Ms. Nicole Badrudeen is an entrepreneur and author of The Gorgeous Skin Handbook. She wrote the book and built an automated sales and marketing system to market and sell it. She has started building similar systems for other businesses and wants to give back to the world through her social missions, which include teaching girls about sexual violence and helping those in need. As she states: “Life has given me a second chance and it is my duty to give back.” Ms. Bardudeen used cocaine and pills and suffered from depression. She even tried to commit suicide at 17. She states that she didn’t think big, was a dermatologic and plastic surgery medical assistant. She earned a GED and never finished college. With this history, she accepted defeat and felt that she would never amount to much. Three years ago, Nicole hit rock bottom when her lifestyle caught up with her and she lost everything. She sat in her bathroom, contemplating suicide, thinking that she was out of options and her only option was death. However, soon after, she discovered entrepreneurship, and her life was changed. Ms. Badrudeen started learning new skills and building her dreams. This has shown her a new way to think and live. Entrepreneurship is all about mindset, and she realized that she would never reach her goals if she didn’t change every aspect of her life, and she started to do so and continues to do so today. While she sometimes gets insecure or scared talking about her past, Nicole ultimately knows it will inspire others to change theirs as well. Too many people are scared of the unknown, feel they are shackled to their fears, insecurities and past. She wants everyone to know that they are not! No matter how hard their goals or “dream life” may seem, it is within reach.
As a member of a religious youth group, Ms. De La Rosa remembers visiting convalescent hospitals to sing and spend time with the elder patients at least once a week and she enjoyed it a lot. Bringing a smile to someone who had little to no visitors made her feel good and she knew that her journey would involve helping others feel good by showing compassion, love and giving them the most valuable aspect in a elders world, “time”. Growing up in a single mother home taught Ms. De La Rosato be a lot like her mother, who exemplified discipline, hard work, integrity and helping out your neighbor. Her neighborhood consisted of many single moms who all lived in low income apartments that were owned by the Housing Authority. Her mom worked in a packing house as a grader and always pushed Connie to live a better life, owning her home and have a job that paid well with benefits. She decided to be a Social Worker and knew that she had to get into the Welfare Department. She worked her way up from Clerical, Supervisor in Clerical then Benefits Specialist. During her employment, Connie’s mother became very ill with COPD and she had to care of her in her home. There were many visits to the hospital, convalescent, back home, etc. Ms. De La Rosa become frustrated with not understanding the kind of care her mother needed and if those needs were being met by professionals, was overwhelmed and required much attention. Once her mother passed, in 1991, she decided to work harder and become a Social Worker so that she could learn more about medications, rights, and know the resources to help others whether they had a similar situation to hers or not. After becoming a Social Worker III for several years, Ms. De La Rosa retired at age 50 and started her business in helping families find the right kind of care and offer guidance, resources, etc. This is much of what she needed during the time she cared for her mother. Her found passion and experience has joyfully led her to assist families (with no costs involved) in finding the right care home such as tours, background checks and follow up visits to ensure the care for their loved one is provided.
Born and raised in the off grid isolated mountains of Northern California, A.C. Moon early on developed a strong love for plants, nature, helping people and creating things. With the help of her cancer ridden survivalist mother, she learned quickly about the botanical resources around us and the drive it takes to make it in this world. After many years of living on her own and traveling to cities where the cancers of the world condemned society most, she started Harvest Moon Munchies Co., (a legal organic medical Cannabis Bakery) by age 21 and dedicated huge amounts of time to advocating for the health benefits of cannabis. As she attended college she lived off the grid, raising her son alone and often traveling for business. She managed to obtain a degree in Environmental Horticulture with a minor in Forestry studies and applied them to the newly evolving medical cannabis industry. By age 25, she had a professional growers permits and was working as a partner to cannabis collectives in California. She also began writing for advocacy groups and attending events that would later pave the way for an exciting life in the industry. Through years of battles in the constantly changing society of legal cannabis, Ms. Moon decided to try her real dreams at becoming an inventor and innovator. She began this journey with her first patent pending invention Croptopsgreenhouses.com. Her instant popup greenhouse has been featured in several magazines and events for Botany and is only one of the many innovations she hopes to create and evolve to help people grow in diverse environmental conditions. A.C. Moon speaks out that even helping save one lemon tree in your yard without a garbage bag, is worth it to the planet. (Please grow Organically!) More recently, AC Moon was voted one of Skunk Magazines “Women of Weed”, obtained several certifications and continues to offer her services in her co-ownership and partnership with Golden Blaze Consulting Inc. of Northern California. In this consulting venture, she helps newly legal companies, brand, market, innovate and grow organically a more sustainable and environmentally friendly approach to cannabis commerce in all ways. She also continues to work on gaining investors and partners for her inventions and continues her work as both a student and teacher in several fields from cooking to creations. Her passion and drive for helping people diversify, reach for their dreams and never give up will hopefully encourage others past fears and let them know... “Don’t be afraid to reinvent yourself, passion is the fuel to catch your dreams on fire….”
