SOMA Women Recognition

SOMA Women in Business — Align Wellness Studio

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Align Wellness Studio

Our motto
Where fitness is never one-size-fits-all. Having highly-trained instructors, we are able to work with clients of all kinds: athletes, the elderly, pre/postnatal, those with neurological conditions, and more. Primarily a Pilates studio, we do teach some complementary programs including barre, TRX, cardio, and massage therapy.

Our vision
To be a place of integrated health and wellness. That’s why we offer other like-minded businesses on site: Soul Sprout Family Acupuncture, Just Be Smooth Endermologie Studio, and Tara’s Highway 2 Well.

Our favorite moments in our business
When we see the awesome community that has grown in our studio and how they help each other. Our clients often act like a welcome wagon to newer clients.

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SOMA Women in Business — LaShonda Chaney, LaChaney’s Dance & Music Academy

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

LaShonda Chaney, LaChaney’s Dance & Music Academy

Why I started my business

I taught in the Orange and Maplewood/South Orange school districts for 10 years and loved connecting with kids. Fifteen years ago, I decided to step out on faith and open the school, teaching our students to focus on the future and dream big, eliminating the word “can’t” from their vocabulary. Once they set their minds to something, there are no limits.

My motto

“To whom much is given, much is required.” Our goal is to instill discipline and the love of dance and music in all students while also teaching skills that enable our students to be successful in life.

Why I do what I do

For the love of the arts and family. It’s more than just a dance and music school but, ultimately, a vehicle to impact lives in a positive direction. We believe our success comes as a result of providing solid training and quality service, along with an underlying belief in the strength of our organization.

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1747 Springfield Avenue, Maplewood
973-378-3877
lovedanceandmusic.com

SOMA Women in Business — Krista Hyer and Dayana Moreno, Mona Lisa Framing

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Krista Hyer and Dayana Moreno, Mona Lisa Framing

Why we do what we do
Maplewood Village has had a frame shop for more than 50 years and we think it’s important to maintain that tradition. When you think about it, framing art is really about the process of connecting with one another and developing trust. We get to be part of our customer’s world by learning about their special artwork, hearing how they came to have it and creating the best way to express its fullness, all while using the finest materials in the industry to preserve it.

Our favorite moments in our business
We love the connection that comes from hearing stories about a piece of art and facilitating the creative potential of the story through the simple materials of matte, glass and wood.

Most valuable lesson learned
Listening to people. We had to cultivate that so we can pull out the fullest potential of a piece and make sure the finished piece expresses it.

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7 Highland Place, Maplewood
973-762-2777
monalisaframing.com

SOMA Women in Business — Sharon Grazioso-Bianchi, J. Hilburn Custom Menswear

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Sharon Grazioso-Bianchi, J. Hilburn Custom Menswear

Why I started my business
I saw an untapped need in the market for top-of-the-line, yet moderately-priced custom menswear using the services of a personal stylist – me!

My favorite moments in my business
Seeing the “before and afters”. I absolutely love when that look of confidence strikes my client right after he tries on his suits, shirts, and trousers for the first time. I call it the “peacock effect”. I get a lot of oohs and aahs from their wives/significant others, too. What a difference properly-fitting clothing can make, both physically and mentally!

Most valuable lesson learned
Work hard, be honest, and exceed customers’ expectations and the sales will come! Because, if they don’t look good, I don’t look good!

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212-517-7009
sharongb.jhilburn.com

SOMA Women in Business — The GenWealth Group

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website. Today, we celebrate:

Why we do what we do

Our goal is to help women grow and protect the money they’ve worked so hard to accumulate. We offer a place where women are comfortable having a seat at the table. They’re heard, understood and can feel secure that they’ve got a trusted financial advisor working for them. We’re trusted by so many families; it’s a privilege to help them build a path to their financial future.

Our favorite moments in our business

We are gratified when our clients tell us they simply “don’t worry about this stuff anymore.” They have peace of mind knowing that we’ve got a plan for their financial future.

Our motto

Statistically, women outlive men by about six years. Since you’re likely to be left holding the bag, you might as well be sure there’s some money in it!

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6 Inwood Place, Maplewood
973-761-0400
thegenwealthgroup.com

SOMA Women in Business — Cat Fisher, Sadie’s

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Cat Fisher, Sadie’s

Why I started my business
After studying fashion and working for years in retail, I decided to follow my dream of owning my own boutique. I didn’t want to just open a store, I wanted to improve the area I live in and the world as a whole by offering women’s, men’s and home goods that are not just trendy but make a difference in the world.

My vision
I look forward to improving South Orange, New Jersey and beyond by teaming up with brands that have ethical and philanthropic goals, giving 1% of every sale to the local charity of the month, having local merchants and artists sell items here, and focusing on events that bring awareness to different causes.

