Meet The Nonprofit Guru!
I am the third child of ten children, and the middle child of the first five. As the first girl, by the time I was 12 years old, there were 9 children in a military family where dad was gone all too often to serve the country and mom and I managed the household on a meager stipend that was never enough to cover the needs. My siblings respected me and obeyed me as their second mom. I was counselor, advisor, tutor, gift extractor, caregiver, emotional support sibling and eventually financial contributor to school events and college activities. I loved it and never regretted it.
As a young adult, married to a military man and privileged with assignments in the US, Japan and international travel experiences, with five children born in ten years, I was able to pursue my passion and purpose of earning formal educational degrees and helping myself and others become our better selves. I love reading, writing, researching and offering opportunities and possibilities for personal growth using my personal story of challenges, defeats and victories. I received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Minor in Sociology with many hours in Criminal Justice. Fourteen years after receiving my Bachelor’s degree, I earned a Master of Arts in Human Resource Development, one class away from a Master of Arts in Counselor Education and received a Doctorate of Divinity.
Education and Social Services have become my industries of choice. I got my start in San Diego, CA at the Palavra Tree, an alcohol recovery center with Dr. Malone. The San Diego Urban League was where I became a caring, radical social justice advocate
I garnered several training certificates and positions include the following and more: Public Health Educator (HIV_AIDS), Train-the-Trainer Certification, Education Department Assistant Director, Juvenile Prevention and Intervention Services, Unintended Pregnancy Prevention, Reunification Facilitator for foster families (Child Protection Services), Black Family Parenting Educator, Substitute/Elementary Teacher, Alcohol/Substance Abuse Recovery Program Manager and Lesbian/Gay Support Group Facilitator.
As a believer, ministry began at nine years old when the pastor’s daughter and I started the first youth choir at my home church in Baltimore, MD. At sixteen, I began my teaching career as a Sunday School Teacher of all ages. Serving was a passion and my destiny was sealed as Youth/Young People/Senior Adult Services Director, Choir Director and Devotional Worship Leader, Program Developer and member of ministerial leadership teams. After 16 years in Shreveport, Louisiana, my territory expanded to the Community College of the Air Force as an Education Specialist and Trainer. My passion for equality led me to 9 years as a Community Organizer (OAF). It was in Shreveport in 2005 that I realized my life-long dream and became a Non-Profit Management Consultant and Principal Investigator of my own agency, Integrity Consulting & Professional Services, LLC. True to my spiritual calling as Teacher/Minister/Evangelist/ Pastor/Bishop, in March 2018, after my first visit to Africa, I became President/Founder of an international ministry in my beloved Africa. Salama International Inc. is now a registered non-governmental organization in Kenya, also serving Uganda and Nigeria, and focusing on food sustainability during a time of famine and business closures. Eighteen new agribusinesses include fish ponds and chicken farms, brick building, corn, vegetable and sugar cane gardens, tailor shop, hotel, selling cereal, school expansion and now tackling tribal injustices leading to unemployment and low education attainment in young adults.
In May 2018, I became the executive director and grant writer of a community development corporation in Houston, Texas. In 2019, I became the president of an area in North Houston serving approximately 43,000 primarily Hispanic and African Americans in a low-income, disenfranchised area. Afterschool programming is my forte. We were elated to receive a grant for a very successful 2019 summer camp for 25 neighborhood youth. Spanish-speakers and English-speakers learned to bridge the language barrier challenge, and parents were thankful that their children had a safe haven for a continuous learning and enrichment experience. Even with the City of Houston shut-down due to COVID-19 in 2020, the corporation received a six-figure grant to start the process of racial equity and justice healing in 2021. Additional funds are being pursued to address this issue globally over the next decade.
I love my work and my work fuels my passion to facilitate the visioning, planning, resourcing, implementing and advocating for culturally relevant projects to improve the quality of life and make stakeholders feel safe to work, worship, play and learn within the boundaries of their living space. And this I will do as God permits.