Even if you are from the same neighborhood as someone else, you might still be coming from different places. Where you are from is a complicated question and it elicits complicated, but interesting and thought-provoking responses. We’ve shared some of those responses below.

Flame Gotti | Music Artist/ Label Owner

I’m from Atlanta Georgia. I’m what they call a “Grady Baby”. I grew up on just about every side of Atlanta, but mainly The west side & south side. I grew up in mostly “hood” places which motivated me to make something of myself. I lost most of my close friends to either jail or death, so I was always Very serious when it came to making something happen for not only me, but everybody else around me. I’ve had a passion for writing & recording music all my life, so I’m my mind I always told myself “I won’t be denied”. After losing 1 of my older bro’s to gunfire , his death impacted me greatly to make a name for myself in the music business. Football & Music was his passion, so when he died I felt as though I had no choice but to create opportunities in those two fields! I ran with it, created my own entertainment company “Flame Nation Entertainment” & haven’t looked back since.. I’m also currently investing in a few properties around the Atlanta area and will be on the way to owning a few of my own very soon. Read more>>

Shauna Woods | She.E.O and Founder of She’s B.A.E Collection + Decor

I’m originally from New York; and my upbringing was between The Bronx and Harlem. Being raised in New York, in the 80’s and 90’s I was surrounded by a rich source of cultural influences that was there from as far back as I can remember. But it also came with a somewhat conservative upbringing, which I appreciate now of course because it provided me with a sense of discipline. At an early age, specifically 12 years old, I made my first $100 working on the weekends at my late grandmother Sylvia Woods’ culinary business Sylvia’s Restaurant the Queen of Soul Food. My parents and grandparents always taught me the value of making your own money and owning a business. Having an entrepreneurial spirit from my late grandmother Sylvia Woods, I knew from an early age either I was going to help run her business or have one of my own. She introduced to me the family business and the importance of being your OWN BAE (Building An Empire). I saw firsthand how a strong black woman can successfully run a business and build an empire. ​Read more>>

Cynthia Tolbert | Author, Retired Attorney

I was born in Toledo, Ohio, but moved to Biloxi, Mississippi when I was only seven years of age. I’ve lived in the South ever since. Raised by a beautiful, strong-willed southern woman, and a man who always wanted to make her happy, life was filled with school during the week days, church on the weekends, beach trips, and family vacations in the summer. It seemed idyllic as long as we all performed as expected. I didn’t quite fit into the ‘southern lady’ mold my mother had envisioned for me, but I became a school teacher, as my parents preferred. A few years later, to my parents’ dismay, my marriage failed, and I packed my children and belongings up and enrolled in law school. The next thirty years were filled with raising and educating two great kids and traveling across the country in litigation. Read more>>

Rashada LeRoy | CEO of LRY Media Group and Creator of lōb

I’m from Dothan, AL, a small metro area southeast of Montgomery. We lived in the Johnson Homes housing projects up until me and brother were in the 4th grade and my mom made the single most important decision that changed the trajectory of our lives, she moved us to Pensacola, FL to work at my grandfather’s newspaper. My grandfather was a born entrepreneur and throughout my mom’s childhood he always owned different businesses. Watching my mom learn his business and take those skills back to Dothan when I was in 8th grade and start her own newspaper was my first time understanding what it meant to be an entrepreneur. It was in those moments watching her, and being at her office and seeing how she took control of her life and career that became my inspiration. Who I am today was shaped 100% by the courage and strength that I saw in my mom. I learned how to be bold, but also thoughtful. Read more>>

Kenisha McIntosh | Creator of My Tribe Essentials & Serial Entrepreneur

I was born in Far Rockaway, Queens, NY. Growing up in New York gave me the opportunity to have many things at my fingertips, which was and is still amazing. There’s a constant convenience that makes NYC what it is and it makes the impossible absolutely possible. It’s helped me to dream big and stay focused on my goals. The other side of growing up there is that you experience many things and are forced to mature very quickly. Compared to my friends that didn’t grow up in NYC or major cities, even my college experience was a cake-walk because of the things I’d done before I ever arrived at school. The saying about New York, “if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere” is true for me. From meeting celebrities on any given day to riding the subway with millionaires, I’m able to hold a conversation with anyone. Experiencing homelessness and having to fight for what’s mine taught me resilience and gave me grit. Having a well-rounded view of the world came from being surrounded by different cultures and people. Read more>>

