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Rising Stars: Meet Heather Dotson of Elkton

Today we’d like to introduce you to Heather Dotson.

Hi Heather, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start, maybe you can share some of your backstories with our readers?
My name is Heather Dotson. I’m a daughter, sister, Aunt, and future foster mom. My life has been full of ups, downs, twists, turns, and plenty of learning curves. You never stop learning! After high school, I attended the Broadcasting Institute of Maryland, earning my degree in Radio/Communications. Being in the radio business was always a dream of mine! I went on to produce many on-air commercials and voiceovers for radio one in Baltimore. Being behind the scenes taught me a ton and allowed me to meet many celebrities and attend concerts/events all over the city. Interviewing DJ Khaled was my favorite! I worked in promotions at a local radio station in Wilmington, DE. After seven years in the radio industry, I left to help manage the family business. We served over 100+ people every day at our smoothie shop. I eventually went on to open my shop in my hometown of Elkton. Between all of this, I have been a substitute teacher since I was 18 years old! Kids make my heart so happy!!! You can also catch me as a background actor in many big films if I’m not teaching. Creed 2 was my ultimate favorite experience!! No matter what it is, never stop chasing your dreams!!

Can you talk to us about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Oh no! Not an easy road at all. Starting in the radio industry was a challenge. It’s ultimately a male-dominated profession, so being a young small-town girl with no experience made me work extra hard. My passion for radio drove me to soak up every ounce of knowledge I could from the local radio DJs and producers. I eventually grew to where the station managers would come to me to ask for my input. After many early mornings and long nights, I decided I wanted a change because I missed my family so much. After learning the ropes in the family business and going on to open my shop 8 years later, I was truly enjoying being my boss. But after 3 years in business, my health took a huge turn. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease called ulcerative colitis, which ended up losing my entire colon. For months I was so sick! I couldn’t eat without being in pain. I was nauseous every day, barely sleeping, and could barely walk because of joint pain. I went on having to receive 8 blood transfusions, which also inspired me to start my annual blood drive. I will live with this chronic disease for the rest of my life, but being around kids has brought so much joy to my life. Whether in the classroom, on the football field, or basketball court, coaching my teams, the radio business stills is a part of me. You can catch me dj’ing local games or recording a new podcast episode!

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
My life is full of amazing experiences! And if you ask me what I made, the list could go on and on. From getting my start working at a large market radio station in Baltimore to cheering on Michael B . Jordan in a scene for Creed 2 or teaching the ABCs to a kindergarten class. My greatest moment that I’m so proud of is serving a shake to my grandfather, who was my number one customer! Spending time with family is the most important thing to me in life. What sets me apart from others is that I can spark a conversation with just about anybody. Some would say my unique sense of style and haircut make me memorable, lol. After battling a chronic illness, I view life from a different perspective. I try to slow down as much as possible and enjoy life, but I also love to be present and cheer someone else on. Many would say I’m just about everywhere, lol. As I grow older and reflect on my life experiences, I think of myself not only as an entrepreneur but as a mentor, especially for kids and teens. I have always said, “Little eyes are always watching”!

Is there anyone you’d like to thank or give credit to?
There have been countless cheerleaders, advocates, supporters, clients, and teammates in my life. But only a few mentos that I would confide in. I believe everyone needs a mentor who believes in your goals and dreams, supports you, guides you, and helps you achieve them. Of all the professional athletes and celebrities I have met in my life, two people who helped me and guided me through life were my grandparents. No matter what I wanted to do as a job, they always encouraged me to pursue it with all my heart. When I was a broke college kid trying to drive an hour to the radio station daily, they helped me put gas in my tank. Anytime I did an interview or recorded a commercial, they were the first ones I sent it to. Their feedback and opinion always meant the most to me. After I opened my smoothie shop, my grandfather barely missed a visit. And still, to this day, I live by my grandmother’s words, “never let it rest until your good is better and your better is best.”

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  1. Robin K Wilson

    July 16, 2022 at 10:07 pm

    Awesome job Heather I respect you and look up to you everyday you are such a inspiration more then you will ever know your parents are the best I look up to them becasue they are such a inspiration to me especially you Mom keep up the work we all love you

  2. Tonia Roop

    August 2, 2022 at 9:43 am

    Heather is so giving and encouraging ,she inspires so many people,buy her example,she has her battles with health issues,but that has never stopped her.She is driven ,compassionate. She volunteers for local communities giving of her time and love for others.

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