Welcome to my dfree® blog. I hope these thoughts will help someone think new thoughts and take new actions toward their financial freedom. The proverb says that "the borrower is slave to the lender." (Proverbs 22:7) I have dedicated the rest of my life to helping people obtain spiritual and economic freedom.

dfree® Around the Country: Indy Ministry Reduces More than $230K in Debt

Class Hosted by Overcoming Church Reduces Debt by $230,000+, Saves $57,500+

dfree® Financial Freedom Curriculum Makes Impact on Indianapolis


On Thursday, Aug. 8, 49 Indianapolis community members walked across the stage and steps closer to a life-changing goal of financial freedom thanks to the 12-week dfree® class facilitated by Overcoming Church (OCC).  


Spearheaded by Senior Pastor Bruce Farr and Executive Pastor Loretta Farr, OCC exceeded its 2019 combined debt reduction goal by more than 203 percent—resulting in approximately $230,643 vin debt reduction. The class also accomplished a combined increase in savings of $57,595. This was OCC’s fourth year hosting the program.


“dfree® revolutionized how I feel, think and act as I revamp financial management and stewardship for my life,” said Lillie Skipwith, a former dfree class participant.

Participants also commended the class’ collaborative environment and support from classmates.

“dfree®’s learning environment is very conducive to self-improvement,” said Dalaun Williams. “Being surrounded by others with similar goals is inspiring and helps you to better focus on your own.”

Also during Thursday’s ceremony, attendees heard of the program’s impact from the graduates themselves. Several community leaders were on hand to recognize the dfree graduates including Gloria Crawford, vice president and office manager of Lake City Bank’s Indianapolis Clearwater branch, Willie Roper, Indianapolis Urban League Board Chair, and SBA Indiana Deputy District Director Martin Anderson.


Church leaders shared that this success wouldn’t be possible without community partners including Lake City Bank and the Marion County Prosecutor’s office.


Class Structure

OCC’s dfree 12-week class began on Feb. 7 and was divided into four levels: “Getting Started,” “Gaining Control,” “Getting Ahead” and “Giving Back.” In the first level, participants addressed their current financial state and clearly defined their life goals.

In level two, participants put these goals into action with the guidance of skilled facilitators. They created a spending plan, set milestones to financial freedom and were held accountable by their community of classmates.


“The presenters excel in their particular areas,” said Skipwith. “They come with valuable information, incentives and additional opportunities to aid in the dfree journey.”      

In level three, participants learned how to “maximize the margins” with methods that allow participants to build wealth, savings and an investment plan, while also minimizing stress through estate planning and other practices.

Level four brought OCC’s dfree class full-circle with the “Giving Back” level. In this final and pivotal level, participants invested in others through tithing, leadership/mentorship and community engagement. They were also charged to “Impact the Culture” by setting daily examples, pointing others to financial freedom and becoming a trained dfree class facilitator.


About Overcoming Church: Overcoming Church (OCC) opened its doors in December of 1992 in a downtown warehouse and has since expanded into a campus setting. Led by Senior Pastor Bruce Farr and Executive Pastor Loretta Farr, OCC is a thriving ministry growing to meet the needs of its surrounding community. OCC is a multi-cultural, non-denominational church with a passion to reach the lost and a commitment to equip and empower the believer through its 35 ministries along with discipleship groups and a variety of biblical foundational classes. OCC is located at 2203 Columbia Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46205, and can be found on Facebook at Church Overcoming and Instagram @OvercomingChurch.


About dfree®: Founded in 2005 by DeForest B. Soaries, Jr., dfree® is a financial freedom movement that addresses the cultural, psychological and spiritual influences on financial wellness and offers practical strategies for achieving financial success. As the only faith-based, wealth-building system specifically designed with the black community in mind, dfree® delivers access to financial freedom. dfree® uses a variety of tools to educate, motivate and support people who make the choice to achieve and sustain financial freedom. 

It’s Time to Enroll in MoneyLion Banking 101

Thanks for your interest in joining the dfree® and MoneyLion community!

My name is Anscia, and I’m part of the MoneyLion family. As a recent graduate and new homeowner, I really value the financial tools I’ve received from my MoneyLion membership.

