Rise Women Empowerment Tour DC

The Rise Empowerment Tour hit DC last weekend. The event took place in the Blackburn Center on Howard University’s Campus.  I’ve lived here almost 30 years and I’ve never been on Howard’s Campus.  This Tour is all about empowering women interested in entrepreneurship and looking for tips to take it to the next level. Each speaker was an existing black female CEO.  Bonus: The weather was perfect!

R – Reach & Repeat I – Inspire S – Sisterhood E – Elevate

“Individually we’re impressive, together we’re unstoppable”

Alikay Naturals The Natural Hair Nstitute NapturalNichole

 Angela Walker {AngelaGoneSocial} | Nicole {NapturalNicole | Rochelle Graham {@BlackOnyx77}

Angela and Rochelle collaborated on this multi-city event to inspire and empower women. So simple, so powerful and so necessary.  A lot of times we don’t see CEO’s that look like us. It is important to know that they are out there. It is important to know you can join the ranks if that is your dream.

Angela, CEO of N Natural Hair Studio, The Natural Hair Nstitute and creator of The Naturalista Hairshow &  Co-founder of The Natural Hair Industry Convention. Angela did all of this and she isn’t even 30 yet. Let me get my dreams together because clearly I’m slacking.  She is all about passion | problem | purpose. That was her formula when she started her business ventures. “Have the audacity to make the world the way you want.”

Rochelle, CEO of Alikay Naturals and owner of Be Fabulous Salon.  Rochelle came to the United States at nine years old.  She desired a product for her like hers but couldn’t find any in the stores. After mixing existing products she decided to create her own. Now you can find them on the shelves at your local Target, Sally Beauty and more. She prides herself on supporting those that support her and remaining authentic. “It is not your job to make others feel comfortable.”

Nicole, Beauty, Hair & Lifestyle Blogger of Naptural Nicole was the perfect host, this girl here will have you laughing until your stomach hurts. Her messages are on point but her delivery had tears running down my face. “It is important to empower EVERYONE!”

Ngozi Heat Free Hair

Ngozi Opara {@ngozithestylist} CEO of Heat Free Hair is a Natural Hair and Extension Specialist. Ngozi started the heat free hair movement. This was a means to protect ones natural hair from heat damage. This girl moved to China so she could learn the manufacturing business. You need to learn your craft top to bottom; that’s what I’m talking about. “Your life experiences prepare you for who you are meant to be and what you’re meant to do.”

Ray Marshall O Ray International

Ray Marshall {@O_Ray} CEO of O’Ray International Photography & Modeling Agency and soon to be Boutique Owner. She has modeling business in New York, Atlanta, DC, California, Europe & London. She also has a no nudity policy, love that. The greatest model one can be is a role model.  Her clothing lines debuts summer 2015. This was Ray’s first time speaking and she got emotional. It was raw and genuine, Howard is her alma-mater so this was full circle for her. She has a shy, quiet strength about her that I loved. Not to mention her body is sick and her dresses are fly. {See her Instagram} “Do what you love, master it & charge for it.”

Candace Mitchell Myavana

Candace Mitchell {@Myavana} CEO of Myavana was frequently the only black and female in her studies at Georgia Tech. Did I mention she got a full ride for their Science Tech Program? #BlackGirlsRock After a year working for Fortune 500 Companies she started her own company.  Techturized, Inc. launched Myavana, a mobile app where Black women can discover new hairstyles, products uniquely designed for your hair based on a strand analysis and local stylist in their area. “Don’t be afraid to defend your vision or idea.” “Don’t let anyone make you feel like you don’t belong here.”

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After sharing their individual stories the ladies took the stage for a panel Q&A session.

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Group shot in comfy shoes for the Rise Ceremony.

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We wrote our dreams down, attached them to the string of the balloon and sent them off into the universe.

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Almost that time…

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Off they go, can’t wait to see mine come tree. 

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Rochelle is owner of Alikay Naturals. She and I virtually became friends almost 10 years ago. We were both newly natural trying to navigate our natural hair journey.  Back then a website named Nappturality is where it was happening. That was pre-Facebook and MySpace, the popular natural hair bloggers hadn’t gotten started yet or were just getting started. We documented our natural hair journey on Fotki. It was so good to finally meet her. I’m so proud of all that she has accomplished.  Her Lemongrass product is the bomb!

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My Blogger Boo Jonna {Naturally-Glam} was there. It’s always great to see her.

I love when I’m re-energized to take on the world. Thanks for the girl power girls!

Have you put your dreams into the Universe?

Rise Empowerment

Chat with me in the comment section below or here, here or here.


Article written by:

Mimi Robinson is the Lifestyle Media Correspondent and editor behind MimiCuteLips®. She is a wife and mother of two. You can find Mimi working media at your favorite events, traveling and trying out new adventures, or working on a dope DIY project.

Join the discussion

  1. Josselyne

    Awesome! As a natural woman myself. it is great to see these women of great success lift others on their journey as well. We all need encouragment and mentors! By the way, I have the lemongrass too 🙂

    • MimiCuteLips

      Josselyne, I totally agree. I love to support others making their dreams come true. It inspires me to keep working at my dreams and I hope to inspire others. Girl that Lemongrass is right. lol

  2. Tina @ My Highest Self

    I definitely have put my dreams in the universe! Sounds like a great event, love your photos

  3. Kat

    IT LOOKS LIKE you had a great time my friend. I love the photos and I love the RISE acronym. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Jessica Harlow

    This sounds like an amazing panel of strong, talented women. What a great event to have them share their experiences and encourage others!

  5. Rocio Chavez (@yoursassyself)

    That’s what it’s all about sharing and lifting each other up, instead of beating each other down. There’s enough for everyone, so let’s make the journey up together. 😀

  6. Shonda

    I love women empowerment events. A great way to be around high energy, motivation and support.

  7. Tyra (@BarrisTourista)

    This sounds like it was a wonderful event. With many inspiring women. Always great when we can support each other!

    • MimiCuteLips

      Tyra, I hate the stereotype that women can’t work together or empower each other. I try so hard to show the world we can.

  8. Kristin

    Sounds amazing! I love gatherings like that full of strong women looking to lift one another up! I’ll have to think on my biggest dream and send it up!

  9. Jaye@Curvatude

    This looks like such a great event Mimi, lots of words of wisdom for all of us. And I LOVE the dream balloon idea.

  10. Teri H

    What a great group of women.

  11. Christine @MomsNCharge

    You know I’m all about the women empowerment! I was sad I didn’t hear about this until the last minute and wasn’t able to attend. Hopefully, they’ll do it again next year. Thanks for sharing this awesome recap 🙂

  12. Rosey

    It does sound like a great tour. I love that there was comedy involved.

  13. Pingback: Rise Empowerment DC Will Blow Your Mind - MimiCuteLips

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