Today we’d like to introduce you to Erika Obando.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Erika. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I come from a very traumatic story which I shared on a Tedx Stage last year. It was the intimate account of my life’s story of resiliency and perseverance titled “When Breaking Points Lead To Empowerment”.
I came to the U.S. as an immigrant when I was 5 years old and faced unimaginable experiences and hardships throughout my childhood. As a result, I’ve lived on my own since I was 14 years old and it has been quite the unbelievable experience. But my childhood, however difficult it was, has become the solid base of who I am today and who I will continue to strive to be.
In my professional life, I have thrived on being a serial entrepreneur. I had many careers in my life from Paralegal for 17 years to Interior Designer for 9 years to run my own Media Management company for small businesses. But about 3 years ago, my public speaking career began after I was nominated to share my story at a women’s group in Boca Raton. I’ve embarked on the journey of using my life and my voice to help inspire and influence audiences nationally and internationally on multiple levels.
I currently wear many professional hats: I am an Account Executive at Sinclair Broadcast Group; The host of the entertainment segment, “Panorama Latino” airing on Azteca 48 Network which focuses on highlighting businesses and people making a difference in their community; and I travel the world as an influential speaker sharing speeches and workshops on how to use adversity as a tool for empowerment.
As a speaker and a public figure, I focus my efforts on women empowerment, youth enrichment and advocating living a life of purpose through the art of reinvention. I went from broken child to empowered Woman and I have made it my life’s mission to help others in similar situations, find inner peace, forgiveness and ultimate strength in the most difficult of experiences. Through my story, I give the tools of succeeding at life instead of becoming a victim of it.
Has it been a smooth road?
My road has been far from smooth. To the contrary, my life has had multitudes of obstacles that would have been the perfect excuse to give up at every step of the way.
However, since I was a young adult, I learned to transform my struggles into fuel to move forward. Living on my own at 14 years old was very difficult. I had to learn how to play the role of an adult and pay rent, bills, and provide a life for myself. Then in the same breathe, I also played the role of a teenage kid and kept myself in school and maintained my grades so I can graduate one day.
Sometimes we tend to look at difficulties in our lives as negatives when in reality, those difficulties teach us strength, endurance, and creates an inner fighting grit that can’t be taught anywhere. Failing over and over again is part of the journey to succeeding! There were many times when low finances, limited education, or lack of experience could have prevented me from achieving my goals. But, for however cliche this saying may be, it is absolutely true! “When there’s a will, there’s a way.”
I never allowed anything to become a deterrent. When I would come across a roadblock, I would strategize a way to get over it or around it but nonetheless still on track to reaching my goal. No matter what you set your mind to, if you are really hungry for it, you will figure out a way to achieve it!
We’d love to hear more about your business.
I’ve been very lucky to come from multiple professions as it allotted me so much diversity in my learning exposure. In the legal field, I was responsible for writing and proofreading thick, large briefs as well as translating legal documents from English to Spanish. In that process, I understood the power of writing, expression and communication and it has become one of my keynote skills when I am composing presentations or writing my own book – Without A Voice.
When I worked in the Interior Design industry, I learned the art of composition, and how to apply visual engagements to aesthetics. One of my specialties was 3D renderings of design concepts that would ultimately sell the project. During my time in this career, I developed a passion for technology and design and eventually opened my own business where I was developing and managing web design and marketing solutions for small businesses.
As I now embrace my new journey as a speaker, I realize that all of the skills I have acquired in various positions come together when I walk across the stage to deliver a message. I am most proud of being able to use everything I have learned in my many careers to help others find their purpose.
One of the things that I am most known for as well as what sets me apart from the rest are three qualities: Authenticity, Transparency and Realness. Those that know me or know of me understand the value behind just being yourself which is what I offer when I speak. In a world that feeds off of filters and polished images, I try my hardest to digress into being more of my raw self, imperfections and all and share that with my audiences. It is through relate-ability to that rawness that I feel people find comfort in gravitating towards my message.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Our City is one of the most prominent to start any type of business. With so many cultural affluence, entrepreneurial diversities and worldly investors, it’s to no surprise that we have so many emerging businesses! This is the perfect place to become anything you want to be!
Miami and South Florida as a whole has opened its doors to artists, visionaries, dreamers who have found support and the tools to follow their dreams. With so many programs, organizations and empowerment groups, there’s no doubt that so many success stories come from our city!
I would highly encourage anyone wanting to venture off into entrepreneurship or business development to reach out to the endless opportunities offered in South Florida and truly follow your dreams!
- Website: www.ErikaObando.com
- Email: ErikaObandoInfo@gmail.com
- Instagram: Erika_Obando_
- Facebook: Erika Obando
- Twitter: Erika_Obando_
Azteca 48 (Panorama Latino), World Happiness Festival, Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, Project Change, Women Empower Expo, Tedx Johnson & Wales University