When Gwyneth Paltrow’s GOOP magazine asked her to share any mom wisdom that she had, Tonya Lewis Lee suggested putting yourself first and making sure to own something outside of a spouse or kids. After establishing a career in law, she decided to pursue a dream in writing and producing. That dream developed into a creative career that stretched from authoring children’s books to writing the screenplay for HBO’s The Watsons Go To Birmingham. If she wasn’t busy enough in the creative space, Lewis Lee is an active advocate for women’s health.
For 7 years, I traveled the country with the campaign talking about the ways in which we can reduce the infant mortality issue in the U.S. In the second year of the campaign we started a program, Preconception Peer Educator where we enlisted college students to become peer educators around issues of health. It was incredible work that has given me the opportunity to see the country and the people in this country…and there are amazing people who do hard, important work on the grass roots level who receive very little recognition or reward for their work. Lots of angels out there.
Tonya discusses more about her work campaigning for prenatal care to prevent infant mortality, and her upcoming work adapting the Walter Dean Myers novel Monster. Movito, the food vitamin supplement she’s developing, is Lewis Lee’s next jump into women’s health. Read the full interview here.