When I finished up my master’s program, got married, and moved all the way across the country to California two years ago, I had to figure out a financial game plan with my husband in a hurry. More than ever, I needed ways to keep my finances in check.

I not only started working at MoneyLion at this time, but I also started using the MoneyLion app to monitor my credit score, alert me when I’m spending too much, and provide me with financial literacy content. MoneyLion was the personal finance app that I needed!

Recently, after a year of renting, my husband and I decided to chase a wild dream — buy a house in the Bay Area. We had saved up for a down payment and monitored our credit scores using the app to prepare us to get the best interest rate on our mortgage. After months of searching, my husband and I purchased a 3-bedroom and 2.5 bathroom home with a backyard for our puppy to play in!

I also really enjoy my MoneyLion Visa Debit Card. I can earn cashback and rewards to spend on date nights with my husband or snacks for my puppy. Even after the purchase of our home, we’re still saving for our future. MoneyLion is continuing to help my family create healthy financial habits, which is our new lifestyle, especially when the world is moving pretty fast.

I hope you’ll enjoy MoneyLion membership benefits as much as I do. MoneyLion is honored to partner with dfree® to provide financial tools that empower you to attain your dreams, whether that’s homeownership, building generational wealth, or something unique to you.

There’s an entire community here rooting for you to join America’s most powerful financial membership today and start investing in you! Here We Roar.

Join the dfree® MoneyLion community today!

dfree®Financial Freedom Movement to Offer Solutions for African Americans to Break Financial Barriers with New MoneyLion Partnership

dfree®Financial Freedom Movement to Offer Solutions for African Americans to Break Financial Barriers with New MoneyLion Partnership

MoneyLion to provide powerful financial tools and services to help bring financial wellness to a traditionally underserved community

NEW YORK, NY – July 17, 2019 –According to FDIC, 21 percent of African Americans do not have a bank account and 33 percent are underbanked. For this reason, many African Americans rely on predatory payday lending options which result in high interest rates and the insurmountable reality of never paying them back and drowning in debt. Civil rights activist and author, Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr. and the dfree®Financial Freedom Movementhave teamed up with MoneyLion, America’s most powerful financial membership, to combat these financial issues with real solutions for change. dfree® is a values-based, wealth-building system designed specifically with the black community in mind.

“dfree®was created to give African Americans freedom from the chains of high-interest debt and to assist in closing the wealth gap, and we are excited to finally share the tools with our community that will enable them to get ahead of their financial problems and make their goals achievable,” said Dr. DeForest B. Soaries Jr., Founder and CEO of dfree®. “One of my frustrations in the past has been that we’ve not been able to really help people solve financial problems. This partnership with MoneyLion provides hardworking individuals with real solutions for financial freedom.”

MoneyLion helps even the playing field to achieve financial wellness by providing the powerful tools people need to break free from financial stress, including a zero-fee checking account, zero-fee debit card, zero-fee managed investment account, 0% APR daily cash advances, cashback rewards, and personalized financial advice. Used by 5 million members, MoneyLion also provides access to responsible, low APR, credit-building loans that won’t continue the cycle of debt but rather put people in charge of their finances.

“Our mission at MoneyLion is to end financial stress for all Americans through unprecedented access to the tools they need to take control of their financial futures,” said Dee Choubey, CEO and Founder of MoneyLion. “Our partnership with dfree®will provide its members with access to our innovative and integrated technology platform to make financial freedom a reality.”

The dfree®strategy and curriculum prepares individuals to take charge of their financial future through literacy. Now, through the MoneyLion partnership, dfree®members are further empowered with access to powerful financial tools and state-of-the-art metrics to ensure continued success.

