Ms. Corporate America Tenaj Ferguson
Scholastic Achievement/Community Involvement:
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
National Black MBA
Full-Time MBA at the University of Texas at Austin, class of 2017
Consortium Fellow with the Consortium for Graduate Studies in Management
Texas Venture Lab Scholarship Pitch Competition, winner and Best speaker award
Forte Fellow with the Forte Foundation (an organization promoting women in business)
Engaging diverse women in business by equipping them with resources, advocating on their behalf, connecting them to each other and to other influential women, as well as strengthening their impact through inspiration and empowerment. This platform is especially significant to me from my personal experiences as a diverse woman navigating business and corporate America.
Creating your edge: The making of the multifaceted women. With this platform, I hope to empower and equip women in business to find their edge. The making of the multifaceted woman is about celebrating all that women accomplish on all fronts of their lives – for themselves and others and also positioning them for both their responsibilities and their aspirations. Developing the whole woman both professionally and personally helps her to unlock her potential, reach her dreams and access fulfillment. This platform is dynamic and primarily expresses the goal of Creating your Edge from the following standpoints: diversifying a woman’s skills in and out of the workplace (to include leadership, entrepreneurship opportunities, building a multidimensional life, developing her hobbies), engaging others using a clear personal brand story to best highlight her, and daring to stand out through a confident overall presence (public speaking, leadership, image, confidence and overall polish).
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?:
I’ve lived long-term both in the US and in the Bahamas and have also visited numerous other countries like Costa Rica, Peru and the Dominican Republic to name a few. Most recently I visited India and absolutely fell in love with the rich vibrant culture there. I was simply inspired by the resourcefulness of the people and the remarkable history. The growing economy and the technology scene impressed me, and of course I was delighted by the amazing food and flavors. India is a constant surprise from its diversity of people, languages, customs and beliefs to its stark contrast to life in North America. I’m looking forward to returning to see and experience even more that India has to offer.
If you could meet anyone in the world, who would they be?:
I would jump at any opportunity to meet Michelle Obama and learn more about her as well as share with her how her presence has positively impacted and motivated me. She’s been a phenomenal first lady and role model for me, demonstrating intelligence, leadership, absolute charm, substance, poise and grace.
Best advice you have ever been given:
Don’t ask for permission.
Lean on my faith for strength.
Who is your role model and why?:
My mother, older sister and again Michelle Obama are my role models. These 3 women have qualities that I personally strive for. I respect each of them for how they operate, their accomplishments, their strong values, strength and the decisions they’ve made that allow them to win in life.
My mother is a major motivation. She’s a hardworking woman who values education and has come a long way from growing up out of truly humble beginnings on the island of Abaco, Bahamas in a large family with more than a dozen siblings. She has beat the odds by getting a masters in Counseling Psychology and being a leader and expert in her field at the University of the Bahamas. My mother is one of the strongest women I know and she brings my family and so many others a ton of wisdom and joy.
My older sister and I grew up inseparable. We were born just 11 months apart, we’re best friends and we have been raised to be our best selves. Tajh has always given me a run for my money. I’ve always admired her for her leadership, strategic thinking and academic brilliance. Today Tajh is a medical doctor – the first in our family. Her work ethic is untouchable and she’s truly passionate about her work and patients. Tajh has been the consistent iron, the iron that sharpens my iron, she keeps me sharp and on my toes, and she’s always one of my biggest cheerleaders.
Lastly, Michelle Obama is simply a phenomenal woman. Her leadership, passion, intelligence, grace and poise are admirable. Michelle Obama represents growth, hope and maturity. I hope to leave a strong legacy on my community similar to how she continues to be a strong leader and influencer for the nation.
Something interesting about you:
I was born and raised in the Bahamas for 17 years. I’ll always be an island girl. I now live in much bigger cities in the US and have adapted to city life. I certainly appreciate both ways of life and both societies.
Three words that describe you best:
Bold, Tenacious, Multidimensional
The book Fervent by Priscilla Shirer. I’m reading this as a resource to continue growing my faith.
Favorite TV Show:
HBO’s Insecure, This Is US on NBC and anything on HGTV.
Conch salad (a Bahamian delicacy)
Frozen yogurt and ice cream (I actually try local ice cream whenever I visit a new country)
Competitive Body Building; I personally compete in the National Physique Committee in the Bikini Bodybuilding Division.