Article written by Thea Holtlund Jacobsen
Jen Gurecki is cofounder and CEO of Coalition Snow – the world’s first outdoor equipment company exclusively for women. Coalition Snow was founded in 2014 in response to the industry's go-to strategy of "shrinking and pinking" women’s skis and snowboards. The women-owned and operated company's motto is "Less Bros. More bras." Gurecki describes herself as an adventurer, entrepreneur, and editor of Sisu, a magazine that uncovers untold stories of the outdoors.
Picture from She Ventures
Anne Wojcicki simultaneously pursued competitive ice skating while completing her bachelor's degree at Yale University, but this is far from the only thing that makes her an inspiration. In 2006, she and her co-founders founded the genetics and biotech company 23andMe. Today, the company is worth $2.5 billion. Wojcicki’s goal was to provide customers with affordable ways to get ahold of crucial information about their health that could potentially save their lives. 23andMe is the first company to receive FDA approval to sell breast cancer genomic testing kits directly to customers without requiring a prescription. Through Wojcicki’s work, 23andMe is using real science, real data and genetic insights to positively impact customers’ lives.
Picture from Makers
Julie Wainwright is founder of TheRealReal, the leader in authenticated luxury consignment. Knowing whether luxury brand products purchased online are real or knockoffs has been a problem for years. Wainwright's company has established a major secondary market for designer products by empowering consignors and buyers to extend the life cycle of luxury goods. What began as a scrappy startup has transformed the business of authenticated luxury consignment into a dynamic, global movement that champions not only quality and craftsmanship, but also sustainability and community.
Picture from San Francisco Business Times
Evita Robinson is no stranger to entrepreneurship. Robinson is the founder of Nomadness Travel Tribe, an award-winning travel lifestyle brand that represents the underrepresented demographic in mainstream travel. The company's mission is to show the world that travel has no racial, gender, religious, economic, or interest limitations through our community representation and relevancy. Nomadness is responsible for over $50 million being injected into the travel industry annually. In the private platform the Tribe’s nomads share stories, advice, photos and conversation about their personal experiences around the world, how they are received as travelers of color, and ways in which they can help one another regardless of distance.
Picture from JBF
Arlan Hamilton founded Backstage Capital, a seed-stage investment fund that supports underrepresented founders, including women, people of color and LGBTQ. During the time Hamilton started pitching Backstage Capital to investors, she was homeless. Today, Backstage Capital has invested over $7M in more than 120 companies led by underrepresented founders. Hamilton is a very driven woman, and as she put it herself, “a no is just one step closer to the next yes”
Picture from Fortune