We reached out to some of our favorite entrepreneurs and asked them to think back and tell us about how they decided to start a business. Check out their responses below.

J. Ross Parrelli | Hip Hop Educator, Emcee, & Youth Advocate

I used to watch Tupac documentaries and I remember the narrator in his deep voice saying something to the degree that, there were times Pac didn’t eat. He just didn’t think about it. This is the true creator’s mind. Pac has always been a creator of space, culture, music, vibes, and politics. When the moment captures you and the only thing that matters is not matter at all. Read more>>

Bailey Beaulieu | Photographer and Mother

Truthfully, I began my journey into photography for the same reason as a lot of other women do, to capture my children. I had my son and realized how quickly it goes-by, so I dug out my camera and started capturing him- around the house, themed sessions for holidays or milestones- then I realized, I wanted to do this for others. I wanted to give every other person the same gift of capturing themselves, their loved ones, their moments, to cherish for the rest of their lives and for generations to come. Read more>>

Alice Bloomfield | Certified Pedatric Sleep Consultant

Most people start their own business to pursue financial success, freedom, or perhaps to have a creative outlet. Me? I started my business because my baby would not sleep more than 45 minutes EVER! I was exhausted. A total walking zombie. Read more>>

Rob Gutro | Author, Medium and Pet medium

I’m an author (self-published) and medium in my after-hours career, and I didn’t set out to make that a business, but it worked into it by following my instincts and heart, and wanting to share my experiences and bring healing and understanding to others. I’m a scientist by trade, so I use the science of energy to explain the afterlife. Since I was 13, I had the gift of communicating with people and pets on the other side, and I journaled my experiences to help teach others what I learned. Read more>>

Edmar Rodriguez | Flooring contractor

I’ve seen the struggles my dad had to go through. I thought to myself that I couldn’t let that go in vain. Him and my mom came from Mexico to give my sister , brother , and me a better future. I feel like the sacrifices they made have to be paid back sooner or later. I first started working for a flooring company my dad was in when I was 16. I would go work every summer with him at his job. Read more>>

Mark Gruszynski, M.D. | Plastic Surgeon

Undergoing plastic surgery is often a life-changing experience, and I believe that experience extends far beyond the day of surgery. Starting my own business afforded me the opportunity to curate the entire journey for patients, from their first correspondence with my office to their long-term follow-up. I also studied finance & accounting at the Goizueta Business School at Emory, and I’ve always been interested in the challenges and rewards of business development & growth. Read more>>

Joe Ray | Artist

My thought process was this: I like doing this. I’m good at it and people have been collecting my art for years, let me grow this. This was a switch in mindset for me. I had been a fine artist for several years and had been exhibiting in shows around town, as well as in other states, but it was in the last few years that I realized that I was running another business. This is in addition to my mainstay business; Maximo Branding, which my wife and I own and operate. Read more>>

Tricia Karabas | Owner

Short Version To provide a culture in which my employees know they start with trust, honesty, and respect from the start. We are a business that catches employees doing great things. My goal has been to create a space where everyone knows they are essential to our success. I want a culture where we honestly look at each other as humans and treat each other with the utmost care and concern. Read more>>