Kenzie Rowland | Comedic Actress, Writer and Producer

I’m from very small town South Georgia… which is about is fun as it sounds. Growing up I always felt I didn’t quite fit in with my surroundings and peer groups. I was so anxious as a kid for a couple years there I thought my full name was “You Know How Kenzie Is” Rowland. So, I took my little ever growing ball of feelings in my chest and channeled it through the arts and acting and comedy as a release! I am really fortunate to have grown up with a mom and grandparents who exposed me to the legends at a very young age. As a little kid when most of my friends were watching Saturday Morning Cartoons, I was watching re-runs of I Love Lucy, The Muppet Show, The Carol Burnett Show and Gilda Radner Live! I used to sit in the backseat of my mom’s car and dream about one day running off to the “big city” and becoming an actress and comedian…I knew from a very young age all I wanted to do was perform and make people laugh!. Read more>>

Annissia Davis | Speech-Language Pathologist, Real Estate Investor and Author

I am a proud native of Miami, Florida, hailing from the Opa-Locka area and I never forget where I came from. For those familiar with Opa-Locka, they are aware, it’s one of the rougher areas of the city, but I feel like that background gave me the motivation and determination to make it and to help as many people as I can along the way. Too many times people come from inner-city or urban areas and ‘forget’ the struggles they faced to make it out, or feel that if they made it, anybody can, when more often than not, that is not the case. We are all cut from different fabrics making our resiliency contingent upon the fabric of which we are made. So for me personally, I don’t feel successful until I can bring others to that same or greater level of success. So today, my work is all about helping, empowering and uplifting others. Read more>>

Honey Darvas | Stylist and L’anza Healing Artist

My upbringing definitely shaped my ability to use my creativity and imagination as a hairdresser. I was raised in Arlington, Texas by my mom and grandma. My late mother was very progressive. She enrolled me in a preschool for gifted children with a high IQ named the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. We took field trips to all of the local art museums and learned about art. We also learned about biology and chemistry as well as interacted with animals which fostered a love of nature. I remember I was the only child brave enough to hold the boa constrictor named Daisy which scared my mother to death! We also saw plays at the professional theatre Casa Manana. I was raised to love art and science and to respect all living things. My imagination and creativity were encouraged and validated and I really feel that my upbringing has allowed me to use my creativity on a daily basis and have confidence in it as a hairdresser. Read more>>

Jason Montoya | Tactical Content Marketing Consultant

Where are you from and how did your background and upbringing impact who you are today? Originally from the small city of Flagstaff, Arizona, my wife and I moved to Atlanta in 2005. Growing up, life was generously poured into me from my family (both immediate and extended) and my community. This wonderful picture of thriving with others contrasted the chaos that I’d face after getting married, moving across the country, finishing college, and launching a business. As I experienced severe challenges of real-life, apart from my home and family, I came to realize the value of what it was that was given to me growing up from those who loved and gave to me along the way. The power of this contrast, between the darkness I now faced, and the light I grew up within, helped point the direction forward when I felt cornered and alone as I struggled to survive. Without positively and personally experiencing what was possible, I would not have known anything other than the suffering I faced and eventually overcame. Read more>>

Kate Robertson | Southern Food & Lifestyle Writer

I love and hate this question. There’s no short answer. I was born in a small town in southeastern North Carolina, and lived in the Piedmont region of the state until I was five. Then my family moved to Atlanta, then to the Philadelphia suburbs. Then back to Atlanta. Then back to Philadelphia. I went to college in southwestern Virginia, grad school back in North Carolina, and then moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee, in 2015. And no, my parents weren’t military. These days, I find myself saying I’m “originally from North Carolina, and grew up in Atlanta.” But really, I can’t identify one place I’ve lived as my hometown. If I had to give one answer, I’d say I’m from the South. Moving around so much wasn’t always easy—leaving friends and familiar places and whatnot. But if all our moves taught me anything, it’s adaptability and dealing with change very well. Being “the new kid” doesn’t give me anxiety. Read more>>

