I enjoy seeing others succeed. Knowing I contributed to it is a measure of my personal success.
Over ten years ago, I decided to dedicate my life to supporting the empowerment of others. I realized I wanted to do that through entrepreneurship – pursuing it, teaching it, encouraging it and advocating on its behalf. I had this epiphany while spending a few weeks from home – caring for an aunt in my hometown of St. Louis, MO which included visiting the neighborhood I grew up in after a long absence. Between reading books and remembering what stirred my soul while I was growing up there, I had my “aha” moment.
Since that time, I have done those things and am still pursuing them now more than ever. Although I had worked with entrepreneurs before, I attended UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School specifically for a formal education on how a business should run and grow (unfortunately I did not get that from my engineering education).
I always theorized and still believe entrepreneurship is a key part in uplifting people and their communities. For example, when African-Americans own businesses, other African-Americans are more likely than not to be hired by these entrepreneurs versus remaining unemployed. I want to help more people be either self-employed or employed by others using their best abilities.
After graduating in 2005, I pursued positions to use my new skill set. Ultimately I decided to create opportunity by opening a business consultancy and pursuing clients on my own. I partnered with a local business incubator to create business plans for its clients who were interested in pursuing debt. Soon after, I chose to join a statewide nonprofit as a full-time employee to consult entrepreneurs on a daily basis about a myriad of business issues. This experience exposed me to many real business issues that potential, new and established small business owners face everyday. I counseled and trained entrepreneurs, and participated in organizations that served business owners including the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council and the North Carolina MWBE Coordinators’ Network.
If you can’t tell, I’m passionate about entrepreneurship and the huge opportunity we have in using it to change our lives, our communities and our world. I am a big proponent of doing my part to make the world a better place. Meanwhile, I have embraced personal interests including taking care of my family’s total well-being and just living in the moment.