Neomia Banks has been called a successful businesswoman, a pioneer, and a real go-getter. In fact, she has one very distinct characteristic that sets her apart from the rest.
The year was 1968 and Ms. Neomia Banks was on the scene. Born and raised in Goree, Texas, Banks made her move to Abilene right after high school. She attended college at Cisco Junior College, then McMurry University.
Next up, a 25-year career in insurance.
"I've always had an interest in business," Banks said. "Even when I was growing up I always knew I was going to be in some type of business; just didn't know what it was."
That business turned out to be a successful career as an insurance agent in this office on North 1st Street. Banks became the first black woman for State Farm in the State of Texas. Twenty five years later, in the same location, her business is still going strong.
"I always had this 'umph,' you have this 'umph' inside," Banks said. "That I can do what I want to do, when I want to do it."
Aside from her pride and joy, her family: a loving couple she knew as her mother and father, her biological mother, two daughters and three grandsons, she has a few other loves in her life -- her collectibles, which include beautiful angels, life-like baby dolls , and a large collection of her trademark hats.
"I've always loved hats, so I decided to wear them everyday, just because I could," she said.
Banks has lost count of the hats in her collection. There are almost 700 in the 'hat room' alone, she said.
"Someone will look and say, 'Is that Neomia?' but if I have my hat on, they know who I am."
Friends know her as friendly, active, determined and consistent.
"She is a very creative woman," said Floyd Miller, with the Abilene Black Chamber of Commerce. "She is one of the individuals we can always count on. Neomia certainly takes care of business."
"When i get up in the morning, I thank the Lord for me being able to get out of my bed," Banks reflected. "A lot of people didn't wake up. So my faith counts a lot in my life. I just wrap my arms around it, because He is so good all the time."
KRBC takes its hat off to Ms. Neomia Banks: a role model in the community, an accomplished businesswoman, and an inspiration for us all.