2021 40 Under 40 Honoree: Abraxis T. Blackwell
“Things that tear a lot of people down actually built me up.”
Abraxis T. Blackwell (37)
Vendor Manager and Assistant Vice President, Citizens Bank
Obstacles have always been motivators for Abraxis Blackwell.
“Things that tear a lot of people down actually built me up,” she says. Raised by her grandmother and father, she overcame adversity in her early years to obtain a bachelor’s degree and two master’s degrees as a first-generation college graduate.
Blackwell places a high value on education. “Growing up in my demographic, you can’t be what you can’t see. Going to college gave me a pathway out,” she says.
She gives back by mentoring high school seniors in career development and by teaching technical skills at the Community College of Allegheny County. She also volunteers with her 14-year-old son at the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank to serve as a role model for him. Blackwell eventually would like to secure a role in higher education, probably teaching business.
“People think the path to success is super secret. It’s really not,” she says. “It’s really consistency and determination.”