#MEFIRST SERIES

On the cusp of my 23rd birthday, I made the courageous decision to put myself first, pack my bags, and begin my journey as a single mother. This decision was the catalyst that changed my entire life. On the journey towards your highest self, the most impactful decisions are those where your holistic well-being is prioritized, despite the many responsibilities and expectations that pull your attention. #MeFirstMonday showcases extraordinary people who are dropping personal gems about self-love and the act of putting themselves first.

 

Prior to making that life-changing decision, I looked everywhere for a sign that I was making the right choice. I am hopeful that these stories are what you need to finally love yourself the way you deserve. Restore, love.

Bibi Camilo: Licensing Manager and Blogger, Biannette.com

Bibi Camilo does licensing by day and binges reality TV shows by night. She blogs when she can, listens to the same r&b songs 100 times a day, and as much as she likes to deny it... she really likes to nap! Traveling feeds her soul, Rady, her fiancé, is her better half, and styling is her creative outlet.

Alondra Alberti: Architect and Artist, AlondraAlberti.com

Alondra Alberti is a multi-passionate creative architect that spends as much time looking at blueprints as she does developing her artistic talents. She has been practicing architecture for 11 years now; focusing on luxury real estate in Manhattan for the last 5. Through the industry she has met and worked with clients that are successful artists: Broadway directors, film actors, composers, screenplay writers. 

Tanja "La Alemana": CFO of Island Touch Dance Academy

Tanja "La Alemana" Kesinger is the female energy and Chief Financial Officer in a 3-way partnership of Island Touch Dance Academy - a global dance company. She travels on a weekly basis, with her fiancé and dance partner, to various dance events around the world to perform and teach different styles of dance. When she isn't gracing the dance floor, Tanja is leading her company's community service efforts!

Minda Harts: Founder and CEO of The Memo

Southern California born Minda Harts spent a good portion of her career in Corporate America working as a fundraising consultant, before branching out on her own. At the end of 2015, Minda launched The Memo - a career platform that helps women of color advance in the workplace. She is passionate about equipping the next generation of young women of color with the career tools they need to thrive.

Tammy Lopez: Author and Writer

Tammy Lopez is the author of “Rain for Under Watered Roses like You and I” and “Swallow: small poems like large pills.” She is also a member of the Luna Rio Collective, and the Project X 2018 slam team. When she is not writing or performing her soul-mending art, she's busy indulging in solo travel and being her mother’s favorite child, while feeding her self-proclaimed sugar addiction. 

Nia Ita: Writer and Content Creator

Nia Ita is an Afro-Dominicana writer and creative. "A queen from Queens, NY – she often has to readjust her crown and believes in the healing power of sharing her vulnerabilities." When she's not writing, creating, or sharing tips on how to love your partner via Youtube, you can probably find her reading a great book or reviewing that same book on her website.

Akosua Nyantakyi: Author of "Back to Kukurantumi" and Entrepreneur

Akosua is a new mom, learning how to balance life as an Author and Entrepreneur after being fired while pregnant. She volunteers part of her time as the Secretary for Sisters With Purpose, a non-profit organization, and writes for "Gova Media" and "Sundae's Best".

Lisa Velazquez: CEO and Founder of LisaTalksLove.com

Lisa is the Founder and CEO of Wonder Womyn. She is also a Love Coach, Speaker and Ladypreneur! Wonder Womyn is a boutique lovestyle coaching company for single professional women that helps them "reconnect with their self value to get ready for the love they desire."

Yesi Morillo-Gual: Founder of Proud to be Latina

Yesi Morillo-Gual is a mother to two young men, and the founder of Proud to be Latina, an organization that "encourages Latinas to rise to their full potential." She comes to us with a 22-year background in corporate America, and is currently taking time to give back to the Latina community.

Melanie Santos: Creator of MelanieSantos.co

Melanie is the mother of a 10-month-old little Goddess, wife to an amazing human being, the Communications and Marketing Manager for a healthcare non-profit, and the force behind the Melanie Santos brand.

On the cusp of my 23rd birthday, I made the courageous decision to put myself first, pack my bags, and begin my journey as a single mother. This decision was the catalyst that changed my entire life. On the journey towards your highest self, the most impactful decisions are those where your holistic well-being is prioritized, despite the many responsibilities and expectations that pull your attention. #MeFirstMonday showcases extraordinary people who are dropping personal gems about self-love and the act of putting themselves first.

