Kujuanna A. Ray is the founder and owner of U Me Paint – an upscale therapeutic environment that allows everyone to unleash their inner artist. Customers enjoy a relaxed atmosphere and create a colorful masterpiece with the guidance of experienced local artists. U Me Paint is Saginaw’ s newest experience! Customers can enjoy a solo experience for a little “ ME Time” or bring some friends! A little Paint! A little wine! Step out the box for an unforgettable good time, book a private party for corporate team building, networking events, birthday celebrations, Girls’ Night Out, date night, wedding showers, baby showers, school field trips, fraternity/sorority functions, therapeutic sessions for mental and emotional health, and more. It’ s Fun! It’ s Creative! It’ s for U! It’ s for Me!
Ms. Ray began her life’ s journey toward entrepreneurship in Saginaw, where she was born to Sheila Ray and Myron Thompson. Her village included teachers and administrators from Salina and Morley Elementary Schools, South Middle, Arthur Eddy, Arthur Hill and Buena Vista. She gives credit to the diverse experiences she had living and/or playing in all Saginaw neighborhoods, including the South Side, North Side, East Side, Bridgeport and Buena Vista. Kujuanna is proud of her Saginaw roots and believes that Saginaw is a nesting ground with unlimited potential. She has returned to Saginaw after many years in the corporate world, to raise her twin sons, Myles and Myron Murray, in the nurturing environment that influenced her in many positive ways.
“Saginaw is the hub for brilliance and the land of opportunity.”
Kujuanna believes that art is a way of expressing one’ s emotions. She grew up with her brother Myron, who tended to act out her emotions for her. When he was violently murdered, she was forced to address her emotions without his assistance. As children, they were inseparable. They often dreamed of collaborating to meet the needs of people in the Saginaw community. Myron often told Kujuanna to stay away from “ dream killers”. She took his advice when she moved back to Saginaw, despite recommendations from some of her friends to launch her idea in a more metropolitan area. Kujuanna was determined to give back to the community that means so much to her. The process has not been easy, but she believes that God has called her to bless the Saginaw community with U Me Paint. She credits her strength and perseverance to her faith in God. Ms. Ray’ s spiritual roots run deep in the community, having grown up in the New Mount Calvary Baptist Church under the leadership of her grandfather, the late Pastor M.T. Thompson. Later, she attended Coleman Temple COGIC, prior to moving away to attend college. She was raised to love the Lord and be a servant of God, and she is teaching her sons the same lessons. She graduated from Buena Vista High School and Oakland University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Human Resources with a Labor Relations minor. While working in corporate America, she was introduced to the Paint & Sip Industry. As a human resources specialist, she began to conceptualize various ways that employers and employees could benefit from a place that could be used by teams to mix and mingle, foster employee engagement, as a form of team building as well as providing creative therapeutic stress relief (knowing that stress is the #1 reason for low productivity, low employee morale, and poor attendance). Her entrepreneurial spirit kicked in and U Me Paint was born!
Kujuanna is the recipient of the prestigious Souper Award from the —- and was featured on Soul Issue hosted by Linda Holoman, and in the Saginaw News. She is excited about the encouragement and support that she has received from the Saginaw community, as she works to fulfill her purpose – to improve the quality of life for people in the Saginaw community. She often states, “ Saginaw is the hub for brilliance and the land of opportunity.” Kujuanna is a member of St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church where she serves in the Women of Excellence Ministry, and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Visit U Me Paint Experience at 316 south Hamilton in “old town” Saginaw. For more information call 989.79.color (26567) or visit umepaint.com