Copper and Brass Sales is celebrating Black History Month by shining spotlights on a few exceptional employees and sharing their inspiring journeys. Through these engaging interviews, three acclaimed employees reveal the ups and downs throughout their lives, as well as how thyssenkrupp Materials NA became a fundamental part of their life’s journey.
Today, we are spotlighting our Senior Accountant, Latasha. She has just celebrated her 14th year with Copper and Brass Sales on February 1st of 2022, after beginning her career as an accounting clerk. Transitioning to different roles over the years, for a time as AP Processor and then Staff Accountant at Online Metals, Latasha is now back with Copper and Brass Sales as a Senior Accountant.
Latasha has had an interesting trajectory to her career. She was first introduced to the accounting industry as a teenager when working at an automotive plant in the shipping department. Her manager at the time gave her the opportunity to explore accounting and guided her in that aspect. Although Latasha pursued a degree in Computer Information Systems during college, she found her way back to doing what she truly loved: accounting. Today she continues to pursue her goals with grit and determination by additionally working to achieve her bachelor’s degree in accounting.
Latasha’s work history and experiences highlight her as someone who has advanced through different aspects of the business and has rightly earned herself great opportunities due to her willingness and ability to wear multiple hats, while persevering in her roles. Latasha mentioned that she quickly became a natural fit for new roles as she often took on additional responsibilities as needed and as it made sense. It is clear that she is highly regarded by her peers and supervisors as a hardworking, invaluable, and well-qualified employee.
When asked about the biggest challenge throughout her career, Latasha stated, “getting in my own way.” She felt that she doubted herself at times throughout her career. Like the old saying goes, ‘You are your own worst enemy.’ Luckily, with the help of various women leaders in her life, many of whom she still works with today, Latasha grew in her confidence immensely and continues to strive for the better. She was certainly not shy to offer praise about others and gave credit for a countless number of people who helped in her success. There were so many names mentioned that we lost count!
“I am blessed,” she says. She feels that the people who have touched her life in her career are the reason she’s still here and stays in thyssenkrupp Materials NA family. Latasha feels that the people within her group help to make her experiences worthwhile and keep the humanity in the business. She credits many of the women in the group with her professional, and even personal, development. Everyone there seems to want to build one another up and are eager to share any knowledge that could help them become better at their jobs. If any task needed deeper explanation, her peers were always open to show her step-by-step how it could be accomplished. The safe and nurturing environment she is surrounded with certainly seems to have instilled the positivity and confidence that we heard from her in this interview.
While Latasha never experienced any challenges in her career due to her race, she has noticed the lack of African American women in the accounting industry. Latasha aspires to do her best, become a positive reflection of her race in her role and organization, and to encourage more people in the Black community to apply for jobs in the industry. Her goal is to mentor and share with her team the countless gems she picked up along the way as she is eager to pay it forward, and help mold the upcoming accountants in their career, while progressing in her own career towards a role in management.
Throughout the interview, it was clear that Latasha is, without a doubt, someone that draws people to her fun, loving, and caring personality. Her abundance of energy, optimistic outlook, and her compassion for people is tangible. Latasha says her mother and grandmother played a big role in who she is today as they were always willing to go out of their way to help others, saw the good in people, and didn’t allow bad things to weigh them down. These two women were foundational and stable role models in her life, teaching her to strive for better and to always believe in herself.
From our interview with Latasha, there’s one thing we learned – it’s the belief that igniting someone else’s flame doesn’t dim your own light. Her light, which came from a few of her leaders’ torches, is already igniting many other’s torches. Copper and Brass Sales is grateful that Latasha found her way to us and that we’ve had the opportunity to share her illuminating story with you through our celebration of Black History Month.