 

Prior to making that life-changing decision, I looked everywhere for a sign that I was making the right choice. I am hopeful that these stories are what you need to finally love yourself the way you deserve. Restore, love.

Jessica Jade: Health Coach, Wellness Writer/Speaker, and Skin Care Artisan

Jessica Jade empowers women to carve time for self-care that aligns with their feminine health! She is a Holistic Health Coach, a Wellness Speaker, Writer of JessicaJade.co, and Artisan of the organic skin-care line SunKiss Organics. As a holistic health coach, she encourages women to carve time for self-care and life-changing balance to joyously heal their health

Escarle Raposo: Comedian, @Izah_Levana & PMO Analyst

Escarle Raposo is a 26 year old Master's degree recipient straddling the worlds between Corporate America and Instagram! During the day she is a Project Management Office Analyst at Moody's Corporation. By night she is posting tickle-your-funny-bone worthy content on her Instagram feed.

Destiny Denise Saldivar: Founding Editor, LovedbyDestiny.com

Destiny Denise Saldivar is the face behind the movement that is LovedbyDestiny.com. She is a Washington Heights bred, Creative Entrepreneur focused on women empowerment through self-love and healing. Her roots are planted in the Dominican Republic, a sassy young lady and cuddly pooch call her Mami, and she’s engaged to her twin flame.

Bibi Camilo: Licensing Manager and Blogger, Biannette.com

Bibi Camilo does licensing by day and binges reality TV shows by night. She blogs when she can, listens to the same r&b songs 100 times a day, and as much as she likes to deny it... she really likes to nap! Traveling feeds her soul, Rady, her fiancé, is her better half, and styling is her creative outlet.

Alondra Alberti: Architect and Artist, AlondraAlberti.com

Alondra Alberti is a multi-passionate creative architect that spends as much time looking at blueprints as she does developing her artistic talents. She has been practicing architecture for 11 years now; focusing on luxury real estate in Manhattan for the last 5. Through the industry she has met and worked with clients that are successful artists: Broadway directors, film actors, composers, screenplay writers. 

Tanja "La Alemana": CFO of Island Touch Dance Academy

Tanja "La Alemana" Kesinger is the female energy and Chief Financial Officer in a 3-way partnership of Island Touch Dance Academy - a global dance company. She travels on a weekly basis, with her fiancé and dance partner, to various dance events around the world to perform and teach different styles of dance. When she isn't gracing the dance floor, Tanja is leading her company's community service efforts!

Minda Harts: Founder and CEO of The Memo

Southern California born Minda Harts spent a good portion of her career in Corporate America working as a fundraising consultant, before branching out on her own. At the end of 2015, Minda launched The Memo - a career platform that helps women of color advance in the workplace. She is passionate about equipping the next generation of young women of color with the career tools they need to thrive.

Tammy Lopez: Author and Writer

Tammy Lopez is the author of “Rain for Under Watered Roses like You and I” and “Swallow: small poems like large pills.” She is also a member of the Luna Rio Collective, and the Project X 2018 slam team. When she is not writing or performing her soul-mending art, she's busy indulging in solo travel and being her mother’s favorite child, while feeding her self-proclaimed sugar addiction. 

Nia Ita: Writer and Content Creator

Nia Ita is an Afro-Dominicana writer and creative. "A queen from Queens, NY – she often has to readjust her crown and believes in the healing power of sharing her vulnerabilities." When she's not writing, creating, or sharing tips on how to love your partner via Youtube, you can probably find her reading a great book or reviewing that same book on her website.

Akosua Nyantakyi: Author of "Back to Kukurantumi" and Entrepreneur

Akosua is a new mom, learning how to balance life as an Author and Entrepreneur after being fired while pregnant. She volunteers part of her time as the Secretary for Sisters With Purpose, a non-profit organization, and writes for "Gova Media" and "Sundae's Best".

Lisa Velazquez: CEO and Founder of LisaTalksLove.com

Lisa is the Founder and CEO of Wonder Womyn. She is also a Love Coach, Speaker and Ladypreneur! Wonder Womyn is a boutique lovestyle coaching company for single professional women that helps them "reconnect with their self value to get ready for the love they desire."

Yesi Morillo-Gual: Founder of Proud to be Latina

Yesi Morillo-Gual is a mother to two young men, and the founder of Proud to be Latina, an organization that "encourages Latinas to rise to their full potential." She comes to us with a 22-year background in corporate America, and is currently taking time to give back to the Latina community.

