Hottest Photo Of The Month (HPOTM) Winners 2016
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Dr (Mrs) Nkoli Ezenwa, California
December 01, 2016
Happy New Month everyone! It's December, the last month of 2016! December is known as the magical month because it is the Friday of the months. As the last month of the year, it brings light, snow and feast. All to remind us to plan our New Year's resolutions, finish off with what we started and look forward to our wishes coming to pass.
As we prepare for 2017, we would like to delight you with someone special and unique who has done well for herself, her family and eveyone around her. She is Dr (Mrs) Nkoli Ezenwa of Canyon Country, California. She is from Enugwukwu of Anambra State, Nigeria and a dedicated Christian with All Christian Practical Praying Band. In all her endeavors, she holds God higher than anything else in this life.
In terms of career, she has been in the profession of Nursing for about 15 years and has attained so many degrees and certifications in the medical field namely:
- Doctor of Nursing Practice as an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
- Masters in Nurse Administration,
- CCRN (Critical Care Certified Registered Nurse),
- PCCN (Progressive Care Certified Nurse),
- SCRN (Stroke Certified Nurse) and
- PHN (Public Health Nurse)
Before relocating to the US, Dr (Mrs) Ezenwa completed part of her studies as a Microbiologist from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Anambra State. This gorgeous educationist is married to a very supportive handsome man with whom she has two cute boys and two lovely girls.
As a role model, we asked Dr (Mrs) Ezenwa how she would define beauty and what advice she would love to share with young women and men who are trying to achieve their dreams in life. Her response was, "I define beauty as a gift from God who gives liberally to whoever that He wills. My advice to the world is to remain patient but persistent in all pursuit, not neglecting God."
She is proudly Igbo and she speaks, read, and write in Igbo and English. "I
enjoy reading and utilizing evidence to improve myself and career. I also enjoy running to stay healthy," she added.
As you can see in the photo, Dr (Mrs) Ezenwa has one of the most gorgeous grins. Who would think this woman has four kids? How did she do it? Marriage, kids school and career, yet she remains fit and clam whenever you meet her. We know Black and White outfits always give that WOW factor. It's is also a woman's wardrobe essenstials. However, when a lady selects these combination of colors for an African attire, she does have plans to make a statement. So, this doctor has just made that grand statement in her photo and we are loving it!
Our beautiful star of the month is also a part -time Nursing Instructor here in California. According to her, this is something she enjoys doing and she has seen many of her students excel in their mission to help others.
We are honored to have you as our star of the month. We hope a lot of people will get inspired by your story and recognize that "nothing worth having comes easy."
Queen Gideon of Los Angeles, California
November 01, 2016
The year has almost ended with November being the last month of autumn. The good news is, this is the beginning of adventure for many of us and on that note, we would like to introduce to you Queen Gideon from Imo State, Nigeria. As our November star of the month, she has an interesting story to share with us. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California where she acquired her college education - she attended attended Pepperdine University earned her undergrad's degree and MBA in Chemical Engineering.
Queen is very passionate about women’s issues - an activist for women's education- and Nigeria. Everyone deserves knowledge to grow and expand their scope regardless of their sex, race, disability, etc. She strongly believes that corporations can be profitably and also good stewards of the environment. A belief that drives her zeal for her work as an Environmental Engineer at a metal forging facility where they manufacture parts for private, government and commercial clients in the aerospace industry.
Her current and previous projects are as bright as her faith. Keen on preserving her culture (the Igbo culture), she is the owner/creative director of Abebie’s. A series designed to teach children how to speak the Igbo language. The objective is to instill pride in the next generation and preserve the Igbo language and culture. The first book “Onu Ogugu” is available on Amazon in 5 countries. You can also check this beautiful educational project at www.abebies.com
"I am on the board of the Elly Eleanor Foundation. We are a non-profit organization committed to seeing that every child receives a quality education. We provide 100% scholarship to children in South Eastern Nigeria. We currently provide full tuition for 5 children. Our kids attend private schools. Our belief is that Every Child Matters. Check us out on www.ellyeleanor.org to follow more of our work," she said to shed more light on her mind-blowing projects.
Besides the obvious fact that queen works very hard, she also takes out time to play hard. Some how she is able to create that balance. She loves traveling, she is a huge fan of Nigerian /African music. "I currently have Pana by Tekno on heavy rotation," she said.
This political enthusiasts, who has guilty pleasures in Reality TV, sees herself working on her start-ups and Elly Eleanor. She also promises to play her part in making Nigeria a better place for the next generation. She speaks English and the Igbo language fluently. Her sense of style is simple and chic. "The more natural you look, the more beautiful you become. Always keep a smile on your face, give your very best and the universe will smile back at you," she said.
