Nicole Curtis has been very candid about her challenging past. The single mom worked a myriad of jobs, from Hooter's waitress to house cleaner, before entering real estate and striking it big with her hit HGTV show Rehab Addict. Today, Nicole is not only a shining success story, but she's also helping other makers use their creativity for the greater good by working with Bernzomatic, manufacturer of handheld torches, on the Find Your Fire community grants program.
"There's 135 million people in the United States that would say, 'I'm a maker.' I think that number always blows me away because we think that everyone's so hooked on technology . . . but there's still all these people out there handcrafting things," Nicole told us recently. Makers can apply to be awarded part of $38,000 in grant support. "I hope everyone applies. It's worth it!" Nicole told us.
When Nicole isn't helping fund the next generation of makers, she's dolling out sage career advice. We asked Nicole what it was like to break through in a male-dominated industry — and we weren't prepared for her answer.
"You only have to break through if you follow their game that there's actually a barrier for you to break through," she wisely stated. "I don't like it when people throw me into this cart that I'm breaking the glass ceiling, or I'm breaking the barrier. I didn't see a barrier. I was raised that girls did housework, girls did yard work. Boys did housework, boys did yard work. There was no difference."
Now that's some serious female-empowered wisdom!