Interviews

This Queen Does Do Dope Things…Introducing Ms.Ki’Yena B

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Hey hey everyone and welcome back to another segment of ‘Noire Excellence’! So in this weeks edition, I want yall to meet Mrs.Ki’Yena B. She’s a southern gal with who took her love for helping others and turned it into a brand that not only gears toward empowering women but also inspires you to want to do the same. Want to see what I mean? Keep reading… =D

 ATBEL: Wello hello there Ms.Ki’Yena B…How are you? I hope you and your family had an awesome holiday.

KB: My family and I are truly blessed. Thank you for this opportunity.

ATBEL: You’re so welcome! The pleasure is all mine. I’m super pumped about this interview because I’ve known about you for some time now and I really admire the positive image you represent and portray for women. So without any further adieu, Let’s get this started shall we?  Let everyone know who you are, where you are from and what you do.

 KB: I am a South Carolina native. I wear many hats but one of my proud of is being the mother to my 7 year old son. He is my world, joy, and greatest motivation. Before I had my son, I was a published urban model. After my son was born I decided to change my brand for the better and use my connections to help others. I took some time to grow as a woman and develop my purpose. In that time I connected with other woman and saw a need for more women who empower and inspire each other. I made it my mission to be that figure for other women; to create a source of inspiration via my blog and empower them through my actions and brand.  

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ATBEL: Looking over your website, and I have to say you have a lot of accomplishments. You’ve done some professional modeling, you received your bachelors of arts degree in communication and masters degree in the arts of business, a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Incorporated and now you have ventured on to a entrepreneur who has a mission of empowering our youth especially young women. I too have a bachelors degree in Communications as well and it’s an awesome field to be in but what made you not want to go the traditional route of getting a job but in your field but going a different route and going into business for yourself?

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KB: I grew up in a household of self-made individuals. My father owned his own business and my mother had side projects with her crafts. Both of my parents had multiple sources of income so this lifestyle comes natural to me. My father always emphasized if you have multiple incomes to make sure at least one is your own. I have a corporate job in marketing and a sale which enables me to use my degree; however, my purpose and passion are in helping woman grow. I love being an entrepreneur. I grow in both corporate America and with my own brand. It’s very fulfilling knowing I can support my family, enjoy life, and pursue my passion and purpose.

 ATBEL: I heard that ma’am! Dad’s always be knowing don’t they? lol They always give great advice and always know what to say.  I do want to send my condolences to you and your family on his passing. I know you two were very close and I know he’s in Heaven, looking down on you guys and just beaming with pride from all of your accomplishments. Very sorry for your loss..

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KB: Awww why thank you Erica. I really do appreciate those kind words. 

ATBEL: Anytime love =) So tell me about your blog QUEEN.. Why did you choose that name for it and what is the message behind it and what you want readers to take away from it?

 KB: QUEEN is my baby! It’s my blog grows that continues to grow with me. I wanted to create a place people could go for inspiration and empowerment. I featured woman monthly for over a year, however, I’m developing a new platform for my blog which I’m excited to share with everyone. Like I said it grows with me, but no matter what its purpose remains the same. I believe we all need to get into the habit of calling ourselves QUEENS. The world is quick to glorify bad images of women and call us “bad bitches” and people feed into that. Queens of the world are respected. With that respect you have class, sophistication, power, charisma, all of the qualities of a dignified woman. It’s important for more woman to focus on that and I’m just doing my part through my blog and brand to change the world.

 ATBEL: I couldn’t agree more! Especially with this younger generation, they think being called a bad bitch is a badge of honor and being half naked on social media is the best route to get where you want in life and that is the furthest thing from the truth. It’s quite sad really so i’m glad their are women like yourself who flip that negative message and turn it into something positive for young women (and just women in general) to look up too. I first found your page on instagram because Olivia posted a picture of her in one of your “Queens Do Dope Things” sweatshirt and it got like a gazillon likes on it and wounded up on the popular page. Then I kept seeing other women posting their pics with their QDDT sweatshirts and then men were posting their pictures with the saying “Kings Do Dope Things” on their sweatshirt and I just had to figure out who you were because I was like that sweatshirt is ill! & I want one too. lol I was thinking to myself who this Ki’Yena B girl? She is everywhere! So I did some lowkey lurking lol and then eventually we ended up following each other. BTW…I LOOOVVVEE my “Queens Do Dope Things” sweatshirt. And no lie..that was the fastest delivery I have ever experienced. Lol

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ATBEL: What made you start this sweatshirt/Tshirt line with these particular phrases on them? Did you come up with the slogan? Any special meaning behind it?

