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“We age not by years, but by stories.” —Unknown

Mazda Ranked Most Fuel-efficient Automaker by the EPA for the Fourth Year in a Row. MAZDA NAMED

2017 Best Car Brand

MAZDA’S 2015 FLEET OFFERS THE HIGHEST ADJUSTED MPG. Based on the EPA’s Light-Duty Automotive Technology, Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and Fuel Economy Trends: 1975 - 2015 report on MY 2015 vehicles.

www.usnews.com - Nov. 15, 2016. 2017 Best Vehicle Brand Awards. The awards recognize the brands whose vehicles perform the best on an overall basis within four major categories of the U.S. News vehicle rankings: Cars, SUVs, Trucks and Luxury.



INTRODUCING THE ALL-NEW 2017 MAZDA CX-5. NOW EVEN BETTER. Announcing a new level of engineering and design. Bolder. More athletic and refined. Born from the DNA that created the best-selling Mazda CUV of all time. The All-New 2017 Mazda CX-5. Like every Mazda, it’s built for people who love driving. Stunning new design radiates from every corner, curve and detail. Exceptional driving dynamics connect you to the road. If you appreciate style, you’ll love this new Mazda. See one for yourself at any Roger Beasley Mazda location.



866-779-8409 • M-F 8:30AM - 9:00PM | Sat 8:30AM - 8:00PM

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Italy through


departures daily Come experience Italy at Copenhagen. We have assembled a wonderful collection of some of the best designs from Italy’s finest manufacturers. All these products display a sense of purpose and pride through intelligent design and caring craftsmanship. Selective use of practical materials and thoughtful engineering result in products that meet high quality standards while maintaining exceptional value. Come see why Italy has long been regarded as the center of today’s modern design world. Visit Copenhagen for an Italian design experience you won’t soon forget. You will be inspired.

Palladio leather sofa by Nicoline Design Studio, Italy. Classic details combine with contemporary styling to produce a stunning sofa that is undeniably sophisticated. Design by Tita Fineo, the Palladio sofa imparts a style that is rooted in the past while reinforcing today’s clean design trends. From stock as shown or custom order from a significant collection of leather or fabric. Direct import by Copenhagen.


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TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY with Disney’s “Photo Mom” Me Ra Koh Sunday, June 25 from 2 to 8pm - Georgetown, TX Is getting paid to travel and take photos one of your dreams? Do you love exploring new destinations with your camera, but wonder how you can get your work published? Join us for an entertaining workshop with Sony Artisan and Disney host Me Ra Koh and her husband Brian Tausend, also an award-winning photographer and cinematographer. This dynamic duo is going to open the world of travel photography! In the charming town of Georgetown, Texas, you will learn the essential image elements every travel piece needs for publication, as well as the different travel genres to choose from.

Cost: $199


Architectural Fine Art Photography

Sun, June 4 from 1pm to 4pm

Mon, June 5 from 1pm to 6pm

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Portraits In Depth 4 Week Series

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June 16 from 6 to 9pm

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& 17 from 9am to 12pm, Cost: $219

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Have old film reels and VHS tapes filled with special moments from the past? Have them transfered to a DVD or USB. From $34.99.

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Have albums full of family photos? Have your them scanned onto a DVD or USB. Scan 500 prints for just $99.99.

Film Scans

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Plastic Surgery from a Woman’s Perspective. 2017 Super Doctors® Rising Stars® honoree Dr. Christine Fisher is inspired daily as she works with her patients, undergoing cosmetic surgery of the breast and body due to pregnancy or aging, or to restore the breast after cancer treatment. For breast reconstruction patients, Dr. Fisher offers natural options such as DIEP Flap reconstruction, implant-based and nipple-sparing reconstruction, and ‘hidden scar’ techniques resulting in no scars on the front of the breast. For cosmetic patients, she offers re-shaping of the breast with breast augmentation or reduction, and body-shaping procedures such as tummy tucks and liposuction. Call today to speak with her patient care team, who will help you navigate the restorative journey. 1015 E. 32nd St Ste 306 | Plaza St. David | Austin, TX 78705


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Photo by Rudy Arocha.



Photo by Natalie Paramore.





64 T O MARKET Flavors of Summer 66 FOOD NEWS Killa Wasi 68 G  IRL WALKS INTO A BAR Drinks on the DL

Five Must-dos for June

SAVVY WOMEN 24 COUNT US IN Women in Numbers 26 B OTTOM LINE Your Child Can Start a Business 28 F ROM THE DESK OF KOOP Radio’s Youngest Hosts 30 G  IVE BACK Hispanic Scholarship Consortium’s Ashley Moyer


Filmmakers Selen Flores and Hannah Smith 1950 Collective’s Angela Jin and Nishiki



WELLNESS 70 WAITING ROOM Cervical Cancer 74 E AT THIS, NOT THAT Snack Attack 76 H  ER ROUTINE Courtney Okolo

POINT OF VIEW 78 M  EMO FROM JB Minds of Change 80 I AM AUSTIN WOMAN Frances Sheinberg

A Musician’s Guide to Havana, Cuba Five Books for Summer

STYLE + HOME 40 TRENDS Dress Debut 44 MAKE ROOM East Austin Living

12 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

ON THE COVER Photo by Rudy Arocha, rudyarochaphotography.com Styled by Ashley Hargrove, dtkaustin.com

Shot on location at Spider House, 2908 Fruth St., 512.480.9562, spiderhouse.com. Leith Pink Blossom swing dress, $65, available at Nordstrom, 2901 S. Capital of Texas Hwy., 512.691.3500, nordstrom.com.

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Sarah E. Ashlock, Jill Case, Kelly DiNardo, JB Hager, Natalie Paramore, Rachel Rascoe, Alessandra Rey, Kat Sampson, Gretchen M. Sanders, Frances Sheinberg, Darcy Sprague, Emma Whalen

Because our readers look to us to help them make informed choices, including which doctors to see, we have launched a powerful digital solution—ATXDOCTORS.COM.

