November 17, 2008

Dreamers into Doers Finalists, and Dr. Maya Angelou

Update: Don't forget! People can still vote for their favorite Dreamers honoree in the online People's Choice Awards up until this Wed the 19th HERE where you can also learn more about all of the honorees and see photos of their projects and businesses.

On November 12th, I announced the winner of the second annual Dreamers into Doers contest. This is a very special event for me because the focus is on women who have turned a dream into a business that makes a profound difference in the lives of others. The grand prize includes $10,000 to be spent on the business, Vacations for a Lifetime with Wyndham Vacation Ownership, a trip to New York City to appear on my show, and this year, Hewlett- Packard generously gave $10,000 in computer products and services! How exciting!

In May, we extend an invitation to visit my Web site and submit an essay about yourself, or a woman you know, and how a dream or hobby was turned into a flourishing career. Well, we received thousands of essays this year and read them all. It’s always difficult to be the judge, but we narrowed the essays down to eleven finalists and paid visits to them. After much consideration, we chose Amy Jaffe Barzach, who began Boundless Playgrounds – wonderful play areas for everyone, but especially for children and adults with physical handicaps. Please click here and have a look at the show! Maya Angelou also appeared and read her poem, Phenomenal Woman. And congratulations to all the finalists –you are all amazing and very inspiring!

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman

Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Maya Angelou

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Here I am with our Living Legend recipient, Dr. Maya Angelou.