On Sunday July 15, 2012 us girls had mentor night which was a very inspirational evening. All the women we met were very wise with their words.

The first speaker was Melani Chong, she is the creator of a natural skin care line called soya boutique. Melani decided to basically, in short form, tell her life up to the point of her creating her line. She discussed how she became a Ford model because of her dad seeing something in the mall. At first she had doubts about becoming a model because she always

thought of herself as an athlete in highschool ,so modeling would be a BIG transformation for her. So then she signed with Ford models and in some way she still had doubts about becoming a model, she felt like she could do more for herself. Then she became a stylist and worked with top photographers, but she still felt like there was something more. When she was pregnant with her first child she realized health was very important and that is when she came up with her skin care line. One thing she said to us that she wanted to get across was that PASSION lead to DRIVE and drive leads to ACTION! Make that impact.

The next mentor was Katrina Hadden. Katrina wrote a health book call “Making it in High Heels”. She also started a bit about her life in school and how she found it very frightening walking through the halls because she was bullied because of how tall she was. Katrina was also athletic, she was a basket ball player. She had her life planned out, she was going to finish school and get a scholarship for basketball and then go on to the WBA, but during a scrimmage at her practice, she injured her knee. So, because of her friends, she became a model, but was so confused of where she would fit in (being a size 12). So the first thing she thought of was to lose weight, but she did it the wrong way. Katrina started to have an eating disorder but the definitely didn’t work, she didn’t fit in anywhere. Starting off new she left Ottawa and moved to Toronto, she was very determined to get a new point across, she wanted there to be a “third group”, one group for all the girls who weren’t super skinny, but weren’t plus size models either. She finally found the model agency Ben Barry who had the exact same thought about “in between models”. Katrina wanted everyone to know that even through bullying and shyness, you have got to feel confident and to make sure you know that you have a place in this world. 5 tips on how to be a good role model:

1)      Make sure you take care of your health, so drink lots of water.

2)      Carry an attitude of gratitude

3)      Insert quote!!!!

4)      Have forgiveness of yourself and others

5)      Be yourself, nobody does it better

I felt that i related to Katrina the most because i was also made fun of because of my height and i was called names and it didn’t feel good, but everyone has to find that one thing they were meant for and that gives them the confidence they need.

The next mentor was Alexandra Orlando. Alexandra has her own book called “Alexandra Orlando in Pursuit of Victory”. She came to talk to us about how we shouldn’t try and figure out who we are now, but who we want to become, and to be stronger than you actually think you are. In 2007, Alexandra was qualifying to be on the Olympic team at 15 years old for Rhythmic Gymnastics but missed but 1/10 of a point. At that point in her life she went to a dark place and took a break from gymnastics. When she was go back, finally ready and realized the love of that sport was too important she wanted to go back, but her coaches tried to tell her she did not have the right figure anymore, but she didn’t listen and continued anyways, all she told herself was to keep pushing. In 2008, Alexandra qualified for the Olympics. Then she went to school to get her business degree.

Her message was to always show your true emotions, never hold anything back, just go for it and always acknowledge the people who got you there.


The last speaker was Dr. Natalie Archer. Natalie only had some tips for life, and as much as she shared she wanted to make sure she got those points across. Education is key, you always have to keep working at it. She used a saying that she got from her son, “build your web”, so build your future. Another point was to always have advanced planning, she said it was key to success. She discussed how women are becoming the “leaders” in a way. We should take calculated business risks and we should be able to control our own destiny. Now-a-days you see a lot of women who are bringing in money which causes  a lot more roles for women and that gives us a lot more pressure. Dr. Natalie couldn’t have been clearer with this point but she wanted us to know that having children is VERY important for us women.

These four amazing women have been great people to talk to, with all the struggles in their life it was nice to know that all women are not alone. I hope to have that much confidence in what i do with my future. They were perfect example of who a great role model should be.


~~Halle Livingston MissTeenDurham-World2012

Written by: Halle Livingston
Posted On: Categories:Miss Teen Durham

One Response to Mentor Night!

  1. Rob Campbell says:

    Halle please dont forget to add links to sponsors’ websites.

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