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Life & Work with Debonie Lewis

Today we’d like to introduce you to Debonie Lewis.

Hi Debonie, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
From a very young age, I was consumed with the entertainment industry. I remember obsessing over magazines in my adolescent years, studying the different poses models would do, keeping tabs on the fashion, researching, if you will, the techniques of the stars to understand how one would conduct themselves on set. The lingo to use, the aura to bring. I was enthralled with the “bigger than life” energy brought, but more so, called to the industry for the desire to entertain. The endless self-expression it seemed they had, inspired me to tear away the boundaries most 13 years old wouldn’t have and understand that if they could do it, so could I.

From this point, I started down my route of entertainment. From assuming lead and secondary roles in theater productions to playing the violin, being the test model to many friends, and submitting endless self-taped auditions to any casting I could find online if there was a way to entertain, I was more than likely close by.

By the time I graduated high school, I was packing up to attend college at the University of Missouri – Columbia. I was not pursuing a degree in anything entertainment-related, but quite the opposite, pharmacy. A thing about me I realized was, I am a very eclectic person. Although one thing is a dream, there are at least two more interests following closely behind. By the time I entered college, I decided I also wanted to have a thriving career. To be appreciated for more than my entertainment talent, my perceived beauty, or anything else that didn’t capture my intellect and love for school.

During college, I was able to find another part of me that could “entertain”, but in a more professional setting. I found I had a knack for engaging people from all walks of life in conversation, establishing operations and policy and an affinity for fixing our health care system. These skills coming to life during my internships for the U.S. Senate in Washington, D.C. and for the Missouri House of Representatives. Deserting my original plan of becoming a pharmacist and instead electing to go a more ambiguous route that allowed for more personal freedom, I earned a degree in Health Sciences. Soon thereafter, a Masters in Health Administration. During that time, I stepped into the role of a project manager but also locked down a local talent representation in KC under Moxie Talent. I was cast in commercials for Amazon, Planet Fitness, Enterprise and more, I created my current reality. A double life as I sometimes describe it. One in which I help businesses with their operations, getting projects from start to finish, and revolutionizing the US Health Care system in every faucet imaginable through the Whole Health Institute and another life where I’m on the road for commercial and modeling shoots, signing contracts with top agencies like MMG, and staying ready for the next audition. I’m not sure how many lives we may get, but with this one I have now, I’m determined to play out all of my dreams.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I can’t say there have not been setbacks or personal struggles along the way as I further step into my career(s), but I can’t complain about what has happened because I am extremely thankful and proud of what I have accomplished so far and where I am.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I chose others because my successes are in two categories… “employee/professional” and “artist/creative.”

As an Employee/Professional, I am a project manager. I help start-ups get on their feet by outlining strategic plans and standing up required processes. I work with the start-up A Better Rebuild. Working to build up a new supplement company to run with the big dogs. It is an ever-evolving environment, pivoting until we get the coordinates just right, yet it’s so exciting to see how we grow. I am also an employee for the Whole Health Institute and play a role in revolutionizing our US health care system by shifting from a reactive to proactive holistic approach, changing the payer system, redesigning the medical education space through Whole Health integration and developing a new medical school, and equipping everyone with the knowledge and tools to take a stronger stance in their health care journey.

As an Artist/Creative, I create images that last. I am a model and commercial actress. Where there is a camera, I am there and I am on. I have done commercials for companies such as Enterprise, Planet Fitness, Amazon, Community America, Russel Athletic, etc. I have done runway for KCFW, modeled for photographers from different parts of the country. Being in front of the camera brings me pure joy because I am creating something with the intention to bring joy to someone else. To share an emotion and express a level of vulnerability that doesn’t come from many of my day to day interactions.

Since I live in a dichotomous dream state, I don’t have one thing I am most proud of. Firstly, I’m most proud of my unrelenting dedication to what fuels me. Understanding it’s not one or the other, but both are essential parts of my being. Secondly, I am proud of following my passion project to work for the Whole Health Institute to change our health care systems in this country. Lastly, from an entertainment perspective, I’m at a place where I never thought I’d be when I was 13 flipping through magazines. Represented by MMG out of NYC, having been casted for many top named companies,.. I am so proud of the fact I can even say I have the semblance of a career in something that brings me the purest form of joy.

It’s hard for me to say what I’m known for, I wear different hats for many people, I hope all of them contain an element of positive energy, happiness and entertainment. I can say with more certainty, though, what sets me apart is my larger than life mindset of “if we want it, we can get it.” I am extremely ambitious, I think people should reach their fullest potential, and I go after everything I want, From being a self-trained nationally qualified bodybuilder to spinning up a new department in my organization, I work very hard to make sure no stone is left unturned in my work and life.

Can you talk to us a bit about the role of luck?
Luck… or having a good relationship with the Universe?? HA, I think right place right time. I think being aware of your surroundings, I think always being ready… Luck has helped me get my foot in the door, but I think I showed up to fully open it to all it could offer.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Emil Panthier Crush Model Photography Jenna Patterson Ryan McCreedy Ben McBee Kodak Photography Zrich Productions

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