Lisa Delmedico Harris, 42, grew up in Fort Gibson with a drive to excel. Combining down home country values with an education in fashion merchandising and a chance meeting after college proved to be the formula that made Harris an author and a mentor of young women.
At 12, Harris entered an Oklahoma “Miss Cinderella” contest, and with a growing interest, she entered 200 additional contests.
She entered Bauder Fashion College in Arlington, Texas, studying fashion merchandising, receiving an associate’s degree and then met Susan Huston who became her mentor.
With their small town backgrounds and interest in teaching, together they strove forward, Harris said.
“I had never heard of charm school and I knew very little about the industry of etiquette,” Harris said on her website. “I was amazed at what I learned under Ms. Huston’s tutelage.”
Harris also credits her faith with giving her the strength to teach women how to achieve their goals.
“This is the right time in our society for young women to turn to cultivating inner beauty to accomplish good things,” Harris said recently in an interview.
In 2001, Harris said she had a revelation to write a book about beauty, poise and charm. She said that she feels those elements combined with faith are key to growth and survival in modern times. When asked about the ordeal of Elizabeth Smart, the young Morman girl kidnapped and tortured for more than a year who managed to survive, Harris said “It was her faith that made the difference.”
She is the author of The Official Princess Handbook and Princess Charm School, both of which are available on her website. Currently at work on a third to be called “Raising a King’s Daughter,” she is married to Dusty, a high school English teacher and rancher. She has two daughters Raychel,14, and Sarah, 17.
When asked what she would advise a young 12-year-old girl struggling to come to grips with today’s choices who may not have a strong family life, Harris said, “I would tell her that you may not be in a perfect situation right now. Keep your head up. Don’t lose hope.”
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