CONTRIBUTE TO ATXDOCTORS.COM Become a part of our online directory featuring Austin’s leading doctors and health-care centers


Carol Anders, Rudy Arocha, Kelly DiNardo, Casey Dunn, Kevin Garner, Ashley Hargrove, David Hasler, John Edward Hernandez, Angel E. Houston, Kirby Lee, Kerri Lohmeier, Sarah Brooke Lyons, Bruce Malone, Lisa Muñoz, Natalie Paramore, Tina Phan, Justin Rouhier, Madelynne Scales, Jessica Wetterer, Tim Williams

Answer our readers frequently asked health questions in an exclusive Ask An Expert article


Showcase your business and experience with an in-depth doctor profile page


Caitlin Candelari


Monica Hand, Alessandra Rey, Emma Whalen


Emily C. Laskowski, Deborah Hamilton-Lynne, Mary Anne Connolly, Elizabeth Eckstein

Austin Woman is a free monthly publication of AW Media Inc., and is available at more than 1,250 locations throughout Austin and in Lakeway, Cedar Park, Round Rock and Pflugerville. All rights reserved. For submission requirements, visit awmediainc.com/contribute. No part of the magazine may be reprinted or duplicated without permission. Visit us online at austinwomanmagazine.com. Email us at info@awmediainc.com. 512.328.2421 • 3921 Steck Ave., Suite A111, Austin, TX 78759

Physicians and healthcare providers, we welcome your participation. Please contact us at: sales@awmediainc.com or 512.328.2421


Exhibit A: I wouldn’t be writing this letter right now if it weren’t for the support of my parents. June, our Young Women to Watch issue, is one of my favorite magazine issues to work on. I mean that in all honesty. Just ask my interns. I’ve been gushing about this issue for months now. Why? It gives us the opportunity to turn our attention to the next generation of Austin women, those who will be the next leaders of this city. With this theme in mind, I’ve been reflecting on who I was eight years ago. This would have been around the same time our cover woman, Jackie Venson, had already mastered the piano and was about to foray into becoming a virtuoso of blues guitar. The year was 2009, and it was about the same time some of the most popular Austin-based blogs today—including Jane Ko’s, one of the women profiled in our feature story on the business of blogging—were just getting their start. At the time, I was a freshman in college with ambitious plans to major in environmental science. It was quite the change from my original plan to become a skilled equestrian and horse trainer, but my parents helped me purchase the physics and chemistry textbooks anyway. As incoming freshmen are occasionally inclined to do, I held that major for a solid two weeks before taking

Join the conversation @AustinWoman #TheYW2WIssue

16 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

another 180-degree turn, deciding instead—officially this time, I promised—to major in Spanish. Fast-forward two years, and I was semi-fluent, giving 15-minute presentations on the culture of Peru in front of my classmates. Then, one semester, I decided to take an elective course in journalism. The rest, as they say, is history. It’s impressive my parents never lost their sanity or withdrew their endearing, steadfast support. Instead, every time I came to them with a new idea—an epiphany—they would nod their heads, smile and start poring through confusing course schedules with me. Their support only came with one condition: I simply had to answer the question, “Is this what you really want to do?” It’s refreshing to read this issue’s stories and resonate with each of these young women. From a professional pianist turned blues guitarist, a nutrition major and business minor turned food blogger, an assistant wedding coordinator turned luxury-travel advisor and a physical-therapy student turned fashion influencer, each of these ladies has experienced her own winding journey that led her to where she is now. Speak with them in person and they’ll be the first to tell you that, although they’ve had to push through a lot of late nights to get to where they stand today, they wouldn’t trade the pursuit of their passions for the world. So, right now, as a fun experiment, I want you to think back eight years. Reflect on all you’ve been through to get to where you are today. Then ask yourself, “Is this what I really want to do?” Sincerely,


Photo by Lisa Muñoz.


upport is crucial to success. I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that, but it’s a reminder I found reiterated throughout this issue. Whether that support comes from a friend, a family member, your significant other, your peers, a teacher, your cadre of social-media followers or—better yet—from within, we all thrive on support.

You don’t have to accept a different standard of

beauty because you’ve previously had cancer.

Austin’s premier breast reconstruction surgeon, Elisabeth Potter MD, takes a personal approach to breast reconstruction. Dr. Potter was Fellowship trained at MD Anderson in Microsurgery and Plastic Surgery Reconstruction and is Board Certified in Plastic Surgery. Call 512.867.6211 to schedule a consultation. 6818 Austin Center Boulevard, Suite 204 Austin, Texas 78731



austiN s y m p ho N y orchestra

This month, we asked our contributors: When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?


COVER PHOTOGRAPHER, “STRIKING A CHORD,” PAGE 48 Photographer Rudy Arocha is a native Texan who moved to Austin to pursue his education in fine arts as a sculptor. He later rediscovered his passion for photography when his grandfather gave him a camera as a gift. Rudy graduated from the Art Institute of Austin and specializes in portrait photography. When not photographing, Rudy enjoys music, the outdoors and spending time with his wife, Maggie. “Since I grew up in the ’80s I wanted to be characters from my favorite movies, a fighter pilot, a Goonie, a martial artist and an artist. I landed on artist!”


COVER WRITER, “STRIKING A CHORD,” PAGE 48 Rachel Rascoe is a freelance writer and multimedia journalist based in Austin. She studies journalism and biology at the University of Texas. A former intern at Austin Woman, Rachel has also written for The Daily Texan and Orange Magazine. She is currently interning with KUTX 98.9 FM.

your perfect

“When I was a kid, I wanted to be an author. I was going to write the stories and my best friend was going to draw the pictures for them. Then I wanted to be a doctor after watching Scrubs and Grey’s Anatomy.”

Date Night

starts here



Natalie Paramore started her blog, natalieparamore.com, as a way to share about what she was cooking and eating in Austin. Since then, she has grown her site to include travel and lifestyle and, of course, food! She loves using fresh, seasonal and local ingredients in the dishes she creates.

upcomiNg eveNts: June 2 & 3, 8:00 p.m. Fascinating Gershwin™ ryan Shirar, piano alicia Hall Moran and destan owens, vocals Long Center’s dell Hall

“When I was a kid, I wanted to be a stock broker in New York City! My grandparents would even get me subscriptions to The Wall Street Journal for my birthday.” george gerSHwin

June 17, 7:30 p.m. Austin Symphony Sarah and ernest Butler Texas Young Composers Concert david in-Jae Cho, conductor Long Center’s dell Hall


tickets/info Sea So n Sp o n So r S

Download the app:

ButLer texaS Young Connect: CoMpoSerS ConCert

Download the app:


Download the app:


Download the app:


Download the app:


Download the app:


Download the app:


(512) 476-6064 or austinsymphony.org

M e d ia S ponS orS



All artists, programs, and dates subject to change.

Kelly DiNardo keeps expecting to be told to get a “real” job. In the meantime, she loves that her job involves traveling the world and experimenting with different activities, from uphill skiing and belly dancing to race-car driving. As a freelance journalist, Kelly has done all of this and more for a variety of publications, including The New York Times, O: The Oprah Magazine and National Geographic. She is also the author of Gilded Lili: Lili St. Cyr and the Striptease Mystique and the forthcoming Journaling the Sutras. “Believe it or not, I wanted to be a journalist when I grew up.”

CONNECT WITH US! CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF THIS ISSUE? Check us out at austinwomanmagazine.com.

➥ More music. We catch up with Phoebe Hunt & The Gatherers ahead of

their performance at The Paramount June 2, the same day the Austinraised Americana songwriter and fiddler releases her new album, Shanti’s Shadow. In May, Hunt was named by Rolling Stone as one of the 10 New Country Artists You Need to Know.

➥ More fun T-shirts. As the owner and designer of Austin-based lifestyle

clothing brand Daisy Natives, Sarah Eckett is channeling her style sense to empower women. Step into her studio to hear how she uses fashion to embrace female solidarity.

