What’s She Doing Now?
Our 2015 Seeds of Growth Leadership Award Winner shares what she’s been doing over the last year.
If you haven’t met Latesha, it is probably because she hasn’t been still long enough for you to catch her. She’s had an incredibly full year since receiving the GROW Leadership Award last year. Check out the things she’s been up to – and catch her if you can at one of her amazing events!
Q. What types of entrepreneurial work/events or woman focused community events have you participated in since the end of last year?
Man… It’s been one heck of a ride. Let’s See… I completed a Hustler’s in Heels – Winter Edition at Downtown Market. This event was full with 100 local leading ladies looking for inspiration from others who have been successful in business.
I worked with ACH Hospitality as the Wardrobe Stylist and Key Make-up Artist for their welcome videos that greet guests through their TV screens daily at both Amway and JW by Marriott Hotels.
I hosted a Fabulous LIP Bar at Standale Interiors for the WOTV4Women annual event Girls Night Out and helped about 50 women see themselves through my eyes while experimenting with different lipstick textures and shades.
I hosted several East meets West Popup Thrift shops for First Fridays along the Avenue for the Arts… which provides an opportunity for local artists and entrepreneurs to sell their products and creations to people in the community at large.
I was featured in Women’s Lifestyle Magazine and given a double page feature on Make-up titled, “Special Occasion Make-up Tutorial”.
I became a Certified Tourism Ambassador for the City of Grand Rapids through Experience GR and scored 100 percent on the examination.
I started producing I Got Face Clothing.
REVUE MAGAZINE included me in a feature – The Style issue – as a key stake holder in the beauty industry in this city. I was also identified by Grand Rapids Magazine as one of the top 5 Make-up Artists in the city.
I hosted a very successful Make-up class at the Herkimer Community Space in downtown GR affectionately titled, “Beauty & The Beat”.
I completed an Entrepreneur course called Spring GR and was able to pitch for additional funding for my business. I took 3rd place and scored $1000.00 to give my business a much needed face lift.
I provided Make-up Artistry in Detroit for Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child on the Boss Network Ladies that Lead Tour.
I modeled for SheFit Apparel which is a Grand Rapids based female owned company that received an awesome boost from ABC’s “Shark Tank”. (In case you didn’t know, Sara Moylan, Founder of SheFit, shared her recent success with us here at GROW too).
Most recently, I won the Start Garden 5×5 Competition and received $5,000.00 for an idea to launch a Make-up Mobile Truck, which will hit the streets of GR in spring of 2017.
Q. How has the recognition from GROW for the 2015 Leadership Award changed your outlook on your work or role in business? In the community?
Its affected me in two different ways… first its shown me that entrepreneurs, especially those that are females and mothers, have to work twice as hard to get half as far when it comes to recognition. Unless you’re a woman occupying a space in a more traditional field, it’s incredibly difficult to even be considered in the community as a leader.
On the flip side however, it has made me especially grateful for entities like GROW because they challenge the status quo and don’t force women to effect change from inside a box. Receiving the GROW award was confirmation for me that it is more than acceptable to both dream in color and live strong outside the box.
This award has shown me that while we’ve come a long way, there is still so much work to be done in terms of advancing women led initiatives in Grand Rapids. It has given me the fuel and recognition I so desired to keep on keeping on…
Q. Have you attended any other GROW workshops, events or joint events since last year? If so, which ones?
I make it my business to not only attend events where I can but also to collaborate with GROW wherever possible. I really enjoy the Sparkle Event annually (held the first week of December) and you can often times see me in and out of the office picking up some sort of in-kind sponsorship from GROW for one of my POSH events.
And every now and then, you might even catch me in the office picking Bonnie’s brain about how to live the life I’ve imagined. The staff at GROW has been more than kind to me and have sewn many seeds into my life and entrepreneurial ventures that I will eternally be grateful for. I am currently giving serious consideration to participating in the EntrepreneurHER class they will be offering later this Fall. I can’t get enough of all of the wonderful people at GROW.
Q. What else can you share about your experience as a GROW Leadership Award winner, and your outlook on women entrepreneurs here in West Michigan?
I believe in Girl Power and receiving the GROW Leadership Award last year only added fuel to my fire. Make-up is my ministry and I have always given special attention to Teen Girls and Women in Transition. In our society, when it comes to entrepreneurship, access and thriving businesses, women have historically been the underdogs. In a community as conservative as West Michigan, GROW provides a platform for creative women who have dreams in their bellies they must give birth too.
We are talented, capable and strong; as long as we have agencies that plant seeds for momprenuers, I guarantee that GROW will play a part in sparking the brain that changes the world.