Ideas aren’t everything, execution matters greatly, but starting often requires an idea and so we asked folks to think back and tell us the story of how they came up with the idea for their businesses. We’ve highlighted some of our favorite stories below.

Christina Manso | Designer

I came up with the idea for Fete.ish in my mind a few years ago because of the way I would design and style the events I was creating with our full service event + design firm, Design Plan Play. I had this concept in my mind, but due to the “on 24/7 – no downtime” of our event industry and workload I never had the opportunity to launch. It was only when we were hit with the unexpected pandemic in 2020 that I had “time” to put this idea in motion. In April of 2020 I finally designed and sent to print and built my first “Celebration Table” and Fete.ish was born. It has been over a year and a half and the product launch has been a total success. In the middle of what was an almost complete shut down of the event industry, I had the busiest year to date in 2020. Read more>>

Pranati (Pranoo) Kumar | Owner of Rohi’s Readery and Education Leader

Rohi’s Readery is named after my daughter Rohini Ray Skomra. But the name Rohini has deep roots and ties to someone very close to me, my annama (which means grandmother in Hindi). My annama was a steadfast advocate for children’s rights to education in India especially with the caste system, a fierce protector of her family, and mentee to Freedom Fighter Sarojini Naidu. For those who don’t know Sarojini Naidu was an instrumental figure and activist in women’s emancipation in India and anti-colonial rule, and she was coined the “Nightingale of India” because of her contribution to poetry active literary life. So Rohi really does speak to this idea of activism in the context of critical literacy. Read more>>

Ralph DiBugnara | Mortgage & Real Estate Industry leader with over 20 years of experience and over 40 Billion in Homes Financed

1The concept of The Disruptors Network was and continues to be to build business in our communities through education , collaboration and constant innovation of our principle concepts . Which are educating the next generation of entrepreneurs to be leaders and not followers. As well as using our resources and access to train new forces in our core business of Mortgage , Real Estate and brand building.. Read more>>

Jessica Romero | Founder of Xula Handmade

Back in 2019, I was longing for a way to create connections and opportunities for Mexican Artisans, particularly women, and reconnect back with my Mexican roots. It wasn’t until I visited a Mexican textile market, filled with fun artisanal accessories that the idea of Xula Handmade was born. I knew that I wanted to develop relationships with women artisans, learn about their weaving techniques, their traditions, and their stories. In January 2020, I traveled to Chiapas, Mexico, and connected with a group of amazing indigenous women artisans and the rest is history! Read more>>

OShea Filidor | Musician

By how successful the people are around you . if you the only one eating your not successful Read more>>

Lauren Marsicano, Esq. | Business Lawyer, Confidence Queen, Networking Maverick, and Founder of the nonprofit Women for Success

While everyone’s definition of success is unique, success to me is synonymous with self-determination; our ability to make our own choices and manage our own lives. The right to have and determine our own choices, especially as women, is a huge part of achieving equality in our society, and why one of my focuses this past year has been launching Business Showers for women who have started their own business. This is a small shift we can make in how we treat women choosing non-traditional paths and defining success on their own terms. Launching my own businesses has provided me that feeling of autonomy that I never felt as an associate at a law firm. And now, whether it’s through my law firm Marsicano + Leyva, my empowerment platform Networking Maverick, or my nonprofit community Women for Success, I’m combining my skillset and passion for business law with a mission to help women gain confidence to launch their own businesses, become financially independent, and define success on their own terms. woot woot! Read more>>

Dani Silverman | CEO & Founder

Success is being at peace with yourself and choosing actions that leave a positive impact on others. Being at peace with yourself is about authenticity with ‘you’ first- in other words, living from a place of conviction and truth. This puts us best in line with our purpose and empowers us to live without fear. Success for me right now is creating time for rest, family and friends, eating healthy, moving my body, laughing and making products that support people’s wellness. Read more>>