➥ More self-care. A licensed therapist, podcaster and the voice behind the blog Redefine Enough (redefineenough.com), Davia Roberts shares her game plan for creating a mental-health-focused community and online support hub for women.

➥ More artistry. We list the many reasons why you should move a Women & Their Work art-gallery outing to the top of your bucket list this summer.



MILK + HONEY SPA GIVEAWAY Summer is officially here and so is Milk + Honey Spa’s newest seasonal scrub: mint mojito. Made with organic sugar and refreshing lime and spearmint essential oils, this invigorating scrub gently buffs away dull, dry skin. The mint mojito scrub is available for a limited time as part of Milk + Honey’s treatments.

Art Bra Austin June 3, 6 to 10 p.m. Austin Convention Center, 500 E. Cesar Chavez St. artbraaustin.org Austin Symphony Concerts in the Park June 4, 11, 18 and 25, 7:30 p.m. Hartman Concert Park at The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive austinsymphony.org/events

To celebrate the scrub’s debut, we’ve teamed up with the spa—which now has four locations in the Austin area—to give one lucky reader the chance to win a mint mojito manicure and pedicure.

Austin Young Chamber Casino Social June 9, 6 to 10 p.m. Brazos Hall, 204 E. Fourth St. austinyc.org/event/9th-annual-ayc-casino-social

To enter, keep an eye on our Instagram account, @AustinWoman, for the giveaway announcement in June. Word to the wise: We like to be spontaneous. A winner will be chosen and notified at the end of the month.



20 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017


Polished Austin Luncheon June 21, noon to 1 p.m. Uncle Julio’s, 301 Brazos St. polishedonline.org



@ austinwoman

Phoebe Hunt photo by Evan Felts. Milk + Honey Spa photo by Michelle Bedrosian.

Femme Film Fridays June 2, 7 to 9:30 p.m. Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 Congress Ave. thestoryoftexas.com/visit/calendar

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Music festivals break barriers and establish common ground. • Muddy Waters' acoustic guitar played at the Newport Folk Festival • Hand-drawn map of Woodstock • John Mellencamp's corduroy jacket worn at Farm Aid • Photos and videos of the top music festival performances of all time! Curated by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland, Ohio. Support for the Bullock Museum’s exhibitions and education programs provided by the Texas State History Museum Foundation.






Exhibit On View Now






Check out the June agenda from our favorite local insiders. THIRD ANNUAL FRIED CHICKEN THROWDOWN “Winner, winner, chicken dinner! I’ll be getting my hands on Texas’ best fried chicken from Austin chefs like Jack Gilmore, as well as chefs from Houston, San Antonio and Round Top. Since this event takes place in Round Top, I’ll be helping myself to a slice of pie afterwards at Royers Pie Haven.” June 4, 2 to 4:30 p.m. | Royers Round Top Café, 105 Main St., Round Top, Texas txfriedchickenthrowdown.splashthat.com | Tickets are $35.

Jane Ko @atasteofkoko

“Blues on the Green is Austin’s longest-running free music series, and it’s a summer staple. Veterans know the drill, but for first-time attendees, here is the rundown: You can bring in water bottles­—cough, cough­­—wine in water bottles, blankets, chairs and your dog. (Note: They must be on a leash at all times.) My best piece of advice is to either ride your bike, carpool, take the bus or walk, if you can. Parking and traffic around Zilker can be quite the headache.” June 14, 8 p.m. | Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Road kgsr.com/promotions/blues-on-the-green | Live music is free.

Kristy Owen @365thingsaustin

DIANA GREENBERG: SOLO SHOW “As an artist, I’m inspired by the work of other artists. When it’s hot in summer, I like to visit local art galleries so I can stay cool indoors. In particular, I’m excited about the June show of Diana Greenberg. Her work is permanently installed at the often photographed Cafe No Sé in the South Congress Hotel.” June 3 through July 1, Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wally Workman Gallery, 1202 W. Sixth St. | wallyworkmangallery.com | Admission is free.

Katie Kime @katie_kime

IN THE LIGHT YOGA SERIES “All are invited to a free one-hour yoga class at Pan Am Park to participate in sun salutations, healthy movement and good vibes. This class is hosted by Solstice Festival and Practice Yoga Austin.” June 3, 10 to 11:30 a.m. | Pan Am Park, 2100 E. Third St. practiceyogaaustin.com/workshops-and-events/light-yoga-series-4 | Admission is free.

Adriene Mishler @yogawithadriene

KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD FEST AND 5K “Whether you choose to race or spectate from the sidelines, this is one 5K you don’t want to miss. Just when you question whether Austin can still retain its status of ‘weird,’ this event comes along and washes away any doubt. Dress up in your most oddball race attire for a chance to win the costume contest, or savor the people-watching, grab some grub from a food-truck vendor and listen to the live-music lineup.” —April Cumming June 24, 4 to 9 p.m. | downtown Austin, locations vary keepaustinweirdfest.com | Tickets start at $27.

Austin Woman @austinwoman

22 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Diana Greenberg photo by Dennis Burnett. Blues on the Green photo by Michael Mallard. Keep Austin Weird Fest and 5K photo by Brian Fitzsimmons.






Dr. V holds educational lectures on genetic defects and their role in anxiety, depression, neurochemical imbalances and chronic inflammation and disease.

The future of medicine Precision medicine The Master Key

Part 1 of a 5 part series called, “A Gut Feeling.” NEXT LECTURE: When: 2nd Thursday of each month and more Where: People’s Rx | S. Lamar 7:00PM June 8th: Leaky Gut Syndrome: The Link Between Inflammation and Epigenetics RSVP: 512.328.0505

Re-writing the Rules of Disease Methylation Mutations Autoimmune Diseases Anxiety and Depression Chronic Fatigue ADD/ADHD Sleep Disorders IBS/Gut Disorders

Dr. Elena Villanueva • Dr. Tenesha Wards • Dr. Amanda Massey AustinHolisticDr.com 5000 Davis Ln., Ste. 106, Austin, TX 78749 • 512.328.0505

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Waxing Permanent Eyeliner, Eyebrow, Lips and much more. Areola and Scar Camouflage DaVinci Teeth Whitening Natural Spray Tan Medi System Ear Piercing Deep Tissue Swedish Hot Stone Massage by Whisper (512) 944-0754 Massages and Facials by Rebecca Swaine, LMT (971) 404-4448


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Facts and figures on females from throughout the world. BY EMMA WHALEN, ILLUSTRATIONS BY JESSICA WETTERER

4 That’s the number of professional sports beats on deck at The Washington Post, the first major newspaper to have women reporting in each department. According to the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, 88.3 percent of sports reporters are men and, on average, 90 percent of those reporters are white. Earlier this year, The Washington Post announced it now has Liz Clarke covering the Washington Redskins, Candace Buckner covering the Wizards, Chelsea Janes covering the Nationals and Isabelle Khurshudyan covering the Washington Capitals. Some of these women writers played sports before getting into reporting, while others fell into reporting on sports almost by accident. But all of them write about sports because of their love for the games. No matter their backgrounds, their dedication to their craft has clearly set them apart.

