Total loan: $15,000


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Hayward, CA, United States / Education

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A loan helped a woman veteran publisher to continue making inspirational bilingual, Captain Mama children's books.

Graciela's story

My parents from Mexico never would've imagined their first-born daughter would rebel so hard against traditional gender/cultural norms and low educational expectations that she'd become a military officer and aviator, flying for the U.S. Air Force for a decade after graduating from Berkeley. I loved that decade of global aviation service and adventure so much that I created Gracefully Global Group LLC, an independent educational publishing company, to launch the first-ever children's picture book series in which Mami wears a military flight suit and flies on a flying gas station! My son called me "Captain Mama" when he first saw me in my flight suit; I drafted the series debut "Good Night Captain Mama/Buenas Noches Capit�n Mam� that night and went fully into the business of inspiration. Since 2013, we've sold tens of thousands of books to schools, libraries, military families, and corporations. I�ve presented in Spanish & English to many thousands of children, informing and exciting them about technical aviation careers. Very importantly, I�m showing our world that women, Latinas, and moms are veterans too! We've published the second book, �Captain Mama�s Surprise / La Sorpresa de Capit�n Mam�," been recognized by the Obama White House, honored at the House of Representatives, and won six literary awards in international competitions for this ground-breaking series. 2020: We had hired the illustrator to create artwork for third book when covid19 cancelled ALL conference keynotes, school visits, airshow events and therefore 90% of 2020 book sales. We're dedicated to continuing this mission, to inspire children with my service story via award-winning aviation books. This loan will help us get back on schedule, pay our illustrator, market the new title, publish and print the first 2000 copies. Goal is to publish by Veterans Day 2021, latest April 2022 (Month of the Military Child.)