by Keiyana McIntosh and Bri'Ann Stephens
Imagine the life that you dreamed about coming to fruition. Imagine working with notable brands, winning despite the odds, and getting your fairy tale partner. That is just what Porcherria was able to accomplish, right after graduating from Texas Southern University.
Most people will tell you that trying to find a good job in your field after graduation is a waste of time. They would even tell you that moving to a new state without a secured job is insane, but not for Porcherria "Peaches" Huff.
She has worked for media companies such as Tyler Perry Studios, BET/Viacom, NBC Universal, and Netflix. More recently, she has had the opportunity to work with Revolt TV/Media’s own “Black Girl Stuff” talk show series.
Life hasn't always been glitz and glam for Porcherria. She has overcome many challenges while creating the life she loves. Despite the odds, she's come out on top because when life gave her peaches, she made a Bellini (look it up).
Keiyana: Whether it is positive or negative-- what significant events have played a factor in the woman you are today?
Porcherria: Taking a leap of faith and moving to Atlanta in December 2016 (without a job , family or friends based in Atlanta) was one of the most significant things that shaped the woman I am today at 30. It made me work harder and it made me focus. It made me realize that sacrifice is not as scary. Initially, I was scared, but now that I’ve made it through it, it made me realize that it's okay to sacrifice. I learned to be myself, though at times that can be kind of difficult.
The second most significant thing that happened to me within a few months of moving to Atlanta, was meeting my now husband. I had found somebody to support me. It took me getting into a relationship for me to think more clearly, make sound decisions, and do a lot of self-reflection. I believe that because he's six years older than me that it caused me to mature more as a woman; shaping me to start making smart decisions.
This motivated me to want more because when I first got here, it was about me and just me. I didn't plan on having kids. I never thought about marriage. I thought I was gonna be the rich auntie that traveled the world, but I became a girl who loved the industry, who found a man and now I want a family. So my perspective changed, but that's why I am who I am today and I'm able to do all the things that I do because of the move and because of the man.
Keiyana: What about the industry of TV production captivated you and how has that dream progressed?
Porcherria: As I was getting my master's, there were a couple of people that graduated from TSU, making 6-figures. They worked in the entertainment industry and I followed them around to learn what they knew, and eventually, they became mentors of mine. I started attending their classes and I made it my business to be in their business. Eventually, I got my first job as a Production Assistant (PA).
From there, I was in between jobs as a graduate student when I started working with BET for 'Being Tasha Cobbs’ and ‘Being Michelle Williams’. At the time Matthew Knowles was my professor in grad school, and he was surprised to see me working as PA while they were interviewing him for ‘Being Michelle Williams’. One day Mr. Knowles called me and said, “Hey, BET is gonna call you because you are gonna be a PA for them.” I said to myself, I don't know what to do. He was said, "just do, don't think, just do, they gonna help you out." That's where that all started. When I got to BET, I met a coordinator, Nadia Brown; she was from Atlanta and worked at Tyler Perry Studios from what I knew. From there I stayed connected with her.
She is the one who walked me through the whole process. My other friend, David Joseph was the lead producer on the show, and he was friends with the person who referred me. I stayed in touch with them for the next year. While I was still in grad school, one of my mentors (who got me into the industry) got into a bad car accident and passed away. He and I were supposed to head to Atlanta together, but when I made it to ATL I got the call about him getting into the accident. I made it my goal to go forward for both of us as planned.
Since I didn't have a job, I reached out to my friend David who was in New York and I told him I was looking for a job. He suggested reaching out to Nadia since she lived in Atlanta. I emailed her, and within a few days she emailed me back and asked, “can you start tomorrow?” Followed by, “have you ever been an office PA?” I replied no, but she just gave me the address. She did not tell me where, she just gave me an address; telling me what time to be to work and everything. Now, in between that time, I did not work for a whole month. A month doesn't sound like a long time, but when you've just graduated college and you’re by yourself in another state with no family and friends; it’s a very long time.
The next morning my mama was lying to everybody saying that I worked at Tyler Perry because people were trying to figure out why I would move to Atlanta without having a job. But it's because I'm a risk taker. To my surprise, when I pulled up, it was Tyler Perry Studios. I said to myself, my mama called this. They told me I would be working on ‘If Loving You is Wrong' Season 3. I was at Tyler Perry Studios for eight months and I gradually made my way up in the industry. My show ended and there was no more work, but some people referred me to other jobs. Tyler Perry Studios is what helped me move up in my position because they trained me to do everything I know how to do. To this day, I have way more experience than my title deserves. Seriously. I became a secretary, and an assistant production coordinator. I eventually became a production coordinator, which is the highest in the production office. I’ve worked on projects like Good Girls, Raising Dion on Netflix, and Nancy Drew.