70 Percent A new study on young adults conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau found 70 percent of young women ages 25 to 34 are working full-time, year-round jobs. This is a 21 percent increase from 1975, when just 49 percent of young women were employed year-round. The study also found that in that same time frame, the percentage of young women earning more than $60,000 jumped from 2 percent to 13 percent. All this employment progress comes with an interesting twist. While young women appear to be forging ahead, young men are reportedly falling behind. Compared with the female population, the percentage of young men working full time and year-round has remained stagnant, at about 85 percent, while the percentage of males earning less than $30,000 a year increased from 25 percent to 41 percent.

8 Weeks

Pro tennis star Serena Williams was eight weeks pregnant when she won the Australian Open. It can be infuriating when anyone tries to suggest Williams isn’t one of the greatest athletes alive—male or female. Williams has now set the bar even higher by winning a major title while pregnant. However, she is not the only female athlete to compete in a major sporting event while pregnant. Middledistance runner Alysia Montaño ran the 800-meter race at the U.S. Track and Field Championships while she was eight months pregnant. And Kerri Walsh Jennings played beach volleyball at the 2012 London Olympics while she was five weeks pregnant—and took home a gold medal. These are just a few of the incredible female athletes continuing to defy the odds, compete—pregnant or not—and prove that women’s athletics deserves more credit.

38 Percent According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 38 percent of wives in the U.S. earn more than their husbands. In these cases, one in three of the higher earning women is the sole breadwinner of the household. This means in relationships in which both husband and wife are employed, about 29 percent have a higher earning wife. This is an 11 percent increase from 1987, when only 18 percent of women in equally employed relationships earned more than their husbands. While these increases indicate significant progress for women, some data suggest it could also indicate problems for marriages. Researchers from Cornell University and the University of Chicago found that in relationships in which the woman earns more than the man, divorce rates or the chance of the man cheating increase. However, important factors neither study took into account include the satisfaction of one’s marriage from the start or other extenuating factors that may lead to troubled marriages.

70 Years Old That’s how old Kathrine Switzer was when she ran her ninth Boston Marathon. Switzer was the first woman to ever run in the Boston Marathon, when she was 20 years old in 1967. Wearing the same bib number—261—to race in, Switzer completed this year’s race in four hours, 44 minutes and 31 seconds. In the time gap between running her first marathon in 1967 and her most recent, Switzer started the nonprofit organization 261 Fearless, which organizes running groups for women throughout the country. This year, a total of 11,973 women finished the Boston Marathon.

24 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Schedule your 3D mammogram* at ARA Get yearly exams starting at 40 Choose ARA for expertise and convenience

Locations and information at ausrad.com Request an appointment at ausrad.com or call 512.453.6100 *Also known as breast tomosynthesis.





As a parent, here are six approachable steps to take. BY EMMA WHALEN

When grade-school students are caught daydreaming in class, they’re often told to focus back in on the lesson at hand. But what if they were encouraged to daydream more and turn their ideas into reality? Cristal Glangchai had this idea in mind when, in 2013, she founded the nonprofit VentureLab, an educational program that fosters the entrepreneurial spirit in young adults. With a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering, Glangchai first became aware of the importance of an entrepreneurial mindset when she took a technology-commercialization course. She would later apply the skill set she learned in the course to start her own nanotechnology company. Rewind back to the year 2010, when Glangchai started teaching an entrepreneurship class at Trinity University. Her goal: to help students transform the ideas they had brainstormed in class into viable business models. She soon realized, however, that it was difficult to get young women to sign up for her course. Suspecting long-held gender biases may have been holding her students back, she set out to educate her own children in developing an entrepreneurial mindset early on. Soon enough, her daughters’ and sons’ teachers were commenting on their confidence and creativity, and asking Glangchai where they got it from. This experience helped Glangchai develop her curriculum and business plan for VentureLab, a vehicle, she conspired, to get more kids thinking in an entrepreneurial way. Here, Glangchai shares her easy-to-approach steps on how to help kids transform a daydream into a real, viable business model— all while boosting their confidence and making a little side money. Glangchai says it’s important to encourage kids to use their already active imaginations to come up with new ideas and then discover for themselves whether they are viable. “A lot of times, at school and even at home, kids are told no or they’re told, ‘That’s a crazy idea. That’s a silly idea.’ But you really want them to pursue that idea and [have them] find out for themselves if it’s going to work or not work.” 2. PERFORM OPPORTUNITY ANALYSIS.

Once a child determines that his or her idea could come to fruition, Glangchai says to 26 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Photo by Sarah Brooke Lyons.


guide them through a discussion of the logistics of turning it into a business. Ask them if this is something people will need or want. Is it something they already have? “How can they determine if this is really an opportunity, if it’s an opportunity for them to start a company or create a product and to really pursue their idea?” 3. CONDUCT MARKET RESEARCH.

Glangchai says once a child has confidence in the viability of his or her business idea, it’s time to gauge others’ interest in it. Becoming outgoing enough to ask many people about the idea will serve a child well later on. “They can go to the classroom next door and interview other students or peers about their idea, or maybe they can go around the neighborhood with their parent to ask, ‘Hey, what do you think about this product?’ ” 4. PROTOTYPE AND DESIGN IT.

As excitement for the product builds, encourage your child to show his or her creative side and have fun designing it. “Starting with paper prototypes, just draw your idea out on a piece of paper. From there, you can build it out of cardboard. If you have a 3-D printer, you can actually take it from the cardboard 3-D model to a 3-D printed model.” 5. FORM A BUSINESS MODEL.

Now that the product is developed, help your child think practically about what it would take to actually make and sell it. “Who are your customers? Who is going to buy this? Who is going to want this? How much are they going to want to pay for it? Have kids think about how much…it actually [costs] to make this.” 6. PITCH AND MARKET THE IDEA.

Finally, find ways for your child to promote his or her product. They can make signs advertising it or even start a website. The e-commerce site shopify.com allows anyone to create an online store. This means kids can start there for fun and eventually pitch to retailers if the idea takes off. Ultimately, Glangchai says her goal with VentureLab isn’t to create an army of little business tycoons, but rather to help kids develop a mindset that’s useful in any endeavor. “I really think entrepreneurship happens in many contexts,” Glangchai says. “If you’re going to be an artist, you have to know how to market your art or have your own studio. If you’re a teacher, you have to be resourceful. If you’re a doctor and you want to start your own practice, or even if you’re a musician, [you need to] know how to market your music.”





