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Pay attention – because the world is changing rapidly for the women of today. Gender roles are being shattered, as women around the world prove that they can run their own successful businesses; they can establish themselves as CEOs; they can take on the role of “breadwinner” for their families.
And let’s not forget when UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson rocked the entire world with the launch of the HeForShe campaign, calling on one billion men and boys to stand up and help end the inequalities that women and girls face every day.
It’s been a phenomenal year for women’s empowerment – and we want to celebrate that, especially in light of International Women’s Day (coming up on March 8)!
This year’s theme is #MakeItHappen and aims to encourage effective action for advancing and recognizing women. So, with this in mind, we’d like to recognize a group of strong, intelligent, business-savvy women who inspire us every day.
PJ Jonas, owner of Goat Milk Stuff
PJ is a woman who does it all – from raising eight beautiful children to running a popular goat milk soap business that’s been featured on the TODAY Show. And did we mention that Goat Milk Stuff is a family-run business? That’s right. Every member of the Jonas family (including little 7-year-old Jade) plays a role, from the initial milking of the goats to the final bagging of the soap – and PJ is the one who oversees all of it. She’s a superhero mom and businesswoman in our eyes!
“Children are more capable than most people realize. In our business, we give each child age-appropriate jobs, according to their individual strengths. Teaching them to work hard and serve others has not only helped Goat Milk Stuff to grow; it has also given our children skills that will enable them to succeed in life.” – PJ Jonas
Suzie McKig, co-owner of Twig & Fig
Suzie (“Twig”) launched her own graphic design firm in LA when she met her husband (“Fig”), who was running a product design company in Montreal. After the two discovered that they made a great team (both on a romantic and business level!), the two put their heads together to create a business that specializes in luxury event stationary. Suzie is an entrepreneur through-and-through, whether on her own or with her husband by her side.
“Always, always, always push yourself to be the best you can be, even when you don’t feel like it. Remember: in the end you have to look in the mirror and respect who you see. Oh, and kick some butt — but with loving kindness.” – Suzie McKig
Gillian Robinson, co-owner of ZombieRunner
Gillian runs marathons (enough said). She has completed more than 100 races, ranging from marathon distance to 135 miles! But Gillian is not just an impressive distance runner; she and her significant other/business partner, Don, also run a cool Zombie-themed running store that doubles as one of Palo Alto’s most popular coffee joints. Her passion for running (and a really good cup of Joe) is what inspires her to run her business – and we love a woman who follows her heart.
“Owning a business can be very rewarding, but it also takes a lot of perseverance. Some days really do feel like I’m running a marathon (or even an ultramarathon)! But having the chance to see customers smile and feeling like I’ve made a difference in their lives makes everything worthwhile.” – Gillian Robinson
Do you know any women who deserve a shout-out on International Women’s Day? We’d love to hear more about their stories in the comments below. Let’s spread the love and #MakeItHappen!