Her godmother called her ‘Queenie’ because she believed that she was going to rule. But what’s a reign without its challenges? Nackesha Doyley conquered the odds and is queen of her growing empire. She was the ninth of 10 children to a single mother, but grew up with only six of her siblings. She was a stubborn and exploratory child.
She could not explain how she felt at that moment, but she knew motherhood was not something she was ready for.
“I can’t even explain the feeling I had when I found out that I was pregnant. I was in second form and should be studying, but I was pregnant,” Doyley recalled.
She was not sure what she was supposed to do next, so instead of asking for help, she kept it as a secret for as long as she could. However, her mother eventually noticed and took her to a doctor where she got confirmation.
Her mother decided to give her a second chance at being a teenager, telling her that she would raise the child, with her, but if she had another she would be on her own. However, Doyley did not graciously accept her mother’s generosity. Instead, by the age of 14, she was on her own. She ran away from home and moved in with friends. She worked at a bar to get the money that she needed to go to school.
Two years into this lifestyle – visiting her child and disappearing again became exhausting to her. Her mother was unable to keep track of her, and she started to realise that this was not the lifestyle that she wanted for herself or her daughter.
“I did not want this kind of life for my daughter. I did not want her to grow up seeing her mother as the person that I was, so I decided to return home,” said Doyley.
The best comparison of her return home was the story of the prodigal son. Her mother took her in with open arms and Doyley never turned back. She finished her secondary education at Tacius Golding High School with exemplary grades.
After high school, Doyley was about to move again. This time she was not trying to run away from something, she was starting a new chapter. She was recruited by Winston ‘Bello’ Bell to work at Newstalk 93FM. It was then that she discovered her passion for music. She had always wanted to be a teacher or a nurse, but her experience at Newstalk made her realise that the music industry was where she really wanted and needed to be.
In September of 2011, Doyley started MIA (Music Industry Achiever) Production and in collaboration with that, the MIA Awards. According to Doyley, she could not sing or DJ, so she had to do something behind the scenes and her agency which does public relations, video directing and event planning is one that keeps her very fulfilled. She also started the awards because she believed that there were entertainers out there that did not get the credit that they deserved so she wanted to reward them for their efforts.
This was not easy to get started. She had a few ‘what am I doing?’ moments, but she managed to push through even when her very friends were obstacles in her way.
“I gave up at one point. It was hard, and then when the people around you were the ones trying to tear you down, it was difficult. I packed up and returned home,” said Doyley. She even went on to study practical nursing at Career Academics. But this was no longer her dream and she had to put on an extra backbone and return to her true love.
Though MIA has a far way to go, she has no intention of stopping and is proud of her accomplishments thus far. She is also furthering her education in media and communication at the Caribbean Institute of Media and Communication. This is truly important to her.
“I would tell young girls that it is not about the hype. I know what it is to be into the clothes and all that, but those things can always leave you. A good education is all you need to be successful, and once you have that, you can make it,” Doyley told Flair.
She especially believes that teenage mothers should not give up and become another statistic, “You can make it. Pregnancy is not the end of your life. I remember thinking that; and it is hard, but it is not impossible. They should try to not have another one before 20, but they can work hard and make it. I did it and it was hard, but it is rewarding.”
Making A -180- Nackesha “Queenie” Doyley’s Success Story (C.E.O) of M.I.A Awards/M.I.A Production