Ms. Golecha started her journey at the age of 17 as a door-to-door sales person selling bank accounts in the scorching heat of Mumbai, India. With her inability to speak good English, she had a hard time convincing customers at the bank, so her manager thought she would be better off sourcing customers in the field. She was driven, passionate and persistent and, with her hard work, managed to outperform all other sales people to become the Best Sales Person across all bank branches in India. She kept her journey going and in no time, she landed a job with Citibank as an NRI Customer Executive. Ms. Golecha’s career was going well until she realized she was not good enough for the job as she did not have an MBA. Her peers would often criticize her for the lack of a good Master’s degree. She worked hard to pursue an MBA and ranked 21st nationally on her entrance test and went to one of the top B-Schools in India. Her placement post MBA was one of the highest packages at the campus. After getting married, Ms. Golecha moved to the US, leaving her high paying job as a Commercial Banker in India. As she came to the US on a dependent visa, she was not allowed to work. Her husband was very supportive and motivating. With his suggestions and her own desire to bring her life back on track, she decided to volunteer her time as a Research Assistant at the University of Chicago. She also volunteered at a Risk Management company. During that time, her husband introduced the concept of ‘Six Sigma’ to her and recommended she study for the Green Belt certification. She had just given birth to her baby and thought it was a great idea to use the time at home and started preparing for the exam. She was so intrigued by principles of Six Sigma, the rigor and discipline of this methodology made her so excited that she decided to make a career in this field. She cleared her exam and became a Certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt. Ms. Golecha started working as a Process Engineer with a major Insurance company, leading enterprise wide process improvement and optimization projects. After spending several years optimizing business processes, and having gained substantial experience, she pursued the path of Black Belt and earned certification by ASQ (The Global Voice of Quality) as a Certified Six Sigma Black Belt. Currently, Ms. Golecha works at United Healthcare as a Six Sigma Black Belt driving millions of dollars in benefits to the organization and coaching Green Belts. She calls herself a Process Psychologist as it gives her immense pleasure to listen to customers and fix their business processes by making them lean and effective.
Ms. Maxwell was born in Los Angeles, California, moved to Sacramento and now resides in Rancho Cordova. She loves helping others and is a kindhearted person. She is a very dedicated person and does not like to give up. Ms. Maxwell never takes life for granted because it’s not promise. If she can’t do something, she will learn how. Not long ago, she suffered with pneumonia for 7 months, which made it hard to do things like walk, talk, and breathe on her own. She was basically was just existing, but she never gave up. She kept pushing herself and every day she prayed that she would overcome and she did. Ms. Maxwell still has some issues and challenges, but she does not let that get her down. She loves to dance and was not able to do that at that time. She was really stuck in a hard place in her life. She got an awaking by God through her body and it was deep. Ms. Maxwell kept telling herself that when she recovered, she would get out of bed. She had faith and recovered. She enrolled in a dance class at Studio Urban Dance Academy where she found hope and security. Dance was an escape for her, which was a good thing. Ms. Maxwell wants young women to know that despite hardship in your life you can reach for the stars. She continuously expresses her thanks to Helen, her mentor, Miss Alison, her teachers at Studio T Urban Dance Academy, her mother for pushing her to be the best, and her son Tyler for all of their support.
