I started as a very opinionated and vocal young lady. I was told that I had the gift of gab. I decided to use this thing that I saw as a gift to help someone. I have had the opportunity to teach thousands of students while instilling confidence simultaneously. I’ve used my voice to speak up for youth, wives, and preacher’s kids. I believe that there is still so much to be said and done. I am where I am today because of the special people in my life that push me to do something greater. My family means the world to me and I want them to look up to me and call me blessed. Experiencing my own transitions of life has brought me to a place of helping others. I want to continue to be the voice and GPS to help others navigate through life with confidence. I am now a Transitional Life and Confidence Coach and I am extremely passionate about what I do.
Buzz Magazine Miami
Twelve years ago we lost our 10-month-old son to gun violence in 2008. In 2011 we started our Non-profit Derrick Danzel Days II Corporation named after our son. Our mission was to create something that would impact millions of people. We didn’t want his death to be just another statistic. We specialize in community outreach, business consulting & gun violence awareness.
I’ve been writing for years. I started at a young age. I wrote down any and everything that would come to mind, like daily journaling or a Dear Diary. In my adolescent years, I was very soft-spoken. Writing was my voice. I would write about how my day went, how I felt and even jot down my ideas and goals.
In highschool, Language arts was where I truly developed my love for writing eventually turning my work into poetry. It allowed me to broaden my vocabulary and become educated on the different techniques to writing. While reaping each skill, I was able to take my writing to a different level and produce masterpieces that labeled me as an author.
My business started as a hobby, which I can honestly say it’s my passion. When I was younger I would love to watch YouTube “DIYs” and try to redesign all of my older clothes, just for fun. I never really thought much of it, it was something I was doing in my free time because I enjoyed seeing how I could take an old pair of jeans and completely transform them. While I was in high school I would design/customize clothes for others, but never thought of it as a business, at that point it was just something I was good at doing. As I got older I tried working several jobs, I worked at starbucks twice, and I also worked at dunkin donuts for a few months, neither jobs worked out for me. I had the worst luck when it came to finding a good working environment! My parents gave me the courage I needed to see how unfairly I was being treated on my last job, and I quit. Once I quit I began to put all my energy into my business leading me to where I am today!
My name is Odette, and I am Cuban.
I came to this country some years ago, with the dream of studying and working.
In my previous life, I was a professor of English and translator at a university. When I got to the US, the entrepreneurial bug bit me.
I have a wonderful family and incredible friends who inspire me to be the best version of myself.
I’m a small town girl. I was born and raised in Crystal River, Florida. After graduation, I took a giant leap and moved to the BIG city of Atlanta, Georgia where I attended Morris Brown College. I was an Accounting major and I had every intention of becoming a CPA until I got to my senior year. Somewhere along the way, I lost the love and zeal for Accounting. However, I am a number’s girl, so I didn’t want to veer too far from Accounting. In 1997, after moving back to Florida, I met a friend who referred me to a Brokerage firm. This was the start of my career in Financial Services. I started at the firm as a Customer Service Representative and ended it after 16 years as a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™. It was an amazing journey and a great company to work for. But after 16 years, I got the “itch” to go out and start my own business. I wanted a business where I could do some of the same work, but serve a different demographic. I wanted to work with more women and minorities. That lead me to where I am today. I am the Founder and President of AMES Financial Solutions. AMES Financial is a virtual comprehensive financial planning firm. I offer a litany of services, including Cash Flow Management, Retirement Planning, and Risk Management, just to name a few. Although, I am the Founder of my firm, I always say it’s a legacy. I call it a legacy because AMES is an acronym for my deceased grandmothers–Ada, Mary, Elizabeth and Sarah. I am their legacy and I often share stories about their education and how they handled their finances.
Growing up I would always watch YouTube, this is something that I really enjoyed as a kid, and even to this day. When I would watch these YouTuber’s I never really thought that I would try to start a YouTube channel. At a time I started to talk with all of my brother’s about possibly starting a YouTube channel myself, they loved the idea and really pushed me to do it and have been there every step of the way. My mom, April has also been a person who has been by my side this whole time and helps me in anyway possible and supports me all the way. I could not have a better family by my side when trying to start something. When we got the idea together, I thought it would be amazing to start a channel where I went “One on One” with athletes, celebrities, media personalities, influencers and more. When I talk about being “One on One”, it can mean just an interview, on the basketball court, or just something that the interviewee likes to do.
