We had the good fortune of connecting with Judy Pena and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Judy, what do you want your legacy to be?
“I want people to remember that this all started to give my kids a chance to be their own boss. This was a chance to be able to work and give opportunities to those with similar neurodiversities without discrimination. I don’t want to look back with regret because I played it safe and was afraid to fail. And even worse, afraid to let my children fail. We must take chances and not regret the risks.”

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
“Fan Alley started as a side gig for my son Matt, who has a love of all things fandom. He was bullied in seasonal employment due to his autism, and was going to give up on trying to be “normal”. Then he thought it would be a great idea to be his own boss and open up Fan Alley selling things he loves. With the help of his little brother Brandon and myself, it’s become a family affair.

The lessons learned this past year is: Where there is a will, there is a way. We had to find a way to get our business out there during this pandemic and doing pop up events and selling online has been a game changer. You gotta find a way to still connect with customers- safely of course- and continue building your business. “

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
A must go to is Porto’s for their delicious potato balls. Then a visit to Hollywood Forever Cemetery to see all the beautiful headstones of celebrities. Gotta definitely make a trip to Olvera Street and eat delicious taquitos at Cielito Lindo.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout goes out to my fiancé and NAWBO (National Association of Women Business Owners) chapter. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without their support and encouragement. Trying to grow and maintain a business during a pandemic is no easy task. Wearing many hats can be stressful and they are always there with advice and a listening ear.

Website: https://www.thefanalley.com/

Instagram: Thefanalley

Facebook: Fanalley

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.