Ms. Bauman is the CEO, Proprietor and Director of Shellie's Early Start Learning Centers, well established grade an nursery schools in Phoenix, Arizona. After working in a variety of industries, she founded her first daycare center in 1998, following a cancer diagnosis the year before. She refused to let her diagnosis defeat her and decided to open up the center feeling she had a positive influence on youth. Ms. Bauman wanted to be able to work from home and be available to her own children. Since 1998, she has opened a total of 4 schools dedicated to children ages infant through 12 years old. The school's mission statement is to seek to be a leader in providing high quality, focused early education for the whole child. She strives to engage and inspire parents, students and the broader community toward a deeper understanding of the wonders of childhood. Ms. Bauman's focus is on delivering excellence in childcare for the children, staff and surrounding community in a nurturing environment where the uniqueness of each child is recognized, respected and children are learning, growing and safe.
When Fern Mehler was growing up in the Bronx, all the kids, boys and girls, would play together on the streets; marbles, bottle caps, Acey/Deucy (handball against the wall but the ball had to first bounce on the ground before it hit the wall). There was only one rule. You couldn’t go home crying because a girl (or boy) beat you at a game. Everyone who played had a chance of winning. Her family moved to Queens when she was 13 and still wanted to play handball with the boys, but was told by girlfriends that, if she played with the boys, she had to let the boys win. “Why?” she innocently asked. “Because they’re boys.” they answered, as if it were the most logical answer in the world. Well, that didn’t work for her then and it still doesn’t. Ms. Mehler started out in college as an actress. In fact, she has a master’s degree in Theatre. While working on her advanced degree and trying to get acting jobs, she worked in a bank. At 28, Fern realized that acting was not the money making field she thought it would be, so she reluctantly took banking seriously and began working full time for Citibank. She had became a sales person, selling mortgage products. In 1988, the mortgage crisis hit New York and it seems that she was personally responsible for all of the bad mortgage loans in Citibank’s portfolio. At that point she felt that she needed to change her life and get out of banking. At 35, Ms. Mehler went back to school at night and became an attorney. She presently work for a large law firm in Manhattan, specializing in residential real estate. Her newest adventure is as a board member of W.A.R.E., Women Attorneys in Real Estate, a new group of women attorneys practicing in New York who specialize in real estate. They are establishing a network of women attorneys to collaborate, mentor, communicate and support each other in our practice. What she has learned from all of these changes is this: even though you think you want something, life can throw you a curveball and you have to take the swing at it. As a person, you can adapt to the changes that are thrown at you and find a new path. The skills Fern learned in the playground (fair play), as an actor (memorization, attention to detail and listening to others) and the skills learned as a sales person (organization, time management, prioritization, client contact and managing expectations) all help her in her practice as an attorney. Every step we take always helps us throughout our life. Lessons learned!
Ms. Julia Galloway started selling Avon online because of her disability. In 2006 she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and had to go on SSDI. She felt that since she was not able to drive or work well with others, she needed something in her life to give it some meaning. Julia found Avon online which works perfectly for her as she doesn't have to interact with people face to face. Since the online store is open 24 hours, customers can place their orders whenever they wish. Ms. Galloway loves what she does because she sets her own hours, and work more when she is having a good day. Due to health limitations, this is perfect for her. She is looking forward to the networking opportunities that P.O.W.E.R. will provide to help her business grow.
Ms. Elaine Adevai is the Executive Director and Founder of New Vista for Families, Inc., which is a national nonprofit providing services that assist families in need. She has been with this organization for the past 8 years. She also handles community outreach to raise donations and helps the women and children referred to them to get back on their feet and find permanent housing. Elaine was inspired to open a shelter because she, herself, was an abused woman who had to make it on her own with four children as there were no shelters of this type available at the time. When she began working with abused women at Safe Horizon Shelter, she knew that one day she would open her own shelter. Opening the shelter has been the highlight of Ms. Adevai’s career thus far. She looks forward to expanding her psychoeducational and counseling services and expanding the shelter. If you are interested in learning more about New Vista for Families, Inc. contact: [email protected]