Struggling to Success

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Struggling to Success

Natilie Williams speaking to student leaders at the LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis. PHOTO BY David Letellier

Natilie Williams speaking to student leaders at the LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis. PHOTO BY David Letellier

Natilie Williams speaking to student leaders at the LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis. PHOTO BY David Letellier

Natilie Williams speaking to student leaders at the LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis. PHOTO BY David Letellier

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Public speaker Natilie Williams speaks to student leaders at the LeadMN conference. 

Natilie Williams speaking to student leaders at the LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis. PHOTO BY David Letellier

By David Letellier, Staff Writer

I had the chance to meet Natilie Williams at LeadMN conference on Oct. 20 in Minneapolis.   She is a professor at the Universality of Missouri- Columbia and teaches public speaking. She is a former business analyst. Her mother is her biggest inspiration. She answered these questions over email.

What have you done before being a public speaker? And how do you become a public speaker? 

Before becoming a public speaker, I worked in corporate as a business analyst. While working there, I was also speaking in addition to serving as an evening college instructor. I had a great collegiate experience and would speak at my old high school and college every chance I got. This was an indication that I had a story to tell. My initial biggest moment was speaking at my Alma Mater, Central Michigan University, for their freshman leadership program. After keynoting to more than 250 people and having lines of people waiting to talk to me after, I knew that I had just experienced a manifestation of my gift.

Who inspired you to be an inspiration to others? 

Everyone that has contributed to my life through mentorship, words of wisdom, and sound advice. I was inspired to speak through knowing that sharing my story would change the lives of others. My mom was an inspiration to me, she passed away when I was 13 years old, but she planted morals, values, and life skills within me. 

Where are you from and why have you chosen this path in your life? 

I am from Chicago. I have chosen the path of speaking, because it essentially chose me. It’s a responsibility to be able to be a voice to some that struggle with putting their vision into an action plan. It’s a responsibility that I don’t take lightly, but I thoroughly enjoy engaging with people from all over the world. My gift is making room for opportunities to share my message of leadership. 

Williams is on Twitter and Facebook @NatWillSpeak