We are 100% behind you Queen. Reach for the stars!
Nche Ezenagu of Lagos, Nigeria
October 01, 2016
Dear October, we are going to make you awesome with our charming star of the month, Nche Ezenagu. Born and bred in Lagos, Nigeria in the late 70s to a noble family from Akwa, Anambra State, Ezenagu has done very well for herself and for those around her.
Ezenagu who epitomizes feminine beauty and glamour was raised in a very strong Christian background where education was greatly appreciated as the passport to the future. Determined to elevate herself and make her family proud, she made sure she excelled in every aspect of her life including her studies. A decision that paid off at a very young, earning her admission to - one of the most respectable Universities in Nigeria - Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife where she studied Computer Science.
She is married to the love of her life Chukwuma Ezenagu who also hails from Akwa in Anambra State and they have four amazing children (2 boys and 2 girls) together. Besides taking care of her family, she sees herself as a motivational speaker and she loves to engage in motivational activities .
"Words are very powerful. You will be amaze how speaking the truth and making people believe in themselves can conquer any form of negativity in their minds," she said.
Speaking life into the career and aspirations of people is so important to her, she hopes to travel around the globe impacting the world with words of enlightenment, kindness, sharing success stories and telling the truth that failure is only when you stop trying.
She also enjoys volunteering, reading, listening to music, watching movies, meeting new people and sharing ideas.
In the photo above, she is wearing a Nigerian traditional attire with a natural makeup. Her style is 'keeping it' simple, classy and warm with colors that enhances her skion tone. When it comes to dressing, she takes her time because it has to fit her self-image and personality. If it's not going to exude her confidence but rather distract her audience, it's a complete 'No, No.'
True talk! Why look dramatic and at the end of the day your physical appearance gets all the attention to a point where no one cares about who you truly are or what you have to say?
Thanks for being our star of the month Nche Ezenagu. We look forward to following you on your journey as you contribute in making the world a better place.
Lara Jinadu of New York
September 01, 2016
September days are here and of course we have a new star of the month. Guess who? It's our Lara Jinadu all the way from New York, The City of Dreams.
Jinadu is a Nigerian American and the CEO of Diffuxion Global Resources Ltd (DGR). She works very hard but that does not stop her from making some time out to pleasure. She always says "in anything you do, there should be an element of fun in it." Thus, the company’s motto “Fun is our motto”.
She has been far and wide from education, to social events / fashion and beauty/entertainment. She is the Chief strategist for the African Development Institute - a think tank organization based in New York which aims at improving African’s image abroad.
She is also a graduate student and coordinator of mentoring programs at The City University of New York, CSI. Her policy advocacy interests includes Gender equality and the empowerment of women; resources for students with special educational needs; and the institutionalization of pan-Africanism. Simply put, she loves organizing both Education seminars/conferences and Social events.
Her past work experience in the United States, Nigeria and South Africa includes co-planned events such as weddings, birthday celebrations, graduation ceremonies, trips, as well as seminars. Recently, she was the chair person at the Harvard club, where "Contending issues in Contemporary Africa” was discussed by notable panels.
Then the most recent one, a co-planned vacation trip to Las Vegas with a group of stunning ladies, which started last year during an inclusive 50th birthday celebration.
Back in Lara's College years in Nigeria, she used to be one of the most sort after high fashion models. Her success in the industry opened many doors for her to choose from. Now a wife and wise mother, she chose to remain in that noble path while contributing positively to the society.
We selected the photo below because it is simply Lara aka Lara Croft -as fondly called by closed friends. No matter how busy or difficult the day is, the soft spoken beauty never fail to impress us with her elegance.
Keep doing what you do Lara! We are with you all the way!!!!
Thelma Don Gutierrez of Los Angeles, California
August 01, 2016
Thelma Don Gutierrez is a mother of 3, who lives in Los Angeles, California.
She has been described as a News Gypsy, because over a 25 year-long career, she has worked for PBS, ABC, NBC and CBS affiliates, often moving every two years. The last 12 years were spent as a Correspondent for CNN, based in Los Angeles.
During her time as a journalist, she traveled extensively throughout the US, Mexico, Central America and Canada covering breaking news, the military and social justice issues. Oftentimes, the call from CNN would come at a moment’s notice and she’d have to rush to the airport to travel for a story. She kept a passport in her purse and a bag packed, “just in case.” It wasn’t easy to balance a busy career and a family, but she credits her husband, Bahram, a Microsoft IT Architect for his support. She says, “I couldn’t have done it without him. Most of the time I didn’t know when I was coming home, but he was always supportive.”
