I have hinted a few times about the lady who's stolen my heart and a bit of my time as well, recently....Yes! VICTORIA NKONG is my Wednesday Woman Crush! and not because she strutting her backside in a sexy bikini on some strange remote island or gets knocked up by my favourite Hollywood male crush (I would love for that to happen to me though) Hahahah....but the fact that here's a very young lady who is driven and has accomplished quite a bit as a CREATIVE ENTREPENEUR and is still trying to push the envelope, is quite inspiring to me.
Victoria Nkong, is the CEO of QTABY CONCEPTS which is a consortium of Qtaby Events and Entertainment. She is also the Business Development Executive (BDE) in Nigeria, for the Famous French Fashion designer, JB Hounyovi and has the franchise to develop and expand his "Lé Braided Couture" a vibrant high end haute couture here in Nigeria.
The multi linguist from a town in Cross River State, Nigeria, who was a former line producer, and red carpet presenter for the highly celebrated Kora Awards....is also a Social worker and Philantropist engaged in lots of social welfare and empowerment projects and runs the JEGEDE PAUL FOUNDATION which includes the 'Life Fountain Orphanage Home', where she raises and nutures 20+ children.... I can go on and on about the inspiring tenacity of this rather young amazing woman....but so you can make up your own minds....I decided to share with you all, my interesting sit-down chat with her. Here it is.....
#1) So Victoria, when you have free time... What do you like to do to unwind?
ANS: I like to play at the beach with friends, really play like a child, sand castles, water fight e.t.c
#2) What is one of your favourite quotes?
ANS: The secret of life is not to do what you like but to like what you do..anonymous, choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life
#3) As someone who's been a red carpet presenter at Kora awards severally.. What would you say is your favourite body part for the camera!?
ANS: Errr..the legs down to the shoes, I know shoes are not part of the body but as a shoeholic, I always notice that with the legs and how it worn
#4) If you could learn to do something new, what would it be?
ANS: Alex, I think I’ll learn to sing, I mean looking at how much money these guys are going home with, singing would make sense, but too bad my voice sounds like rusty metal. Lol.
#5) If you had to work on only one project for the next year what would it be?
ANS: It’ll be a continental fashion reality show or a continental music awards
#6) If you could pick anyone as your mentor right now who would it be?
ANS: Oby Ezekweseli and my reason is simple….where do you find women who dare the devil to stand up for a country like Nigeria? That is the woman I continuously want to be, hence my respect for her.
#7) What are the things you accomplished as a young woman travelling and working outside Nigeria?
ANS: 1st of all, I was quick to notice the mark of excellence as I worked with people from different cultures so I imbibed that. For me relationship is important in life, so I made and nurtured contacts across several countries and those contacts have proven very useful to me. I am also proud to add that I was able to change the impression that Nigerians are all dubious because I upheld integrity in all my dealings, henxe the strong recommendations I get from clients all over the world
#8) You recently chose some celebrities to become brand face for the Lé Braided Couture. Why?
ANS: Looking at the Le Braided Couture brand, one needs to be careful while choosing the faces to represent it, as it is a timeless brand which cuts across age, time, achievements and class. The brand faces chosen are the Amazing Veteran Actor, Bimbo Manuel, The Super Hot and Talented Kalu Ikeagwu, The sexy and Brilliant, Alex Okoroji (blushing), The Multi-Talented Femi Brainard and 2 yet to be disclosed but equally amazing celebrities. These are worthy people that have carved a niche for themselves within their industry and it balances with the brand's high end taste for accomplishment. They also understand high end fashion and appreciate haute couture.
#9) How would you describe the fashion and entertainment culture here in Nigeria?
ANS: There is a lot going on in the industry but there is still lots of work to be done to get us to our final destination.
#10) Between being the CEO of Qtaby events and the Business Development Executive for JB Hounyovi's - Lé Braided and running a Foundation which is more tasking and fulfilling. why?
ANS: It's Impossible to choose one over the other as each of them has its’ place in my heart with it’s own challenges. The Foundation gives life a meaning for me, especially with the kids from the Home, ofcourse it gets challenging when I sleep over at the Orphanage after a hard day and I have to stay up at night with the babies or rush to the hospital at 1am with a woman in labour from the Foundation e.t.c. For Le Braided Couture, it mirrors that part of me that likes to look into the mirror to admire the way I am dressed; ok I love fashion a lot but the challenging side is keeping up with the demands of developing a new brand and living up to expectation for a brand that has had its honors internationally. For QtabyEvents, Events production has become a way of life for me, the staff of Qtaby have become my third family and so it is absolutely fulfilling with the success of each grand event and the clients satisfaction, not forgetting how challenging it could get to put together an event, the sleepless nights and endless meetings.
#11) How do you get funding and support for your foundation?
ANS: For now the funding is 99.9% internal, my partner in the Foundation is the CEO of Japaul Oil and Maritime Services Plc, we share the vision and passion for giving back to Humanity so we do all we can to ensure that our children in the Home have the best that life can offer and God has been faithful. Ofcourse we are open to partnerships that cold assist with funding but for now there isn’t any.
#12) What's the best thing about being a social worker/philantropist?
ANS: Ofcourse I love the fact that I am a mother of many without going through the 9months project….lol. But I think the best part is changing and imparting lives, putting smiles on peoples faces and giving their lives a meaning. It is the greatest thing that anyone could do in life, having people look up to you in trust without reservations.
#13) Mention one incidence that changed your life forever.
ANS: Hmmm Alex, there a quite a number of them o…I should say losing my sister at a very early age to a bad marriage is one incident that has made a great imprint in my life and changed my views about life to a great extent
#14) If you were to advise other young women who also aspire to become Creative Entrepreneurs....what would you say to them?
ANS: I’ll simply advise them to go out and get the men out of business... lol.... but really fulfilling as well as challenging, you find yourself creating job opportunities for other young people as an employer of labour, you are the master of your own time e.t.c, the ladies must stay focused and steadfast, it might seem very stormy at the beginning but in a short whil the lines will fall into pleasant places and it will all begin to make sense.
Now you all know why I'm so SMITTEN with her. And in my opinion, lots of young DEDICATED people don't get appreciated very much for the contributions they make to SOCIETY. So what do you think about my Wednesday Woman Crush, Lovelies? I find hard-working brilliant minds verrrry SEXY. What about you? Feel free to share your thoughts as always....I'm CURIOUS!
And oh! Have A Wonderful Wednesday Lovelies! Muaaah!