- Tech Insights
The Time for Change Foundation was founded by Kim Carter, and Vanessa Perez serves as its executive director. Kima Russell is the DOO of the BBOP center. It was important to grow into community development and economic development to build the homes they needed and give women access to finances so they could alleviate poverty and build wealth. The foundation provides housing, childcare, counseling, and financial education to homeless women and children.
After years of incarceration, homelessness, and drug addiction, Kim decided to take the chance in 2002 and founded the Time for Change Foundation for women seeking a second chance. She left corporate America, took the leap of faith, and never looked back. Vanessa interned at TFCF in February 2012 to gain office experience but fell in love with its empowerment work. She then became civically engaged to raise awareness of homelessness, family separation, and political representation.
She rose through the ranks for a decade until the founder groomed her to be executive director. Kima leads the BBOP Center and black and brown entrepreneurial women through their BBOP Business Academy. Afro-Latina, she supports black and brown women entrepreneurs. She loves the high-tech, innovative success center. She knows the BBOP Center's capital, networks, and tools for profitable business growth will change local women's lives, so it's crucial.
These three leaders share the goal of mentoring and reflecting on future leaders. Kim advises purpose and relentless resolve. Unstoppable leaders inspire others, and she believes that's kept her going and remains undeniable about her. She knows what she supports and opposes. Vanessa asks leaders questions and reads leadership books. She suggests learning from a good leader who leads like you. Experience teaches leadership, in her view. She suggests making mistakes and having tough conversations. If unsure, she recommends getting advice but making the best business decision. Business management taught Kima servant leadership and transformational leadership. Since the servant first prioritizes others, she naturally serves first and hopes to inspire others to reach their potential by focusing on the future and positive change. She has held many positions in her 25-year career, shaping and influencing her leaders, some of whom she admires and others she despises. Leaders should focus on people, listen to and elevate their ideas, and develop strengths and abilities to maximize potential.
Each of the three executives has a distinct opinion on communication. Kim believes that having an open and honest dialogue and realizing that everyone has valuable opinions and brings a unique perspective to the table are the keys to success. Also, listening skills are a trait of effective leadership. Vanessa prefers in-person meetings where everyone can ask questions, comment, and give feedback, whereas Kima likes assertiveness and appreciates confident but polite speech, which includes collaborative, inspiring, and productive meetings.
Decision-making is essential for all three executives. Kim used to enjoy involving senior-level leaders in problem solving and solution creation so that decisions could be made based on what was best for the client and the organization. For Vanessa, decision-making strategies happen among the executive leadership and ultimately include solutions that will most benefit the organization with the least liability. However, Kima is analytical and appreciates a collaborative decision-making approach in the workplace, where they discuss a situation and come up with a potential solution.
Anticipating their employee’s arrival at the company, the executives explain a few things about their strengths in their opinion. Kim has moved on to a new job as the Ambassador, so the Executive Director is now in charge of the team. She makes sure there are enough resources for staff training and development. Vanessa says the company's greatest strength is its teamwork and loyal, responsible employees.
They expect staff to dedicate themselves to their mission, clients, and work. The company's employees know this is heart work, not a 9-to-5. Kima expects their employees to find meaning in their work as they build a culture that values service to others. She believes the company's desire to serve is its greatest strength.
Kim shares that philanthropy and corporations are their main markets, and they want to improve community service through these groups. Investing in outcome-based solutions makes them measurable. Vanessa asserts that their nonprofit helps homeless women with trauma, incarceration, substance abuse, marginalization, and child reunification. To improve client experiences, staff must be trained in evidence-based programs and want to help this population overcome barriers, poverty, homelessness, and self-sufficiency. Kima gives a brief that BBOP targets black and brown women entrepreneurs. They have a popular incubator and accelerator. Black women in the Inland Empire have 24% poverty, and Hispanic women have 22%. Black and brown women own 2% of businesses, have less capital, and are underrepresented. They prioritize women and provide access for them to succeed.
The three executives are eager to explain their foundation’s services after seeing people's problems resolved. Kim uses Gallup Strength Coaching and Assessment and discovers team execution opportunities. Based on the proliferation of warehouses in the Inland Empire, she believed that women of color needed capital, information, and networks to participate in this technology-driven industry, so they developed 10,000 square feet of commercial real estate to create the first of its kind: The BBOP Center—Black and Brown Opportunities for Profit—helps women build, grow, and scale investable businesses. There are 14 offices, 3 conference rooms, a large cafeteria, a co-working space, and a childcare center. Vanessa says their team's workload motivates them to achieve their yearly goals for service and helping women. Motivating others and advancing the organization drive her, and consequently, she advises, sets goals, and updates.
In subsequent years, Kim wants to invest in BBOP Center startups with a small pool of dollars. Vanessa is excited to offer women another economic opportunity. She will turn an abandoned restaurant into a commercial kitchen, training space, and downtown smoothie shop selling healthy drinks. Kima will help women start sustainable businesses. Teaching women inspires nations and their children. "It's exciting to create plans that elevate entrepreneurial ideas, innovate with technology and capital, and eliminate inefficient methods as we create something special for us and by us," she claims.
Kim believes the organization will succeed and find new solutions to California's biggest issues in five years, and women will run businesses. She adds that the Inland Empire has great potential and opportunities. They just need to give everyone unlimited potential. Vanessa believes TFCF will lead the region in helping women build generational wealth, create sustainable businesses, and change their families' social and economic trajectory. Kima grows exponentially as the organization builds businesses and helps women and children live healthy, productive, fulfilling lives while changing the community.
Time For Change Foundation
Since 2002, Time for Change Foundation (TFCF) has been assisting homeless women and children achieve self-sufficiency by providing housing and necessary supportive services. In response to the housing crisis and effects of mass incarceration and family separation, TFCF implemented an array of evidenced-based programs, housing and trauma informed approaches to address their needs. Equally important, is our leadership development and advocacy projects necessary to bring the voices of those most impacted by punitive policies into policy advocacy and civic engagement.