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Letitia Clark is a renowned author, esteemed community leader, and former mayor who currently serves as a local elected official. As a devoted wife and mother of three, including teenage twins and a toddler, Letitia has excelled in both her professional and personal life. Notably, she made history as the first Black-female mayor of Tustin, California, all while balancing the demands of motherhood - welcoming her third child while in office. Letitia's outstanding achievements have earned her multiple accolades, including the Obama Public Service Award, four "forty under forty" awards, Most Influential in Orange County, and Champion for Kids award. Her passion for advocating for women and girls has led her to launch initiatives such as the Girls in Government Summit and Lemonade Day - Youth Entrepreneur Program, earning her further recognition for her impactful work. In addition to her notable leadership and advocacy efforts, Letitia is also a best-selling author with Halo Publishing International.
Letitia's new book Baby's Room to the Board Room is now available for purchase from all major online retailers.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I was inspired to write my first book, Mommy is the Mayor, because while serving as a local mayor and councilmember, I realized that my own kids did not exactly grasp all that a mayor does. I wrote the children’s book for them and all kids and families to learn more and gain an appreciation for all the local public servants do on behalf of the community. Additionally, I wanted to help normalize images of women of color serving as leaders in the community.
My second book, Baby’s Room to the Boardroom is geared towards working moms came about as a result of the questions I was asked during the promotion of my first book related to work-life balance, overcoming imposter syndrome to lead, and how to live a life that includes being fulfilled at work and at home.
How did you come up with the title?
Baby’s Room to the Boardroom helps describe what the book is about—parallels that exist between parent-life and professional life. I have found overtime that the lessons I’ve learned as a mom, often translate into problem solving and overcoming barriers at work. The book serves as a reminder to all moms that we don’t have to be two separate people burning candles from both ends. Instead we can remind ourselves of the lessons learned from being moms to bossing up in our careers.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I believe moms should be viewed as assets not liabilities in the workplace. With inadequate maternity leave policies and continued discrimination for women when taking breaks in their career to raise their families, we must change the narrative. At the very least, moms should relinquish imposter syndrome and embrace their true mom boss within, because we are equipped with a great deal of experience that can be extremely valuable in the workplace.
How much of the book is realistic? Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All 25 lessons in the book are based on my own personal experience in motherhood, and how I learned to relate that lesson to succeeding in one or more areas of my career. The lessons are extremely relatable to moms regardless of the present stage of their kiddos. Additionally, dads and people without kids have told me how relatable the lessons are, as it connects to anyone in a parent or caregiving role who also works full-time.
What book are you reading now?
I am really loving “How are you, really?” by Jenna Kutcher who talks candidly about how to ask yourself real questions about your mental health and capacity to show up in life verus getting lost in the business that life can often present.
Who designed the covers?
I actually designed the cover and the design was enhanced by my publishing company, Halo Publishing International.
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The hardest part was just about being honest, transparent, and vulnerable about the challenges of motherhood, and the self-doubt that I have had to grapple with and revealing that to readers. That aspect of the book, however, has made the lessons that much more relatable and allows readers to be actionable in their next steps of accomplishing success at home and in their careers.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
If there is something you would like to read, but it has not been created, then fill the void and write. Also write and edit later. Editing along the way makes it difficult to actually finish the work, which is what stalls most writers from reaching a finished product. Finally, set aside time everyday to write something. Whether it is a title of the next chapter or 30 pages, write every day until you’ve reached a point that feels complete.
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