We listen in on a candid conversation with some of Austin’s youngest radio hosts. BY ALESSANDRA REY, PHOTO BY KEVIN GARNER The oldest show on Austin’s KOOP Radio is also, coincidentally, the one staffed by the station’s youngest members. Youth Spin, on air since 1996, is a high-school-student-run radio program that offers young women and men a place to speak their mind, share their interests and comment on the world. Miranda Flores, Raaya Alim, Maddie Cole, Apol Ferrante, Sammi Fahnestock and Ray Wichterich are the females behind the show.

Tune in to 91.7 FM Fridays from 6 to 7 p.m., or stream the show online at koop.org, and you’ll hear the group interview bands and authors, or discuss current events and music, adding their personal commentaries along the way. We asked the young women behind Youth Spin what they’ve learned from hosting the program so far and how they think those lessons will help them later in life.

THEIR NOTES Miranda Flores: “I learned how to mess up. The first time [I was on air,] I freaked out. It was a hard and weird experience, and it made me more aware. But I think it’ll be helpful in life to know how to mess up.”

Raaya Alim: “It just helped me figure out who I was as a person. I got to get over my fear of speaking in public. Sometimes I still stutter, but then I realized that no one cares about that. Being able to speak is important because it has made me a better person.”

Ray Wichterich: “I’ve learned that there will always be a community that accepts you as you grow and change. Everyone here is connected in some way, whether it’s a passion for music or just being around people.”

Maddie Cole: “I’m autistic and that led to me being picked on a lot in middle school. But at Youth Spin, I’ve learned that I can actually do things. I can make contributions and share my writing. I used to feel like I couldn’t help out, but now I have a lot to say.”

Sammi Fahnestock: “This is my first year in Youth Spin. I’ve learned in my brief time here that it gives me a time to speak about my interests. For the longest time, I just couldn’t speak to people, but I learned how to bring up my hobbies.”

Apol Ferrante: “I feel like I lose interest in things quickly. But I know that I always want to do something that gets my thoughts and my feelings out there. Youth Spin helps you express who you actually are and say anything, you know, besides the things you can’t legally say on the radio.”

(From left to right) Raaya Alim, Maddie Cole, Sammi Fahnestock, Ray Wichterich and Miranda Flores. Not pictured: Apol Ferrante

28 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017











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Ashley Moyer turned her love for teaching and education into a full-time job, but not in the way she originally expected. BY ALESSANDRA REY

This year, Moyer is celebrating her third year as the executive director of the Hispanic Scholarship Consortium, a nonprofit organization focused on investing in students as they navigate college and continue to establish themselves in the professional world. In essence, Moyer’s work has come full circle, as the purpose of the HSC is to help students achieve dreams of their own. “More than a scholarship program, we try to work with our students throughout their college careers. The majority of the scholarships that are offered on our website are renewable,” Moyer says, noting that the average scholarship awarded is $2,000 and can be renewed for as long as four years, making it an $8,000 scholarship in total. “Most of the time, we are with these students until they graduate college and beyond that.” Upon completing her studies in Fort Worth, Texas, Moyer embarked on a six-month job search in the surrounding Dallas area. With her focus aimed on working in the education and nonprofit fields, 30 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Photo by Angel E. Houston.

When Ashley Moyer was 7 years old, she dreamed of becoming a teacher. Although she started as an education major at Texas Christian University, the now 29-year-old made the switch to communication studies and found her interest in the nonprofit sector. Little did she know her love for education would stay with her.

she eventually accepted a position as an AmeriCorps-VISTA with Big Brothers Big Sisters. After moving to Austin a few years later, Moyer found a job in just two weeks. Prior to her current position as executive director of the HSC, Moyer worked at San Juan Diego Catholic High School in Austin, as well as in admissions at Concordia University Texas, where she continued to follow her passion of supporting students. Since the consortium was founded in 2004, HSC has awarded nearly $2 million in scholarships to Hispanic students—the majority of whom are concentrated in Central Texas, and often come from lowincome households from which they are the first in their family to attend college. Moyer is the HSC’s only fulltime employee, but she is not alone in her efforts. Sponsors such as the Hispanic Physicians Association help make each scholarship possible. “It is so great to be able to reach out to our sponsors for the students,” Moyer says. “It’s those sponsors that are so supportive. They really want to see the students succeed by giving them all the resources they might need.” In order to connect scholarship recipients with working professionals in a variety of fields, HSC also hosts two leadership-development conferences each year. Moyer explains one of the largest obstacles eligible students face is the lack of networking opportunities with both young professionals and university students, something the leadership-development conferences address. “This year, 86 percent of our recipients are the first in their families

to go to college,” Moyer says. “We try to get them caught up on what we call ‘social capital’ by reaching out to professionals in their field of interest.” For the students, receiving a scholarship award from the HSC is a point of entry into a larger community. More than simply offering an exchange of funds, the consortium focuses on building relationships that last long after the students have graduated from college. “When I started at HSC, we had just started a partnership with Austin ISD,” Moyer says. “We replicated the conferences we put on for our [college] students and brought it to the high-school level.” At the end of the program, the high-school students were able to provide personal feedback to Moyer and her team. One student, in particular, Moyer remembers, stood out. “One student said their favorite part of their day was that they got to talk to an actual college student. The word ‘actual’ stands out to me. [It was] as if, for them, the idea of even getting a chance to talk to someone in college was farfetched,” she says. Since Moyer joined the HSC in 2014, the nonprofit has awarded more than 162 renewable scholarships. She may not have pursued her childhood dream of instructing a classroom, but her impact in education is an accomplishment that surpasses her biggest dreams. “If I could time travel, I could touch base with 7-year-old Ashley and she would be happy with what I’m doing now,” Moyer says. “I think she’d be happy to see that I am still supporting education and students in some capacity.”

[It was] as if, for them, the idea “ of even getting a chance to talk to someone in college was farfetched. ”


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Young filmmakers Selen Flores and Hannah Smith go behind the scenes of their first post-graduation film, Margot. In 2012, Selen Flores, a junior in college studying abroad in Prague at the time, was awakened by the sound of teenagers yelling, frantically shouting in search of their lost friend, Margot. Flores could tell they, like she and her friends, were American tourists experiencing all the wonders, trials and debaucheries of studying abroad. That memory would stay with the young University of Texas film student through her college career and eventually become the launching pad for her first post-graduation film.

