Lioness Magazine has been for me, as I hope it has been for all of our readers, a source of pride for female entrepreneurs. When I was first approached by my colleague and Lioness founder, Natasha Clark, to write a column for this magazine when it launched in 2011 on issuu.com, I was thrilled to be part of a publication solely dedicated to an often overlooked demographic of the business population. I chose to work for Natasha because I believed so strongly in her vision to help support fellow businesswomen; however, I had no idea of the success that would follow as our readership continued to grow and I became editor-in-chief in 2013.
The publication of this month’s issue marks my last as editor-in-chief. The past two years here embody a time in my career that I’ve enjoyed immensely and the decision to pursue alternative professional endeavors was not an easy one; however, all good things, as they say, must come to an end. My only hope for my successor is that she/he will lead this publication with the passion and dedication to its mission that our founder established just a few short years ago. But until then, let’s go out with a bang, shall we?
This month’s issue features a cover story about professional speaker, stage and presence coach, Cindy Ashton, penned by one of my favorite writers, Tara McCollum. Ashton has overcome extraordinary obstacles, having been born with only a 20 percent chance of survival due to heart failure and other physical ailments, in order to become a successful, award-winning female entrepreneur. Ashton speaks candidly to McCollum about her hardships and also offers extensive advice for readers surrounding her areas of expertise: the misconceptions of public speaking, etiquette on announcing nervousness, why we fear public speaking and what we can do, the difference between men and women, being yourself, and her most impactful advice for women. I hope you find her wisdom drive to succeed as inspiring as I have while compiling this month’s issue.
McCollum also penned an additional feature this month about Joan Cheever of the Texas-based Chow Train, a mobile mission dedicated to helping feed the homeless. Her philanthropic endeavors were not without difficulty, however, as the City of San Antonio issued her a ticket with a $2,000 fine, which stated that she was operating her nonprofit from an unlicensed vehicle. Resounding community support and a petition with more than 66,000 signatures no doubt led to the city’s recent dismissal of the case against Cheever.
The aforementioned women are just two of the extraordinary female entrepreneurs and philanthropists that we’ve had the opportunity to feature here at Lioness Magazine and I look forward to reading many more in 2016. It is with bittersweet emotion that I now sign off on my final issue. I thank Natasha and all of our readers for their support of my leadership. I can honestly say that I will truly miss this work immensely! May the New Year bring all involved with Lioness Magazine continued blessings!