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Ashro Woman: Charmaine F.

Meet Ashro Woman of the Week, Charmaine, from Compton, CA

Charmaine describes the Ashro woman as “unstoppable.” We agree but would also add that Charmaine represents The Ashro Woman perfectly because she herself is unstoppable.

Despite a 21-year battle with cancer, Charmaine sees herself as immensely blessed by God. And she lives accordingly, volunteering at her church as a youth mentor in addition to other philanthropy.

Now retired, she has had a successful but demanding career providing sustainable housing for communities. Undoubtedly, Charmaine’s mother gave her a beautiful example to follow.

“When we moved to California, [my mother] could only speak Creole. She mastered English…finished high school, earned her bachelor’s degree and two masters degrees. She is humble, loving and always giving of herself.”

Family and faith are deeply important to Charmaine. I love spending time with family—cooking, sharing stories and inspiring each other. I enjoy my church family, reading and praising God for his continued blessings in my life.”

Charmaine Francois
Which city do you live?
Which state do you live?
How would you describe the Ashro woman? How do you embody her?
Authentic and real. The Ashro woman knows what she wants, designs her plan of action to obtain it and she goes for it. She is unstoppable
What do you do for a living? What do you like most about it? What don’t you like?
I am a retired Housing Professional who was responsible for creating and providing housing that would meet the needs of the community and provided opportunities for self-sufficiency and sustainability. I managed teams across the West Coast ensuring compliance and professional program implementation was taking place.
How do you spend your free time?
I love spending time with family cooking and sharing stories and inspiring each other, I enjoy my church family, reading and praising God for his continued blessings in my life
What small thing makes you happy?
Acts of kindness and love
What is your best dish? Who do you make it for—and where do you typically serve it?
Peach Cobbler, I make it for family Barbecues and get togethers. It is the perfect dish to end a day of fun and family fellowship.
What has been your greatest struggle…and your greatest (or latest) triumph?
My 21 year battle of living with Cancer. God has blessed me immensely.
Who influenced you the most in your life. Why? And in what way?
There are two people who have influenced my life, My mother who when we moved to California could only speak Creole. She mastered English finished high school, earned her AA, Bachelor Degree and two Master Degrees. She is humble, loving and always giving of herself. My husband is the other. He has such a loving and giving heart. He is highly intelligent and he has created and patented several scientific therapies that are being used nationwide.
Do you volunteer or do charity work? Tell us about it!
Prior to COVID, I was actively volunteering mentoring youth at my church, actively participation in Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc, HUB CITY Chapter.
Are you in a sorority? Or is anyone in your family in a sorority? If so, which one and what does it mean to you?
I am a Chapter organizing member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, XI Upsilon Chapter at Cal State University Dominguez Hills
What do you love about fashion and style?
A woman’s styles defines her. I am detail oriented so I pay close attention to the smallest of details.
Has anyone in particular influenced your style?
My mother, heads would turn when she walked into a room. in her younger days. She was so stylish.
What occasions/events do you dress up for? (for example-do you often dress up for church, cultural events, charity events, going out, etc.) And how often do you typically get dressed up?
I dress up for church, social/charity events or going to visit family and friends
How has your style evolved over time?
I love wearing clothing the enhances my figure and compliments my age.
Do you wear hats? How often and what type of hat? Do you wear them to church? If so, be sure to share a pic of you in a hat with us!
Occasionally, special church events, funerals and bad hair days
Do you wear headwraps? How often? Where did you learn how to tie it? Share a pic of you in a headwrap with us!
Rarely, during Black History Month
Do you wear wigs? How often and what length or style? If so, be sure to share a pic of you in a wig with us!
Yes, short or medium length
Are you a woman of faith? How does that faith affect your life? Please tell us more.
Yes, My faith guides how I live my life
Do you attend church? What church do you go to and what do you love most about it?
Yes, Holy Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in Compton, CA
How are you passing along your faith traditions onto your children/grandchildren?
Are you a First Lady or a Pastor?
Your best advice?
Always be honest with yourself.
What lessons has motherhood (or being a grandmother) taught you?
Motherhood has truly taught me what unconditional love is. A mother’s is a most powerful gift and blessing.
Are you an Ashro Credit customer? If so, how has our credit helped you?
I am not sure. I usually like paying cash for items. I love being debt free.

Thanks for inspiring us, Charmaine!

If you’d like a chance to be a future Ashro Woman of the Week, share your story with us—then watch your weekly Ashro emails to see if you’re featured next! Already filled out our questionnaire? Then you’re all set (you may see yourself featured in next week’s email)! Make sure to tell your friends and family to sign up for emails. We can’t wait to see you!


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