Filmmakers Selen Flores and Hannah Smith

“When you’re a student and you’re 20 or 22, all of your inhibitions are lost and you feel invincible,” Flores says. “I put myself in [Margot’s] shoes and thought, ‘This could have easily been me.’ ” In 2015, two years after Flores graduated, she moved to Paris with dreams of making international films, but she could never let the idea of Margot go. While on a trip back to visit her family in Austin, she stayed with one of her college friends, Hannah Smith. Flores proposed Smith join her in Paris and make the film Margot with her. “For that moment, I said, ‘OK, we are officially going to make Margot,’ ” Flores recalls. A week after the women agreed to their plan, Smith booked a flight to France. “We basically put all of our bets on our Kickstarter,” Flores says of how the duo set out to get initial funding for the film. They began casting for the movie as soon as their Kickstarter campaign launched in August. They raised a little more than $7,000 and began filming in October. Most of their casting, producing and filming took place during the course of just a few short weeks. When the project turned out to cost more than they had budgeted, the duo used

32 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

personal savings and income from part-time jobs to make ends meet. Flores was a freelance cinematographer working part time at a bar, and Smith turned to her savings and paid out of pocket to live in Paris for two months. “I think it’s part of starting out in any creative-arts field,” Smith says, reflectively. “When you first start out, no one really wants to pay you to make your own stuff.” Flores and Smith were also not able to pay the staff as much as they wanted. “[Filmmakers] know it’s a hard industry to be in, but when people are that generous [with their time], it just shows how much they care,” Flores says. Another issue the women dealt with on a daily basis was their own perception and feelings toward their filmmaking, internal questioning and moments of self-doubt that stemmed from their acknowledgment that they were stepping into what is still today a very male-dominated industry. “You don’t always feel like you have ‘it.’ You don’t always feel like you are capable,” Flores says. “That is a big challenge for filmmakers and I think even more so for women filmmakers. I think we just feel like we are immersed in this male-dominated industry. And that’s changing, but at the same time, it can be such a challenge when sometimes you doubt yourself.” Smith adds that while she’s never personally faced sexism, she’s seen it firsthand through her work in casting and is aware it exists in the industry. “There needs to be a conversation about the gender barriers that exist for creating art,” Smith says. “I think we have to tell each other this and other future filmmakers that you are good enough, that you have to keep going,” Flores expounds, adding, “You don’t get to be an amazing filmmaker if you stop.” Smith believes more diversity behind and in front of the camera will have a positive effect on society. “Media informs culture, so when you only have a certain type of people making media, that can be dangerous,” Smith says. “If you don’t ever see someone you relate to—or someone you don’t relate to— onscreen, then you’re just going to be stuck in your own perspective.” Although the duo faced their own hurdles in making Margot a reality, they say the biggest rewards were getting to make a film—period—and build relationships and support systems within the film community. “My reward, first and foremost, is the relationships I make being a filmmaker,” Flores says. “The product or the media you make is part of it, but part of what keeps me coming back is the relationships I make on set.” Smith and Flores, both 26, are currently working on the musical score for Margot. Soon, they’ve agreed, they will start entering the film in festivals throughout the U.S. and abroad.

Photo courtesy of Selen Flores.



Two college students, Angela Jin and Nishiki Maredia, channeled their love for boy band One Direction into a social-justice movement. BY KAT SAMPSON “People want to be able to wear what they’re tweeting,” she explains. To no surprise, she says, the same group of teens that seeks stylish One Direction merchandise is also incredibly passionate about race, gender and religious equality. Today, 100 percent of profits from 1950 Collective’s new social-justice line go directly to a number of causes, including Black Lives Matter and the National Center for Transgender Equality. “Both of us are super involved in social justice and we thought, ‘If we have this platform and all these women follow us, we should be putting that to good use,’ ” Maredia “We…hatched this plot to says. sneak backstage,” Maredia The plan worked out. In the says. “We hung out almost young company’s brief twoevery day that summer and and-a-half-year existence, it plotted. It truly bonded us has grossed almost $300,000. in a way that doesn’t always Most recently, Jin and Maredia happen.” were recognized as two of Fast-forward four months, Glamour’s 2017 College Women after Maredia and Jin spent of the Year. their fall semester struggling Although profits are imthrough bouts of anxiety portant, Jin says the team and depression, and the two gets most excited about the landed back in their shared company’s 65,000 (and growhometown of Austin during ing) Instagram and Twitter winter break. They started to followers. The company’s hatch their second greatest social-media platforms, the duo plan. Why not channel their confides, are what keep them love for One Direction and close to their customers. their desire for a personal Jin remembers the first time cause into a T-shirt business? Today, their brainchild the two received an email from has morphed into internaa customer who was struggling tional apparel brand 1950 with depression and asking for Collective, an online store help. They sent an email back specializing in producing reminding her that although part fandom, part socialthey weren’t medical profesjustice-movement minimalsionals, they encouraged her to ist clothing. seek support from family and “It was something we friends. Six months later, the Entrepreneurs Angela Jin and Nishiki Maredia could do and see direct girl reached back out, saying results. It really helped our she’d followed their advice, mental health,” Maredia says of their business. “I would call [Angela started therapy and was on a positive road to recovery. for] hours a day. That’s social interaction you don’t get when you’re go“It was just such a moment that our impact of sharing our stories and ing through a depression.” getting out there—and being a channel for mental health—has long-lastThe bottom line was, Jin says, the two wanted to beat the One ing implications for mental health,” Jin says. “That was one of the most Direction merchandise team at their own game by releasing up-to-date special interactions I think about, in terms of what this company does.” T-shirts that fans could feel just as comfortable wearing at home as Despite the 1,950 miles between the two (Yes, the same number in they do to class or on a hike, specifics they noticed the One Direction their company’s name.), their mutual support for each other endures. team didn’t execute so well. The two say they have no intentions of shutting down 1950 CollecOne of 1950 Collective’s first great successes was a shirt featuring the tive when Jin graduates and moves to Los Angeles to work in the music phrase “Girl Almighty,” a One Direction lyric that Maredia says was not industry. (Her goal is to increase Asian-American musical represenonly a fan favorite, but was also perfectly feminist. tation.) Maredia says they’re open to change and Jin confirms that Today, Jin and Maredia maintain their feminist and inclusive lifestyle regardless of what the future holds, the two will continue to fight for brand by selling shirts in sizes as large as 4XL and printing phrases like equality. “Favorite Position: CEO” and “No Ban No Wall” on their products. “I will always consider [1950 Collective] a small business,” Jin says. The team’s move toward social-justice-focused clothing happened “We’ll never have a corporate feel and I like to think we’ll always fight organically, Maredia says, with the designs often originating from for the underdog and it’ll just keep pushing us forward.” conversations people have online.

Photo courtesy of 1950 Collective.

Angela Jin and Nishiki Maredia’s big idea started where many great ideas do: at a One Direction concert. It was the summer of 2014. Jin, 21, a business marketing major, was about to start her sophomore year at Boston College, and Maredia, 20, was about to begin her first semester at the University of Texas. Their friendship was strengthened that summer when the two conspired to sneak backstage at a One Direction concert.





15 2017

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Rising Cuban artist Dayme Arocena follows her rhythm in the city of eternal summer.

Photo by Kelly DiNardo.






It’s not often a 24-year-old earns comparisons to musical legends Aretha Franklin, Nina Simone and Celia Cruz, but critics and fans are continuing to heap just such enthusiastic praise on Dayme Arocena. The Cuba-born artist’s debut album, Nueve Era, showcased her musical mashup of jazz, salsa, soul, pop, hip-hop and Afro-Cuban chants and rhythms and was released to critical acclaim. Cubafonia, her second album, released in March, is an homage to Cuban music and culture, something Arocena thinks has been forgotten in the decades of political turmoil.

