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.

Emily Mckissick Diaz | CEO & Founder

I grew up in a small town in Southern Colorado. I came from a very loving family of 6. We were all very supportive of one another. Especially when my sister was born with Down syndrome. This brought our family closer together. My parents always supported the idea that education, consistency, and following our passions would be the key to our freedom. I decided then that I was going to make a big impact on the world. I thought that if I was able to become an influencer on a larger platform that I would ultimately be able to inspire more individuals to pursue their passions and purpose in life. So I decided to follow a career in soccer. I began playing at a very young age and worked my way to a starting position that came with a full-ride scholarship at a Division 1 college in Denver. Shortly after I earned that position, my dream to play in college and beyond dissipated due to a knee injury. Read more>>

Dakota Bogner | Wedding and Event Planner

I am from really small, rural, agricultural community in northeastern Colorado where my family runs a six-generation farm. Growing up on a farm taught me so much about the importance of work ethic, loving what you do, entrepreneurship, and building a really positive reputation. Those are things that I’ve held onto and truly couldn’t have started my own business with any confidence otherwise. My upbringing also taught me that you don’t have to just do one thing with your life. Growing up my family members all had dreams of their own, outside of agriculture and the family business, and they all went after those dreams. My dad spent many years running the local volunteer fire department, my brother coached high school basketball, and my mom got her Ph.D. – all while operating a massive farming operation. They taught me that you can be passionate about more than one thing, be gifted in more than one area, and pursue more than one dream. Read more>>

Melinda Warner | Gardener & Leader

I was raised the daughter of a baptist minister in rural Iowa. Folks from Iowa value hard work, honesty, privacy, integrity, and respect for others. I witnessed the depth of devotion, grit, tenacity and love of others through my family and the families around me in this small town atmosphere. My parents raised me to work hard and have a deep respect for others. Often my Dad worked in the church during the day, then another job in the evenings to support our family. My Mom raised five children and also worked part time. We knew they loved us and did all they could to keep our family happy, healthy and safe. Life was good growing up in Iowa. I am proud of my small town roots. As a young girl in Iowa I witnessed the small family farmer face challenges that could make or break them. The long days and hard work they put in was impressive to say the least. I remember the joy these families shared. They worked as a team. Read more>>