Favorite part of working locally
I have been active in the neighborhood association and have heard many people express an interest in having more options for shopping locally so I am excited to become an even larger part of the community.

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65 Valley Street, South Orange
973-821-5441
ShopSadies.com

SOMA Women in Business — Ann Laskowski, Keller Williams Midtown Direct Realty

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:y, we celebrate:

SOMA Women in Business — Ann Laskowski, Keller Williams Midtown Direct Realty

Why I do what I do
People are fascinating to me and I love getting to know so many people in my business, from clients to fellow agents, inspectors, attorneys, contractors, and appraisers. It’s the clients that are at the forefront, though, because my relationship with them becomes very familiar and they become friends I enjoy seeing in town or staying in touch with if they have relocated.

My favorite moments in my business
I love when I get to make a call congratulating a buyer because their offer has been received or congratulating a seller because they’ve received a great offer. Coming to terms after a tricky negotiation is also a moment of satisfaction that I thrive on!

My tools of the trade
Relationships, relationships, relationships are my tools of the trade.

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181 Maplewood Avenue, Maplewood
917-586-3018
facebook.com/welcomehomeNJ

SOMA Women in Business — Tara Connell, CKO Maplewood

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Tara Connell, CKO Maplewood

Why I started my business

After my first child, I felt overweight, out of shape, and unhappy with my body. Thankfully, a friend introduced me to CKO in Brooklyn and I was hooked. Five years and two more kids later, my husband and I decided to move to the burbs and bring CKO Kickboxing to Maplewood and its surrounding areas. I knew there were plenty of people just like me who thought that feeling sluggish with a muffin top was ‘The New Black’, and I knew that CKO could make them feel better, just like it did for me.

My favorite moments in my business

Seeing people come in for their trial class looking meek and lacking confidence and, within weeks of coming to class regularly, they are glowing and looking like a million bucks!

My motto

Work hard and feel great!

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1933 Springfield Avenue, Maplewood
973-996-8779
ckomaplewood.com

SOMA Women in Business — Dr. Davia Strachan, South Orange Dental Center

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Dr. Davia Strachan, South Orange Dental Center

Why I do what I do
I love working with children and have wanted to be a dentist since I was 8 years old. Treating children allows me to do what I enjoy while helping someone grow and develop.

My favorite moments in my business
Being a pediatric dentist can be both challenging and rewarding. I see children at age 1 who are getting their first teeth. The child and their parents are often anxious but by the second or third visit that child is comfortable, happy and confident enough to sit in the dental chair on their own. Watching this progression is really rewarding to me and the families.

Favorite part of working locally
I’ve practiced in South Orange for over 20 years. My children grew up here and I feel like my patients and their parents are part of my family. It is amazing to watch patients mature from preschool to graduating from college. Some even have children now that I have the privilege of seeing for their first dental visit.

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481 South Orange Avenue, South Orange
973-762-2660
southorangedentalcenter.com

SOMA Women in Business — Kimaya Salaskar Thakrar, Kimaya Kama

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

SOMA Women in Business — Kimaya Salaskar Thakrar, Kimaya Kama

Why I started my business
I love wearing tunics and would always get compliments from people wanting to know where they could buy them. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any with the same quality and designs as those I would buy in India. So, I decided to open the store so these styles were more accessible to women, in a wide range of sizes. Kimaya Kama has evolved into a collection of my favorite styles in clothing and accessories.

Why I do what I do
Since I live in South Orange, I love meeting my friends and neighbors at the store. I am always happy to help them pick out outfits and accessories that would work for them, as well as gifts they need.

Favorite part of working locally
The South Orange/Maplewood community is like a large extended family and we love being part of it since our families live in London and India.

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168 Maplewood Avenue, Maplewood
973-762-2385
kimaya.com

SOMA Women in Business — Victoria Carter, Weichert Realtors

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Victoria Carter, Weichert Realtors

Why I started my business

After 20 years in corporate America, I saw an opportunity to raise the bar in the real estate profession. I wanted to offer an exceptional level of service and professionalism to clients that I viewed as not widely available. I made the decision to pursue a career as a real estate professional.

Best business advice

It’s essential to be a good listener and highly responsive to your clients’ needs. I have established myself as a trustworthy advocate that guides clients through the home-buying or selling process with their sole interest in mind. I seek to close the right deals – ones that are best for my clients.

My leadership style

Although I have a large team, I am very hands-on and involved in each transaction. Integrity is key to my reputation as is my two decades of experience, and if my name is associated with a transaction, I am involved.

