“If you stand for nothing, you fall for everything”

We asked the community to tell us about the values and principles that guide their lives and businesses.

Mitch Darnell | InspirationWedding(c) Officiant & Non-Profit Director

The Purpose-Driven Life is the principle that guides and informs me the most. By seeking to live a Purpose-Driven Life, I’m striving to make choices and actions that serve a more honorable, valuable and valid purpose than simply to satisfy my “needs”, “concerns” or other basic instincts. This means to do work that’s lonely, as few people wish to consider Purpose, because it rarely sees “profit”, “vendetta”, “revenge”, or opportunities to make others “less” as an honorable/worthy Purpose. Meanwhile, having this as my primary guiding principle means I feel like I’m leaving a legacy that may resonate with others and inspire them to live likewise. Read more>

Bekah Wriedt | Fashion Lifestyle & Editorial Photographer

I believe in the inherent value and dignity of all people which shapes the way I do everything. My desire is for every person to feel known and loved for who they are, not for what they do. Creating a positive and encouraging environment is a breath of fresh air in the midst of a crazy world. When people walk on set, my heart is for them to feel cared for, empowered, and valued. Read more>>

Jennifer Field Piette | Founder & CEO

As a Certified B Corp for several years now, it has been fundamental that we consider all of our stakeholders, not just shareholders, for every decision we make. Each decision carefully considers our customers, our suppliers, our community, our environment, and our shareholders, and how we can make a positive and equitable impact on all these stakeholders. In our particular case, we see the fundamental connection between the health of our soil, the health of our community, and our personal health. And the foods we deliver must always be sourced with soil health, community health and personal health top of mind. We choose certified organic, bio-dynamic, or regenerative organic produce as much as we possibly can. We choose pasture-raised meats from animals who are grazing and improving soil health wherever possible. We choose women and minority owned suppliers as much as we possibly can. Read more>>

Leigh Purtill | Adult Ballet Instructor & Choreographer

One of the most important things we as humans can do is to give to others in some way. For many people, that might mean a financial gift; for others, it’s lending emotional or psychological support in times of need. For me, it’s nurturing others’ natural talents and encouraging them to express themselves creatively. Dance, particularly ballet, has always been an exclusive art form, one that has prevented so many potential students from following their dreams or even bringing dance into their lives. I help dancers step into a light they might never have considered – or even thought was attainable for them. I think my guiding value is fairness and equality for all. Whether it’s equal access to the arts or a level playing field for all to participate, I want my business to reflect the larger world and that world is made up of a diverse and multi-faceted group of people. Read more>>

Joe O’Neill | Artist (Painter)

It is hard to distill it down to one word. What matters to me most is how I navigate the world. I want to do so with love and compassion. I want to be as much of a positive interaction as possible with the people I meet, whether for business or pleasure. This may be as simple as letting someone in while in traffic. In my personal life this means being a good friend and helping people when and where I can. In my professional life this means being easy to work with while still pushing for the best creative outcomes. I want to make work I can stand behind. Quality first, to the best of my ability. Like all humans I am fallible and far from perfect, especially in my personal life, but I strive to be and do the best I can. Read more>>

Tonya Kay | Actress, Dancer & Filmmaker

Authenticity. Contrived, faked and inauthentic performances, people and brands bore me. And you can feel that crap from a mile away. Authenticity just feels good. It confirms our humanness. When my audience sees my work, I hope they feel validated in being themselves as themselves. Read more>>

Osei Key | Artist

Persistence matter most to me. I’ve always found that if I really wanted something or go somewhere. The only way it was going to happen is if I worked hard and was persistent. I breathed , ate, and dreamt about it until it was real. When I learned to shoot film it was an everyday practice. I shot, I took notes, read books, listen to other photographers, YouTube, Google and whatever else it took until I got the photos I wanted. Then I had to learn to develop the film and again it took persistence. Day in and day out shootI got and processing until I got it right. Tons of photos lost to the process of learning but right now I’m in a good place. Still I have much to learn, the learning will never stop. Learning is really my favorite part! Read more>>

Donna Blanchard | Dance Teacher & Studio Owner

I believe that to have real success at anything, you have to have balance. A dancer needs not only quality technical training but emotional, mental and spiritual support. We are not one dimensional and a well rounded dancer/human needs to have stimulation and discipline in all areas to be successful as an artist. I have tried to create a healthy environment where a child or an adult can find their balance in life. Family, education, exercise and rest are necessary for a young person to be their best self. Whether their wish is to be professional or recreational, it can be accomplished if all their needs are met. Read more>>

Yoni Shrira | Cinematographer & Photographer

I think for me it’s staying true to myself and the morals I have. Things like honesty, working with people who have the best interests of others, never doing projects that go against what I believe in, not losing myself and getting corrupted by the chase of money or success. Honestly, I feel like sometimes I do this to an extreme but that’s something I’m trying to be conscious of as I communicate and make decisions. Read more>>

Clinton Jones | Catering Chef & Food Truck Owner

Working in the hospitality industry kind of makes this an easy question. I don’t work to become rich or well known. I do my job with the single goal of making the lives of anyone I encounter better. Throughout my career, and my life to be honest, I have tried my absolute best to make sure that every action leads in some way towards helping those around me. I truly believe that I am a terrible business man for this reason. I am bad at setting prices because I always want to give stuff away for free. It’s hard to plan schedules because I keep working extra hours to make things easier for the clients and customers. It’s difficult to grow the business because I lower my prices to reduce the stress of others. Some say this behavior is self destructive and unsustainable, but man… the feeling you get when you create a moment of true enjoyment in another person makes all the hard work worth it. Read more>>