Through our work we have had the good fortune of seeing firsthand how success comes in every shape, size, color, faith, and orientation. More importantly we’ve learned that success is often the result of people embracing their unique backgrounds and so we’ve asked the community to tell us about their background and how it has impacted where they are today.

Lisa Zucker | MSW, LCSW, Certified Thanatologist

I’m from South Florida. My parents and my grandparents were always involved in charitable work which had a huge impact on my sense of purpose in the world: that taking care of others and being of service to the community is at the core of our family values. Becoming a social worker was a natural extension of this. Throughout my personal and professional life, grief and loss would at times become central, leading me to focus my work on Thanatology. Now in my private practice, I work mainly with people who have lost a loved one, with caregivers, and with people who have a terminal illness as well as educating the community about trauma, grief, and loss. Read more>>

Sally Hunter | Photographer & DJ

I’m born and raised in Miami. Wouldn’t have it any other way. I spent my childhood mostly in the South Beach/ Miami Beach area and I think that plays a huge role in who I am and how i see things now. My parents also had me at very young ages and I was exposed to a lot at an early age (nothing bad though!). Whether it was all the craziness happening on South Beach streets, or going to heavy metal shows with my dad when i was still a kid, i’d like to think i soaked up a lot of culture early in life and it helped me discover new subcultures, music genres, art forms, etc. Read more>

Morela Avilan | Visual Artist

I was born in Caracas, Venezuela, a country located in the northern part of South America whose coast faces the Caribbean Sea. Venezuela’s southern border adjoins the Amazon basin and on its west side the Andes mountains. Venezuela’s center incorporates large verdant plains. Caracas, the capital city, is located in the north, very close to the coast, and is about 2,000 feet above sea level. For me, its most important attributes are its climate—warm and fresh—and it’s clear light. These characteristics are important to me because they form part of the basic inventory that I use for the creation for my pieces. The city is in a valley surrounded by a majestic mountain, El Ávila, which changes its tonalities continuously, as a person changes his/her mood. Read more>>

Isabel Garcia Nevett | Chocolatier

I am from Venezuela and this has definitely impacted my business. Chocolate and cacao are both a big part of our national culture and it was very present during my childhood. Venezuelan cacao is famous for its delicate flavors and the chocolate made with it is prized all over the world. We grew up eating it on a daily basis. And it was this love of chocolate that propelled my sister and I to start a business making bonbons and confections using Venezuelan chocolate. Today, Venezuelan cacao and chocolate is still considered some of the very best worldwide. At our chocolate shop, we mostly still use Venezuelan chocolate and have won any national and international awards for our original chocolate creations. My sister and I have tried chocolate from all over the world, from Peru and Ecuador to Taiwan and Madagascar, but we always come back to the nutty, caramel, delicious flavor notes of Venezuelan chocolate. Read more>>

Kelly Rooney | Owner & CEO

I am truly multi-national. I was born in Mexico City, to a Mexican mom and Irish by nationality, but born and raised in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) dad. I moved to Ecuador at 9 months old, followed by Australia, Paraguay and Bolivia before I ended up in Florida. On my mom’s side, most of my family stayed in Mexico so we visited often, but my dad’s family moved around quite a bit as well, so we travelled a lot to see them as well as for my dad’s work. Seeing and experiencing many cultures from a young age made me understand so much more about the hardships of so many people in developing countries and how lucky most of us truly are. It made me passionate about traveling and exploring, as well as giving me a drive to immerse myself in different environments and cultures. Read more>>

Jacqueline Parker | Chef & Owner

I am a born and raised New Yorker, specifically the South Bronx. I am the daughter of Puerto Rican parents, both of whom relocated to New York from Puerto Rico well before I was born. We were surrounded by friends and family and, in true Puerto Rican culture, spent countless hours together as a community. Food is an integral part of our culture and I learned early on to have a tremendous love and respect for the preparation of not only our traditional cuisine, but all food in general. My mother and all of the women in our Bronx community were such an inspiration to me, not only for their strength, courage and determination, but for their respect to our history and traditions. Read more>>

Ashlee Green | Graphic Designer & Brand Strategist

I’m originally from Mitchellville, Maryland (the DC metro area) and I grew up in what a lot of my friends described as “the cosby house”. My folks are still married, I have 4 brothers, we all lived together & for the most part got along. My dad is a serial entrepreneur & my mom is a teacher. So seeing my dad run his business & live life on his terms was one of the biggest parts of me deciding that I was going to own my own business one day. Subconsciously I knew that I was never going to be someone’s employee forever but instead i was going to have the freedom to do what I want & live how I want on my own terms. Read more>>