I would describe Havana as… “Authentic, unique, hot, spicy, happy, humble, rich, sublime and sexy. Havana is so sexy. Havana is a city where you can feel at home. We are always up to help people. We always have something to show, to discover, to open. We have this beautiful weather. We have really interesting people. We are mixing our roots. The weather, the beach, the people—we have this beautiful combination in Cuba. That’s what makes it sexy.”

Cuba remains a poor country, but it’s also culturally rich, alive and vibrant. Music permeates the streets of Havana and, when she’s not on tour, Arocena can most likely be found listening or dancing to timba, rumba, jazz and reggaeton. It doesn’t matter what time of year one visits Cuba, she says, because “Cuba is eternal summer.” Here’s a look at where this rising music legend goes to experience the best of Havana’s vibrant and thriving cultural scene.

The Havana music scene is special because… “This is a country that learned how to survive under all different circumstances. We had to learn to make it work, so there is no fear in Cuba. There is no fear about life. You feel that in the music. Musicians right now are trying to mix everything we’re hearing—from the U.S. to Brazil—and mix it with our Cuban roots. We are always creating. There’s always an opportunity to hear. There is always a place to listen to live music.”

Dance is a big part of the Cuban music scene. For dancing, check out… “Casa de la Musica de Miramar. I like to dance timba. For flamenco or tango, there is a place in Centro Habana called El Tablao that I want to go to, but I haven’t been yet.”

The best place to hear up-and-coming artists in Havana is… “F.A.C., the Fábrica de Arte Cubano. If you want to go to see what’s new in Havana, this is where to go.”

36 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

“Start with a walk through Old Havana and along the Malecón. Go to the beach. Santa María del Mar and Mar Azul are really nice and close to the city. At night, go dancing. If you want to dance timba, there’s Casa de la Musica. There’s one in Miramar and one in Central Havana. They always have timba and salsa bands. [Or visit] Egrem studios. It’s touristic but fun. They have a nightclub and you can dance [to] traditional music and rumba. Or get out of Havana for a day and go to the countryside. Las Terrazas is an ecovillage and there’s a nice art community. Viñales is a rural town known for its tobacco farms. Or [check out] Trinidad, Varadero, Santiago, Baracoa and Jardines de la Reina.”

Photos by Kelly DiNardo. Dayme Arocena photo courtesy of Dayme Arocena.

Dayme Arocena

My ideal itinerary for a first-time visitor to Havana would look like…

My favorite place to go listen to live music is…

“In the Vedado neighborhood. I love Casa de la Musica de Miramar and Corner Café. I really like to watch concerts at Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. With the clubs, it really depends on who is playing. In Cuba, we don’t follow places; we follow musicians. I look to see where this guy or that girl is playing.”

My favorite activity to do with friends and visitors is… “I really like to take people to walk around Habana Vieja. It’s so touristic, but I feel like we’re walking through the history of my country.”

My favorite restaurants are… “Porto Habana. It’s on the 11th floor of an apartment building and has beautiful views. I also like Pp’s Teppanyaki, which has Japanese food, and La Guarida, which is a famous Cuban paladar, and Lamparilla, which is tapas.”

The best place to hear street musicians is… “Habana Vieja, especially Callejón del Chorro and Calle Obispo. Every Sunday on Callejon de Hamel, they play rumba in the street. There are drum circles, dancing and costumes. It goes on for hours.”

The Cuban artist I’m listening to now is… “Havana D’Primera and Alain Pérez. He blends jazz with Cuban timba and some other influences.”

Visitors to Havana will be surprised that… “It’s alive. Havana is a really old city. Things are really old. People keep the cars and the houses as they are. We don’t have anything else. We stretch the lifetime of things. It is still beautiful, still alive. I think that’s a nice lesson of life. Sometimes people kill the beauty of a city, making new buildings and new cars. Sometimes they are making life complicated. I got this car, but I want a new one. In Cuba, life is more chill. Life is more simple. When people come to Cuba, they are surprised at how people are still smiling and still happy even though we have oldfashioned houses and cars and a poor economy. Life is so much easier. Life is beautiful.”

Don’t leave Havana without picking up a souvenir of…

Photos by Kelly DiNardo.

“Claves [a percussion instrument] to make Cuban rhythms.”






Rejuvenate your reading list with these young-adult novels. BY APRIL CUMMING Meghan Dietsche Goel lives in a world surrounded by books. As the program director for the Texas Teen Book Festival and the children’s-book buyer and programming director for BookPeople, Goel has what many literary lovers would consider a dream job. The 2017 Texas Teen Book Festival, now in its ninth year, is set to take place from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Oct. 7 at St. Edward’s University.

The festival’s lineup of keynote speakers includes New York Times bestselling authors Marie Lu and Jason Reynolds. Actress Mayim Bialik from the popular TV series The Big Bang Theory will also attend as the opening speaker. With four months of anticipation until the festival, Goel shares her five favorite reading recommendations for teens (and teens at heart) to check out now.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon “Dimple’s dreams include computer-coding camp, Stanford and designing her own app. They do not involve looking for an ideal Indian husband. Her parents’ diabolical plan to set her up with a suitor at coding camp catches her by surprise. And, most infuriatingly, Dimple likes charming, earnest Rishi, in spite of herself. Terrific characters, easy banter and nuanced explorations of family, love, culture and identity make this romance a satisfying and highly entertaining beach read.”

Thick as Thieves by Megan Whalen Turner “Fans of YA fantasy can’t do any better than The Queen’s Thief series for exhilarating quests and bold intrigue. Seven years after her last volume, Megan Whalen Turner returns with an epic companion novel in which a Medean slave must abandon the life he knows and flee towards a future he never imagined. This hotly anticipated read offers one man’s riveting and achingly human journey of survival and independence in a dangerous, shifting world—a world readers have eagerly been waiting to revisit.”

38 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge “In a world where blank faces offer no glimpses into the soul, the power of expression is dearly bought. For a price, Facesmiths will craft your appearance to reveal, obfuscate or even fabricate your truth. In that realm, a young girl with a face of unfiltered feeling—but no memories— represents a danger sharper than any poison. A master of rich language and ambitious world-building, Frances Hardinge is one of the most talented YA authors out there. And this evocative, mysterious fantasy is one of her most interesting yet.”

“[This book was] inspired by the real-life journals of a young 18th century Scottish aristocrat, [and] Mackenzi Lee paints a portrait of a similarly selfish, cocky, dramatic, impetuous, pseudo-intellectual young man. On a glorious and vice-filled grand tour of Europe, irrepressibly disreputable Henry Montague seeks fun, adventure and revelry with his best friend (and forbidden crush), Percy. Snappy, irreverent wit and smoldering star-crossed romance make this an intoxicating, memorable ride.”

