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Meet Elizabeth Peeple of You Are Life

Today we’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth Peeple.

Elizabeth, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My story starts as a young girl growing up in NYC. As a youth, I participated in and (as I got older) worked with nonprofit organizations. I attend various meetings with my mother who sat on a few boards at the time and was always intrigued at the work organizations did. As an early graduate of High School, I began my college career earlier than my peers and obtained a bachelors in Legal Studies from the University of Central Florida (UCF). You see, my original goal was to be an attorney, the best attorney (LOL) I would start a firm and hire the best of the best! I was inspired to help my community and figured changing laws was a great way to do it, but politics, I found, is not my thing. So I skipped law school (and the debt) and went to graduate school and received a Masters in Public Administration and graduate certificates in Nonprofit Management from UCF. Here is where the vision of my company came to pass. When it was time for graduation, I asked the question of how to take all that I have learned (and paid for lol) and used it in a way that would help the community. It became clear one day as I was on my way to volunteer at a youth event. I would start a nonprofit consulting business that would focus on building the infrastructure of the organization, which would allow them to become more knowledgeable, more creditable and more successful in their service. Thus, You Are L.I.F.E. (Leading an Impactful Future in Excellence) was born. In the last year, we have consulted and assisted over 20 nonprofits build their infrastructure and/or become more knowledgeable about the work they are doing. And we are proud to see them still going strong.

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?
My journey was not smooth and personal challenges continuously interrupted the flow of my business; however, every interruption was able to be turned into a win. I’ll start with a looming divorce from a 15 yr+ relationship. Mentally this is can be stressful for anyone, and I was no different. My thoughts were so consumed with emotion that keeping a level business head was not working well. So like most things in my life at that time, the business got pushed to the side. With counseling, prayer and faith, I was able to find a better version of myself and keep moving forward. I went back to working my business and everything was going well until I found myself driving to the hospital one day for what would be the start of taking care of a sick parent 24/7. For the next year, my focus, my thoughts and emotions were poured into being a caretaker. I stopped taking new clients and cut back on time with my existing clients, so much so, that I was almost in breach of my own contract. Through all the obstacles (and these are just a few), I was able to find some light. From understanding clients to a support system that would not let me fail, my business finally got off the ground.

You Are Life – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
You Are L.I.F.E. stands for Leading an Impactful Future in Excellence. It started out as a personal phrase/affirmation for myself as I was dealing with life’s obstacles. It reminded me to always be a Leader, always look at how a situation can impact the future and that in all I do, do it with excellence. As I began my company, I followed this method so it only made it right to name it that. It also began to double for the strategy I would use with working with my clients. It’s important for organizations to understand that they are looked at as leaders; that their service should be impactful for the present and future of those they are serving and that their service should be carried out with excellence at all times.

You Are Life is a nonprofit consulting company that focuses on building the infrastructure of organizations through the use of strategic development planning. We also provided workshops and internal training for organizations. We help organizations understand how they should operate; the importance of their role in the community; and how everything they do affect those that need their service. We specialize in assisting nonprofits make less mistakes and have more progress.

We are best known for being the ones to answer the often asked question (after obtaining tax-exempt status), “What now?” We often tell clients, applying and receiving tax exemption is one of the easier parts of operating a nonprofit. If you have all the “admin” information, you can be incorporated with little to no hassle but organizations are often left not knowing what the next step in running the organization should be. This is where You Are Life comes in. We provide education, resources and guidance for all organizations. We handle their business plans, strategies and internal development plans to help build a solid infrastructure. We take their goals and outline them in a way that meets the capacity of the organization and we do follow up to ensure the plans are running smooth.

As a company, I am most proud of the response we gain from our clients. They often feel they are better equipped to run their organization and know that we are always here to help.

The thing that sets us apart is that we are not here to tell you what to do, but rather brainstorm and provide options that can best work for your organization. Our goal is to have every client know and understand their organization “inside and out” which helps make them a better organization in the community and a better candidate for funding.

We also enjoy opportunities to speak at events about nonprofit planning. This year we spoke at the following: 2nd Annual Let’s Boss Up Empowerment Workshop!
4th Annual Black Business Expo- Atlanta
Jekalyn Carr You Will Win Conference 2019

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
The proudest moment of my career so far was being invited to speak as a panelist at the Jekalyn Carr You Will Win Conference. This opportunity allowed me to speak to 500 plus people about nonprofits in one setting.

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Getting in touch: VoyageATL is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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