Founder Profile

Shiza Shahid

Our Place

For designing cookware that actually matches the way we live

Company Information
Industry
Manufacturing
Year Founded
2018
Location
Los Angeles, California
Industry
Consumer Products & Services
Inc. Honors
Inc. Female Founders
2020

Anna Sheffield

Anna Sheffield

For using a one-of-a-kind approach to make one-of-a-kind art

Company Information
Industry
Consumer Products
Year Founded
2009
Location
New York, New York
Industry
Retail
Inc. Honors
Inc. Female Founders
2020

Elizabeth Stein

Purely Elizabeth

For seeing the huge potential in a category -- granola -- that seemed to be played out

Company Information
Industry
Food & Beverage
Year Founded
2009
Location
Boulder, Colorado
Industry
Food & Beverages
Inc. Honors
Inc. Female Founders
2020

Sonia Strobel

Skipper Otto

For recognizing that, as community-supported agriculture can bring financial stability to farmers, community-supported fisheries can help fishing families

When Sonia Strobel, a schoolteacher in Brooklyn, married into a fishing family, she saw first-hand how precarious their livelihoods could be. “Fishermen are paid pretty poorly for an incredible amount of risk and hard work,” she says. Some years her father-in-law would make money; others, he wouldn’t. Strobel’s husband grew up fishing with his father, and wanted to continue, but got out of it because it was too hard to make a living.

Part of the problem is the fishermen themselves get very little of the money consumers pay for fish, thanks in part to long supply chains and a complex system of licenses in quotas. Additionally the prices they are paid fluctuate wildly from week to week. This year has been particularly bad, Strobel says, because Covid has forced so many restaurants – typically big buyers of seafood – to close.

Strobel knew that community-supported agriculture, or CSAs, had made a dent in similar problems that beset farmers. Meanwhile, she knew that Canada—where she now lived--exported 90 percent of its fishing catch, but 80 percent of the seafood sold in groceries and restaurants is imported. Why not start a CSA for fishing families? In 2008 she did just that, starting Skipper Otto – named for her father-in-law – while on maternity leave. That first year 40 members joined, and the next year she had 400 members.

In 2014 Skipper Otto became Strobel’s full-time job, and has since grown to 5,000 members and ten full-time employees. Her growth comes not from venture capital – she’s had some debt financing and a line of credit, but otherwise has bootstrapped the whole thing – but from collaboration. “You don’t have to do everything yourself, and you shouldn’t,” she says. “Instead, get a real diversity of skills among a small team of people.” —Kimberly Weisul

Company Information
Industry
Food & Beverage
Year Founded
2008
Industry
Food & Beverages
Inc. Honors
Inc. Female Founders
2020

When Sonia Strobel, a schoolteacher in Brooklyn, married into a fishing family, she saw first-hand how precarious their livelihoods could be. “Fishermen are paid pretty poorly for an incredible amount of risk and hard work,” she says. Some years her father-in-law would make money; others, he wouldn’t. Strobel’s husband grew up fishing with his father, and wanted to continue, but got out of it because it was too hard to make a living.

Part of the problem is the fishermen themselves get very little of the money consumers pay for fish, thanks in part to long supply chains and a complex system of licenses in quotas. Additionally the prices they are paid fluctuate wildly from week to week. This year has been particularly bad, Strobel says, because Covid has forced so many restaurants – typically big buyers of seafood – to close.

Strobel knew that community-supported agriculture, or CSAs, had made a dent in similar problems that beset farmers. Meanwhile, she knew that Canada—where she now lived--exported 90 percent of its fishing catch, but 80 percent of the seafood sold in groceries and restaurants is imported. Why not start a CSA for fishing families? In 2008 she did just that, starting Skipper Otto – named for her father-in-law – while on maternity leave. That first year 40 members joined, and the next year she had 400 members.

In 2014 Skipper Otto became Strobel’s full-time job, and has since grown to 5,000 members and ten full-time employees. Her growth comes not from venture capital – she’s had some debt financing and a line of credit, but otherwise has bootstrapped the whole thing – but from collaboration. “You don’t have to do everything yourself, and you shouldn’t,” she says. “Instead, get a real diversity of skills among a small team of peopl

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Shelly Sun

BrightStar Care

Because caregiving is big business, but not always treated as such

Company Information
Industry
Health Services
Year Founded
2002
Location
Gurnee, Illinois
Industry
Health
Inc. Honors
Inc. Female Founders
2020