Women-led Company “Little Lives PPE” Makes Kid-Sized Face Shields

Child wearing a face shield

Sending children to school is challenging enough during a pandemic – parents don’t also need to worry about how their younger children will manage masks and hygiene to stay safe.

A startup called Little Lives PPE has created a face shield that can be worn by children as young as two and is designed to sit comfortably on a child’s face throughout the day, ideally on top of a mask. Little Lives has partnered with a manufacturer in Rochester, New York, which has been mass-producing adult face shields throughout the pandemic. Little Lives masks are currently selling for $7 on their website.

Little Lives PPE was co-founded by Samira L. Brown, MD, Gabrielle Page-Wilson, MD and Alexandra Stanton.

Interview with Jessica O. Matthews

logo for Uncharted Power

Jessica O. Matthews is the CEO and founder of Uncharted Power, a full-scale renewable energy company. The initial goal of the company was to create a smarter energy grid for sub-Saharan Africa (Matthews is a dual citizen of the U.S. and Nigeria) but the impact of natural disasters such as flooding and wildfires on the US energy grid encouraged Matthews to broaden her focus and create a more global solution. Read more about this incredible entrepreneur in a July 14, 2020 interview in Politico.

NPR’s “How I Built This” podcast series – Resilience edition

How I Built This podcast logo

In NPR’s How I Built This podcast series, host Guy Raz interviews entrepreneurs to explore their journeys and lessons learned.  In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the series took a slight detour and began to record segments entitled How I Built Resilience where entrepreneurs share past experiences that required grit and discuss how the current coronavirus situation is impacting business.

How I Built Resilience” episodes include:

  • April 2, 2020 – Jeni Britton Bauer, founder of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. Jeni’s company battled a Listeria outbreak in 2015 that almost broke her business, but she bounced back stronger than ever and is confident her company will survive this crisis, too.  
  • April 9, 2020 – Susan Griffin-Black, founder of EO Products. Susan’s company has made a full pivot by only producing hand sanitizer and hand soap to support public health needs during the pandemic.
  • April 16, 2020 – David Neeleman of JetBlue Airways and Tristan Walker of Walker & Co.
  • April 23, 2020 – Author Simon Sinek whose books about business include “Start with Why,” and “The Infinite Game”
  • April 30, 2020 – José Andrés, a restaurateur who is now running World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit he founded that brings food to people during humanitarian crises.
  • May 7, 2020 – Christina Tosi of MilkBar and Gary Erickson & Kit Crawford of Clif Bars
  • May 9, 2020 – Stewart Butterfield of Slack and Steve Holmes of Springfree Trampoline
  • May 14, 2020 – Samin Nosrat, author of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat and Alice Waters & Fanny Singer of Chez Panisse
  • May 16, 2020 – Tobias Lütke of Shopify and Jon Stein of Betterment
  • May 21, 2020 – Tony Xu of DoorDash and Marcia Kilgore of FitFlop
  • May 23, 2020 – Sarah LaFleur of M.M. LaFleur who is rethinking her brand and her marketing to stay relevant in a new work-from-home world
  • May 28, 2020 – Restaurateurs Kyle Connaughton and Daniel Humm
  • May 30, 2020 – Alli Webb of Drybar and Andy Puddicombe & Rich Pierson of Headspace
  • June 4, 2020 – Jenn Hyman of Rent The Runway
  • June 6, 2020 – Troy Carter of Atom Factory
  • June 11, 2020 – Actor and comedian Kevin Hart
  • June 13, 2020 – Y-Vonne Hutchinson, founder of ReadySet, a consulting firm that helps companies make authentic commitments to diversity and inclusion.
  • June 18, 2020 – Cathy Hughes, founder of Urban One, the largest African American-owned broadcast network with 54 radio stations around the United States.
  • June 20, 2020 – Sadie Lincoln, founder of Barre3 who had to transition from in-person to online fitness programming.
  • June 25, 2020 – Former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick who discussed how protests for racial justice have resonated with him personally, and how this moment can spark meaningful change for African Americans — in the world of business and beyond.
  • June 27, 2020 – Canva founder, Melanie Perkins and Spindrift founder, Bill Creelman
  • July 9, 2020 – Sharon Chuter, founder of UOMA Beauty, a cosmetics company that caters to a wide variety of skin tones.
  • July 11, 2020 – Morgan DeBaun who founded Blavity as a media platform for Black millennials to convene and connect online.
  • July 16, 2020 – Julia Hartz, founder of Eventbrite
  • July 18, 2020 – John Foley of Peleton

