Shouts out to the #1 Girlie Girl, Anita Barker! She is always pushing boundaries to new heights when it comes to giving back to the youth of SWLA and her phenomenal, non-profit program in Lake Charles, LA. The Founder and CEO of Girlie Girls Mentoring Inc. have worked tirelessly to promote self-love, build confidence, and empower tween and teenage girls in the community.

I'm proud to say my daughter is a Girlie Girl too! A good example of what Barker does with her mentorship is reminding her girls that education is the key to success. In fact, our recent field trip was a tour of Tulane University in New Orleans. I was extremely informative and gave her girls another opportunity to see if they think it, they can achieve it.

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Barker is leading by example. She is a community leader, entrepreneur, mentor and author. Proof that what ever you put your mind too, you can do. Her program exposes her group of young ladies to a wide variety of life lessons through the positive reinforcement of sisterhood, mentorship, emotional support, scholarship awards and so much more. It's all about embracing 'Girl Power' and teaching her Girlie Girls that they are important and worthy of all God's gifts.

Speaking of which, Anita Barker has found another way to spread her positive message. With the debut of her new book, I Am, now she can encourage Girlie Girls everywhere!

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"I Am the book is intended to uplift young ladies by encouraging them to be who God created them to be," Anita said. "In this book, several girls complete the “I am...” phrase with a character trait that describes them positively. They then express their self-love with statements that make them feel confident, loved, and empowered."

She added, "I portrayed the characters after people that I know personally." The beautiful illustrations by Rebecca Adcock, are also a reflection of the members in Barker's Girlie Girls Mentoring Inc. I Am is perfect for girls of all ages and it's available for purchase now! Buy the amazing book, I Am for the Girlie Girl in your life today or pick one up at Anita Barker's upcoming book signing event.

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It all takes place Saturday, August 20 at the Ward 3 Recreation Power Center (3110 Power Center Pkwy) from 10 am to 12 noon. As an added bonus, everyone who purchases a book will receive the I AM coloring book, featuring more therapeutic coloring for self-empowered minds. Congratulations to SWLA's #1 Girlie Girl, Anita Barker!

LOOK: Here are the biggest HBCUs in America

More than 100 historically Black colleges and universities are designated by the U.S. Department of Education, meeting the definition of a school "established prior to 1964, whose principal mission was, and is, the education of black Americans."

StudySoup compiled the 20 largest historically Black colleges and universities in the nation, based on 2021 data from the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics. Each HBCU on this list is a four-year institution, and the schools are ranked by the total student enrollment.