ARTICLE

Mary Major speaks at Iowa African-American Women's conference

Mary Major, featured speaker at annual Iowa African-American Women’s Leadership Conference, Sept. 24-25, 2009, at the Cedar Rapids Marriott.
Mary Major, featured speaker at annual Iowa African-American Women’s Leadership Conference, Sept. 24-25, 2009, at the Cedar Rapids Marriott.

Women must first learn to love who they are and the gifts they have inside them and “take this life for what it is,” actress, writer and producer Mary Major said Friday.

“Even the seemingly most together women are going to go through moments of doubt,” she said.

Major, president of Major Jack Productions and longtime celebrity interviewer on shows such as “Lifestyles with Robin Leach,” was the featured speaker at the 2009 Iowa African-American Women’s Leadership Conference at the Cedar Rapids Marriott. She talked to the multigenerational crowd about making amends with yourself and creating a strong sense of self-esteem and well-being.

“Love who you are, appreciate who you are and understand your gifts,” she said. “Never let anyone or any circumstance take your peace.”

More than 200 women from across the state attended this year’s conference, the fourth in a series presented by the African-American Museum of Iowa. Breakout sessions included those on family health, perseverance, domestic violence and leadership building.

Major told the women that loving themselves and “who the creator made you to be” is an important step in developing a strong sense of “self.”

“Loving who you are is one of the most selfless things you can do for yourself,” she said. “Once you own that, the chances of letting others abuse you, misuse you or to talk you into doing something you know is harmful go down dramatically.”

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