Please introduce yourself. What do you do? Why? What do you want people to know about you?
My name is Lynda Kana, I am originally from Africa, I was born in Congo, grew up in Burundi, Rwanda and lived in Uganda before relocating to USA. I have a social work degree, I am a full time certified medical assistant, I also am a certified medical interpreter, I work with Kentucky refugee ministries as their interpreter and translator on call, I speak 7 languages ( French, Kirundi, Swahili, Luganda, Kinyarwanda, Lingala and English), I taught English myself when I was in high school. I grew up speaking 4 languages ( Kirundi, Swahili, Kinyarwanda and French), it would just depend of the person I would be talking to and I would switch from one language to another one if I would be talking to two different people speaking different languages. I am a radio host at RadioLex, I have a show called « Proudly African » where I talk about Africa, I educate people about the beautiful continent where I am from. I also volunteer with refugee Congress as Kentucky refugee delegate. I have been extra in two movies (smoke mountain, I forgot the name of the other movie), I have done health care commercial with University of KY hospital, I have been an extra in Jeny’s bar commercial. I do modeling on call too. I have a website where I post my blogs talking about different stuffs. Before moving to America I was a radio host, radio voice over actress and a movie actress, I won two trophies of best actress of the year in 2011 and 2013 in an international film festival FESTICAB, the short movie I acted in won the best short movie of the year 2011 and International French Chanel bought it, when I won the best actress of the year in 2011, I got the opportunity to go in Belgium and attended cinema classes in Festival International des Films d’Amour de Mons. In 2013 I was the Youth ambassador with an NGO called PSI for 1year teaching youth how to avoid unwanted pregnancy and have protected sex to avoid STDs. I was the main voice over actress of Radio Isanganiro in Burundi. I worked with telecommunication company Africell and my voice was used as automated voice in Swahili, French and English.
What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?
I am so good at languages, I learn super fast and I am good at reading body language because of the training I got when I was in college doing my counseling degree. I am a go getter, super positive, I define any NO I get as Next Opportunity. When I fail I take it as a step back to jump further ahead. I call myself a FIGHTER and not a quitter.
Describe THAT moment when you realized you’re doing what you were born to do.
Back in 2016 I was coming from work, listening to the radio in my car and I heard a zouk song, I couldn’t believe my ears, because that was the very first time I hear Zouk on an American radio station. A week after that I was invited at a radio show, I then jokingly said : « what if they give me just an hour to do an African show… », later that week I received an email from the manager wanting to talk to me about the show. I couldn’t believe what was happening because working at a radio station is one of my dream jobs. I couldn’t believe that I was back on air after 2 years not being behind the microphone. I still get excited every Friday when I go to do my radio show. The other time was when I was seing myself on a building downtown. It had this modeling gig I did and the picture of me taken on set was featured on a building downtown and I remember looking at myself and saying this is just the beginning of living my dreams.
What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve had to go through and how did you grow through it?
The biggest challenge I have had to go through was when growing I didn’t have anyone to encourage me in anything, all I got was you will never be anything, you’re dumb, you will never make it in your life, and I was told all those words by the person who was supposed to be my back bone. As a child you need some kind of support and someone to push and pull you up, but I was all alone, so I had to inform my brain that if I don’t get myself up nobody will. Because all I got was discouraging me in all kind of ways, and I remember refusing to believe negative things I was told then, I would tell myself I will make it big in my life, I will be successful, I will be who I want to be, I had to keep my head up and keep working harder even if I was told on a daily basis I was nothing. When I was in 9th grade my mom got sick and was not able to afford to pay for my tuition, I had to find me a job which was not easy at all because in my country people wouldn’t hire a high school kid at all! And I needed a job to pay all my needs, from tuition, books, uniforms, shoes to pads. I remember going to apply for a voice over actress job and I told the manager : « ma’am give me one commercial, I will do it for free, if you like my voice then you will give me a job if not then it’s ok… », the lady used my voice for over a year with no single penny. I did not give up because I believed someday a door will open as long as keep on knocking, and my patience paid off, I became the main voice over actress of that radio.
Who are the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could elevate your career or business? Why these specific individuals?
I would love to meet Tyler Perry, I have watched every single movie he made and have read his history. He inspires me in so many ways. One of my biggest dream is working with him.
Viola Davis, I call her my other mother, I don’t know why I always feel like I am connected to her in some ways. She projects tenacity, strength and wisdom. Every time I see her, it makes me keep on moving on, she once said : « no matter how hard it looks like, if that’s what you want to do, keep fighting, don’t give up… ». Another dream of mine is working with her. And I hope she sees this someday. Viola something tells me you were my mom in another life and this is why I wanna be like you.
Taraji Penda Henson, her personality is just amazing, I feel like she is a big sister from another mother, I love her name Penda, it’s Swahili one of the languages I grew up speaking. Her acting talent is just amazing, I would love to meet her and hear how she shut all the negativity down when she decided to move to Cali with her baby boy. Because It Will feel so good to get to talk to someone who had to face everyone against them and kept moving on because she believed in herself and not what people said. I have been there I know how it feels like and I would love to get to sit down and talk to someone who kinda knows what it feels like when everyone turns their back on you.
Drop your social media links.