Each year we like to recast a spotlight on the amazing local women we’ve featured in our FACES series throughout the year. We gather and repeat the best advice they treasure and graciously shared with us. So, just in time for the launch of a new year, we’ve compiled all of their advice, and we hope to glean some inspiration and insight to carry with you through another beautiful year. Here’s to an amazing 2019!

What’s your best advice?

Kelly Brooks & Amy Jacobs: Kelly — “See previous answer! Be as present as possible. Try to not constantly be thinking ahead, planning, wishing and worrying. Be here, right now, in this moment. And be grateful for it.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Shreya Mantha, 2018 Women of Worth Honoree: FACES of Charlotte

Shreya Mantha: “We can all make an impact, and no one is ever too young to start making a difference in their community. To make a change, get to know your community and its needs, begin now and begin small. Think of long-term impact. You have the power to make an impact if you put your mind to it and make a consistent effort.” Image: Nilaya Sabnis on behalf of L’Oréal Paris

Dr. Stephanie Cooper-Lewter: “There’s a quote I try to live by — ‘Only speak words that help souls grow stronger.’ I don’t know who said it, but it means whatever you speak and put out into the world, make sure it’s something that builds up those around you.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Pamela Davis: “Raise your hand for new and challenging assignments. Lean into new opportunities. You’ll learn new things, hone your skills and capabilities and get noticed for your initiative and talent.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Fran Scibelli: “A Southern gentlemen once said to me, ‘Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered.’ That was a really great lesson. It was like, ‘Be reasonably priced.’ I’ve been looking at menus lately, and I’m amazed at how much people are asking. I want to have a place that’s considered a good value, and I think the key to being a successful person for a long time is setting a fair price, trying to make a decent amount of money, but not trying to get rich off your customers. That’s how people are going to feel that they can afford to come back one or two times a week.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Bernadette Malian: “Lately, I’ve been simplifying everything in my life – relationships, career and finances. Anything that costs you your peace is too expensive.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Meggie Williams: Have a go-to service in mind that can help you when you’re out of the home. I think people underestimate the amount of effort that comes with getting a pet. Everybody is going to need help at some point, no matter your setup. Be aware of what your lifestyle is, and talk to other pet owners. Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Carrie Cook: “Be present, get with local folks to get the flavor and culture of a place, and try new things!”

Sil Ganzo: “There is always something more to learn – somewhere else to go, more people to meet. Never say ‘this is it.’ There is always something more.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Sandra Lee is a divorce mediator and coach, and she's also this week's FACE of Charlotte.

Sandra Lee: “I believe if each person is heard, given a chance to speak, shares their concerns and needs, is a part of the process of how things are resolved, then they can better live with the decisions agreed upon.”

Felicia Gray: “Be yourself, listen and continue to learn.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Amy Chiou: “Say yes first; figure it out later.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Meredith Dolhare: “One of our RunningWorks mantras is the old Henry Ford quote, ‘Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you are right.’ We really try to instill confidence in each and every one of our team members, and I use the same quote with my cross-country runners. If I need to believe in them before they can believe in themselves, so be it. Attitude and hard work are everything. Really. Even with our K-8 little ones, I tell them they are not allowed to use the word ‘can’t’ — that it is not in the vocabulary. That’s what I have told my children since birth, and it is the same thing my mother told me. For that, I am very grateful. She made me grow up to believe I could accomplish quite literally anything I set my mind to as long as I worked hard for it.
Secondly, I always try to consider what may have happened to someone before they spoke to me, gave me a dirty look, yelled at me. Did he or she sleep on the street last night? Did someone assault him or her? Are they sick? Trust is a huge issue for us at the program, and it must be earned. Sometimes it takes a long time, and that all depends on what has happened in the team member’s past. I have learned so much from each and every one of them and how to work better interpersonally with everyone in my life as a result.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Samantha Eaton: “The best thing you could do for your health and happiness is to treat yourself like you love yourself, make choices based on how you want to feel and have fun with it – life’s too short to not eat or not enjoy foods you love!” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Kelly Finley: “I believe in karma — you get what you give. I truly believe the key to happiness in life is helping other people. I’ve learned that if you put your energy and passion into helping others, it helps you, too. If you intentionally harm others, it also brings suffering to you. We can only control what we put into this world, so make it something that matters and is meaningful.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

DeAndrea Newman Salvador: “Be present. Stop and listen. A lot can be learned from sitting, being present in a moment or conversation, and taking it in to better understand: How those around you are feeling, what does it all mean in the bigger picture, and of course “what’s next?” I’ve found that this can apply to all aspects of life, from personal interactions with my children to professional relationships. It can allow you to become more aware of the small indicators that someone needs help or is uncomfortable, that can otherwise be missed so easily. It also gives you a lot more time to pivot and course correct when needed.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Karen Hill: “Take small steps and keep going. I didn’t set out to open a fitness studio. I set out to walk two miles to work, and I just kept taking small steps until I was running 10Ks, climbing the stairs to the top of big buildings, cycling farther than I thought I could and teaching fitness classes. I apply this to everything I do in life. I start with small steps because those are things I can do today. All of those small steps add up, and one day, you find yourself at the top of the staircase and realize what it was all for.” Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Mayor Vi Lyles is our newest FACES of the South.

Mayor Vi Lyles: “Be fearless!”

You can meet all of our previous FACES — from 2018 and beyond — in our archives. Click HERE.