Community supports emerging leader on pathway to success

by Dean J. Miller
djmillercommunications@gmail.com

Dr. Rosenna Bakari is a published author, speaker, consultant and UCCS visiting assistant professor dedicated to helping others find and develop resilience. She is a respected community leader who credits much of her success to the El Pomar Emerging Leaders Development Program, a pathway to leadership and civic engagement.

New to the Pikes Peak region in August 2017, Bakari was challenged to establish a network and find community that would support her career change. She had a vision for her future, but it was blurry.

A survivor of childhood trauma, Bakari was on a mission to raise awareness and support for others. Her challenge was to transform her nonprofit work into a sustainable business model.

Her new vision required strong business skills. El Pomar’s ELDP connected her with experts at the Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center where she completed the Leading Edge™ program for entrepreneurs developing new business models.

“Talking through challenges and having experts fill in the gaps was critical,” said Bakari. “I needed smart networking to meet the right community leaders who could put me before key audiences.”

With her business plan in sharp focus and a supportive network behind her, she published five books, was named a Woman of Influence by the Colorado Springs Business Journal and has performed transformational poetry at major Colorado Springs events.

She recently served as a diversity consultant to the Head Start program, sits on local boards, and her demand as an inspirational speaker is constantly growing.

“The experiences gained through ELDP have empowered me to represent the Colorado Springs community – a woman, a survivor, a minority business owner – everyone needs a voice at the table. No one can do everything, but when the community invites you to step forward and serve, you do it. Where we can, we must each find and share the light.”

“Dr. Bakari inspires others to step forward and understand the importance of leadership,” said Theo Gregory, El Pomar Foundation Senior Vice President and outreach programs director. “She is a great example of what is possible when training, network and empowerment come together. It was a pathway to everything she hoped to achieve.” Learn more at: elpomar.org.

Meet the Author

Pikes Peak SBDC

Red Leg Brewing Company: PPP assures staff salary, benefits safe

by Dean J. Millerdjmillercommunications@gmail.com “The service delivered by our tap room staff is the cornerstone of what we built our brand on. We probably have the most well-known beer tenders in town; the staff deserves all the credit for the success of our brand,” said Red Leg Brewing Company owner Todd Baldwin. And it’s a brand with great success: in December, Red Leg celebrated ground breaking of a new brewing facility, tap room and outdoor

Read Story »

Risk & Reward

Monique Flemings made the biggest risk of her life while experiencing homelessness. To understand how she got there, it helps to first know that she’d started working at age 14, earned a bilingual literacy degree at Metro State University in her hometown of Denver, and originally wanted to be an English as a Second Language teacher. Low pay deterred her from entering the field, so she took a job in insurance. Over the course of

Read Story »

A Matter of Service

Despite military experience and more, Robin Bell felt institutional racism was depriving him of one job after another. So he created his own business, began employing other veterans and working to break down barriers to success for the disadvantaged.         Robin Bell has worked since he was eight years old, and he’s had to prove himself every step of the way. He started by mowing lawns and shoveling snow, and at age 11 he delivered newspapers,

Read Story »

Not Just a Pet Project

“I can’t come up with the words — but without the SBDC, I simply would not be. They’ve taught me and encouraged me and guided me to everything that has made me be.” That’s Brenda Davis, owner of Clip-N-Dales, a pet grooming business that’s seen more than its share of challenges in its first year and a half of operation. But to her credit, Davis is no stranger to adversity. She overcame addiction and the

Read Story »
English English Spanish Spanish