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Meet Trailblazer Adebukola Ajao

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adebukola Ajao.

Adebukola, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I began my journey as an entrepreneur after couple of years as a digital writer. It was 2014 and I was screaming “… fire this time!” when an unarmed Black youth, Mike Brown was killed by a Ferguson police officer. I along with hundreds of other Black writers began documenting the Black Lives Matter movement into the digital world whether through microblogging, longform, or on social media.

Through my writing experience, I learned about content creation and curation as I was writing original content and gathering information for evergreen material. I loved it!

In 2016, I continued doing feature stories and had the opportunity to interview celebs across the entertainment industry such as Remy Ma, Faith Evans, ChloexHalle, Mario, the cast of OWN’s Greenleaf and many more.

Being a writer got me in the door but I knew it would not keep me in the room. I had to find innovative ways to make an impact on my work. So, I began pitching to local organizations on how they can solve their communications problems. I landed a social media fellowship at the Lewis Family Foundation and things took off from there. I made so many connections and those connections later became my clients.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The road to success in entrepreneurship is NEVER smooth. The media and entertainment industry, in particular, is very gruesome. Although times are changing and we are seeing an uprising of women breaking persistent barriers in advertising and marketing we still have a long way to go, especially for Black women.

This is some of the advice I can offer:

Work Smart and Hard – You can finesse as much as you want but nothing beats good old fashioned hard work. It doesn’t matter how aesthetic your social media may look, if you can’t back it up IRL you are not successful.

Impeccable Work is Key – Nobody has time for lackluster work ethic or work quality, especially in the media and entertainment industry. It’s important now more than ever, Google it, Baby!

There has never been a better time to pursue entrepreneurship. There are so many FREE resources for those who don’t know where to start. There is no excuse ladies! I would particularly start with googling resources. I use the U.S. Small Business Administration of Boston at 10 Causeway Street. They supported all the legal aspects of my business for free. I found it through a simple Google search.

All in all stay hungry, use your resources and do what you do fearlessly. I always say this and will stand by it forever – I will only work with those who are hungry to learn.

Success belongs to those who not only prepare for it today (as Malcolm x would say) but those who take advantage of all the opportunities available to them!

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about BDY CONSULT – what should we know?
My work experience reflects the myriad roles that I take on in my career. As the founder of my own startup business (BDY CONSULT) and social activist coalition (We Are the Ones), organization and multitasking are integral to not only my own success but the successes of my organizations. Many of the organizations I started were in conjunction with me completing undergrad at Emmanuel College, further emphasizing the necessity to be organized. Within a three year span, I co-organized the following major events:

Enough is Enough, December 4, 2014, 10,000+ attendees
Raising Our Voices, September 2015, 50+ attendees
Stay Woke Rally, April 2015, 500+ attendees
When Youth Lead: Youth Symposium at Wheelock College, April 2016, 400+ attendees

Not only was I responsible for organizing these events, I was also helpful in covering them on social media and on various online mediums such as Huffington Post Black Voices, that I contributed to.

WATO believes that in order to uplift the community we must: be present in critical conversations concerning the future of our youth, share knowledge with our community, practice cooperative economics, and provide young people with the socio-emotional skills and academic resources they need to become the next generation of leaders. We Are the Ones provides different outlets of resources that help serve communities of color. We implement our beliefs by holding discussions in schools (ranging from elementary to college level), supporting businesses of our communities, and providing safe spaces for the people to let their voices be heard. We are teachers, students, entrepreneurs, blacktivists, artists, bloggers and community organizers who are providing resources, educating and, ultimately, tapping into the success of young people of color. WATO serves as a “for the youth, by the youth,” initiative to get young people fired up about social change.

At BDY CONSULT, I offer consultation to small and large brands to increase following, provide feedback, and collect data to increase target audience reach. My success is not only attributed to my ability to reach large amounts of people. I also create content that is entertaining., timely, and interesting to the target audience of my client. I established, manage, create content, and collect data for various accounts including The Chocolate Project, UsDarkskins, A2Z Talent, and Bigger Than My Block (all local orgs). I also bring resources to the city to support creatives on their journey and give them a platform to tell their story. My most recent project was in partnership with Verizon on their small business initiative called “From the Ground Up.” We hosted an event featuring Boston designer Josefa Da Silva.

Which women have inspired you in your life?
I draw my inspiration from Ida B. Wells. She risked her life campaigning against lynching through her investigative journalism on lynching in the south. She was active, co-founding legendary orgs like the NAACP. She was a total badass. Her fearlessness could’ve easily gotten her killed – but she fought for her people anyway!

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