B-day surprise: Conway student, 501 LIFE share something unique

Fourth-grader Nikoria Williams holds the inaugural edition of 501 LIFE, which published on the day she was born. (Mike Kemp photo)

Conway fourth-grader Nikoria Williams and 501 LIFE have something unique in common. They both have the same birthday.

The magazine is celebrating its 10th anniversary with publication of its May 2018 edition. 501 LIFE was launched on April 21, 2008, during a special event in Downtown Conway.

On the same day the magazine launched, Nikoria, now 10, was born in Pine Bluff. She has lived in Conway since the second grade.

“She was 5 pounds and 7 ounces,” said her mom, Nina Page. “She was very small and had coal black curly hair.”

501 LIFE contacted Heather Kendrick, communication specialist for the Conway Public Schools, to identify any students who shared the magazine’s birthday. Of the 10,001 students in the Conway School District, there were about 40 with birthdays on April 21 but only one with the exact birthdate as the magazine.

Nikoria is a student in Mark Cuddy’s class at Marguerite Vann Elementary School. Math is her favorite subject. 

When not at school, Nikoria enjoys playing outside and explained it is her favorite thing to do. “Nikoria likes to dance and draw,” said her mom. “She’s a beautiful person, funny and outgoing.”

Nikoria’s brother, JaCoreyen Williams, is 13 and attends Carl Stuart Intermediate School.

Nikoria has seen copies of 501 LIFE before, but this is her first time to be featured in a magazine, something she and her classmates described as “pretty cool.”

“Nikoria came home all excited that she was the only one in the district to share the birthday,” said her mom.


Sonja Keith
Co-owner 501 Advertising and Publishing/Publisher of 501 LIFE

A native of New Iberia, La., Sonja is a graduate of Hartman High School (Johnson County) and Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia. Sonja is active in the community, serving on various boards and committees including the Conway Regional Women’s Council, the UCA Reynolds Community Council and the Faulkner County Council on Aging. A daughter of Mary and Stan Clinesmith of Conway, she has three younger sisters, Tricia, Stacey and Lori. Sonja and her husband, Tom, have four grown children – James, Emily, Laura and Joe. The family attends Grace United Methodist Church in Conway.

Sonja Keith