I’m very excited to share my conversation with my friend Rosemary Connors: an award-winning anchor and reporter for NBC10 News in Philadelphia. You can watch her live weekday reports and see her anchoring the weekend mornings!

Rosemary is 35 years old, married, and from right outside of Philadelphia. We both attended the Academy of Notre Dame in Villanova, where she just gave the commencement speech to the graduating seniors on June 1st! She is my fourth guest to attend the Academy of Notre Dame, following Martie Gillin (Founder of SpeakUp), Maureen Doran (founder of Skirt Boutique), and September Rinnier (Co-founder Tuckernuck). She then went on to the University of Pennsylvania—where I also went—so this was a really fun conversation for me, given that Rosemary and I have a similar background.

Throughout our conversation, Rosemary tells us all about her journey in the news industry. Her climb to an established position in Philadelphia did not happen overnight, but she has stayed the course over the past 13 years. She started from the bottom right out of college and dove headfirst into the industry. She began her career in Grand Junction, Colorado and then Fort Myers, Florida before making her way back to Philadelphia. We talk about the setbacks, the risks she took, her schedule and so much more. I hope you enjoy the conversation with Rosemary as much as I did!

 

Books:

“Gideon’s Trumpet” by Anthony Lewis

So excited to share my conversation with my friend Vaughan Cutillo, one of three co-founders of Montauk Brewing Company! If you’re not familiar, Montauk is a beautiful and super fun summer vacation town.

Vaughan was born and raised in Montauk, but he has a Philly connection via his alma mater: Villanova University. As listeners know, I love featuring Philly success stories since I grew up there! One of the main reasons I am excited to share Vaughan’s story is because Montauk Brewing Company has truly humble and authentic roots. They started from the bottom, brewing beers as a hobby in Vaughan’s parent’s basement. At age 25, Vaughan and the two other co-founders (Eric Moss and Joe Sullivan) decided to give their 2-week notice to their existing jobs, pull their funds together, and turn their passion of brewing beers into a real business.

The first step was to open an actual brewing taste room, but it didn’t happen overnight. Since the guys were the very first brewing house in Montauk, it took nearly three years to get full permitting from the township.  Although they hit some road bumps in the beginning, Vaughan, Eric, and Joe persevered and stayed on course. June 30, 2018 marks the company’s six-year anniversary! Today, not only do they have an awesome, super popular brewery in the heart of Montauk, but they also distribute their beer throughout Long Island, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, Staten Island and West Chester. They have an incredible following and just over this past Memorial Day weekend, they sold 300,000 cans of Montauk Brewing Company beer.

Can’t wait to watch their company continue to grow—and of course, can’t wait to visit Montauk again this summer!

 

Books:

Good To Great by Jim Collins

Cabin Porn: Inspiration for Your Quiet Place Somewhere by Steven Leckart and Zach Klein

Website: https://montaukbrewingco.com/pages/home

Instagram: @montaukbrewco

Hi everyone! Given that I am from Philadelphia, I absolutely love when I have the opportunity to feature Philadelphia entrepreneurs. So today I am excited to share my conversation with my friends Neely and Chloe Burch who were both born and raised right outside Philadelphia.

Neely (27) and Chloe (26) are sisters and they come from a long line of family members in the fashion industry including their dad and uncle (who started Eagle’s Eye), their cousins Louisa and Pookie Burch (who started Trademark), and of course their aunt—the one and only Tory Burch. In the fall of 2016, Neely and Chloe decided to pave their own path in the fashion industry and launched “Neely and Chloe” in NYC which features a wide variety of affordable go-to accessories, such as handbags, wallets, footwear and so much more! I purchased my weekender bag a few weeks ago and I use it every single day!

Throughout our conversation, Neely and Chloe tell us all about their entrepreneurial journey as sisters. We talk about “a-ha!” moments (i.e., when their product was featured on Oprah’s Top 100 List), navigating the fundraising world, how they deal with setbacks, and so much more. Stand by: this sister duo is on to something so incredible. I can’t wait to watch them continue to grow and explode in the fashion industry!

Website: https://neelyandchloe.com/about/

Hi everyone! Today I am super excited to share my conversation with my friend, Amy Howard, who is from Memphis, Tennessee. Amy has an uplifting and humbling story!  She tells us all about how she took a risk and started her very own company in the early 1990s called Amy Howard Collection—a company where she and her husband, Gene, designed and manufactured beautiful, high-end furniture.

