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Meet La Juana (LJ) Chambers Lawson of Tacit Growth Strategies (TGS)

Today we’d like to introduce you to La Juana (LJ) Chambers Lawson.

La Juana, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I always struggle with telling my story. My life up to this point has been very interesting in the sense that I have grown into an existence that is not particularly bound or consequential to my story — if that makes sense. I am many things but what I hold dear is that I am the daughter of a disabled Marine who is a truly marvelous autodidact in every way. I have learned life skills from my father that I have passed on to friends, those that I mentor and complete strangers. His lessons have the power of transforming people, to include myself, and their circumstances in extraordinary ways. Also, that I am the daughter of a beautifully complex woman with a powerful story of reinvention and perseverance. I am one of my mother’s two seeds that she constantly praises and keeps close to her heart. My sister Taylor Chanelle is my pride and joy and I love her deeply because she is mine and my mother’s redemption. I like to think of myself as the balance of my parents and my multifaceted story. By that, I mean that I identify my story as overlapping with the chapters of theirs that I was entangled into somehow. Both of my parents would tell you that we (i.e. the three of us altogether) raised each other. My parents had me at a very young age and I remember them leaning on me to handle the business of taking care of myself not because they couldn’t but because they didn’t trust that they could do it better than me. I say that to say this — the mistakes that I made at a young age because I was trying to figure out what was what made me who I am today. For most of my upbringing, it was just me and my dad. My father, mother and I had a life-changing car accident when I was just six years old which left him paralyzed, my mother with TBI and me with what has felt like a perpetual #calltoaction in life. My father’s paralysis was what grounded he and I both and shaped us for a life of purpose and humble service. I was a rather odd kid who kept odd company and spent a great deal of my time volunteering for community service projects, writing grants and advocacy for the disadvantaged like paralyzed veterans, immigrants, single parent households, and the hungry. I battled depression, feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness and isolation at an early age despite my active lifestyle. As recent as two years ago, I contemplated suicide at consequence to devastating losses romantically and within my family. I am truly am my ancestors wildest dreams because they and my faith have carried me through some pretty hellish times. Today, I feel more fortuitous and blessed than I ever have. I have a marvelous life partner in my husband and a fabulously talented and creative friend who’s dedicated to my project management firm and seeing through its success. I am truly blessed.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
No, it has not been relatively smooth. It’s been particularly challenging and transformative. The road has been traveled, repaved, and even blazed. My greatest struggle has been checking my expectations of people. I have had to grow accustomed to just going out there and getting it by myself. This is not by choice, however, and I have always been cognizant of the power of family and tribe. I have always marveled at the story of the Sutton Family born of Samuel Sutton and Lillian Viola Smith Sutton. They epitomize what I mean and why I have struggled with checking my expectations of people for so long because they, like many other families of prominence and significance, layed a foundation of generational wealth and security. Successful people are made quite often by successful people. This notion of hustling and grinding it out b yourself, to me, is ultimately unsustainable and quite unfortunate and isolating. I want better and determined to do better for myself and my family moving forward.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Tacit Growth Strategies (TGS) – what should we know?
TGS! #HarvestTime #FeelTheShed #TacitGrowers #GrowthisTacit

At TGS, we are dedicated to growing successful ideas, people and organizations by harnessing the incommensurable strength and power of tacit knowledge. We are organized as Consultants specific to our interests, years of experience and diverse backgrounds. At TGS, we believe that we are culture catalysts. We use TGS as a vehicle to effect change in our personal and professional lives with the power and transcendence of tacit growth in the digital, public and private spheres of global commerce. The material transformation of work as we know it at consequence to 4IR or the Fourth Industrial Revolution calls upon us to grow our perspective of work both definitively and with regard to our values as a society of soon-to-be continental identities and politics. TGS is a project management firm in every sense of the manner that which project management is integral to managing and realizing success in personal and professional spaces. Our firm takes on gigs in Information Technology, Construction, Real Estate, Events Planning, Development, Fundraising, Grants and Proposal Writing, Non-Profit Board Development and Management Consulting. These gigs are what help the firm grow operationally and programmatically. Most importantly, these gigs are taken with the intention of reciprocity for the sponsoring organization. Simply put, TGS does the hard work and provides training for how to do that same hard work to the sponsoring organization so that they can grow more and more successful projects in a nurturing, sustainable and symbiotic environment. With TGS, we lead by replacing increasing lost value in human life, capacity and growth. We take great pride in our work as a firm and believe that growing ideas, people and organizations with human capital valued greatest best supports change, innovation and success. TGS has been featured in O, The Oprah Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine for leading in business with the most sustainable growth there is and #GrowthMindset professional development. Growth is Tacit.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Yes, shoutouts aplenty! Thank you to those who have made this very nascent journey such a successful and powerful one, especially my core supporters like my father, LaDon Chambers McKinney, my husband, Christopher Lawson, my amazingly supportive, talented and awesome Creative Consultant, Jennifer Simmons, my mother, Juanita Cummings, my sister, Taylor Cummings, my beautifully brilliant and talented mezanmi who styled me for my O, The Oprah Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine feature, Kirsten Thompson, and my business sistah and spiritual inspiration, Liz Simpson.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Creative Stylist: Kirsten Thompson, Photographer: Don Hopkins, Hair Stylist: Naana Yvette, Makeup Artist: Katherine Arlene, Olga Custodio, Everett Fly

Getting in touch: VoyageDallas is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Juanita

    February 20, 2019 at 5:05 pm

    Truly awesome young lady!!! her spirit and drive are incredible!!! My daughter is my mirror of my reflection, which amazes me. With all that life brings and takes you through when you see your child take a peace of your spirit/dreams, and make it a reality, no words can be found to explain the gratitude. I am humbled to read my daughter’s journey as well as her disappointments. She is to me a “phenomenal woman” and I am honored to call you my daughter! Love you.

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