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Supermom | Kimberly Ray

Supermom | Kimberly Ray

SuperMom: Kimberly Ray

-Liesel Schmidt

Being the director of events and sponsorships for the Coastal Alabama Business Chamber in Gulf Shores/Orange Beach, Kimberly Ray is always managing a vast calendar of events, meeting with member business owners, and creating opportunities for the businesses in the chamber’s membership to network. It is time consuming, demanding work, but Ray has learned the art of keeping the plates spinning—even as she juggles work with motherhood.

The single mother of a 17-year-old daughter, Ray has even more responsibility on her plate in having to raise her child on her own. “It can be hard and stressful at times to be a working mom, but it’s also very rewarding,” she says. “When my daughter was younger, it was difficult being a single mom and juggling her from place to place. But thankfully, I have a huge support system in my family and friends, and she never went without a ride and never missed a school function. Now that she can drive, she has a life of her own. I miss the days when I could chauffeur her from place to place, because that’s where most of our best conversations took place. But it is so rewarding to see her as a working teenager and holding responsibilities and offices in school organizations and church groups.”

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As her daughter’s greatest role model, Ray feels the weight of the example she sets, but she also takes pride in what she’s shown her daughter. “I feel like I have shown her what true work ethic looks like,” Ray says. “She has always seen me work, from restaurant jobs when she was little to hospitality management positions as she grew older and now having a job I love, that makes me feel so enriched and as though I belong. My daughter started working at a young age for my mom and has held a job since. She now works two jobs and babysits on the side, so she knows how to balance a work and social life.”

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