As time went on, I gained experience by watching producers. I even assisted a couple of producers, I realized that I should be producing. I asked myself, "how can I become a producer?" As mentioned before, my friend David is a producer. I reached out to him, and he started referring me to jobs. He got me a job being a field producer last year in North Carolina at an HBCU pitching competition at Johnson Smith University. I was the field producer, and it was my first time but I didn't tell anybody.
Going forward, I knew I didn't want to be in another lower-level position. I wanted to be in a higher-level position, so I applied myself to get producer jobs. I had a friend that worked at Revolt who mentioned my name as a researcher and she referred me. I had an interview with the president of Revolt, and she loved me. I interviewed to be hired as the assistant to the president at Revolt, but in my interview, she saw that I had a master's degree. She asked, “what do you want to do?” I told her that I want to be a part of the creative team. I wanna be a producer.” I got hired to be the assistant to the president at Revolt, but I never got a call to come to work. The girl who was the original assistant hit me up and asked, “do you wanna be a producer?”
Of course, I said yes. They had just hired a new executive producer and she was looking to hire an associate producer. She called me for an interview. At the time, I was coordinating a movie with Iman Shumpert and Cynthia Bailey. I was in the middle of recording, while in the car interviewing at the same time. I left that show early because she hired me on the spot. I told her, I’d previously interviewed to be a producer on the Miss Pat Show, but they said I didn't have enough experience. When I interviewed with the producer at Revolt I told her, I don't want to hear that.
I don't have enough experience because in this world you tell us we don't have enough experience, but you're not giving us the opportunities to get the experience. You cannot tell me that I'm not qualified for this job based on experience because technically I have the knowledge and if you give me this opportunity, you will see that it was a great choice. That statement right there got me the job. I’m the Associate Producer of the talk show, Black Girl Stuff. It's been a blessing. I've learned a lot. I come from a scripted world, so when Revolt turns scripted, I'm going to be running it because I know what I'm doing.
I got here based on me being a risk taker and not being afraid to say, I know what I want. That doesn't mean I didn't have fear in the process. That means I don't have any other choice. I want people to understand that without fear, I did everything that needed to get done.
Keiyana: With such a busy schedule, briefly tell me what a day in the life of Porcherria looks like?
Porcherria: I'm up at 6:30 am, make my breakfast, and drink either my tea or coffee. I then get ready for work, in which we usually wear black because they're always filming and black doesn't appear easily on the camera. On my way to work, I'm either listening to the Millionaire Podcast or I'm talking to my best friend on the phone. Once I arrive at work we have multiple meetings where we discuss new ideas and new conversations for when we're interviewing people for the talk show.
By 10:30 am I’m in another meeting with our team and everybody's coming up with ideas for our co-hosts, who we want to interview, and coming up with questions for the people we're interviewing. Last year we had Ari Fletcher, Jacob Lattimore, August Alsina, etc. So we have to research and we come up with all these ideas. Tuesdays are our days of filming, and with a new season, we're prepping for the new year with a new set and coming up with new ads, which we have to pitch to the president of Revolt for approval. Most of the time I'm in my office researching, writing a script, or talking about how we're going to have the show run.
Now outside of being a producer, I’m also an influencer. So while I'm at work, I try to capture content, figure out what events I'm going to for the week or the weekend, and come up with a game plan. In between, I make sure to talk to my husband throughout my day. Now that my wedding has passed, I can focus more on how I'm helping myself, my community, and people that are creators like me. However, once I'm off work, I'm off. I have my little chill time after I have my meetings and then I watch TV because it's important for me to study. I study reality, scripted, non-scripted, and docu-series because I don't know where I'm going to land when it comes to helping people with their projects.
Keiyana: Being a businesswoman and a newlywed, how do you bridge that gap of work life balance? Do you have a routine? Do you have a schedule?
Porcherria: During the week we don't have a lot of balance because we can't. I don't know what time my husband is going to go to work or what time he's going to get off. The great thing is that we both understand the industry, so that's why we work so well together. During the week, we don't trip because we are okay with sharing our weekends or the hiatus that we get from work.
Sunday is like literally our day. No one can mess with a Sunday. We go on Sunday walks and we go on our little Sunday dates. It doesn't matter what nobody says, when I wake up, it's Joe. When I go to sleep, it's Joe. When we do get the time, we take those two weeks off work to travel if we can. For us, this is our balance right now because it's about working together, being partners to become millionaires, and living the lives that we want to live.