Ciji Townsend | Public Speaker, Wellness Advocate and Podcast Host

I’m originally from Ft. Worth, TX and as I share often at speaking engagements, I came out of the womb with a to do list. I’ve been active in organizations and activities my entire life and because it was a norm in my family, I never questioned busyness. Until I started to feel the negative impacts. My over-programmed schedule, unrealistic expectations fueled from my to do list and society’s “hustle hard” influence all contributed to the glorification of busyness. And ultimately the desire to wear busy as a badge of honor led to a life where I was just surviving when I could have been thriving. On the other hand, my life experiences paired with extensive research have equipped me with the ability to lead the Balanced Not Busy space and share the importance of embracing balance with people all of the country via social media content, speaking engagements and as the host of the being BALANCED podcast. Read more>>

Regina D. “Gena-Mae” Wells | Author, Writer, Director & Producer

I was born and raised in Villa Rica, Georgia. I lived in a household with both my parents. My father was a performer in a traveling band, called the “Chaperells,” he was the lead singers. They opened for artists like Lionel Richie, Howard Hewett and Prince! My mother was a dedicated church goer and I soon discovered a love for singing as well as writing at church. I became a major part of our Performing Arts Ministry and soon became the head of that ministry at the early age of 16. I always enjoyed writing and English class in school. I also thoroughly enjoyed reading. While my friends played hide and seek and rode bikes, I sat on my grandmother’s porch reading, so much so that I never learned to ride a bike at all. My love for reading and writing church plays birth my business Gena-Mae Productions where I produce original plays, write, ghostwrite, and edit for others and do a host of other things surrounding stage and film production. Read more>>

Amanda Banks | Artist & Model

I was born in Elgin, IL but grew up in the woods of North West Georgia with my mom, dad, two brothers, my sister, and lots of dogs. My family moved to the South for a few different reasons. The biggest ones being religion (access to Seventh-Day Adventist schools for my siblings and me) and my parents’ desire to raise us outside the city. Growing up immersed in nature and guided by the teachings of the SDA church has influenced my life immeasurably. While I am no longer affiliated with the SDA church or religion in general, I do appreciate having that sort of exposure to religion as a way of life. I love religious imagery from all over the world and have used that as a jumping point for deeper exploration into myself. I couldn’t imagine my life without a connection to the natural world either. Read more>>

Ramar Watson | Business Owner & Manager

I am from North Hollywood California. I had two strong parents who instilled in me to always beat the best you . When you do something always finish and do your best. That has carried on today in my career and professional life. From being a father to being a business owner. It has made me strong and resilient to be great at whatever I do. Read more>>

Tiffany Draper | Entrepreneur & Business Woman

My name is Tiffany Draper and I’m from Huntsville, AL. Growing up in my family I didn’t see a lot of business owners. My grandfather was a mechanic by trade and grandmother was a banker. I watched my mother clean buildings for a living as she was a janitor for 22 years. I knew that I wanted to be different I just didn’t know what I was good at. I knew that I could make people laugh and that I was well liked so I decided to start ,y own business t help bring people together. Today I own a Women’s Empowerment Organization and in 2019 I opened an event center named Studio 53. During the highs and lows of my business it has caused me to be more humble and has been a great character builder. Read more>>

