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I've had to overcome a lot of adversity. I've had to walk through many valleys and climb many mountains.

I was a mother at the age of 16. I gave birth to my son, Dwight (a gift from God), on the last day of 11th grade. I was determined to return for my senior year, and I graduated from Winter Park High School near the top of my class.

That fall I enrolled at the local community college, and for 1-1/2 years, I worked two jobs, went to school and raised my son. Around that time I realized that I had a gift and passion for hairstyling. My Grandmother Ruth owned a salon and she inspired me. She became my mentor and encourager.

I enrolled in a hairstyling institute and graduated in 1983. Immediately, I began working, but my life was far from perfect. I had a very active social life that included smoking, drinking and drugs.

For 20 years I worked at Tony's Hair Salon in Orlando, Florida. Then in 1993, I gave birth to my daughter, Brooke (my second gift from God).

In 1998, after my grandmother's death, I received the greatest gift of all: salvation. That was the turning point of my life.

The Lord started me on a new journey. He led me to New Covenant Baptist Church in Orlando, where I began to develop a hunger for Christ, and I began to seek and realize God's will for my life.

In 2001, with my pastor's blessing, I enrolled in the Institute of Theology and Ministry Training, a fully accredited online Bible college. In June 2002 I received the certificate of Specialist in Missions and Evangelism with Honors.

While I continued to take Bible classes, I completed the Entrepreneurial Training Program offered by Central Florida's Minority/Women Business Enterprise Alliance. In June 2003, I received my associate degree in biblical studies with honors. Two months later, God blessed me with the opening of my own salon, the New Day Hair Salon & Spa.

Along the way, God has also blessed me with three grandchildren and three godchildren—my angels!

I pray that as I continue to seek His will and follow His commands, all God's blessing will overtake me. God has taken me from my pain to His peace. He has given me power through the Holy Spirit to fulfill His purpose. To God be the glory!

 

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