Let’s Work – Speaker Series

Woman with laptop at wooden table

The “Let’s Work” speaker series sponsored by The Laundress invites female entrepreneurs and thought leaders to share their thoughts during this unique time in our world. The speaker series is happening on different days over the next several weeks at noon (ET). The series is also exciting in that there are breakoff sessions (zoom rooms) for the attendees to network amongst themselves in addition to the keynote speaker. Click this link to register (for free!) for the session. Upcoming speakers include:

  • April 24, 12:00pm EST — Lisa Price: Founder of Carol’s Daughter @iamlisaprice
  • April 28, 12:00pm EST — Sophia Roe: Chef, Wellness Expert, Founder of Pillow Talk Sessions @sophia_roe
  • May 1, 12:00pm EST — Patty Rodriguez: Best-selling Author, Co-founder of Lil’ Libros and Patty Rodriguez Jewelry, Senior Producer for On Air with Ryan Seacrest @pattyrodriguez
  • May 5, 12:00pm EST — Renae Bluitt: Creator of She Did That (Netflix), Founder of In Her Shoes Blog @iamrenaebluitt
  • May 8, 12:00pm EST — Amani Al-Khatahtbeh: Founder of MuslimGirl.com, Congressional Candidate New Jersey 2020 @amani
  • May 12, 12:00pm EST — Jaclyn Johnson: Founder of Create & Cultivate @jaclynrjohnson + Lindsey Boyd: Co-founder of The Laundress @thelaundress
  • May 15, 12:00pm EST — Erin Patinkin: Co-founder of Ovenly & Seemore Meats and Veggies, Co-host of Start to Sale @erinpatinkin
  • May 18, 12:00pm EST — Cyndi Ramirez: Founder of Chillhouse & Chill Times @cyndiramirez + Gwen Whiting: Co-founder of The Laundress @thelaundress

Entreprenista Podcasts

microphone in sound booth

One advantage of sheltering in place has meant more time for walking outside (socially distanced, of course!). We recently became hooked on listening to Entreprenista podcasts as we get some fresh air. If you are looking for something entertaining and educational to inspire you on your entrepreneurial journey, check out some of their recent episodes!

  • Episode with Eboni K. Williams, co-host of “State of the Culture” on REVOLT TV
  • Episode with Rea Ann Silva of Beauty Blender
  • Episode with Connie McDonald and Pam Weekes, co-founders of Levain Bakery

Documentary “She Did That”

5 black female business leaders
She Did That – RENAE L. BLUITT

In early February, Netflix premiered “She Did That” a documentary by filmmaker Renae L. Bluitt that provides an inside look into how a four different Black women entrepreneurs are achieving success. The film highlights Luvvie Ajayi (author, speaker and digital strategist), Lisa Price (hair care expert and founder of Carol’s Daughter), Melissa Butler (founder of beauty brand The Lip Bar), and Tonya Rapley (financial expert behind My Fab Finance). To read more about the film, check out this article from Forbes.

Ten Successful Shark Tank Alumni Share Lessons Learned

three sharks underwater

While most entrepreneurs will never end up on the reality show Shark Tank, there are interesting lessons to be learned from those who have. From intellectual property protection to accepting feedback to envisioning your outcome to maintaining confidence to believing your gut, this piece on Medium shares important takeaways from ten women who pitched to the “sharks”.

Entrepreneurs Share Resolutions That Changed Their Careers

"2020" in gold

Happy 2020! As we head into a new year and new decade, we thought it would be useful to share this article from Fast Company that highlights four different women and how resolutions they made (ditching a business partner, creating a remote workforce, embracing the present and increasing prices) forever impacted their professional trajectories and businesses.

7 Black Women Entrepreneurs Share Advice at Essence Summit

seven black women sitting at conference room table

During Day 2 of the Essence + New Voices Voices Entrepreneur Summit and Target Holiday Market held in mid-December in Atlanta, ESSENCE UnBossed ESSENCE Podcast host Marquita Harris moderated a panel discussion with several successful women entrepreneurs. During the discussion, these women shared accomplishments and lessons learned. Click here to read the article.