Are you thinking about starting a business? If so, we think you’ll enjoy reading about how these seasoned entrepreneurs thought about the question when they were in your shoes.

Sadie Stutzman | COO [Chief Oven Officer] Full Stop. Bakery

I was knee deep in a PhD program when I realized that I needed to UNHURRY my life and reset my priorities (aka I needed to FULL STOP.) I needed to step away from all the things that were consuming my time and reinvest that energy into something I was excited about and more importantly, into PEOPLE. So, I graduated with a Master’s degree and started Full Stop. Bakery. Because I for one, know no better way to love on people than through food, so here I am, over a year later, still making crackers! Read more>>

Heather Williamson | Owner, Chandler & Scent Connoisseur

The Dainty Blossom Company was born differently than most. It was the spring of 2015 and my husband Matt and I had just returned home from a week-long stay at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale. That was the best week, and also the worst week of my life. The worst week because my fears had been confirmed – I am sick. The best week because I finally had validation. After 10 years of suffering through symptoms that made no sense, and doctors who couldn’t find an answer, I finally had one. At 28 years old, my diagnoses were multiple: Ehlers Danlos Syndrome Type 3, POTS, dysautonomia, gastroparesis, just to name a few. Read more>>

Eric Taylor | Jewelry Designer & Artist

My thought process behind starting my own business is that I want to be able to share my passion for the natural beauty of precious and semi-precious stones while also providing a service that highlights said beauty in a timeless, wearable fashion. For me, wire art is just the beginning. In the future, customers and clients can look forward to original, handcrafted silversmithing, goldsmithing, and lapidary designs. My minimalist style focuses on enhancing and accenting the beauty already present within the stone without the design being a distraction. I feel some designers can become to focused on the design itself in lose the stone in the process. Read more>>

Terrance Menyweather | Legendary social entrepreneur, visionary, innovator, influencer, and creative leader.

The process towards starting my business was something that took shape over time. I did not even have a concept that I could run my own business. I knew that I liked a variety of things and that I could do anything so I always had that in my mind. It wasn’t until I was working at Hewlett Packard in Houston. It was back in 2008 and I became aware that they were laying off people who had worked there for a long time and replacing them with new people like me. I have always been thoughtful about my environment. Read more>>

Robert Polizzi | CPR & First Aid Instructor

I wanted to make more of a difference serving and helping people. I wanted to be different from the rest of the other companies that do what I do. My company would be different in approach, different in classes taught, and different in classes are taught. Read more>>

LeAnn & Doug Bair | Vacation Rental Property Owner

In 2005, we found the one place on earth where we want to spend the rest of our lives. Twelve years later, 2017, we opened our vacation rental to share this place with others! Read more>>

CheyAnne Clemons | Owner

I have always loved workout clothes and been an active person. When I was younger I would buy from Nike and Under Armor a lot. As I got older I started purchasing from more online brands like Gymshark and Alo. I started to get frustrated that the really high quality activewear pieces were so expensive, but when I shopped less expensive brands either the products would be lacking or the customer service would be lacking. I was still spending around $50-$60 on one piece of active wear so it was frustrating to feel like the company wasn’t meeting my needs. knew I wasn’t the only person who was frustrated about this kind of thing, so Shine Athleisure was born. We are providing top of the line, high quality pieces at a lower price point. Read more>>

Chuck Gable | Owen/Builder of Built To Order Customs

I started working at a young age. Starting in the food service industry, traveling through the Military to get out and find myself in the oil and gas industry. 24 years of working for other people. I have been married for 15 years now. I am a father of of three boys. I come to realize I couldn’t make a life for my family that we truly wanted by continuing to work for other people. One day the opportunity came for me to leave my job while my wife’s career was taking off. Of course I jumped at the opportunity. Roughly six months later I found myself wanting to make money for my family and got into woodworking on the farmhouse craze. Read more>>

Renee Sinning | Teen Life Coach and Parent Partner, specializing in improving Self-Esteem, Mindset and Confidence in today’s teens.

I’ve spent my entire career working with teenagers, the majority of it in the classroom as a high school math teacher. During that time I saw a lot of kids fall through the cracks, not getting the help or support they needed. Especially in terms of how they see themselves. As a math teacher I only had so many moments in a day to talk with them about life stuff, the things that really mattered – like how they feel about themselves, positive self-talk, knowing that doing their best was good enough, and that they were enough exactly as they are. Read more>>

Bolivar DePeña | Musician / Entrepreneur

I had wanted to be a rock star ever since I was seven years old. Little did I know that being a musician would be more like a business. Luckily for me, I decided to pursue a business degree in college and an MBA in grad school. This gave me the skills to put together a business plan related to music and media that was multi-faceted. I formed an LLC in 2014 along with a separate bank account for music-related income. That was just the beginning, as I have continued to learn and grown from running my music as a business, and I firmly believe my experiences running this small business will help me in future endeavors, even if they are not related to arts and media. Read more>>

Nicole Brecht | Executive Director & Founder, Good Life Refuge, farm animal sanctuary

I have been in the animal rescue scene for almost two decades now. After a while, it became clear that there is an endless need of rescue for animals. So many are neglected and abused or just left to fend for themselves. One of my personal goals in life is to have impact and to make the world a better place for animals and this was the seed which started Good Life Refuge. There are many shelters and dog, horse and cat rescues, but not that many rescues who help farm animals. Farm animals are as precious, emotional and smart as many of our domesticated animals and my love for them and their need for help was another deciding factor to start a farm animal sanctuary. Read more>>

Christina Benty | Principal Consultant at Strategic Leadership Solutions

I found myself at a choice point when I finished 12 years in local politics (as a Town Councillor and a Mayor) and completed a Masters of Arts in Leadership at the exact same time. I could find a job or I could take my lived experience in politics, combine it with my academic background, and start a business. I saw a need for meaningful leadership training in the world of local government, especially from folks that had walked the walk and understand the political pressures one faces in serving their community. Read more>>

Laurie and Brad Bellendir | Travel Agents

We have always been very fond of vacations. I mean, who isn’t, right? However, we realized after one of our family vacations that we wanted to turn our hobby into a career. To give a little bit of a background into our situation…. we are a blended family of 8 (now 11 with spouses and grandchild), yep just like those crazy Brady’s! And it was after a family trip to Puerto Rico in 2015 when we had the thought… ‘if we can plan a very extensive trip for our family of 8, why not do this for others?’ Read more>>

Shelly Hipp | Mobile Massage Therapist

I have always loved being a massage therapist. Over the past two years, I noticed barriers to accessing massage. Starting a mobile massage business has allowed me to remove some of those barriers. For busy parents, I am able to work around their kids school schedules and come when they are available. Some of my clients do not drive and my mobile service means that they do not have to worry about getting to their appointment. Other folks may still be working from home, allowing me to show up between meetings and as soon as the massage is done, they can get back to the next task. I love to help people feel their best and owing my own business has allowed me to fulfill this calling. Read more>>

Kristin Hall | Owner of Vintage Alley Designs

I love to be creative, and ever since I was a little girl I really enjoyed making jewelry. I am also an entrepreneur at heart and loved the idea of having my own gig. When COVID hit in 2020, and we had to quarantine, I found myself needing an outlet more than ever. So I decided to start a business. The idea of starting my own business excited me for several reasons. It would give me the creative outlet I longed for and it could potentially provide a bit of income for our family. I also had a great desire to bring joy to people during trying times, and I hoped that my jewelry could inspire joy, even if it was in small doses. Read more>>