Kenesha Traynham-Cooper, on her way to the top
AMBER TAFARI LARAQUE Special to the AmNews | 3/18/2013, 10:53 a.m.
Traynham-Cooper believes in speaking her dreams into existence and does not believe that anything is out of reach. She does not just want a nice house or even a mansion. She wants the castle. "I will be living on my own island in five more years. You have to have big aspirations. If you have a dream and you can accomplish it by yourself, then it's not big enough."
Having grown up with her mother in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, Traynham-Cooper credits her family as being the foundation she needed to grow. During her single mother's battle with sickle-cell disease, her grandmother Bessie helped raise her. "I get a lot of my strength from her," Traynham-Cooper said. And though her mother was a single mother, her father, Kenneth Cooper, was always there. "My father was in my life, he has never left me," she said.
The church is also family to Traynham-Cooper. She travels from Brooklyn to Queens weekly to attend church at Rose of Sharon Baptist Church and credits leaders Bishop Martin K. Watson and Pastor Gail Watson as sources of inspiration as well. "If I was not there, I don't know how life would be," she said.
On the top of her to-do list is to get funding for the foundation she started, the Sharon and Stephen Traynham Creative Arts Fund for Sickle-Cell Disease, under the Sickle Cell/Thalassemia Patient's Network. Aiding people through honoring her late mother and uncle, who also passed away from the disease, is what she works hard to do. "I absolutely love helping people," she said.
Through hard work and faith, Traynham-Cooper only sees one direction, and that's up. Her plan is to expand her business and to take on other projects that she is interested in, including shoe design. Whatever it is, Traynham-Cooper plans to work hard doing it. Before she leaves the house for the day, her daughter asks her where she's going, and she responds, "I have to go get your castle."