Shontel Greene’s journey from the gritty streets of West Baltimore to becoming a powerhouse in the healthcare industry is nothing short of inspiring. As the multi-millionaire owner of NURSEZ US, the largest healthcare company in Maryland, and the proprietor of MTJF, More Than Just Friends, Shontel is completely revolutionizing adult healthcare services in the state.

Born and raised amidst the turmoil of the crack epidemic that plagued Baltimore in the late 80s, Shontel experienced firsthand the destructive impact of addiction. Despite the allure of the hustling lifestyle, she made a courageous decision to turn her back on crime and pursue a path of legitimacy. Today, she stands as a true “Boss Chick,” having earned degrees in biology, chemistry, and soon completing her PhD in Nurse Practitioner.

Shontel’s dedication to providing holistic care is evident in the services offered by More Than Just Friends Adult Medical Day Center, where patients receive not only medication therapy but also engage in enriching activities to enhance their mental and physical well-being. Her commitment to mental health awareness and home healthcare has positioned her as a trailblazer in both industries during Mental Health Awareness Month and Home Health Care Month.

With a heart for service and a determination to make a difference, Shontel Greene exemplifies resilience, vision, and compassion. Her journey from adversity to success serves as a beacon of hope for those facing challenges, showcasing that with hard work and dedication, anyone can rewrite their story and become a force for positive change in their community. In this interview, we delve into how her journey through addiction propelled her towards success in healthcare and entrepreneurship. 


Can you share with us the journey of transitioning from a background in the underworld of crime to becoming a successful multi-millionaire business owner in the healthcare industry? 

My journey was challenging because I had to completely change my mindset. Without any parental guidance, I had to teach myself right from wrong, which was incredibly difficult. Despite these obstacles, I knew that in order to achieve my goals, I needed to have faith in God, stay structured, focused, and work harder than anyone else. I trusted that the rest would fall into place.


What inspired you to establish Nursez R Us and More Than Just Friends? How do your businesses contribute to the community? 

What inspired me was my mother’s struggle with heroin addiction and her death from AIDS. Seeing how she was judged and treated poorly because of her diagnosis deeply affected me. Witnessing this, I decided to open a business that would change the approach to patient care and ensure that everyone, regardless of their diagnosis, is treated with equal respect and compassion. My business makes a positive impact on the community in several ways. We offer scholarships, feed the homeless, and organize health fairs. Our services help our patients enjoy a better quality of life. Every morning, they wake up feeling good about themselves because of the care we provide.


As someone who has experienced the effects of addiction firsthand, how do you incorporate your personal experiences into your work in mental health services?

I learned never to judge a book by its cover and came to understand that addiction is an illness. I made it a point to educate others and their families about the true nature of addiction and the importance of mental health, as well as how it impacts and interacts with addiction and mental illness. 

What challenges did you face while building your businesses, and how did you them? 

My most difficult challenges were turning negatives into positives and overcoming the lack of acceptance due to my past. I handled it by never taking no for an answer. I funded my business 100% and made sure my presence was known, ensuring that people had to accept me and what I stood for because there was no turning back. I host conferences, engage in community outreach, do public speaking, and use billboards to spread the word.


In what ways do you promote mental health awareness within your organizations and the larger community? 

I promote mental health awareness by educating myself to educate others. I do community outreach, peer performance groups, billboards, flyers. The biggest part of promotion is assessing the lack of knowledge. 


Can you elaborate on the services provided at More Than Just Friends Adult Medical Day Center and how they support the well-being of your patients? 

We are a one-stop shop for healthcare. We have medical doctors, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, podiatrists, speech therapists, and more. We offer field trips, pamper days, music therapy, and host events like balls. Most importantly, we give our participants and their families a sense of well-being. 


How do you balance your academic pursuits, particularly obtaining multiple degrees, with your role as a business owner and entrepreneur?

I stay organized by taking things one day at a time. I’ve learned to pace myself and not take on more than I can handle, most importantly I learned to become a great listener, understanding I’m never the smartest in the room.


As a prominent figure in the healthcare industry, what are your goals for the future of Nursez R Us and MTJF?

My goals for both businesses include continuing updating policies and procedures, advocation for fair patient care, regardless of diagnosis. I aim to enhance patient care by ensuring efficient continuity of care and providing a happy, healthy quality of life for all.


How do you maintain a sense of authenticity and purpose in your work, given your background and experiences?

I stay true to myself and others, proving wrong anyone who doubted my ability to achieve greatness. I do as a say. I don’t provide false hope. I take all the knowledge within to provide the best care regardless of the situation. When I don’t know, I ask for help.


Lastly, can you tell us about the significance of May being Mental Health Awareness Month and Home Health Care Month, and your contributions to raising awareness during this time? 

Honestly, working firsthand with mental health clients, every day should be a mental health focus. This is one of the hardest detected diagnoses. However, I will continue to educate, practice community outreach, advocate, and most importantly listen and assess where I am needed as a mental health professional.

Even at 50, I remain committed to learning, recognizing that my mind is my secret weapon that no one can take away. Honestly, I believe this message should be emphasized every day, given the immense need. I raise awareness by speaking out, listening to my participants, and striving to be the best advocate I can be. 


What is your definition of success? 

If I was asked this question 30 years ago my answer would have been riches; today at 50 with growth, I want to be the best I can be, and be successful in making a difference in others’ lives.


All in all, Shontel’s remarkable story underscores the transformative power of perseverance and passion. Her unwavering commitment to excellence in healthcare, coupled with her drive to uplift and empower those around her, sets her apart as a true leader and inspiration. Shontel’s journey serves as a testament to the fact that with determination, empathy, and a strong sense of purpose, individuals can overcome adversity and create a meaningful impact in the world. She is a shining example of the change that is possible when one person dares to dream big and work tirelessly to turn that dream into reality.

To learn more, follow Shontel on her Instagram: @shontel_greene 


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Shontel Greene