We asked some of the city’s rising stars to reflect on what made a difference in their journey. We asked them to tell us about what they think the most important factor has been behind their success.

Amanda DeWoody | Founder of Poised Avenue Design Studio

The passion I have for female entrepreneurship. Women-owned businesses are in a category of their own and it is truly my greatest pleasure to work alongside other women in business. It is the support of and collaboration with my clients that propels me forward and has helped me build a successful brand design studio. The ability to create brands women everywhere can (and want to) enjoy — while also supporting the women behind them — is definitely what inspires and fosters my success. Read more>>

Shivam Sengupta | Artist, Music Producer and Composer

As a singer-songwriter, music producer and background score composer. The most essential factor that has changed the way I perceive not just my work but life itself was an expression I’d heard, “Play to express, not to impress.” It not only takes away the pressure of thinking about how others will perceive what you are doing, but also make you ask yourself the important question of what is the key element of what you are trying to get out of it. Read more>>

Tess Palma-Martinez | Intuition and Authenticity Mentor

Authenticity! Aligning with my authentic self has been the most important factor behind the success of my brand. When I began to let go of the societal expectations and personality masks, I was able to connect with my true essence. This is when my path became more clear – to transition out of working as a private chef for celebrities and step into my role as an Intuition + Authenticity Mentor. When we resist reality through the lens of our past, we are blocking the flow of life and we become disconnected from our true authentic selves. Read more>>

Meesha Gerhart | CEO

The most important factor in my success is the people in my community. It first started with my internal team, who still to this day are the people more responsible for the success Redtree has seen today. Also I can remember when I was about 2 years into the business I wanted to quit and someone from a local organization asked me “How can we help?” and I told them specifically what I was looking for. Read more>>

Saffie Camara | Candlemaker & DJ

The reason why Saff Candles is doing so well is because of the support of community. In 2020, we were all on lockdown and during that time I found comfort in being able to enjoy music all over the world via Twitch. While watching DJs and Producers stream, I made friends in the chat who have not only supported my business but have become lifelong friends and been a bright spot during this hard time. With the strength and help of the community my buisness has grown beyond what I ever could have ever imagined. Read more>>

Usman Shaikh | Entertainment Lawyer

I can say unequivocally that the single most important factor to U.S. Law Group’s success is our unparalleled dedication to client service. As attorneys, we provide a highly specialized service and, as a service-based profession, our focus should be on client satisfaction. However, many attorneys don’t seem to see it this way; often times attorneys simply don’t show an appreciate for their clients. It’s no secret that the profession has a bad reputation for not returning calls from clients or colleagues, slow response times to emails, not being transparent with clients, and, of course, unscrupulous billing practices. Read more>>

Jason Bergman | Real Estate Agent at COMPASS

The most important factor for my success is simply being EXTRA. It’s my ultimate flex. Extra on the goals, extra on the intentions, extra on the details, and extra on the actions. Not just for me, but for my real estate clients who rely on the extra version of me as well. Read more>>

Benson Chau | Photographer

The most important factor behind my success is mainly my girlfriend Jenny. She inspires me everyday to keep striving for success and to look forward to the future and what I may achieve. She keeps me motivated every day and I love her for that. Some days when I feel down and unmotivated to even do anything, she’ll surprise me with the littlest things; like boba or taking me out to see some fantastic cars. We both love cars and it just makes us smile every time we see a great looking car. Read more>>

Kimmie Denise | Founder & Designer

The most important factor behind the success of Sucré Couture has been its storytelling. Finding my authentic voice, which also represents the spirit of the women who raised me and came before me, women in the present, and women in the future, has been pivotal in the brand’s storytelling. While the stories we tell by way of editorial visuals and the jewelry we release are ever-evolving, they speak to the authenticity and true essence of the Sucré Girl. Read more>>

Dr. Daryl Gioffre | celebrity nutritionist, author of Get Off Your Sugar and Get Off Your Acid, founder of Alkamind

First and foremost, success is all about helping people break through by getting to the root cause of the health issues and concerns they are dealing with. So many doctors and products are only going after the symptoms, leaving that fire of inflammation and acidity raging inside of you. We have built up an organic following of customers who have gotten incredible results in transforming their health and energy because our Acid-Kicking supplements and detox programs are addressing these underlying imbalances in the body. Read more>>

Kate (Maeve) Broadhurst | Makeup Artist

Looking back over my life & my career…I would say that there are two equally important factors in the success that I have had: Tenacity & Authenticity. I am 38 and feel like I have lived 100 lives already. I had no formal training when I started, but I had 2 amazing mentors. They took me under their wing and shaped the artist that I am today. Read more>>

Jack Dyer | Founder/CEO, Topa Topa Brewing. Co.

The people. We are incredibly fortunate here at Topa Topa to work alongside some of the kindest, hardest working, and intelligent folks out there. At every level of our company we have talented people who care deeply about their work. That is what keeps us going! Read more>>

Sequoia Roberts-Williams | Owner of Kute Sis Accessories & Educator

The most important factor behind the success of my business is being able to inspire self-love, self-care, and be able to vibe with not only the customers, but the community around me. I have a unique gift for picking eye-popping accessories that brings out that radiant glow, that my costumers already have. I’m almost definite that while your out doing your daily tasks, someone will give you a compliment, and say that’s “Kute sis”. Read more>>

Dayo Gold | Rap Artist & Producer

The most important factor I believe to be the success of my brand is authenticity. I pride myself on being original and an individual. Dayo Gold is someone who has always took the road less traveled because it was something that no one else was doing. I trusted my gut enough to make the music I wanted to listen to and I’m thankful there are others who feel the same. I had enough confidence to shop at thrift stores when it was a necessity and those experiences have laid the foundation to my style/fashion. Read more>>

Jordan Kaye | Owner, Analog Events

Trust is the most important factor to the success of Analog Events. From our clients to vendors to employees, we all must have a mutual level of trust in each other. Our clients trust us to bring their vision to life and we must trust our vendors & team to execute that. We make communication the key value in our trust process. Read more>>

Hannah Uche | Photographer and Filmmaker

The most important factor behind the success of Image of God Media is seeking God first and making Him the true CEO of everything that is done, inside and outside of the brand. I am never led astray or disappointed when I do this. Image of God Media is flourishing and will continue to flourish because God’s wise leadership and counsel enables me to make informed, quality, decisions while being faithful to execute concepts for the brand that will preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. There’s a scripture that says “but seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). This is true spiritually and practically. Read more>>