“Most people don’t listen with intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply”. Stephen R. Covey
NO: Can you tell our readers about a little yourself?
KIVA: I’m 44 years old, daughter, sister and proud mother of recent graduate of Hampton University.
I’ve always believed in having multiple sources of income. Currently I’m a Realtor, Budget Analyst and recently began creating custom designs of apparel and more. I was born and raised in upstate New York. In 2011, my ex husbands military career ended and we moved to the DMV, which is how this became my 2nd home.
NO: 6 words that best describe you?
KIVA: Resourceful, Resilient, Compassionate, Strong, Educated, BLACK!
NO: What do you feel is the biggest misconception about black entrepreneurs?
KIVA: I feel that more than often we are not taken seriously. Some feel as if we cannot provide the level of professionalism or services to be successful.
NO: How important do you feel fashion is to the black culture?
KIVA: I feel it’s very important and always has been. Our fashions are expressions of ourselves, being able to truly express ourselves in a society that constantly wants to put us in a box is necessary. We are very diverse and come in many different shapes, sizes and flavors!
NO: What advice would you give someone struggling with weight and self-esteem issues?
KIVA: Please recognize the beauty that you possess! We were not put on this earth to be the same. No matter what weight, height or shade of brown you are, there will always be someone to criticize you and on the other hand there will always be someone that will absolutely love you, but you must love yourself first!
NO: What can we do more as an industry to advocate more woman embracing their bodies and loving them without the pressure of the social media?
KIVA: Get rid of Photoshop! I love when we are real and proud of what we have. Some of the body images on social media are just false! Our young girls( and grown women) see this and think that’s how we should look. We should encourage and uplift women that show their true curves. The Most High has already made us as a complete package!
NO: What do you want your legacy to be?
KIVA: I want my daughter, my grands, great grands etc. to know that before their creation I loved them dearly and worked extremely hard to ensure they know it’s very possible to succeed at anything they put their mind to. No matter what you go through, regardless of what the non-believers say, keep pushing and never give up!