Girl em[Power]ment – Sarah Moshman

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

 

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the finishing profiles of the Girl em[Power]ment series, which has consisted of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but whom I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’re giving us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, sharing their advice for twenty-something’s, and touching on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

 

This week’s profile is about a woman who inspired me to finish my series – the creator of The Empowerment Project. As I explained with last week’s influencer, I was able to go to a screening of The Empowerment Project, about a group of women who traveled across the US interviewing several different women about empowerment. I was able to speak with the creators of this amazing film after the event, and then they both said yes to being profiled!

 

Introducing Sarah Moshman, documentary filmmaker.
Social Media:
@SarahMosh //twitter
@Sarahmoshman //instagram
Empowerment Documentary //facebook
Upcoming Documentary social:
Losing Sight of Shore //facebook
@LSOSFilm  //twitter
@losingsightofshore //instagram

 

Q: What is your current job title, and can you explain your career path?
A: I am a documentary filmmaker that is passionate about empowering women and girls through media! I grew up loving filmmaking and being behind the camera, I started making movies in middle school, then I went to film school and following that moved out to LA to pursue my dreams of working in TV and film professionally. I started out in reality TV, and worked as a field producer for shows on ABC, NBC, MTC, Lifetime, Bravo and The Food Network, but I missed telling stories that could really create impact. I made two short documentaries, [Girls Rock! Chicago, 2010 and Growing up Strong: Girls on the Run, 2012] then my first feature documentary was The Empowerment Project [watch trailer here] which is about inspirational women across the US and it has been screened all over the country and the world in schools, groups and organizations to start conversations about gender equality. Currently I’m directing my second feature doc called Losing Sight of Shore [watch trailer here] which follows the extraordinary journey of four women who set out to row the Pacific Ocean. I love telling stories about strong, inspirational women and I love my job.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: I went to the University of Miami in Coral Gables, FL and I majored in Video-Film and Psychology.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place, if at all?
A: I think as I’ve gotten older, I can better deal with moments of negativity in the workplace. When you’re first starting out, you are just happy to have the job and be able to pay your bills doing something you like doing. So often times there’s a fear of standing up for yourself and speaking out against discrimination or sexism. But when I would go home that evening, I would feel awful that I didn’t say anything and that I let it slide. It’s so important to let people know when they are making your work environment an unhealthy one, and to believe that if they knew they were upsetting you or someone else, they would hopefully stop that behavior. It’s tough, and every situation is different and every woman has to make that distinction when it comes up. We can all lead by example, and not take part in inappropriate behavior at work, and not allow those things to be done or said when we are the ones leading a team.

Q: Who are some of your role models or mentors, and why?
A: First and foremost my parents Diane and Harvey Moshman. My Dad is a filmmaker and TV producer as well so I have learned so much from him over the years about how to approach my career. He never made me feel like my gender would be an issue when working in this industry and that has empowered me in so many ways. My Mom worked as a chemical engineer and then switched careers to be a lawyer when I was a teenager. She always managed a great work-life balance and has been so encouraging to me.

I also admire Geena Davis and the tireless work she does for the way women are represented in the media. I admire women who stand up for what’s right, take chances in their career and who aren’t afraid to fail.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t enough, and how did you overcome that?
A: All the time! It’s very difficult to be a filmmaker because a lot of times you feel isolated and that the weight of your project rests on your shoulders. Some days are incredible, and some days you just want to hide under the covers and think about what it would be like to have a “normal job”. I struggle to appreciate the hard work I put in to something as it’s happening because I have so much work ahead of me. When I have those moments I think about the bigger picture. That my films are not about me, they are about other people. That my films are not about me, they are about the people I am trying to inspire. Take a break, take a breath, and keep pushing. You’ll get there.

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interests] that you feel passionate about?
A: I host empowerment circles every month to get women together to support each other to thrive in our careers. It’s very powerful and fills up my soul every time. I also host an event twice a year called The F Word Event where amazing speakers and performers come together to celebrate and discuss feminism in many forms. It’s awesome. I love teaching, and meeting with other filmmakers to encourage them to go forward in their projects. I attend tons of networking events and panels about filmmakers and creators. I’m interested in empowering media in all forms.

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: I love working out – going to spin class, yoga, pilates, bootcamp, etc. And just hanging with my husband Ryan and our dog Kuma. I’m a total homebody and my ideal evening would be cooking dinner and drinking wine with Ryan and watching Netflix.

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty year old self?
A: I would say save as much money as you can, and don’t be worried about anyone else’s path. You are writing your own story, no one else can write it for you. Focus on what makes you feel alive, and pursue that passion with your whole heart.

 Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment and overall empowerment mean to you?
A: Empowerment means being able to motivate and encourage yourself to go after any dream you can conceive of. Having the confidence and experience to know that it’s okay to fail, it’s okay to fall down as long as you get back up and keep going. Empowerment means not needing anyone else’s approval to make you feel whole. Find your own happiness and help others find theirs too. May we all feel that way in our lives and in our careers and lift each other up in the process.

 

If you know an incredible woman you think should be featured on the Girl Em[Power]ment series, email flannerylyle@gmail.com

Stay tuned for next week’s influencer, and thanks for following along!

xxo, flancake

Girl em[Power]ment – Dr. Ro Di Brezzo, pt. 1

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the finishing profiles of the  Girl em[Power]ment series, which has consisted of in person interviews with several women of all ages in different stages of their career and life, all in the North West Arkansas Area. These are women my peers and I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women are making a difference in several different areas, from being business owners, to changing their career paths, and embracing motherhood to the fullest. They’re giving us an inside look into what their occupation is like, how they got there, sharing their advice for twenty-somethings, and touching on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

To start the finishing of the series, I thought it was best to start with a woman I was able to meet while going to The Empowerment Project event, and whom I got to listen to speak. This woman was one of the women who single handedly inspired me to not only finish my series, but to also to really go out of my way to find incredible women in my community.

