Felicia Jackson, the inventor and owner of CPR Wrap, was certified in CPR but froze when her toddler son stopped breathing in the back seat of her car in 2002. Thanks to the quick actions of her husband, their son survived, but Jackson walked away with a new mission. CPR Wrap makes it possible for anyone to effectively perform CPR at a moment's notice. A physical therapist with over 20 years of medical experience in acute inpatient rehab, outpatient care and home health care, Jackson has built her business on the mission of making performing CPR less intimidating and more accessible to everyone. She graduated from Launch Chattanooga's Entrepreneurial Academy in 2015, and from the CO.LAB Accelerator in 2016. In 2017, she was named the Chattanooga State Community College Alumnae of the Year. In 2018, her business was named the CO.LAB Startup of the Year.
What books have you read and recommended to others that influence how you've developed your career?
When I was younger, I can remember the time and effort I put into reading every book I could get my hands on. I would immerse myself in the storyline and become the characters. My love for reading has never faltered, but I must admit I no longer have the time to read hours upon hours. As an entrepreneur of a growing company, I go through the day-to-day business, oftentimes learning as I go. I came to the realization that it's very important to never stop learning, building, and improving upon yourself. Great leaders seek out and are open to new ideas and fresh perspectives.
Through the years, I've come across a few books that have shaped my path from mother and health care worker to entrepreneur and CEO of a globally used CPR product. Some books that have helped shaped my life and influence my leadership style are "The Lean Startup" by Eric Ries, which showed me it was OK to pivot, and how to accomplish things on a grand scale with minimal resources. The "4-Hour Workweek" by Tim Ferriss taught me how to recognize my weakness and how to bring on people who complement my strengths. "The Power of Broke" by Daymond John reaffirmed what I already knew about using the hard times and barriers we face as drivers to accomplish our successes.
What books have you recently read for pleasure that you're telling others about?
I am fortunate to live in a city where there are many self-published authors, and because I believe in supporting hard-working, determined entrepreneurs, I have many books by local storytellers. A couple are "What Every Queen Should Know" by Shavonna Bush and "The Well Ran Dry: Memoirs of a Motherless Child" by Linda Bullard.
What is next on your to-read list?
I can't wait to read a book I won called "Super Maker: Crafting Business on Your Own Terms" by Jaime Schmidt. This author started her global brand from her kitchen. This story aligns with my own journey and I love to surround myself with motivated, passionate, determined people.