I was serendipitously invited to a benefit event, Simply Divine, where naturally, I was drawn to the Champagne display, as my double-x chromosome dictates. Initially, I was enchanted by the display and promise of inebriation, but in short-order was drawn in by the effervescent blonde who was pouring bubbly and chatting up party-goers. Tawnya Faulkner, proprietor and CEO of Le Grand Courtage, (a French sparkling wine), stood out at this event as a rare bird, a female wine merchant pouring her rosé and brut with the earnestness of a protective mother, imploring you to have more. Equally intriguing was the origin story of Le Grand Courtâge, with the twists and turns of a journey worthy of its namesake. As she recounted her story of having quit a career as a real estate developer to pursue her Champagne dreams, I immediately recognized the familiar blueprint of the transformative fantasy that many people have, but few make reality. I am pleased that she could share her story with our readers and I hope that her journey inspires many more of us to take that leap of faith and follow our dreams.
You may recognize Janessa Anderson from her ongoing contributions to our style section, sharing monthly Trend Report picks to keep you looking chic every day and in the workplace. In her daily life, she manages the women’s collection for Tommy Hilfiger, overseeing their press placements worldwide. Janessa’s job description intrigued me as an indicator of what many professional jobs look like these days: a mix of creativity, technology & business. Newsstands and webpages often bombard us with the glamorous sides of fashion and entertainment, but we rarely get a peek behind the curtain at the creative professionals who make the magic happen. Janessa was kind enough to lift the curtain so we could get a glimpse at the flip-side of side of fashion.
The other day in one of our meetings, Autumn was remarking about a friend who was a successful actress, having a baby and launching a new clothing line, asking out loud “How does she do it all?” That is a question we often ask ourselves here at Move LifeStyle. Since there is no single path to success, and everyone’s process is a little different, we’ve been fortunate to learn from each other’s attempts to juggle life, families, careers and everything in between. Being a woman has added challenges, and it has been these stories of women who triumph, despite the possible pratfalls, that have resonated with us as we navigate this career landscape ourselves. Girl Friday is the embodiment of that line of questioning, and one of our favorite columns here at Move LifeStyle. We are inspired by the lives of working women and the circuitous paths that their lives take. Here are a few of our favorites, in the hope that you will be as inspired as we have been.
Actress, writer, and schadenfreude connoisseur, Jenny Mollen Biggs lives in a world that many of us only wish to visit someday: the world of imaginary things. Both reviled by conservatives and heralded by the Huffington Post, Jenny’s social media presence is unmistakably that of a post-modern provocateur, consistently delivering ironic self-reflective tweets and Instagram photos to instigate and amuse. In this newfound role as a spinner of tall tales, Jenny has written a standing column for Playboy’s The Smoking Jacket, aptly titled ‘What She Said,’ and recently signed a book deal with St Martin’s Press for her collection of comedic essays entitled ‘I Like You Just The Way I Am.’
Jesse Draper has built the business empire, Valley Girl Inc., by talking about, well, business. A refreshing twist on typical number-crunching suit shows, her syndicated web talk program, The Valley Girl Show, can be accurately described as “The Ellen DeGeneres Show for business.” A typical day on the set of The Valley Girl Show may involve pink umbrellas, boas, or pom-poms, in addition to any number of silly parlor games for the unsuspecting Silicon Valley entrepreneur. Dovetailing on the success of her show, Jesse has started a networking organization for women in business, revealing her soft spot for helping women navigate the stereotypically masculine working world.
Brittany Ishibashi is an actress, seen most recently as Anne Ogami on USA’s Political Animals and soon to be seen on the CW’s Emily Owens, MD, but truly, she’s more accurately described as an artist. It was apparent at our first meeting more than a decade ago, that we were long lost twins. We bonded over a shared appreciation of corny jokes, dark chocolate and deep familial ties, and in return, she brought out the best in me: patience, generosity, and a joie de vivre. Upon meeting her, one is immediately struck by her bubbly charm and grace. However, what’s truly inspiring is her commitment to being an artist in all aspects of her life, and her dedication to keeping that spirit of play and childish wonder alive every day.
With a penchant for puns and a touch of the sarcastic, Ashley is a refined nest of contradictions – one who is equally comfortable cracking a can of PBR or wearing a stunning pair of Louboutins. She is my favorite type-A personality, meticulous and detail-oriented, while still managing to emanate an effortless beauty that belies the administrator crunching numbers in her head.