The partnership between dfree®and MoneyLion primarily focuses on two audiences: the unbanked and underbanked communities. For the unbanked population, MoneyLion offers its Core membership which includes free checking accounts, 0% APR cash advances, no overdraft fees and rewards. One of the major benefits for the underbanked population is that MoneyLion offers credit building loans at 5.99% APR in its Plus membership. Out of the current members, 70% have seen an increase in their credit scores. For fully banked dfree®members, MoneyLion offers easy-to-understand and manage investment opportunities for legacy building. One of the many reasons why predatory payday loans have had such success in urban communities is because they are advertised as a way for people with no or bad credit to get quick cash. MoneyLion offers access to new ways to save, invest, borrow and grow.

dfree®members can sign up for MoneyLion at a discounted rate to take advantage of zero-fee checking, hassle-free saving, fully managed investment accounts and personalized financial advice. MoneyLion will further amplify dfree®‘s existing 12-step program to becoming debt free and inspire the community to earn rewards, make smart investments and save for the future.

For more information about this partnership, please visit: http://get.moneylion.com/dfree/.


For media inquiries, please contact Jasmine Walden at jwalden@corpcominc.com.


About dfree Financial Freedom Movement:

As the only faith-based, wealth-building system specifically designed with the black community in mind, dfree® delivers access to financial freedom. dfree® uses a variety of tools to educate, motivate and support people who make the choice to achieve and sustain financial freedom. dfree® began as a faith-based initiative to help stem an epidemic of overspending, particularly in the African-American community. dfree® has grown into a movement that gives participants the: ability to handle their own financial responsibilities; willingness to help others do the same; and, capacity to leave assets for future generations.

In the tradition of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., dfree® also is a movement to help achieve economic justice in America. Rev. Dr. King once said, “We must never let it be said that we spend more for the evanescent and ephemeral than for the eternal values of freedom and justice.” dfree® emphasizes controlling money matters so that individuals have the freedom to focus on more purposeful pursuits.

About MoneyLion:

MoneyLion is America’s most powerful financial membership, which empowers people to take control of their finances. Since its launch in 2013, MoneyLion has amassed more than five million members and has earned its customers’ trust with new mobile onlinebankingand managedinvestmentservices that offer a one-of-a-kindcashback rewardsprogram, no-fee checking account, overdraft protection, andloansfunded in 15 seconds. From a single mobile app, users can get a 360-degree snapshot of their financial lives and have access to personalized tips and tools to build andimprove their creditand achieve everyday savings.

A brand committed to ending financial stress for all hard-working Americans, MoneyLion created the Financial Heartbeat, the industry’s first health tracker for finances. MoneyLion knows that good habits are formed over time, so the Financial Heartbeat rewards users for decisions that move them closer to their financial goals.

MoneyLion’s success relies on finding ways to make its members’ money work as hard as they do. MoneyLion is headquartered in New York City, with offices in San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

For more information, visitwww.moneylion.comor download the app.


MoneyLion’s affiliate, ML Wealth LLC, is a Registered Investment Advisor with the SEC. MoneyLion Plus members’ investments are protected by the SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corporation) for up to $500,000. Brokerage services provided to clients of ML Wealth by Drive Wealth LLC, a member of FINRA/SIPC. Other services provided by our affiliates include ML Plus, LLC. This communication and all data are for informational purposes only and do not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell securities. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Keep in mind that investing involves risk. The value of your investment will fluctuate over time and you may gain or lose money. Nothing in this communication should be construed as an offer, recommendation, or solicitation to buy or sell any securities or services.

The Legacy Lives On

The Legacy Lives On

By Nzingha Florence, Intern

When it comes to the word “legacy,” there are multiple definitions that are used to describe the meaning of this noun. After doing a quick Google search on the word legacy, I learned it is defined as an amount of money or property left to someone in a will or something handed down by a predecessor. While I believe all these definitions to be correct, watching the ‘Legacy Lives On’ documentary changed my perspective on the concept of legacy drastically, especially when I viewed it through the lens of being a young black woman in America. Legacy in this context is much more complex than passing on a simple gift from one generation to another. It’s about overcoming generational trauma and continuing to break down the barriers of racial injustice, just as our ancestors did before us.

