Meet MDI Dream Team Mentor Bridget M. Walker Gillette

MDI: Tells us about yourself.

BG: I was born and raised in Detroit Michigan as the eldest of three and the only girl. I am a “Woman In Progress”! I am a Human Resources Professional having worked in the field for over 20 years.  I attended Wayne State University in Detroit MI and studied Communications and Dance. I transferred to Howard University in Washington, DC where I studied Business Management and Dance/Fine Arts. 

MDI: What is your definition of success?

BG: I believe success means different things to different people at different times of their lives. Today, I define success as developing, growing and moving forward in “The Whatever” makes “YOU” truly happy and gives you Joy!

MDI: What top five values do I feel most compelled to instill in my children?

BG: The five values are:


Relationship of Love with God

Importance of Managing Money

Life Survival Skills

Importance of Knowing When and How to Say “No”

MDI: Who in your life would you say has contributed to your level of self-esteem and or self-confidence?  

BG: It has not necessarily been a particular person as much as it has been life-experiences. Although my closest lifetime friends have supported me throughout my journey it has been my relationship with God and my belief in “Self” that has given me a strong and healthy foundation of confidence. Let me add, my father once told me ” I believe in you Britt and whatever you face in life, I know that you can handle it.” Sometimes, I am reminded of the moment he spoke those words!

MDI: If you could lead a workshop on empowering girls, what ideas or suggestions would you recommend to moms to help empower their daughters?

BG: For Moms, start with self-reflection through self-evaluation!  Realize that daughters are going to watch what you DO more than they are going to listen to what you SAY, therefore it is important to MODEL/LIVE behavior that you are trying to teach.  This requires self-sacrifice and selflessness for moms.  “Raising Daughters” is an act of EMPOWERMENT in and of itself!

MDI: What is the most effective way to teach daughters how to take responsibility for their decisions and actions?

BG: NOT AN EASY TASK!  I am the Daughter of a Mom who was not taught to share or to have REAL conversations around REAL issues when I was younger. As a result, I promised myself that if I had children I would talk to them about everything until they were sick of hearing me! And then after that, I would talk to them some more.  I starting developing relationships with my daughters when they began to speak. Yes! That young. With the age appropriate conversations it was imperative that I included my life experiences (decisions, actions – accountability, responsibility) and as well those of family, friends and others.  Having REAL relevant discussions opened up the world of accountability conversations. This was the segway to effectively teaching responsibility to my ladies.  I realized that waiting until they were teenagers to teach them how to grapple with and embrace their own decisions was unfair, too late and not an option.  Learning and failing and learning and succeeding during the experiences of their formative years was the key because this laid the foundation for their decision-making process, early.  I also had to include valued levels of rewards and consequences based on their decisions and actions.  It was breathtaking for me at times but then I remembered that it was my responsibility to do my very best to raise my daughters.  I decided that I wanted no regrets, put my big girl panties on and spoke life into them. This was a regularly applied practice in our household throughout their lives.  Now, as college students, they have an understanding through their own experiences, however limited that it is their responsibility to be accountable for both their decision making and actions which should be weighed and thought out with the end result in mind!  I bless God that they still call me for guidance.  

MDI: What words of advice would you give the next generation of women?  

BG: GLEAN, GLEAN, GLEAN!  Take from those of us who came before you to: Find your Path, Find your Strength, Find your Courage, Find your Voice and then Share them ALL!  There is no need to make the same mistakes we made. Learn from us. Hear our stories. Take what you need from them and spread the rest! Stand on our shoulders to reach your goals, reach your dreams and to climb beyond all that we could see or imagine.  Know, that we are here for you to help you get to your places of unimaginable and unprecedented successes! Remember as you have taken, GIVE BACK!  Believe, With GOD All things Are Possible!!!

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