They started out small but worked tremendously hard and eventually gained a huge following. They found themselves selling high-end furniture to people all over the world, including celebrities! Amy was also kind enough to tell us about her setbacks, such as in 2008 when her target audience suddenly changed—people were no longer buying luxury furniture and manufacturers were copying her furniture line at a much cheaper rate, but Amy didn’t give up.

She got creative, pivoted and started the Amy Howard at Home paint line in 2011, which is a distinguished class of high-end artisan quality paint products and training. People can simply buy her paint line and rescue, restore and redecorate their furniture on their very own. Then in 2015, she partnered with ACE Hardware, where her paint line was sold in stores all over the world. Her “One Step Paint” was recently featured on the Today Show! She has also published two books and I LOVED them both!  I hope you enjoy my conversation with Amy as much as I did!

Amy Howard at Home:

Books:

“Rescue, Restore, Redecorate: Amy Howard’s Guide to Refinishing Furniture and Accessories” by Amy Howard

“A Maker’s Guide: A Letter and Roadmap to Creative Entrepreneurs” by Amy Howard

“Good to Great” by Jim Collins

Website:

http://www.amyhowardhome.com

 

Hi everyone! I have a really special guest today, Eustace Wolfington. Eustace is 85 years old and he and his late wife, Marcy, had 10 children, 33 grandchildren, and 1 great-grandchild. He is one of the most renowned innovators in the history of the car industry. Euse tells us his story of how he revolutionized the car industry with his company, “Half A Car.” His concept was to have the customer finance or lease half of the vehicle’s price, then after two years, the dealer would take the car back and resell the vehicle for the depreciated price. I know it’s a little complex so to put it in simpler terms, if you lease a car today, it is because of Euse Wolfington.

So it took nearly 20 years for the rest of the world to catch onto Euse’s idea, given that at that time, the majority of the world was more familiar with the concept of purchasing a car at full price. Although so many people told Euse to give up, he persevered and his “Half A Car” concept was adopted by Ford in 1982 and eventually by the car industry as a whole. From 1982 to 2000, Euse’s “Half A Car” concept expanded to over 18 countries, with more than four thousand dealerships in the system. In 2000, he sold the company for $200M.

Throughout our conversation, Euse not only tells us his entrepreneurial story but also feeds us with an extraordinary amount of wisdom that you will be able to apply to your everyday life. I hope you enjoy!

Hi everyone! Super excited to share my conversation with my friends Kimberly Caccavo (56) and Kate Nowlan (40). In 2013, these two amazing women co-founded GRACEDBYGRIT: an athletic apparel company based out of San Diego. Throughout our conversation, Kimberly and Kate tell us all about life before GRACEDBYGRIT and share their GRITTY stories, such as when Kimberly lost her first husband to cancer at age 30 and when Kate went through a divorce at age 29. But don’t worry, there are silver linings to these GRITTY moments!

We then dive into their incredible entrepreneurial journey of launching GRACEDBYGRIT. They tell us all about their unique brand,  how it’s different from competitors (i.e., lululemon), how they overcome the naysayers, how they juggle working full time with kids, what they have learned about investors, and so much more. I hope you guys enjoy our conversation as much as I did!

Books:

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

Website:

https://www.gracedbygrit.com/

Hi everyone! Super excited to share my conversation with my friend Holly Finigan. In 2012, Holly founded The Nantucket blACKbook, a modern-day guide to Nantucket based on trust and genuine marketing. As always, we get real in our conversation! We talk about Holly’s years before Nantucket blACKbook—when she traveled the world (St. John, Argentina, New Zealand and Hawaii) and her bartending days where she learned a ton of life lessons (i.e., the art of hustle, patience, people skills and mastering difficult situations).

Holly then tells us the story of when she launched Nantucket blACKbook. We discuss how it disrupted the media industry in Nantucket, how she persevered against the naysayers, her “ah-ha” moments, how she has built genuine trust and friendships with her clients and so much more. Holly was also kind enough to share personal stories, such as when she lost her mom just around 4 years ago and how she recently had open heart surgery just 10 weeks ago!

Through these adverse life experiences, she is able to be a true model for listeners that may be going through similar hardships. I hope you enjoy Holly’s stories as much as I did!

