“Lifelong Education” by Valerie Cheers-Brown

“Knowledge can be obtained from studying the lives of millionaire mentors, who will clean out all of that worthless stuff in the back of our minds, that education is the way to go.” ~ Valerie J Brown

This is my mentor, Mrs. Frances W. Kiradjian, Owner/CEO of the BLLA, Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association, who truly believed in my dreams and visions, and I want to say thank you to her, and am looking forward to working with the BLLA. I have followed this incredible lady and her vision was so intriguing to me, and so I set out and started my vision following others like mentor, Ian Schrager, Boutique Hotelier, and one of our now members of the BLLA, and saw something which the big brand hotels, i.e. Marriott could learn from the boutique & lifestyle hotel brand which is that trendy, one of a kind art filled personal luxury hotel experience and a name and not a number kind of hotel stay experience.

“A book is a device to ignite the imagination.” ― Alan Bennett, The Uncommon Reader

reading book

“Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home.” ― Anna Quindlen, How Reading Changed My Life

“All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you; the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was.” – Ernest Hemingway

I’m a firm adherent that most school understudies would be in an ideal situation dropping out of school and contributing the cash they now spend on school. At that point take the four years they would have spent on school and travel, work, play, and invest time with savvy individuals discussing critical things. It would be your decision on what’s essential, not a teacher, not a dignitary, not an employees council.

You don’t need to head off to college to be a win. Regardless of the fact that you try for a moment, you don’t need to graduate to be a win. Here are simply a couple of the individuals who have gotten to be acclaimed and/or fruitful without moving on from school and/or secondary school.

An overview directed by Bloomberg in 2010 demonstrate that the school of difficult times was the most obvious source (tied with the University of California) for CEOs of S&P 500 organizations. Harvard was the #3 source (alongside the colleges of Texas, Missouri, and Wisconsin). The school of harsh times peculiarities CEOs who never moved on from school.

Of the main 400 wealthiest Americans in 2011, 27 moved on from secondary school yet did not go to school. An alternate 36 were school dropouts.


I would like to present to you one of my mentor’s, Sir Richard Branson, and a transcript from an interview Anderson Cooper had with Sir Richard Branson on CNN aired May 21, 2004.

COOPER: What do you think it is about your brain, about the way you process information and the way you see things that has made you successful? 

RICHARD BRANSON, FOUNDER & CEO VIRGIN: Well, I was as a child dyslexic, not badly dyslexic but dyslexic had quite a lot of problems in school.

COOPER: You didn’t graduate high school.

BRANSON: Yes, I mean my problems at school were such that I actually left school when I was 15 and there were some subjects that I just, you know, had a complete blank about. I mean (unintelligible) mathematics or I mean for instance for years I haven’t been able to work out the difference between gross and net. The reason that I think people who are dyslexic seem to exceed quite well in life, having had hell at school, is that you do simplify things.


I have been following Sir Richard Branson for some time now, and it took me all of this time to realize that college just isn’t the way and you are so right, being in college can make others money and put yourself into more Student Loan debt!

I am ready to make my ideas come to fruition, and am ready to put my ideas into action, rather than just words; and now is the time and I have big dreams! I do mean really big dreams and is my main reason for following my partner Fran Kiradjian, CEO/Founder of the Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association. I not only want to be an entreprenaur, writer, speaker, my own children’s clothing line, boutique & lifestyle ideas, etc. I have wasted too much of my time already on education, and ready to survive and live the good life for the duration of my life by doing rather than dreaming, but dreams are a good start and without them, we have no starting point!

I am becoming so motivated by mentors such as Sir Richard Branson, and he is one incredible self made human being, leader, business owner, etc. and I so want to meet and give him one great big hug!

I will discuss another one of my mentors who is Mr. Bill Gates, and I would like to say thank you to Mr. and Mrs. Gates for helping me!  I followed Mr. Gates, Founder/Owner Microsoft and studied him when with Microsoft and loved his corporation work ethics, so to speak, when he ate steak, his employees ate steak too.  He had one of the lowest job turnovers at Microsoft, and was a great leader when it came to his employees. What I really loved about Mr Gates was how he treated his employees and he treated them exactly the way he wanted to be treated and it showed and low absentism, tardiness, etc.

I love this great man for his greatness and Philanthrophy, and such a great humanitarian and this is what made me one day want to be the very first volunteer to become a Philanthropist at the Saint Louis Public Library Friends Foundation.

I love the books which he has had me to read and am going to read. I have found out that if you read a book a week, or a day, you are just that closer to having the good life! Reading is the best education and that is what the library is for, but when you want to fill your bookshelves, he has shown me how to get them very cheap!