Thelma has met many interesting people along the way including, NFL star, Nnamdi Asomugha, legendary musician, Ringo Starr, former Laker, Metta World Peace, and Barak Obama. She says when she interviewed Obama as a young Senator, she knew he would become President! However, the people who inspired her the most were everyday people struggling to get by, those who have been exploited and marginalized by society. Thelma believes everyone deserves a voice, and has won journalism awards for stories on human trafficking, immigration and science and medicine.
She retired from CNN three years ago to spend more time with her children, and to work on her “bucket list,” which includes documentary work. She’s currently pursuing a graduate degree in Social Entrepreneurship and Change from Pepperdine University and she’s helping NGO’s with content creation and messaging.
Most recently, Thelma has traveled to Vietnam with Project Vietnam to follow the work of U.S. doctors, and she is currently in Thailand documenting the work of the Thai CDC who work with victims of human trafficking. When she returns, it’s back to being a mom! Until the next assignment…
When asked for a personal photo, she asked us to choose from a couple of photos because she didn't really know if we wanted a professional shot or an everyday kind of feel. So, we chose this particular headshot - above- which captures her true personality and her beautiful facial structures. When you are beautiful on the inside, that beauty is all people see and feel. Thelma's style of fashion is always simple and sophisticated.
She is Chinese and Mexican. She speaks English language and Spanish fluently.
Onwurah Winifred of Anambra, Nigeria
July 01, 2016
Happy new month all! Thank God we all made it into the second half of the year. July is a special month because it's not only very summer; but also a period that everyone wants to look their very best. With this bright energy in the air, we would like to introduce Onwurah Winifred as the our July star of the month.
Onwurah Winifred is one of the most esteemed women from Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria. She currently resides in Nnewi, Anambra State with her family. Her desire to work with people and improve their health led her into the Medical field. She works as an Assistant Director of Medical Laboratory Services at The Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital in Nnewi.
Every woman is beautiful but an intellectual woman like Onwurah Winifred go an extra mile in changing the world for the better.
Check out our photo of the month. It's as bright as the sun. Yellow in must countries represents good luck and Onwurah has been a blessing to mankind. This is the reason why she always has a big smile on her face. She loves the path she has chosen to follow and she hopes to do more..
Beside spending quality time with her family, doing charity work and traveling are some of the things she finds rewarding and exciting. In the future, "I hope to be in the UK spending my retirement there," she said.
She speaks the English and Igbo language.
Steph Sidonjeje of The United Kingdom
June 01, 2016
Goodbye May and welcome June!!! We have a new star of the month! All the way from the United Kingdom, Steph EOM also known as Steph Sidonjeje is one lady you need to read about. This classy woman who leads a quiet life and currently residing in the british countryside with her family, is of Nigerian origin.
Steph holds a Law Degree from a University in the United Kingdom. Her excellent performance at the school, earned her an Award for the Best Dissertation in Law. As a strong believer that "Education is the only weapon to change the world," she is always hungry for education. She also studied Color Psychology 'color effects' in London and dabbles into courses at the Oxford University.
For those of you who don't know much about Steph Sidonjeje, her signature is her poise and the confidence she exudes. She is a traveller and explorer at heart, a culture lover and foodie. This sound Lawyer also fondly described as an idea buff - she enjoys the initiation, execution and implementation processes of various ideas. She is an avid observer with a great eye for detail. A private brand strategist and also the founder and CEO of two businesses: A lifestyle Business called EKA and Viebenie a Fashion brand for children. Other things she loves includes: music, dance, discovering and exploring new things from gadgets, nature, foods to different cultures.
When asked about her expectations from the future, she replied "I love exploring and discovering. I derive a buzz from knowledge. I hope my future will be full of learning new things, opening new doors for more positive opportunities. Business aside, I hope to spend more time with my family, specially my grand parents and engage more in charity work."
One of Steph's strong attributes is her not only her strong personality, but also her poise and confidence. Always calm, cool and collected, what you see in this photo is what you get. Her sense of style is mind-blowing. She knows how to make her outfits compliment her natural surroundings. She chose to wear a white long shirt-dress instead of black that tends to absorbs heat. Do you know wearing white at the beach or on a boat ride is so beautiful and more comfortable? It also blends well with the sea and the breezy atmosphere.
