Vancouver is a cut-throat city. It may be small and the collaborations may be tight, but the competition is also strong.
Regardless of the competition, and the tradition that men rule the industries, these women have broken down barriers and transcended the odds of making it in their fields. Whether it be in business, fashion, digital media, or a focus in giving back to the community, these women have exemplified outstanding qualities as individuals and entrepreneurs.
Without a doubt, there are so many amazing professional women in the city and this list hardly represents a fraction of them. But we'd like to showcase a few of these women and the fruits of their blood, sweat and tears.
Here are 6 bad ass girl bosses in Vancouver who are absolutely inspiring...and this is probably only volume 1 out of 1,000. Doing my research for this article has truly inspired me as a young, professional woman, and I hope it inspires you as well!
1. Donni Rae // @donnirae
Fashionista, serious entrepreneur and mommy of two boys, Donnie Rae has been making a killing in Vancouver fashion since her launch of Privilege Clothing Boutique in 2007. She began with "very little" knowledge of the fashion, retail and customer service industry, but simply trusted her gut when plunging herself deep into her business. Having felt the calling to bring fashion to the suburbs, Privilege was born. Nine years later, her boutique now has three locations across Greater Vancouver that carries carefully and personally curated luxury pieces. On top of that, she has co-founded a premium lounge wear line, State of Grace, as well as a gorgeous watch line, Piperwest. And it doesn't seem like she's stopping any time soon.
2. Genicca Whitney // @_badassladyboss
Genicca Whitney, founder of Badass Lady Boss Collective, is a self proclaimed "dream cheerleader" and "badass lady boss". Her online platform, through her interviews, blogs and podcasts, supports and empowers business dreamers everywhere, connecting successful and established female entrepreneurs with those who are just starting up. But her business does not stop at the online community. She also hosts live events where talented women can meet other talented women to share their passion, experiences and strategies that helped them reach the top. She is also a mother to a beautiful girl whom she calls her inspiration.
3. Danielle Wiebe // @vancitybusinessbabes
With a passion for networking, self-growth and development, and a love for learning from successful women, Danielle Wiebe founded Vancity Business Babes in 2015. Her platform encourages professional women of all walks of life to connect with each other, build a community of local entrepreneurs and create opportunities to work together. She believes in "collaboration - not competition", lifting up and supporting others is what leads to success. Vancity Business Babes is always hosting educational networking events for women to come together, learn and celebrate their hardwork.
4. Joanna Ma // @themodernfort
Joanna Ma, the woman behind The Modern Fort, is a mother to two beautiful children whom she decided to put away her career in behavioral sciences for. But little did she know, this was a blessing in disguise. Her passion for helping others and being kind to those around her did not stop. Almost two years ago, she founded a children's apparel and decor company called The Modern Fort that helps raise awareness for different charitable organizations with a focus on mothers and children, such as Newborn ICU, Fight For Education, and One More Day. Every month, they collaborate in design with these charities, as well as to create products that give back to the community and provoke conversations that are meaningful. From their online blog that raises awareness and gives tips to new mothers, to their adorable children's outfits, The Modern Fort is making change from bottom up.
5. Taylor Hui // @betheroster and @beayoutiful_org
Model, actress, founder of a non-government organization and creator of a fashion label that believes in self-worth, self-appreciation and and inner-beauty, Taylor Hui is making waves in and outside of Vancouver. Having learned personally that many young teens and pre-teen girls suffer from mental illnesses and struggle with self-confidence, she decided to start her own charitable organization to raise awareness for and help make a change. Her NGO, BeaYOUtiful, provides mentorship programs for young girls between 10 and 13 to help build confidence and self-esteem at a young age. Furthermore, earlier this year, she launched her own fashion label, The Roster, that promotes self-confidence for young men and women.
6. Bria Lear // @digidarlings and @frameworkmag
Educator, Photoshop wizard, and marketing expert, founder of Digital Darlings Creative and Framework Magazine, Bria Lear is a woman of many talents. She began her career in fashion design and technology, and soon realized that she had a passion for entrepreneurship and making life happen on her on terms. In 2012, she started her own digital lifestyle magazine, Framework, and it didn't stop there. Recognizing a need for easy-to-understand education of Photoshop and personal branding in an ever advancing world of media, Bria founded Digital Darling Creatives to educate and equip people with the skills for digital design through weekend workshops, mini group tutoring lessons and custom coaching. She is helping women all over Vancouver go from 0 to 100 in digital design.
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