Country of Origin:
Black History/African Heritage, Human Rights & Social Justice, Multiculturalism & Diversity, Adjusting to Life in Canada
Browse while you listen: images with relate to audio
I obtained a degree in Social Work from Sheridan College, but moved into the financial services industry after a year and spent nearly twenty years sharpening her customer care skills in that field. I took an entrepreneurial program in Oakville in 2011, and transferred my social work and financial skills to successfully begin my own business as an image and lifestyle consultant early in 2012
I am the FOUNDER & PUBLISHER SMJ MAGAZINE
SMJ Magazine is an online image lifestyle and business publication issued 4 times a year with limited printed editions and distributed in selected outlets throughout the GTA. We are on all social media platforms. We also have an App, which can be downloaded via Google Play Store and the Apple store.
Awards & Achievements:
June 2012 – January 2017 over 20 published articles
July 2013: Received a Canada Glass Award for entrepreneur of the year.
September 2013: Delivered a Keynote Speech in Ottawa at the “Women in the Media” event for the Network of Black Business and Professional women.
May 2015: SMJ magazine and Shelley was nominated for two MARTY Awards at the 21st annual celebration at the Living Arts Centre.
May 2015: Was selected to be part of a panelist “Making it in the Media” and was honored as one of the 100 Black Women to Watch in Canada by “Infinite” Canadian International Black Women
May 2016: Again SMJ magazine and Shelley was nominated for two MARTY Awards at the 22nd annual celebration at the Living Arts Centre.
July 2016: Selected as a Role Model for the 2016 Black Women Awards – inducted as 1 of 100 Black Canadians into the “National Wall of Role Models” to inspire, unite and showcase excellence and positive image from our community.
“It’s about the Rush I get when I take an Idea; turn it into Reality, something others can aspire to”.
Magazine website: www.smjmag.com
(Blog talk interview I did 2 years ago)
Member of Mississauga Arts Council
Member of Women in Film and Television
SMJ Magazine Interview with Neveen Dominic: https://youtu.be/ejBXXLVa3vM
SMJ Magazine Interview with Celina Caesar Chavannes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qFGGHGC1Nk&feature=youtu.be
This little story marks the beginning of a journey that took me to three continents, from South America to the British Isles and finally to North America.
I arrived in Canada August 1978 from London England, a native of Georgetown, Guyana . My mother and some of my siblings were already in Canada at the time of my arrival.
I lived in the Toronto area for ten years, purchased a home in Barrie, Ontario, lived there for two years, and then moved to Mississauga Ontario in 1990. I still reside there, and looking back, I feel very blessed to have lived in three beautiful countries.
It is part of a larger story of a little girl in one country who later became a teen in a second country, and post-secondary graduate in a third country. This graduate became a young entrepreneur and homeowner, then a wife and mother of twin boys, and finally a widow and a mature executive. I have since remarried to a wonderful man of eastern European decent.
While living in England as a teenager I dreamed about moving to Canada. I studied about Canada and read lots of books, watched films about it, and wondered what it would be like to live there. Some of my family members were already living in Canada, so the transition would be easy. I do not recall comparing it to England; it just seemed more like home. For some reason I did not think of the cold weather; all I remembered was how clean the streets were. So I was sold on that.
I was always fascinated with the French language so the bilingualism of Canada was another attraction. I never got an opportunity to learn the language but would still like to someday.
My experience of being black in Canada is having the opportunity to meet other immigrants and sharing the Canadian experience, while learning about their culture and experiences. The opportunity to share my heritage and culture is a way for me to give back to Canada what Canada has given me. Canada is my home because my twin sons are first generation Canadians. Ironically, I am now married to a first generation Canadian. So I am proud that Canada is part of me.
As one of the millions of people who have chosen this country to be home, my goal is to tell stories of ordinary Canadians doing extraordinary things.
Thank you for this opportunity to tell my story so I may inspire others.