I was fortunate enough to be able to visit Dr. Di Brezzo for an inperson interview-something I thought would take about 30 minutes, but actually lasted for over an hour because we had so much to talk about and share. She is not only inspirational, but her great character and non-appologetic attitude really draws you in. I’m so, so excited to share with you all Dr. Di Brezzo’s Girl Em[Power]ment interview.

Introducing Dr. Ro Di Brezzo, Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Enhancement
[Website]

Q: What is your current job title and can you please explain your career path?
A: I’m Vice Provost for Faculty Development, which is a relatively new position on this campus, I was Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and one of the things I did in that position was for faculty initiatives, and it became pretty imperative that that was a full time job and we needed someone to do more for the faculty, so they created this position, and I’m learning while I’m going – since no one had the job before me.

In terms of how I got here, I am an incidental administrator. I never planned to be in administration and quite frankly I never wanted to be in administration. I have found that my whole life if you work hard, sometimes opportunities just come. Life has to be about a little bit of luck. That doesn’t mean that you don’t prepare yourself and talk to people, that you don’t plant seeds – but I think for the most part if you plan too much then you may miss other opportunities. I worked very closely with the provost during my two years on the faculty senate, and then it opened up and the provost opened up and asked me to take this position.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: So it’s kind of interesting because I went to twelve years of catholic school, and I realize now that going to an all girls catholic high school probably served me in a lot of ways. All the leadership roles were taken by women, so suddenly you were getting these messages early on that you could do anything you wanted. I went from a lot of structure to no structure [transitioning from catholic school to public universities]. I was not a very good undergraduate student if we’re being honest – I went to school to play ball, so that’s what I did, and when I got close to graduation I didn’t know what I was going to do so I wound up at Indiana University to get my masters degree. Then I coached for several years, and then got my doctorate at Texas Women’s University.

Q: Have you had any role models or mentors in your life?
A: Growing up I think I had a lot [of mentors], since I grew up in a traditional Italian family. Pretty much everybody follows the same script-but it just didn’t feel the same for me. My parents were probably afraid but didn’t voice it a lot, and thought ‘oh she’s the baby she’ll grow up different’. Growing up I played basketball and I wanted to be Roy Russell when I grew up – he’s a big tall black guy that played for the Boston Southerners. There was no part of me that could become him, but there were no women playing so I just liked him. I was lucky during my program that I had some really good professors that gave me some things to think about. Mostly though, I think it came from living with the people in my everyday life that. I don’t think I’m very bright, and so I know that my greatest asset is to learn from other people. For me, it’s not so much role models, it’s more of everyday looking at something and thinking how neat it was that they handled a situation. It’s really more of everyday people doing extraordinary things.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or that you weren’t enough, and how did you overcome that.
A: Oh, a lot. Even in my job, because so many bright people surround me. Sometimes I didn’t say things that I could’ve or I said things not as well as I wished. I think the only way to get through that though is to keep showing up. I just try and bounce back and not beat myself up. It also helps to have a sense of humor, and I work hard to find humor in all situations. It’s just the way you have to handles some things.

Q: What are other things, hobbies or interests, that you feel passionate about?
A: I love the outdoors, period. I do anything and everything I can to be outside. What I’ll do when I get overwhelmed is to remove stimulus – get things out of my head. I like to read, and I love to eat, so I hang out with people that like to cook. I just got a puppy, an Irish setter so that’s taking a lot of my time.

Q: Is there anyone you think that is making a difference in women’s empowerment that you think we should all know about?
A: There are some faculties on our campus that I think are making a difference. We have a couple of faculty that are such good teachers and care so much about the kids, and they would see themselves as very ordinary. For example, and this is just one – we have a faculty member named Lorraine Brewer who teachers chemistry – and it’s a tough course. She is so good with the students; I think she puts the kids at ease. She wouldn’t see herself as a hero, but she’s pretty terrific. There are so many of these people on our campus that don’t aspire to have some grand title.

Q: What career/life advice would you give to your twenty-year old self?
A: Cast a broad net. I think you grow up thinking ‘I could be anything’, and I mean it was pretty limited really.

Q: Do you think certain gender roles we learn when we’re children affect our self-confidence as we get older?
A: Of course. I think all of us – it’s what we’ve been exposed to. Exposing kids, particularly girls, to more things – there’s more possibilities. They can see themselves in those positions. Of course now it’s easier to be exposed with Google and smartphones – you just type in what you want to know. Exposing people to different things is very important. You don’t know kindness unless you’ve been exposed to kindness. You don’t know true love unless you’ve been with someone. It’s not just images; it’s the whole attitude that we need to adapt.

Q: What does Girl Em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: The complete and utter sense, and confidence, that you are okay and good right now. You don’t have to add anything to your life. Right now, you’re good enough. If we could just convince girls that it’s not about kicking this soccer ball into the goal or you don’t have to go to this party, you don’t have to have a boyfriend – right now you’re good, good enough.

 

To read the complete interview with Dr. Di Brezzo and Part 2, click here
[she really dives into some great feministic topics-it’s worth the read]

If you know an incredible woman you think should be featured on the Girl Em[Power]ment series, email flannerylyle@gmail.com

Check back next week to hear from another powerful influencer and business owner.

Xo, Flancake

 

Girl em[Power]ment – Dr. Ro Di Brezzo, pt. 2

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

a continuation of Dr. Ro Di Brezzo’s profile, with extended and off-the-record questions.

Q: Did you see a difference living in the different areas of the country of how people in general acted towards women?
A: While at Indiana University I had a cork board, and right in the middle was a picture of a man, from the New York paper, walking down wall street completely nude-wearing nothing but black socks and black dress shoes. The thing that was so crazy about the picture was not that this guy was nude walking down the street, but that all the people weren’t even looking at him. In New York, no one cares. So I grew up around that culture. There were so many differences, that nothing was different. At some level it encourages a higher tolerance, because people don’t look the same. They don’t act the same. You just realize that there’s a lot of ways to live.

