Oakdale Entrepreneur Jordan Receives ‘Inspire Her Award’

One truly never knows the direction life may take you. In the case of local business owner and an entrepreneur extraordinaire, Kendra Harris Jordan, this could not be more true.

Jordan was recently honored as a recipient of the “Inspire Her Award,” as a Woman Excel Awardee, presented by the Pretty Powerful Organization.

“I know them because I actually minister with them. We all pastor at each other’s churches and support one another,” Jordan said of the Bay Area based organization. She noted that the nomination was a complete unexpected shock.

It was through the help and coordination of her husband Lorenzo Jordan, that the organization, which is partnered with the NAACP, drove out to present her with the nomination during a church service.

Both Kendra and her husband serve as Pastors of their Oakdale based church River of Jordan Ministries.

“It was heartwarming for me, because I don’t do anything to get something back from mankind,” the recipient said of learning of the nomination, “because God told us to expect things from him.”

According to the honoree, Pretty Powerful is an organization of women inspiring other women and recognizing those whom inspire.

“Of course I cried. I tried to hold it together,” Jordan continued. “It was totally unexpected. I had no idea I would be getting this award.”

When being presented with the nomination, Jordan shared the presenter pointed out that Oakdale is not the picture that has been painted of the community. If she and her family can be in Oakdale and thrive, anybody can.

“She said that we had set a good example for all people to see that not all African Americans are the stereotype,” the business owner shared. “She said it goes both ways, African Americans are not just these people who can come tear up your city, they can contribute to your city.”

When receiving the award Jordan shared she was told she was the first African American woman to have multiple businesses in Oakdale and they wanted to acknowledge her for that. Sharing they were inspired by her doing that and that it made them feel they could go out and put their feet on soil where they might have felt discouraged too.

But it didn’t start there for the owner of several Oakdale businesses including: Geminiz Creations and varying others through KLH Enterprise LLC.

“I started an organization as a single mom on welfare in 2005,” Jordan shared. “It was called Diversified Family Services. With that organization, I and my children sacrificed Christmas for other kids and families to have Christmas.”

A small idea which initially helped five families, grew to help 500 by 2015. A feat which was fostered due to the thanks of a women’s motorcycle club Jordan started, Divaz Au Naturel.

“It was always about motivating and encouraging them,” she said of the other women by way of the motorcycle club.

“To be in the motorcycle club, the women had to do community service. So we provided community service through Diversified Family Services,” she continued, which led to the growth of the Christmas giveaway.

“That led to me being in a position of leadership for women who had children and it gave me an opportunity to lead them in the right direction,” Jordan shared, adding she did not realize she was inspiring women and men at that time, through Diversified and the motorcycle club.

By 2015, however, Jordan and her husband found themselves in a place of new circumstance. Relocating to Patterson from Oakland in search of a better life for their children, things changed drastically.

“We were victims of the home scams, where you rent a home and it really wasn’t their home,” she shared. “So we ended up homeless because of that.”

As Jordan and her family settled into their new life circumstance and calling a hotel home in the interim, the Christmas program was put by the wayside.

Contacted by an annual donor, Jordan shared their story and circumstance. As a result and unbeknownst to her, the donor paid for two additional weeks at the hotel they resided in.

“God is truly good, because even in the midst of that I struggled with if I was going to do all this again,” she confided. “I felt like I had lost my place in life. How do I go from being the person who helped everyone to being the person who needed help?”

In time the couple came to find Oakdale and a landlord who continued with the generosity they had begun to experience.

“Everything continued. It was just like it was put on hold a little bit,” she said of coming to Oakdale and launching her first business in town, Geminiz Creations.

“I’m still stuck. I’m still trying to figure out why did I get the award, because everything I do is from the heart,” she said. “It’s not to be rewarded for by man, because I believe God is always going to reward me for my works.”

And while she’s honored to be a recipient, the bigger picture for Jordan is both God and the company she keeps.

“Everyone that has poured into my life. My trials, my tribulations,” she shared, “everything that I’ve been through has gotten me to the point that I’m at now.

“It’s just hard to receive it. It’s easy for me to give it. It’s just hard to receive it.”

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