Artist, Creative, & DEI Consultant
Kimberly Ming, past Boot Camp graduate and current Thrive participant, values making a living by being her authentic self. Through storytelling and art, her brands specialize in starting conversations around multiculturalism and advancing racial equity. She uses the medium of spoken word to tell powerful and heartfelt stories as a public speaker and is the founder of The MixdGen Podcast, inspired by her own experience as a multicultural Chinese and Puerto Rican woman. Her background in Ethnic Studies and Women’s Studies has enhanced her ability to relate to a multilayered human experience is one of her unique gifts as she helps others bring their story to life.
Culture & Ethnicity as a Bridge
Kimberly comes from a Chinese-American and Puerto Rican background, an identity that confuses the many single-ethnicity people she interacts with.
“People often don’t know how to perceive me, to be honest,” she says.
As a Latina-Asian, Kimberly belongs to many cultural spaces, while also being viewed as “different” by the people in those spaces. That contradiction has not only informed her work as an artist, but also contributes to a greater sense of empathy for others.
In her diversity, equity and inclusion work, Kimberly becomes the “bridge” between people from various backgrounds. She says her identity is like interwoven into her work, because she has an intercultural understanding for multiple groups.
How Kimberly Found Freedom Through Entrepreneurship
For Kimberly, founding a business was the catalyst for her own personal autonomy. When Kimberly started her business 2014, she made the necessary but difficult decision to leave her son’s father and become a super mama, known to some as a single mother. Although this change was incredibly stressful, Kimberly emphasizes how important it was to go into business for herself.
“I remember leaving my apartment [that I shared with my son’s father] thinking I could choose to try to be in conversation with this person that I no longer feel safe with. Or, I could figure out what I’m going to do to support myself, my son, and my family.”
Business ownership allowed Kimberly to take charge of her own destiny, both financially and personally. At first, the practical details of self-employment were a mystery to Kimberly. Thankfully, RMMFI supported her with tactical finance and operation skills. Now, she’s mastering how to make authentic (and profitable) art alongside her consulting work.
Kimberly credits self-reliance in her business with fostering personal transformation, too.
“There were so many times in the past that I doubted myself so much because everyone at work doubted me. Now, I am literally my own boss, so now I’m like, no, I’m going to bring my full self to my work. I’m going to say that I’m a mom, a creative, a multicultural woman, and a consultant.”
Kimberly’s ability to present her authentic self with pride allows her to make her lifestyle her brand. By showing up exactly as she is, she is starting conversations about multiculturalism.
What Keeps Her Motivated
As most entrepreneurs know, it takes courage and strength to show up as your complete self in your business. How does Kimberly continue to make art and money, while still taking care of her family? She says that her past experience as a super mama keeps her going.
“Being a super mama (single mom) taught me that I can survive through anything, to be honest. I use that in my business too. I can survive, and my business can survive and even thrive, through anything.”