When I moved to the Midwest I noticed there was no ethnic differences. But people were connected different in smaller cities than they are in New York. In NY, you’re connected in a sense that everyone values everyone’s privacy. So you don’t take a lot of time when talking to people or take up a lot of space. In these other cities, there’s a different sense of community. The people in NY rally around politics or sports, or something local that’s happening. In smaller communities, it’s tighter at some level but they do talk about each other.

 

Q: I remember at The Empowerment Project, you said you had written in a few publications, could you talk about that a little bit?
A: While on faculty, you can’t get tenure if you don’t write. And I was always interested in women, physiologically and mechanically, and when you read the literature – especially years ago, there was not much written about women. If there was, it was always about college-aged kids – and we would give them extra points-but life goes on after college, and I was interested in what happens after that. I’ve written a couple chapters in books, I’ve written quite a bit of research articles. During my career I found myself getting more and more interested in older women. It’s interesting because it’s “not cool” to get old if you’re an American, in every other culture, getting old is something that’s really valued. But in the American culture, we do a lot to look and act and sound younger. It’s kind of unfortunate, I think. I think we’re afraid of getting old – I think we’re afraid of looking old, we’re afraid of dying-a whole lot of things. But I’m intrigued. For me, it’s really fascinating how some people grow old cynically while some people grow old gracefully. Trying to figure that out is actually fascinating! It really is interesting how some people get old with this grace and wisdom about them, while others get old angrily.

 

Q: Do you feel like in other countries, getting older for women is viewed as something that has to do with gaining wisdom, as opposed to the American way?
A: Oh yes for sure. I have white hair, and throughout the years people have commented about my hair-and I suspect that if I colored it I would look younger, and people that do color their hair do look good, but for me it’s just-do I want to do that every 6 weeks for two weeks? And inevitably I wouldn’t plan [my appointments] and then my roots would be all over the place-so I just didn’t do it. It’s just interesting how people comment about it, and how it’s one of the things we do to look young. As opposed to looking healthy and happy, people worry about looking young. And in our culture-where are our old people – where are they on TV? In the media? They’re not around. Even when we sell products to older people, the people buying the products aren’t really the ones on TV. They’re not the ones who’ve actually fallen down and can’t get up.

During my other job, I worked with physically impaired individuals, and that’s another aspect that isn’t represented in the media. We’ve been at war for a long time now, and have had so many veterans that are coming back, and we see so many veterans with one leg or some kind of prosthesis. But before that, you didn’t really see people that were a-typical. Yet we know they’re there, so it’s an interesting culture-it’s almost like we feel bad if we see someone who looks different. We have a tendency to where we don’t want to stare but we kind of do want to stare, and I think that’s more American. I don’t think that’s as common in other cultures, where people are integrated better. In the absence of seeing it, it’s hard to see what it’s like-or to know it or live it if it’s not in front of you. I think that’s why it’s so hard for women and girls. They grow up thinking of these models-they know that they’re airbrushed, kids know it-but it doesn’t mean anything, because they’re not seeing them airbrushed. They know intellectually that they’re doing makeup and covering up imperfections, but they still see perfection-therefore thinking that they should be perfect. We’re starting to see shows like The Voice, where they don’t see the person’s appearance at first-and maybe because that’s such a hit and the message is so powerful maybe others will follow, little by little. It’s hard.

 

Q: Do you think other countries have a better handle on women’s portrayal in the media?
A: Of course it’s a dilemma all over the world, but in other countries grandparents are so involved with the family. You see grandparents a lot more-in America some people see their grandparents and some don’t. You don’t see that as much in Europe. Houses tend to stay in families for generations. There’s more of intergenerational stuff, and when there’s more intergenerational stuff you see people more realistically. Here, media is so powerful – and I suspect it is in other places, but just not as much. It’s so commercialized.

 

Q: Have you dealt with any negativity in the workplace because you are a woman?
A: I think when discrimination is over; it’s painful – but the only advantage is that it’s in your face. In my situation, I think more times than not, the subtleness of how people react to a women, it’s even more insidious – it’s even more dangerous. You’re always sitting there wondering if you got this promotion because I’m a woman, or was I added to this conversation because I’m a woman? Sometimes the problem isn’t men, sometimes the problem is we as women – is our expectation for these men. We obviously say different things to boys than we say to girls – we expect them to be strong, and we’re comforted when they take over a situation – but we’re frustrated when they do take over that situation. I think the conversations have to be parallel. We need to be talking to our little boys as much as we’re talking to our little girls.

I think we have to make it safe for both of them to come a little closer to the middle. If we have a boy that doesn’t want to play sports-the world is not going to come to the end. I think the conversations have to change so that it’s ok for our boys not to always have it all together. And then the other point is that we really have to teach people to find the inner “I’m going to be okay”. When the whole world goes to hell and a hand basket, we’ve got to have that little voice inside that says “this is a feeling and it’s going to pass and tomorrows going to be a good day”.

When we need external reinforcement, we’re doomed to fail. We need external feedback, but that’s different than external reinforcement. Girls shouldn’t ‘tell me I’m okay’; I need to know that I’m okay.

 

Q: Do you feel like social media and media in general is bad for younger girls?
A: Social media always has and always will have a responsibility. We used to think smoking was glamorous-it was in every movie, everyone looked sexy while they were doing it. When we realized how bad it was for us, it was a conscious decision to pull back from that. With that being said, I’m frustrated with how when something happens-and you listen to it on the media on two different news channels, how different the same event or quote will be reported. How can that be? It’s their job to report what happened – not to editorialize. We’ll have a debate – say the president makes a state of the union address, and then we listen to TV where the guy tells us what he just said. You don’t have to tell me what he just said, I just listened to this?

