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

Hi Rochelle, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?

When I started Optimist Made, I knew I wanted to leave the world a better place than where I found it. I wanted to combine all of the things I love since I would be working on it 24/7, 365. I have had plenty of help in my life to get me to where I am today as a black woman part of a well-defined minority, and I wanted fewer people to feel that feeling of hopelessness until magically that helping hand comes along. I wanted to be proactive about helping the Underdog and discover them and scale them to much larger retailers that would allow them to realize the scale of their talent and create better lives for themselves. These makers have hustled long enough living hand to mouth, and it is about time that someone come along and recognizes their worth, and that person is me!

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Arriving where I am today was far from easy. I grew up as a black woman in predominantly white communities, never feeling like I fit in and always working extra hard to be seen and be heard. I have grown up as a global marketer for blue-chip companies, some of the most famous globally; however, I always felt like I never made the shortlist for opportunities or referrals, so I had to self-create. Because of this adversity, I knew I needed to be in control of my own destiny and become an entrepreneur. I just needed the idea. The foundation of who I am is that I always want to help the have-nots because I have always been one myself, so when I left corporate America to start my own consultancy, I knew I wanted to help my own… start-up entrepreneurs. During that time and facing more adversity, Optimist Made’s concept came to be, and I couldn’t be happier for where I have landed. I live to help others thrive and make our world better and stronger. I am a powerhouse, an activist, and a change agent. I have a lot of work to do, and I am here for it. Bring it on!

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love the element of surprise! I once kidnapped my brother and took him from LA to San Francisco to Napa to Las Vegas all in one week, only telling him trip by trip what to pack. So, asking me for a week plan in LA is a much easier feat! I would first take my best friend to the Hermosa Beach Pier for a trip to a local dive called Barnacles for a drink and then off to The Arthur J in Manhattan Beach for dinner, so they have a taste of where I live. We would head up to PV the following day for hiking with my dogs and a picnic on the cliffs overlooking the Pacific. We would then take a drive up the coast to Malibu for some wine tasting, lunch at Broad Street Oyster Company, and then head up to Malibu Wines for games, fun in the sun, and dinner at sunset. While up north, I would do a staycation at the Fairmount in Santa Monica, play by the pool, and then head to Soho House for dinner. We would take a reprieve in Redondo Beach, where I live, and then head east to Silver Lake to walk the reservoir and visit some of the local haunts for food and drink. For dinner on the way home, we would stop by Post & Beam to support one of my favorite black-owned businesses. To end the week, we would head to Gardena for some beautiful ramen to have my friend leaving the week with a comfortable belly!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I dedicate this shoutout to my mother, Eve Webb. She has always been there in all the ways that I needed. She has always extended a helping hand regardless of how inconvenient it was for her. She is my silent inspiration and my loudest cheerleader. She does not realize it, but it is her way of being that inspires me to do what I do and help others. I see the way she lifts me up and I want to do that for others. Whenever I accomplish something great, she is the first on the group text to raise me up or call me with accolades and I know she doesn’t realize how much that means to me and how it keeps me going. She was there with me on the streets of London where the idea of Optimist Made was born… of course telling me I could do it! And to turn my crazy idea into a real company. There is no one else that I would rather shoutout other than my beautiful mama!

Website: www.optimistmade.com

Instagram: optimistmade

Linkedin: optimistmade

Twitter: optimistmade

Facebook: optimistmade

Youtube: optimistmade

Image Credits
Skinny Empire Jenn Harrington

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