Denise, who has inspired you to become the woman you are?
My grandmother Bertha. Bertha Taplin-Brumfield. She was definitely the one who inspired and taught me the most. She had a only grade school education, but from an early age she would teach me to read using the Bible. I didn’t know it at the time, but she actually couldn’t read very well. She just had studying the Bible so diligently and memorized important passages that she knew each of the words as if she were reading them to me. She breathed positive things into my life. Most importantly, she gave me God. I didn’t understand it at the time, but she always said “you need to know God for yourself”. She was my driving source. When I began to earn an income I wanted to buy her a RV, something that she would always want. She would always tell me that every woman needs to have her own house. This became my life’s work.
I wanted to do more for myself so that I could do more for her, my family and my community. I wanted to do everything for her because she didn’t have to help me the way she did.
She also gave me discipline and love and she taught me respect. She was the main positive force in my life always reminding me that “what a man thinketh, he is”. I always said I wanted to make a lot of money but she always put me in check. “It’s not about the money,” she would say. She cleaned houses for a living. Each day we would walk uphill to her job. She sat me right on the counter and I watched her work. She taught me work ethic. She said I would be a star. She pushed me to work for myself and because of this I opened my own business in my 20s. She passed away around the time I started my business. One of my biggest disappointments is that the person who taught me, nurtured me and prayed for my success was never able to see those dreams realized, but I know she is smiling now.
Who inspired you to be the successful business owner you are?
Oprah Winfrey. She came from nothing. As a child she was raped, abused and surrounded by negativity, but went on to become extremely successful. She worked hard to achieve her goals. She stayed with it and was consistent. I was also inspired by Mr. Johnson of Soul Beat. He was a self-made man and the ultimate business man. In the real estate industry in particular I was inspired by Noble Fields.
Who do you hope to inspire?
Young people. Old people. Young adult people. Men. Woman. Boys and girls. I live to inspire all God’s people and to shine God’s light through me as an example of God’s amazing power.