I think we keep waiting for things to get more and more digestible. If something happens and it takes an hour, I want you to tell me in twelve seconds or less. Make it palatable; make it understandable – and then what’s the new story. They’ll take a sentence from a political candidate, and then you’ll see it on the TV over and over again. But there’s a whole story on this sentence, so can they not report the whole story for why they said that? People don’t have any patience for that anymore. We’re all hurting and I don’t understand where we’re going, because we’re not going to get there any faster.

This is what I love about getting older, people talk about the meaning of life – and don’t think I’m going to say something profound. What I do know is that what we’re doing right now in the moment! It’s sort of like we’re all waiting for something big to come, and this is it, today! There is never enough, and it took me a really long time to figure that out. You don’t even realize you’re doing it. I had a really good friend that was in the doctoral program with me who was a few years younger than me, and almost overnight we found out she had stage four cancer and lasted two months. Here we are just working our asses off in the doctoral program – it’s all about when we get out, when, when, when. Then a few years ago, my brother’s son was killed in a car accident. He was a junior engineering student – a bright kid, he played the sax, was a surfer. When I did the eulogy, which was one of the hardest things I ever did, I just looked out in the crowd and said some people are not meant to be on this earth a very long time. So you really don’t have any of these guarantees. Anytime something traumatic happens we slow up for a day, maybe a week-and then we get back into it. It’s crazy, because this is it-have a good time today.

So it’s that time of year again when March Madness is happening. Instead of thinking about the destination, which would be winning, why don’t we think about the journey it took to get there? Or for spring break – you’ll drive 20 hours to get somewhere. Shouldn’t that be part of the destination also? People drive really fast to get there, we should enjoy the journey.

 

Check back next Sunday for another Girl em[Power]ment profile!

Xx, Flancake

 

 

Girl em[Power]ment – Anna E. Cottrell

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them .

[be sure to follow along on insta – @girlempowerment]

I’ve been waiting to share today’s influencer for a long time now, as she was one of the original women who inspired the series. I first met Anna in person forever ago at a fashion event, but I had been following her and her blog for much longer. Our paths finally crossed when I decided that I wanted to somehow get involved in what she was doing with Lola last year. Fast forward – she has now been my lady boss for almost a year now [insert a happy eek here!] and I’ve learned SO much under her fabulous wings. She’s taught myself and the others around her what perseverance looks like – that it you want something you’ve got to not only hustle to get it, but also put forth a positive attitude and be kind to get it. Anna is always open to new ideas [even when I think she’ll think I’m cray-cray], and even if she’s not totally into, she’ll help you to make it bigger and better. She is always looking to uplift those around her, she is always teaching myself and the other Lola gals that although perfection isn’t real – being the absolute best you can is absolutely attainable. Oh, and along with all that she’s accomplished so much in her career, and is more than happy to share advice daily.

Introducing Anna E. Cottrell, owner of Lola and Tulip Louise.
Website + Blog: ShopLola.comTulip Louise.com
Insta: @lolaboutique + @tuliplouise 

Q: What is your current job title and can you please explain your career path?
A: First off, hi flannery!  Thank you so much for having me.  My name is Anna and I am the owner of Lola.  I always knew that I wanted to be in the fashion world from a very young age– it was just in my blood.  I have vivid memories of when mom would take me ‘back to school shopping’ before the start of a new year and I would get home as quickly as I could with my new loot and a simple spiral notebook.  From there, I would work to stretch my new clothes into as many different outfits as possible, try them on [down to the accessories], and jot down every detail of my final look.  Once I wore it, I would mark it out in my little notebook.  As it turns out this is eerily similar to what I do for personal styling appointments now!  I digress.  

[Focus, Anna] Career path.  I interned at Findings Showroom in New York for my college internship, which is when I first fell in love with the pace of the city– even though I was filing, faxing, getting coffee, wheeling massive trunks to the Javits Center for market, etc… I couldn’t have been more energized x this was when I paid my dues.  First job out of college was with the e-commerce division at Neiman Marcus in Dallas, Texas.  Having zero background in .com at the time, this was a major leap of faith [on both parts!] that I accepted as a learning experience and [quite frankly] for the chance to add a powerhouse of a company to my résumé.  So small-minded. While the cubicle life didn’t turn out to be my jam, I learned endless lessons about workplace professionalism and company protocol within a corporate environment [i.e. e-mail etiquette, managing an editorial calendar, balancing workload, etc . ].   Honestly, just to be a fly on the wall and learn how the “big dogs” communicated was a major turning point for me , for instance the opportunity to sit in on calls with David Yurman about  new products that needed to be uploaded by a certain holiday deadline .  It was fun to be a point person between the buying office, graphic designers, copywriters, marketing department, and vendors– this opened my eyes to many different avenues within the fashion industry, and also the importance of everyone having a niche x working together for a bigger goal. Pretty cool now that I think about it.  

Hitting your first career stride out of college is kind of like having your first love– there’s nothing that can compare to the growth you experience, and you find yourself eternally grateful because it taught you so much about yourself. 

When I was in Dallas, I became even more interested in learning about the arts–spending weekends over wine + french film, gallery openings or the Nasher Sculpture Museum [still a favorite].  When I moved back home to Northwest Arkansas, it was to be the Web Director at a local boutique.  Note: I said “Web Director” as if there was an existing site, but there wasn’t.  However! This was an amazing opportunity to enter into a small business and try to make a big difference with an e-commerce site, by utilizing what I had learned at NM.COM— it was a fabulous time in my career.  

