A Seat at the Table: Local kidpreneur has her eyes set on becoming the ‘Oprah of Cookies’

15-year-old Tamia Hawkins-Coleman has accomplished most of her entrepreneurial goals already -- and she plans to keep her foot on the industry’s neck.
Published: Feb. 23, 2022 at 5:47 AM CST
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FLORISSANT, Mo. (KMOV) - Most young teens are nagging their parents to teach them how to drive or searching for the perfect homecoming dress.

But 15-year-old Tamia Hawkins-Coleman has accomplished most of her entrepreneurial goals already -- and she plans to keep her foot on the industry’s neck.

Standing alongside your grandmother or parents while they cook seems like a stepping stone for all talented culinary connoisseurs and Tamia’s journey starts out the same. She reminisces on helping her grandmother make lasagna. Although she was constantly in the kitchen, her journey began a few years later.

During her childhood, Tamia’s mother Tamishio Hawkins took her to downtown St. Louis to help the homeless by providing them necessities like food, toiletries, and clothes.

“Being out there and seeing how people live without a place that they can call home,” Tamia added. “I knew I wanted to do something to help them.”

And just like that – Mia’s Treats Delight was created in 2015.

Combining their passion for baking and the curriculum Tamia learned in her gifted economics class, the mother-daughter duo began building their empire while aiming to combat homelessness and give back to the community.

“I told my mom I didn’t want to wait until adulthood to start my business. She always told me to be my own boss,” Tamia said, recalling how she launched her baking career at the age of 8.

With help from mentors, the pair curated their menu to include cookies, brownies, and cookie cake.

“A lot of my cookie flavors are customer requests that turned out really good so they were added to the menu,” the 15-year-old said. “When asked what her bestsellers are, Tamia states she is constantly whipping up her Cookies ‘n’ Cream, Turtle and Chocolate & Pecan cookies.

She jokes, “I can’t forget chocolate chips.”

Tamishio tears up while reflecting on what her business-savvy daughter has accomplished in 7 years.

“I always encourage her to be her own boss and start her own business as an adult,” the Florissant mom said. “I didn’t know she would come to me as an adult saying ‘Hey mom, I’m ready to start a business’.”

And her mother has a lot to be proud about.

In 2020, the young CEO landed on The Root’s Top 25 Young Futurists list. From art to corporate innovation, the list acknowledged 25 trailblazers who provided a blueprint for what leadership should look like. Tamia joined noteworthy youths like NBA legend Dwayne Wade’s child Zaya Wade and Grammy-winning artist Lil Nas X.

With several achievements under her belt, she dubs herself as the Oprah of Cookies.

“I get a lot of cookie orders. We based it off Oprah’s saying ‘You get a car’ but ‘it’s you get a cookie.’ Oprah’s journey, in general, is inspiring,” Tamia explains.

CEO and founder of Mia's Treat Delights pose with team members at the St. Peters store after...
CEO and founder of Mia's Treat Delights pose with team members at the St. Peters store after bringing her tasty baked goods to them.(Tamia Hawkins-Coleman)

She adds that she would love to have the philanthropist take a bite of her sweet creations. While she waits to bestow a baked good to Oprah, Tamia has had other noteworthy customers like St. Louis Mayor Tishuara Jones and Missouri Congresswoman Cori Bush. The young hustler even snagged her first international customer during a vacation in Paris.

Having their products line the shelves at Target has always been a dream for these ladies. So when a Target representative reached out to Tamia recently. They were elated.

“She was looking for black businesses and found mine. She said this is the perfect business to start off Black History Month,” Tamia said. “We delivered them to the [St. Peters] store and were greeted by a welcoming committee.”

Now that she has checked another goal off her list, Tamia hopes to snag a food truck or secure her first brick-and-mortar location to make her business more accessible. Although she doesn’t have a timeline set just yet, this teen has her eyes on the prize.

If you’re looking to try one of her signature desserts, click here.