#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller

Lisa Santiago-Weber, 40, of Fountain Valley, CA

Lisa Santiago-Weber She is a mother of two who is striving to build a new life for herself and her family after her husband returned to his native Guatemala – and abandoned them. Studying to become a graphics designer, she is using her scholarship to defray expenses for the extension courses she’s taking and for classes at California State Fullerton in the fall. She is dedicating her efforts to her older sister, Jodi Weber Whyte, who was a never-ending source of inspiration for Lisa and who lost her battle with cancer in 2003.

“In the future I’d like to do some work for non-profit organizations,” Lisa said when asked about her hopes and dreams. “I’ve worked for the Legal Aid Society, and I’ve seen how important a helping hand can be to people in crisis. Most of all, I’d like to encourage other women to keep following their dreams, no matter how hard the struggle, so that we will be able to build a brighter future for our families, and for ourselves.”

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