Alexia Vernon: Leading the Leaders
By Debbie Hall
Recently branded a Moxie Maven by the White House and since winning the Miss Junior America competition as a college women’s studies student; Alexia Vernon has been empowering people, companies, campuses, professional associations, and community organizations to build a new generation of heart-centered, high-impact communicators and ethical leaders.
Along with public speaking and executive coaching, Vernon is an author and the creator of Step Into Your Moxie, a women’s empowerment platform. She is the founder of Influencer Academy, a nine-month women’s leadership development experience. Influencer Academy is designed for rising female leaders who are ready to grow their confidence, ambition, and impact by cultivating their skills in such critical leadership areas as public speaking, coaching, interpersonal communication, persuasion, negotiation and facilitating difficult conversations.
Born in southern California and raised in Seattle, Vernon received her Bachelor of Arts in women’s studies from University of Nevada, Las Vegas and attended New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study where she created a Master of Arts focusing on gender studies, theatre for social change and leadership development. Vernon also completed the Core Essentials and Advanced Coaching program through Coach U and is certified with the International Coach Federation.
“It wasn’t until I was in my mid-20s that I realized people could have a career as speakers, coaches and trainers,” Vernon explained. “I began my career leading professional development for an educational theatre company.”
Vernon continued, “One of my co-workers told me that there was a burgeoning field of coaching. Shortly after beginning my training program at Coach U, through New York’s Step Up Women’s Network, I was able to connect with next-generation thought leader and The New York Times best-selling author, Gabrielle Bernstein. She became my first formal mentor, even though she is just a year older, and was instrumental in helping me see the many different ways I could build a business that allowed me to serve the world ‘Lex-style.’ She supported me in developing my first book proposal, attracting a larger audience to my work and developing the self-care practices to sustain me in doing this work.”
As for her inspiration, Vernon admitted, “My daughter, Kaia (due end of December), is my greatest inspiration to give 100 percent to the work I know I was put on this earth to do. I want her to know she can run a Fortune 500 company, discover a cure for a debilitating illness or devise sustainable solutions to large-scale global problems. Yet what I want for her, above all else, is to look in the mirror and love the woman she sees.”
One of the most profound areas of Vernon’s life is her involvement with Family and Child Treatment of Southern Nevada, a nonprofit that is providing rehabilitation and education to people impacted by the cycle of sexual and physical abuse in Southern Nevada. She served on its board and has led career coaching groups for men in their sex offender treatment program.
“That has been simultaneously one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my professional life. Having been sexually abused as a child, I was hungry to be a part of the productive rehabilitation and reintegration of these men into the Las Vegas community, but I’d be lying if I said it did not bring up all kinds of old wounds for me,” Vernon said. “(Still) … while simultaneously teaching me that the only way to help people who have committed unspeakable acts to move on is to support them in overcoming their shame, forgiving themselves for their mistakes, identifying how they can become productive members of society and obtaining gainful employment.”
Alexia Vernon demonstrates through her words and action she is truly a Fearless Female.