Even if you are from the same neighborhood as someone else, you might still be coming from different places. Where you are from is a complicated question and it elicits complicated, but interesting and thought-provoking responses. We’ve shared some of those responses below.

Melody Parra | Dimensional Color Specialist & Makeup Artist

I grew up in Southern California and honestly had a pretty rough childhood. From a young age, I knew I wanted to do hair and I graduated cosmetology right as I turned 18. I’ve always had to work hard for anything and everything I’ve wanted in life and that has molded me into an extremely driven adult. I’ve always been motivated to set goals and work for them and I’ve become really proud of who I am now that I’m older. Read more>>

Lex Mobley | Artistic Director & CFO, Half Moon Travel Clothing

My parents started their “travelwear” company in the 80s while still living in Denver and established a base of operations in the North Fork valley of Western Colorado. The same year I was born, they bought an allegedly haunted old building in downtown Delta and and turned it into a workshop. I was essentially raised there, among industrial sewing machines and skilled seamstresses, and in the Renaissance faires all over the country that were the main market for their products. Read more>>

Alea LoCascio | Baker & Business Owner

I’m from a upper middle class Italian family in Colorado Springs. I grew up surrounded by good food and a passion for cooking that was out of this world. Everyone in my family has a deep love for good food, so it wasn’t a shocked when I continued on with that as my career. While the love for food was definitely there, the home I grew up in was also very abusive and unfortunately I lost a lot of my childhood to that. When I finally left that home, it became a mission of mine to find something that made me happier than anything else to spend my life working on rather than continue the miserable cycle I came from. I’ve spent over 3 years working on changing my life to be focused on my passion, baking, and it has paid off in so many beautiful ways. Read more>>

Jayden Kazantsev | Founder and CEO of JMK Lawn Service, LLC

For the most, I have had a pretty happy and conventional upbringing. I spent the first nine years of my life on Whidbey Island in the Pacific Northwest. Those days were full of getting lost in the deep green shrubbery, jumping from tree to tree, creating magical miniature fairy villages, and enjoying pure, unbridled fun, generally by myself. Nature was my happy place and my one escape from my daily torture, which was school. Read more>>

Ali Rezgui | Boxing, Kickboxing & Muay Thai Coach

I was born and raised in Tunisia – a little country bordering the Mediterranean Sea on the African continent. At 17, I decided to move to France to discover a new country, culture, and people. Moving there on my own was difficult, but it taught me a great deal in a short amount of time. It taught me that if you want something badly enough, it can be accomplished. This is where I fell in love with boxing and made it my goal to someday live in the US, where so many boxing legends came from. While my upbringing has a lot to do with who I am, striking out on my own made me the person I am today – driven, relentless, dependent, and confident. Read more>>