There are so many factors that affect how our lives turn out, but one of the most interesting is how our backgrounds give us unique strengths and perspectives that affect who we are as adults. We asked rising stars from the community to tell us about their background and upbringing and how they feel it’s impacted who they are today.

Alexandra and Alexey Minkin-Dugarte | Digital Creators from Un Par de Ales

As a couple in a multicultural marriage, our backgrounds, cultures and nationalities have had a huge impact in our lives. I (Alexandra) was born in Caracas, Venezuela, and my husband Alexey was born in Menzelinsk, Russia. Even though these two countries and traditions are far from similar, we were both raised in the world and culture of dance, so merging our lives and accepting each other was not as complicated as one can imagine. Ballet has offered us the possibility to tour the world from a very young age, and to have had the opportunity to visit so many different countries while doing what we loved was one of the most challenging, Read more>>

Bouquet Kramek | Portrait Photographer

I am originally from Bangkok, Thailand, which is rich in culture and history…also known for great food! My family was a strictly conservative family and wanted me to do well in school, go to college, and get a stable job with a reputable company. I did most of it but I had a different concept of my life after graduating high school. I started as a manager of a dance group, that is how I got more involved in event and portrait photography. Read more>>

Jane Lawton Baldridge | Creative

I am from a small coastal town in Texas. My life has been water based. Working at a boatyard and racing sailboats early on, then continuing a pattern of racing and boat deliveries throughout my journey. My story is that of a sea level girl who feels the salt water in her veins every day. Perfection is having the bow cut through the wavelets like a hot knife through ice cream. Surrounded by diamonds, glinting off of the wrinkles on the water. Intoxicated by the fragrance of the sea breeze. Read more>>

Teyler Leigh | Musician & Entrepreneur

I’m from Dallas, TX. I feel like the way I was raised prepared me to take on life really well. I always can remember my mom always telling me that I could be whatever I wanted to be and to do whatever I wanted to do. That definitely stuck with me and shaped me into the person I am today. Read more>>

hushmoney | Dj & Producer

Ok so I’m from France, i used to play in France and Italy a lot, used to play for the Royal family of Jordania too, i travel a lot for djing and it was an exellent school of life to see different cultures and tastes… it help me a lot for my work and also for my personal life! Read more>>

Tetiana Zverieva | Owner, Lash Educator, and Lash Professional

I was born and raised in Ukraine, I was working in a bank there and it was just very boring. I decided I wanted to try to get into the beauty industry, because I loved doing makeup, and was a makeup artist as a hobby. My boyfriend and I decided to move to the U.S. for better opportunities. Before I left, I researched what type of beauty services were most popular in America, because I loved doing makeup but I also wanted to see what else was out there in the beauty industry. I landed on eyelashes. Read more>>

Carlos Enis | Model & Entrepreneur

I was born in Berkeley, CA and was raised in Southern California. My background heavily impacts who I am today, as well as the goals I have set for myself. My mother is a single parent who raised my brother and I on her own, while working two jobs and earning a Bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley. My biggest influences growing up were all driven independent women who made ends meet on their own, while raising multiple children. My grandmother (mom’s side) immigrated from Mexico to Southern California and worked several jobs to provide for her four children, which she also raised on her own. Watching these women care for their children, struggle through multiple jobs, and still be able to make miracles happen is the reason why I expect so much of myself. Read more>>

Anabell Villanueva | Speaker, ESG Consultant, and Intuition Facilitator

It’s not about where you came from but how persistent you are with your vision. All that I lived brought me where I currently am as an entrepreneur of my brand called Anabell Intuition (Intuicion in Spanish), but my modest origin never defined the size of my dreams. Great endeavors are possible because we are resilient enough to sustain our vision until it becomes a reality. The truth is that at the beginning the vision is not that clear and as you transit that path you start to see it clearer, so you need to trust yourself to do the leap of faith. Read more>>

Cindy Burke | Creative Director-Fresh Bambu

I was born in Jamaica, West Indies; but came to America as a young girl. My background and upbringing has impacted my work ethic in a positive way. My Caribbean heritage strongly believes hard work & resilience. Read more>>

Jhony Luna | Visual Artist

I was born in Caracas – Venezuela, residing in Valencia – Carabobo state since I was 7 years old, I am an advertising professional and worked as a creative director in my Advertising Agency Design and Advertising Ocre, and since 16 years ago I decided to change my life and take my knowledge as a creative to my other passion ART and be a plastic artist today identifying my tendency as a POP FIGURATIVE. Read more>>