Updated: Sep 5
Who would have ever thought that women of the diaspora could gather around and be each other's cheerleaders? Oh yeah! We did! Oh, and let us not get into the women of the diaspora supporting each other! Oh, wait, that sisterhood is amazing too.
For years the narrative of how women of the diaspora do not support each other, or cannot foster geniune friendships, and so many different scenarios tried but failed to thrive due to the many safe spaces we have created and will continue to create for us, by us. The tribes of women of the diaspora supporting each other are the very reasons I developed this platform. It was black women who pushed and pushed me to be the greatest woman I could be. Now on a professional level, we have tribes of women who support each other on the sole basis that they look like each other and want to lend a hand back to pull another sister up. Future is Female event this past Thursday, reminded me of that very essential principle.
According to the founder, Tavia MD, Future is Female is an empowering experience for the way-making women of the entertainment, nonprofit, and digital marketing world. The mission of the Future is Female is to inspire female entrepreneurs by creating a space for networking, skill development, encouragement for economic independence, and professional growth. This experience included a cocktail hour sponsored by Moskato Life, followed by a panel discussion with a dynamic lineup of powerhouse women and one amazing 7-year-old business owner, Parker James.
Parker is a 7 year older business owner who has had an entrepreneurial mindset since she was 5. From selling lemonade to starting her own cosmetics line, Parker has been making moves! It has been a year since launching her cosmetic line, and she has already invested in her first house. At 7 years old, her presence checked me with the quickness, which mentally prepared me to receive the additional gems I knew the panel would deliver.
Left to Right: Sheena Wright, Danielle Young, Tavia MD, Yvonne McNair, Mika Sunga, Elaine Hamilton, & Martie Bowser
The event moderator, Martie Bowser, asked the fundamental questions which dived into topics of self-care, motivation, mindset, interaction with our counterparts, and how to deal with other's lack of self-love. The panel discussion reminded me of a fireside chat with your sisters to have a conversation on the real situations of life and not the sugarcoated ones people want you to believe.
My Favorite Tips from each panelist:
"A job is like another child, 24/7, you are accountable for this entity. So when you are not good, nothing is good." & "I am a woman of faith, I want it to be said that I did what I was supposed to do. Whether from my duties as a mother of 4 or as the President of a major company" - Sheena Wright: President & C.E.O. of United Way of New York City.
“Although my family does not fully understand my job, but they told me, "If what you want to do, give it all that you have and don't half-ass". - Mika Sunga: Co-Founder/Executive Producer for Another Way Productions and Manager of Music Programming & Curation for Hip Hop & R&B at Vevo.
"I don't like to use the word sacrifice, because I am not sacrificing anything anymore, because, in the many years of experience, one of the main things I sacrificed was myself, my time, and my energy and all it took building Elaine Hamilton." & "Until you realize your value, you will continue to sacrifice yourself for others." - Elaine Hamilton: an Events, Marketing, Lifestyle & Artist Hospitality Consultant.
“I wanted people to understand my power and let it be known I have and know my tools because I will spend so much time giving and giving and not even giving back to myself.” Yvonne McNair- MBA, CSEP, CEO of Captivate Marketing Group
*C.S.E.P.: Certified Special Event Producer, She is one of 5 black women in the country certified in Set, Lighting, & Sound Design.
"No, being assertive does not turn me into a "B-word," But that is what it is when you are a black woman, and you have assertiveness; it becomes aggression, anger, or too emotional, we don't have that luxury." - Danielle Young: a Host, Journalist, Producer, for Essence.
A safe space of women fulfilling their purpose through their passion regardless of hurdles in the way. There was such confidence yet realness of authentic experiences of not only highs but how to push past the lows, while still maintaining the positivity through Staying Focus'd in the present. Resembling a church meeting, from the harmonizations of mhmm, Y.A.S.S., talk em bout it’s, Future is Female is an essential, safe space to have. Very appreciate for Tavia MD for inviting Melaninate Minds Coalition to experience that moment, definitely something to experience for the gems that dropped.