Legacy Lives On aired on Wednesday June 19, 2019 at 9 p.m. EST on TV One. Urban One and Prudential Financial Inc. partnered to create a work that opened up the conversation of how financial freedom relates to legacy in the black community. Prior to watching this film, the idea of what I wanted my legacy to be was something that didn’t often cross my mind. That changed once I heard the stories of three black women from the creative and vibrant cities of Tulsa, Detroit, and Atlanta. Their stories exemplified how they wanted financial freedom not only to benefit themselves, but to benefit their families and their communities as well. In a country where the African American people have been systematically oppressed for centuries and it feels like we have no one to lean on but each other, the only way to continue our legacy is to support, uplift, and encourage one another in all aspects of life. One way legacy was described in the documentary was “planting seeds that will grow trees whose shade you will never sit under.” This was the quote that ultimately transformed my view on legacy. It revealed to me that my legacy shouldn’t just be about how my accomplishments are perceived, and that building a legacy worth continuing isn’t born out of selfishness. Legacy is about creating an ecosystem that is viable and transferable for all who come after you, even when you don’t reap the benefits of the seeds you planted. I realized that this was the similarity Onikah, Audrey, and Jewel shared in their stories, despite them being from different areas in the United States and going through different trials and tribulations. Something they equally share was their determination to excel financially as well as provide for those around them. Whether it be for their city, their children, or other black peers working towards the same goal as them, they were adamant in creating a legacy for a cause they cared about. They used resources geared towards helping diverse groups, such as Dr. DeForest Soaries’ dfree initiative and Atlanta’s diverse networking site The Gathering Spot, to take those steps towards building their legacy.

If I could describe the Legacy Lives On documentary in three words, it would be intriguing, inspirational, and inclusive. I admired the fact that a bit of each city’s history was shared for a better understanding of these women’s stories and the background behind their struggles.

I also applauded the imagery that was included to evoke feelings of African American pride and how our culture was embedded in the film in a way that was relatable. Another quote that I felt held significance was, “when money becomes reciprocal in the community, it stops feeling like money and starts to feel more like a bloodline.” There is a constant theme that reappears in this film about how when we view money as a tool to serve a greater purpose, we will use our money more wisely. This message is relevant for all age groups, but especially my generation because we are just now being introduced to the responsibilities that come with creating our own legacy and determining what we want that legacy to look like. Overall, Legacy Lives On is a film that emphasizes the importance of financial success and legacy within the black community, information we should all educate ourselves with to progress in society.

In the News: From Debt to Financial Freedom: Dr. Soaries Talks Building and Protecting a Legacy

This article originally appeared on MadameNoire.com.

African-American pastor and civil rights activist, Dr. DeForest Soaries, founder of the dfree® Financial Freedom movement, focuses on reducing debt and building wealth within black communities through his Billion Dollar Challenge campaign. Inspired by his late-grandmother, a woman who had no civil rights, but owned residential property, Soaries channeled his energy toward building wealth. In this clip presented by Prudential and Urban One, Soaries explains what it is to build and protect your legacy. From redeveloping neighborhoods to building institutions, Soaries encourages the Black community to be financially well and benefit from his ideas around money management.

In the News: Prudential Partners on Film to Foster Financial Wellness for Black Millennial Women

This article originally appeared on NJBiz.com.

“What does legacy mean to you?” opens a new film produced through a partnership with media conglomerate Urban One, and underwritten by Newark-based Prudential Financial Inc., which seeks to expose black millennials, particularly women, with a starting point to gaining financial wellness, and freedom.

Legacy Lives On was presented during a special hometown screening at NJPAC on Tuesday with opening remarks from Prudential President of Individual Life Insurance Salene Hitchcock-Gear; Urban One Chief Executive Officer Alfred Liggins III; and actor, producer and Image Award winner Laz Alonso, who is also featured in the film.

“No one told me how not to be poor anymore,” Alonso said introducing the film, or what to do with money once you got it, he added.

For Prudential, legacy starts by recognizing the past, even the parts of it that can’t be glamourized.

Being involved with a film like Legacy Lives On is an important step for the company in confronting its own history on the wrong side of progress, Shané Harris, vice president, Corporate Social Responsibility for Prudential, said during a panel discussion exploring the film and access to capital following the screening.

Hitchcock-Gear also touched on the role that being involved with a project like Legacy Lives On played for Prudential, allowing the company to listen to voices in the film, and community, to help shape its approach for assisting this specific demographic on the path to financial wellness.

