Tiffany Mack Fitzgerald is a native of Oakland, California, mother of three active teens and surrogate parent to many. Tiffany is an alumna of Grambling State University and has served in many roles in Corporate America. She started a consulting firm in 2001 where she assisted small businesses with marketing and public relations. She formerly worked in Public Relations and Government Affairs for one of the largest employers in the Quad City region.
Tiffany enjoys the game of golf. As she became a more experienced golfer, she noticed how few Black women were involved in the sport. As a result of the need, Tiffany founded Black Girls Golf, LLC in order to share her experience as a golfer and help other women experience the rewards of the game. Black Girls Golf is headquartered in Metro Atlanta with new chapters being established in other major metros in 2015.
Read below to learn more about Tiffany and her Black Girls Golf (BGG) Movement!
Taking with me the lessons Grambling taught me, I landed in corporate America not fully aware of what it took to be successful there and what I had to sacrifice to remain there. There was a time when my children were asleep when I left in the morning and asleep when I got home at night. I was trying to work hard and climb the corporate ladder. Then, I was downsized. I realized that in order to control my own destiny and be there to tuck my kids in at night, I had to create something for myself; but I wanted to create something that would help people who looked like me.
2. Why did you start BGG?
Most of the time I spent in corporate America was me on the outside trying to figure out how to get in. I wanted to be on the more visible project the summer interns were getting. I wanted to be on a first name basis with executives. I got to work early, left late, and I worked really hard but I was still called the black girl in marketing. They didn’t even know my name, yet the young, white male interns were on a first name basis with management. I quickly figured out they were able to spend informal, one-on-one time with management on the golf course. Guess who wasn’t there? Me and all the other black women who thought working hard was enough.
When management asked, “who wants to go hit balls” I wasn’t able to go. When they needed a spot filled on the company foursome, I couldn’t’ volunteer. I didn’t play golf. Once I started playing, I realized how few women were on the golf course, and even fewer black women. In corporate America, there are those who golf, and those who don’t. Too many black women are on the outside looking in because they don’t play. I want to change that. I created BGG to introduce women, specifically black women, to a game that has multiple benefits – personal and professional.
5. What advice would you give aspiring entrepreneurs?
The best advice I can give anyone is to move in the direction of the life and/or business you want to have and the universe will begin to conspire in your favor. Don’t let fear or lack of confidence paralyze you. Fear of failure can be more powerful than your dreams if you give into it.
6. What are your future plans for BGG?
There is lots in store for the future of BGG. We are currently working on plans to establish chapters in other metro areas, merchandise, tournaments, and creating a golf network for female golfers. Our mission is to make golf more affordable, accessible, and fun for women of color.
To learn more about Tiffany Fitzgerald & BGG visit:
1. Tell us a little about your background and what lead you to become an entrepreneur.
I began performing at a young age which led me to show coordination and event planning backstage to magazine editing which led me to Public Relations. My background was one big resume for my career. I became an entrepreneur because my dream job didn’t exist in my city. I couldn’t imagine living my life without aspiration. I take pride in having my own dreams and plans and having complete control of my future.
2. Why did you start Pretty Living PR?
My life’s purpose is helping and guiding others. I was fortunate enough to start a creative career that allows me to do this – while taking part in all aspects I love about my industry. I love to make people happy and bring out the best in them – and this is precisely what I do for businesses. I highlight the good in brands, just as I do for people. I wanted to use my life experiences that I’ve acquired while working in fashion, beauty and entertainment to guide professionals and brands I work with. I also want to act as a representation for female entrepreneurs.
3. Who is your favorite female entrepreneur and why?
I have so many favorite! 90% of my clientele are female entrepreneurs, I work within a constant stream of inspiration. Naturally I idolize Oprah, Martha Stewart and Lauren Conrad, but my real heroes are the women I represent. They are my sole motivators every day. I think what is really inspiring is that we are all entrepreneurs, and when I have my bad days, as we all do, I know that I’m not alone. We’ve become a network of female hustlers, always lifting each other up and rooting for the other’s success.
