Uplifting Quotes from Our Hall of Fame Empowerment Speakers

For the 20th Anniversary of the ESSENCE Festival, we're giving attendees an opportunity to unleash their power! This year, we're paying special attention to the importance of empowerement by spotlighting the best empowerment speakers to grace our stage. To get you prepared for the uplifting three-day event in New Orleans, take a look at some of their most powerful words.

Shenequa A. Golding May, 02, 2014

1 of 9 Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

“You can’t let your failures define you. You have to let your failures teach you.”

2 of 9 Denise Truscello/Getty Images

"I'm living proof that with confidence and by believing in yourself you can accomplish any goal."

3 of 9 Peter Nakhid

"If you want things to change in your life, don't just talk about it with other people talk to God about it."

4 of 9 Douglas Mason

"Spending quiet time alone gives your mind an opportunity to renew itself and create order."

5 of 9 David Paul/Bloomberg

"Take criticism seriously, but not personally. If there is truth or merit in the criticism, try to learn from it. Otherwise, let it roll right off you.”  

6 of 9 Gus Bennet

“God has invested entirely too much in you for you to be comfortable in anything less than you were created to be.”

7 of 9 Derek Blanks

"There has been nothing more impactful on my life and meaningful to me than the introduction of Christ. That, hands down, blows away every joke I've ever written."

8 of 9 Emily Umphry

"Happiness isn't a mood, it's a choice. It's a habit. It's a way of life. So be happy... I am."

9 of 9 Anthony Harvey/Getty Images