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About Me


Tanea Smith in Essence magazineThe year was 1975. Bell bottoms and platforms were in vogue, Labelle & Earth Wind & Fire were dominating the charts, and doctors went on strike in the United States for the first time ever. But proof that you can’t count a good girl out, yours truly came into the world early one July morning. See why you’ve GOT to believe in miracles??


Once upon a time I thought I wanted to be…
An Academy Award Winning Actress.

Lights, Camera, Action. . . but mostly starving??
Um, yeah. No thanks!

And then at the age of 19 I became a Mom…
And it changed the course of my life forever. 19 years later I’m walking the walk and so very proud that I can talk the talk. About the good, the bad and oh yes, the ugly too! And like my shero Dr. Maya Angelou, “I wouldn’t take nothing for my journey now.”


Here are 10 things I know for sure:

1. My children are the great loves of my life. Without them I don’t know where I’d be. I knowww, every mother says that. But I really mean it.
2. God is always in the details. Always.
3. At the age of 9 I realized that I had the gift of connecting with people.
4. Believing in yourself is not some of it. It’s ALL of it.
5. Sometimes the only way that I can move forward is to take a step back.
6. Adversity is one of my best friends. I’m at my absolute best when my back is against the wall. Yup, true story.
7. You create your OWN reality. It starts in your mind & your heart.
8. Talent means nothing if you don’t put in the work.
9. Clarity is the key. Every effort you make will be futile if you’re not clear on why you’re doing what you’re doing.
10. The 2 smartest words ever said to me were “Follow. Through.”


In 2007 I founded She’s Got Papers, my lifestyle stationery company.
From the outset I was clear that I needed to create something innovative and out of the box. Through these whimsical, quirky, boldly beautiful designs I wanted my voice to be heard. What better way than to share the experiences of my life through art & words. The downfalls and triumphs, hardships & miracles, and all of the adversities and unspeakable blessings in between. Though the pieces in the collection were like food to the soul and resonated deeply with my target market I knew I wanted to do more. I felt an undeniable yearning in my spirit to use the gift of speech that I was born with. And so I stepped out and began to tell my story. From the moment I walked onto the stage I felt like I was “home”. I’d found my sweet spot! I can’t tell you how rewarding it is to stand amongst the perceived underdogs, the young mothers, the aspirers who find themselves stuck between dreaming and doing, and so many other women who are in various phases of transition in their lives. And what an awakening it is as they begin to feel, relate and know that I get them because I have been where they are. I went from being a teenage Mom on welfare to an 18 year run in Corporate America to running a thriving business and appearing in national magazines. They see proof that they too can change their reality. It gives me great joy to enlighten & inspire others with my words & example. You see, I truly believe that walking the walk is hardest part therefore we are all a work in progress. I feel so honored and blessed that I’ve found my calling in life. And that is to SPEAK.


And . . . I get to eat!


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