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505 Millburn Avenue, Short Hills
973-220-3050
victoriacarter.com

SOMA Women in Business — Julie China, Idea Space Architecture & Design

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Julie China, Idea Space Architecture & Design

Why I do what I do
I am passionate about design, and it gives me joy to see our clients’ vision and our designs come to life after all of the planning and collaboration. I consider it a real privilege to create beautiful spaces that families can be proud of and be comfortable living and raising their families in.

Why I started my business
After 20 years of industry experience, I was ready to take the leap of running my own business and having full creative control. I love having the freedom and flexibility of being near my family doing great projects in this community.

Most valuable lesson learned
Keep an open mind and be a problem-solver. I’ve found that every challenge has a great solution.

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65 Hilton Avenue, Maplewood
347-452-1591
ideaspacead.com

SOMA Women in Business — Reesa Salomon, SOMA Speech Language Pathologist

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Reesa Salomon, SOMA Speech Language Pathologist

Why I do what I do
Communication is such a powerful tool and it’s the way that people connect with one another. I love being able to help my students – babies through teens – make lifelong connections in a variety of ways.

My favorite moments in my business
I find it rewarding to see children making connections, watching them being able to connect with their families, and the look on a mother’s face when she tells me that her child started saying “mama.”

How I network with other women
When I first moved to Maplewood as a young mother and business owner, I connected with moms through Mothers and More. As my business has grown, I’ve become a resource to local moms. I partner with parents and child-care providers to find the best ways to support their children while collaborating with women business owners in related fields on ways to best serve the population I work with.

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18 Berkshire Road, Maplewood
973-996-8089
somaslp.com

 

SOMA Women in Business — Alma Victor, Staynd Color

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Alma Victor, Staynd Color

Why I started my business
A young stylist fresh out of beauty school, I worked for Libby at the Chelsea Set for 16 years. I built up a good following, moved to another salon for five years, and then came back to transition the shop to my own brand, Staynd Color, as the new owner…in the same salon I grew up in.

My motto
I have learned so much being a business owner and my motto remains “Never Stop Learning”.

My leadership style
My staff and I collaborate so we can work together to take care of our clients’ hair care needs with honesty and integrity. As an artist/facilitator for L’Oreal Professionel, I believe continued support and education is vital to a better understanding of the colorful world of hairdressing. I love seeing light bulbs go off, watching my staff grow and becoming even more fabulous.

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2 Depot Plaza, Maplewood
973.313.3100
stayndcolor.com

SOMA Women in Business — Dancette Pratts, Inspirational Dance

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Dancette Pratts, Inspirational Dance

Why I started my business
Eleven years ago, after dancing professionally, I was looking to transition out of dance to another career when I had the chance to take the helm at the Bette White Dance Center where I had been a student. Ms. White had inspired me to be the best I could be and now I had the chance to influence other students, opening up as Inspirational Dance.

My motto
“Never give up.” This is the mindset that kept me going, enabling me to dance professionally for so many years and I see it at work with my students who keep pushing themselves to realize their dreams.

My favorite moments in my business
I love seeing what my dancers are capable of doing and then performing, whether it’s at a recital, a show or at our annual trip to Los Angeles.

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1634 Springfield Avenue, Maplewood
973-761-7236
inspirationaldance.com

 

SOMA Women in Business — Jamie Meier, Live Love Lens Photography

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Jamie Meier, Live Love Lens Photography

Why I started my business
Photography is my second career after having been in social work for a number of years. I started my business in 2011 after my daughter was born when I was on the hunt for an intellectual and creative outlet. Positive feedback from friends and family and a request for a photo shoot led me to take photography classes. Soon after, Live Love Lens Photography was born!

Most valuable lesson learned
I feel strongly about going the extra mile in regards to customer service. Sending another thank you note, correcting every mistake and then making up for it, all to make my clients happy. They remember that and come back.

Favorite part of working locally
I feel ingrained in the SOMA community and truly enjoy seeing my clients all over town. It’s a special connection and I’m very fortunate to have such kind and down-to-earth clients.

SOMA Women in Business — René Clawson, Clawson Architects

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

René Clawson, Clawson Architects

Why I do what I do
I believe that everyday life can be enriched through extraordinary design. As a residential architect and designer, I design smart solutions to ease my clients’ everyday lives. My work is informed by my real-life experiences: juggling a business; parental responsibilities; entertaining; and volunteering.

Favorite part of working locally
The people. Our residents cherish creativity, authenticity and individuality. This allows our firm to be creative as we develop solutions that address our clients’ needs and celebrate who they are, making each project unique.

My motto
“Have fun, too!” My younger self used to think, “When I get through this, then…” Over time, I learned it’s the journey. So, whatever I am doing I remember to build in the fun along the way.

