Women Who Inspire Us on International Women's Day 2021
As a WBENC certified, award-winning, woman-owned company, International Women's Day is one of our favorite—and most important—days of the year. The list of women who inspire us is so long. Every one of us at Elevate My Brand have had our lives positively impacted by incredible women, and we want to share them with the world. Each of us chose two to three women who have made a significant impact in our personal and professional lives, so please read our stories and celebrate these fabulous femmes with us!
Pam, my senior year English teacher, was the first person who took me seriously enough as a writer to push me towards my goal. She had a way of speaking to me like an adult and helped me realize that it was possible to pursue writing as a career. She is not just an educator, she’s someone who can make you believe that anything is possible but also emphasizes the hard work it will take to get you where you want to go.
Britney is one of the masterminds behind the Brazilian Blowout empire. She was one of the first true leaders I encountered in my professional career. She taught me that no problem is too large and no obstacle too hard to overcome when you have a great team behind you. She didn’t just dictate tasks, she rolled up her sleeves and worked with her team to inspire greatness.
Aside from being an amazing mother and friend, I look up to my mom for so many reasons. Working as a family lawyer, my mom has made such a huge impact on so many people’s lives. She taught me the meaning of success which is, as Ralph Waldo Emerson says, “knowing that one life has breathed easier because you have lived.”
Lori Gottlieb is a well-known therapist in Los Angeles and I can honestly say that reading her book “Maybe You Should Talk to Someone” has changed my life. While her stories about her clients in therapy have impacted me, the thing that most inspires me about Lori is her personal journey to get to where she is today. Her journey has taught me that it’s never too late to start over and do what you love.
Ohr and I became friends when we were 14 years old. She has recently inspired me with all of the amazing things she has been doing during the pandemic. She started a YouTube channel, made incredible progress in her weight loss journey and even launched her own jewelry business @euphoriadesignsla! I am so proud of her.
Everyone has that one English teacher who transformed their life. Mrs. Hall was mine. Her radical love and respect for her students, and her dedication to being her authentically unconventional self, sent me on a journey of self-discovery for which I will always be grateful. I wouldn't be me without her. If you love me, then you also love Mrs. Hall because she's part of me.
I don't want to be an astronaut or a doctor when I grow up. I want to be a Traci Barr. We've worked together on multiple projects and non-profits, and there was never a moment when she didn't embody the power of vulnerability, responsibility and community. I can only aspire to be as open and passionate as she is.
I honestly have no idea how to describe Marlanda. They defy definition. They can see through to the very core of who you are and lead in innovative, never-before-seen ways that somehow feel more familiar than what's always been done, all while remaining the most humble human I've ever met. Marlanda is truly the tide that rises all ships.
I look up to U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez because she stands up for the disenfranchised and speaks her mind. She was a working class underdog when she won her election and that inspires me.
I look up to Michelle Obama because she used her platform as first lady to advocate for education and poverty awareness. Her speeches are powerful and stick with me.
I look up to Stacey Abrams because she founded Fair Fight Action to combat voter suppression. She helped increase voter turnout in Georgia and was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
My mother, Sherry Kaufman, has been a teacher for almost 50 years, molding young minds. She teaches kindergarten, and while it was totally not helpful when she thought she could help me with my advanced calculus homework, it's pretty amazing to see how many people in LA credit her with being their first and favorite teacher. We can't go anywhere without someone stopping her. She's basically a celebrity in LA, and from 5 to 50 her students love her. I'm so lucky to call her my mother
Jilliene Helman and I were fixed up on a blind business date. I accidentally flaked and she told her EA not to reschedule. I was persistent and, when she finally took the meeting, we instantly fell in love. She's the CEO of Realty Mogul, for which she's raised $35M to date. Aside from being a badass business boss, she is an incredibly smart, caring and civically-minded human, and even though she's my junior, I look up to her immensely and hope to be just like her when I grow up.
My godsister Amy Gershoni is the first person I ever walked to as a baby. She is part of my extended communal family and she's always been someone I've aspired to be more like. She runs a creative agency in SF, which means I am able to go to her with both business and personal questions, and she's been a constant guiding light in my life. We have monthly check-in calls to make sure we stay connected, complain and/or celebrate agency ownership life's wins and losses. I truly believe part of the reason I chose my direction in life was to emulate her infectious creative spirit that people are drawn to, and that makes for a great leader.