Keiyana: What are your aspirations in your career and life, for the next three years?
Porcherria: I got this from Beyoncé, but I'm going to say that my aspiration in life is to be happy. Happiness is different for so many people. I always need to put that at the forefront because it's scary. Life is scary. It's so much going on out there. It's so easy to be depressed. It's so easy to be sad. Ultimately, I'm always trying to keep a piece of happiness inside of me.
Since I work closely with Revolt black news I still hear and see things sometimes. But for my peace, I don't get emotionally attached to everything because it is so easy to have that drain you. Aside from being happy, my other aspiration in life is to live the life I always imagined I would live. I always felt like I was going to be successful. When I met my husband, the first thing I told him was, I'm going to be successful, based on my standards of success. A lot of people look at me and consider me successful, but it's so much more I could do.
I have many goals that I know I'm going to achieve. It's just taking time, and I am learning to be patient because slow and steady wins the race.
Keiyana: Since its Black History Month, tell me someone that has inspired your life and why.
Porcherria: Vaughn Butler, that's my mentor who passed away when I was in college. He's the reason why I'm here right now. He's the reason why I got into the industry and why I'm staying in the industry. When I was attending TSU, I knew that I wanted to be in this industry, but I just didn't know how I was going to do it. Vaughn Butler worked for Google, made 6-figures, and did a lot of different things in the industry on behalf of Black people and behalf of Texas Southern University.
When I finally got a chance to be next to him, that's who I clung to the most. Since I grew up without a father figure, he was the one who poured into me more than any other man. I learned a lot from him about digital media, social media, radio, TV, and film. Without him, I wouldn't have leaped. I grew up in the hood, so he would always tell me, “you have a poor person's mindset. You are always chasing the dollar and not chasing your dream. You are not going to get to where you want to go because you are holding yourself back. You allow your family to hold you back by wanting to take care of them, by wanting to stick around with them, and staying at home instead of leaving and getting out of that poor person mindset.”
Since that day, I've always vowed to stay out of that mindset, always do better for myself, take that leap, and not be afraid. Just because I can't see it doesn't mean it's not there for me. He is the most influential person in my life to date. When I have a kid his name will be honored in my kid's name.
Keiyana: That's beautiful. So tell me the significance of what being a black woman means to you.
Porcherria: The significance of being a black woman to me is instinct. Because we know a lot of things. Something will happen and we knew before it happened that it was going to happen. Not to say that men don't have these things, but women naturally are survivors.
I hold my team down in my workplace because it's my number one thing (outside of the home). I'm a big team player and a big leader. It's not just about me, it's always about us. I feel like that's what's so good about black women; we always want to keep the family together. We always want to make sure that everybody is comfortable, that they feel safe, that they feel protected, even when we don't feel protected, we want others to feel protected.
Keiyana: As we wrap up, tell our readers what they can look forward to seeing from you and where they can find you on social media.
Porcherria: Foundation First, I appreciate y'all. Thank you so much for having me. This year is going to be big. I have an Etsy shop where I make a lot of personalized items. I'm hoping to get a lot more clients from there. I'm starting my YouTube channel where I’m sharing my surprise wedding blog. I've dropped a couple of shorts already, but I'm starting that. I'm doing a couple of partnerships with other YouTubers and I have a lot of major partnerships coming up soon. I’m going to be doing a lot of motivating and talking about marriage, dropping marriage gems and how special it is-- because this is real and y'all need some real black love up in here.
I also have a lifestyle personal blog. I'm dropping gems from my job and everything. Subscribe to my blog if you want to learn more about the film industry and learn more about my travels I know a lot of people from Texas are going to be looking at this blog too. That's my hometown. Shout out to everybody from Texas, especially Houston. I hope that I get some more people from home to come out here to Georgia so that I can help them out.
Aside from that, we're producing a couple more projects coming February 21st, for Revolt’s Black Girl Stuff. Season 2 will be dropping on the Revolt TV app and on YouTube, which we only run for two weeks on YouTube and the app. So you'll catch my name as Associate Producer for season two. We got some special celebrity guests throughout the season. We got some people who haven't interviewed in a while and y'all are going to want to hear from them.
On behalf of Foundation First, we want to thank Porcherria for sharing her inspiring testimony!
Stay connected with Porcherria by clicking the links below.
YouTube: When Life Gives You Peaches