From there I started to put things into reality, I started by filming my whole YouTube preview in Miami, and started to record a couple of my first videos. With one of my brothers David “Mookie” Mariotti being an athlete business manager, it really had helped me a lot, and is still helping to this day. The first two videos that I filmed was a video with Kobi Simmons, and Derrick Jones Jr., and I started to really enjoy this immediately.
From there I have been continuing to build my brand and put out videos on YouTube. This is something that I truly love to do, I love to learn about peoples lives and how they got to the spot they are, and how they do it. Although I love the interviewing, I also like to do vlogs of my life, because sometimes it can be very interesting.
During my Senior year of college I decided that I wanted to graduate with more than just a degree. I wanted to create something that was totally mine, and so my journey into becoming my own boss began.
One day while hanging out with my best friend, I was expressing to her how frustrating it was to find a particular lounge wear outfit that fit my body type. Half jokingly, she encouraged me to create my own company, so I did. Some Sugar Some Spice, LLC was birthed. Once celebrating my graduation from college was over, I jumped into my business head first. However, as life would have it, not only was I birthing my business, I would also be giving birth to a handsome son, as I would soon find out. Although I was excited, the reality of being a recent graduate with high dreams and goals almost immediately set in. I thought, “how am I gonna run a business while juggling being a mother?”. My hunger for entrepreneurship and the consistent encouragement from my support system would not let me get down about it. I decided to blog my way through it and Melanin Mom Boss was born.
Melanin Mom Boss was created as an outlet for me to be able to share my experiences as business owner, mother, and woman. This endeavor has also allowed me to connect with a community of mom bosses who encourage and support each other.
My story in a nutshell: when I was six months old, my father tried to kill me; he broke my leg and my arm and I was taken away from my family. I was put in traction for six months, and, during the most vulnerable part of my childhood–when I needed human warmth and comfort the most–I received none.
I was adopted by wonderful people who provided all the love I needed. However, the psychological damage to myself (and to my self esteem) had devastating consequences for the following twenty years of my life.
And, although I was never in trouble with the law, and miraculously never got involved in drugs, I did end up abusing alcohol and grew into an angry, defiant, and rebellious young man. I hated school, I was filled with rage and emotions I didn’t understand, and, of course, I was a loner.
My salvation was delivered through my love for animals. As a ranch hand, I got to work with all types of animals that taught me about trust and patience. Later on, I became a dog groomer, learning a new skill for calm. I was finally ready to recognize and accept opportunities,
Most people can only guess at the moment when their life path changed. I, however, know the exact day my life completely turned around. It was my 30th birthday, January 17th, 2019. On that pivotal day, a friend had invited me to come along to a live taping of a well-known local podcast. Among the other guests enjoying this show were the hosts of Orlando’s celebrated web series KISS MY ART, the artist Marla E and gallerist Boris Douglas Garbe. At one point during the program, questions were fielded from the audience, and, when I got my chance to speak, not only did I feel comfortable and happy, I discovered that I was actually funny and got some laughs from the audience.
Marla E and Boris approached me after the show, convinced that I would be a successful podcast host. Those two worked to make a start for me–Marla, my great advocate, having convinced Boris to produce a podcast for me that would be tailored to my unique talents and that would catapult me into the Orlando arts scene. That’s how THE EXPERIENCE WITH CHRIS FIO was born!
I started my business at 13 years old. I licensed L Khanna Productions, LLC at 17 but by that time I had already served over 30 clients with my videography and media marketing services. At 18 years old, I am grateful for the steps throughout my life that got me here. I went to a local public middle school that was audition only. But it wasn’t like anything you would expect a public school to provide. It had green screens, professional equipments, a fully equipped TV studio, even its own radio show that broadcasted locally. These assets gave me the confidence to start using my talents for organizations. Some of my first clients were nationally-recognized non-profit organizations that turned into private clients and most recently a very promising entrepreneur.