Harry and Michelle Dunn are best described as dedicated, persevering, caring, community-driven, and integrative. For over two decades, the husband-and-wife team has lived their lives as public servants because they sensed a deep calling to reach back and help a hurting generation. And that is exactly why they have sacrificed as hard as they have to open the Him by Her Foundation.
BLACK ENTERPRISE spoke with the powerhouse couple about the process of opening a school in the inner city and what people can expect from them going forward.
Tell us about your foundation.
Harry: After more than four years of extensive research, collaboration, planning, and dogged determination, my wife and I felt blessed to begin to move the HIM By HER Foundation Inc. (HBHF) programs toward operation. We both share a passion for educating youth and those marginalized, and for providing opportunities to improve the chances of success for those in the community. We believe that if you limit a person’s excuses and give them an opportunity, you are helping improve their chances for success in life.
Why did you decide to plant your school in the inner city of Indianapolis?
Harry: Both me and my wife, Michelle, were born and raised in marginalized areas in the city of Indianapolis. This is our foundation. Our bricks were laid here. We see ourselves in these young men and young women. We want the young people to know that there is more opportunity out here for them; they are more than what’s being presented to them.
Michelle: I want people to know that I am no better than them. That I am no different than them. I want this generation to be able to see themselves in me. I want them to know that with hard work, plus dedication, that success would be inevitable. Although you may fall down 1,000 times, it’s about getting back up. Get up and fight another day!
How are you planning to finish 2020 strong?
Michelle: We will be engaging more in the community. We are on track to feed several thousand more people before the year is out. We will be handing out thousands of toys for Christmas.
What can people expect from you in 2021?
Harry: For one, the wraparound services coming to life here in the school. The nursing school, anger management boxing services with a mental health component, family and youth counseling, HIV & STD testing, free dental and lead testing and so much more.
What is the motto that you live by?
Michelle: God. Family. Business
What advice do you give to someone who is letting an obstacle stop them?
Michelle: I carried a little mustard seed in my wallet. That seed represents faith. It told me that any time that I have an obstacle, that I would need to depend on God. My faith is so much stronger than any obstacle ahead of me. Faith can really move any mountain!
Dr. Jessica Mosley is a serial entrepreneur who loves teaching fellow CEO women how to show up in their truth & power. As Steward Owner of MizCEO Entrepreneurial Media Brand, Sovereign Care Home Care, Sovereign Care Medical Training Center, and Deborah’s Place for Battered Women, Jessica is busy making moves that impact her community & those connected to her.