22 of Chicago’s Most Powerful Women Ally for liftUPlift

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE —liftUPlift Inaugural FundraiserPhotoshoot Will Feature 22 Inspirational Women Leading Chicago’s Female Renaissance

CHICAGO, March 19, 2015 — It is easier to find stock images of pregnant women eating salad than it is to find stock images of diverse women creating or collaborating. For Corielle Heath, Founder of a Chicago-based tech startup company, the world of stock photography is a bizarre and sometimes comical reminder that there is no culture for real women. As Heath and her team gear up to launch liftUPlift.com, the first and only e-commerce marketplace populated exclusively by woman-owed businesses, they are turning the shortage of authentic background images into an incredible opportunity to lay the foundation for a whole new consumer culture. This Sunday, March 22, twenty-two of Chicago’s most powerful female leaders will (role) model in liftUPlift: The Photoshoot.

liftUPlift photoshoot

liftUPlift: The Photoshoot is sponsored exclusively by woman-owned businesses, including Holly Kapsalis, Finding Ferdinand, Creative Coworking, Lashbella, Life Elemental, Chykalophia Designs, Kathmandu Yogi, LittleGemsUSA.com, and The Skin Spa .

 

The event will double as liftUPlift Worldwide’s inaugural fundraiser, and it all came together in the last month.

liftUPlift’s Director of Special Events, Holly Kapsalis, is a celebrity stylist and photographer herself. Along with Fetesha Downs, liftUPlift Worldwide’s Fundraising Chair, they quickly gathered a team for the event. Heath and Jones used liftUPlift’s social media channels to issue a call for allies, and the enthusiastic response blew them away. Angela Valavanis, owner of Creative Coworking and Director of CRAVE Chicago, immediately stepped in to hostliftUPlift: The Photoshoot at her venue, an Evanston-based coworking space and art gallery.

Corielle Heath, the Founder of liftUPlift, explains:

“We contacted empowered women in our own network and told them, ‘We’ve encountered this problem and it impacts us all. We want to create the solution, and we need your help.Every single woman we reached out to responded to offer support, in whatever way she could. It reaffirmed the core belief behind our mission — empowered women make change happen.

Rachel Jones, co-founder of liftUPlift Worldwide – the nonprofit arm of liftUPlift – sees something special:

“There is momentum behind women supporting women, here in Chicago, and it does not exist everywhere else…not yet, at least. It is special, and especially powerful, and this is where it starts.”

Nora Brathol, CEO of Arak Pana Consulting, was the first in a line of women CEOs, Founders and Directors to reserve her 1-hour session at the shoot. Soon after, Ari Krzyzek, Creative Director of Chykalophia Design, and Natasha Casanova, Founder of Kathmandu Yogi, enthusiastically threw in their support as both participants and sponsors. Others followed in quick succession, including:

Holly Copeland, Associate Director of Public Affairs & Corporate Social Responsibility, Horizon Pharma, Terri Brax, CEO of TeacherCare and Co-Founder of Women Tech Founders, Sharon Schneider, CEO of Moxie Jeanand Co-Founder of Women Tech Founders, Dima Elissa, CEO of VisMed3D,Shivani Jain, Co-Founder of Fitness Cubed, Gaby Ruiz-Funes, Developer for General Assembly, Nicole Meyerson, Founder of Chicago Coworking Women, Heather Claxton, Co-Founder of Science Solved, Rosey Berroya,Creative Director of Marriage Material App and IT Strategist for United States Gypsum, Angelica Ross, Founder of TransTech Social Enterprises, and more.

Word of the event began to spread, with support and sponsorships coming in from around the country. Nhu Le, Founder of NYC-based Finding Ferdinand, sent their 16-shade lip color palette, so stylists could blend the perfect shades for a diverse group of women.

Other Chicago-based sponsors include Sheila Peterson, Founder of life elemental, DiVina Lewis, Owner of Lashbella, Leslie Voegltin, ofLittleGemsUSA.com, and Shana Irish, of The Skin Spa.

The liftUPlift Alliance represents a comprehensive solution for the empowerment of women as makers, consumers and allies. liftUPlift.com is at the heart of that mission, providing a virtual space where women can own and combine their powers, to create change. By coming together for liftUPlift: The Photoshoot, these powerful women are creating a new consumer culture where girls can see all they can be.