"Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day. Teach a person to fish and you feed them for a lifetime."
-Afrikan Proverb
founder's message
A piece of her heart
Dear NBLA Supporters,

Being the founder of Natural Born Leaders Academy (NBLA) has allowed me the unique opportunity to use the wisdom gained from my childhood pains. Watching my mother struggle to raise three children on her own while simultaneously working countless jobs had a major effect on me and lit a fire inside of me to overcome poverty and become financially literate ensuring a better trajectory for myself. My mother carried the financial burden of raising us while my absentee father was one of the most well-known drug dealers in the city at that time. Reminiscing on my past, I can’t help noticing the destruction caused by generational poverty. It fuels my fire to help others break the cycle of generational poverty and all the issues that go along with living in the darkness of impoverished restraints.

Creating NBLA allowed me to breathe life into a vision for what I think an effective anti-poverty youth organization looks like. We provide our young participants with extensive entrepreneurship education. NBLA stands on the pillars of mind, body, and entrepreneurial spirit. Underserved youth between the ages of 14-19 are often cast by the wayside, deemed unworthy, and expected to fend for themselves with little to no skills to be successful. In response to this tragedy, our organization facilitates the discovery of the natural born leader in our participants by teaching them to think critically about the connection between each of the three pillars.

The infrastructure of America perpetuates the cycles of poverty that caused my parent’s frequent absence from my life. I was frequently left in unsafe situations while my mother worked and my father was nowhere to be found. As I grew older, I increasingly identified with Tupac Shakur’s reference to the rose that grew from concrete. Like the rose, I had defied the odds and grown into a beautiful flower despite the harshness of my reality which was sometimes as difficult to break through as actual concrete. I persevered through my youth and regardless of my many scars, I am stronger, wiser, and much more unrelenting in my charge to achieve my passion of defeating the invisible hands of poverty and equipping others with the tools to do the same.

Through continued research on the impact of systemic and systematic poverty and what it takes to defeat it, NBLA works to facilitate opportunities for youth to gain financial literacy, network opportunities with leaders in various career fields, establish mentorships with passionate individuals, and strategically plan brighter futures for themselves.

I believe that there is a natural born leader inside each of our students, however, society sends a different more negative message. We work to awaken their inherent leadership by dismantling the lies they are told daily by society. We work as an organization to destroy the school to prison pipeline, mass incarceration, teen pregnancy, and other negative statistics that usually accompany generational poverty.

I commit my life to leading NBLA to greatness. I pledge to model the pillars for our leaders to witness daily. I will continue researching and studying to ensure superior programming. I pledge to cultivate relationships with each student and promise to remain a direct contributor to their success within the program. I will staff our organization with highly qualified adults who share my passion. I pledge to lead by example. I am excited about this journey we are embarking on with our leaders. As we cultivate young entrepreneurs, we break the cycle of generational poverty and create generational wealth. Stay Tuned! Equip Them. Lead Them. Love Them. And Watch Them RIse and Take Lead. Stay Tuned!

Peace, Power, and Prosperity,
Melita D. Carter 
Our Team

Incredibly talented people behind the scenes

NBLA is a team of educators, community partners, and volunteers who share my passion of eradicating generational poverty. No matter the socioeconomic status of a child’s family, entrepreneurship needs to be as viable an option as college. Through entrepreneurship, we address the economic disparities sustained by racism. When one is taught to safely and effectively provide for self, some of the negative statistics drastically decrease.
Melita Carter
Nakisha Carroll
Education Program Director
Anyea Gooch
Social Media Manager
Tracy J. James II
Art Program Director
Wish it! Dream it! Do it!
Chris Jennings
Business Mentor Director
Bridgett Jones
Human Resources Director
Empowering, Dedication, Teamwork, Driven, Success
Precious Little
Organization Advisor
Equity, Inclusivity, Intentionality, Truth, Justice, Sovereignty
Despi Ross
Website Development Director
Opportunity should knock for us all.
Dr. Ronda Taylor
Entrepreneurship Education Director
I believe in self-sufficiency, pursuing dreams, and being a life learner.
Do you want to be a leader builder?