Legacy Lives On centers on three women in three cities on three separate financial paths. “The women in this film are amazing,” the panel recognized, “but they are not unique.”

The film is a way to introduce financial wellness to the community, panel member The Budgetnista Tiffany Aliche said, if you show proof of achievement that means you can do it as well.

The unconventional approach, using a film to engage its audience, provides its message with a springboard for generational wealth in the community, Liggins said.

No longer taboo

Coupled with that community conversation is an effort toward expelling the taboo around discussing money, a topic also broached in the film.

Speaking after the screening, as part of the panel discussion moderated by Prudential Vice President of Corporate Finance Maurice Kuykendoll, DeForest “Buster” Soaries, founder of the dfree movement and also a featured speaker in the film, said that if we can break the silence around the conversation of money, we can motivate people to celebrate each other’s success.

At the close of the discussion Newark-resident Aliche, who is also featured in the film, presented the Prudential 2019 Legacy Builder Award to her parents for laying the groundwork for her own financial understanding by normalizing the conversation around money as she grew up.

“Money wasn’t scary to me,” Aliche said, crediting her parents with investing the knowledge in her so that she could be successful and help so many others—including 800,000 women through her Live Richer Challenge, sponsored by Prudential, and with her efforts to pass state-wide legislation signed into law earlier this year which guarantees financial education for New Jersey middle schoolers. “Education is the key,” Aliche said, pointing to her blueprint for success grounded in knowledge, access and community.

The next step, Soaries said, is connecting what is being said with action.

Legacy Lives On bridges that gap between education and action through its medium, targeting a visually-engaged demographic, and through the way it conveys its message, including personal stories and even dance interludes, for viewers to connect with as individuals and as a community.

“Once you have access to information race doesn’t matter anymore,” said Ma’at Zachary, a television, film and creative producer who worked on the film, and participated in the panel discussion.

Group effort

On the idea of “we’re all in this together,” the panel also highlighted the importance of fostering economic empowerment, self-determination and finding the right tools, sentiments echoed in each city featured in the film: in a reception welcoming a new small business owner to the community in Tulsa; in the dfree program which is fostering financial freedom in Detroit; and at The Gathering Spot in Atlanta, a private, members-only innovative network space.

Throughout the evening several speakers highlighted the importance of having a trusted partner on the path to financial wellness, and the part Prudential plays in that effort.

Soaries pointed to the company’s sponsorship of “outside-the-box” messaging with this project, and another he said the company was involved with him on for a five-part series on the late entrepreneurial rapper Nipsey Hussle.

“Legacy is also about the present,” Prudential Chief Brand Officer Niharika Shah said during the program’s closing remarks.

In the present, along with its part with Legacy Lives On, Prudential is working to increase outreach to, and products and financial solutions for, the black consumer market, Harris told NJBIZ, and having different conversations about how the company can be a partner to support those efforts and businesses.

Legacy Lives On will screen at the Black American Film Festival in Miami Beach on June 15. It will premiere on CLEO TV and Urban One on June 19.

In the News: Tamika Stembridge is Encouraging Financial Freedom Among Women with New Talk Show

This article originally appeared on UrbanGirlMag.com.

Newark, NJ – On June 6th Tamika Stembridge and her team premiered a sneak peek of her new web talk show entitled “Living dfree® with Tamika Talks.” at Loft Life Venue in Newark. The intimate reception featured women from the NJ and NYC area interested in not only watching the new talk show but in meeting Tamika herself along with like minded women.

The first episode featured Great Girlfriends podcast host Sybil Amuti. Sybil is a work from home mom, and wife who runs her own business. She shared her experiences of working from home while juggling the mom/wife life balance.

Each episode will be about 15 minutes long and you will have the opportunity to witness Tamika engaging in conversations with women and men who can lend advice based on their diverse fields of employment. “Living dfree® with Tamika Talks.” focuses on helping women at all stages of life live authentic, financially free lives. This unique show speaks specifically to black women about money, while celebrating their strength and honing the importance of financial empowerment.