B. Stewart | Founder, Life Coach, and Author

My story began in Quitman, Ga., a small town in south Georgia, a town that nearly borders the GA/FL line. My story is one of love, abandonment, and life lessons. I like to believe that my upbringing played a major part in who I am today. Much of what I know concerning love, faith, consistency, family, consequence, hurt, betrayal, denial, perspective, and perseverance came from my bittersweet upbringing. After the age of nine, it was only me and my maternal grandmother Erma. It was at this age that my mother was murdered and my father’s inconsistency, would become him leaving for good. I grew up as normal as one could have dealt with all I dealt with in my youth. And I experienced a great deal. Much of which I either kept a secret or buried to not have to deal with. Regardless, I pushed through. My grandmother did all she could to make sure I grew into the man I was supposed to. I have used that adversity to not only guide my decisions, but to create opportunities for other young men to not have to face what I did. It’s become my life’s work. Read more>>

LeShae Lavender | Artist

I’m from Miami. Growing up there, you learn that nothing is handed to you and you MUST work for anything you want in this life. Being in that environment forces you to hustle. Growing up there pushed me to be passionate about my craft, to do everything with intention. Read more>>

Anna Kate Cannon | Student and Beadwork Artist

I’m a citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, but I grew up in east Texas away from my tribe’s land and didn’t know many Choctaw people in my home community. I tried to be involved, but there was only so much I could do due to where I was and the resources I had. I started learning to bead when I was 19, and it’s been a really great way to reconnect with an aspect of my culture that I haven’t previously been able to access much. When I went to college, I got really involved in the Native community and have been in leadership positions in our undergraduate Native student organization (Natives at Harvard College-NaHC) for most of the time I’ve been at college. I started gifting my beadwork to friends in my student organization, and even ran a few beading nights and was able to teach some people how to bead. Beadwork is incredibly important to a lot of Native communities, and it’s been really awesome to experience the different styles that are important to people from different communities and backgrounds. Read more>>

Ayana Turner | Educator/Author/Journalist

I was born in Detroit but moved to DeFuniak Springs, Florida when I was 5. I was raised in the south my entire life and that southern upbringing is just deep rooted in me. Both of my parents were very hard working and their love, guidance, and belief in me made me into who I am today. That’s why I think I can achieve and do anything!. Read more>>

Tashena Maxwell | Boutique Owner

I am from a small town in Mississippi called Caledonia. My mom moved us there when I was in the 1st grade and I graduated from the same school. My mother was a single mother until I was about 12 or 13. I am the oldest of three so I had to be in charge a lot. She didn’t have much but she made the best of everything we had, she used to take me with her to yard sales and that was like the one of the only fun things we would do together back. Seeing my mom hustle and work for herself made me want to be her but times 10, she worked for herself after having a terrible accident, but she never gave up and she still made sure we had the best. Read more>>

Kiya Stanford | Entrepreneur & Culture Curator

I am from Atlanta, GA and was raised on the eastside of the metro area in Decatur. I believe that my hometown effected who I am today in ways I haven’t discovered fully. There is always something going on in the city and as I child I was aware of that. Atlanta is referred to by some as “Wakanda” now and I totally understand why. I have been immersed and educated in Black excellence from as far back as I can remember. I know that is not the case for a lot of Black kids around the country. Growing up here and seeing the opportunity people like me, especially Black women, have here has given me the perspective that I can accomplish anything I put my mind to, particularly in business and finance. Read more>>

DJ KC | DJ & Producer

I am from Atlanta, Georgia. Being from Atlanta made a big impact on the person I am today mostly in the music aspect because Atlanta is really just the Hollywood for music. I’ve been influenced a lot throughout the different types of music I grew up on so from people like Travis Porter, Waka Flaka, Roscoe Dash, Skooly, and Lloyd to Migos, Future, Young Thug, Lil Baby, there are lots of eras and people that influenced me. With this surrounding me, I felt like it was only right to do music because I was and still am very confident that I’m special and I have a good ear for music. Read more>>

