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Meet Dr. Trenese LaShay McNealy of LaShay’s DESIGNS® in Hampton

Today, we’d like to introduce you to Dr. Trenese LaShay McNealy.

Dr. McNealy, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
As described within in my book, Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family, after obtaining my Bachelor of Science degree in Fashion Merchandising and Apparel Design with a minor in Management, along with an MBA degree in Business Administration, I launched my women’s clothing company, LaShay’s DESIGNS. To pay my bills, I moved to Atlanta, Georgia and accepted a full-time position. I eventually was married and began starting my family. After the successful accomplishments on my job, I was promoted; however, LaShay’s DESIGNS was not profiting, and I finally faced reality that I had to take a break from my fashion company and focus on my current position; thus, I shifted my focus to program management.

After working in my nonprofit position for 4-years, I decided to go back to school to obtain a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree with a specialization in Project Management so I could have the educational expertise to support my professional experience. After 4-years in my DBA program, with a husband and three children to tend to, I graduated with a 4.0 GPA. My doctoral program was a long, difficult process for me and my family; however, I achieved my goal. There are many strategies people can use to support their success. I wanted to not only share my successful strategies, but the successful strategies of other women who went through the same struggles of balancing school, work, and family. Thus, I wrote my book, Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family.

Has it been a smooth road?
No, I have always endured many obstacles and challenges throughout my lifetime. Things will not always occur how we would like for them to; but for me, I love the challenge, and I always try to overcome my obstacles. I have never allowed any obstacles or challenges to define me by limiting my abilities, my strength, or my willingness to always succeed regardless of the fight. As quoted within my book, “The road to success maybe a long, hard road to travel, but once you overcome one bump in the road, you can overcome another bump, and another bump, until you reach your destination. When you fail in life, get back up and continue onward to achieve your goals. There may be times in which you will feel defeated, but try not to let those obstacles get you down.”

We’d love to hear more about your business.
LaShay’s DESIGNS ® was established in 2009. The mission of the company is to provide customers with high-quality retail merchandise and services at reasonable prices. The swan with the logo represents elegance and grace, which are characteristics every female should portray. I currently have three products being sold through LaShay’s DESIGNS. The first product is my It’s No-Lye Naturalista T-Shirt, which is an affordable women’s t-shirt to represent black women with our natural hair.

The second product is my book, Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family. Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family is a must-read, self-help book in which women are provided with successful strategies to manage their school, work, and family obligations as they aim to reach their goals. I describe the lessons learned from my doctoral journey, provide motivation and encouragement, and analyze strategies working, student mothers used during their academics, professional careers, and family lifestyles. I wrote Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family to encourage other women not to give up on their educational or professional goals just because they are a mother or a wife. All mothers and wives can pursue any goal they aim to achieve if they are willing to work hard to succeed despite their family obligations.

The third product, which is a new product I just launched, is my #Career Goals T-Shirt. This t-shirt was designed for moms who not only work hard for their children but work with their career goals in mind. Outside of LaShay’s DESIGNS, I am the Director of Programs and Grants for a nonprofit organization in Atlanta, GA. I am known for my managerial, administrative, technological, interpersonal, analytical, organizational, and communicative skills in several areas such as project, program, and grant management. What sets me apart from others is that I am a dedicated, experienced, and reliable professional who is detailed-oriented with high integrity, strong work ethics, and great leadership qualities. In addition, I am a business owner and author. Although I cannot focus solely on LaShay’s DESIGNS at this time in my life, I am most proud to have my own company.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Yes, I feel that Atlanta, GA is a great market for retail businesses like LaShay’s DESIGNS. There are over 5.6 million people living throughout the metropolitan areas of Atlanta; thus, the opportunity is here. We, as business owners, must brand our business to make it a success. As a new business owner, branding and marketing are key. If you do not establish a brand, no one will know you or your business. If you do not properly market your business or your products, you will not gain the customers you are seeking.


  • It’s No Lye Naturalista T-Shirt – $10.00
  • Mommy’s Goals vs. Reality: Managing School, Work, and Family – $12.95
  • It’s No Lye Naturalista T-Shirt & Book Bundle – $17.95
  • #Career Goals T-Shirt – $25.00
  • #Career Goals T-Shirt & Book Bundle – $35.00

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
In-Studio Images – JCPenney Portraits

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