We’re so excited to welcome Build graduate and Etsy class facilitator Yolanda Curry to our Build team as our new Registration and Recruitment Coordinator! She will manage all the registration process for our Build classes as well as outreach to more aspiring and established entrepreneurs. Get to know Yolanda a little bit more in this Q&A.
Where were you born and raised?
The D baby! I’m proud to be from Detroit, MI.
What made you want the position of Registration Manager at Build Institute?
I love working with people and business ownership is near and dear to me. I share as many resources as I can with aspiring entrepreneurs; people should succeed in living their dreams. Life is too short to settle!
What do you like most about your current job at Build?
Helping people fulfill their business goals, connecting the dots to opportunities, and facilitating collaboration between businesses.
What is your education background?
At the University of Michigan, School of Art and Design, I merged my love of science and art to create jewelry. I graduated with dual degrees in Industrial Design and Jewelry Design, and adopted the title of Metalsmith. I also studied gemology at the Gemological Institute of America, and added diamonds and colored gemstones to my palate. Since then I’ve always been making jewelry, teaching it, or selling it, though I never studied education, those opportunities always seem to find me!
Do you own a small business?
Of course! Don’t we all? The D. The Jewelry. pays homage to my hometown. I’ve been making jewelry for the past 15 years, and creating my Detroit themed jewelry for the last 9 years, supplying to select boutiques around town and online
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I’m an avid bike rider. I love the outdoors, traveling, reading, and writing. My two lovely children keep my very busy as well! We’re always enjoying events around town!
What do you love so much about Detroit?
The history, talent, and innovation! Most of my friends and associates are entrepreneurs, doing great things in the city. The economic landscape is really evolving, and it’s amazing to see so much change in just the last 15 years!
What is your favorite business-related quote or piece of advice?
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
What do you think makes a successful leader?
Constant personal development, humility, and a commitment to help others succeed. Servant leadership and collaboration underlies many successful organizations. No one can do it alone.
What are some of your next big goals with Build, your own business, and your personal life?
Contributing to real economic impact in the neighborhoods! Many neighborhoods once had thriving business sectors; communities were self-sufficient. There are a lot of organizations currently working to revive that energy, and Build is definitely a strong part of that ecosystem. I will forever be an entrepreneur, and raising my children to do the same.