Ashley DarbySee Full Bio
Ashley Darby is an entrepreneur with a passion for hospitality, philanthropy and holistic health. As a Maryland native with a spicy personality, Ashley has been instilled with tenacity and an unmatched drive to succeed. The oldest child in her family, Ashley grew up juggling multiple jobs to help support her single mom and younger siblings. When she turned 18, she attended the University of Maryland and bartended on the side to keep both herself and her family financially stable. While bartending, Ashley was scouted by the Miss District of Columbia Pageant and went on to take the crown in 2011.
Soon thereafter, Ashley met Michael Darby, an Australian real-estate millionaire, who is 29 years her senior. Sparks flew, and Ashley was introduced to a world she never knew existed. After four years of dating, the couple married, and Ashley went from 22 and single to wife and stepmother of Michael’s 25- and 27-year-old children. Ashley is a certified yoga instructor and advocates that balance is about inner peace and outer physicality. Although she's having the time of her life, Ashley is working on how to balance love, family, business, along with new motherhood to her baby boy, Dean Michael Darby, with her husband, Michael.
Candiace DillardSee Full BioCandiace Dillard Bassett is a sassy and savvy 33-year-old former Miss United States born in Biloxi, Mississippi. She grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, with her Air Force physician parents and siblings, Chris and Crystal. At an early age, Candiace learned what excellence looked like from observing her parents, who worked in different facets of the medical field. A graduate of Howard University, she served a tenure in the White House Offices of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, where she liaised between the White House and the African American community for President Barack Obama. She later traded in her suit and heels for the campaign trail, where she served as a staffer for President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign. In 2013, Candiace won the crown and title of Miss United States and hasn’t looked back since. She has competed in the pageant industry for many years and holds top placements in the Sunburst, National American Miss, National Miss American Coed, Georgia Miss American Coed, Miss Maryland USA, Miss District of Columbia USA, and Miss United States pageant systems.
As an entrepreneur, she is the founder and CEO of Candiace Dillard Pageant Consulting, cofounder of Prima Hair Collection by Candiace Dillard, and co-owner of Chateau Salon Suites. In 2009, she also founded an organization called My Sister’s Keeper, a mentorship and women’s empowerment organization designed to give young girls the opportunity to interact with women in their communities. Candiace is married to her soulmate, restaurateur Chris Bassett, whom she met while they were both working at a restaurant in downtown Washington, D.C. They were friends for several years before the courtship blossomed into undeniable love, and Chris proposed to her with a surprise engagement, and now the couple is happily married. When she is not running her numerous businesses or being a pageant girl, Candiace can be found curled up with a good book, as reading is her favorite pastime. Close
Gizelle BryantSee Full BioGizelle Bryant is a vibrant socialite and resident of the Potomac area who effortlessly manages her jam-packed calendar as a single mother of three daughters, Grace and twins Angel and Adore. She was raised by very prominent and powerful parents who set the tone for her path with their work in government and philanthropy. After graduating from Hampton University, she moved to Baltimore, where she married megachurch pastor/activist Jamal Bryant. But when the marriage ended seven years later, this resilient woman decided it was time to move back to her old stomping grounds of Potomac for a fresh start with her three girls.
Gizelle keeps herself busy with multiple philanthropy projects and entrepreneurial ventures. She generates funds to revitalize various major cities in order to help those in need or in transition. Gizelle is committed to working hard and sees every obstacle as an opportunity. She has had a successful launch of her cosmetics line, EveryHue Beauty. The hero product of the line is a tinted moisturizer that is geared to meet the needs of every woman of color. EveryHue is currently sold in the mass market retail space. She has also added author to her title as she released her first novel, My Word, in 2019. Gizelle maintains her status as a sophisticated woman in the Potomac social scene, and with her outspoken, no-nonsense demeanor, she is embracing settling down once again. Close
Karen HugerSee Full Bio
Karen Huger is a pillar of strength and a force to be reckoned with. She grew up in Virginia on a large family farm that has been in her family for more than 100 years. Karen witnessed her father succeeding through hard work and perseverance, and she took her strong family values and followed her heart, living life to the fullest while achieving many successes. She attended the University of Virginia. She is applying her entrepreneurial spirit in various beauty, fashion, and lifestyle ventures, and she reigns supreme as the grande dame of Potomac.
Karen successfully launched her signature fragrance, La’Dame by Karen Huger which has appeared in Bloomingdales retail stores throughout the United States. Her fragrance now sells on HSN, an online and free-to-air television network. In addition, she recently launched her successful wig line collaboration, La’Dame X RPGSHOW by Karen Huger. Equally as important to Karen is her commitment to giving back to her community. She is an advocate and ambassador for Promoting Awareness Victim Empowerment (PAVE) and the Alzheimer's Association. Karen also serves as vice president on the board of directors for Felicia‘s Fund. She uses her public speaking opportunities to empower women, enabling healing and positive change. Above all else, her family comes first, and she is extremely proud of all that she has accomplished with her husband, Raymond, of 24 years, and her beautiful children, Brandon and Rayvin. In her spare time Karen can be found exploring her healthy mind, body and soul journey.