KB: Thank you! I’m so glad you love it. Honestly the clothing was for my blogs one year anniversary. I had no clue it would do as well as it’s doing. It has taken off and I thank God for that. I just wanted to enter into another outlet and help people get to know who I am and what I stand for. It’s working! Praise Him! Lol But I really want it to encourage women and men to again start using more positive terms for ourselves and secondly be proud of doing amazing/dope things in life whether it be through community service, starting their own business, being mentors, just being the best they can be… that’s DOPE! The world needs more people like that and I love that the clothing can be a part of their story. It’s a truly humbling experience to see the support around the world. I’m thankful for each and every individual who supports!

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ATBEL: God be showing up and showing out don’t he? lol You’re so welcome! And honey you got support nationwide! I see pictures of your sweatshirt all the time and a lot of people here in STL keep asking where I got it from so just know I redirected them properly and that I sent all people your way. lol Now I also see that you do some motivational speaking and I remember seeing some pictures on IG from when you spoke at a particular event. What made you want to actually do that? And why do you think it is important to do motivational speeches because it is not easy standing in front of a lot of people and to actually keep their attention.

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KB: I love connecting with people. I’ve been through A LOT. A very unhealthy relationship, a divorce, death of a parent, suffered from depression, had dreams denied and laughed at, business failures to finding true love, being a parent, business growth, dreams coming true, traveling the world….You name it I can connect to you. When you connect with others you grow. I went through everything to help others grow. When I’m asked to speak at these events, it’s a true blessing. I take it very seriously. I’m working on a project now that hopefully will enable me to connect with others and I’m excited about it. But I feel when you are blessed you should be a blessing to others so motivational speaking I pray it a platform for just that.

 ATBEL: That’s awesome that you can open up about all those things and still use what you have dealt with to help others. I would much rather talk to someone who has been through real life situations rather than someone who does not have any real life experience because it does make you a lot more relatable and now women can look up to you and realize that if Ki’Yena can get through the same situation and prosper, then so can I. So high-5 to you girl for that.  I’m such a sucker for true love and I absolutely adore you’re family! I can tell via your pictures that you and your boyfriend are madly in love and are very supportive of one another and your son is such a cute kid. Is it hard balancing be a girlfriend, a mom, and a entrepreneur at the same time? I’m sure that it is a priority for you to make sure everyone especially your boyfriend and son to get their fair share of Ki’Yena time yet still have time for you as well. Correct?

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 KB: Thank you! I’m blessed indeed with my two men. You know I’m getting A LOT better in this field. Last year pretty much forced me into finding a good balance. I’ve had to learn to find a balance which I think things are pretty good now. When I was in graduate school I was taught to focus on 5 things tops, otherwise things will suffer, so at all times it’s not more than 5 things. I’ve had to learn to say no to things. I’ve had to learn to ask for help. I’ve had to learn mostly to step back and evaluate to make sure I’m not spending time on things that aren’t serving purpose. I’ve had to learn to focus on certain aspects of my career. I have a huge calendar and schedule everywhere always to help me balance life. It is a true process which sometimes things don’t move as fast as I would like but I trust God’s timing not mine and I keeping a happy balanced life is more important to me than having it all and being miserable.

ATBEL: Girl ok? I stays with a calender and a prayer. lol  Those two things definitely get me through my day and I couldn’t agree more with how important it is finding a balance because if not everything else just goes haywire. I had to learn that when I want something and God’s timing are on two different pages. I used to get so frustrated like why is this not happening??!?! But as my faith got stronger I had to realize his timing is perfect annnddd that you can’t rush God so you might as well pop a chill pill and enjoy the ride because he knows what he is doing. He humbled me real quick lol But it is what I needed so I’m appreciative of him for doing it. So what does the future hold for Ki’Yena B and your brand in 2015? I just know it’s going to be something super awesome! And also *side note* I saw on one of your pictures you were speaking in Spanish in the caption (and I understood what you were saying so…*hair flip* lol) Are you half Latina?

