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Hidden Gems from Norcross

Every day we have a choice. We can support an up and coming podcaster, try a new family-run restaurant, join a boutique gym started by a local fitness champ or we could keep giving away our money to the handful of giants who already control so much of our commerce. Our daily decisions impact the kind world we live in; if we want a world where small businesses are growing and artists and creatives are thriving then we should support them with our time, money and attention. We’re proud to highlight inspiring creatives and entrepreneurs each week in Hidden Gems series.  Check out some gems from Norcross and the surrounding areas.

Devin Campbell

I have been in the fitness industry for 20 years. In that time, I have done sales, management, personal training and owner of a better lifestyle company, PREPscribed Meals LLC. In my capacity as a manager at “big box gyms” with amazing monthly budgets, we were always looking at having a competitive edge over the competition. While acquiring new clients is always a focus in any industry, truly connecting with members to understand what is working and what is not for their respective situation is always best for “the bottom line.” Many members shared their struggles with eating healthier and the reasons given were varying and somewhat frustrating. Nutrition plays such a big part in anyone’s journey to health and not properly aligning one’s eating plan with their exercise regimen can lead many people to experience frustration and ultimately, the “yo-yo” effect kicks in where our weight and health cycles up and down. Most people, that exercise regularly, exercise 3-4 times per week but one needs to eat 3+ times per day. Finding myself more invested in my client’s success than they were at times, I found it best to create a solution that answered the many concerns that goal seekers faced. The statistics for obesity and diseases related to bad nutrition are overwhelming and constantly growing. Not only for adults, but childhood obesity is steadily rising as well. Read more>>

Deijah Mickens

I always grew up doing little arts and crafts, trying new things, no matter if it was a success or even an extreme disaster. I was always the one my family talked about, like “look what Deijah made” or “look what Deijah doing,” and I loved the attention. It made me strive to do more and more. YouTube was my best friend, and still is until this day. I started braiding my mom’s hair one day and they came out pretty decent. My mom let me try everything on her hair so she was really my practice head. One day I went to school with the braids I did in my hair, then everyone was like, wow, you did that, then everyone started asking me to do their hair. I’m probably going all over the place but I don’t only do hair, I do almost everything, I make clothes, I can make jewelry, I can paint/draw, there’s so much… the one person that really kept me going was my maw maw. She would always tell me to keep using my sewing machine, keep doing what you are doing, and don’t give up. I would always just let it go through my head and thought she was just bugging me but she was right. She’d always push me to keep going. She’d always make sure she was proud of me when I had something going on no matter what. She used to text me saying I see you doing this. Congratulations, maw maw love you baby. Read more>>

Chaunda Walls

My story actually beings with a 120-pound weight loss journey! I struggled to lose weight after a traumatic childbirth experience in 2001. I wouldn’t find my way back to health until 2007 when I finally embarked on a major life-changing journey and lost 120 pounds, started a company to help others do the same thing- called The Bella Fitness Group. Fast forward to 2020 and the Pandemic hits and my fitness company went all online. This was a blessing in disguise because the time saved by working from home allowed me to create a second business that would bring so much joy, peace and well, the start of a new destiny. This was when Tupelo Rose Candle Boutique was born. I have always been a huge collector of candles- the more exotic and luxurious, the more I love them! So I began researching, studying the craft of candlemaking for almost a year and finally put fear aside and started making candles. What I discovered was the immense joy and fulfillment that candle-making has brought me. I am a creative at heart. I love designing, I love bringing my visions to life. I pulled all the things that I love in life into the Tupelo Rose brand, All things, life, love, hope, activism, music, art and culture… and encouragement. Read more>>

Lisa Bonner

I have always loved and had a vision for accessories and accessorizing people. No matter where I go I would always buy accessories sunglasses, bracelets, purses, earrings, rings and necklaces if you were selling something I was buying. So one day I said to myself you should starting selling accessories instead of being a buyer become a seller. People would always say you need to start selling accessories you have an eye for accessories and knowing what others like and what looks good together. So today, here I am, owning LMB ACCESSORIES and accessorizing ladies and men. Read more>>

Teyana Goggins

I’ve always had a passion and true desire to work with children. Growing up all of my summer jobs and internships were centered around child development. I was eager to learn and wanted to contribute to the education and academic excellence of our youth. After graduating from Clark Atlanta University, I received an opportunity to go into the teaching field, which was an eye opening and rewarding experience. I was able to help enrich children’s lives not only through enhancing their educational skills but also by developing their social and emotional skills. After five years, I decided to leave the education field and join the corporate world but always knowing in the back of my mind that it wasn’t the end of my teaching journey and at some point, I would return to what I loved. The pandemic pushed me to step into my true calling because my position was eliminated at my former corporate job. I thought what better time to take a leap of faith and start a business centered around what I have a desire to do, and just like that Blossom Scholars was born. Read more>>

DJ Yung Red

I was working for The Toledo Public Library, making $6.60; I thought I was rich because I was making more then minimum wage during that time. I was on a lunch break one day when I decided I wanted to take the journey of becoming a DJ. During this time, MySpace was the latest social media and everybody was using it. I’m a firm believe that you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take, so I started in boxing local DJs asking if I could shadow them. Out of all the DJs I hit up DJ Big Lou The Mayor was the only one to respond. The first gig I shadowed him on was a Soulja Boy concert at Coyote Joe’s in Toledo, Ohio. They had two different concerts one for the kids another for adults during club hours. So I met Lou at the club, watched him set up and start the show. I even got to see Soulja Boy take the concert outside and get mobbed by the kid’s lol. I’m outside in disbelief at what I’m seeing, security gets the club staff and Soulja Boy back in the club and some how I ended up in a room with just Soulja and Arab. I wish I could have gotten a photo but my flip phone picture quality was trash. Fast forward to a couple of other memorable moments while shadowing Lou. Read more>>

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