Jade always knew what she wanted to do with her life; she wanted to own her company and also be the CEO of that company. Jade began her journey at Bank of America as a teller. She got hired at an investment firm as a bond trader. Later on, the investment firm she worked for was purchased by a larger company causing Jade to lose her job in March of 2009. Before she was laid off, she found herself perusing a fashion magazine and realized that most of the designs did not cater to plus size women. It was after that encounter she generated ideas of opening up a boutique that catered to plus size women. She began taking business courses that would help her get started and six months after she was laid off, Jade Greer became the CEO and owner of K Staton Boutique located at 1007 W 36th St, #A, Baltimore, MD 21211. Jaded believes that all is possible through hard work. Her boutique was awarded ‘Best New Boutique” in 2010, “Best plus size Boutique” in 2011, and finally “Best Curvy Consignment” in 2012. Her favorite quote to say is “you don’t always have to know where you want to go, as long as you are moving in some fashion; Action is magic.”
Monica was born and raised in Baltimore and attended Goucher College. She later transferred to the University of Maryland and immediately began working. She held her first job as a teller at Provident bank which assisted her through college. Later on, she left Provident and began working at MB&A which was what drove her passion to where she is today. Monica now works at Wells Fargo assisting families by managing their investments, deposits and loans. Monica had always had a passion for volunteering and at Wells Fargo, there was no organized way to do so. She took the responsibility to plan events and invited her friends, coworkers and relatives to attend. Through these events, she received numerous calls from business owners who wanted to transfer their accounts to her for management. This venture began to grab the attention of upper management because of the brand recognition that Wells Fargo was receiving. Upper management eventually decided to coordinate the volunteering activities in the company. Because she was able to attract the right people with her passion, Monica Mitchell was allowed to create her own job description which was a great accomplishment. She didn’t only grow in her role; she was also able to uncover additional opportunities to make Wells Fargo’s resources work best in the community.
Jason is a Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley. In college, Jason majored in English and decided to pick up a teaching degree before he graduated. After teaching for a year, he realized that it wasn’t what he wanted to do. He was very interested in the financial markets so he decided to move back to Baltimore and apply for a position at Morgan Stanley. A year later after receiving his licenses, he was assigned to be mentored by a Senior Financial Advisor which grew into a friendship and later a business relationship. At the end of the mentorship program, he proposed a joint business venture to the senior advisor who was very interested. Jason worked as a Junior Advisor with his mentor, which later grew into a partnership, and then a full 50-50 partnership. His partner retired three years ago, and now Jason has taken over the business they built together. Over the past few years working alone, he has been recognized in numerous Baltimore magazines for being one of the top advisors in the city. He is grateful for all the opportunities and assistance that he has received throughout his journey: “You have to pull on lots and lots of threads until you pull the right one.”
Rodney Burris is originally from Baltimore, but relocated to Florida with his mom and siblings at a young age. He relocated to different schools each year and managed to maintain good grades as a student. After graduation, Rodney decided to move back to Baltimore to look for his father, but he didn’t want to tell everyone. So he decided to tell everyone that he was moving back to Baltimore to attend college which he did. He applied to John’s Hopkins and was immediately accepted by the school. At JHU he met with different people and gained lots of new experiences. After graduation, he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do next with his life so he landed a job at Applebee’s washing dishes with a Hopkins degree. He was a homeowner married with two kids, and yet still found his family using food stamps. He became very involved with helping the community which inspired him to run for state delegate. Rodney now teaches at Essex community college, and was elected State Representative in 2010.
Chris Coleman owns Nelson Coleman Jewelers, a family business located in Towson. Coleman Jewelers has been recognized as being one of ten stores that has been in business for over 150 years. Chris was one of six boys growing up in a middle class family, and was born and raised in Baltimore. After his oldest brother moved out, he became the surrogate father to his younger brothers because his father was never around. As a teenager, Chris was invited into the family jewelry business by his father but he denied this invitation and went to work for the Gas and Electric Company. He worked there for ten years and was able to put himself through college. Later, he became a taxi cab driver which helped him provide for his family. He gained a lot of experiences in this taxi cab business, but he knew this wasn’t what he wanted to do. He received an opportunity to work as a community organization advisor the community organization department of the department of housing. When Nelson Jewelers came close to faltering, his younger brother contacted him for a job position. He was ready for a new change so he took the position. He now co-owns the business alongside his brother, and other family members. “Never give up, keep your eyes on the ball and keep moving,” Chris said.