Nora Benjamin | NXRA VISUALS Photographer & Visual Artist

Although my whole family is from Rhode Island, I grew up in Alabama. (A unique combination to say in the least.) We first moved there when I had just turned five and I stayed there until I moved to Atlanta for college when I was 18. Being someone who was growing up in a place they weren’t from, but which quickly became home; I know what it feels like to feel like an ‘outsider’ and wanting so badly to feel like you belong somewhere. This ‘transplant childhood’ (as I’ve dubbed it) has shaped the person, and subsequently the artist, I am today. Growing up, I would often times be faced with criticism or confusion surrounding my interests or the things I liked to wear (I was very into tie-dye in high school haha) and living in small-town America, small-town Bible-Belt America, sometimes those critiques would separate me from my peers and I would often spend. a lot of time on my own. Read more>>

Kamilah Alim | CEO of Afro Allure and Mossed up

I was raised between Syracuse, New York and Atlanta, Georgia. One thing about Atlanta is that the power of the black community was realized from a very young age. I attended and all black school and most of our community events involved people who looked just like me. We knew people in our community who had businesses and we supported them. Spending my teen years in Syracuse taught me how to hustle. I saw people get money in various ways and it inspired me to find my passion. Early on I decided to go to Cosmetology school at 17 followed by attending the local community college for business management. Fast forward 20 plus years I am still driven to support black businesses and I am still able to make money in the beauty industry. Read more>>

Malliron Hodge | Founder and Creator of Baddies With Business Podcast

I am from a small town in rural eastern North Carolina called Bunn, NC. Bunn is a quaint town 30 miles northeast of Raleigh, tucked away from the rest of the world. It is the sort of town where everybody knows everybody, and at the same time, they know all your business. lol. I was raised on a farm and spent my youthful summers working on the land. We had everything from tobacco to collard greens. Our farm was a place of release and connection for me, however, this is something I did not realize until my 20s. The release came from being able to “workout” the stress of the world by tending the land through chopping or pulling weeds. The connection came from the power of watching a tiny seed that was a spec in my hand become this huge plant that would feed a family. That is powerful. My hope with Baddies with Business is to plant seeds of hope, abundance, support, and love into the lives of Black women entrepreneurs across the world, so they might harvest ventures that flourish and sustain. Read more>>

Lauren Wuornos | Photographer

I’m from a 1990’s blue collar suburb in the Midwest where mostly everyone kept their head down, worked hard, and called the kids in for supper or sundown. I grew up in a multi-generational home with a lot of tension and feelings of loneliness. Those experiences continue to influence my work in its own way. As an only child I often had to entertain myself. From a very young age I was blessed to see the world as magic. For example, one of my earliest memories includes swirling dust particles reflecting like lost relics in the sunlight. That was almost 30 years ago so I think it’s safe to say that part of me will never change. Read more>>

LaToya Turner-Stephens, MBA | Certified Holistic Birth & Postpartum Doula

I’m originally from a small town in Mississippi. My grandmother was a Midwife. She actually assisted with the birth of my brother; at the time my mom was a teen mom. My background and upbringing consisted of me being around birth since I was a little girl. In my teen years, like many people in their teens, I told myself birth wasn’t my calling. But after many years of fighting it, I decided to pursue it and it became my passion. Read more>>

ShaQuita Gatewood | I Am Chosen Ministries Founder

I was extremely blessed to have a village of support while growing up in Indianapolis, Indiana. Even though I crew up in what society deemed as a “broken” home because my mother and father were unwed teenagers at the time of my birth. My home was everything, but broken. My village consisted of my mother, step father, grandfather, grandmother, several aunties and others within my community which are to numerous to count. I am a firm believer in the saying, it takes a village to raise a child. I am the by product of my village. My grandmother never turned me away when I asked her questions. My grandfather supported by dreams in every way possible. My step father made me believe anything was possible if I was willing to put in the work. My aunties taught me to dress like a lady, walk with the confidence of a queen, speak as if I owned the world all while being authentic to who I am. My mother was and has always been my biggest supporter. Read more>>

J-Law | Recording Artist

I am from a town called Thomasville, Ga. I grew up in church singing in the choir and on the youth and adult praise teams. I also was a band geek from fifth grade all the way through high school. I really fell in love with music in 7th grade and new it was a passion. One of my teachers taught me so much, and instilled a lot of wisdom. The main thing he taught me was excellence. I also was a part of the Thomasville Music & Drama Troupe. Under the direction of Ms. Lisa Davis, I was taught how to sparkle and shine on stage. Thanks to these two people I’ve really grown into the young professional I am today. Read more>>

