The descendant of sharecroppers, Johnson-Hutchinson says her grandmother grew up in a Mississippi town that still does not have a stoplight. “She could never have imagined that I could have three college degrees,” she says.
She earned an associate and bachelor’s degree in business, and, more recently, a Master of Arts in Education/Adult Education and Training (MAEd) in January 2022.
She credits her University of Phoenix advisor with steering her toward an MAEd rather than an MBA. “I hoped to be able to create an entrepreneur academy for women. I wanted to create curriculum for women who needed to upskill so they could get another job,” she says. “That advisor changed my life. The MAEd was the perfect degree for me.”
She had just begun to gain traction with The Stiletto Talks in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, when her husband’s job necessitated a move to the Phoenix area. So, she started over. It was hard, but she has remained undeterred — and now also has reach into California and other states.
Why is she so steadfast to her community-minded mission, especially, since in her words, “Community doesn’t always love you back”?
“It’s important to raise others up. We need that support. We need people to hear us and provide value to us, especially as Black women. We pour into so many others, but who is pouring into us?”
Here, Johnson-Hutchinson shares ingredients to the recipe for her success, including what keeps her motivated and what helps her save time.