Shantia Coley is an author, speaker and nationally recognized attorney for a Fortune 500 corporation. From the outside looking in her journey is a testimony of a successful woman of color—consistently ascending in career, family and personal development. However, Shantia’s journey has not been without tribulations.
Shantia has met a great many struggles throughout her journey and has come to two major realizations: 1). your past will try to prevent you from winning, and 2). you and your self-doubt are your greatest competition.
Shantia was born in Mainz, West Germany to a single military mother. She spent much of her childhood bouncing from school to school during her mother’s time in the service. After many seasons away from her two children, Shantia’s mother, who was often deployed or stationed in various locations, decided to leave the military. They often lived paycheck to paycheck with Shantia’s mother working several jobs (night and day literally) just to make ends meet. Nonetheless, her mother always worked single-handedly to make sure Shantia and her sister never suffered.
It is from her mother that Shantia gained her “chin up” mentality, her drive and her perseverance. Shantia’s mother worked to break the generational cycles in her family by being the first to leave the nest and by joining the military. Shantia decided to carry the torch even further by being the first person in her family to attend a four-year university. It was no easy task however she was determined to defy the statistical odds against her. She excelled in high school and settled on Elon University, where she was awarded a scholarship for being her family’s first to attend a four year university.
Fortune 500 Attorney
Upon graduation, Shantia’s passion for serving others manifested in her work as a cimg_9638ommunity organizer.For two years, she traveled up and down the eastern part of North Carolina lobbying legislators and educating disenfranchised groups on their civil and voting rights. This passion for policy led to her making the difficult choice to leave the rural communities of Eastern North Carolina and attend law school.
Shantia matriculated at North Carolina Central University School of Law and again saw a calling for leadership, serving as Vice-President of her class. Upon graduation, Shantia continued her passion for public interest by spending almost four years as a public defender. After she and her husband welcomed twin boys, she eventually left public interest to enter into private practice before being offered a coveted position as Counsel for a Fortune 500 Corporation. She presently handles a large domestic and international caseload managing litigation of these cases in the best interest of the Enterprise.
Shantia is happily married and working on her family dynamics, but those too, have been the journey of a lifetime and filled with a difficulties of their own. Shantia has come to realize that while these journeys and her humble beginnings are not ideal, it is her persistence, willingness to care for self and longing to continue to lead and serve that grew her and her career. She is now extremely passionate about making sure that people understand that it doesn’t matter what you did or did not have, your future depends on what you desire and what you are willing to work for. She is a living, breathing and walking testimony of what hard work, perseverance and never letting your past shape you can manifest into.