Local Entrepreneur, Jewelry Designer and Youth Mentor, Nakishia Freeman was chosen as The City of Riviera Beach’s 2017 Citizen of the Year. Freeman is the owner of The Freeman Jewelry Collection, LLC and founder of the youth entrepreneurial mentorship program FreePreneurs. The Palm Beach Beat had the opportunity to sit down with the devoted wife and mother of two to see how she’s handling her new recognition as Citizen of the Year. Here’s what she had to say.
Palm Beach Beat: How does it feel to be named Riviera Beach’s Citizen of the Year?
Nakishia Freeman: It feels so amazing. I would never have thought I would have ever been the Citizen of the Year because I’m just fulfilling a dream. I am not done yet though, I still have so many more young ladies to reach, love on and let them know it’s okay to be who you are. I hope to help change their lives in a positive way, and let them know that being an entrepreneur is pretty amazing.
PBB: What does this title mean to you?
NF: I am truly honored to have been recognized and chosen as the Citizen of the Year for Riviera Beach. The title means that I have been doing exactly what I am supposed to do and someone recognized my mission and passion to reach our youth by loving them, showing them their purpose and teaching them the tools of business ownership.
PBB: Why do you believe you were nominated and chosen for this honor?
NF: I believe I was nominated because I stepped out of my comfort zone. I was given a vision by God to reach out and speak to our youth about the many issues they are faced with on a daily basis. I am blessed to have courageously taken on this mission.
In three years, a total of 67 young ladies have gone through my program. My team and I speak about everything pertaining to life, like bullying, boys, abstaining from sex, maintaining good hygiene, sisterhood, business ownership and holding your own as a young lady.
PBB: As the 2018 Citizen of the Year, what are your plans for 2018?
NF: As the Citizen of the Year, I will be attending more events in the community; I will do my best to reach many more young ladies in Riviera Beach (as well as in adjoining cities and counties) and I will get my girls involved in community activities that will not only be beneficial to them but it will show them that they can do things that help others, especially their peers.
As a business owner, I will be reaching out to local (small and large) businesses and let them know more about my personal story, organization’s mission and how they can benefit from helping Freeprenuers.
PBB: What is your advice or message for residents of Riviera Beach?
NF: My advice would be to stay positive, seek to learn something that you didn’t know before and start networking with positive people that can take your life to the next level. Also, get out into the community and learn about activities that are going on, learn who your elected officials are, and if you think there needs to be something changed, make a suggestion. You never know what impact you may have by just speaking up.
I would also suggest that residents explore the city and most of all enjoy the beautiful beach we have right in our backyard! People travel many miles to vacation and stay on the beach, and we’re right here in the community and can enjoy it for free.
PBB: In your opinion, what’s next for Riviera Beach as a city?
NF: I’m not sure what is next for the City of Riviera Beach, but I will continue to pray that the city as a whole heals, grows and continues to build so that our citizens can enjoy the luxuries that other cities enjoy. I also pray that more programs are created so that our kids have exciting organizations and events that they can be apart of. I would also suggest that the adults in the city encourage the children right in their neighborhoods; it takes a village to raise our children.
PBB: What is the legacy that you would like to leave for next year’s Citizen of the Year?
NF: I would like for the citizens to remember my contribution of helping young girls right here in our community, and I pray that their lives are being transformed because of their attendance.
I’ve learned that giving back is not only good for the people you’re helping, but also good for the giver. So remember, YOU ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN SOMEONE ELSE’S LIFE. I not only want to leave a mark on the citizens right here in my city, but all over the world.
Join us in congratulating Nakishia Freeman!
To learn more about Nakishia Freeman, The Freeman Jewelry Collection, LLC and FreePreneurs read her full Who’s Who feature.
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