Mothers: The Most Underrated History Makers
Almost every meeting I went to in March started with an icebreaker focused on the most inspirational woman in our lives. For the majority of people that person was their mom. Moms have the biggest impact on how their children will turn out and how those kids in turn influence the world. I know my mother has greatly influenced my life, but there are even more mothers in my network whose impact shouldn’t be overlooked. To show my gratitude I want to highlight a few of those great women.
It’s only right that I start with my mom. Her perseverance raised five kids who all grew up to be first generation college graduates. The legacy of education continued even further as my siblings and I went on to get advanced degrees. My mother didn't always know where our next meal would come from, but she always found a way to provide for me and my siblings. Her love and tenacity shaped me into the woman I am today and for that I’m so grateful.
My older sister, Aminah, was one of my early role models. She inspired me to go to Emory University after telling me about the life-changing education I could receive by going to such a prestigious school.
She graduated from Clark Atlanta University and through her education journey taught me to be tenacious and persevere. She continues to teach me those lessons through the way she tackles motherhood. She is raising two special needs boys and does so with the most nurturing heart.
Tangie Allen and Maria Armstrong
Tangie Allen and Maria Armstrong are the co-founders of Raising Expectations. Through an admirable sisterhood, together they lead an invaluable youth development organization. The two met while both were enrolled as students at Georgia State University and collaborated to create and develop their nonprofit into the award-winning program and resource it is today.
Prior to co-founding their organization the two had rich careers in their respective sectors. For over nine years Tangie Allen worked for local government and for nearly two decades Maria Armstrong served the Atlanta area in a variety of academic and service-oriented capacities. Tangie and Marie are mothers to the thousands of youth they have serviced over the years. Their work continues to inspire me to invest in our next generation of leaders.
Prior to becoming the CEO of the Future Foundation, Ronnette Smith was Founder and CEO of a full-service consultancy firm specializing in brand management, corporate reputation, and grassroots strategic planning. Her work focused on stakeholder relations, social responsibility, and infusing cross-sector partnerships into diverse, equitable, and inclusive social and work environments.
Her senior leadership experience played a pivotal role in national strategic planning, DEI programming, and developing an emerging leaders pipeline throughout the United States. Smith has acted as a mother figure and role model to the many young adults who have crossed her path at organizations such as Future Foundation, and it is a huge source of what makes her an incredible person to learn from.
Thank you for your impact!
My life is shaped by the people in my network and I am proud to have these women as part of my strong foundation. Motherhood takes on many shapes and forms. Whether in the home or through an institution there are many women who take on the roles of mothers by nurturing and supporting those who need it most. Making mothers - in every sense of the word - the most underrated history makes.