From tips on her blog about work-life integration, to taking calculated risks and being heard in business, to mentoring women and people of color to help them capitalize on opportunities, Shellye is consistently uplifting others. As a woman of color, Shellye is a beacon of success for individuals who have traditionally lacked equal access to leadership positions and she speaks openly and honestly about her experiences.
And while she didn’t know I was watching, she taught me how to maintain relationships with the people who matter most. She balanced her schoolwork and professional pursuits with preparing to marry her fiancé and being available to her mother and siblings. For a kid from a neighborhood that incarcerated more black boys than it graduated from high school, Natasha was my real-time, real-life model of academic and professional excellence. Also, as a young man from a place where there are few fathers, and even fewer husbands, Natasha was an early teacher of selfless love and service. Up until this point in my life, I’d never met anyone in such close proximity who encouraged and inspired me so much.
This phenomenon of good intentions that don’t result in the intended impact is pervasive. It extends far beyond environmental issues, from the effects of fair-trade goods to those of charity donations. Ultimately, there are so many individuals in the world with good intentions and a huge amount of opportunity to create change.