Onboardly’s Entrepreneur Crushes
It's that special time of year: Valentine's Day. A day when our hearts swell, palms get sweaty and we get emotional. (Okay... maybe that's just from all the chocolate we've been eating.)
In honor of the day of love, we wanted to share with you a few of our entrepreneur crushes. These people are all swoon-worthy in their own right and leave us feeling the greatest admiration for the work that they do.
Name: Cindy Gallop
Business: Founder and CEO, If We Ran the World, a platform that turns ideas into action.
Why I'm crushing: Because she is brilliant, powerful and is a devilish joker. But mostly because we can't deny that she is a pro when it comes to advertising, branding and marketing. She 'likes to blow shit up'. We'd love to live a day in her life!
Name: Brittany Morin
Business: Founder and CEO, Brit & Co, an online DIY community and e-commerce platform based out of San Francisco.
Why I'm crushing: Move over Martha Stewart! Brit is taking a growing DIY community by the horns and productizing the how-to's for glue guns and pom-pom's. She is young, hip, adorable, and certainly on the right track to creating an art-n-crafts empire. And making it fun and sexy at that.
Name: Kara Swisher
Business: Co-CEO and Founder, <re/code>, an independent tech news, reviews and analysis site. (And the former co-executive editor of AllThingsD.)
Why I'm crushing: Kara is, in a word: badass. Highly regarded as one of the web's top journalists (most feared and loved), Kara has had eyes and ears in every part of the technology sector since '97. She's always the first to hear, but sticks to her ethics religiously and doesn't get pulled into gossip. She's fierce, brave and brilliant. We'd love to hear some of Kara's stories from her many years in media.
Name: Rand Fishkin
Business: Founder of Moz
Why I'm crushing: Not only is Rand a very talented marketer, he's also one of the most transparent entrepreneurs I've ever come across. His commitment to Moz's TAGFEE code and sharing his story (sans the rose-coloured glasses) is totally inspiring.
Name: Stefanie Skinner
Business: Partner at Socially Acclaimed
Why I'm crushing: I'll be honest, Stefanie started out as just my favourite person on Kelly Cutrone's Kell On Earth. But now she's launching her own agency and I couldn't be happier to see that all of her hard work is paying off. +10 for Gen Y women!
Name: Mason Wartman
Business: Rosa’s Fresh Pizza
Why I'm crushing: This is the little pizza place that has fed 8,500 (and counting) homeless people by letting patrons pay it forward. When Wartman quit Wall Street and started his restaurant in 2013, he didn’t shy away from letting the homeless in to buy a $1 slice. Now customers can purchase an extra $1 slice and leave a post-it note for a homeless person to take for free pizza. Featured on Ellen, Wartman feeds 30 to 40 homeless people a day.
Name: Elon Musk
Business: Tesla Motors, Inc. + much more
Why I'm crushing: I won’t lie, I’m hoping for a free car. But truthfully my crush was solidified when Musk donated $1 Million to the Tesla Science centre, which will be built on the currently decaying site of Tesla’s original laboratory. Nikola Tesla, who The Oatmeal creator Matthew Inman rightfully calls “the greatest geek whoever lived”, has been, until recently, largely overlooked by the scientific community. Musk intrigued me by naming his electric car after Tesla but solidified my crush with his donation and promise to build a Tesla car supercharging station at the site.
Name: Lauren Conrad
Business: LaurenConrad.com and The Little Market
Why I'm crushing: For many, the first thing that comes to mind when they hear the name Lauren Conrad is The Hills and all things reality TV. While I have the Hills to thank for introducing me to the famous LC, it's her entrepreneurial spirit and determination to prove she's more than a reality TV star that has me crushing. She's a published author, she created her own affordable and beautiful clothing line for Kohl's, and still had time to launch The Little Market, whose mantra is to empower women artisans to rise above poverty and support their families around the world. On top of it all, she's a social media queen on Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. I'd love to be best friends with this savvy and creative beauty any day.
Name: Jeff Chen
Business: Co-founder and CEO at Joyride
Why I'm crushing: I'm a BIG fan of podcasts. BIG fan! I'm also a strong believer that creatives should be paid for bringing us joy. Joyride is setting out to ensure that podcast creators receive donations from those who enjoy their work. One of the podcasters on Joyride is starting to see profits of roughly $250 a month coming in from this 'crowdfunding' approach to supporting podcasters.
Beyond this, Joyride is a platform to help listeners find great quality podcasts (something that is often quite a challenge). It's truly win-win for everyone involved.
Name: Vivienne Harr
Business: Chief Inspiration Officer at STAND
Why I'm crushing: So you're 10 years old and you have cofounded a socially positive crowdfunding platform with Ev Stone. Yup. You make it onto my list! With the mission of raising funds for non profit organizations via mobile payments, STAND is driven by compassionate actions.
Born out of a lemonade stand that Vivienne set up with the goal of raising funds to end childhood slavery, her ambitions grew - and grew - until she made $101,000 from her efforts! Now Make a Stand lemonade is bringing in some serious cash and donates a portion of its sales back to the company's foundation. Vivienne's idea has gone digital and become a mobile crowdfunding platform. Yes. The kids are alright.
It's all on the table now: our list of Onboardly's entrepreneur crushes. (Click to Tweet this.) We'd love to know who's on your list? Anyone you're crushing on who is doing great work in the space? Leave us a comment below.
[Photo Credit: Daniel Greene]