From Activist to Entrepreneur

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Welcome to the latest episode of the LIB Life speacial weekly coverage to women who are making strives in the creative sector.

This week we welcome Celue Yeatta Doe, the daughter of the late Liberian President Samuel K. Doe.

Celue opens her story as a teenager living in Washington, D.C., where she began her journey working for two non-profit organizations – Young Women’s Project and City at Peace – during her sophomore year at Woodrow Wilson Senior High School.

“At the Young Women’s Project, I dedicated myself to public service and community activism, and fought to eradicate the sexual harassment of girls in the District of Columbia School system,” Ms. Doe said.

While working with Young Women’s Project she was able to make history as being one of the first individuals to testify in front of the D.C. School Board on how sexual harassment impacts the lives of teenage girls.

“This led me to historic involvement in contributing towards the drafting of a new sexual harassment policy for the D.C. Public School System,” Celue added.

Never tired of educating teenage girls in public schools and the city’s foster care system in Washinton D.C., Celue continued the work she loved by leading trainings on pertinent and controversial issues such as sexual harassment, self-esteem and other crucial issues that affect teens.

“At City Peace I was a core member of a non-profit organization that uses the performing arts as a vehicle to develop the next generation of engaged community leaders,” she explained.

“As a member, I embraced the organization’s beliefs of empowering teenagers to create safe, healthy, peaceful lives and communities,” Celue recalled.

During her time with the organization Celue performed in two major theatrical productions entitled “Beyond Me” and “Step Right Up”, focusing on issues and real-life events from the personal accounts and experiences of the performers.

“[Acting] in these productions gave me the opportunity to travel around the United States and perform at major theater venues such as the famous Arena Stage Theater in Washington, D.C.,” Doe said with a smile.

In 2001, she graduated from Woodrow Wilson Senior High School and matriculated to Long Island University and majoring in broadcasting and electronic media.

Throughout Celue’s college career, she was an active participant in LIU’s media program that comprised of radio, television and film. During her sophomore year, she became a news correspondent for the number one rated talk and political program on campus, “Talk Live”.

“My hard work and dedication enabled me to become one of the most prominent producers in the show’s history,” Doe explained. “I was able to take this program and several others to new heights.”

That same year, she became president of her school’s Civil Rights Coalition and worked to expand the organization’s membership to triple that of previous year. As president, she highlighted many of the unacceptable civil rights atrocities taking place around the world, one of which was the
genocide in Darfur, Sudan.

“I fought hard to bring awareness of the issue taking place in Darfur to my fellow students on campus. I was able to organize an awareness campaign through various fundraising events to benefit the nation’s displaced people.”

In the spring semester of 2004, Celue decided to expand her educational horizons by studying abroad at Franklin College in Lugano, Switzerland.

“Studying abroad for a semester enriched my life tremendously,” Ms. Doe recalled. “It got me focused on intercultural communication and globalization, and that gave me the opportunity to build long-lasting relationships with students from all around the world. It also enabled me to expand my horizons by traveling to various European cities,” Doe said of her overseas education.

Returning to the U.S., with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree in broadcasting and electronic Media in 2005 and landed herself the position of Production Assistant with a television production company in Washington, D.C. There she gained valuable experience in television production and management.

“I must be grateful to God,” she said. I have been fortunate to work with Fortune 500 companies such as Morgan Stanley Investment Management and Gap Inc., working hard to establish myself as an expert in the Communications profession.

In the spring of 2013, Celue experienced the greatest joy of a woman as she brought forth her first child, Emma Jenneh. The birth of the child changed her trajectory, as it was the launching pad for her next journey as an entrepreneur and business woman.

“As a new mother, I experienced many struggles with my daughter suffering from severely dry skin, including her lips and scalp. All of the medication recommended by pediatricians did not work effectively, as the little girl’s skin would become so dry that her lips would often crack and bleed.

“Through that experience I began the research for natural and organic skin care and hair care products that would not harm infants’ delicate skin,” Doe recalled.

Over the next few years she begin collaborating with experts in the field of natural living to formulate the best combinations of natural and organic ingredients for healthy skin and hair.

After three years of research in January 2016, Celue launched Royal Glo, a skin and hair care line that features wonderfully scented whipped shea butter with great moisturizing properties, a variety of authentic African black soaps, and a hair care division called Royal Botanicals.

Doe said: “Royals Botanicals carry excellent hair pomades and essential organic hair oils. Before the birth of my child, I was already making the effort of living a natural and organic lifestyle prior to motherhood. The birth of the child only piqued the desire to live better and do better.”

Like most new entrepreneurs who find it difficult to build a market for their new businesses, Celue turned her focus to mostly Internet and social marketing to build her customer base.

“Because of my focus on social marketing, I have been able to get most of my costumers online and a few by word-of-mouth,” she noted.

While overcoming customer challenges, Celue faced another challenge of finding the purest and organic ingredients to use for her products.

“My goal is to stay free from plastic packaging products, which lead to harmful chemicals leaking into the products that are contained in them. For this reason, 90 percent of my packaging for my product so far has been glass,” Doe added.

In less than a month after the business was establish, Royal Glo has now been inundated with requests from global customers expressing their interest in the product.

“As the sole financier of the business, my focus now is figuring out the best way possible to get products worldwide to customers,” Doe explained.

Like the young model we featured last week, Celue reminded LIB Life that her heart has never strayed far from her homeland, Liberia.

“It is my prayer to return to Liberia one day so I can accomplish the lifelong dream of opening an orphanage in Liberia in honor my late mother, Jenneh Kiadii,” Doe told this publication.

Taking in a deep breath, Celue recalled the difficult childhood moment when she found out about the death of her late father at eight years old.

“I received the news in a very cool manner from someone who was not a family member. From that day, things changed for me and my entire family,” Doe said of her the effect of her father’s death.

Celue’s struggle for women and girls’ empowerment is something she holds dear to her heart and plans to soon return to Liberia. She plans to embark on the task of strategically implanting programs, trainings and educational opportunities for Women in Liberia.

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