Over the summer, Ford put Black women artists front and center during their activations at Essence Fest, and this past weekend the motor vehicle company kept that same energy at their annual My City 4 Ways event in Atlanta. The half-day experience is a mix of food, fun, music, art, and learning for attendees, and also an opportunity for local Black business owners — the majority of whom were Black women — to showcase their crafts and expand their reach.
One such woman was Fashion Designer Kenya Freeman who not only had a station where guests could purchase apparel from her Sylvia Mollie collection, she was also given a platform on the main stage to to feature her designs in a mini fashion show alongside one of the event’s hosts MC Lyte. What’s more is the men and women who filled the Georgia Freight Depot Saturday afternoon didn’t only have the opportunity to shop from vendors but also learn from entrepreneurs, like International Empowerment Speaker Koereyelle, about how they took their vision and their businesses to the next level.
We talked with speaker Marshawn Evans Daniels, Reinvention Strategist who helps “womenpreneurs and influencers maximize, monetize and magnify their divine gifts with #Godfidence” about her work and being a part of My City 4 Ways.
“I run one of the largest business coaching companies for women in the country and actually Ford is one of my clients,” Evans Daniels explained. “Ford has brought me into their headquarters to speak to their sales team about embracing disruption and what I love about Ford is their passion and commitment to women minority entrepreneurs. I’m a recipient of that as a contract holder but also an advocate for that because there are a lot of companies that do great work but we don’t always find out about it.”
The Believe Bigger author is also an advocate for women business owners. “I have a specific mission right now to help women become millionaires. There’s a lot of fluff on Instagram and on social media, but at the end of the day, likes are not checks. We’re really teaching women how to make legacy businesses not just Insta-businesses because a recession is coming and most of us look good online but we’re not prepared for what’s coming offline.”
If you’re wondering what separates Evans Daniels from similar business owners in the space, the answer is Godfidence. “One of the unique things about my company is that we are a very faith-centered, for profit, multi-million dollar company,” she shared. “I wanted to show women that you can be a believer and you can be highly successful because women in general struggle with money.”
She added, “Confidence is believing in yourself, Godfidence is believing in who God has already said you are and operating with that as a certainty of fact. So seeing things the way he sees. Seeing yourself, seeing life, seeing possibility and opportunity and going towards it because you’re more than worthy and you’ve been born more than enough.”
Those same good vibes permeated throughout the atmosphere whether guests were listening to performances by Elle Varner and LeToya Luckett, dancing to music by DJ Hourglass, creating artwork, snapping pictures at the photo booths, tasting treats by Chef Tanya Chavis, or participating in the Ford Ride & Drive which featured the latest lineup of vehicles, including the 2019 Mustang GT and 2019 Expedition. Check out photos of the festivities on the next few pages.