Meet the authors and get the stories behind their downfall and up-comings. Be inspired and learn how they came from trials to triumph and lived the life to tell about it firsthand.
Brandi Davis, born and raised in Southfield, Michigan, is an author, motivational speaker, reality tv star and prison reform activist. Davis, the daughter of a legendary street hustler and the girlfriend of a notorious drug dealer, was no novice to street life.
After her child’s father suddenly died in federal prison, she faced the challenge of maintaining the lavish lifestyle he provided. With her back up against the wall, Davis accepted an invitation to enter the drug game and became extremely successful.
Life was grand until Davis was caught red-handed with 27 kilos of freshly packaged cocaine, landing her a ten year sentence in federal prison. After serving close to a decade behind bars, Davis has decided to share her life experiences to warn others about the danger of poor choices. With her powerful voice and bona fide street credibility, she has captivated the attention of youth and adults across the nation. Exposing the naked truth and deadly consequences of street life, her heartfelt story has become an anchor used to save the lives of many of today’s troubled youth.
Brandi Davis’ struggle has fueled her with a burning passion to right her wrongs. She is now an entrepreneur while also starring in a hit reality television show, From The Bottom Up, that follows formerly incarcerated women as they rebuild their lives. Her clothing line, “Free Pretty Girls” is now available online at Freeprettygirls.com Davis is not stopping there, her journey to recreate herself is only just beginning.
Sunshine Smith-Williams graduated from college having majored in legal studies and minored in writing . Legal studies was Smith-Williams first passion and diligently she was gainfully employed from several law offices as a paralegal from 2003- 2010. Sunshine Smith-Williams is a Serial entrepreneur, philanthropist, youth mentor, motivational speaker, film producer and Author. Smith-Williams was Raised in South Jamaica Queens, New York by a single mother, who struggled to make ends meet. Growing up in multiple impoverished housing projects with dim hope, Smith-Williams utilized education as a weapon to overcome poverty, and obtained several degrees and certifications, climbing the corporate ladder to achieve success. After being laid off from her job in 2010, Smith-Williams gained the faith to start her own consultant firm "Sunny Legal Realty LLC". Through an intense journey she discovered and dethroned her flaws and increased her self-esteem. As a result she successfully opened several thriving businesses and mentored others to do the same. Making decisions was sometimes difficult for the entrepreneur. Growing up in housing projects she held on to her relationships with friends of her past. Unfortunately in 2013, her indecisiveness with who she thought was a friend, greed and lack of judgment landed her in federal prison. She is a walking testament that despite making poor choices you can recover from it. She realized her experience and incarceration in federal prison was Gods way of using her as a vessel to help the youth and others like herself who have made poor choices.
At the age of thirty-eight she is also the C.E.O of "Shared Living Residential LLC" alongside her spouse. "Shared Living Residential LLC" is a chain of homeless facilities throughout New York City that help formerly incarcerated women and men with housing, re-entry into society, financial literacy, legal referrals, online schooling, and health care. Upon release of federal prison, in 2015 Smith-Williams embraced her minor from college seriously and released her first published self help book and became a best selling author. This past year the African American Film Critic Association named her self-help book an honorable mention amongst the top 10 books of 2015. In the spring of 2015, her book she wrote in federal prison "Sunny101: The 10 Commandments Of A Boss Chick" was catalogued in the self-help section in central libraries across the world next to Bishop TD Jakes and Minister Joel Osteen. The authors writing aspired her to produce films. In 2016 Smith-Williams launched "Sunny Side-Up Productions & Films". She continues to break the glass ceiling by generating innovative ideas and executing them to fullfill her purpose.
In Spring 2017, Smith-Williams was honored for change from the Department of Education and has done motivational speaking in various states. She shares her testimony with both youth and adults across the world, inspiring them to overcome life’s difficulties. The serial entrepreneur resides in the water suburb of long island, New York with her husband/business partner and their nine year old son.
Jamila T. Davis, born and raised in Jamaica Queens, New York, is a motivational speaker, prison reform activist and the author of several books geared to empower the young and the old. She is also a co-founder of WomenOverIncarcerated.org, an advocacy group created to shed light on the lengthy sentences of non-violent, female federal offenders and rally for sentencing reform.
As a former Hip Hop Music & Professional Sports Celebrity Advisor and real estate investor, Davis is no stranger to triumphs and defeats. From a self-made millionaire at age 25, her life took a tragic twist. Today she’s known as federal prisoner #59253-053, sentenced to 12 1/2 years for bank fraud.
From behind bars, Davis embarked on an intense journey of inner healing and restoration. Documenting her findings, she created the “Voices of Consequences Enrichment Series,” which has helped to transform the lives of female offenders across the country.
Discovering her purpose while incarcerated, and encountering injustices within her own case, Jamila T. Davis developed “The High Price I Had To Pay” Book Series, creating a platform for women serving decade plus sentences for non-violent crimes to tell their stories. The success of the series led to the formation of WomenOverIncarcerated.org.
Despite her current obstacles, Davis is committed to paying her way forward and transforming lives through her literary work. From behind bars she’s making a difference!
Aisha Rochester Hall was born and raised in Roosevelt, New York. She came into this world in 1983, to a young teenage couple, Karen and Collin Rochester. Her father was better known to many as “Daddy Prince” or “Prince Collin”, a true Jamaican legend on the streets of New York. He was a young father eager to provide, and the streets of New York became his hustle grounds.
Aisha Picked up many of her father’s skills; learning early on the power of music and entrepreneurship. She would often travel with him to different venues performing rap and reggae routines. She graduated high school and attended New York Institute of Technology on a track and field scholarship. But by night, she was in New York City performing at different showcases, entertaining people with her musical skills. Her grandparents, known to most as Nana and Poppy were also heavily influential. They made sure she stayed active, well travelled and immersed in the rich history of African Americans.
By the time Aisha was in her early twenties, she’d owned several businesses. One of them being a company called Apogee Financial. She moved to Detroit and opened an office there, employing a few top notch street-hustlers. She knew that anybody who could operate a business in the street, could use those same skills in an office environment if given the chance. Her theory proved correct, as her company became very successful and soared to a value of close to ten million dollars in less than a year! She had the world at her feet.
Her life seemed perfect, until everything came crashing down. Some bad business deals in 2009 landed her in Federal prison with a sentence of more than ten years! She was only twenty five at the time. To make matters worse, her brother was tragically killed by the police just a few months later. Then, her father was murdered after being deported back to Jamaica. This devastated her, but fortunately, it didn’t break her. It only furthered her desire to become her greatest self. Holding onto the principles of her father, she decided to focus on the positive side of her incarceration. She became an author.
Aisha has penned more than six novels and ghost-writes for many from behind bars. While in prison, Aisha has put on many urban plays entertaining thousands of other women and giving them a piece of Broadway and freedom through her creativity. She is also an advocate for ending mass incarceration as well as the overly harsh sentencing for all non-violent offenders. Her urban books have caught the attention of many and she is a screen play writer, creative producer for a reality show, and on her way to becoming a best-selling author. She’s also been working on her music and plans to come home and continue to do what she loves: running businesses and hitting the stage, getting back to her hip hop and reggae roots.
Now, almost eight years into her sentence, Aisha will be home next year in 2017, ready to hit the ground running. Life had it’s ups and downs, but pressure make diamonds and she plans to shine brighter than ever before.