Name: Janell Johnson
Hometown: Chester, PA
Company: City of Chester, The Suite by J. Nicole &Co., Suite 828 Co. LLC
Position: City of Chester- Human Resources Generalist. Owner of The Suite by J.Nicole & Co. Boutique Aston PA. Owner Suite 828 Co. LLC
Length of time you have been with your company: City of Chester- 1 year 4 months. The Suite by J. Nicole & Co. 2 years. Suite 828 Co. LLC 5 years.
Briefly describe your journey, noting both personal milestones and obstacles you may have faced along the way. My journey consists of 2 different paths that take a lot of balancing. Being a 9-5er and entrepreneur on top of being a mother can be a lot, overwhelming at times. However, this journey has been a rewarding one. My daughter is seeing all the things that are possible with a little faith and work ethic. Both my business and I have been awarded multiple times (This Missing Plug "Entrepreneur of the Year" 2021 and 2023, The Missing Plug "Best New Business of the Year" 2022, Buy from a Black Woman "Home Goods Business of the Year" 2020, and Hustle Hard Recognition Award Honors 2020)
How did you hear about LDC and why did you sign up to take part in it? I was encouraged by a family member and previous participan, Brittany Hales, to apply. I'm always looking for ways to grow and be stronger in everything I'm building. I want to be a great leader, one that invests in being my best self and helping others become their best selves.
What inspires you? How does that inspiration play into your professional life? I'm inspired by the dreamers and disruptors of the world. The ones who make a way out of no way. I'm inspired by my daughter, mother, and grandmother because I've watched them overcome so many adversities. I'm inspired by my father who was murdered when I was 6, who left an impact on so many in his short time on this Earth.
Briefly, describe a transformative moment that helped to shift your approach to your career. A transformative moment that helped to shift my approach to my careers was having my daughter. She was born prematurely but seeing her fight and seeing where she is now, makes me feel like I have no excuses! This tiny 2 pound human fought and didn't give up, why should I? She keeps achieving great things. SHe's 6 in the second grade, testing on 3rd and 4th grade levels. She teachers herself so much, My daughter motivates me and shifts my thinking to being more resourceful and solution driven.
What leaders, thinkers or doers do you admire most? Why? I admire so many leaders for many different reasons, but mostly the ones who are in the community, boots to the grown, making a change. The leaders who have the means to pack up and leave, but haven't because they know there's work to do in our community.
What has been the most valuable professional advice and/or lesson you’ve received. The most valuable professional advice and lesson I've received is "You don't know everything, remain a student."