RALEIGH – Saturday marked the 22nd year of the “Women’s Empowerment” gathering in Raleigh and headlined award winning actress, Viola Davis.
Women’s Empowerment was a day-long event that brought all kinds of women together to share experiences and information.
Thousands of women like Toni Allison and her friend (pictured below) traveled from all parts of the state and beyond to come to the annual seminar. Gospel singer and Durham native Pastor Shirley Caesar as well as R&B singers Monica, Johnny Gill and Jaheim were there.
This year’s keynote speaker was award winning actress Viola Davis.
Although the Prime time Emmy Award winner is a very successful actress, she told the audience that she’s been running from what she always felt was true about herself when she was a young girl and allowed a group young boys to call her names and define her as not so beautiful. She shared how her mother told her to stop running and sent her to school with a crotchet needle and instructions to stand her ground. Davis then went on to tell the crowd about the road she took to fame and what she thinks are some of the key points to becoming successful.
“I always tell my daughter what are the two most important parts of you and she says my head and my heart. For women to understand that inner voice, what you are on the inside is what is important,” Davis said.
In her very powerful speech , Davis described how she had to face her truth and admit to herself that she was still running because she had let those hateful words of the group of boys define who she was and it was that definition of her that was blocking her success. She summed up her speech with “When in doubt…when in fear…when frozen…jump! You have to take action.”
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