October 15, 2010

Behind the Scenes with Leigh Rawdon and Women’s Initiative

Leigh, our co-founder and CEO just sent me this inspiring post:

On Tuesday, Emily and I were lucky enough to be honored as Women Entrepreneurs of the Year by Women’s Initiative for Self Employment. There were several women recognized including the talented women behind amazing brands like Peas of Mind and Minted. But the most inspiring woman of all (and I think every honoree and attendee would agree) was Nancy Charraga. So I wanted to share a little of her story:

Nancy came to the US from Chiapas, a southern state in Mexico. She wanted to preserve and share the cultures and traditions of Mexico through the products she sold. She started in flea markets but it wasn’t until she went through the training at Women’s Initiative that she developed a business plan and strategy. Like many other trainees in the program, Nancy fit the profile of high potential, low income. And like most graduates, she has been operating a successful, sustainable business for many years since.

Entrepreneurship is a passion of mine because of people like Nancy. People from all walks of life – whether students of a top business school or a recent immigrant in the Women’s Initiative training program – are able to create something from nothing. Entrepreneurship requires creativity, resourcefulness, and perseverance, and the results are independence, confidence, and a positive impact on the world around us.

Nancy Charraga now has a store, a wholesale business, and an event planning service. She employs dedicated women who are supporting their families. And she’s having a positive impact on the community around her. Every day, she fulfills her mission to Preserve & Promote Mexican Traditions through Fair Trade. She deserves last night’s award and many more for demonstrating the power and importance of entrepreneurship.

Nancy Charraga

Nancy Charraga

Learn more about Nancy and check out her store, Casa Bonampak online and if you’re ever in San Francisco’s Mission District. Emily and I are grateful to be included with Nancy and all of 2010′s Women’s Initiative honorees.