We asked some of the city’s rising stars to reflect on what made a difference in their journey. We asked them to tell us about what they think the most important factor has been behind their success.

Ronnie Shaw | Founder & CEO

My father, he laid a strong foundation for my knowledge, ethnics, skills, mindset, and connections. Read more>>

Desiree McBride | Owner and instructor at Lagree Fit & Versa Fit

I think the most important factor behind my success and my brand’s success is the passion I have for what I do and wanting to share that with everyone! I have always loved being active, I started played sports and dancing as a small child, continued playing sports and cheering through high school, I went on to study Kinesiology at SDSU and became an elementary PE teacher shorty after. So you can say that health and wellness have always been passions of mine. I fell in love with the Lagree method over 10 years ago as a student. I quickly became an instructor and new that one day I would open up a studio of my own. With the help of my amazing husband, Scott McBride, Lagree Fit came to life in April of 2018. I am at the studio daily! I teach classes, I take classes, I help at the front desk, I do all the little things that no one sees, and I love all of it! If you take one of my classes, you will instantly feel my enthusiasm for this method, I get excited every time I teach! I have seen my passion rub off on others in the best possible ways. Read more>>

Christina Long | Global Creative Director & Founder of #blkgrlswurld ZINE

Bringing my entire self to my business projects is the key for me. I am absolutely a polymath or what some call a multi-hyphenate creative, with a lot of interests that adults often criticized me for in my youth. Everyone kept telling me I wouldn’t get anywhere without specializing in a specific skillset, but digital media and brand strategy have allowed creatives like me to learn and flourish in as many spaces and industries as we wish to in a simultaneous manner. I launched #blkgrlswurld ZINE in 2014 to publish books that center womxn of color in the heavy metal scene, while my other business edCircle.org provides eLearning services to corporations and universities across the country. And third, I launched The Leadership Institute for Womxn of Color, a digital learning platform that provides womxn with professional development content. Read more>>

No Car Garage | Yoga Instructor & Dentist

The most important factor behind NCG’s success is balance. We believe we have found the right mix of discipline while also having fun to make every song work. Whenever we’ve tried to focus solely on form and fundamentals, our songs sounded bland. The more we tried to channel what we felt when we wrote it, the more the songs came to life. Also, we’ve added two new members within the last year and learned meshing takes time and that is perfectly fine. Overall, we have enjoyed the process and look forward to what is to come. Read more>>

Victoria Givens | Facial Plastic Surgeon

PERSEVERANCE. To understand perseverance is to have encountered adversity and failure only to rise up again, to know that discipline and focus far outweigh any predetermined disadvantage, to realize that it’s not that it can’t be done but that it just hasn’t been done yet, and to know your worth even when others don’t. Because everyone wants to be successful until they realize what it actually takes. A truly successful person knows that risks are always involved, criticism is inevitable, sacrifices will be made, rejection is part of life, and the courage to invest in yourself is required. I realized a long time ago that if your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough. Building a brand and opening my business Givens Facial Plastic Surgery in Austin, Texas, in the midst of COVID-19 was less than ideal timing, but I took the risk and never looked back. As a female facial plastic surgeon, I strive to offer a comprehensive, customized approach designed to reveal unrivaled yet natural aesthetic results for those who refuse to settle for anything less than the very best. Read more>>