We had the good fortune of connecting with Catherine McNeil and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Catherine, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
My roots are southside of Chicago, specifically the Roseland Community; I was born in Roseland Community Hospital, attended Roseland Christian School until 3rd grade and Pullman Church. My mom and I moved about every 2 years, I’ve lived on the east side, north side and north west side of the city; I attended public and private school. Today, I am an advocate for the holistic career development of single (unmarried parents). I got pregnant with my oldest daughter at 19, my sophomore year of college, and was forced to choose between continuing my education and keeping my child. 21 years later, I have one radio show and podcast, two degrees, two businesses, three children and have written five parenting related short read books. Having been raised in a single parent home, been a single parent and still managed to become successful, it’s my reasonable service to help others figure it out as well. There’s this belief that single parenthood is where dreams come to die, I am a living witness that it’s just not true.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
CHBM Services LLC is a holistic career an employee development consultancy, it’s comprised of the dissolved CHBM Services Development Programming L3C and a Not-for-Profit Organization entitled Disruptive INC! Through this entity, I have authored five published parenting related literary works (available on Amazon), host the Let’s Chat! w/ASKCat Radio Show bi-weekly on FluentRadio, sell apparel and provide career development workshops via the newly launched CHBM Services University.
This is a truly a labor of love.
I am Industrial-Organizational Psychologist by trade and sit in the Human Resources space for a living. I see the hurdles and barriers that people of color face while attempting to obtain gainful employment and I try to help. I started writing resumes while off on maternity leave from a previous employer. The writing was on the wall that my layoff was coming and I tried to get ahead of the loss of income. Over the years, I tried a few things, failed A LOT and ultimately pivoted into what I am extremely proud of today. Nothing about Entreneurship is easy but it’s worth it and possible if you remember your WHY!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Chicago is the SUGAR HONEY ICED TEA!!!!! I love my city and although I now live in the western suburbs outside of the county limits, I often visit as if I am vacationing! Our skyline, downtown Chicago, is second to none and of course the food….OMG, the food!! So, if I had to plan a week long trip for my BFF, we’d visit some hood favorites for good food – 1. Harold’s Chicken Shack, we’d have to go on 103rd and Halsted now because the BEST in the city (87th/Dan Ryan) is closed. 2. Uncle Remus, yes chicken AGAIN but this time on Madison and Central. There’s a rivalry between the south and west sides of Chicago that these two chicken shacks lead. We’d give up on food for a bit and do some traditional site seeing, visit the bean in Millennium Park, the sky deck at Willis (forever the Sears Tower to us) Tower and shop on the Magnificent Mile. I’m not a night life person but I am connected to one of the hottest promoters in the Chi, DonSki of DonSKi Entertainment so figuring out where to go after 10p is simple. We’d have to visit Woodfield Mall, it’s the 2nd largest mall in the country next to Mall of America and every store plus restaurant imaginable is on this property. I’m a seafood lover so we could then grab dinner at Shaw’s. Next is Oakbrook Mall, all of these shopping areas have different cultures and provide different experiences. They’re all also in different areas surrounding Chicago. Similar to Woodfield, every store and restaurant is there so we’d do dinner at Pappadeaux!!! Swamp Thang me, please!!!!! It’s so much to do in the city, from museums to the pier, biking, lake front strolls and summertime festivals, we would figure it out. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d like to dedicate my success to Natalie Carpenter (aunt/mentor and my three children; the collective consistently makes me a better person.
Other: CHBM Services University https://chbm-services-llc.teachable.com/