Imagine your life as the youngest of 11 children, born and raised on a small island in the middle of the Caribbean where chasing the American dream is not only encouraged but also cherished. For Christina Lafontant, who later became Christina Bridgeforth, the pursuit of the American dream started at the young age of 4, after her mother suddenly relocated to the United States and opened her life to a world full of endless possibilities.
When by the age of 13, Christina boarded her first airplane from Port-au-Prince Haiti to Washington D.C., it was for a trip that had greatly been anticipated for the past 9 years. Her love affair with America had finally started and Christina dove in head first and never looked back.
A week after exiting the airport and reuniting with old family members as well as new, it was time to start school. They say High school can be intimidating, but for Christina it was truly a magical time. During the first year, Christina studied English intensely for close to 5 hours a day. Her only subjects for the entire year were English and mathematics. To her group of eclectic friends, she would say she speaks, Creole, French and Mathematics and it went on like this for 2 years.
By the end of her high school career, Christina was a fluent English speaker who enjoyed being an important member of her community. She became the president and spokesperson for groups as well as the president of the W.E.B. Dubois society, an organization that encourages the pursuit of higher education for all. It was during that time that Christina honed on her skills as a public speaker, while growing her love for education, which would eventually influence her to become an educator.
While serving as president of the W.E.B. Dubois Society, Christina met one of the most influential person in her life, Miss Cassandra White, who guided her to Spelman College, the nation’s top ranked historically black institution in the education of women of African descent. It was also while at Spelman College that she met a charismatic young man who was attending Morehouse College, from Tanner Alabama, who proudly declared himself a fifth generation farmer, Mr. B. Carlton Bridgeforth. After dating for several years and they were married in April 2013 and have resided in Decatur Alabama since.
For Christina, Spelman was where she learned what is to be truly empowered, to be engaged and to utilize her experiences as a mean to inspire positive social changes. It was based on those principals that years after graduating from Spelman, upon completion of her Master’s degree in Elementary education that Christina relocated to Kochi, India for a year to work on a very special education project that would greatly benefit children with special needs, gifted students as well as the general education teachers. Upon completion of the project, Christina returned to Decatur and was immediately hired as a third grade teacher at Eastwood Elementary where she pursues her love of teaching and always her love of all things Americas, especially now that she is an American citizen. For Christina, he American dream is not just a dream, it is a part of her life story, and it is a part of her.
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CHRISTINA BRIDGEFORTH'S EVENTS FOR CARNEGIE CARNIVAL QUEEN CAMPAIGN
January 15th – 5:00-8:00PM
Barbecue Bourbon and Blues
Simp McGhees 725 Bank St,
February 4th – 7:00-9:00pm
Carnegie Visual Arts Center 207 Church Street
Cocktail Party Attire
February 23rd – 6:30-9:30pm
$25 Buy in—Cash bar
The Magnolia Room 216 E Moulton
The Magnolia Room 216 E Moulton St