Melanie Santos: Creator of MelanieSantos.co

Melanie is the mother of a 10-month-old little Goddess, wife to an amazing human being, the Communications and Marketing Manager for a healthcare non-profit, and the force behind the Melanie Santos brand.

On the cusp of my 23rd birthday, I made the courageous decision to put myself first, pack my bags, and begin my journey as a single mother. This decision was the catalyst that changed my entire life. On your personal growth journey, the most impactful decisions are those where your holistic well-being is prioritized, despite the many responsibilities and expectations that pull your attention. The #MeFirst Series showcases extraordinary people who are dropping personal gems about self-love and the act of putting themselves first.

 

Prior to making that life-changing decision, I looked everywhere for a sign that I was making the right choice. I am hopeful that these stories are what you need to finally love yourself the way you deserve.

Gangsta Gurry: CEO & Founder of GG Universe

Gary D. McCrear or "GG" is a K-12 educator turned spiritual consultant currently based in Brooklyn, NY. The development of his students and their identities as well as his own budding identity as a 'spiritual guide' to help people connect back to their 'true North' is what led him into coaching and working with people across the globe via tarot readings, self-help tools, and his self-proclaimed healing work (reiki, Akashic records, candle magic, etc.)

Brianna Peña: Creative Director & Entrepreneur

Brianna Peña wears many hats in her day to day life, but her favorite vacillates between artist, photographer, mother, and human! As the founder and creative director behind Bee.Serene Photography, Brianna "captures fleeting moments and love stories" through the art of photography. 

Cat Lantigua: Founder, CEO, and Community Builder

Cat Lantigua is a Brooklyn based Dominican-American community builder advocating for social wellness through her community organization Goddess Council and podcast Chats with Cat. She uses her platforms to amplify the voices of women and millennials shifting the culture!

Marlin 'GoodJuju' Santana: Educator, Artist, and Poet

Marlin (pronounced Marlene) 'GoodJuju' Santana was born and raised in the Bronx, the South Bronx to be exact, by two immigrant Dominican parents. She has several years of experience in Education and currently serves as the Assistant Director of a college access program that supports first-generation low-income students on their journey to, through, and beyond college. She is strong, powerful, and even when she is overthinking herself into stress, she pours good energy onto others. She is an extremely passionate person and finds herself being the happiest when she expresses herself through art and poetry. 

Uzoma F. Obidike: Educator and Certified Career Advisor

Uzoma F. Obidike, M.S. Ed., is a Certified Career Advisor and founder of She Leads Beautifully. Through this platform, she helps professional women overcome mid-career stagnation by teaching them how to leverage the power of personal branding and networking, so they can finally reach their next level. She does this through coaching, training, and a free online community.  Uzoma also has over ten years of experience in student affairs roles at institutions of higher education and is currently pursuing her doctorate in higher education leadership.

Rabih Ahmed: Artist and Creator of LOVE LIGHT & POETRY

Rabih Ahmed is a Ghanaian- American poet, performer, and entrepreneur from the Bronx, NY. She has performed her poetry at the renowned Apollo Theatre, Nuyorican Poets Cafe, and at various college campuses across New York State. Her work was first recognized by the Department of Education in the Nelson Mandela Legacy Writing Contest. As a winner of this contest, she was commissioned to Johannesburg, South Africa where she met with former president, Nelson Mandela.

Indiana P. Almanzar: Internationally Certified Empowerment Speaker & Coach

Indiana Almanzar is an education expert, Internationally Certified Speaker, Coach, and Trainer. A proud immigrant from the Dominican Republic, she is no stranger to displacement while having to navigate through a sea of barriers and insecurities. She vulnerably shares her vast experiences in order to provide light and hope to anyone who might find themselves where she once was.  

John Paul Infante: Writer, Dominican Writers Association

John Paul Infante is one of the leaders within The Dominican Writer's Association that has facilitated a number of workshops for writers looking to enhance their skills. John's profile is an inaugural one to the #MeFirst Series as our first male perspective. What could a Dominican man have to say about self love? You'll have to read his profile yourself to experience the magic.

