Raquel Eatmon on Helping Women Succeed

March 27, 2017

Raquel Eatmon

Don't miss Raquel Eatmon at the 2017 Simmons Leadership Conference!

Entrepreneur, author, and possibility broker, Raquel Eatmon is CEO of the communications company Rising Media LLC and founder of the Woman of Power Leadership Conference in Cleveland, Ohio.

Which female leader do you most admire? In what way has she driven change?

Maya Angelou. She dared and she did. I had the opportunity to interview her during my time with CBS 11 in Dallas and we talked a lot of being authentic and still working for your cause. She has driven change by sharing her message through the arts, politics, and on social platforms. She didn’t use one vessel — she used them all. 

How does a sense of purpose inform and influence your work?

A sense of purpose is what keeps me going through the thousand “no’s.” My purpose prepares me for the many obstacles ahead while reconfirming my promise to do good, meaningful work even if it’s not popular with others.

What would you say is the most daring move you've made in your career?

The most daring move was leaving the TV news business to start my own business. I didn’t take a standard or traditional approach. It was scary but necessary. I made mistakes but managed to find my way through that maze.

What did you learn from that experience?

From childhood up to this very moment, nothing about me or my approach is traditional. At one point in my life that fact bothered me, but once I took that leap of faith I learned to bet on myself. With that gamble comes self-acceptance. Once we become clear about who we are, we can override the missteps and truly celebrate the victories. I also met genuine courage. 

What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve gotten along the way?

Life is hard enough. Don’t go through it trying to be someone else. 

If you could change one way women support other women on their path to success, what would it be?

Be an open book. Drop the facade. Help other women understand that current success comes with great failure and most of us fall hard before we arrive. It’s not pretty but it’s true. 

What major issue do you think women should focus on to effect change?

Social change.

Any tips for work/life integration?

Practice in-the-moment living. Be with the now. I strongly believe in meditation and yoga, a little bit each day goes a long way.

If you could dine with anyone, past or present, with whom would you dine and what would you like to ask him or her?

My great-grandfather. He died when I was 7 years old. He moved his entire family to Ohio from Alabama and worked in a mill. He purchased two homes. He had a third-grade education. I would ask him about his life as a child and how he, an uneducated African-American man from the South, built a life for his family. I have a tiny pocket Bible that belonged to him and he printed his name in it and other information. I also have a ring he made out of coins. I just wonder how he managed to build such a life with so much segregation, racism, and fear. 

Fill in the blank. People would be surprised to know that I  ______ 

make the best homemade red velvet cupcakes.

Diane von Furstenberg

Simmons Leadership Conference

Every spring over 3,300 women come together for a transformative experience with celebrated role models and experts in their fields.