We had the good fortune of connecting with Candace Chism and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Candace, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
As current school counselors, Marcie Thomas and I (Candace Chism), see on a daily basis the need for young ladies to improve their self-confidence and find a safe place to share their feelings and work through the process of finding their own voice. The vision for Rising Leaders began after we had organized successful girls’ conferences through our school district in which 100 young ladies in 6th through 8th grade were chosen to attend. A range of speakers were chosen to speak on different topics that were relatable to what girls between the ages of 12 to 14 years of age could be going through. With the success of our girls conferences, we realized that this was something that could be shared throughout other school districts as well as particular areas in the city in which data shows that there is a need for young ladies to have a program that’s geared towards supporting and growing the whole child. Marcie Thomas and I (Candace Chism) have the same drive and determination in working with young ladies and our friendship of over 10 years has allowed us the opportunity to focus on each other’s strengths in building Rising Leaders, Incorporated along side our other director, Krestin White.

What should our readers know about your business?
Rising Leaders, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization designed to create dynamic female leaders for society. We strive to educate, motivate and equip each young lady to reach for their dreams by removing doubt and breaking through barriers. What sets us a part is that we have collectively 20 years of experience working with youth and knowing the current trends. We’re able to address current issues and remain relatable in our approach in mentoring young ladies. We believe that nothing that you diligently work towards is easy. Jeremiah 29:11 states, “For I know the plans that I have for you declared the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Like any other business, Rising Leaders has had it’s ups and downs. However, with a team of resilient leaders, we have been able to overcome many obstacles. We will continue to strive to better our organization on a daily basis with determination and “GRIT.”
As a team, we have learned that if you desire to start a business, all stakeholders must be committed to the work and have the same goal in mind.
We want the world to know that Rising Leaders, Inc. is dedicated to our mission and vision of changing our young ladies’ mindset no matter what negative influences may attempt to hinder their growth.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Spending time in the DFW area would be so exciting for anyone wanting to visit. Hanging out in the Downtown area of Dallas would be ideal because of the variety of activities available in the area. A wonderful restaurant to visit would Tru Kitchen and Kocktails. The drinks and food are amazing and the ambiance is welcoming. Visitors can also visit the Bishop Arts District to indulge in boutique shopping and partake in several restaurants and be in awe of the culture that is exhibited.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
With being members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. Marcie Thomas and I (Candace Chism), understand through our sisterhood the value of serving our community.

Furthermore, James Leggs, of Taylor Made Consultant Firm, as been instrumental in connecting us with community partners and resources to assist in driving our non-profit forward.

Additionally, we are thankful to our faithful contributors who believe in our mission and our community partners which include; Dr. Whitnee Boyd of TCU, Lori Williams of the Mansfield Area Chamber of Commerce, Demetra Bradley of Fort Worth Black Law Enforcement Officers Association and Amanda Johnson of Simmons Bank.

Website: www.risingleaderstx.org

Instagram: @risingleaders_tx

Facebook: @txrisingleaders

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.