A Girl With Grit



“Archery is a magical sport, and made a positive impact on my life. It teaches careful discipline, quiet strength, and resolute determination.”

Kalena Daley has an indomitable spirit and is unconventional in her approach to life. Born and raised in the Eagle area, her favorite aspect of her hometown is the Greenbelt. “I love seeing nature incorporated with my neighborhood. My family would always go biking.” She attended TVMSC (Treasure Valley Math and Science Center) during junior high, then attended Capitol High School and Dennis Technical Educational Center. “Special shout-out to Ms. Skye Hetherington and Scott Weathers who made large meaningful impacts on me." Kalena was a wrestler throughout high school. "The sport is all about pushing past the mental limits you put on yourself. It’s taught me so much that I carry into my life.”

Kalena is taking a gap year after graduating in 2021and diving into the world of work, focusing on auto repair. She started out as a tire tech, trained as an oil tech and is working her way up to mechanic. “Every problem is just another puzzle to solve and each is a little bit different. Sometimes the answer is right in front of you but things keep getting in your way and you’ve got to get creative. There are a lot of things that you can't learn from books that you have to learn from experience.”

“I always loved cars. Their design, shape, size, and sheer power always amazed me. How air, fuel and spark create movement.”

“In high school we had a program called DTECH (Dennis Technical Education Center). I got to tour the facility my last year of junior high. Walking into bays with six foot lifts, tools lining the walls, seeing engine displays and demos lit my mind on fire. I took the class throughout high school. It was a great opportunity. I would recommend DTECH to anyone who is interested in what they offer–an introduction into a lot of trades.”

“My favorite car is probably a Suburu SVX. At the moment I drive a 2013 Dodge Charger, a car I’ve wanted since I was a kid. My dream car would be a r34 Skyline.”

“My advice to other women wanting to do mechanics is know your worth, realize you are valid. People are always going to doubt you. Find those who don’t.”

Kalena has been working with horses since she was five years old. She trained two of her own horses and also trained many other animals. Kalena did drill on bareback, learning liberty, a form of touchless communication with your horse.  Like other bad ass women like Mulan, Kalena learned mounted archery. Kalena received the highest score of any junior competitor in Washington in 2019.  One point short of a perfect run.  “Archery is a magical sport, and made a positive impact on my life. It teaches careful discipline, quiet strength, and resolute determination.”

Kalena turned 18 last July 31 and describes herself as “pretty bad ass, driven, intelligent, and confident. I can change and adapt to make myself successful in whatever circumstances might come up. I’m capable.”

“I’ve never had celebrity crushes or role models. I inspire myself.”

“You have just as much a right to success as anybody else. You don’t have to be perfect. You are going to make mistakes. You can be just as good as anybody else. There are going to be people who doubt you. You might doubt yourself. There are going to be haters. You have to gravitate towards people who are proud of you and who support you and want to see you do better.”

“I want to have people around me who I find inspiring, who bring out different sides of me, like my best friend, she’s amazing and makes me truly grateful for all that’s around me.”

Kalena loves traveling where “random human interactions” often occur. “People are amazing and awesome. You might be the difference in someone’s day. Be the good. Bringing light into every day is important whether for myself or somebody else.”

Kalena is not afraid of taking on challenges nor is she afraid of challenging others to reexamine their preconceived notions of what women and especially what this particular woman is capable of. “I am a person who is afraid of nothing. Anything the world throws at me I know I can handle.” 

Kalena is aware of “the looks of doubt, the skeptical words, the disbelieving minds of people who can’t comprehend what or who I am. I know I am being watched, observed, judged, on everything I do because of my appearance, my gender, my occupation. Everyday I put my best foot forward. I strive to do better than was ever expected of me. I look to achieve perfection in my work and myself. My fire blazes its own path. I step confidently, knowing I will get where I want to go. I am unconventional, unusual, sharply unique. I am a trailblazer.”

Kalena is someone who can inspire all of us to be both a little bit more bad ass and be the light.









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