SOMA People That You Meet: Audrey Rowe

People That You Meet is a series of interviews conducted and posted by the Pollock Properties Group/Keller Williams, highlighting residents of the South Orange-Maplewood community and their diverse and interesting lives.

This edition spotlights Audrey Rowe, Program Director for the South Orange-Maplewood Community Coalition on Race and Mary Kay consultant.

Favorite charity: SOMA Community Coalition on Race

What town do you live in? Maplewood, NJ

Where did you live before that? Houston, Texas

What brought you to SOMA? Corporate relocation with AT&T

What do you do (for a living or as a serious hobby)?  Program Director with South Orange/Maplewood Community Coalition on Race AND entrepreneur offering skin care cosmetics and consultation with Mary Kay

What’s your favorite feature of your home?  Spacious first floor with lots of windows and a “killer” kitchen

Where do you love to go on a date night?  Any place with good food, good music & the option to dance

What’s music/album are you really into these days?  My daughter SZA’s album, CTRL

If you could have a super-power, what would it be?  Making “broken” people whole

What’s the best book you’ve read in the last 5 years?  Instinct:  The Power to Unleash Your Inborn  Drive by T.D. Jakes

What’s something that amazes you?  How God-like yet depraved we can be

Describe your family: Involved, supportive, over-booked, outgoing, spiritually aware, talkers, loyal

Describe your ideal day:  Basking in sunshine and warmth, near water having an uninterrupted,   heart-felt conversation with a loved one or close friend

Favorite local place to eat?  The Parkwood Diner

Who/What did you aspire to be when you were little?  A nun or brain surgeon

What is your favorite store?  Costco

Mountains or Beach?  Definitely beach

Favorite movie?  I love old, classic musicals, “Singing in the Rain”

What inspires you?  My faith in God

How would you describe your “style”?  Edgy sophistication

Coffee or tea?  Tea – preferably herbal

What charity are you passionate about/how do you live out “CareServeGive? South Orange/Maplewood Community Coalition on Race is my charity choice because there is so much that needs to be achieved in the area of race, equity and inclusion, yet so little appetite and funding to actually make it happen.

SOMA Women in Business — Erin Williams, Erin’s Faces

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Erin Williams, Erin’s Faces

Why I do what I do
My entire motive in having my organic skincare/mineral makeup line is to empower and educate women, and the occasional gent!

My favorite moments in my business
When I see the light bulb go off for someone during a workshop or a lesson. As women, we’re expected to roll out of the womb knowing what a serum does and how to wing our eyeliner but that’s just not realistic, so when you see someone grasp a concept they’ve struggled with, it’s awesome. Also, when a product has really changed someone’s skin or given them relief from something they’ve dealt with for a long time, that really drives me as well.

Most valuable lesson learned
I’m a huge fan of community and support – I feel like there’s room for everyone – so it’s really important to me to lend a hand when someone needs it and be grateful when someone extends theirs to me.

SOMA Women in Business — Cristina R. de La Mar, Seven Point Wellness

Cristina R. de La Mar, Seven Point Wellness
My tools of the trade
What brings to life acupuncture, herbal medicine, nutrition, lifestyle consultation, and bodywork therapies are the ability to listen well, care deeply, and to approach each patient with both genuine curiosity and compassion. My goal is to translate the tools of my trade into comprehensive treatment strategies tailored to the unique needs of each person.

Most valuable lesson learned
Never underestimate how much you will learn from those who come to you for support. Those we “help” are powerful teachers.

My favorite moments in my business
All of my favorite moments center around bearing witness to people along their journey to wellness – not just in their bodies, but in their emotional and, sometimes, spiritual health, as well.

SOMA Women in Business — Neena Kumar, Enlightened Psychology

Last fall, Matters Magazine cel­ebrated women in the South Orange-Maplewood business community with a feature spread on “Women in Business.” These women represent a range of  professions – from architecture and beauty to speech pathology and financial services. In all, 26 women-owned businesses are profiled. See the original Matters Magazine feature here.

Village Green has partnered with Matters Magazine to give these local women entrepreneurs a digital platform and is posting each profile individually on our website during the month of March — Women’s History Month. Today, we celebrate:

Why I started my business
In graduate school I had a vision of being a clinical psychologist in private practice in New York City and for many years I practiced there. When I moved back to my former hometowns of Maplewood/South Orange, I opened a second branch here and practice as a generalist for children, adults, and families. When a child has a learning issue I can give them a psychoeducational evaluation and settle them in school.

Most valuable lesson learned
Everyone has their own anxiety, tolerance for stress, and internal battles. If we judge someone based on our tolerance or what we believe to be normal we are missing the chance for true empathy.

My tools of the trade
My mind is my most important tool along with attention and focus, memory, and the ability to be both present and analyze the material concurrently.

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