Englewood Cliffs, N.J.
Shartia Brantley never lost her childhood passion for a career in journalism while overcoming a speech impediment in elementary school and low self-esteem later as a teen. “Due to an acne problem, I lacked positive self-esteem to pursue broadcast journalism as an undergrad. At the time, I didn’t realize it was all about makeup and good lighting!” she explains. She earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting at Albany State University and an MBA from Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business. Journalism beckoned, however. Soon after her 31st birthday, Brantley, the youngest of nine children, resigned from her job, put her house on the market and headed to New York to attend Columbia University School of Journalism. Today, she is a segment producer for CNBC’s Street Signs, developing segments relating to the latest financial news and booking CEOs, elected officials and market strategists to appear on the show. She also reports for TheGrio.com, NBC’s African-American news video site that uses original videos and articles. “I am very passionate about my work for TheGrio. “There’s a misconception that African-Americans are not aware of or interested in what’s happening in the stock market. My mission is to bring market and economic data to our community,” she says.
With a grueling 12-hour day that starts at 4:15 a.m., Brantley exercises regularly to manage stress. “But my guilty pleasure is a day when I don’t have to set the alarm at all,” she confesses. She plans to become a motivational speaker to encourage others to pursue their life’s passion. “I am not where I want to be yet, but I am so happy I decided to fulfill my purpose, my calling. There have been tons of sacrifices, but even more joy and fulfillment. I love what I do and I’ve always wanted to be able to say that!”
Favorite book: Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
Countries visited: Italy, Aruba, Mexico
Sport you play best: Shopping