When I asked Tamika about what she hoped women would take away from her show she said, “Inspiration, information, and action items, I’m all about that. I’m going to inspire you but I’m going to make you some work…”

Tamika’s goal with “Living dfree® with Tamika Talks.” is to help women of color to live holistically free, “I’ve had the privilege of doing everything I’ve ever wanted to do in my life. Good, bad  or indifferent I’ve taken all of the cliff jumps and I’ve learned a lot over the years. I never thought that I would be in a position to teach people cased on the mistakes or the challenges that I’ve experiences. I just want us all to have the freedom to gout and live our dreams but to do it in a way that’s responsible and really makes sense both financially, spiritually, mentally and all of that. I want us to be holistically free and if I can lay myself on the line with other people to share that with them then that’s what I want to do.”

You can watch new episodes of Tamika Talks every other Tuesday at 8 pm on youtube.

In the News: Film ‘Legacy Lives On’ Premieres at ABFF, Follows Financial Journey of Three Black Women

This article originally appeared on BlackEnterprise.com.

Prudential, in partnership with Urban One, screened Legacy Lives On at the American Black Film Festival on June 15 in Miami, and it will air publicly on TV One at 9 p.m. ET on June 19, and again on CLEO TV on June 20, 2019. The 45-minute film follows the financial journey of three black women and highlights the relationship African Americans have with money, particularly when debt, financial literacy, and systematic challenges are at play.

African American households lag sorely in wealth compared to white households. According to the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), black households receive an underwhelming 61.6% of the yearly income earned by an average white household. This disparity is due in part to the racial income gap in which black employees bring home 82.5 cents for every dollar white workers earn; substantially contributing to black poverty. It should come as no surprise, then, that the most recent data suggests black people are more than twice as likely to experience poverty than whites. Therefore, the timing of such a documentary is ideal.

Legacy—this type of film talks about all the things we don’t talk about,” Salene Hitchcock-Gear told BLACK ENTERPRISE. Hitchcock-Gear, the president of Prudential Individual Life Insurance, continued: “For women, especially women who are trying to move forward, we don’t have a lot of good tools to start with. It’s not normal to talk to people about savings, investments, how to get financing for anything, or just deal with budgets, or getting out of debt. This effort starts to put language in people’s hands and try to break through that environment where we don’t talk.”

Talking candidly to an entire nation about the state of their finances and the history of how they each handled money wasn’t an easy thing to do for Onikah Asamoa-Caesar, Jewel Burks-Solomon, and Audrey Hurst. However, doing so proved to be beneficial for each woman who participated in the film.

“My experience was very interesting because it gave me an opportunity to reflect about the legacy I want to build,” Burks-Solomon shared with BE. “I had a chance to have a conversation with my mother and talk about the things she instilled in me at an early age and thank her for the things she taught me along the way and have that dialogue we haven’t had before.”

Hurst expressed her initial hesitation on disclosing her financial secrets: “I was definitely scared for people to know what I was going through financially because we don’t have those conversations as black people, but I had someone in my ear telling me to step out on faith so that’s what I did and said, ‘I’m gonna tell my story.”

A documentary like Legacy Lives On would not be complete without Tiffany Aliche, “The Budgetnista’s” two cents—which is nothing short of the financial wisdom she is known to impart. “It’s important to teach black women about money,” Aliche stated. “Prudential had a study where they show that black women make up to 70% of the financial decisions in the household.”

Aliche added: “That means if you want to shift the black family, community, and culture forward, then you have to do it through black women. We are essential. Without us, there would be no strong community, family, or culture. We have been left out of the conversation for too long. You see that in Legacy Lives On.”

Actor Laz Alonso contributed to the conversation, addressing generational poverty that affects people of color: “Black and brown people are learning their worth,” Alonso told BE. “Up until now, everyone knew our worth except us. We have the talent, we have the ability to bring crowds, and have a community to support us and bring their dollars, but where was the money going? Now we see a lot of artists buying back their materials, their intellectual property, their block—and they’re also diversifying [their earning potential]. There are so many ways to make money. It was important for Prudential to be on the leading end of that conversation.”

Other contributors include Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, motivational speaker Lisa Nichols, Rev. Dr. DeForest B. Soaries Jr., producer Ma’at Zachary, and Prudential’s vice president of Corporate Giving Shané Harris. And while a film initiative on dialogue about money and finance may seem unlikely to screen at ABFF, it’s actually more aligned with the event than not.

