South Bend, IN

Meet a Bendr: Sonya Smith - Empowering South Bend's Economic Revolution

The Bendr Daily

Sonya Smith - Empowering South Bend's Economic Revolution
Sonya SmithPhoto bySonya Smith

In a city renowned for its vibrant community and rich heritage, there emerges a remarkable trailblazer. Sonya Smith, a proud native of South Bend, achieved a groundbreaking milestone as the city's first African American Valedictorian. Now, armed with an inspiring vision, she has returned to her roots with a powerful mission—to ignite an economic revolution in her hometown.

Building a Resilient Venture: In 2021, a year overshadowed by the challenges and uncertainties brought by the pandemic, Smith fearlessly established Wealth in Motion Consulting L.L.C. This innovative consultancy firm is devoted to propelling small businesses and fostering economic growth within the local market.

Captivating the Entrepreneurial Stage: Smith's entrepreneurial prowess recently caught the attention of the esteemed University of Notre Dame IDEA Center McCloskey New Venture Competition. In April 2023, she astounded the audience with two groundbreaking ventures that left a lasting impact.

Inspiring Business Institute: A Visionary Approach: One of Smith's remarkable achievements was the conception of the Inspiring Business Institute concept, which garnered significant recognition during Round 2 of the competition. Drawing inspiration from successful programs developed for the City of Mishawaka, Mishawaka Business Association, and Inspire Mishawaka, her visionary approach resonated strongly with the panel of experts. Moreover, Smith's collaboration with C2 Your Health Women's Initiative Inc., an organization dedicated to empowering women, earned them the prestigious $20,000 Social Impact Award as semi-finalists.

Forging Strong Partnerships for Lasting Impact: Since its inception, Wealth in Motion Consulting has cultivated robust partnerships, amplifying its influence within the local business ecosystem. Collaborations with the IMPower Center and the City of South Bend Small Business Assistance Suites (SBAS) have played instrumental roles in fostering a thriving environment for small enterprises. Through targeted strategies and comprehensive support, Smith and her team have empowered numerous entrepreneurs to overcome challenges and achieve financial success.

A Heartwarming Homecoming: Reflecting on her experience returning to South Bend, Smith radiates pride and gratitude. She acknowledges the tireless efforts of Mayor Mueller and Mayor Wood, who have endeavored to attract and retain talented individuals in the Michiana area. Yet, it was not solely professional opportunities that drew Smith back home; she also highlights the exceptional educational options available for her daughter through the education voucher program. Smith expresses excitement about her daughter's acceptance into La Lumiere High School, where she will continue to flourish academically and personally, appreciating the unwavering support received at Michiana Christian Academy.

Unparalleled Community Support: Smith emphasizes the abundance of remarkable programs in South Bend that played a pivotal role in her successful transition. Initiatives such as The Breakers Basketball, the South Bend P.A.L. Program, C2 Your Health Women's Initiative, the IMPower Center, and the Mishawaka Business Association have provided unparalleled community support, reinforcing the profound connection that Smith and her daughter share with South Bend.

Resilience and Achievement: Sonya Smith's story epitomizes resilience and achievement. As the first African American Valedictorian of LaSalle High School in 1991, she set the stage for her future endeavors. Driven by an insatiable thirst for knowledge, Smith pursued a BS in International Management and Spanish at Butler University, followed by an Executive MBA at Michigan State University. After an international assignment in Qatar, her deep-rooted connection to South Bend beckoned her back, compelling her to utilize her expertise for tangible change within the community.

Empowering Individuals and Businesses: Wealth in Motion Consulting, L.L.C., the consultancy agency founded by Sonya Smith in March 2021, exemplifies her visionary approach and unwavering commitment to empower individuals and businesses. Leveraging her extensive experience in managing teams responsible for contracts up to $1 billion, Smith's consultancy focuses on business coaching, financial coaching, and city program development. Through revolutionary strategies and personalized guidance, Wealth in Motion Consulting assists clients in achieving greater financial outcomes, both domestically and internationally.

A Lasting Impact on the Community: Smith's profound connection to South Bend, nurtured by her international experiences, impelled her to establish Wealth in Motion Consulting, L.L.C., with the determination to uplift local businesses and stimulate economic growth. This endeavor is a testament to her expertise and experience, destined to leave a lasting impact on the community.

For more information about Sonya Smith and the transformative work of Wealth in Motion Consulting, visit their website at Explore the Inspiring Business Institute at For inquiries and further information, reach out to Sonya Smith, EMBA, the Founder of Wealth in Motion Consulting, L.L.C., at

A Remarkable Transformation Unfolds: In the capable hands of Sonya Smith, South Bend witnesses a remarkable transformation—a harmonious fusion of empowerment, economic growth, and community support that forges a brighter future for all. As Smith's journey continues to unfold, she stands as a poignant reminder that dreams can be realized, and change can be achieved, empowering one individual at a time.

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