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Biography of Public Speaker and Starting Over Coach Iyanla Vanzant


Iyanla Vanzant

Iyanla Vanzant

Bio provided by NBC.

A powerful, positive and larger-than-life force of personality, Iyanla Vanzant brings a special brand of empathy to her life coaching work on STARTING OVER. Iyanla joins the STARTING OVER house to share her wisdom, compassion and enthusiasm for life, with what she calls the "sisterhood of women" who believe in the power of television.

For 24 years Vanzant studied everyone and everything that spoke to personal strength, personal growth and empowerment. She then integrated that information with her own experiences and developed a common sense approach for addressing life’s challenges. Her frank, down-to-earth, and inspiring manner resulted in the publication of ten books over a span of seven years, five of which were New York Times best-sellers.

An immensely popular public speaker, Vanzant teaches an accessible process for discovering spiritual identity and its inherent power. Her work, she says, “Teaches people how to move beyond whatever has happened in their lives in order to do and be what we came to life to do and be.” Vanzant teaches that one cannot evolve politically, socially or economically until one evolves spiritually. She conveys this message with love, humor and humility and her approach has earned her an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York.

As the Chief Executive Officer of Inner Visions Worldwide, Inc. Spiritual Life Maintenance Center in Silver Spring, MD, Vanzant conducts workshops and classes and coordinates a correspondence prison ministry with more than 3,500 incarcerated members in over 150 penal institutions nationwide. In October 2000, Iyanla headed the faculty of the Inner Visions Institute for Spiritual Development, offering a two-year certification program in Spiritual Counseling and Life Coaching, based on the principles covered in her best selling books.

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