How I Came to Stand On My Power
When, I look back at my life so far, I am often in awe. And isn’t that a great way to reminisce about one’s own story?
Of course, no story is perfect, and neither is mine. But it is filled with crossroads and fortunes that brought me to where I am today. And where I am going is exactly where I want to be.
My childhood was the traditional Midwest upbringing filled with love, family, sports, and the arts. I was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, to a pair of adventurous, educated, caring, humble, and brave parents, Samuel and Sara Lynn Standard. Samuel and Sara Lynn were very much in love, and they shared that affection with my brother, Samuel Standard, and with me.
I was named after my great-great aunt, Natasha Norie Standard. She was known as an auspicious feminist with an organically powerful spirit. Throughout my life, my paternal grandmother, Aria Ella Curry, showered me, her only granddaughter, with fashionable and luxurious gifts. When I was 12, she purchased my first Vogue magazine. That was the beginning of my lifelong love affair with fashion.
After high school, I enrolled in the United States Army and worked my way up to the rank of Field Grade Officer. During my time in the military, graduated from Hampton University with a bachelor’s of science degree; got married; pledged Alpha Kappa Alpha while earning a master’s of art degree from University of Kansas; moved to New York City; and divorced my Wall Street executive husband.
I had accomplished all these things probably because I had a knack for logistics — my military career spanned many specialized deployments, VIP missions, and special operations missions around the world.
After retiring from the U.S. Army, I moved to Memphis and took a position with Williams Sonoma’s regional headquarters as a supply chain manager working in global supply. I also transferred over to the Memphis Chapter of the Links, and earned a second master’s of art degree from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).
After a while, I felt like I had become a statistic so I left my job at Williams Sonoma. I took off to Milan, Italy, where I attended a prestigious footwear development and design school.
Following that six-month stint, I had reached a pivot point in my life and career. I had to make a choice — continue the statistical route by attending an interview with Amazon Corporate, or pursue my organically powerful passion for luxury footwear. I decided to bet on myself.
I launched Norie Shoe Company and embarked on a career curating my designer Italian shoe line.
It seemed the logical choice. I had 20 years of intense practical military leadership, corporate-level management, multiple higher education degrees, and a certificate from a world-renowned footwear design school. I knew what to do to get what I wanted and needed for me.
At some point, you have to decide, are you going to become the person you already are? Are you going to live the “imposter syndrome” or are you going to stand on the power you spent your life accumulating?
I decided that I deserved the reward of living my passion. I earned the right to make choices that suited me. It is not a selfish decision.
And as I looked around, I knew that I was not the only woman who believes in herself and earned the right to be choosy. And I’m certainly not the only one who demands the highest quality and best fit.
So to honor all the other women who stand on their power, I bring you Norie Shoes, for those of you who want to enjoy the spoils of success.
Natasha Norie Standard, Founder, Norie Shoes