Be the Leader You Are Meant to Be

Vashti Murphy McKenzie, the first female bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, wowed the women during her keynote this morning sponsored by ADP at the Women of Power Summit in Hollywood, Florida.

[Related: Memorable Moments from Women of Power: Day 1]

With humor, sass, gravitas, and pinky swear promises, this leader of the AME church exhorted her listeners to not only own their truth, but to let go of hindrances holding them back. Here are a few highlights.

Opening up with a hilarious but common sense litany of things accomplished women ought to know, McKenzie captivated the audience. “You oughta know—

  • How to be positive in negative situations
  • That sometimes the answer is “not now,â€� and sometimes it’s “never.â€�
  • That Spandex doesn’t look good on every body
  • How to flirt without getting into trouble
  • If you don’t know, ask for help
  • What you care deeply about

The bishop also urged the leaders in the room to “go deep,� to not be afraid of abandoning the superficial but to address life-and-death issues our society must grapple with—such as the tragic lead-poisoned water in Flint, Michigan.

“Leadership is not for the faint of heart,� she said, and went on to describe how women are recasting the leadership model by being not only assertive, but also flexible and relational, inviting others into the decision-making process.

“Close the door to the past, open the door to the future, and walk into your destiny,� McKenzie had all the attendees—nearly 1,000 strong—promise and pinky swear.

“Promise me you’ll dream big and trust God to take you through the process,� she charged the women. “Start encouraging yourself since criticizing yourself hasn’t worked.�

“Stop working it out yourself and let God do the heavy lifting.�

“Stop wasting your time on things you can’t change, and spend time on things that have possibility.�

“Turn challenges into opportunities.�

“Leadership is reaching beyond your comfort zone.�

“The world is waiting for who God has called you to be.�

The keynote was so energizing, McKenzie and the audience broke out in a dance at the end! Be sure to watch the live stream for other unique messages that all women leaders need to hear from other Women of Power.

Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie Keynotes 2016 Women of Power Summit

Bishop Vashti McKenzie

Bishop Vashti McKenzie

As if things could get any better with the Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit, it is now confirmed that the 117th elected and consecrated bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie, will kick off the three days of empowerment as the Summit’s keynote speaker.

The history making Bishop McKenzie exemplifies a woman of power as she is the first woman to be elected to the level of Episcopal office in the AME denomination’s 200-year history.  In addition to this tremendous accomplishment, the Bishop also served as the president of the Council of Bishops, chair of the General Conference Commission, and was the host Bishop for the 49th Session of the General Conference of the AME Church in June 2012. Bishop McKenzie was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve on the inaugural President’s Advisory Council of the White House Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

[RELATED: Happy Founders Day: 10 Celebrity Power Women Who Belong to Delta Sigma Theta]

Bishop McKenzie is honored to serve as the presiding prelate of the 10th Episcopal District, which is the entire state of Texas. She serves as the Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees of Paul Quinn College and she is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the International Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia. She is the national chaplain of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated.

If her accomplishments aren’t impressive enough, Bishop McKenzie is also the author of five books: Not Without A Struggle and Strength in the Struggle, regarding leadership and professional growth for women; Journey to the Well on personal growth and transformation; Swapping Housewives on 21st century implications for married and unmarried love and; Those Sisters Can Preach! 22 sermons as pearls of wisdom from nationally known preachers who happen to be women.

Hear, firsthand, from Bishop McKenzie and several impactful speakers on what it what it means to Know Your Worth, Own Your Truth, and Embrace Your Power at the 2016 Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit, March 9-12, Hilton Diplomat Resort & Spa, Hollywood, Florida. REGISTER NOW through February 14th using code ”VDAY” for a limited time only special discounted rate.

For information on the Women of Power Summit including sessions, speakers and entertainers click here. Be sure to check back at BlackEnterprise.com as updates are announced.

Follow Black Enterprise on social media @BlackEnterprise for Women of Power news, highlights, and updates. Use hashtag #BEWPS to stay in the loop. Please be on the lookout at BlackEnterprise.com as speakers, activities, and sessions are announced.

Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie Keynotes 2016 Women of Power Summit

Bishop Vashti McKenzie

Bishop Vashti McKenzie

As if things could get any better with the Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit, it is now confirmed that the 117th elected and consecrated bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie, will kick off the three days of empowerment as the Summit’s keynote speaker.

The history making Bishop McKenzie exemplifies a woman of power as she is the first woman to be elected to the level of Episcopal office in the AME denomination’s 200-year history.  In addition to this tremendous accomplishment, the Bishop also served as the president of the Council of Bishops, chair of the General Conference Commission, and was the host Bishop for the 49th Session of the General Conference of the AME Church in June 2012. Bishop McKenzie was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve on the inaugural President’s Advisory Council of the White House Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

[RELATED: Happy Founders Day: 10 Celebrity Power Women Who Belong to Delta Sigma Theta]

Bishop McKenzie is honored to serve as the presiding prelate of the 10th Episcopal District, which is the entire state of Texas. She serves as the Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees of Paul Quinn College and she is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the International Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia. She is the national chaplain of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated.

If her accomplishments aren’t impressive enough, Bishop McKenzie is also the author of five books: Not Without A Struggle and Strength in the Struggle, regarding leadership and professional growth for women; Journey to the Well on personal growth and transformation; Swapping Housewives on 21st century implications for married and unmarried love and; Those Sisters Can Preach! 22 sermons as pearls of wisdom from nationally known preachers who happen to be women.

Hear, firsthand, from Bishop McKenzie and several impactful speakers on what it what it means to Know Your Worth, Own Your Truth, and Embrace Your Power at the 2016 Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit, March 9-12, Hilton Diplomat Resort & Spa, Hollywood, Florida. REGISTER NOW through February 14th using code ”VDAY” for a limited time only special discounted rate.

For information on the Women of Power Summit including sessions, speakers and entertainers click here. Be sure to check back at BlackEnterprise.com as updates are announced.

Follow Black Enterprise on social media @BlackEnterprise for Women of Power news, highlights, and updates. Use hashtag #BEWPS to stay in the loop. Please be on the lookout at BlackEnterprise.com as speakers, activities, and sessions are announced.