It takes a lot more than an idea to build a business, but there can’t be a business without the idea. So we asked folks who’ve built wonderful businesses to tell us about how they came up with the idea in the first place.

Amy Mays | Director, The Happy Crew.

The teenagers involved in our early venture, 1 Liquid House, took our primary idea of specific events for creative teens to a new level when they created weekly meetings to address teen mental health issues. Read more>>

Carole Bright-Alvarez | Business Owner & “Tea”cher

The idea for iN-TEA was actually inspired by coffee! – Living in Boston in the late 1990’s, coffee shops were prolific, but there were very few places to go where tea was honored and presented at its best. I had recently completed my MBA and had written a business plan for a handmade furniture store. But, while hanging out with a group of women who loved tea (one from India, one from London and other more local tea drinkers), we fantasized about a place where tea was presented with knowledge and integrity. I wrote the business plan, and 10 years later, acted upon it!. Read more>>

Jennifer Metcalf | Physical Therapist & Pilates Instructor

The idea for Higher Terrain Aspen started with the desire to offer the Aspen community workouts that compliment the outdoors sports we all participate in here in the mountains. A workout that’s both challenging, and low impact. The Lagree Method offered at our studio is a core focused method, with a strong focus on lower body strength. It’s very functional and the perfect compliment to skiing, hiking, and biking as well as being amazing cross training! Additionally, I also own a Pilates studio called Flex Pilates Aspen ( located right across the street ) and it’s been amazing being able to offer a more intense workout to clients who enjoy the core focus of Pilates but are looking for a harder workout traditional Pilates. Read more>>

Anne-Marie Desmond | Mindfulness Facilitator

About 8 years ago, a local elementary school reached out and asked if I’d help out with their Wondrous Wednesday program and bring yoga to young K-5 students. After a year of programming we were blown away! Data showed kids as young as 6 and 7 were struggling with stress and anxiety of school, friends, home and begging for more time to relax and simply do nothing. In this culture of go-go-go that is so pervasive with adults, it turns out kids were feeling these pressures as well. We set out to design a K-12 curriculum that not only taught students about their nervous system and stress response system, but also provided life long tools for settling the mind, calming the body and opening the heart. UB.U was born and students, teachers and parents at home began to learn how to explore the mind and educate the heart. Read more>>

Ryan Michelle Scavo | Freelance Photographer & Writer

I grew up in a family that really valued capturing moments. While living overseas as a kid, communication was different (it was the 80s after all!). So, our parents would send videos and photographs back and forth with family in the states to share everything from daily life to bigger vacations and outings. With that, I have had a camera in my hand since I was a kid. I’d shoot rolls and rolls of film in grade school and my teenage years and in high school I worked at a portrait studio. I shot my first wedding when I was 19 and was hooked on capturing experiences since then. Finally, when we moved to Colorado in 2014, I decided to make it official by starting a business as a freelance photographer. Read more>>

Mackenzie Burgess | Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Recipe Developer

I graduated from Colorado State University with a B.S. in Nutrition and Food Science. This past summer of 2020, I completed my required dietetic internship and passed the RD exam so I am now a credentialed Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)! On this journey to becoming a RDN, I started getting more into the culinary space and loved the challenge of using up ingredients I had and making healthy food taste delicious. I would always be the person bringing over tons of energy bites or extra vegetable curry I tested the night before for my friends to try. From here, I was inspired to create an online food blog with my original recipes called Cheerful Choices. On my blog, I focus on healthy recipes with customizable ingredients “of your choice”. This allows recipes to fit to different dietary preferences and use up ingredients already on hand. Read more>>

Rebecca Leslie | Small Business Owner, Designer and Painter

After finishing my undergraduate studies at CU in architecture and then later at NYU in Production Design, and working years in retail I knew two things… I wanted to own my own small business and stay creative. This led to my first business at 26, a second hand furniture store that I called Good Use that was more of a furniture boutique, selling refinished, repurposed pieces of old furniture and making them unique and new again. The beauty of this was I started in Boulder, CO in a community that embraced recycling and repurposing. As the years went by and my business grew in success, I was often asked by my customers if I could refinish their kitchen cabinets. Why not I thought? They’re basically permanent pieces of furniture. And that’s when I really got thinking… Boulder County and its surrounding areas is an expensive place to live. The cost of an average home makes it difficult for most people to afford expensive remodels and updates. Read more>>

Lisa White | IVF Mentor & Fertility Coach

I didn’t really see anyone else addressing the emotional challenges one faces while going through fertility treatments. Having lived through IVF myself, it became apparent to me that individuals who are confronted with fertility challenges are given very little support outside of their medical team. You are often thrown into a world full of abbreviations and medical jargon not really knowing what to expect. Until you’re really IN it, you recognize that it’s not the physical pains that are the hardest to endure, it’s the emotional pains. I knew a mind, body, spirit approach was essential to not only get through IVF but to thrive through it all. This approach is what I personally used to guide me through the process of IVF and it’s what I now share with others. I drew upon my background as a holistic occupational therapist, and knew it was no coincidence I had chosen to enter into this profession back in 2001. Read more>>