A couple of years later, I decided to turn what was then a hobby of blogging x styling, into my full-time gig… Enter: Tulip Louise.  This was a life of hustle. It was creatively stimulating because I was shooting with talented photographers x makeup artists for the blog non-stop, getting endorsed / written up, started covering backstage at New York Fashion Week for Revlon every season + getting some publicity, rubbing shoulders with some of the greats, and then brands started sending me things to wear.  Before I knew it, all of my shoots were subtly endorsing things that I hadn’t hand-selected for myself, which is when blogging began to lose it’s luster for me.  I needed to take a break and press the reset button on it.  Fast forward a couple of years, and I’m living back in New York as a freelance Art Director… but on the weekends shooting blog photos eating / endorsing a new Wendy’s frosty [huh?] — I guess it paid the rent, ladies.

In 2013, I returned home to my native Northwest Arkansas as owner, buyer, and creative director of Lola.  I remember telling my now business partner that I felt that my experiences in the industry [showroom, e-commerce, marketing, blogger, stylist, business owner] had melded together to help best prepare me for this peak opportunity!  Now, only a mere two years later, Lola has a beautiful e-commerce site x will be opening the doors to a third storefront this month.  Whirlwind, but none of the growth we’ve experienced would ever have been possible without the tremendous x inspiring team we have [including you, Flannery!]

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: I studied fashion x marketing at the University of Arkansas. 

Q: How/or do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place? 
A: You know, Flannery, there was a time in my life when I would have had time to dwell or deal with negative people x thoughts, but I just don’t anymore.  I was telling someone recently that something shifted when I turned 30– ha — unless someone [or something] is additive to my life x what happiness I’m working towards, it has to go. We only get so many days on this planet, and I have less and less tolerance for toxicity. I know it sounds harsh, but it truly just isn’t worth the energy– I’d rather spend that priceless time with people that I love, or working to build something great… instead of devoting energy to anything negative. It is a conscious effort I make every day.  If you knew me a couple of years ago, you’d know this is a new lease on life for me!

Q: Who are three of your role models or mentors, and why?
A1: My mom, Jill.  If you’ve ever met her, you’re lucky enough to know why she is a great role model. She is unbelievably kind x thoughtful x warm.  Family and  faith is everything to her, and I would be lucky to become half the woman she is.


A2: Jeannette Balleza Collins.  This woman is a powerhouse.  She is so eloquent, as business savvy as they come, and has a pure heart of gold.  Just an overall lovely human, that makes me want to be better.


A3: Jade Terminella. She is the perfect no nonsense counterpart. A woman with a strong moral compass, get sh*t done work ethic, and gentle soul.


Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”?
A: Oh, of course!  Some days are harder than others, which is why we have to encourage women in our network.  Life is hard… but really beautiful.


Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: Photography, art, travel.  I used to be really into music — would like to get back to that.


Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: When I get the chance, I honestly live for a spa moment; manicure, pedicure, facial, or massage?  Sign me up.  Totally the way to my heart.


Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty year old self?
A: 1- Always go the extra mile– it is so worth it.  2- Life can be very tricky, but keep your chin up– one day, all of those little twists x turns will make sense.  

I hope you thoroughly enjoyed Anna’s profile. She’s an incredible driven woman with such a drive for what she does! Hopefully we can all catch a bit of this spirit.
Stay tuned for Sunday’s profile – you won’t want to miss it!

Xo, Flancake

Girl em[Power]ment – Sandra Johnson MD, FAAD

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

[be sure to follow along on insta – @girlempowerment]

I’m so excited to introduce to you a women that has quite literally changed my life, who I’m so honored agreed to participate in the Girl em[Power]ment series. But first, a quick story about myself [warning: it’s about to get real].

Usually middle school is a terrible time for teens – they must endure all kind of weird hormones, it’s a terribly awkward time with boys and mean girls, oh – and on top of that, acne is usually a huge problem. With all that said, I honestly did not have it that bad in middle school. High school is when the acne came. Thankfully I really never had problems with self-confidence because of my skin [I know several people that have…], but I still wanted to express myself through makeup and fashion, which was hard with my pimply skin. I would’t dare let it show, but I was so embarrassed about my skin. All my friends had already had their awkward faze, so I couldn’t understand why it was just happening to me.
Enter Dr. Johnson, whom my mother had been going to see for a long time. Since my skin wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been, first we tried laser treatment. This procedure was reserved mostly for events – like prom and homecoming, as it would cause your skin to “swell up” and be virtually perfect the day after treatment. This worked – for a while. Next were the pills. I’ve taken almost every kind of acne treatment drug out there. They all worked – for a while, but then my pimples would eventually come back. They were always there, not in full force – but still there.
Finally, during my freshman year of college, I walked in one day and Dr. Johnson sat down with mom and I to talk about Accutane [I won’t go into detail about that experience – but it was ultimately SO worth it]. We decided this was what I needed to do to once and for all get rid of the lingering acne. It was a 6 month long process that was rather intensive, but the results honestly were life changing. Throughout the whole experience, Dr. Johnson was by my side making sure everything was how it should be and to make sure my mental state was in check as well. After the Accutane, I didn’t really have the boost of the “self-confidence factor” like some people did, but I was so much happier with my overall image. Dr. Johnson really helped me get to where I knew I wasn’t perfect, but happy with the skin I am in.

The fact that she has helped SO many men and women realize their full potential is remarkable. She has not only taught me to really wear sunscreen every day, but to also embrace my creative side. Every time I get to visit with her she’s always genuinely interested in what I’ve got going on – making her an incredible Girl em[Power]ment influencer that I’m so excited to share with you all.
Oh, and she has over 50 publications, has written a book, has two patents, and has been in numerous magazine write ups. So yeah, she’s got it going on.

