We reached out to some of our favorite entrepreneurs and asked them to think back and tell us about how they decided to start a business. Check out their responses below.

John Jaxheimer | Co-Founder & Creative Director, Le Beau

Co-founding the creative agency, Le Beau (if you can include as a link that would be ideal – https://lebeau.nyc/ ) in 2017 was driven largely by the shifting landscape as it related to the relationships between agencies and brands. At the time there was a move away from the AOR(agency of record) model towards project-based work for a variety of reasons – big brands realized their businesses required more specialized work with the accelerated relevance of social platforms and digital media while a massive number of start-ups didn’t have the budgets(or need) for a full time agency. Read more>>

Rebecca Gaut | Owner & Artist

From a young age I have always wanted to have my own business. I come from a family of entrepreneurs so it was something I always wanted to do and felt like a natural path for me to take. I love the idea of taking control of my own schedule and never having to ask for a day off. Being a mom has also always been a top priority. After having my two girls, a flexible schedule became a necessity for our family. Sometimes this means I put in the work while they sleep but the flexibility of making my own schedule is something I don’t think I will ever want to give up. Read more>>

Zoe Osborne | Interior Design, Curator, Poet, Founder of Mahogany Culture

I started Mahogany Culture because of a desire to connect with other Caribbean people in Toronto without the pressure of there being a singular narrative of what a Caribbean person talks and acts like. I didn’t fit in to any of the existing communities that I found and I want to create space to ‘feel at home in a metropolitan city’. Too often the Caribbean identity is limited to Jamaican dialect, sunny beaches, Jamaican patties and palm trees. I wanted to create a space that broke free from that and instead explored each individuals expression of self. Read more>>

W. Devin Cobb | Sports & Entertainment REALTOR® + CEO of White Glove Notary Network, LLC

I became a REALTOR® in 2005 and have worked as a Broker Associate in South Florida since 2013. In 2020, residential real estate markets across the country experienced a surprising surge of buyers, and despite COVID bringing the rest of the world to a standstill at that time, home sales still needed to close. At that time, title companies and real estate attorneys leaned heavily on mobile notaries to facilitate mobile and remote closings from just about anywhere that people could safely meet: Read more>>

Shayla Jones | Event Decor/Balloon Decor

The thought process behind starting our own event decor/balloon decor business, was that we are creative minds and we wanted to explore or shall I say dive in more into our creative side. At all the family events and parties my mother and I were the decorators. My mother is a hustler lol, she has multiple businesses. But she saw something in me that I didn’t focus on myself, and she brought me alone to start A little bit of this, A little bit of that LLC. We literally are talented and offer a little bit of this and that. Read more>>

Christine Herrera | Owner of Olienna Home

The most important job and the one I am most passionate about is raising our two girls, Olivia and Sienna. My first job, however, was as a physical therapist. I practiced for 13 years, after graduating with my Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Emory University. In the beginning, my role as a therapist was very hands-on, and on a daily basis I was working and interacting directly with patients. Quickly my role transitioned into a managerial one and as Director of Rehab, my level of responsibility grew exponentially. Read more>>

Jessika Angarita | Co-Founder PACTA

I realized that giving my time, knowledge, and energy to companies that did not value what I was bringing to the table was unfair. On several occasions, I had managers that constantly doubted my experience and track record because I was young. They ignored my opinions, even though they were based on years of work, and would trust people older than me who had less experience. Read more>>

Bob Bonnen | Music Man (singer, guitarist, harmonica)

Becoming a musician was a happy accident of sorts. I was going through a divorce and depressed. i only knew a handful of songs at the time. I heard of an audition for a strolling guitarist at Kaleidoscope restaurant in Coconut Grove. I was terrified at the thought of performing in public, but thought being scared might be a step up from being depressed, so I went to the audition not intending to get the job. I was the only one who showed, which was even scarier, and after playing one song they hired me. My depression morphed into a daily fear that I would be fired for being a fraud. I practiced, learned new songs and got better. Depression cured, new career. Read more>>