Steph's mind is very elevated, she has no time for nonsense. When is comes to counseling, the lady is that friend you can count on anytime. She speaks the following Languages: English, Ika, Yoruba (not very fluently), Greek and German languge.
Steph we wish you and your entire family all the best in your endeavors! Thanks for being our Star for this month of June.
Oliseh Jen Nneka
May 01, 2016
Happy new month to you all!!! New month, new hope and a new face for Mon's Pick star of the month. Amazing Olise Jen Nneka, is our star of May. Nneka who is currently living in Lagos, is igbo by tribe, a native of Njikoka Local Government area of Anambra State, Nigeria.
Her passion for children is the reason why she works as a Therapist for children with Autism. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing impressive progress in a child intellectual and developmental abilities. She derives a lot of pleasure working with them, teaching language skills and play skills to enable them interact better in the society.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are two general terms used to describe a group of complex disorders of brain development.
Nneka studied Philosophy at University of Calabar, Nigeria. Many years from now, she sees herself still focus on working with kids with autism and other special needs, but on a much larger scale. "I see hope for them and I desire to make strong positive impacts and a whole lot of difference in their lives," she said.
She loves to read to broaden her mind. She also enjoys traveling, listening to good music and of course she loves to love. Having travelled a lot, she speaks English, Igbo language, Yoruba, a little bit of Efik. In the main time, she is working on her Spanish.
Jen as she is sometimes called, is a woman of grace, class and poise. Jenny with a 'brown hair' has golden highlights that matches her cute black dress. She looks so fun, yet calm and collected in her beautiful Day Dress - that could serve as a cocktail / dinner dress as well. Those Burberry glasses and silver pointy - toe flats, make her dress code a wrap!
Continue to soar higher Jenny! We love you!
April 01, 2016
Hello April, who do you have as our star of the month? Please give it up for our serene beauty, Roxxette Zepeda! Like all Mon's Pick stars of the month, Roxxette has an inspiring story to tell.
This hispanic beauty was born and raised in Mexico by her grandparents. At the age of 11, she relocated to the United States where she was raised by - her very hardworking - single father until she was 18 years age.
The apple they say doesn't fall far from the tree. Like her father, Roxxette wants more out of life. She has that fire in her that gives her the confidence to pursue anything she she puts her mind to. At a very young age, she had this dream of becoming a strong independent woman and she knew how to accomplish them. "Hardwork is the basis of everything worthwhile you will achieve in life," she said.
In 2012, she got accepted into California State University, Northridge (CSUN) to study Public Health. Her goal for now is to graduate from CSUN in Spring 2017 and get into a Masters in Nursing program (MSN).
Right now, Roxxette is very content with her life because she believes God has always smiled on her. For this reason, her career goal is to become a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit nurse (NICU), working in the Children Hospital while also conducting research for the Children's Hospital. That would be her way of contributing to the society.
Now, about Roxxette's photo. We love it! Despite sleepless nights conducting medical research, she still has time to give thanks to God. A thankful heart is a happy heart and this is one happy lady. Her hobbies consist of hiking, running, surfing, dirt biking, riding horses and medical research.
We wish you all the best in all your endeavors Roxxette. Keep up with the good work because it's going to pay off for sure!
March 01, 2016
Hello March, we have big plans for you with our graceful star of the mont, Marcillina Obaseki-Tietjen of Bremerhaven, Germany. Marcel as she is fondly called, incase you are wondering, she is off market!!! She happily married her German sweet heart with whom she lives with both in Nigeria and in Germany.
She currently works for a multinational company as the Human Resources Manager for the Africa Region. In 1996, after the completion her undergraduate program, she founded Angel Faces, a modeling agency focused on encouraging creativity in children. As a huge lover of education, Marcillina’s modeling agency also serves as a means for children to understand the importance of hard work as the best way to success. These kids earn reasonable amount of money from Fashion Shows, Prints, TV commercials and Radio commercial voice-overs, which in turn enables them have savings. The modeling contract ensures that the parent keeps a significant percentage of models earning in a fixed account which can only accessed when they turn 16.
Marcel who holds a Masters Degree in International Management from the University of Liverpool, when asked what inspires her, this is what she had to say: “I am inspired by several things; my mother, whom, despite growing up at a time when women were prohibited from going to school, succeeded in acquiring education and running a successful business all by herself. She encouraged my siblings and I to dream big, irrespective of gender. I am also inspired by people who make great efforts to improve their lives and positively affect their community.”
As a wife and career woman, she admires her mother of course, Ellen DeGeneres, Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey. She also admires NGOs such as Girl Hub – a NIKE Foundation - that helps empower the girl child to become the heartbeat of societies.