 

Books:

The Secret by Rhonda Bryne

The Magic by Rhonda Bryne

The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz

Website:

http://nantucketblackbook.com/

Instagram:

@nantucketblackbook

Hi guys! Super excited to share my conversation with my friend Suzie Welsh Devine. Suzie and I grew up in the same area, right outside Philadelphia, and we are right around the same age (I’m 30 and Suzie is 29). Suzie has an incredible start-up story that I am super excited to share with you. As we know, infertility is a hot topic right now—at least 1 in 8 couples struggle with infertility and around 7.4 million women. While Suzie was an IVF and fertility nurse at Penn Fertility Care, she became passionate about helping women struggling with infertility on a larger level.

Just over two years ago, Suzie entered the Wharton’s Entrepreneurship Program, where she founded her company called BINTO (short for “bun in the oven”). BINTO is a women’s health company developed to partner with you on the journey to parenthood. The program ended in 2016 in a Shark Tank-like experience. The idea for BINTO did well and she got her first angel investor from the pitch.  When she graduated from the program, Suzie quit her job and went full-steam ahead with BINTO.

BINTO curates all of the best scientifically-backed fertility and pregnancy products on the market. If you subscribe to BINTO, they will deliver a monthly box of safe and effective products and supplements that will best match your body’s needs. The products vary from woman to woman and from month to month, depending on the customer’s life stages and personal experiences. They range from pre-pregnancy products and menstrual support to prenatal and postnatal care to infertility support if necessary. It’s convenient and much more cost effective than going to the local CVS or pharmacy trying to figure out what vitamins or probiotics will best suit you.

I loved not only listening to Suzie’s entrepreneurial story but I’m also very grateful she was able to educate me on infertility, given that millions of couples and women all over the world struggle with this on a daily basis. Enjoy!

 

Website: https://mybinto.com/

Books: The Art of Awakening by Charlotte Davis and  Konchog Lhadrepa

Hi everyone! Very excited to share my conversation with my friend Christina Mallon. Christina and I are the same age (Christina: 29, me: 30) and we both grew up right outside of Philadelphia, so our social circles overlapped a lot in high school and college. I always remember Christina being very sweet and welcoming!

Christina started losing feeling in her hands and arms around 8 years ago, right after graduating college. She is now completely paralyzed in her hands and arms. She has seen over 400 doctors around the world, but no one can quite figure out what caused Christina to lose complete feeling in her hands and arms. But that has not stopped Christina from living her best life in NYC—she works full time, has become a spokesperson for people with disabilities, has an awesome boyfriend, and is super involved with Open Style Labs, a non-profit that designs clothing for people with disabilities. Open Style Labs has gained national recognition and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, NY Times, CNN, ABC News and many other platforms.

As always, we get real in this conversation—we talk all about the disability, how she has adapted her daily life with no use of hands and arms, what dating is like with a disability, the frustrations and setbacks she has experienced, how she continues to stay positive, and so much more. I hope you enjoy my conversation with Christina as much as I did!

Books

A Man Search by Meaning by Viktor Frankl

Website

Open Style Lab

So excited to share my conversation with Lauren Dudley Stephens and Kaki Dudley McGrath. They are two sisters from Greenwich, Connecticut who have a really cool startup story!

Lauren and Kaki found themselves living in fleeces, whether it be on cooler summer nights in Nantucket, on ski trips in Vermont, or on boat rides on the Long Island Sound—they always wore fleeces for that extra warmth. The two kept wondering why fleeces couldn’t be more fashionable! So in 2015, they reimagined fleeces and launched Dudley Stephens—fleeces for women that can be worn casually or dressed up! I bought one back in December and I legit live in it; I find myself throwing it on as I walk to flywheel classes, run errands and go out with my friends. They are so comfortable AND flattering!

During our conversation, the Dudley sisters not only tell us about their entrepreneurial journey since 2015 but also life leading up to it—a testament that everything happens for a reason! Lauren was kind enough to share a personal story of how she and her husband struggled with infertility for two years. The creation of Dudley Stephens was her silver lining during that difficult time. We also talk about the different jobs Lauren and Kaki had leading up to Dudley Stephens and how they now apply those skills to their business (side note: Lauren worked in PR at Calvin Klein and dressed celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow). We talk about juggling the mom life and working full time (Kaki and Lauren both have two small children), what it’s like working with family, and so much more! I hope you guys enjoy my conversation with Lauren and Kaki as much as I did!

 

Books:

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

Oh Crap! Potty Training by Jamie Glowacki

Website:

www.dudleystephens.com

Instagram:

@dudley_stephens

 

Photo by Lindsay Madden Photography |@lmaddenphoto (Instagram)