Introducing our virtual workshop series

Female Founders Roundtables


We started the female founders community this year for International Women's Day, to bring together entrepreneurial women in Chicago for a roundtable discussion about equality, collaboration and identity. During these challenging times, we aim to strengthen our community by welcoming more female founders into the network for a series of panels and workshops to inspire the female founders of the future.
These workshops will be collaborative and instructional, with an audience of fellow founders, entrepreneurial women, and students.

Here are some of the amazing women leading our discussions!

Sheila Patel

Sheila is the founder of the Life Bags Company, kicking off our workshop series with a session focused on social impact and collaborations.

Emily Burnett

Emily is the founder, CEO and creative director for Burnett New York, a women's luxury brand built by women, for all women. Before she founded Burnett, she was the creative director at Dennis Basso. 

Kylee Alexander

Kylee is a Chicago based designer specializing in fur design, conceptual womenswear and traditional craftsmanship. She is also a cofounder of She Makes Chicago and is dedicated to improving the landscape for creative entrepreneurship within her city.

Sharon Brand

Sharon is the founder of Brand's Media Group, where she helps brands, influencers, and entrepreneurs elevate their online presence and increase their sales through branding and marketing initiatives.

Sararose Krenger

Sararose is a Chicago-based designer, known for her fashion and lifestyle publication and Stix and Roses, a vegan and sustainable fashion line. She welcomes a community of creatives with a shared love for purpose driven beauty, food, and style. 

Natasha Pearl Hansen

Natasha is a comedian, actress and producer joining a conversation on women in the entertainment industry. She recently hosted a comedy show fundraiser with Boss Comedy to support our Covid-19 aid projects in India.

Diandra Lammens

Diandra is a Chicago based entrepreneur and e-commerce expert. She founded Matty and Lou, an online boutique featuring comfy, trendy clothing. 

Vania Tafur

Vania is a textile expert, instructor, and award winning fashion designer based in Peru. She is also the design coordinator and head of production for Reuben Oliver, a limited edition knitwear brand.

Rylie Cooke

Rylie is an Australian born and New York City based creative who works across design fields from fashion journalism and PR to marketing, social media and graphic design. She founded Balmy Skin at the start of this year after struggling with finding confidence in her skin. Balmy Skin is dedicated to creating empowering products, with a focus on local sourcing and all natural vegan ingredients. At Parsons School of Design, Rylie is pursing a BFA. 

Audrey Mooney

Audrey founded a multimedia company, AM Productions, that streamlines photography, videography & content development for businesses and organizations. She assists individuals that are looking to commemorate experiences or events, grow their brand and online presence with aesthetic imagery, and sharpen their social media. Audrey will graduate in 2021 from Florida State University with a double major in economics and entrepreneurship. 

Lauren Pingad

Lauren  is currently a senior at DePaul University studying business management with a concentration in entrepreneurship, as well as a double major in Chinese studies, minor international business, and global Fluency. Outside of  her studies, she is one of the founders of FashionMasks which specializes in making the most comfortable, highest quality face mask. 

Amelia Annen

Amelia Annen is one of the founding members of Invisible Disco Productions, a theatre production company based in New York City established by an all-female team including Lauren Montes, Thea Throndson, and Deniz Bulat. In February 2020, Annen's one-woman show, "This Feeling" premiered at the Frigid Fringe Festival in New York City and won the Queerly Award which provided the opportunity for the show to run as part of the Queerly Virtual Festival this July. Amelia will graduate from NYU in May 2020 with a BFA in Drama with a minor in Creative Writing. 

Kimberly Pace Arquilla

Kimberly founded Work+Shop after a successful career at PriceWaterhouse Cooper by pooling her resources, connections and business acumen to create a safe space where other women can evolve into their next phase of life and work.

Patti Morrow

Patti is a health and wellness advisor with certifications in health and life coaching, nutrition, yoga and sports massage. She serves as a mentor and motivator to connect your mind, body, and spirit.

Sarah Jackson

Sarah founded Seven Summits Pictures and Management, a talent management company in Los Angeles, where she launched the careers of many successful actors. She will be leading a discussion with women in the entertainment industry.

Mel McSherry

As an entrepreneur since 2010, Mel has launched two successful businesses, tripled her annual income, and become an Amazon Best Selling author, all while raising an eight year old son. She has worked with thousands of people, slashing their stress by showing them how to prioritize their time, their profit avenues and themselves correctly so they can create the business, money and life they want, in the time that they have!

Upcoming Workshops

June 24: Collaborations with Sheila Patel
June 29: 10 Social Media Secrets ALL Business Owners Should Know with Sharon Brand
July 8: The Future of Fashion and Sustainability
July 15: Women in Entertainment with Sarah Jackson
July 22: Female Founders of the Future


If you're a female founder looking to get involved, email