Willie Walker | Private/Personal/Traveling Chef & Mixologist

Honestly, after being let go from the last job I decided to to not let anyone have that much control over my livelihood working to barely make ends meet. Why not wake up every day doing something you love? What I love to do is make people happy and smile from within and I do that through my eclectic array of flavors. If I can make your taste buds dance then I know you are smiling from within. Food is life🍴 Read more>>

Ginger Cochran | Art Director & Curator

I began my business after realizing there were no artist opportunities for individuals like myself. Let me explain: I’m a self-taught artist, so resources and opportunities that may be available for those who have trained/apprenticed, received a degree or had personal relationships with industry leads, were not readily known to me. I wanted to create a company that provided not only opportunities for artists at any point in their career, but also the exhibition experience they were looking for and deserved. Read more>>

Felix Jorge Reynoso, MA, MBA-HC | Co-Founder, Chief Operating Officer

Flamingo BBQ began simply as a passion project for my wife and I. Born and raised in Hialeah, FL, we both loved every aspect about grilling and knew we wanted to put our stamp on the BBQ industry, but we were not exactly sure how to go about it. During the pandemic, however, we began grilling more and more and realized that generic BBQ sauces, while good, lacked the flavors and spices that we, as second-generation Cubans Americans, love on our food! This sparked an idea and after months of brainstorming and careful consideration, Flamingo BBQ Co. was born. Read more>>

Dan Cline | Midwest Tourism Advocate

I grew up traveling and experiencing different parts of the country – it was something woven into my genes from both my parents! After starting my own family and going on similar vacations – I noticed we were typically asking questions about our trip: Where should we go? Where should we stay? On top of these questions – we were noticing that the Midwest (my home) is typically forgotten or passed over in the world of tourism. It grabs particular stereotypes and it shouldn’t! The Midwest (as a whole – covers basically 12 states) has some of the most beautiful parts of the country! Read more>>

Patty Perera | Personal Coach

My thought process for starting up my own health and fitness coaching business was simple. I wanted to help people. I teach, guide, and help people understand that through bettering their food choices, improving their relationship with food, and making movement and strength training a priority, they will feel empowered to take control over their health and body and feel good. I believe building a strong foundation centered around daily habits is the key to long lasting results and success. Our daily actions determine the trajectory of our lives. And I’m here to help my clients through it. Read more>>

West Lamy | Play-by-play announcer & WORLDWIDEWEST columnist

I evaluated moreover researched the best way to cover Florida and global sports with an artistic voice, maintaining the moment to find out how I can share my passion for sports factually as a journalist. Leading for my force behind WORLDWIDEWEST coming from sports extended throughout, connecting and involving the entire world, and that is what we love to share. We are all about writing and creating videos for interactive content relating to the topic discussed. Read more>>

Dewayne IamDameechi Goffe | Dancehall, Rap recording artist, Actor, Model and Entrepreneur

My thought process behind starting my own business was simple, I don’t like to work for others so In order to be my own boss I had to start my own business. Read more>>

Nicole Lawson | Singer, Actor, Mompreneur

When I decided to form my own LLC in 2009, I did it strictly out of my own need to provide for my daughter and my strong desire to be as present for her as possible. I was newly divorced and now a single mother of one. I had no desire to have daycare raise her, but I also knew I was going to have to work twice as hard to care for her. I wanted to continue working in way that was aligned with my life’s call. I didn’t have all the answers, I just knew that becoming a full time Mompreneur was right for me. Read more>>

Marieme Konare Diagne | Entrepreneur & Flight Attendant

Growing up in a Senegalese home in Brooklyn, it was very customary for us to shower with exfoliating scrubs, and moisturize our skin daily with Shea Butter. Throughout high school I made lot of scrubs in my mothers kitchen using everyday things such as brown sugar, honey, and lemon. When I moved to Miami for college I was limited to the resources I had being that I was now in a different cultural environment, so I continued to make those products in my dorm. Read more>>