Raising children while running a business is no easy feat. Motherhood and business ownership each come with its own unique challenges, and juggling them all can be difficult. However, these four modern African American “mompreneurs” have conquered these challenges and come out on top. Now, their success stories prove to moms everywhere that they don’t have to choose between their careers and their families.
Following an unexpected pregnancy when she was just 17, Altrichia Cook refused to give up on her dream of launching her own business. After working hard to graduate high school and pursue higher education while raising her son, Cook started her own luxury swimwear line. Since then, her designs have appeared in magazines such as Vogue, Marie Claire, and People – one design even appeared on the front of Cosmopolitan, worn by cover girl Nicki Minaj.
After noticing the limited range of skin tones on dolls, Ozi Okaro set out to diversify the toy industry. Seeking to provide her daughters with dolls whose skin color resembled their own, she started her own online business, Ikuzi Dolls. Today, the brand continues to create dolls that showcase a variety of skin colors, hair textures, and eye colors that children of color can relate to.
Roxanne Ferrance’s business was inspired by her son. As they were watching a movie together, her son asked her to make him a particular cake on the screen – a sacher torte. Recreating the dessert sparked Ferrance’s love of baking, and she went on to start her own custom cake and cupcake business, Cake in a Cup NY.
After the birth of her first child, Tamara McNeil began to notice the lack of diversity in children’s books. Hoping to connect mothers with books whose characters their children could identify with, she started Just Like Me!, a subscription box service that sends children’s books featuring African American characters to families each month.
Raising a family and running a business at the same time certainly isn’t easy – but these African American mompreneurs prove that you can have the best of both worlds.