Many books on startups and business talk about how there are right and wrong reasons for starting a business. So, we asked a handful of successful founders about their reasons and the thought-process behind starting their business.

Helena Silva | Founder & Creative Director, BENT&BREE

Working for myself and having the freedom to make my own decisions has always been on the back of my mind. However, after becoming a parent this thought lingered on my mind even more because now, I wanted freedom to be able to spend more time with my child. Nonetheless, the fear of the unknown did not allow me to take the next steps. It was not until the birth of my second child that I decided to take the leap. Read more>>

Silvia Gaeta | Co-Founder GrisPetalo

We started our brand GrisPetalo® in 2018, I was pregnant at the moment and I have always loved the European stylish look for newborns and babies, when I started looking clothes for my baby girl, I couldn’t find anything online that i liked and felt good, also what i found here locally i didn’t like and thought the fabric and detail was awful and didn’t like the feel of it. So I actually had to buy the clothes from Europe and had it shipped here which took a long time. That remained in my mind, my husband and I always have had an entrepreneurial heart so we teamed up and took matters into our hands to create a new different line of baby clothing. Read more>>

susana perla- maniera | Macarons baker

One of the main reasons I started my own business was so that I could be home with my kids. Secondly I love baking. It relaxes me and is my form of meditation. Even when I’m hectic trying to get orders done. Before the pandemic even started I was looking for something that I love doing. And baking has always been a passion I had since I was a kid. So I made the decision to learn how to make macarons. It was a bit of an arduous process, learning on my own how to make them. However with each batch I knew I was getting closer and closer to getting it right. There are still days where things can go wrong. They are the most finicky dessert to make and they definitely keep you on your toes. Read more>>

Nandy Smith | Speaker | Author | Activist | Entrepreneur

I started One Shades of Brown, Inc to bring unity in the African American community. Learning more about colorism, a practice of discrimination by which those with lighter skin are treated more favorably than those with darker skin. This practice is a product of racism in the United States, in that it upholds the white standards of beauty and benefits white people in the institutions of oppression. Colorism within the black community has been a serious emotional and psychological battle. One Shades of Brown is a non-profit organization (movement), that celebrates all shades of brown. Our motto is ONE Fight, One Mission, One Family! Read more>>

Sheila Zayas | Reiki Master, Crystal Healer & Meditation Guide

I spent many years unable to sleep a full night, feeling depressed, anxious, and dissatisfied in life. Also, all my muscles were tensed and my nasal allergies raged wild. One evening, I had an anger-filled outburst that was out of proportion to what happened. The next day, I knew I needed to turn my awareness toward what truly plagued me. So, I started to breathe consciously, immerse myself in sound baths, experiment with crystals, and other forms of energy healing. It took a bit but eventually, my anxiety calmed down tremendously, my depression turned into joy and smiles, my allergies settled more, and I started sleeping through the night. It was so gradual and subtle, that I didn’t notice the change in my emotions and body right away. Read more>>

Michelle Cortes | Skincare Specialist and Sugarist

I’ve always felt destined to be an Entrepeneur. When I fully committed to skincare and sugaring hair removal, I knew eventually I would start my own business in that field. When the opportunity arose, I didn’t hesitate because everything felt right. Many thoughts went through my mind about starting my business but the main one was that I’d be able to take care of my clients how I want too, with no restrictions. That excited me! But more so I’d be putting my creative energy into my own. I wanted to be able to offer a product or a service that fitted my vision, building my company based on my own ideas. Read more>>

Dr. Michele Finneran | Psychotherapist/Published Author

After the community mental health center closed where I worked at, I had to take some time to figure out my next step. I was continously applying for 9 to 5 jobs with no responses. I was tired of working hard and making minimual money, as well as working for someone else. However, I did not want to lose the security of a fixed wage and income. When all the doors were closing in on me, I sat in silence, attempting to figure out my next steps. Read more>>

Shantuey Clark | Mother & Online Boutique Owner

I always knew I wanted to get into fashion. At a very young age my mother would share stories on how I would pick out my own clothing and everything would match. So it’s been a gift at birth, with that transitioning into my grade school days. I would often get compliments on how I would put pieces/looks together. After high school I enroll into American InterContinental University and obtain my Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art. Read more>>

Rhona Rubio | Artist

“The Gifts of Imperfection” by Berné Brown was really fabulous. It was beautiful to see the power of accepting imperfections and understanding that without them we would never truly be able to experience the beautiful things life has to offer. It’s not always easy, but it’s vital that we see purpose in every season, even the confusing-mixed-up-imperfect-messy ones. Read more>>

Caroline Ojeda | Certified Makeup Artist and Beauty Marketing

I’ve always been involved in the Beauty industry since a very young age, its truly all I know and have always been around, and I absolutely love all it entails, it’s an industry that never gets boring and that is always changing. At just the young age of six I was already exploring the beauty industry thanks to my mom who worked for one of the largest Cosmetic manufacturers in New York. Fast forward to 30 plus years later and the idea of having my own makeup line was always burning inside me and I just knew I needed to pursue it! Read more>>

Chrain Walls | Etiquette Coach, Wisdom Dealer & More

When I started Walls of Wisdom, the thought process was, “We can do better.” Growing up, u had the privilege of attending charm school and being in pageants. All of that taught me life skills that I still use today. I started to see so many young women and young men who just didn’t know how to carry themselves. It broke my heart…so I did something about it! As time went on, I added more services and expanded my brand. Read more>>

Rheana Mills | Cosmetologist, Organic Formulator and Entrepreneur

In my infant to adolescent stages of life, I had the opportunity of being introduced to entrepreneurship skills and knowledge and cosmetology such as skin, hair and makeup which has now developed into an un-going passion. At the age of eight, I would play games that emulated senior positions, I would pick flowers to make perfumes, use broken eyeshadow and alcohol to make face highlighters and much more. Read more>>