Jessica Jade: Health Coach, Wellness Writer/Speaker, and Skin Care Artisan

Jessica Jade empowers women to carve time for self-care that aligns with their feminine health! She is a Holistic Health Coach, a Wellness Speaker, Writer of JessicaJade.co, and Artisan of the organic skin-care line SunKiss Organics. As a holistic health coach, she encourages women to carve time for self-care and life-changing balance to joyously heal their health

Escarle Raposo: Comedian, @Izah_Levana & PMO Analyst

Escarle Raposo is a 26 year old Master's degree recipient straddling the worlds between Corporate America and Instagram! During the day she is a Project Management Office Analyst at Moody's Corporation. By night she is posting tickle-your-funny-bone worthy content on her Instagram feed.

Destiny Denise Saldivar: Founding Editor, LovedbyDestiny.com

Destiny Denise Saldivar is the face behind the movement that is LovedbyDestiny.com. She is a Washington Heights bred, Creative Entrepreneur focused on women empowerment through self-love and healing. Her roots are planted in the Dominican Republic, a sassy young lady and cuddly pooch call her Mami, and she’s engaged to her twin flame.

Bibi Camilo: Licensing Manager and Blogger, Biannette.com

Bibi Camilo does licensing by day and binges reality TV shows by night. She blogs when she can, listens to the same r&b songs 100 times a day, and as much as she likes to deny it... she really likes to nap! Traveling feeds her soul, Rady, her fiancé, is her better half, and styling is her creative outlet.

Alondra Alberti: Architect and Artist, AlondraAlberti.com

Alondra Alberti is a multi-passionate creative architect that spends as much time looking at blueprints as she does developing her artistic talents. She has been practicing architecture for 11 years now; focusing on luxury real estate in Manhattan for the last 5. Through the industry she has met and worked with clients that are successful artists: Broadway directors, film actors, composers, screenplay writers. 

Tanja "La Alemana": CFO of Island Touch Dance Academy

Tanja "La Alemana" Kesinger is the female energy and Chief Financial Officer in a 3-way partnership of Island Touch Dance Academy - a global dance company. She travels on a weekly basis, with her fiancé and dance partner, to various dance events around the world to perform and teach different styles of dance. When she isn't gracing the dance floor, Tanja is leading her company's community service efforts!

Minda Harts: Founder and CEO of The Memo

Southern California born Minda Harts spent a good portion of her career in Corporate America working as a fundraising consultant, before branching out on her own. At the end of 2015, Minda launched The Memo - a career platform that helps women of color advance in the workplace. She is passionate about equipping the next generation of young women of color with the career tools they need to thrive.

Tammy Lopez: Author and Writer

Tammy Lopez is the author of “Rain for Under Watered Roses like You and I” and “Swallow: small poems like large pills.” She is also a member of the Luna Rio Collective, and the Project X 2018 slam team. When she is not writing or performing her soul-mending art, she's busy indulging in solo travel and being her mother’s favorite child, while feeding her self-proclaimed sugar addiction. 

Nia Ita: Writer and Content Creator

Nia Ita is an Afro-Dominicana writer and creative. "A queen from Queens, NY – she often has to readjust her crown and believes in the healing power of sharing her vulnerabilities." When she's not writing, creating, or sharing tips on how to love your partner via Youtube, you can probably find her reading a great book or reviewing that same book on her website.

Akosua Nyantakyi: Author of "Back to Kukurantumi" and Entrepreneur

Akosua is a new mom, learning how to balance life as an Author and Entrepreneur after being fired while pregnant. She volunteers part of her time as the Secretary for Sisters With Purpose, a non-profit organization, and writes for "Gova Media" and "Sundae's Best".

Lisa Velazquez: CEO and Founder of LisaTalksLove.com

Lisa is the Founder and CEO of Wonder Womyn. She is also a Love Coach, Speaker and Ladypreneur! Wonder Womyn is a boutique lovestyle coaching company for single professional women that helps them "reconnect with their self value to get ready for the love they desire."

Yesi Morillo-Gual: Founder of Proud to be Latina

Yesi Morillo-Gual is a mother to two young men, and the founder of Proud to be Latina, an organization that "encourages Latinas to rise to their full potential." She comes to us with a 22-year background in corporate America, and is currently taking time to give back to the Latina community.

Melanie Santos: Creator of MelanieSantos.co

Melanie is the mother of a 10-month-old little Goddess, wife to an amazing human being, the Communications and Marketing Manager for a healthcare non-profit, and the force behind the Melanie Santos brand.