Indie Soul Spotlight: Dia Simms


— Dia Simms was the keynote speaker at a business conference hosted by The Greater Baltimore Urban League on February 19, 2015. Simms is president of Combs Wine & Spirits, a Sean Combs Company. Simms oversees the strategic execution of all brands under the House of Combs. The charge includes brands such as Revolt TV, Aquahydrate, Sean John, Cîroc Ultra Premium Vodka and DeLeon Tequila. She also sits on the boards of the Boys and Girls Club of Harlem and Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (National). She is also married and has a daughter.

Indie Soul had the chance to catch up with the Morgan State University graduate to discuss women in business, entrepreneurship and Madison Avenue when she was in Baltimore last month.

“Entrepreneurs are under represented on Madison Avenue on a leadership front. Minorities and women are missing. We need to make sure our high school students know that being an advertising director is viable career. When others, who are in the field see interest we need to reach out and offer mentorship. We need to give back,” Simms said.

“Entrepreneurs should use social media and public relations. These platforms are very useful with small budgets. Using social media, you can have better conversations when reaching out to promote your brand. [An] entrepreneur’s job is to find the right people for your brand to represent you. Using social media can make your brand just as effective as the big companies.’ Know who you are going after. Be selective and specific. Social Media is the most efficient tool to use to get the word out.”

What drives Simms, as she explains, is her extraordinary relationship with time. “People let 10 years go by and still talk about the same thing as they were going to be or do 10 years ago. I am truly grateful for all that I have done. If you start from a place of being grateful you can be successful,” Simms said.

Her words of advice for women, “Keep doing what you are doing. Do not be scared of your femininity that you bring to the leadership role by being a woman. Don’t shy away from who you are.”

Next for Simms, other than potty training a toddler, is introducing the new Tequila Deleon for Combs Wine and Spirits.

Indie Soul welcomes your questions and comments. To contact Phinesse Demps, call 410-366-3900 ext. 3016 or 410-501-0193 or email: Follow him on Twitter@pdemps_btimes.