KB: Lol I see you and yes I am biracial! My mother is Hispanic. As far as what the future holds, and with everything that took place last year, I am in a growth and reflection period which is so necessary at times. I really want to step back and process things. My main goal is to simply give back. For example this month my brand was able to help Crowing Lupus, LLC and bring awareness to Lupus. I am working on a project that I’m not ready to share but it’s something I really wanted to do and I think now is the perfect time so a lot of my focus will be behind the scene for now. I just want to continue to be an example and a light for women. I want to travel more thing year. Traveling is a great source of joy and release for me. It’s a humbling experience and I enjoy connecting with people from other cultures. Lastly, I’m still selling Younique Cosmetics. I absolutely love these cosmetics and especially our best selling 3D Fiber Lash Mascara so I pray people continue to let me be their Younique presenter.

 ATBEL: My dad’s mom passed away from Lupus when he was 14 so you working with that organization definitely touches close to home. Well I’ll definitely be supporting your new adventures as well! Yes! Traveling the world is a must! I’m a military kid so traveling is in my blood and at least once a year the family and I try to go out the country. You only live once, and God is super creative and I want to see as much of his creations as possible. Learning about different cultures first hand is probably top 5 best things in life. It’s one thing to read about them in a book but to actually go there and experience it is something totally different. With your journey that you are on now,what keeps you going to keep striving for bigger and better things? And also what is one thing that you really want to accomplish for this new year?

 KB: I’m just getting started. It’s a beautiful start but I know God is still preparing me. I’m enjoying this self-discovery and journey. I am working on myself this year with all the new blessing I’ve received and again giving back. I want to do more community service. That’s a huge goal. Also, and I say this daily to myself, financial increase, pounds decrease, and get it down on paper. Those are my personal goals but I’m really focused on my finances, health, and getting things on paper which will make sense to you all one day as well.

 ATBEL:  You better speak things into existence Ms.Boyd! I know that God has big plans for you..just keep up the goo work and watch everything else fall into place. I have to say it has been a real pleasure talking with you but I believe that is all the questions that I have for today. For those who don’t follow you on social media but may want to, let everyone know where you can be found and also where they can go to order their own “Queens/Kings Do Dope Things” apparel.

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 KB: Thank you again, it’s truly been a pleasure.

 KIYENAB.COM – will take you to my blog queen, shop for clothing, and links to my social media sites.

@itsKIYENABaby on Instagram and Twitter

 ATBEL: Anytime girly! I really enjoyed our little chat and I really appreciate it. I wish you and your family a very blessed new year. Keep up the awesome work that you are doing too! I love seeing women out here doing dope things while setting positive examples for others and spreading nothing but good vibes. You’re awesome sauce. Lol Keep in touch ok? We will definitely have to have a follow up interview in the future and maybe even in person next time. Cool Beans? Be blessed love!

KB: If I can help a woman grow I’m there! I will come your way! You know I love to travel! Lol Keep Doing Dope Things Queen

ATBEL: It’s a deal! My pops is from South Carolina too (Myrtle Beach area) so I still go down there to visit my family and next time I do, i’ll hit you up.

KB: Sounds like a plan! Talk with you soon Erica.

ATBEL: Indeed. =D

Well folks..that concludes this weeks edition of my Fresh and Fabulous segment. Talking to Ki’Yena was such a treat and I wish her nothing but blessings in the future. I’m all for women empowering one another and more women should be advertising more positive vibes like her and want to help build up these young women and letting them realize you do not  have to conform to what society deems as appropriate or cool. Yea you might get 100+ likes on your photo but you have to be half naked with a bomb filter to get it. Is your body and soul worth compromising for just for some likes on social media? I think not. We come from a long line of Kings and Queens so one should never act like anything but. *inserts hair flip emoji* lol

Til Next Time Loves…

XO

Erica Leigh

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