Episode 10: Interview with a Former Corrections Officer Turned Entrepreneur
Our special guest for today's episode, Yolanda Copeland, is a South Florida native who relocated to North Florida to retire after completing a highly decorated and successful almost three decades in the criminal justice system. Yolanda personifies an atypical retiree due to the fact that she's seemingly busier following retirement than she ever was during her working years as a correctional officer. Yolanda is the CEO of multiple businesses, involved in real estate acquisition/rehabilitation, heavily involved in the local non-profit sector, a criminal justice reform consultant, a rights restoration advocate, recently moved her parents from Miami to Jacksonville to look after them, has a new grandson in Central Florida that she travels to see once a week and is a popular figure of the Springfield neighborhood's bourgeoning social scene.
In the episode Yolanda explained that she was very sheltered growing up and considered herself "Mildly Qualified" due to the fact that her parents like most Black parents spent more time protecting and providing than teaching her the skills essential for an efficacious life of adulting. Because of that she believes she was ill equipped when it came to rearing her own child as a single mother. Now as she basks in her infinite wisdom gained through essential experience she will ensure that her grandson isn't a victim of this culturally ingrained generational pattern. Yolanda also discussed her fascinating career as a correctional officer, how the institution affects adulting and to her dismay the lack of input law enforcement specialists have in shaping prominent legislation affecting the Black and Brown populations.
Yolanda admits that though she doesn't regret her career choice because it has provided a relatively stable, comfortable life for herself and her family if she would her been pushed by her parents to craft a bold agenda that advanced her God granted gifts her life would look remarkably different than it does today. Yolanda's episode birthed an enlightening discussion on the importance of having an agenda for your life. The Mildly Qualified family encourages you to check it out because we promise that your life will be all the better for it!