IN the (#MillSummit) Spotlight: Linda Arrey-Mbi Nkwenti
West African native (and current Delaware resident) Mrs. Linda Arrey-Mbi Nkwenti is a nonprofit consultant, published author and INternational speaker. After dedicating several years as a Certified Life Coach, helping women all over the world find clarity, overcoming personal and professional roadblocks and equipping them with strategies to live a fulfilling lifestyle, she wrote her first book, “Memoirs of a Working Mother”, a self-help tool for women to thrive at home and work.
The book reveals the challenges and triumphs of returning to work after childbirth, battling uterine fibroid, while finding balance with career and family, and loving the reflection in the mirror through an offering of stories, strategies, and anecdotes.
After serving in the nonprofit sector in various capacities for several years, she created her signature program, The Nonprofit Institute, a premier program for potential Nonprofit Entrepreneurs to transform their vision into compliant, sustainable and impactful 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organizations, in just eight weeks, even if they have zero experience.
She has shared her experiences and expertise on numerous diverse platforms, to include the military, women and business conferences, schools, retreats and the TEDx stage. As an unforgettable speaker, she gets invited to educate and motivate through keynote addresses, panel discussions, workshop facilitation and more.
She is the Chief Executive Officer of Women in Leadership Development and Empowerment, Inc., a professional women’s charity serving women and children in the U.S. and underserved communities through physical, mental, spiritual and financial wellness initiatives.
She holds a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration and Business. Among other community and professional organizations, she is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, and the NGO Committee on the Status of Women Globally. As a Captain in the United States Air Force Medical Service Corps, she serves as a Chief Information Officer. She is a member of Academy Women, a world class professional development organization for military women and veterans. She is also the President of the Cameroonian-American Military Professionals organization, a 501(c)(3) charity providing mentoring, leadership and support services to Cameroonian-Americans serving in the United States Military and their families.
She enjoys the beach, traveling and spending quality time with her husband and children.
Don't miss her as a panelist at the Millennial Summit on August 6th at 4:10pm during "Closing Plenary Panel: #SpurImpact: How We Can Create Purposeful Impact Locally and Beyond" and on August 7th at 10am for "Entrepreneurship 101: I Have And Idea - Now What?".
What's the best career advice you ever got?
I was a young Second Lieutenant, new to the Air Force, yet filled with ambition on landing the next best job in my career. My boss at the time, noticed the drive in me and also noticed that I needed to understand the process. Her message was: "Be present where you are, learn the job and perform at your best always, even if you don't like the job you are currently doing." I have carried this message with me to every new job in my career. Showing up, educating myself and putting my best work forward pays off every time. Simply being and doing my best, no matter where I am planted, continues to pave the way and open new doors.
How do you give back to your community?
I founded Women in Leadership Development and Empowerment, Inc. (WILDE), a professional women’s charity organization that provides services for women and children, especially in underserved communities. We organize educative women's conferences and workshops, that focus on taking care of the woman mentally, physically, spiritually and financially. Under WILDE’s umbrella, I also have mentees in colleges through the Mentor-Mentee and From College to Employed initiatives. I launched the "Take A Stand" campaign in 2017, bringing together community leaders and members of that immediate community for town hall meetings to educate, bring awareness and come up with possible solutions to issues such as gun violence, workplace discrimination and sexual harassment affecting that community. Additionally, I enjoy giving back by offering services to working mothers who otherwise will not be able to afford, or simply showing up at the library and passing out hot chocolate in the winter, or volunteering with the residents in the elderly home - they tell the best stories.
What was your biggest break?
My biggest break is a mindset shift that happened when I became a mom. I survived two very complicated pregnancies and was blessed with two of God’s greatest creations. But when I was in my moment of pain, I realized I needed to spend more time living and less time planning. This singularly made me more productive and successful at home, as an Air Force Officer and as an Entrepreneur. The more I started appreciating what life has to offer and worry less about the things that are working, I was able to amplify the many things that are working, while also maximizing quality time with my family.
What advice would you give to someone starting off their career today?
Be patient. In a world of social media, don't compare your one month in business with that social media friend's five years in business. Success takes, work, dedication, consistency and time. You got this!
What is a problem you are trying to solve?
From over 10 years coaching women, I noticed several of my clients have a bright idea to do something good for society, but they are seating on it because of fear or lack of know how. There is someone waiting to be transformed by these ideas if they would just execute on their ideas. Additionally, statistics shows that 80% of people feel great about themselves when they do something for others. Then there are those who decide to do something about it and start a nonprofit to solve a particular situation, but have zero clue on how to execute or properly structure the organization. We need these good and bright ideas to flood the world. Through my signature program, The Nonprofit Institute, I'm offering a blueprint for those who have an interest in becoming Nonprofit Entrepreneurs to launch structured, executable and sustainable 501(c)(3) nonprofits organizations that will yield lasting impacts and transform lives.
What do you do to get a culture fix?
I was born in Cameroon, West Africa and grew up in a family with high cultural values. I enjoy going back down memory lane to my upbringing in Cameroon and growing up in our family home in Jonesboro, GA. I get my most culture fix by listening to Makosa music, cooking fufu and eru, and other Cameroonian meals. I also enjoy spending time with others that foster the culture through art, music, food and various aspects.
What is a fun or little known fact about you that you wouldn't mind sharing?
I have never eaten mac & cheese, gravy or lasagna!