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?

Michele Velcheck: “Bob Goff offers an extraordinary seminar several times annually, Dream Big. He simplifies the steps to proceed from where you are currently to your desired destination. The best advice for me came in two of the seven steps: 1. Visualize your destination, and 2. What is in the path that must be cleared for you to get there? Clear the path. Sounds so simple but, wow, was it impactful!” Image: CatMax Photography

Samantha Dickey: “‘Even a broken clock is right twice a day.’ My dad always says this! A lot of times he said it in jest when my sister and I would say, ‘Dad, look, we got this right!’ Now, I take it to mean keep trying and keep doing it. At some point, you’ll hit the target at least twice.” Image: CatMax Photography

Debra Shigley: “‘Just start,’ courtesy of my Harvard college roommate and bestie Jennifer Hyman, who’s the CEO of Rent the Runway.” Image: CatMax Photography

Lauren Collins: “Something my dad always would tell us is, ‘Character is what you do when no one is watching.’ I feel like that’s such a true statement. You do it not because you want the credit or the validation for whatever it is you’re doing. You do it because you know it’s the right thing to do. I feel like that’s something that I even share with my students and will share with our kids as well. I think if you live your life trying to do what is right versus what you can get credit for, it will make the world a better place.” Image: CatMax Photography

Michelle Carey: “The best advice I’ve received recently is ‘You’ve got this.’ That advice helped me through and honestly, translates into life in general. I think everyone can wake up every morning and say to themselves, ‘You’ve got this.’ It’s your little pep talk to yourself. Self-inspiration.” Image: CatMax Photography 

Sheryl McCollum: “I actually have books where I get all experts and victims’ families to write advice to the students. I have one page where a K9 officer buddy of mine simply wrote, ‘Trust your dog.’ A famous attorney in Atlanta wrote, ‘Laugh a lot.’ A great detective told me once, ‘Know the difference in what you know, what you believe and what you can prove.'” Image: CatMax Photography

Meredith Bullock & Carol Brunstad: “M: Carol gave me this advice, actually. The shop really reflects who we are. When we were buying things, there was a lot of thought and intention that went into every single thing here. Whatever you’re doing, do it because of yourself, and make it your own.”
C: “Be kind. There are so many things you can be, but you should be kind.” Image: CatMax Photography

Frances Lacefield: “Do you! I think it is important to stay true to yourself and follow your instincts. Don’t be afraid of failure. I believe in the saying, ‘You never know if you don’t try.’ I have learned that the way you handle failure is what leads to the path of success. Always be kind and respect others. Life is all about relationships.” Image: CatMax Photography

Sherry Coleman Collins & Dee Wilson: D: “It’s unkind to expect people to be different from who they are. I can make decisions about whether or not I will be around someone based on their behavior, but expecting them to change because I want them to be different is unkind. People will change when it makes sense to them to do so, and the time frame for that change is completely up to them. I don’t think of myself as a controlling person, but when I wrapped my mind around the concept of allowing people to be who they are, that was so freeing for me.”
S: “’You can change your mind anytime you want.’” My mom gave me that gift when I decided that I wasn’t ready to be in college and deciding what I wanted to do for the rest of my life at 18. It has served me well for my whole adult life in allowing me to chase my passions, fail, start over, move on and let go of things that no longer served me.” Image: CatMax Photography

Mollie Burch: “Since I can remember, my parents have encouraged me to believe in myself and follow my passion.” Image: CatMax Photography

Camille Kesler: “The best advice I have received was to not respond in anger. Whether it’s email, a phone call or in person, find a way to give yourself time to cool off. It might be to turn off the computer, do some yoga or just go off the radar for a while. Do whatever you need to do to gain perspective to ensure that your response is one that you can be proud of. And, that you are always true to who you are, not a reflection or a reaction to others.” Image: CatMax Photography

Allison Fillmore: “The quote from Wayne Gretzky, ‘You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.’ Always try. What’s the worst someone can say to you? You never know what’s going to happen unless you try.” Image: CatMax Photography

Lindsay Tarquinio: “Does something that I read in a book count? It changed my life and shifted my perspective on so many things. In Crazy Love, Francis Chan says, ‘But God doesn’t call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn’t come through.'” Image: CatMax Photography

Anna-Carol Pence: “‘There is nothing you cannot do.’ My mom reinforced that in me every day of my life. It made me fierce. We, as women, are often afraid to be all that we can be. We are afraid to speak up. We are afraid to fail. We are afraid to lead. But my mother thought I was a shining star. She never discouraged me from speaking up, both for myself and for others.” Image: CatMax Photography

Magen McRoberts: “Under promise and over deliver.” Image: CatMax Photography

Alyssa Fagien: “Collaboration over competition. It can be easy to look at fellow bloggers/influencers as ‘competitors,’ but that couldn’t be further from the truth. I’m so lucky to be part of an amazing community of women who talk about food, fashion and lifestyle, and I’ve learned so much (and even been able to grow my account) by working alongside them instead of against them.” Image: CatMax Photography

Raquel Souza: “SHUT UP! … Don’t tell anything to anyone until it is signed, sealed and delivered.” Image: CatMax Photography

Stephanie Wright: “My father once told me to never be jealous. It stuck with me and taught me to try my best to be happy for other people, even when I wanted what they had, and it taught me to go out and get what I wanted. Of course, jealousy is impossible to avoid, but his advice stuck in my head and helped push me.” Image: CatMax Photography

Jessica McRae & Kristen Yonson: J: “Trust your instincts.” 
K: “Live simply.” Image: CatMax Photography

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