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Natural Awakenings Naples and Fort Myers

Reader Spotlight

Work: Program manager for Community Education at Goodwill Industries SWFL

Proudest Achievement: I began my career with Goodwill SWFL in 2013 as accounts payable coordinator. I learned about the mission services offered to the community and I wanted to be more involved. In 2016, I became the coordinator of MicroEnterprise and started working with participants who were changing the direction of their lives to be more independent and create a legacy for their children by completing the MicroEnterprise program. In 2018, I was promoted to program manager of Community Education. My goal since then has been making the communities we serve aware of the MicroEnterprise program and services offered at Goodwill SWFL which can enhance an individual’s life by them becoming more self-sufficient through entrepreneurship.

Expectations for the future: The MicroEnterprise Institute is in its 12th year of offering six- week training program in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades Counties. To date, 983 individuals have graduated from the program that has resulted in more than 500 business started/strengthened. I want to continue to expand and grow the program and reach those individuals that have a passion or hobby that they can turn into a business to create opportunities for them and their families.

Favorite Websites: is a great resource for the community to locate all our retail stores for job opportunities, donations, partner agencies and the programs and services available to the community. It includes the schedule of MicroEnterprise classes in each of the counties we serve.

Favorite thing about Natural Awakenings: The magazine has wonderful articles on health and wellness that all ages can benefit from. The most recent article I read was about Earthy Day celebration and all the ways we can make little changes which will have positive impact on our planet.

Where I pick up my copy of Natural Awakenings: I read Natural Awakenings online. 

Most frequented healthy food restaurants: I am always on the run, but when I am in Collier County, I stop by and get a pressed organic juice and a healthy snack at Juicelation, in Naples. Alexandra, who graduated from our program in 2014, opened Juicelation, which serves cold pressed, organic, juices smoothies, bowls and raw desserts.

How I support my community: Every opportunity I have, I am sharing the successes of the MicroEnterprise program and highlighting the businesses in the community that were started and strengthened after taking the class, connecting resources to our clients about opportunities to grow their businesses and educational workshops for small business.

Favorite inspirational quote: “The decisions we make, dictate the life we lead,” ~ Unknown.

What I am doing to be the change I want to see in the world: My parents instilled in me to always treat people with respect and kindness, regardless of economic status. I’m helping to educate and assist people in developing their fullest potential. I never judge. I listen first.