Biographies: BOARD OF DIRECTORS
CRYSTAL D. LIFE, Founder & President of It’s A Girl Thing
Crystal D. Life was born in Washington, DC, and raised in Gainesville, Florida. She is the the proud parent of three children: Kayla (30) who graduated from Spelman College and now resides in Atlanta serving a CEO of The Rebrand Creative Agency; Jazmyne (21) who is a graduate of Xavier University in LA and Jerry “JJ” (16) who attends an all star athlete and a senior in high school. She has always felt that her ministry was to encourage and empower women and young girls. She became a Youth Leader at her current church, Impact in Jacksonville, Florida and it was then after spending two years with the youth that she knew she needed to do more for young girls aged 11 to 18. Hence, the birth of It’s A Girl Thing came to pass. Through this girl empowerment group, her hope is to help young girls dream and dream big and to show them anything is possible if they believe in themselves. Our focus is to help them discover and walk in their purpose this will be accomplished through workshops, conferences, etc. centered around self-development, leadership skills, community service, entrepreneurial skills just to name a few. It is her sincere prayer that each girl that leaves this group feels better about herself and empowered to change the world, by recognizing that she indeed is a QUEEN.
Crystal loves people and winning souls for Christ. Currently, she is employed with the Federal Law Enforcement Center in Brunswick, Georgia.
JENNIFER GRIMES, Secretary
With over fifteen years of teaching experience, mentoring, and educating future leaders of the next generation serves as Jennifer’s passion. Observing the increased influx of students with disabilities in the general education classroom compelled Jennifer to pursue a master’s degree in special education. As a special education teacher, she is dedicated and committed to providing a positive learning environment in which every child’s learning style and abilities are addressed and learning activities are designed to fulfill their emotional, intellectual, and social growth. Through her teaching, students are instilled with the love of lifelong learning which prepares them to be successful, productive citizens beyond graduation.
Jennifer’s willingness to mentor future leaders expands beyond the classroom. She is dedicated to her community serving as a proud board member of “It’s A Girl Thing” organization, mentoring, encouraging, and motivating young girls to discover their purpose, walk-in excellence, and live a life as strong, confident, successful leaders.
TAMIKA SMITH, Director of Community Events
Passionate about people, Tamika has always loved giving back to others. Her drive to help people of all ages and abilities find their voice, build self-confidence, and motivate them to strive and achieve what may have been told or perceived as impossible and make it possible. Tamika has held many leadership positions in corporate and non-profit charitable groups, helping to mentor and train others to be future leaders. Tamika's greatest love and care are working with young people and people with disabilities. A passion that is close to home, she is a voice for them when they feel they have none. Sharing and empowering others is her continued purpose.
CARLEEKA BASNIGHT-MENENDEZ, Asst. Director of Fundraising
Carleeka Basnight-Menendez is an Award-winning Life Coach and your Accountability Partner. She helps single women to eliminate fear and gain clarity so that they can start their entrepreneurial journey. She knows that overcoming the barriers of self-doubt, rejection, fear, and perfectionism will help women to be committed to fulfilling their purpose. She loves serving and impacting her community.
While raising her family and working a full-time job, Carleeka obtained degrees in Biology Pre-Med and Histological Technology. She has facilitated numerous workshops, spoke at conferences, retreats, and more. In her free time, she loves to travel with her family, sing, and act. Today Carleeka offers coaching programs and services - from individual and group coaching, to seminars and keynote speeches. She knows that when you change your perspective, you will change your life!
KATRINA ROGERS, Asst. Director of Community Service
Katrina Rogers is a native of Queens New York, however, she was raised right here in
Jacksonville Florida. She is the sister of twin siblings and the daughter of two amazing parents
Rufus and Marilyn Rogers. As a junior in high school, she was a Senate Page for former Florida
Senator, Betty S. Holzendorf. Katrina became one of the trail blazers for the YMCA Young
Black Achievers calendar. She is a graduate of Jean Ribualt High School class of ’00.
Katrina accredits her collegiate education to the oldest Historical Black College in Florida,
Edward Waters. She has attained a degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in
Professionally, she attributes her career development to Project SOS. Her ten years of service
with Project SOS has given her the opportunity to develop into a well-rounded professional. As
Certified Life Coach, she using the influence of the performing arts to teach students the
importance of their purpose while avoiding negative influences.
Katrina is currently a teen specialist with the Boys and Girls Club of Northeast Florida. As
specialist she is empowering students to become positive role models.
Katrina Rogers is also the founder of MK Communicates an originzation designed to bridge the
communication gap between mothers and daughters. Their mission is create a safe environment
where mothers and daughters are able to communicate freely, respectfully and without judgment.
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