Motivational speakers provide the impetus people need to act, and Mamie McCullough is one of the best. Her background is heart-wrenching. Born in rural Georgia, one of nine children, she grew up dirt poor, poorer than anyone I've ever known. She knew life had to be better, and all she wanted was to be better.
When she was 20, she decided she wanted to go to college. She boarded a bus to take her to Howard Payne University in Brownwood, Texas. She gathered together her two dresses, a sack of her mother's fried chicken and $25. She said she didn't know she'd have to pay to go to college. She didn't know she'd have to choose a major.
Dr. Guy Newman, the president of the university at the time, was her guardian angel. He invited her to live at his house with him and his wife. He enlisted his wife's help in getting a wardrobe for Mamie, teaching her etiquette and helping her acclimate to a world apart from Dixie, Ga.
Mamie's is a stupendous success story. Not only did she earn her degree, she worked with Zig Ziglar, the motivational speaker. She was vice president of several corporations. She taught school. She was a high school principal. She has written five books. Payne University named a building after her.
I have her book, "I Can. You Can Too!" I plan to pass along some of its tidbits when I get into the book.
No one I've ever known has overcome such monumental adversity and achieved so much. Give her Web site a visit: www.mamie.com.