“For Prudential as a financial institution, we don’t always have the right connects, through the community to actually get the message out,” Hitchcock-Gears said. “This particular festival is so much grassroots, people on the ground, that we feel like that’s the audience we’re trying to reach; the very group that needs to hear this. It includes the people here at this event. When you think about it, so many creative people don’t have consistent income. So you have to think about ‘how do I deal with that as a creative person? How do I continue my craft, but take care of myself financially?’ This is for the attendees and the creators. We think [ABFF] is a real home run and a great place for us to showcase.”

Alonso agrees, stating “To have that film here is where a lot of people need it the most because they are the ones actually self-financing their dreams. They’re the ones trying to figure out ‘I want to make this happen, but I got a 9-to-5. How can I juggle this?’ This movie is the movie that will show you others who have done it and inspire you to not waste any more time and want to do it.”

American Black Film Festival was founded by Jeff Friday to provide a platform for black filmmakers to showcase their work. In its 23rd year, the festival continues to amplify black creative talent. Learn more about the ABFF legacy, at abff.com and catch ’em on social:

Twitter: @ABFF
Facebook: American Black Film Festival
Instagram: @AmericanBlackFilmFestival
YouTube: American Black Film Festival
Hashtags: #ABFF19, #WeAreABFF

In the News: Living dfree® with Tamika Talks

Title: In the News: Living dfree® with Tamika Talks
Author: admin

This article originally appeared on SheenMagazine.com.

Financial freedom is something we all strive for in our lifetimes. Tamika Stembridge, Esq. is motivating, encouraging, and liberating women through her various platforms. In her web series, Living dfree® with Tamika Talks, she showcases black women celebrating both strength and financial empowerment. Tamika gave us a sneak peek into her series, and how we too can reach financial freedom. Read more to find out!

Can you begin by telling us a little about yourself?

First and foremost, I’m a “free black girl” and a strong black woman that playfully (but rather accurately) describes herself as existing somewhere between a Black Panther and Beyoncé. I’m an internal activist a la President of Black People (fighting on behalf of us and within us for the best outcomes for all of us) and a hard working, undeniable pop culture enthusiast (Beyoncé of the mind LOL).

Because career tends to matter, I’m a pretty multifaceted professional, too; a former entertainment attorney with an MBA in marketing, with career experiences in both corporate and non-profit America, across industries as vast as education, healthcare, entertainment, and fashion. I now lead the dfree® Global Foundation, helping African Americans to become better financially, via a holistic lifestyle-based approach.

Linking creativity, community, and commerce is my life! Excellence is my expertise!

How did you get to this point your life?

I would have to say a divine combination of ambition, hard work, and intuition. I have been blessed to experience everything I’ve ever set out to achieve professionally, thus far. I’ve always been well-studied and a researcher at heart. This helped me to be prepared every time God created a window or a doorway into what was next.

How has Living dfree® with Tamika Talks created a safe place for individuals to discuss their finances?

Living dfree® with Tamika Talks is the conversation starter that we all need, championed by phenomenal guests that don’t mind sharing the insides of their personal, professional, spiritual, and of course financial journeys. Each episode provides inspiration, information, and action-oriented insight that puts viewers at ease, while encouraging them to take a look at their own lives, lifestyles, financial ideologies, and behaviors. And I’m personally committed to doing social-media based live streams of my Q&A/discussion sessions, following the premier of each bi-weekly episode. It’s my favorite part of the entire experience!

For the average person, what are some of the first steps to financial freedom?

I would have to say:

1) Get to know your present numbers (all income sources, all bills – monthly payments mandatory for life, all debts – things that carry interest rates and/or should ultimately be paid off, and recurring personal/lifestyle expenditures). Listing these things by date really helps to balance funds throughout the month.

2) Evaluate any monthly gaps between what’s coming in and what’s going out. Try paying off the smallest debt you have, start a side hustle, or find a temporary part time job to create room to make ends meet, start saving, or to get ahead of debt.

3) Use the snowball (paying off debt from smallest to largest balance) or avalanche (from highest to lowest interest rate) method to begin attacking debt aggressively.

