Local Entrepreneur Guest for 'Tea with Dr. B' event

Whitteney Guyton, who owns numerous and varied businesses in Hampton Roads, will discuss her journey to entrepreneurship as the guest speak at the third “Tea with Dr. B” gathering. The event, hosted by Virginia Peninsula Community College president Dr. Towuanna Porter Brannon, is scheduled for Feb. 22 from 3-4 p.m. at the Peninsula Workforce Development Center conference room.

“I like to show people that because I am human and can get things done, you can too,” Guyon said.

She grew up in the Chicago suburbs, but moved to Hampton Roads to attend Norfolk State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She later earned a master’s in counseling from St. Leo University.

She wants those in attendance to know she has experienced some of the same struggles they might be going through. As for the message she hopes to convey, it’s one of self-care. Don’t allow outside things, including social media, make you feel less than because you don’t have what others have.

“Every day is a day for you to have your own moment,” she said.

She also wants to help alleviate people’s anxiety about being prosperous or successful.

“A lot of times, we put a bar up and we want to measure against that bar. A lot of that is internal,” she said. “I would like to help people understand you don’t need to put all that anxiety on your shoulders. Prioritize and be OK with you.”

Her calendar is filled with speaking engagements at two- and four-year colleges, but she is partial to the former.

“Universities get all the attention, and I believe the community colleges don’t get the same attention,” she said. “That’s unfair because it’s the same type of people. They have the same type of aspirations in life.”

Guyton has lived in the area for 21 years and says it’s the place where she became an “adult adult” after Illinois shaped her into a “young adult.”

Among her businesses or ones held by her companies:

  • We Buy the Block, an investment group that revitalizes minority communities.
  • 1865 Brewery in Hampton.
  • Birds & Bourbon, which bills itself as “an upscale chicken joint.” There are locations in Norfolk and Portsmouth. 
  • Creek Manor, a six-acre campus in Gloucester that offers residential mental health treatment for youths.

The first of the “Tea with Dr. B” events, held Oct. 12, was a discussion on critical race theory with Dr. Jamel K. Donnor of the College of William & Mary. That was followed Nov. 30 by Mike Petters, a former president and CEO of Huntington Ingalls Industries, who discussed service to country and others.

Due to limited seating for the event, please register at https://forms.gle/CqdtRn6Tr5BSg1rL7.