In celebration of Women’s History Month, Nolij would like to acknowledge and honor the extraordinary women who keep our company growing year after year. Leo Faal, a financial analyst, exemplifies every woman who does not let her circumstances deter her from fulfilling her ambitions and following her dreams. Thank you Leo for making the brave journey from The Gambia and contributing to the success of Nolij through your skills, dedication and energy.
“I arrived in New York City in 1990 from the small country of The Gambia in West Africa when I was 17 years old. My ideas of the United States were shaped by movies that celebrated America as a land of possibility and I dreamed of moving here one day to better my life. As a small country, Gambia did not offer many advanced educational or career opportunities after high school. I am the youngest of seven children and lost my father when I was four years old. It had been drilled into me by my hardworking mother that education is the key to a successful life. My cultural education began in New York City, where I found everything to be big, exciting, and a little scary—especially the busy highways! Within months of moving to the United States, I was very fortunate to find a wonderful family who gave me friendship, a home, and a college education. I lived with my new adopted family for 12 years before getting married. After I got married, I became a stay-at-home mother to my two children for 16 years. Although I previously held retail sales positions at stores like Nordstrom, Nolij helped launch my career in finance. I began as an adult intern in the finance department and then transitioned to a full-time financial analyst. As a mature woman entering the job market for the first time, Nolij, a woman-owned company, gave me an extraordinary opportunity to grow professionally. Nolij supports and understands women’s life circumstances and the choices we make because of our families. As my teen daughter now starts her educational journey as a Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholar, I echo my mother’s words to her often—’education is the key to the whole world and it’s never too late to make your dreams a reality.’ ”