Neomia Banks a Great Example and Inspiration

Neomia Banks a Great Example and Inspiration

By Jennifer Cowick

 

 

 

Neomia Banks was born and raised in Goree, Texas where she worked in the fields and on the farm. She moved to Abilene in 1968, married, and had two daughters. She began her business as a State Farm Insurance Agent in 1984. When asked about the struggles or challenges of building a successful business for herself as an African-American woman, she took no extra credit.“Well, there are going to be challenges no matter who you are; no matter if you are a man, woman, African-American or not. If you have a dream or a goal, you have to just go for it and know that there are going to be challenges and obstacles regardless.” [[more]] But as we continued to talk, it became clear that she is a great example and inspiration especially for women. She was able to raise two children and when the opportunity presented itself to be a representative and run her own office for State Farm; she seized the opportunity and became the first black female State Farm Agent in the state of Texas. In addition to her State Farm duties, Neomia has served on as many as 22 different community organizations and boards. She has been able to do that by prioritizing what is most important. “You must know your priorities and always be willing to choose and decide which things, in any given situation, take precedent over other things, because I don’t think there is any such thing as a Super Woman, as they used to say, but we do super things.” Despite her modesty, she did share that she understood that women and women of color do have to work harder and break through some old glass ceilings that are still in place just to earn as much as their white male counterparts. She emphasized again the importance of priorities, knowing what they are, and sticking to them. As well as not allowing yourself to be taken advantage of due to your willingness to work hard.“You must know how and when to say no. Know your own limits, and take the time for self care. Because if you allow yourself to get burned out; who is going to take care of the family and the business and all of the things that you do?” As the interview came to a close Ms. Banks reflected that Abilene was and still is a great place to have a business and raise a family.“We as a people and a community have come a long way as far as how we treat one another and equality within the system, but we still have a ways to go. I personally, have no regrets in any of the choices I’ve made. I think the key is love and balance.”