4) Save something, regularly! It’s not necessarily the amount that matters, but rather the habit of saving that propels you forward.

5) And last but not least, consider visiting a financial professional to begin planning for the future. Even if you’re not ready to invest at the moment, having an idea of what your ideal vision of what your retirement will. This cost is a great reality check and hopefully will motivate you to start making room in your current plans for your future self.

What’s next for you?

Well, I am excitedly awaiting the start of my biggest life project. Lord willing, I’m scheduled to become a mom in a few months. Of course, I’m looking forward to continuing my Black Presidential crusade (smile) with dfree, sharing what I’ve come to know with my sistahs and brothas as a writer, speaker, and mentor/coach, all while raising an awesome human being. Whatever God has for me beyond that, I’m open, ready, and willing.

Tamika Talks LIVE!!!! June 2019

June 2019 – Welcome Back!!!
Allow Me to Reintroduce Myself…Tamika Talks LIVE!!!!

Hey there dfree® Family,

Welcome back to Tamika Talks!, my (used to be but back on schedule) monthly check-in where you’ll get my thoughts on free and full living, of course from a dfree® perspective!

I know. I knowwww… it’s been FOREVER and a few months since I’ve written. While dfree® has been moving, shaking, growing, and such, when I revisited my writing file, it dawned on me that I’ve been proverbially “gone” since last August. But, do allow me to explain.

Life happened!!! Periodt.

Fall 2018 was filled with illness, dfree® conference planning, year-end reports, etc. Next thing you know, I was healed, it was Christmas, and welcome 2019! And the new year came in heavy!!!

Between connecting with new partners, hosting events around the country, and doing some internal business “soul-searching” and data digging, we spent the first half of the year “gettin’ to the [proverbial] money”…helping you to manage and grow yours while minding our own!

tamika talks

But here we are, on the cusp of something GREAT!

While I’ve always been comfy behind the computer, being on-camera (outside of a good IG photo opp) makes me cringe. But with the help of the dfree® Team, somehow, I managed to shoot an entire season of amazing content just for you!

Living dfree® With Tamika Talks is the ultimate get your life, girl talk web series where my guests and I tackle everything from career to family to finance in a manner that’s comfortable, confident and FUN! It’s inspirational, insightful, and incredibly tactical too. Though it’s an intimate “table talk” show, viewers will walk away from each episode with marching orders to take action to improve their lives, immediately!

Speaking of immediate, get in on the Living dfree® With Tamika Talks action NOW!!!

Meet Me In “The City”…

I’m hosting a premiere event on Thursday, June 6, 2019 in Newark, NJ. RSVP NOW to celebrate experience Tamika Talks LIVE!!! If you’re already registered, tell a friend! Can’t wait to meet you all!

Join the “Tamika Talks” Group on Billion Dollar Challenge…

I wouldn’t be Queen dfree® if I didn’t help you get your coins moving in the right direction first and foremost. Visit www.billiondollarpaydown.com. Create your confidential profile, set your debt reduction and/or savings goals, and get on the path to financial wellness with me!

Keep Up with the “T”…

While the blog is cool and the web series is hot, nothing beats a good ole gathering of the girls. Be sure to join the Tamika Talks Facebook community for exclusive content, regular catch ups, and get your life goodies dipped in dfree® sauce.

Watch Living dfree® With Tamika Talks…

Tune to the show in on Tuesday, June 11th! Visit www.youtube.com/mydfree to watch!

I don’t know about you, but momma is EXCITED!!! [wink] It’s a new season (literally) for Tamika Talks! Let’s LIVE into it, together!!

Big hugs and best wishes,

TS…The Free Black Girl

@TheFreeBlackGirl (IG)
@OGFreeBlackGirl (Twitter)

Stay tuned. Stay connected.

IG is my favorite digital destination!

@mydfree @thefreeblackgirl @dbsoaries #mydfree #TamikaTalks

…But Facebook is about to pop off too!!!

See you the internets!!

Tamika Talk-Back…

What do you think of #TamikaTalks? Email your comments to tstembridge@mydfree.org! I’d love to hear from you!