“When I was 22 I was told by my employer that I had the highest paying job that I’d ever have as a woman at that company. That pushed me to go back to school and earn a degree which led me to where I am today.”- Lori Heino-Royer is the Director of Business Development at Daimler Trucks North America.
“Since my father’s passing I’ve noticed that I have so much of his strength. On March 9th, 1975 my father, Francis Dada, first stepped on U.S. soil. He was fearless and selfless and determined to make another life for himself when he left Nigeria. He came here and was a janitor at McDonald’s and became a microbiologist and raised 6 kids. I feel like he was my celebrity. Everything he has ever said to me, I hear so loudly still. He said I was a pioneer in technology and he wanted me to reach my fullest potential. He was my biggest champion.” – Jumoke Dada is a tech consultant and strategist for women at Dadaverse.org.
“My parents raised me to believe I could do anything and gender was never a part of it. When I was 18 years I went to Florida to pick up a car from my father and drive it back to Texas. He gave me his car and he also gave me his gun. He said, “You never point this gun at someone unless you plan on killing them.” That was the first time he showed to me that he is scared to have a girl in the world and it was when I realized I may not be as powerful and untouchable as I thought I was or as they raised me to be.” – Deborah Cannon is a photojournalist and lives in Austin, Texas.