Jessica Smith | Management & Operations Specialist

I was born and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I was raised in an environment that taught me the importance of embracing others and having people matter from an early age. I learned how to listen and deliver on what mattered to others to help them accomplish what they wanted. Being able to listen, having people matter and delivering on what matters to others has been the catalyst behind me being successful. Seeing my coaching and consulting clients be able to see their results and become more profitable brings joy to my heart. Read more>>

Rachel Wasserman | Executive Director, Jewish Women’s Fund of Atlanta

I was raised on a horse farm in Lexington, Kentucky, just five and a half hours up I-75 from Atlanta, where I attended a small, homogenous private school from ages 3-15. In each class, there were only a handful of minorities – Jewish kids, Black kids, Asian kids, and Indian kids who didn’t belong to the elite country club that other students attended – and I grew up with the keen awareness that I was not like the other kids. At the annual holiday concert, they would throw in a Chanukah song to make us feel included, and during Passover, there was sometimes a small basket of matza next to the salad bar, but being Jewish in a Bible Belt city made it necessary for me to spend a lot of time thinking about what it means to belong, to be treated like everyone else, and to honor differences and diversity. My best friends were always the other minority students, and we spent a lot of time honoring each other’s cultures. Read more>>

Nalani Dowling | Artist, Writer, Film Student

I’m from the island of Bermuda (of triangle fame); a tiny, subtropical dot in the Atlantic. When I moved to the US to attend Spelman College, I definitely experienced culture shock. In some ways, growing up in Bermuda was like coming of age in a small town that you couldn’t drive away from. Still, the island felt more safe than suffocating. It provided security, color, and cultural inspiration that stimulated my creativity and love for storytelling. Bermuda was my first muse. Read more>>

Chasline Fontenot | Founder & Owner of Identity by Chas, LLC

I am from Mamou, Louisiana. I was raised in a very spiritual family. Both my grandfather and my father pastor a church for over 20 years now. My faith and my belief in God was instilled in me at a very young age and has greatly impacted who I am today. I was taught how to be a woman of God and that my relationship with Christ is the foundation of all that I do and all that I am. It is the inspiration for my business, Identity by Chas. Read more>>

TJ Muehleman | Co-creator of Standard Co, The Database of Nachos, and Lillian and Nora

I’m originally from Houston but moved to ATL when I was 14. I come from a big “Brady Bunch” style family (2 brothers, 1 sister, 3 step brothers) so growing up with that big a family meant there was ALWAYS some chaos floating around the house. Because of this, my parents were pretty big on us being resourceful and independent. It meant we ventured out on our own in a lot of ways early on in life which lead to a lot of learning, a lot of failure, and a lot of adaptation. It also meant that because we were such a big family, college was something we kinda had to figure out on our own. I had the HOPE scholarship my first year at Georgia Tech, but since I was a pretty terrible student (how I even got into Tech remains a mystery to me), I lost the scholarship after the first year. My parents shrugged and said “figure it out” so I started bartending at night. Working my way through a school as intense at Tech still remains something I’m incredibly proud of (even if my graduating GPA was barely a 2.2). It reinforced those qualities I learned as a kid: resourcefulness, learning from failure, and constant experimentation to see what would work and what would not. Read more>>

Zerrick Williams | Actor, Singer& Writer

I’m from the small town of Eatonton Ga. with both parents, a twin brother and 2 sister. Growing up at the age of 11 I discovered a love for music and singing and would entertain my family.. As I grew u watching videos and different TV shows that I developed a passion for entertainment. I started my first R&B group in ‘92 and had dreams of signing to a major label but that was cut short due to the loss of one of the members. After graduating college at the Art Institute of Atlanta with a degree of Music management. My love to entertain through music led me to pursue theatre because it would allow me to sing and act. This is where my shift started and the pursuit of acting began. Read more>>

