With an impressive background of roughly 13 years in nonprofit work. She has a passion for doing work that makes a difference in the lives of teenagers, most of her emphasis on teen girls. Penelope believes that today's teens are tomorrow's leaders, which is why investing in their development is crucial. While they may receive their academic foundation at school, their everyday environment, their home life, the media and countless other things influence who they become, and ultimately the decisions they make.
Once a single mother of a teenage girl, she understands, firsthand what types of pressures teenagers face on a daily basis. She is aware that teen girls lives are full of constant difficult decisions. With the many challenges teen girls face it became clear that in order to have a personal foundation of self respect, self motivation and a sense of integrity to make positive choices, teenagers need encouragement and guidance.
After raising a daughter as a single parent and serving as volunteer at several nonprofit organizations, her commitment to her passion for empowering teen girls led her to launch AN IMAGE of ME in 2008, with a committed group of women. Penelope is a native of Alexandria, Virginia and a graduate of University of Phoenix.
These days Penelope is happily married to Julius Bates and enjoying her 4 children. In addition to her expanded family she is excited about the young ladies who will participate in her program as they too will become a part of her extended family.
Motto: One Day... (She adopted from her deceased father who believed One Day.... represented whatever you desire it to be, knowing that One Day... it will be)