Her career plans five years from now is to be able to achieve greater success and contribute more to her community. How thoughtful is that? She also loves watching movies, reading inspiring novels, eating healthy and exercises regularly to keep her body and mind together.
Marcillina’s photo of the month radiates that distinctive beauty and confidence of a successful woman. Relaxing on a beautiful Saturday morning, with her locks swept sideways with a turquoise scarf that blends well with her beautiful skin and hot pink lipstick. A look so simple yet very elegant.
Marcel’s charm, poise and good deportment makes her one of the most down to earth people around us.
Keep up the good work Marcillina. We are proud of you!!!
February 01, 2016
The year is moving so fast. It's a new month already! The fabulous February with stunning Nkem of Northridge, California.
First of all, our February star enjoys writing and to introduce herself, she wrote: "Today is the best day of your life as your dreams have come true. You finally got to meet the girl who gives you flowers in your dreams. Hey guys! I go by the name Mimi; officially Nkemakonam Nwogwonuwe Obiageli. "
You got lost? Find yourself... This 20 year old caramel colored damsel who speaks only English Language is an aspiring Nurse. She was born and brought up in Nigeria. Being the second child of four children - the rest being boys-, she grew up having that motherly heart. You are open to request her for care. Lol! A die hard fan of Beyonce, ex-fan of Rick Ross. She loves whipped cream, fried nuts, fried plantain, fashion, make up and back packs. Weird right?
Mimi takes pleasure in being creepy, sleeping, social media and texting. She is currently 'taken' and do not wish to be 're-taken.' Her greatest dream is to see herself being successful, be able to take care of her brothers and also to build a great family in the future. She aspires to do some modeling as part-time job. She knows she has the face and she ain't gat nothing to lose.
Nkem's photo is stunning! She sent in a couple for us to choose from, but this particular shot in black and white, stood out. Loving the dark lipstick and smokey long lashes. What you see in the photo is what you get from Nkem. You can feel her vibrant, fun and stable personality.
She lives by what she calls the motto of life: "Live, love, eat and take pictures. Every moment is a Canon moment when a smile is involved."
Feel free to follow on Instagram (IG) @mimi_rozai
Lauretta Azegbeye Achudume
January 01, 2016
Happy New Year Mon's Pick readers! We made it into 2016! It's a brand new year and we have a brand new star of the month of January. Presenting, our very first star of the month for 2016, Lauretta Azegbeye Achudume of Abuja, Nigeria. This fair-skinned beauty is from Etsako, West Local Government Area, Edo State, Nigeria. The fourth child of five children of Mr. & Mrs. Stephen Ozuanu.
For those of you wishing this beautiful lady is single, sorry to dissapoint you, she is very married to a good-looking man from Delta State, Nigeria and their union has been blessed with three lovable children .
Lauretta, a Public Servant by profession in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is also the founder, Women of Like Minds Empowerment Initiative (WOLMEI), An NGO charged with the responsibility of empowering women and children and encouraging young people to do positive things. The 'super mom' is also the founder of the Miss Peace Nigeria - the first Peace Beauty pageant in Nigeria. Guess what? She is also an ex-beauty Queen who loves to volunteer her time to charity, she loves travelling, fashion, cooking, socializing, education and of course spending time with her family.
She holds a BSc. in Political Science from Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria. The education advocate also has an MSc. in Policy Analysis from University of Abuja, and currently rounding up another Masters program in Management at the University of Leicester, United Kingdom. She's hot right? Lol!
That's not all. She has attended some trainings and conferences both internationally and locally. This woman is loves education so much, she said "I want to go all the way in my quest for knowledge." Few years from now, she hopes to pursue her Ph.D. with a mission to create opportunities for women, and empower young people to thrive in our society. She said "I am open to innovations and I have a lot of respect for other people's views."
She speaks the English Language, her native dialect, Etsako including the popular Nigerian Pidgin English.
Now, about her photo. She said besides her family, she focuses her mind on the continuous improvement of her work. She submitted this particular photo which she describes as her real self while at work. Working hard does not make her forget about taking good care of herself. She believes everyone is beautiful in their own skin, however, taking good care of yourself makes you happy from within. Something that others will see and feed off as a positive vibe. Her fair skin has some kind of gold tone to it which makes her braids blend perfectly with her caramel skin. The black dress is just right, not too formal, but very fashion-forward.
Happy New Year to you and your entire family Lauretta! We wish you the best of what 2016 has to offer.