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July 2024 Mag

June 27, 2024

Encore Leadership: The Journey to “What’s NEXT?”

The Connector
Executive Coach Extraordinaire
Mom, Wife, Sister, Grandma, Soror and Friend

Jylla Moore Tearte, Ph.D. is a gifted leader who epitomizes the mantra to “lift others as you climb.”  Even for this article, her focus shifted our usual approach from introducing the bio of our cover model to exploring strategies and techniques using her Cerese D Jewelry story to connect people of partnership and collaboration.  This is conference season for many of our clients and Dr Jylla immediately came to mind for our feature story.  Be it attendance at the Zeta Boule or the Omega Conclave, she is ready to engage opportunities to connect with her Cerese D Jewelry as the conversation starter.

Angela Crane Jones

Jylla is wearing a Lapis Necklace from our One of A Kind Collection.

In the beginning

Dr. Jylla first met Deborah Dolman, VP of Business Development of Cerese D Jewelry, at an Odyssey Network Conference during the startup days of the business.  As she admired the luxurious, one-of-a-kind statement pieces, a conversation was orchestrated by mutual friend Cheryl Walker Robertson.  It was the moment that led to many crossroads on their future journeys.  The memory of the special feeling of connecting spirits that sisters immediately recognize was cemented by their mutual appreciation for quality and the beauty of a unique, statement piece. 

As a former Vice President at IBM responsible for assignments in sales, operations, reengineering and global business partners, Dr. Jylla’s mindset continues to immediately envision the opportunity to make mutually beneficial connections.  She finds that using a statement piece of jewelry as a conversation starter often breaks down the barrier of uncertainty of how to approach a new contact in a room where introverts struggle with the adrenaline necessary to socialize, while extroverts find themselves having a ball.  The mere touch of a Cerese D creation can signal, “Showtime!”   

The Journey Continues…

Upon becoming an entrepreneur, Dr. Jylla continued to stay in touch with the evolution of Cerese D Jewelry.  From having spent time visiting Deborah and Cerese, her daughter, at their initial business location in West Midtown Atlanta to a recent visit at their beautiful new location in Cobb County Atlanta, the years in-between strengthened their relationship.  Walking through their new headquarters’ office felt as though it was a museum of the history of Cerese D and the ongoing journey.  For Dr. Jylla, a Cerese D piece of jewelry elevates an individual’s sense of being and exudes confidence and elegance that often is called upon in challenging situations.  She states, “I am really looking forward to sharing the conference room space for a gathering of sisters.”

Opportunities to Reflect…

The Smithsonian National Museum for African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, DC was the perfect backdrop for an evening of elegance to wear and showcase Cerese D Jewelry in 2016 on opening night at the Museum.  Dr. Jylla who had been appointed as the 2020 Centennial Commission Chair for Zeta, thought of the partnership and collaboration skills learned from her mentor, Dr. Dorothy I. Height, NCNW President and CEO, as she walked through the Museum.  A seed was planted for Zeta’s Centennial Founders’ Day to be inclusive of Cerese D Jewelry. 

Four years later, as Zeta celebrated their Founders’ Day at a special evening at the NMAAHC, an innovative and unique partnership with Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.  and Cerese D Jewelry had been formed.  Zeta invited Cerese D Jewelry to partner with the sisterhood to create three (3) limited edition, numbered Centennial sets of jewelry.  Zeta Visionaries who were able to obtain the Zeta Centennial Collection pieces immediately bought out the “Centennial Collections” while experiencing the joy and personal confidence of owning Cerese D Jewelry statement pieces.  

From this vision of shared legacy that birthed the collaboration with Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. and Cerese D Jewelry, she was proud to personally gift her Zeta legacy daughter, Anjylla Foster, with these three exclusive collectibles. Pause.  The moment of reflection… this story of Deborah’s daughter, Cerese, and Dr. Jylla’s daughter, Anjylla, highlight their shared mutual passion for engaging legacy, nurturing cherished relationships and creating special memories. 

While the Centennial Collection is truly a treasured collectible, it was also a major contributor to Zeta’s fund-raising initiatives to celebrate the 2020 Centennial.  As International President for the Sorority from 1992-1996, she now completes duties as assigned by the current International President and CEO, Dr. Stacie NC Grant.  President Grant was the Undergraduate Vice President during Dr. Jylla’s “World-Class Service” administration.  Another full circle LEGACY moment of JOY that continues to elevate the bond of relationships, because she too cherishes Cerese D Jewelry statement pieces as Zeta collectibles and partnership opportunities. 

Intentional JOY…

The threads of this article are stories of Intentional JOY.  The examples shared serve to frame who Dr. Jylla is as an “Encore Leader”, the storyline of her dissertation.  With a passion to help people find “What’s Next?”, the story continues.  Recently landing at the Atlanta airport, she immediately observed a display case that invited passengers to visit the Cerese D Jewelry location at gate B29.  It was a moment of “intentional joy” to witness the continued innovation and creativity in building a brand while giving travelers around the world the opportunity to experience the brand.

As an executive coach and consultant, exploring, discovering and living what brings joy is paramount to navigating the journey of life.  Whether in a corporate role, an entrepreneur, an influencer, a creator or a fund raiser/philanthropist, creating space to connect puzzle pieces that put a smile on a face and a special tinge of love in the heart continues to be very special.  Dr. Tearte, 20th International President and Senior President of Zeta, is the CEO of Crystal Stairs, Inc., the Encore Leadership Community, and Co-Founder/COO of the Tearte Family Foundation.   Finding joy in being parents, grandparents and avid travelers, she and her husband, Curtis, have spent time on all seven (7) continents, from safaris in Africa to walking among penguins in Antarctica.  So, the question arises…

What’s Next?

Continuing her passion for “helping Encore Leaders transform their time, talent and treasure into a legacy that matters so that they can impact the world”, stays on the radar.  Working with people who have been successful and they now want to explore, discover and live “What’s Next?” energizes her daily walk.  Awakening childhood passions in order to pivot to becoming storytellers, authors, artists, builders, mentors, coaches, healers, servant leaders, philanthropists and humanitarians is the assignment for her life.  Visit to connect with Dr. Jylla and the Crystal Stairs, Inc. Encore Leadership Community.

In the meantime… on the drawing board is designing her Cerese D Jewelry Statement Piece for Boule 2024 and the Omega Conclave. “I THINK I’ll call it, ‘INTENTIONAL JOY!’

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