Dr. Henry Ed Roberts was Mr. Gates mentor and mentors have mentors!

Mentors are the way to go and they keep you motivated and inspired and pumped up working toward goals. You really after a point begin to feel like you are a millionaire and I do feel is God’s way of saying, “You are close child.” So you keep on working, working the hardest you ever worked in your life for absolutely nothing, but it doesn’t matter, cause you know with hard work, it will pay off!

I have so many people who I follow from Robert Kiosayki, “Rich Dad Poor Dad” who listen to fervently and listened to him tonight and was taking notes like I was in lecture. I listen to his story at least once a week, “Rich Dad Poor Dad” and it encourages me even more. I have mentors like Evan Carmichael, who pops up with “Believe” and I do believe, and it seems like Evan pops up all of the time, when I may be feeling a little down. I say he is my stalker who Iove to see pop up and I stalk him right back, because he has so much motivation to listen to!


There are so many remarkable people like Guy Kawasaki, who inspires me and posts motivation about marketing, inspiration, etc. which I take very seriously, and I thank Him so very much also! Mr. Kawasaki is an Evangelist, an author of over 13 books, and speaks around the world at least 50 times a year.

Guy Kawasaki signing books

These are the kinds of people, who are my mentors, who I follow and stalk (joking) online and read their postings, read about all kinds of things they are working on, etc. These are the kinds of people I want in my life right now, and am working very hard to get to where they are!

Tyler Perry, is my mentor and I am continuing following this incredible man and want one day to do some movies or write them, direct them, all of the above! This incredible human beings bio makes you realize that there is hope and when you put God first, you cannot go wrong, but it will take some big praying, believing and patience. Wow, did he ever have guts and the things which he has done for many is phenomenal and he is my inspiration for life. I love Tyler, because he not only had courage, but he shows me things for what they really are and one of the most incredible black men who showed me that what happens to us in our past, is what should make us stronger.

Life is an experiment and this phenomenal man shows us just how and what you can do with dreams, and to me dreams are experiments waiting to happen! I love you Tyler Perry and thanks for being who you are and with you I know there is HOPE and you give much ENCOURAGEMENT and INSPIRATION, showing it can be done if you BELIEVE you RECEIVE!

Learning is a lifetime process, and you have to do lots of work if you want lots of things and awesome people to start entering into your life and it will begin to happen when you work your ass off and it won’t be easy.  I think about Les Brown and what he said one of his mentors use to say “If you do what is easy your life will be hard. If you do what is hard your life will be easy.” Having partners, suppliers, stakeholders, vendors, etc. is the first step of being on your way of having others money work for you. If you want to become somebody most said you would never be, then you must work hard; and if you are working for money and only money, you will not make it.

There have been times, I didn’t know how I would make it, but praying has helped and trusting God, mentors, or what I call my angels God has assigned to me and being patient and self-determined and never giving up.

I would like to say I have saved the very best for last and this is mentor Oprah Winfrey!

When I think of this great lady and how and what she does, it does not take a rocket scientist, and I know I will have no problem staying rich, because I have been a giver all of my life and it does not have to be money and volunteering and giving back has been my passion most of my life and my medicine, etc.  I know it is not quite that easy, and you must have lawyers, financial advisors, etc. but this lady is ultimately wonderful!

I just want to say that Oprah Winfrey has not only inspired my life, but what she has done, I have begun helping African nation students by being mentors on Facebook, and incredible things have started happening for them and myself. I so want to help a less fortunate village with girls who want to educate themselves to become entreprenaurs one day to help them make things better for their village, or family.

Can you imagine a village of girls who are all your daughters, and I so understand Oprah Winfrey’s logic about not having to have blood children to be a mother, and had a mentor, Ms. Virginia who thought the same way, and I was one of her daughters, or granddaughters, I thought of. I loved that lady and I love Oprah Winfrey!

Mentors are those who are where you want to be one day and you are so intrigued that you follow them, listen to them, watch them, read them, etc. It is the power of inspiration which you receive when you want to follow a person all of the time.

These are my main mentors and if I have forgotten any, please blame my head and not my heart.

“What I’ve found about it is that there are some folks you can talk to until you’re blue in the face–they’re never going to get it and they’re never going to change. But every once in a while, you’ll run into someone who is eager to listen, eager to learn, and willing to try new things. Those are the people we need to reach. We have a responsibility as parents, older people, teachers, people in the neighborhood to recognize that.”
Tyler Perry, Don’t Make a Black Woman Take Off Her Earrings: Madea’s Uninhibited Commentaries on Love and Life

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