4. If you had the chance to start Pretty Living PR all over again, what would you do differently?
I wouldn’t necessarily make any changes because I do believe growth comes from trial and error. Everything I know now has come from a decision that taught me a lesson. If I could send myself a few red flags back in time, I certainly would. I would advise myself that my ideas are more valuable than I thought they were at the time and I would be more secure with my creativity.
Furthermore, I would have stressed less! The first year in business was a struggle. I would have loved to be able to tell myself that it was all going to work out and I didn’t have to build Rome overnight. I think a lot of entrepreneurs are easily overwhelmed their first year in business because there is so much to do! But you should really enjoy the moment, have fun with the start-up phase and take your time through each process. Don’t rush to the top. Climbing to the top can be the best part.
5. What advice would you give aspiring entrepreneurs?
1.) Visualize. Create your dream life in your mind, your dream job and your business vision, each and every day make efforts towards this. First acquire the vision, the rest will fall into line. 2.) Before even starting a business, learn to manage stress – because it will come! Make sure to acquire a healthy work-life balance because your health and sanity need to come before your work ethic. The boss needs to be healthy! 3.) Never go anywhere without a Confidentiality Agreement and always add a Noncompete Clause.
6. What are your future plans for Pretty Living PR?
Very very very big plans! The best is yet to come!
For more info about Pretty Living PR and Charissa:
My graphic design studio specializes in PDF ebook design, social media design, and small business branding. My design shop sells bookmarks, prints, and other lifestyle products. As for my blog, I plan to write about the worlds of business, design, and ecommerce.
What inspired you to start your business?
This March, my mother told me that I had to get a job, whether it was freelance, fast food, or retail. I've always loved graphic design and already planned to study it when I go to college next fall, so I decided to take the plunge and do freelance. In July 2014, I opened my design shop to showcase the designs that I create on the side. And here I am!
What was your family & friends' response to your business venture?
They were all very supportive of me. They always are, no matter what I do.
What motivates you?
My main motivator is the passion that I have for helping other small businesses and creative entrepreneurs achieve their goals through graphic design.
What do you do when you are not working?
When I'm not working, I like to read and write young adult fiction novels, walk around the neighborhood, play with my adorable kitten, Bronx, and learn piano.
Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most? Why?
Hmm, that's a tough one! I look up to so many entrepreneurs/businesses! I'll go with Buffer, because A) their service is amazing; B) their transparency policy is fascinating; and C) they really know what they're doing when it comes to social media.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself still running 13 Elm Streets, only instead of just me working, I would love to have a team of 3-5 behind me, including a web designer/developer or two.
Any tips for an aspiring entrepreneur?
Do not give up. Before 13 Elm Streets, I owned two businesses that didn't work out. Instead of giving up on entrepreneurship, I lasered-in on my talents and created 13 Elm Streets. If I hadn't failed, who knows where I'd be today?
For more info on 13 Elm Street:
Combining her success of RyAnn's Closet and the ventures of public speaking & life coaching for women and teens (she was both a featured speaker for the Upward Bound program and the Coalition of 100 Black Women Mentoring Program), Tammira started the Lucas Group with her husband Robert, that focused on both their business and philanthropic efforts in Baltimore and the surrounding communities of the DelMarVa area.Tammira believes that failures do not exist. What we have come to know as failure, is simply what she believes are life’s learning opportunities. It is that very same vein of thinking that Tammira implores that dreams are just your imagination, unless you take the time and effort to act upon them. A woman who is determined to continue succeeding, Tammira M. Lucas thinks of herself as a Mompreneuer on the rise, who believes that with the same faith she displayed in 2010 with just a dream and a vision, that all mother’s and young girls can succeed as well.
Hailing inspiration from Vince Lombardi; Tammira lives by his quote that beseeches “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.” It is that will that drives Tammira to reflect upon her own philosophy of success, which is that she believes “success is something everyone can obtain as long as you are determined and focused to get it.” And, Tammira has been proving anything since being that imaginative and innovative child during her formative years; she has proven that when determination meets preparation and opportunity, one is bound to succeed. With that philosophy in mind; it is safe to say that she is a leader of this generation, a wife to Robert Lucas, a mother to Ryann, a Mompreneuer second to none, and a young lady blazing a trail of her own.
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