Let’s face it, inspiration comes in many different ways – whether it’s overcoming debilitating illnesses or defying the odds risking deportation to be with the one you love – but yet Valerie Facey has managed to do all of this and more. This is usually fodder for an entertaining Romantic Comedy or a Lifetime made for TV movie. But Valerie Facey has lived it. In this video, she speaks about her nomadic mother, overcoming rape and then some. So, you if you only knew her as either the supportive wife of Maurice Facey of the Pan Jamaican Group, the doting mother of controversial sculptor, Laura and son Steven or as a publisher (Mill Press) and art patron – be prepared to be awed. In short, Valerie has guts, and we’re not just talking about cardio fitness.

And maybe it was because yesterday was International Women’s Day or that this week is Women in Power, but it seemed like the perfect time for us to feature her from the IamDana.com, Portrait Series. Here’s what Valerie had to say.