Introducing Dr. Sandy Johnson, MD, FAAD, of Johnson Dermatology 
Website – JohnsonDermatology.com
Facebook – Johnson Dermatology

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: I am a board certified Dermatologist and co-business owner of Johnson Dermatology [with my husband who is also a board certified Dermatologist]. I knew from at least the age of 5 that I wanted to be a doctor. I went to Our Lady of Mt Carmel from preschool until 8th grade. I went to Niles McKinley High School for 9th through 12th grades. These are both in Niles Ohio. I then entered a combined 6 year college and medical school program at Youngstown State University and Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, NEOUCOM. I graduated in 1996 then moved to Little Rock Arkansas for Dermatology residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, UAMS. After completing training, I stayed on faculty at UAMS specializing in cosmetic dermatology and clinical trials for 4 more years. I then moved back to Ohio for my husband Brad to complete a 2 year Dermatologic surgery fellowship. We moved to our permanent home and his childhood home in Greenwood/Fort Smith Arkansas in 2006 to open Johnson Dermatology. I am thoroughly enjoying this journey.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: I choose to see only the positive whenever possible. If and when a negative thought is encountered, I try to think of at least 3 positive thoughts. Currently those are:
1. As Bryan Adams says: “Ain’t no use complaining when you got a job to do”. So I try to keep doing my job.
2. As [my husband] Brad says “quality always and eventually wins”. So I try to always do the right thing and give my best.
3. As Taylor Swift says “haters gonna hate”. So I try to shake it off. I really enjoy running and dancing.

Q: Who are your role models or mentors that you look up to?
A: My parents: They taught me the value of hard work. They taught me to love God and family. I still rely on them for so much in life. They moved from Ohio to our backyard in Arkansas to help us with our children. I am forever indebted to them.
Dr. Bob Brodell is why I chose Dermatology. He has inspired me in so many ways. His love for the skin is contagious. He exudes positive energy.
My mother in law. She is a testament to the fact that if you work hard, dreams will come true. She also taught me how to be a woman in the workplace. She also still can do more push-ups and pull-ups than I can.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”, and how did you overcome that?
A: The first experience that comes to mind was when I was college chemistry and the professor made a comment about how women struggle with the concepts.  I had some self-doubt but was determined to give my best.  A few years later, his wife was sick in the hospital.  It was a big ego booster when I was a student in a team of all women doctors and nurses caring for her. 

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: I love my family which I why I chose a picture of us for this blog.  The best decision I ever made in my life was to marry Brad Johnson.  He makes me a better person.  I love him and his family [trust me: you not only marry the person but you also marry their family].  He is a wonderful business and life partner. 

I am happiest when my physical, spiritual, emotional and mental aspects are all in harmony.  It is important to me to take time to thank a higher power for my gifts [for me that is God] as well as to get some physical activity on a regular basis. 

Q: Is there anyone you think that is making a difference in women empowerment that you think we should all know about?
A: I really enjoyed the book Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg.  I enjoy following Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls on Facebook.  I try to surround myself with strong beautiful women.  Our Dermatopathologist Dr. Amy Hudson recently shared a quote with our team at Johnson Dermatology that is poignant:  girls compete with each other; women empower each other. 

I am very thankful for all of the teachers that empowered me when I was in school.  Most notably, Mrs Rathburn who was my high school biology teacher who encouraged me to follow my dreams and apply to medical school.  I would also like to thank my mom and the other moms in my hometown who coached the first all-girls soccer team in our town.  Playing youth sports was a very important motivator and confidence builder for me.  I would like to thank every teacher, coach, counselor, educator and friend to our youth. 

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: I relax and recharge by spending time with family and friends, running [I have run 8 marathons], and praying.  I also really enjoy travelling. 

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Follow your heart.  I love what I do and don’t feel like this is work.  I am blessed that I am paid to do what I love. Enjoy the journey but be careful—I am thankful the internet was not around when I was 20 years old. Enjoy dating but take your marriage partner seriously.  My life is so much better after meeting and marrying Brad Johnson. One of my life mottos is “Your life is God’s gift to you.  What you do with it is your gift to God.” 

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: It means exceeding the wishes that my mom had for me while being the person I would like my daughter to emulate.  It means climbing the ladder while bringing up others with me and even pushing them to rise past me.  It means always giving your best and giving it with a smile.  Our unpublished mission at Johnson Dermatology is to do everything with the 3 E’s:  Effective [do it right], Efficient [do it right the first time] and Empathic [do it with caring].   I am thinking we may need to add a fourth E: Empower. 

Girl em[Power]ment – Sabrina

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

[don’t miss a post–follow along on insta @girlempowerment]

For this week’s influencer’s [Sun + Mon], I’ll be featuring lady doctors that both have their own establishments. These women have done incredible things and have accomplished so much, so I’m ecstatic to share them with you.

Our next influencer is someone I’ve known for a while, as she’s one of my mother’s good childhood friends. When I first met Sabrina, the first thing I noticed was her awesome style and then how intelligent she was–which I really admired. She also is hilarious with dry humor that only some people get, but that’s the great thing about knowing her. Oh, and she was recently named one of the best plastic surgeons in America–I’m so excited for you all to learn about and hear from Sabrina.

Introducing Sabrina Lahiri , of Lahiri Plastic Surgery
Website – Lahiri Plastic Surgery 

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: I have been a Plastic and Reconstructive surgeon since 2002. I own my solo practice which includes a full service facility. During my years in private practice, I developed and built a facility which houses my practice, full service medical spa, overnight stay hotel, certified and licensed surgery center. My career path started at a young age. I knew early that I wanted to become a doctor. I attended University of California, Berkeley receiving a bachelor’s degree in Bioresource Science. I then attended University of Arkansas Medical School, followed by 5 years of General Surgery training at University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio and 2 years of Plastic Surgery training at University of Miami.

After all of this training, I opened my private practice in 2002 – It has been a busy whirlwind since.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: Negativity toward me specifically as a woman has been apparent during my schooling, training, and private practice. Women are still expected to maintain very traditional roles. These expectations are difficult to change in our modern society. Because many ambitious women balance family and career they are perceived as not serious about success. Because many women are accomplished without a family they are perceived as unusual.

