Some of the responses have been edited for clarity.
Davica V. Williams, known as Davi Speaks, is a multi-media personality, realtor and Christian spiritual advisor. She loves the culture, flair, and the interconnectedness of her Bahamian-Colombian roots.
Williams has spent her career as a plus-size model and motivational speaker and has recently released a personal memoir, “The Wonder Years: Me Myself and My Story.” She said experiencing incestuous rape at 3 years old led her on a life-long path of self-discovery.
What are three words you would use to describe yourself?
Indomitable, rare and timeless.
Tell us about your journey:
My journey started in 1981, being born as an identical twin. My birth narrative and early traumas shaped my passion for humanitarianism, philanthropy, anthropology, psychology and religion. At the age of 5, I had to stand before my rapist in court and demand justice for me and my twin sister, Demetria. Our uncle was found guilty of rape and sodomy of a minor under 10 years of age. He served 11 years in federal prison for his crimes.
Although he was in prison, I was imprisoned in my mind and body due to sexual violation. I went through body shaming because of it. The trauma and sexual violation happened at various junctions of my childhood from 9 and 12 years of age.
In my recently published memoir, “The Wonder Years: Me Myself and My Story,” I go into full disclosure of all I endured. Experiencing victim shaming from peers during my adolescent years, I was impassioned to empower all who are afraid to speak the truth and be vindicated.
Owning my story propelled my twin sister and me to platforms all around the country throughout high school tenures, two HBCU matriculations, and across interdisciplinary vocational experiences.
Additionally, I have served my local community through mentorship, civic and spiritual engagement, and advocacy for women’s’ and girls health and mental health disparities amongst the African diaspora. I’ve traveled throughout the U.S., bringing awareness about systemic scleroderma. This project is especially dear to me because it claimed the life of my twin sister. Re-authoring my life without my “wombmate” has led me to a new self-awareness journey that has been the greatest challenge to date.
What inspired you to pursue each goal?
Various dynamics have influenced my accomplishments. For starters, my faith and moral compass have always led me intrinsically. At the age of 5, I learned my voice is powerful and I cannot be limited in my thinking and in my doing. I also had to carry my family’s strong legacy of activism and advocacy for literacy and philanthropy.
How does your Caribbean heritage influence you in your everyday life?
Being a highly intellectual Afro-Latina, plus size buxom beauty is interconnected into every facet of my life. Let’s face it, visibly my skin complexion and physical features instantly subvert European standards of beauty and the esteeming of white womanhood. The strength in my spirit, command in my stride, and articulation in vernacular instantly shift the atmosphere. I tilt the room from the corporate boardrooms, pulpit to social spaces. To thine own self I always stay true is a guiding mantra of mines.
What is your definition of success?
Great question. What is my definition of success? For me, success cannot be limited by tangible attainments such as by degrees, accolades, material wealth, or social status. Instead, success is all-encompassing. It is the materialization of one’s relentless drive to accomplish goals through harnessing discipline to work the work no matter.