Last night I had the honor of giving the keynote speech at NYU’s 23rd Annual Golden Rose ceremony, honoring women of color at NYU and in the community. Thank you @fahteeah and @nyuniversity.
After giving my speech an NYU administrator approached me & said: ‘When they were reading your bio, I wish they would’ve included how humble and gracious you are. A lot of people let it go to their heads.’ That is the very essence of a trailblazer in my opinion: recognizing that there was a first and there will be always be a next. That person might even be somebody you’ve inspired, who will excel to even greater heights than you. And let’s not be mad at that.
A few thoughts I want to share from my speech last night:
“It’s a beautiful thing to be a woman right now - and especially a woman of color. We are living in an era of Malala’s, Serena’s, and Michelle’s. An era where the youngest Nobel Prize recipient is a girl. An era where one of the greatest athletes of all time can leave her sport, and return just a year later, as a mother - body just as strong. An era where the leader of the most powerful nation in the world can be a black man - with an even stronger black woman by his side, leading. We are living in a time when women of color are reclaiming their time - and their voices.”
“Being a trailblazer isn’t about fanfare, awards, or your title. What are you doing with that title? It’s not about me. It is about how I made my way - and more importantly it’s contingent on whether I pass the torch back. It doesn’t matter if you’re blazing a trail for yourself, if you’re not looking back to guide others to an open seat at the table - and guide others to build an even bigger and sturdier table with you.”
“Once you discover your passion, no task will be too large to take on. No challenge will be too hard to confront. No day will be too long to endure.“