Celebrating International Black Women’s History Month With The Founder of Brilliant Girl, Shaneisha Dodson
At Hustle and Soul Magazine, we thrive to highlight innovators, visionaries, and those who have made their mark in profound ways in the world. More than ever we’re seeing Black Women take the lead as creators and business owners. Highlighting such women as Shaneisha Dodson during International Black Women’s History Month hits different. Shaneisha has presented a very unique concept to the masses as the founder of Brilliant Girl. Shaneisha created the first ever 18-inch black superhero doll, Sugamama. Brilliant Girl’s goal is to bring more representation into the toy industry. Her proudest business accomplishment is donating over 90 dolls to children in need.
In addition to creating dolls that is touching hearts around the world, she is also an award-winning playwright. Her love of the arts led Shaneisha to become the founder of Black Girlz Productions, LLC. The company’s motto is “Dream BIG or go Home!” Her goal is to bring awareness to social issues through theatre. Shaneisha has written, directed, and independently produced three full length productions that have toured throughout the United States.
Hustle and Soul Magazine readers, please enjoy our interview!
Congratulations on all of your success thus far as the founder of Brilliant Girl and Black Girlz Productions. How do you manage running two companies?
Shaneisha: I believe in having a work-life balance. I am able to run both companies and maintain balance by giving myself limits on how much time I will spend on a certain task.
Would you say the work that you do requires you to have a big heart?
Shaneisha: Yes, and I indeed do have a big heart, as well as a call to give to those in need. I work to bring more representation into the doll industry.
You have an impressive academic background. Please tell us about your passion for education.
Shaneisha: I’m very passionate about education and am the first person in my family to attend college. This passion has allowed me to earn a BA in psychology from Grambling State University, MA in counseling from Dallas Baptist University, an Ed.S in education from Walden University, and a certificate in women entrepreneurship from Cornell University. I also completed the self-made entrepreneurship program. My passion is so strong, I want it to be for others so I have awarded six book scholarships to high school seniors.
What are your plans for the rest of the year?
Shaneisha: I plan to promote my doll Sugamama, the first black 18-inch superhero doll I launched in November 2022. I also plan to start working on the first animation series focused on Sugamama. In addition, I will be touring with my third children’s book Amina Fairy-In-Training. It’s a book that encourages children to never give up on their dreams.
More on Shaneisha Dodson
Representation is very important to Shaneisha. She says that it allows us to see ourselves and sometimes we have to see people who look like us in different roles in order to believe that we can achieve what may seem like the impossible.
Advice Shaneisha has for aspiring and new entrepreneurs is to do your due diligence by researching and praying before you work with anyone. This will save you time and money. Also, learn how to operate every aspect of your business.
Be sure to check out her latest magazine features published via Woman To Woman Talk Magazine, We Empower Magazine, Soigne’ + Swank Magazine, and That Girl.