Angela Reddix - Envision Lead Grow

by Sharron Hoggart -

Angela Reddix, Ph.D., adjunct professor in Norfolk State University’s School of Business and CEO of A. Reddix and Associates (ARDX), understands the obstacles women face in the business world. After a long career in healthcare and government contracting, she made the decision to start her own company. ARDX is an award-winning healthcare management and IT consulting firm dedicated to improving the lives of the nation’s most vulnerable populations. “After achieving a measure of success with ARDX,

I decided to step out on faith in 2017, and created three additional entities: Envision Lead Grow, ARDX Health Solutions and the ARDX Foundation,” stated Reddix during an interview after the second annual fundraising event for Envision Lead Grow. ELG is an organization that works with young girls, providing them with the tools to create and run their own businesses. The philosophy and mission of ELG is to break the cycle of poverty by developing and implementing  omprehensive entrepreneurship programs for middle school girls across the country. 

We are creating Girl Bosses! Reddix says that Envision Lead Grow was inspired by research she conducted UniversityNews while preparing to complete her doctoral dissertation. 

As a result, my desire was to create an organization that focused on developing the entrepreneurial skills of young girls in areas of high poverty, to transform their communities, their cities, states and ultimately the nation,” says the ELG founder and board chair. Reddix discovered through her research that, “fundamentally, young girls just want to be validated and loved. And when successful adults begin to pour that into these young women, we are able to build their competency, their self-efficacy and their confidence. That’s the ultimate purpose of Envision Lead Grow.”

ELG has set an ambitious goal of creating 1,000 new girl bosses nationwide by 2020, providing them with the foundation to become business owners.

Here’s How the ELG Plan Works

Girls are introduced to entrepreneurship through a five-day summer immersion program using Reddix’s Eight Seeds of Success entrepreneurship curriculum. Norfolk State University was one of four sites for this summer’s ELG training camp. “We introduce topics ranging from banking, marketing and business operations to STEM-related training in coding, application design and development,” Reddix explains. During the second part of the program, the girls are assigned to mentors — professional women in their local communities. Mentors work with the girls for an entire year building on the business plans they developed during the summer.“In addition, once a month, we host virtual training sessions for the girls. We check on their progress and introduce new business topics and strategies.” The final stage in the process is the Entrepreneur Institute. The most motivated girls earn an all-expense-paid trip to Maryland where they spend two and half days working with Fortune 100 female executives. “At the institute, we see the fruit of our labors with these impressive young women, who have fully taken advantage of every opportunity they had to learn during the ELG program.”

1,000 Girl Bosses by 2020

As the mother of two daughters and a son, as well as the daughter of a single parent, Reddix believes that she has a particular empathy for and a connection to the struggles young girls face. “As the product of a single mother, I was, statistically, the picture of someone that society said could not become successful. So my desire was to create an organization designed to empower young girls by encouraging them to pursue their dreams while providing them with very practical skills to help them do so.” 

Norfolk State was eager to be a part of the program. “In order to give back to the community and improve the quality of life of underserved students entering NSU and other colleges, the School of Business offered a summer immersion camp jointly with ELG on campus in 2019 and will offer multiple camps with ELG in 2020, 2021, etc.,” says Glenn R. Carrington, NSU School of Business dean. “

ELG is growing very rapidly. It is expected that 49 summer immersion camps will be offered in 2020 and 1,000 new girl bosses are to be created in the same year.” Now ELG has plans to expand to Nigeria and Canada. “We recognize the value and importance this program could have for girls beyond our borders,” says Reddix, “and we are looking for strategic ways to expand the program internationally.

After we develop sound and effective protocols for delivering our training, we will be ready to take Envision Lead Grow worldwide!” If you’d like to become a part of the Envision Lead Grow movement as a mentor, donor or sponsor, contact the organization at 757-321-1474 or visit envisionleadgrow.org. You could change the life of a young girl who is patiently waiting to make her mark on the world.

 

photos courtesy of ELG

 

Click here to Support Norfolk State University