A motivational speaker, entrepreneur, published author and founder of Bakersfield Black, Arleana Waller is a phenomenal woman with many talents and goals. Born and raised in Bakersfield, Calif. Waller has decided to make a positive difference in her hometown. Having a passion for those in her community and wanting them to fulfill their lives to the fullest potential, Waller set out on a mission.
“Many titles with one intentional goal. One intentional goal that would empower people to be their very best,” says Waller.
While living in Texas, Waller produced a television show called “Girls do Talk.” The talk show featured all African American women hosts that let women talk about current topics and interview celebrities. Through the show, Waller noticed that she did well with the production of television, but never wanted to be in the front of the camera. She was the writer, producer and marketer of the show. She also did a lot of red carpet work with her partner D210TV, the network that carried her show. Once again, Waller had the passion to help people to the best of their abilities so she did what she could behind the camera.
Waller obtained her entrepreneur mindset when she was growing up. Her father was a local entrepreneur in Bakersfield with his development company, Willie J Frink and Sons. Being around him, Waller realized that she wanted to be her own boss and develop opportunities for other people.
“Working at City Financial, I tried to set my own rules. Like I will be at work around 8:30ish, so if I was there before 9am, then I thought I was okay, but I realized I couldn’t do that in the corporate America,” stated Waller.
Waller came back to Bakersfield in 2013 because her husband received a job as the director of operations with the CSUB Men’s basketball team. Upon her coming back she noticed that there wasn’t much support and positivity in the black community in town amongst each other. She felt appalled and immediately wanted to make a change. She tried to reach the black community in the ways that she knew they would connect, through social media and technology. She started Bakersfield Black, a website that connects black consumers with black businesses. Also she uses the site to present the readers and users with positive stories and positive images.
“I met Arleana through ‘Bakersfield Black’ and from our first contact, I was impressed with how she related with me. We both believe that America can do better when it comes to racial equality and the incommensurate statistics seem to prove us out,” says Bakersfield Black consumer, Glenn Porter.
Waller says that her goal with Bakersfield Black is to empower black people to focus and share positive stories and images with each other.
Not only does Waller work on inspiring others online, but she is also a published author. She has written three books. All the books empower women to reach their fullest potential. Her book called “369 Things a Woman Must Enjoy Before She Dies” is based on women putting themselves first on the list and how they need to check off experiences that they’ve always wanted to do.
“She is my agent. I say Arleana, I am thinking about doing this and she tells me how to get it done. She is my sister friend that helps me excel and never struggle,” says close friend, Robin Peppers-Hunt.
Waller has also worked with Farmers Insurance Agent, Diane Williams. Waller educated her on personal branding and social media. Williams’ first year, she received the Rookie of the Year while giving credit to Waller for being part of the startup team. Waller also speaks at CSUB about the responsibility of personal branding as well as mentoring young ladies and women.
Waller already has major accomplishments in the community while receiving awards for her impact. She was the first black woman to serve on the Roadrunner Scholarship board in its 45 years of history as well as receiving the first Diversity award ever given. She was also asked to serve on the Bakersfield Women’s Conference board in its 27th year. To be asked to serve, one must have served on many committees beforehand and the positions on the board are held for several years.
“Arleana is a leader in the Central Valley and beyond. She is an accomplished author, and sought out speaker. Her reach to help and empower others is getting greater day by day,” says Bakersfield Black member, Ed Clark.
Waller has just begun what may become a great change in this community.