AMENA AMY ADEGHE - ROLE MODEL & AMBASSADOR
TV / ECOMMERCE / ENTREPRENEUR / FASHION
Officially Inducted into the “National Wall of Role Models” on June 7, 2014 ( See full list www.BlackCanadianAwards.com )
Alumni of the DeGroote School of Business at McMaster University, Amena has developed herself into an amateur everythingist. Having spent her years after graduation in TV production for MTV, to Public Relations for Alliance Films to even a brief stint as a professional hip hop dancer and much more. Recent years, Amena has cultivated a career for herself as a merchandiser / buyer in the growing eCommerce realm.
Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I'm an eCommerce Beauty and Skincare buyer for a Canadian Retail website, well.ca, who dabbles in freelance brand management starting with my favourite client, my mother who is a bridal gown designer, Elizabeth Lee Adeghe Designs - eladesigns.ca !
I'm a dancer of about 22 years, it's my passion, having trained in everything, ballet, jazz, acrobatics and hip hop and Now, I still train in acrobatics and occasionally take hip hop classes.
What's your inspiration and how do you get motivated?
Both inspiration and motivation come from my support system. I have an amazing circle of amazing people trying to do amazing things! Everyday I am intrigued by the projects and ideas that they present to me and the faith they have in me. Jim Rohn's saying you are the average of 5 people you spend the most time with.
How did you get to where you are now and what more should we expect?
Where I am is not nearly where I need to be or where I see myself. I have a long way to go and a lot more to learn. Everything I do, Everyone who I interact with on a business level is a learning experience for me for my empire.
What would you like to be remembered for?
I want to be remembered as a hard working, educated, black professional who built something out of nothing and helped other brands do the same.
How do you balance work, family, friends and leisure?
As much as there, isn't enough time in the week for us super busy souls, there really is -- if you use your time effectively. My family moved to Ottawa before I went to university so I try to go there every long weekend, holiday, random 3/4 day weekend I get, no matter what amazing event is happening in the city. If I didn't I would lose my mind, I also make time for myself and my talents and interests, weekly acrobatics classes, dance classes, gym 3 times a week, and then social events in between.
What's your favorite food, book, music and movie?
Food - I love food from my native Nigeria. But I am also not a picky eater at all, my meals are usually a fusion of all the wonderful cultures that have made Canada home over the many years.
Book - A tie between Brida by Paulo Coelho or Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achibe
Music - No real favourites, as a dancer, just give me anything I can move to.
Movie - I'm a sucker for classic mafia flicks
What's your experience as a Black person in Canada?
We really need more black professionals to connect with the Black youth. The challenge starts there, black youth not knowing they have access to the things that are actually available. Providing resources on how they can truly maximize their potential. Many black youths are falling into the wrong things, going down a destructive path, we need to go back and help.
What is the Black community doing right or wrong in Canada?
Not enough support, far too much criticism
Do Blacks support black music, events and businesses?
I would say I do what I can, when I can.
Some claim we have musical artists in Canada that are as good or better than those in the US?
I don't necessarily think its a about being better than those in the US rather than having the world recognize we are, in fact, a talented nation. Many people express surprise at artists who reveal they are Canadian - but why? We are awesome.
Mention a few of your favorite Black Canadian Artists?
Melanie Fiona, Drake (especially in his mixtape era), Rich Kidd and Shaun Boothe
What’s your understanding of Black History in Canada?
As sad as it sounds, I don't have a vast amount of knowledge of Black History in Canada. It was never taught in school and as a Nigerian Canadian I've grown up seeking knowledge for my personal history and knowledge of my Nigerian roots. As I get older I'm realizing the importance of black history in Canada and hope to use my many resources such as The Ontario Black History Society to increase my knowledge.