I handled negativity with the best attitude that I could. It is important to perceive negativity as the other person’s problem/issue not yours. You can’t let it affect you personally, have to learn to process it mentally and move forward. It is important for women to prove themselves with their intelligence, drive, and insight and not get caught up negativity.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”, and how did you overcome that?
A: I think everyone has insecurities about themselves at times, but that is normal human nature. Successful women learn that life will have up and downs, successes and failures. We learn important lessons from all of these. It is important to maintain confidence in your talents and passion.

Q: Who are your role models or mentors that you look up to?
A: My mom and dad.

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: I have had many interests and hobbies outside of work, it is important to maintain balance in your life. I love horseback riding. I have a passion for attending any sporting event, collecting artwork, and fashion.

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: Exercise, watching sports, reading, studying fashion.

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Follow your heart and passion in life and work. If you don’t have a true passion for your career choice, it will be difficult to enjoy work on a daily basis. Enjoy every day to its fullest. Be confident. I am lucky to have found a career that is my passion.

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: Girl em[Power]ment means that women and girls can achieve anything a man can. Women influence the world everyday and in countless ways.

There you have it. I think it’s so important to remember that women and girls really can achieve anything a man can. Stay tuned for Wednesdays post, featuring another [awesome] lady Dr.
Xo, Flannery

Girl em[Power]ment – Natalie Navis

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

[be sure to follow along on insta – @girlempowerment]

Our next influencer is someone I’ve been so honored to get to know through Lola, who really taught me several things not only about the creative world, but in life in general. Natalie Navis has had an unconventional career path, but never the less it’s so inspiring. She is one of the most giving humans I know, always putting others before herself [sometimes when she shouldn’t!]. She is also so positive, her contagious energy is like wildfire. When I started this series, she was on my list of women who really inspired it as a whole.

Introducing Natalie Navis, of NatalieNavis.com
Insta – @natalienavis
Blog – NatalieNavis.com/blog
Website – NatalieNavis.com

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: Self-employed style blogger + wardrobe stylist + brand consultant, former attorney, and probably something else [TBD!]

I currently run my style blog and wardrobe styling business, which I’ve been working on in addition to my day jobs for four years now. I’m so excited to say that i’ve recently added freelance brand consultant to the mix! I’ve been assisting small businesses, particularly in the boutique beauty and retail industries, with brand development and an assortment of strategies that go along with that, including social media strategy and management, e-commerce development, creative direction of photoshoots, event production, merchandise planning, and more. It’s been so rewarding to help other girl bosses grow their businesses. My career path to this point has been anything but traditional! Prior to working in the fashion sales industry, I was an attorney. I attended law school right out of college, graduated, passed the bar exam, and worked for about four years as a research attorney for judges at the trial and appellate court levels. While the career was extremely rewarding intellectually, I felt that the introverted nature of my position did not fit my personality. I will always be grateful for my legal education and experience for giving me confidence in all business endeavors— and my strong backbone! When the judge I was working for during my fourth year retired, I knew the time was right to take a leap of faith into the fashion industry— something i’ve always wanted to do. I started working as a key holder/senior sales specialist for standard style [standardstyle.com] in Kansas City. I jumped in head-first, wore as many hats as possible, and learned so much during this first year. The company has had huge success growing their in-house line, Baldwin [baldwin.co], and it’s a privilege to say that I got my start there. Next, I moved to Lola [shoplola.com] in Fayetteville, Arkansas, to be the retail director and flagship manager. Again, I learned so much about the industry and about myself during this time, and I will always be grateful for the experience I gained and relationships I built. While living in Fayetteville, I became a certified Barre3 instructor [barre3.com], and that role remains extremely important to me. Although it was very difficult, I recently relocated back to my hometown so that I could embark on the next phase of my journey. My motto lately has been this quote: “every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being redirected to something better.” It takes courage, but I believe that you have to let your path reveal itself to you— even if that means going through some transitional phases in life.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: I graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Law with my J.D. in 2009. Prior to that, I attended Creighton University and Graduated with my Bachelor of Arts degree in English in 2006. I was a total literature nerd in college— fitzgerald is still my favorite. Creighton is a liberal arts college and I was exposed to so many different paths while there, but when I graduated I was unsure about what I wanted to do. At my dad’s suggestion, I figured “why not go to law school?” I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the “why not?” attitude for everyone when it comes to law school. Generally, it’s a means to an end [practicing law]. But if you are a lover of learning, then law school is an incomparable education in how to think, read, write and communicate. While I’m not currently practicing law, I use my legal education daily in my approach to communication and all business matters that arise in life— and there are a lot! I feel more confident in my career because of my law degree, and that’s invaluable, particularly when you’re an entrepreneur.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: More often than “negativity” towards women in the work place, I see “inequality” towards women in the work place— and obviously inequality is a negative. I’m a believer that women have a long way to go in our society. The reality that we have never had a female president, that there are very few women CEO’s in Fortune 500 companies, and that females on business panels aren’t being asked the same questions as their male counterparts [see here— posted by flancake on facebook!], makes it clear that we have not achieved equality. inequality towards women in the work place is highly dependent on the industry you work in. for example, I saw much more evidence of inequalities in the legal field [a male dominated profession] than in fashion [a female dominated profession], but that’s part of the problem. In the midwest, law is often seen as a more respectable, high-powered career than fashion, and therefore more suited to women— regardless of the huge amount of capital generated by the fashion and apparel industry in our country. I believe all industries should be gender neutral, and that women and men should be equals in any industry, from law to fashion. Unfortunately, I have dealt with a fair amount of comments from male superiors during my career that I qualify as sexist. My best advice? Stand up for yourself and call out those comments. Don’t ignore them or [ever] laugh.

