How has she positively impacted women and/or girls in Chicago?
Although the Dream Academy Foundation does not specifically target girl and women, her efforts to help the community have made a huge impact on them indirectly. Her foundation has hosted both a wellness kit event, where over 500 essential workers (including nurses and teachers) received PPE and other wellness supplies. She also hosts toy drives for children in her native Bellwood neighborhood where 75 children received gifts during the holiday season. Finally, her mentoring services have impacted thousands of young adults (both boys and girls) who have become leaders and influencers in their own right.
What lessons can girls and/or other women learn from her?
Dominique has proven to be a strong and driven woman who is passionate about helping those in need. While maintaining a full time job, she started her own organization that has become somewhat of a staple in the Westside community and continues to thrive. Outside of Dream Academy Foundation, she serves as a board member for Four Point Play, an organization that uses sports to boost mind, body and spirit, and volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Chicago, the Carlton Center and the FABB Girl Foundation, among others. I believe she can be an inspiration to anyone who wants to give back. Giving back is more than volunteering for a few hours here and there. If you really love to see your community thrive, giving back will truly become a lifestyle and serious commitment. She is definitely a woman who leads by example.
About Dominique Bryant
Dominique Bryant is a Project Specialist at HCSC. Throughout her career she has been recognized for her impeccable leadership and organizational capabilities. Along with her diligence to effectively lead, she demonstrates the ability to adapt to the ever-changing demands of her progressive title. While managing her daily tasks, she was asked to Co-Chair her company’s Employee Engagement Committee. Within this role, she has coordinated participation in building playgrounds with Kaboom, food packaging events, holiday gifts drives for the at-risk youth, school supply drive, and varies community advancement projects for the last 7 years. She is always a Community Service Ambassadors at her job. In addition, she has Co-Chair a subcommittee at an Employee Resource Group for the past 3 years. I was a recipient of my company’s 2020 BCBSIL Volunteer of the Year.
While remaining an Innovator and Leader in the Corporate Sector, she has remained a Pillar in her community as well. For the last 20 years, she has been a solid advocate for her community and in her church. Her desire to demonstrate and teach giving at a level of excellence far extends her Professional Resume. From volunteering with children at the Ronald McDonald House, or passing out food and blankets to the Chicagoland and surrounding areas on many Chicago Winter nights. She has coordinated and organized various Community enhancing forces such as Coat Drives, Specialty Blanket Drives, School Supplies drives, and Toiletry drives for over thousands of people. She has volunteered at nursing homes, juvenile facilities, soup kitchens and various shelters. She has participated at packing events for Feed My Starving Children, as well as making meals at the Children’s Ronald McDonald’s House. She has taught countless classes that vary from self-esteem to finance. In high school, she even received the Presidential Service Award for completing over 100 hours of community service in a school calendar year. In college, she was awarded The Outstanding Service Leadership Award, which was awarded to students who have demonstrated leadership through their service both at the college and community level at large. There were over 1,300 nominations submitted, and she was fortunate to be a part of the 3 people who were chosen.
In addition to serving the community on the frontlines, she has dominated the role as Co-Founder and Executive Director to several nonprofits for several years. She has been the Lead Administrator covering tasks from event planning, budgeting, applying and obtaining grants, retaining sponsorship and master fundraising. She combined her love of sports and service, when she volunteered to mentor young girls between the ages of 10 to 16 for a local Girls Basketball Team. They discussed the importance of health and nutrition, while teaching them skills to advance in basketball and various sports. In 2012, she expanded her reach by co-founding a non-profit called Cover Them with Love. She seats on the board for Four Point Play, where she is the Treasurer. Four Point Play’s mission is to improve the lives of athletes by providing them with elite training as well as guiding them to a healthy, positive and productive lifestyle inside and outside of sports. She’s a Big Sister in the Big Brother Big Sister program, volunteered with Junior Achievement, and iGlow Mentoring.
Most recently, she spearheaded the creation of her own non-profit called The Dream Academy Foundation. It is an organization that is geared towards 10-18 years. They have 4 pillars of engagement. They expose youth to STEAM careers, Mental Health and Life Development, Entrepreneurship and Service. In December 2019, the organization gave away almost 200 toys to over 100 youth and families. January 2020, they kicked off their mentoring program by having a “I Have a DREAM” Vision Board Party. During this party, they also made hygiene kits for foster and homeless youth and families.
Dominique is committed to expressing a life of Servanthood, and Intentionality. She is an individual whose life and work follows the mission of Pursuing Purpose, Truth and giving compassionate service in everything she does. She has been a coach, mentor, planner, board member, activist, but most importantly a person that has extended love universally. That’s what makes her distinctively different. Her life will continue to embody truth, and raise the standard of what Advocacy looks like.
In 2020, Dream Academy Foundation has held over 20 events, impacted over 1000 people in over 15 states. We officially launched our Love On Purpose Outreach/Service Initiative which has recognized Displaced and Essential Workers, students, senior citizens, and more.