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The amazing and inspirational journey of Dr. Shirley M. Shields started in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Born into poverty and the youngest of seven children, Shirley was reared by her mother, who was a maid. The first in her family to attend college, she was a dreamer, determined to step out on faith and follow her dream of becoming an educator. She started her career as an elementary and middle school teacher. Shirley was later promoted to several leadership and administrative positions, as she served students in the Carolinas and Georgia for 30 years. Upon retiring, she founded The Shields of Faith Foundation, Inc., a youth mentoring organization.

 

A humanitarian, who was recognized by the state of Georgia as an Outstanding Georgia Citizen, Dr. Shirley believes in the importance of supporting the youth and young adults. In 2016, she received The President's Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award, signed by President Barack Obama. She's a sought after public speaker, consultant and educational leader who enjoys meeting and helping others achieve their dreams....because every dream begins with a dreamer.

 

When Dr. Shirley is asked to share the accomplishments that she is most proud of, she responds, without hesitation, that her two daughters are her greatest accomplishments. They are very accomplished young women, now with families of their own, yet make time to commit to community service. She recalls how responsible they were as latch-key children while she attended graduate school at night. Responsibility, commitment and compassion for others are not traits taught, but observed. There is no doubt that observing a single mother, working on a doctoral degree, while paying college tuition for two girls, on an educator's salary, laid the foundation for strong determined minds to excel in a world that's not always fair or easy.  This, along with the volunteer services that they continually engage in, as a family, certainly makes for the compassion they possess and humanitarian work they all continue to provide.

 

Dr. Shirley M. Shields now basks in the joy of being "GiGi" to her two grandchildren. She says that she would not change anything in her life, because the rewards were all in her journey.....

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