A dynamic, consummate, and passionate businesswoman across the social services field for more than a decade, Nicole Mays-Jackson is reengineering the systemic structure of how fostering, adoption, therapeutic services, and the social services profession operates.
As the youngest woman of color to own and successfully manage a business providing home and community-based services, foster care, and adoption services, Nicole is a pioneer in her field, blazing a trail of regenerated, impactful, and sustainable practices across the social services landscape. She is the founder and CEO of 1 Care Premier Services and 1 Care Premier Medical Supply. She is a proud two-time alum of Grambling State University, earning her Bachelor’s and Master’s in social work from the prestigious HBCU. To her credibility, Nicole also boasts nearly ten certifications within her industry and has over a decade of experience in both the public and private sectors.
As a selfless and staunch advocate for women in business, Nicole engages with a myriad of female entrepreneurs through mentorship, helping to foster their confidence, encourage their personal and professional growth, and advise them on essential business tactics to promote advancement and stability within their businesses. Driven by her belief in the power of “paying it forward,” she is committed to uplifting women and helping them achieve their goals, citing her own struggles experienced in her journey as the catalyst to make entrepreneurship more accessible and attainable for others.
She attributes her well-deserved stature and massive success to her relationship with God. A self-described woman of faith and prayer, she also encourages the women she mentors to always remember their spiritual foundation. She is a wife, a mother, a philanthropist, and a titanic powerhouse within the social services field, and she’s far from finished.
Christina: What is your SwagHer? What makes Nicole, Nicole?
Nicole: I am a loving and vibrant person who loves the Lord. I encourage women to become the best version of themselves through my testimony. I am one of the first black women to found and operate a foster care, adoption, and home and community-based service agency. But what makes Nicole, Nicole? My relentless pursuit is to be the best at whatever I’m undertaking. I desire to give, my spirit of excellence and my drive to make a difference to all and through all aspects of my life.
Christina: Why did you decide to go into the field of social services?
Nicole: I went into the social services field because of my passion for families and children and my desire to help others. I wanted to counsel those who are underserved and who are out of bounds of the resources and support they need to address and adhere to their wellness. Healthy individuals create healthy families, and healthy families create healthy communities. My experiences before entering the professional realm of social services showed me how many people were not healthy but just needed a little support to get there. I wanted to be that bridge to help them access wellness for themselves and the children in their care.
Christina: What are two of the most important things you have learned as a social services professional that you carry with you at all times?
Nicole: I have learned that everyone, despite their economic or social status, deserves honor and respect. I have learned to look for the light and strength these families possess despite their hardship or situation and to help them see it within themselves. That’s the key to resiliency and the key to developing the solutions they need to stabilize their families and their lives.
Christina: What inspired you to start your businesses, 1 Care Premier Services and 1 Care Premier Medical Supply?
Nicole: I was led to start 1 Care Premier Services through my personal faith and my exposure to the social services field through my work experiences. Honestly, it has been one of the greatest and most rewarding decisions I have ever made. I knew I wanted to create a business that would be sustainable and vital to underserved communities and that served them in ways in which other agencies were not serving them.
In conjunction with my husband, who is in the medical field, 1 Care Medical Supply was started to assist our clients in the intellectual or developmental disability community. Those who needed assistance with medical items tarte after we saw a need while working with other medical supply companies.
Christina: How can readers learn more about the things 1 Care provides?
Nicole: Readers can learn more about 1 Care by visiting our website, www.1carepremierservices.com.
Christina: Define businesswoman in your own words.
Nicole: As I think about how I would define a businesswoman, I’m reminded of the virtuous woman in Proverbs 31. She is trustworthy, a hard worker, wise, a good manager, and faithful to God. A businesswoman is compassionate, helpful, faithful, fierce, praiseworthy, and confident. Proverbs 31 does not say she is perfect, but she makes it work in spite of it all. That is my definition of a businesswoman.
A businesswoman is a “shero.” In an era that still views women as less valuable in the workplace than their male counterparts, businesswomen start businesses to assign value to themselves and their skills, instead of waiting for others’ validation. They build businesses to follow their passions and to control their destinies. In turn, they are creating opportunities for others, bolstering the economy, and launching legacies. That is a powerful lead to follow! We provide solutions to many of our global communities’ issues through our business acumen, emotional intelligence, and abilities to handle challenges with grace and tenacity. To me, that’s nothing short of miraculous and heroic.
Christina: What three tips can you give a family out there hoping to adopt or become foster parents?
Nicole: My tips are to be patient, flexible and have realistic expectations for yourself and the children you plan to support.
Christina: Why did you choose to attend an HBCU, other than the fact that you are African-American?
Nicole: I chose to attend an HBCU in high school and visited non-HBCUs and HBCUs. To me, the pride and supportive atmosphere of the HBCUs I visited was something that I had not experienced before, and I knew I wanted that experience for myself as a college student. I felt like I was not just a number. I felt like it was where I belonged.
Christina: What drew you to Grambling State University?
Nicole: Beyond GSU being one of the country’s top producers of African American graduates, Grambling was appealingly the total opposite from Houston, Texas, where I was born and raised. Grambling was a place that allowed me to have a new lease on life and to experience a new environment. I was drawn to the country life, the support, meeting new people from all over the world, and gaining my independence.
Christina: Do you have any words of encouragement you can give to young women out there who inspire to be in the field of social work or entrepreneurship?
Nicole: Give yourself grace, be patient with yourself, keep your faith, never give up, and always be willing to learn and grow!
Christina: Is there anything else you would like to share?
Nicole: Thanks so much for allowing me to grace your platform! I truly admire what you are doing for women!
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