Updated: Mar 11, 2020
By Courtney Roberts
Kimberly Mathis came and spoke to the girls of Nacogdoches High School Feb. 21 about growth, self-confidence, and prosperity. In her presentation, Mathis touched on the importance of planting your seeds and reaching your full potential. Allowing every girl in the room to come to a realization of their own worth and capability, Kimberly also touched on the act of transformation and healing. In her case, she was born into a home with a drug abusing mother and many other sad circumstances. As a result, throughout her adolescence she faced many hardships. Despite these hardships, Kimberly Mathis found a way to prosper. Not allowing herself to fall victim to her circumstances, she overcame many obstacles that might have tried to stand in her way, which ultimately led her to where she is now. Shortly after her groundbreaking speech, Kimberly was able to give me a more in-depth look into who she was and what message she wanted to convey to young women and girls.
A Conversation with Kimberly Mathis
How did you come up with the concept of the book? Was it an emotional process?
“I cried my way through the whole writing process, because it was therapeutic. It is how I reached healing, and got a hold of my freedom. As for the title, The “DOPE GIRL” concept actually has a two-way meaning. I’m a dope girl in the sense that I was literally born addicted to drugs because of my Mom’s use, but it also means that I transformed into a life worth living. Since I was born a “dope girl” it is my job to help people live a life that they can be addicted to.”
How have your past experiences shaped who you are today?
“My mom’s choices taught me what not to do. The lifestyle she took on led to me knowing I had to do something positive with my life. As human beings, we conform or we transform. My goal was to not fall victim to my circumstances and transform into something greater.”
What keeps you going?
“My faith in Christ and knowing we all have a bigger purpose. Also, knowing that what we go through is not just for us, it’s for others to heal from our scars. Everything that we go through is God allowing us to impart a part of ourselves, so that other people can heal from our wounds.”
What is your ultimate goal?
“Getting my Master’s degree in Creative Writing and by the time I do, I want to have published three books. I also want to continue touring the country and pouring into the lives of other women.”
As a black woman, what is something you want other black women to know?
“I want them to keep going and never give up. We are gifted and talented and we are broken and bruised, but we have stories to tell. Some of the best storytellers I know are black women, because of our unique experiences in the culture and climate we live in. Stay strong to who you are, because our burdens are not in vain.”
What message do you want to get to the young girls?
“Live your truth and do it (even when you are) afraid. We all have circumstances that stifle our progress in some way. Whatever it is that your heart desires or tells you to do in any circumstances, do it afraid.”
What quote or affirmation do you live by?
“Live your truth and do it afraid!”
Kimberly Mathis is a native of Dallas, Texas and a 1996 honors graduate of Skyline High School. After graduation she went on to attend Texas A&M University-Commerce on a full academic scholarship awarded through the prestigious Roger Alsabrook Foundation. At Texas A&M-Commerce, she was a frequent affiliate of the Dean’s List and a member of the Lions co-ed cheer squad. In 1998 she became a proud member of the prominent Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, incorporated and earned 3rd place honors for Outstanding Undergraduate Chapter President in the South Central Region. Kim graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration in the Spring of 2000. Immediately following she entered the workforce as a Research Analyst for Electronic Data Systems (EDS) in Plano, Texas and served as assistant Marketing Director for the COMDEX Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada in 2001. Pulling on her corporate experience and business education, she became a member of the Women of Influence, Incorporated Conference Executive Board and Sponsorship Committee Chairman. Later in 2003, she would launch her entrepreneurial passions and become a franchisee co-owner of Wings-To-Go. In 2006 she earned a Texas Realtors License before taking a position as an income tax professional at Income Tax Specialists in Dallas, Texas.
Kim has been a registered preparer with the Internal Revenue Service since 2006 and currently owns and operates her own income tax service, The Tax Lady. She also serves as Vice President of the Kevin Mathis Foundation, a nonprofit charity founded in 2004 that focuses on youth empowerment, building stronger communities and providing support for families affected by drug addiction. She lives in Colleyville, and is married to her college sweetheart and former NFL defensive back, Kevin Mathis. They are the proud parents of three children, Kennedy, Kaleb and Kole. Recently in May of 2019, she released her first book “Dope Girl”. In this book, she talks about her mother’s addiction to drugs, the effect it had on her, and the long journey towards triumph and healing.