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Iconic Founders:  Boldness in Action

Iconic Founders: Boldness in Action

With the launch of WoolTribe comes our first annual Iconic Founders Collection, a group of beanies created specifically to honor women who lead by example, creating change through their bold actions.

I was thrilled to be selected as a member of the 2022 group of Tory Burch Fellows.  Part of the Tory Burch Foundation, the fellows program provides extraordinary support to female business founders, including a deep network of contacts, education grants, ongoing opportunities for collaboration, and much more.  Lifetime membership in the program means having the chance to connect and grow with the most impressive group of women business owners you can possibly imagine.  But perhaps the most powerful thing about the program is its namesake: Tory Burch.  

During our week in New York City for the fellows gathering, we had the privilege of hearing Tory Burch speak with our group. She talked about her determination to create a "patient brand," and her decision to launch her foundation at the same time she was creating her fashion brand.  Her ability to balance patience and boldness seems to be inherent in the fiber of other iconic women we admire as well.

During the course of my fellowship year, my co-founder Sheri and I had the opportunity to connect with Jeanne Carver, the founder of Shaniko Wool Co.  I'd met her before, during one of my freelance writing assignments, and we had plenty of prior experience with Shaniko Wool Co.'s wool through other work we'd done, so connecting with her to chat and brainstorm was an exciting opportunity.  It was during that chat that we shared our desire to create a lifestyle brand offering traceable, American-made products with a fully transparent supply chain.  Jeanne isn't one to shy away from a challenge.  I know this from having heard her talk about personally confronting their Goliath of a bull on the ranch.  So, when she heard what we were thinking of doing she started pulling out all kinds of beautiful products made with Shaniko wool, a glorious American Merino and Rambouillet (or French Merino) blend with all the buttery softness and gorgeous loft you could want for luxury goods.  That's when WoolTribe started to take shape.

Jeanne has done an incredible range of industry-changing things  since reinventing her family's Imperial Stock Ranch, founded in 1871, into Shaniko Wool Co.  Jeanne has been instrumental in the creation and expansion of the Responsible Wool Standard certification program, honored with numerous awards for her work, and asked to speak in front of a wide range of groups about her company and her efforts.  Most recently she has been featured in Our King, the official biography of King Charles III, written by New York Times best-selling writer, Robert Jobson.  According to Shaniko Wool Co., "the book charts Charles's life and reflects on the ideas and issues he has championed along the way, highlighting examples of achievement and progress across social, cultural, technological and commercial spheres - including Shaniko Wool's role in sustainable agriculture and fiber production."

Neither Tory Burch nor Jeanne Carver has shied away from challenges.  They have used their ideals and areas of focus as the fuel to propel their efforts.  As a result, they have changed the lives of countless people, changing industries along the way. These women are truly Iconic Founders.

Shop the collection here:  Iconic Founders Collection


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