Creating a Sense of Community Throughout The Appalachian Highlands


What I always find so interesting about this particular issue is that the women who are selected and sponsored are always so humble and there are even many who don’t take part because they feel uncomfortable talking about their success and how they got where they are. So, I want to say this to those ladies… BE PROUD! Never, ever, feel like you should make yourself and your story small. Doing what we do as women is hard work and we have busted our butts and sacrificed a lot to build our careers. Your story can be an inspiration to someone who may think she doesn’t have what it takes to achieve her dreams. So next year, when you are approached, stand tall and take part. It’s okay to be recognized for your community contributions, leadership and success.

I love this issue and what it represents. I love that I can relate to the women featured and I also know first-hand that running a company, and being a wife, mom, aunt, daughter, granddaughter, friend, and sister makes our success stories even sweeter. We take care of a lot of people ladies!

I mentioned the other day on the VIPSEEN Live! show with Whitney and Morgan: no one gets anywhere on their own: I know I didn’t. I believe my determination to be “someone” when I grew up came from the early days of my childhood. My grandmother always told me that I could do anything I set my mind to and to never depend on a man. (Haha) I say that carefully because I do, in many ways, depend on and need my dear husband, Mickey. I believe my grandmother’s point, however, was that I needed to be a woman of substance who could show up and lead. She believed I could literally accomplish any dreams that I had for myself, because ultimately, it was up to me to do so. Words are powerful and my grandmother’s words were life shaping. My mom taught me about responsibility and doing a job right or not doing it at all. My step-mom taught me about accountability and character. Angelica, Jennifer, and Felicia have taught me about loyalty, friendship, and having each other’s back. Sherrie, Ashley, and Becky have taught me that friendship is everlasting and that months can go by without a word from each other, but as soon as one of us needs the other, we are there without a second thought to support and help. So many women in this community have influenced my thinking in multiple ways. So, no, I didn’t become who I am on my own. I wouldn’t ever want to make this journey alone. The women in my life have shaped me to be who I am right now.

This year, I will be turning 40, and I am nowhere near finished with becoming the woman and leader I aspire to be. Let this be your year, too. Are you pursuing your dreams? If not, find a woman who is and ask her about mentoring you. It is never too late. We are all Superwomen/Wonder Women. Put on your cape and fly!

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