Red Summer | Artist, Educator and Hip-Hop Museum Curator

I’m from the South Side of Chicago. I’m from one of those neighborhoods where you could see the big houses and nice cars 2 blocks away from our government housing. I didn’t know we were poor. I had everything I could think of, in my neighborhood. The families in our area worked together and shared resources and looked after each other’s children. I grew up knowing that we thrive in community. That is a methodology that I’ve used in every venture I’ve pursued. I watched my mom work tirelessly and move us to a high rise building with a swimming pool and tennis court, across from a golf course, with lakefront views. I understood that you have the seed of greatness within you and you are the one who determines how that seed will grow. One of the seeds that was planted in me was the arts. My second grade teacher asked my mother not to reenroll me in the neighborhood school, and instead, recommended me to a school of the arts. I was a Theater major from third grade until my bachelors degree from Grambling State University. Read more>>

JaySee | Artist and Music Producer

I am JaySee. I was born in Torrance California grew up in the inland empire, went to school in orange county and I’m currently residing in Los Angeles California. When people ask me where I’m from I told them that I am a SoCal girl through and through. I have moved over 14 times in my life and living in all of these different Cities has really broadened my perspective on how different people see life. As an artist I’ve been around people in different economic situations and with different beliefs and I really bring all of that into my music. I have a song titled “SoCal Girl” where I talk about the overwork culture at Southern California and how the cost of living keeps going up and we are all “Losing sleep and dollar bills for a living where we are”, how the traffic is always getting thicker no matter how many lanes they add, and how “ The night is so much brighter in the LA moon“. Read more>>

Khalil Freeman | Clothing Designer

I’m from the Southside of Atlanta. My mom raised me & my sister, we were all we had. My sister & I seen my mom work so hard to make sure we were good & she always put us first so it’s only right I give her the world. Read more>>

Isis Mayfield | Photographer

I am from Sandy Springs, Georgia! I would say that my background impacted who I am today by it being filled with many experiences where I was allowed to be creative or see other people be creative. My mother is a creative person and she raised me in a way where I could experience many different kinds of things. She took me to many art-related events and showed the many parts of Atlanta. Also in high school, I took photography classes for 3 years and from there, I started to build my passion for photography. Read more>>

Mara Naomi | Model | Actress

I was born in Birmingham and raised between Birmingham and Boligee, Alabama. The impact of being raised in the city and country was amazing and influential. Living in country taught me to be patient and aware of my surroundings, to appreciate the small and simple things. And most importantly survival skills. The city life provided me dedication, motivation and endurance. Read more>>

Kiara Johnson | Educator & Entreprenuer

I was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida with my mom and older sister. Being that we grew up in a single income house times were tough. We didn’t receive government assistance because my mother made just above the qualifying amount so you could imagine the struggle. But being poor is going to teach you 2 things, how to be humble and how to hustle. And those are 2 traits that caused me to be the person I am today. I know what it means to have to make something shake from very little and how to share and give when you do get up. Read more>>

JoJo Martin | Artist, Songwriter, Vocal Arranger, Kidney Disease and Organ Donor Advocate

I am from Monterey, CA. Six kids total! Five boys and one girl. I am the fifth boy! Growing up a PK all I did was sing in church. I went on my first tour in the 8th grade. My upbringing had everything to do with who I am today. Both of my parents sang and my mother vocal trained us all. When I thought I just wanted to play drums, she pushed me to sing and then pushed me to play piano! That’s the type of household I grew up in and I’m extremely grateful!. Read more>>

DeeMacko | Music Producer

I was born in Mobile, Alabama, but I was raised in Atlanta, GA, so you can technically say I’m from ATL. I come from a family of educators. Currently my Dad does insurance and my mother works in the school district. Even though we are all in different avenues of income, the one thing that always brings together is music. With that being said, my mother and father both instilled different genres of music within me, so I use that as motivation to create a sound unheard of that combines different genres and samples that you wouldn’t think a lot of music producers would make. Read more>>