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NEW YORK, NY, May 14, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- The Story Exchange, the leading nonprofit media site for women business owners, has released its first-ever Young Women to Watch list, showcasing 10 female entrepreneurs under age 35 who are reshaping industries, developing innovative products or spearheading social change.
The list includes Melody McCloskey, whose venture-backed startup, StyleSeat, gives beauty professionals access to online scheduling, and Ann-Erica Whitemarsh, whose social enterprise, Rascal Rodeo, allows special-needs people an opportunity to enjoy rodeos. Elizabeth Rees of Chasing Paper invented a new type of removable wallpaper, while Sara Cinnamon of Abiogenix created a device to help people take their medications better. See the full list below.
"The young women who made it onto our list came of age during a difficult economic period, yet they are achieving entrepreneurial success in even non-traditional industries, such as technology and transportation," said Victoria Wang, co-founder of The Story Exchange. "The anecdotal evidence suggests that young women have more resources to tap and more female role models to emulate than in the past. Young women are taking their economic destinies into their own hands more so than any previous generation."
In order to be considered, applicants had to be innovators under the age of 35 who either started their businesses alone or - if they have male co-founders or employees - are the main leaders of their companies.
Video: See why women's entrepreneurship is important.
The Story Exchange received applications from 80 women, most based in the United States (particularly near entrepreneurial ecosystems on the East and West coasts) but some in Australia, Romania, the U.K. and other countries. Some 70% have created jobs, with the majority employing two to five workers. Most (65%) are self-funded, though 7% have received angel or venture capital funding. Of the 43 applicants who disclosed current sales, nearly half indicated revenue at or exceeding $100,000. Five listed revenue above $1 million.
The Story Exchange's Young Women to Watch list:
- Abigail Falik, 34, Global Citizen Year, a bridge-year program - Oakland, Calif.
- Alexis Wolfer, 29, TheBeautyBean.com, an online magazine - Los Angeles, Calif.
- Ann-Erica Whitemarsh, 30, Rascal Rodeo, a special-needs event - Pasco, Wash.
- Elizabeth Rees, 29, Chasing Paper, a maker of removable wallpaper - New York, N.Y.
- Amanda Judge, 33, Faire Collection, a retailer of fair-trade goods - Brooklyn, N.Y.
- Melody McCloskey, 29, StyleSeat, a beauty-booking app - San Francisco, Calif.
- Allyson Downey, 34, weeSpring, a peer-review site for baby gear - New York, N.Y.
- Sara Cinnamon, 34, Abiogenix, a maker of smart pill box - San Francisco, Calif.
- Polina Raygorodskaya, 28, Wanderu, a portal for ground travel - Boston, Mass.
- Giovanna Scheidler, 31, OvaPal, a maker of fertility-tracking patch - San Diego, Calif.
Read more about this year's Young Women to Watch by visiting The Story Exchange's website.
The Story Exchange is a nonprofit media organization that produces videos and articles about women business owners, with the aim of providing role models to entrepreneurial women around the world. The organization was founded in 2011 by former banker Victoria Wang and documentary filmmaker Sue Williams. The Story Exchange is a regular contributor to The New York Times and a partner with Babson College on 1,000 Stories, an ongoing research project that promotes the economic independence of women through entrepreneurship.
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