Q: Who are your mentors or role models, and why?
A: My babcia [“grandmother” in polish]: She’s a WWII labor camp survivor and immigrant to the US, and is still independent at age 90. She made a life for herself in america, learned to speak broken english, and raised three successful children while an uneducated, poor immigrant. Seeing life through her eyes gives immigration a whole new meaning to me. She exemplifies survival, independence, and determination. I know my strength comes from her— and probably my [sometimes] feisty nature too!

My mom: she’s been an educator for 25 years at the college level. She believes in teaching her students how to think, not what to think. The other day, she was commenting that the test given by her department had been “dumbed down” to the point where it would be easy for the students to pass it, just so that the instructors could say they were successful in teaching. My mom wouldn’t give that test, or at the least wouldn’t let it count for much of her students’ grades. She won’t lower the bar for anyone and sees potential in everyone, no matter their race, gender, or background. She has taught me how to approach everyone I meet in life with the same level of respect and that we are all capable of so much more than we think.

Megan hurley: owner of barre3 fayetteville and my former employer. This woman is a champion for all women [and men], has a heart of gold, and is the definition of “real.” She balances owning her successful business with being a full-time mom to two boys, and does it with such grace. no matter what, she makes the time for others. She has created the most nourishing community where all clients come to feel their best, physically and mentally. If you’re in the fayetteville area, you have to attend one of her life-changing classes. She is the one who asked me to become a Barre3 instructor [not once, but twice!], had faith in me when i didn’t have it in myself, and mentored me as a grew. Because of her, I became invested in Barre3, a company that helps its clients lead a balanced life through fitness, nutrition, and mental wellbeing, while fighting for real beauty. You can see Barre3 founder Sadie Lincoln’s words on that topic here.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”, and how did you overcome that?
A: All the time, every day at least once. I have battled depression and anxiety for much of my life, and while I’m sure I would experience feelings of uncertainty and inadequacy regardless, these feelings can be even more amplified and often. It does help to know that I’m not alone and that we all, as humans, feel uncertain of ourselves at times. My faith is a large part of me being able to get through times when my feelings of uncertainty and inadequacy are the most severe. My other grandmother, who passed away this past Spring, taught me about the importance of faith, and the peace that can be found in turning my worries, doubts, and fears over to God. I also have extremely supportive family members and friends who encourage me when I doubt myself. My ability to overcome feelings inadequacy is due in part to their unconditional love. The real relationships I’ve built throughout my life mean the world to me, and it’s these relationships that I come back to during times of self-doubt. That and turning off all social media for a while, because “comparison is the thief of joy” and we all need to remember that social media is a place where people create their perfect lives [probably not the best place to go when you’re feeling down about your own].

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: I have always been passionate about the arts. I grew up playing piano [and later teaching piano lessons at a local arts and music studio] and dancing [classical ballet and modern]. I was a member of a local modern dance company all the way up until moving to KC in 2013. Barre3 has been my substitute for dance since then, and I’ve become very passionate about a living a balanced life through fitness, nutrition, and mental health. It goes without saying that fashion is a major interest of mine— I guess obsession might be a more accurate term. For me, my love for fashion goes beyond an appreciation of it as the main form of creative self-expression. To me, fashion is empowerment. It’s dressing yourself in a way that makes you stand taller, walk more boldly, and take on life with confidence and enthusiasm. Fashion has so much transformative power, it just has to be harnessed. I also have a heart for a serious cause facing our society today: mental healthcare. My legal career opened my eyes to the gravity of this issue, and I’m committed to making a difference and working on behalf of this cause. One thing I think we can all do is be gentle with each other. This quote is so true: “be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”— and most of the time, you have no concept of how great that battle may be.

Q: Is there anyone you think that is making a difference in women empowerment that you think we should all know about?
[Natalie is too kind, I tell you.]
A: How about you, miss flannery wilson?! You, my dear, are making a difference in women empowerment by creating this series! I am so inspired when I see young women in your generation who realize the significant platform that you have in being a blogger and woman in the fashion industry, and using this platform to work for a greater cause than self-advancement. Don’t get me wrong, i’m all for girl bosses advancing themselves and showing the world how powerful women can be, but when a woman uses that audience to advance a greater cause, that’s what’s truly inspiring. You’re a perfect example of a woman who has a heart for making a true difference for others. This women empowerment series demonstrates that you are going to do big things in this life that really matter, and I’m so excited to see your future unfold!

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: Relax? What’s that? [just kidding.] I’m working on getting better at this. I love to go to barre, yoga, and dance classes, go for long walks outside [preferably with my family dog, but I’ll borrow pretty much anyone’s pup as long as he or she walks on a leash], read blogs, read books, and be a social butterfly. Ok fine…. and drink wine and watch netflix and eat nutella out of the jar [there, I said it].

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Well, I have the benefit of having a brother who is 22 years old, so I give him the same advice that I would give myself at his age: it’s ok to have a plan for your life or a roadmap or a path that you think your life is going to take, but you have to recognize that life quite possibly won’t go according to that plan, and that’s going to be fine— you will survive. Don’t try to control everything or you’ll go insane. Embrace the journey and let life take it’s course. Even though it’s really hard, try not to let the detours or barriers dampen your spirit. Keep persevering on, and try to enjoy the moments along the way. Life really is a crazy ride.

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: Girl em[Power]ment means both self-empowerment and helping to empower other women. While I love to read style blogs and I so admire the greats in the fashion industry, the women I truly respect are the ones who are making a difference for other women. I’ll be the first to admit that style and creativity are very admirable traits, but it’s ultimately what you do with those gifts that makes you great. Girl em[Power]ment is about using your talents, gifts, and skills to do something great for yourself AND for other women— working for a cause, standing for a marginalized population, bringing attention to a significant social issue, etc. I say, while you’re building that empire, why not empower other women along the way?