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The Grit and Grace Project: Redefining a Woman’s Strength

The Grit and Grace Project is a place for strong women and those who want to be. We understand that enduring life’s difficulty is not the same as transforming it which is reflected in all that we do. The Grit and Grace Project offers an online magazine, creates This Grit and Grace Life Podcast, as well as publishes books and ebooks with the goal of providing encouragement and inspiration to women. Through all products created, we find that embracing laughter, hope, grit, and grace amidst our highs and lows defines our true beauty and reveals our ultimate strength.

The Grit and Grace Life Believes….

  • Our identity is found in who we are, not what we do or the challenges we face.
  • We are diverse in talents and life roads, all equally and inherently valuable.
  • We find peace in living a life of grit and grace, applying each as needed.
  • Our unfading beauty is found in the strength of our character, the richness of life lived.
  • Abandoning perfection enables us to fulfill our purpose.
  • We are equal, not identical to men, and we delight in the differences.
  • Our strength is gained by walking through life challenges, not around them.
  • It is essential to give heartache the necessary time and attention to heal.
  • We learn the depth of grace as we choose to offer forgiveness even when it’s undeserved.
  • Our faith in a personal God frees us to find strength and purpose in all circumstances.

Grit determines that life challenges will not defeat or define us. Grace gives kindness to ourselves and others even when it’s hard.

Who we are


Darlene Brock

President and Co-Founder of The Grit & Grace Project and Co-Host of This Grit and Grace Life Podcast

Darlene Brock. Co-Founder and President of The Grit and Grace Project, Author, and Co-Host of This Grit and Grace Life Podcast left home at 18. Her first pay your rent job was a receptionist at a prestigious law firm, which she left to live in a Christian commune. As her life pendulum swung again, she took the job of running a summer camp and conference center before spending the next 20 plus years in the music business. One to always enjoy a new adventure, Darlene once para-glided off the Bavarian Alps with her two daughters; you just can’t put this lady in a box.

It was not long after leaving home at that young age; she realized embracing grit and grace were the traits that got her through many trials and triumphs. It was this realization that led her to launch her most recent venture, The Grit and Grace Project with co-founder and husband, Dan.

In addition to the podcast, “This Grit and Grace Life,” this organization currently produce a women’s online lifestyle magazine. Every element of The Grit and Grace Project, including their book publishing affiliate, was created to remind women that true beauty is found in a woman’s strength.

As Darlene embraced grit and grace to master the challenges in her life, she became inspired to write Raising Great Girls a book about how to raise confident and capable daughters, understanding that perfection was not required. Holding to the belief that a woman’s self-confidence and strength is best gained at a young age it was her goal to arm mothers with the tools they need to complete the job of raising great (but not perfect) girls.

Having two adult daughters, she understands that motherhood is not just one job, but it is many. To set any girl in your charge on a life course for potential success requires mastering a broad range of positions. In different seasons of a girl’s life. From Coach to Military Strategist, every mother takes on various responsibilities when embracing the title of mom.

Darlene has been featured on the Fox & Friends morning show, Focus on the Family and Family Life Today radio programs, and multiple ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX affiliates. She has been a featured columnist for CNN and written for numerous Family oriented magazines and websites.

It was in the busyness of producing award-winning music videos, managing music groups, promoting concerts and serving as COO of ForeFront Records that Darlene raised her two daughters. This unique blend of author, mother, businesswoman, wife, and creative producer has shown her that it is indeed true, “life challenges should neither defeat nor define you.” And just so you know, she wears the tool belt in her family.

Julie Graham
Julie Graham
Co-Host of This Grit and Grace Life Podcast, Social Media and Brand Manager, whose favorite quote is from Coco Chanel “Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself”

Born in Pennsylvania but raised in Southwest Florida, I’m a strong woman with an atypical upbringing. I was raised by my great-grandmother and became very independent at a young age. Early on, I learned to rely heavily on my strong will and humor to handle difficulties and push on toward my hopes and dreams.

My personal mantra is “be bold and just be you,” and I love encouraging other women to do the same. Now the Co-Host of This Grit and Grace Life podcast and Social Media and Brand Manager at The Grit and Grace Project, I have the opportunity to do so on an even larger scale, and I love every minute of it! I find I’m most comfortable in front of the camera or behind the microphone.

I’m a recent widow and boy mom to my son, Lincoln, so I have my share of struggles. But they have been beautifully intertwined with joy and life, and I strive to find the good in all things. It’s easy to look back and see how both grit and grace have marked my entire life. But remember, I’m winging it. My life, my eyeliner, motherhood, everything.

Ashley Engagment cropped more copy contributor
Ashley Johnson
Managing Editor she is often found gazing into the distance ruminating over the prose our contributors bring.

Ashley is married to Stephen, fur-mom to Yankee Doodle and new mom to baby Walker! Though she’s a self-proclaimed “total introvert”—her close friends and family are the treasures of her heart. This Indiana girl is an idealist who loves to see “the good” prevail, but also knows firsthand that life’s blows can be the perfect setting for a beautiful story. And boy does she love a good story; they have the power to change a person from the inside out. With that in mind, she edits each of our writers’ stories, relishing in their obvious displays of grit and grace.

Bethany Gilliland
Bethany Gilliland
Administrative and Marketing Assistant Bethany’s favorite quote is from Piglet in Winnie The Pooh, “The things that make me different are the things that make me.”

As a Tallahassee-lassie, I was born and raised in Tallahassee, Florida. I am a 20-something wife and full-time college student who will be graduating from Florida Gulf Coast University with a degree in Marketing. When I married my high school sweetheart, Wil, we moved to Southwest Florida to complete our degrees. I had to quickly learn how to navigate being a wife, a student, and an employee with grit and grace at a young age.

As a Marketing Major, The Grit and Grace Project has provided me with the opportunity to be blessed with a position in my field prior to my college graduation. I enjoy being able to apply what I am learning in class while simultaneously gleaning wisdom from my coworkers and pursuing my passion. This in itself is possibly my biggest career accomplishment as a goal-oriented individual!

I am excited to see what the future holds as I continue to grow professionally and build a life with my husband. Wherever I end up, I know that I will always carry the experience I’ve gained since becoming a part of the team at The Grit and Grace Project.

Meet the Rest of the Team
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