cedric the Entertainer’s Starting Lineup, and Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes. He also spent two years as cohost of the sports talk radio show Sports Unplugged with ESPN writer Scoop Jackson and college basketball analyst Steve Bardo. In 2009, he was selected as a spokesperson for the EA Sports video game Madden NFL 09. Leon is currently the host on Chicago Fox 32’s Later with Leon—a raw, uncut spin on news and Black culture. He is also co-host of Chicago’s The WGCI Morning Show every weekday.

Where can I go to find out more?

Check out these resources to learn more about gut health

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