Monique SamuelsSee Full Bio
Monique Samuels has proven that she isn’t afraid to speak her mind and that she is driven by her passion to stand up for what she believes in. As an entrepreneur, wife, mom, and philanthropist, Monique is out to prove women can have it all. Monique grew up in Pleasantville, New Jersey, with her close-knit family. She grew up a tomboy, and her father instilled a sense of strength and independence into her. When Monique was a teen, her father would not let her drive a car until she knew how to change a tire and check under the hood. Growing up, she was taught very early on to be strong, persistent, and independent.
Monique was the salutatorian of her high school graduating class. After graduation, she moved to Pittsburgh to attend Duquesne University on a full academic scholarship. After a few semesters, Monique decided to pursue her true passion, a career in music. She packed her bags and moved to Washington, DC where she met her future husband, Chris Samuels, a six-time Pro Bowl left tackle who played for the Washington Redskins. Chris and Monique’s friendship has blossomed into a marriage of eight years and their beautiful seven-year-old son, Christopher, four-year-old daughter, Milani, and one-year-old son, Chase. Monique is a boss in every sense of the word, as she manages businesses, including, a real estate investment company, a business enterprise, and the Chris Samuels Foundation, which she and her husband share. As if that weren't enough to keep her busy, her entrepreneurial spirit has led her to create and launch her brand, Not for Lazy Moms, and the associated website notforlazymoms.com. In 2018, Monique launched her Not for Lazy Moms podcast, which further addresses topics that everyone can relate to but are rarely discussed. Monique’s desire to make a difference and help others is fueled by the love and support of her family.Close
Robyn DixonSee Full Bio
Baltimore native Robyn Dixon is the epitome of "You can’t keep a good girl down!" She graduated from the University of Maryland, where she earned a degree in business marketing. While Robyn was in high school, she met Juan Dixon, a star athlete at a rival school. In what turned into a whirlwind romance, Robyn and Juan became high school sweethearts, attended college together, and eventually married. Juan went on to become a professional basketball player; the couple settled in Maryland and had two talented, athletic sons. However, being married to an athlete was not easy, and when Juan broke her heart, the couple decided to part ways. Juan now works as a coach at a local university, and after remaining extremely close and living together under one roof, Juan and Robyn have found a romantic spark and renewed commitment to their family.
A full-time mom of two active sons, twelve-year-old Corey and ten-year-old Carter, Robyn successfully maintains a balance between family, work, and fun. In true entrepreneur fashion, Robyn splits her time between her real estate investing business, her event management business, and most recently, her new fashion accessory business, Embellished. Robyn focuses her philanthropic endeavors on causes benefiting women, children, and families.
Wendy OsefoSee Full BioDr. Wendy Osefo is the essence of a Renaissance woman— professor, political analyst, and entrepreneur. As a Maryland native, Nigerian-born Wendy joins the ladies of The Real Housewives of Potomac this season. With her strong personality, she knows how to hold her own and speak her mind when it comes to standing up to the other ladies.
Wendy’s life and upbringing embody the ultimate immigrant journey. Growing up with a single immigrant mother who put herself through college, Wendy learned first-hand the value of hard work and never thought of excuses or failure as options. Now an award-winning Nigerian-American television personality and progressive political analyst, she is on a quest to fulfill her insatiable appetite to succeed and obtain the American dream. Wendy received a Bachelor of Arts from Temple University, a Master of Arts from The Johns Hopkins University, a Master of Science from Rutgers University, and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from Rutgers University, where she made history by becoming the first black woman to earn a PhD in Public Affairs/Community Development.
Wendy is also a philanthropist who has sought to give back by supporting the next generation of leaders as the founder and CEO of the 1954 Equity Project, LLC, which provides tools, mentorship, and resources to underrepresented minorities to help them thrive in higher education. Wendy is currently a professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Education specializing in urban education and politics. Prior to joining the faculty at The Johns Hopkins University, Wendy served as the Director of Family and Community Engagement for President Barack Obama's antipoverty initiative, DC Promise Neighborhood Initiative. When she is not busy traveling to exotic destinations or on date nights with her hubby, Wendy loves to cook for her family. Wendy also has a penchant for interior design and hopes to start her own home essentials line in the future.
Wendy has been married for nine years. She and her Nigerian husband, attorney Edward Osefo met as teenagers, were friends for several years before making it official after graduating college, and have been together ever since. They have three beautiful children together, seven-year-old son Karter, five-year-old son Kruz, and the newest addition to the family, newborn daughter Kamrynn. Close