The Lines We Cross by Randa Abdel-Fattah “Afghan immigrant Mina misses her home and her father, but she and her mom are leaving their pasts behind and moving across Sydney to fulfill Mina’s scholarship to an elite school. Until Mina arrived, Michael never questioned his parents’ anti-immigrant activism. But once she’s there, he can’t see the world the same way he did before. First published in Australia, this is an appealing and truly thoughtful portrayal of two teens confronting confusing conflicts of politics and bias with complexity, empathy and love.”

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The University of Texas' fashion seniors show glimpses of their final collections.

The designer: Rachel Spross Her inspiration: “I was inspired by the 1950s and all things romantic. I also drew inspiration from the floral lace fabric that I appliquéd on each piece in this collection. I want women wearing any of my collection pieces to feel like a princess living in her own fairy tale.” Her post-grad plans: “I have my own fashion and lifestyle blog, The Trendy Tomboy, that I will be taking full time after graduation. I also recently started my own socialmedia consulting firm and have plans to begin making YouTube videos.”

40 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

The designer: Van Anh Le Her inspiration: “My inspiration came from Spain and the elaborate outfits of the toreros and matadors while they are bull fighting. The beauty of the culture and the people made such an impression on me, and I knew I wanted to incorporate some of my past experiences into an important project like the evening-wear gown. I want women to feel sophisticated and elegant in [this] gown that exudes a graceful sense of luxury.” Her post-grad plans: “My main goal after graduating is to find a job! As of right now, I am also hoping to apply to medical school within the next year and a half. With both backgrounds, I want to be able to combine both of my interests and be involved with textile applications in the medical industry.”


The designer: Hailey Sellars Her inspiration: “My collection is inspired by repetitive geometrical patterns and folds in nature, like on a palm leaf. I wanted to take very simple silhouettes and incorporate the pleats to create different movements for the garments. The [bridal] look is mostly inspired by modern architecture. I wanted to create [something] sleek and modern for the nontraditional bride. I also wanted to incorporate an element of something historical to add some contrast to the nontraditional jumpsuit and skirt look, so I created my own interpretation of the ruff-neck pieces worn in the Elizabethan era. With any piece I make, I want the woman who wears it to feel powerful and confident, like she's ready to take on anything that comes her way.” Her post-grad plans: “After graduation, I’m off to New York to intern at a small company called Rhié for the summer. After that, I’m not sure where I’ll be, but I’m open to all of the possibilities.” 42 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017



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Eclecticism is on display inside interior designer Jennifer Fisher’s entertainment area. BY APRIL CUMMING

“It’s a carefully curated, eclectic mix of vintage and modern furnishings, accessories with bold patterns and bright pops of color,” Fisher says, adding that the best compliment she’s ever received on her unique living space is, “Wow! It looks like an interior designer lives here!” Fisher’s treasured, relaxing space serves as a testament to the fact that looking good and costing a fortune don’t necessarily need to go hand in hand, a point she maps out here in her blueprint for replicating her favorite room.

IN THIS ROOM r Nathan Anthony Genoa midsize sleeper sofa

r vintage James Mont wicker-back chairs

r Blu Dot Cub coffee table

r replica Jean Prouvé Antony wooden lounge chairs from France & Son

r vintage couch-side coffee table

r Blu Dot Dang two-door/two-drawer console credenza

r brass peace sign and Tom Ford book from Prize

r Ikea Vittsjö shelves

r gold magazine-and-newspaper rack from urbanoutfitters.com

r r ug from overstock.com

r record player from Breakaway Records

rv  intage walnut lamp

r copper lamp from Blu Dot

rG  reta Grossman Grasshopper floor lamp

44 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Photo by by Tim Williams.

Where does an interior designer retreat after long days spent consulting on and reimagining the room décor in clients’ homes? For Jennifer Fisher, owner of J.Fisher Interiors, the answer is her East Austin living room, a welcoming space she’s molded into a real-life reflection of everything she loves.

“” I believe that every living room should have the ability to seat eight people for conversation. I think it’s a bit tacky when the entire room is oriented to watch television, so finding chairs that would serve a dual purpose without obstructing the TV when it’s in use was particularly important. I also wanted a beautiful way to display my collections of brass elephants and snow globes that didn’t come with a big price tag, so I painted the frame on the metal shelves a shimmery gold since they only came in an uninspiring brown color or black. I always like white walls because I selectively incorporate bold colors through all my designs, especially my power color, turquoise. —Jennifer Fisher

GET THE LOOK USE NEUTRAL COLORS FOR FURNISHINGS “I used a gray sofa and wood chairs.” PICK BOLD COLORS TO ACCESSORIZE “Add bright pillows, art and large coffee-table books. I selected a bright hot-pink orchid to set atop my favorite Tom Ford book, turquoise pillows and a colorful vintage poster.” SHOP THRIFT STORES “…Or Craigslist and estate sales to find unique, low-cost pieces. I found the pair of chairs with the pillows on them at the Salvation Army for $16. They were a steal, and since [the Salvation Army] had no idea what they had, I really made out because they are worth about 180 times that!” USE A BOLD PATTERNED RUG “I used a black-and-white striped rug, which is actually neutral, but because of the pattern and the contrasting colors, it reads as super bold.”

Photos by Kerri Lohmeier and Tim Williams.

INCORPORATE REPURPOSED PIECES “The blue ‘E’ sign came from Ellis Brooks Chevrolet that was on Van Ness [Avenue] in San Francisco. They were on a flatbed truck and were being thrown out. I asked to take one and they agreed to let me have it. [Today,] I use the ‘E’ sign letter as a table for my lamp. The top is all bent and not strong, so I had a piece of glass cut for the top and now I have an interesting conversationpiece table.”



LadyFi Photography

Corey Mendez Photography


Amanda Hoffman Art LadyFi Photography

Danielle Chloe Photography

LadyFi Photography

Danielle Chloe Photography


















Stephanie Scherzer

Jill Burns and Kelly Gasink

Kerri Swope

Patricia Buchholtz









Annie Liao Jones


Nelly Garcia









Carol de Cardenas

Margaret Jabour

Kimberlee Sullivan

Cindy Lo


a Chord Rising phenom and classical pianist turned blues guitarist Jackie Venson discusses the journey behind establishing her music’s genre-crossing message.


Jackie Venson is a people person. As a performer and songwriter, the 27-year-old is fascinated by what makes people tick. Her latest obsession: observing other people’s expressions and choosing her words— carefully—to formulate the perfect question. “I definitely love to study people,” Venson says. “My biggest thing lately is learning to ask the right question. A lot of people will tell you a lot more than they probably intended to depending on what you ask them.” Venson’s ability to connect with listeners through her smoldering vocals and expressive, blues-inspired guitar playing has earned her a spot as a rising star in the Austin music scene. Venson recently wrapped her last day in the recording studio, where she was working on a new EP before heading off on tour. The upcoming release, to be titled Transcends, falls in line with a variety of new developments and happenings in the musician’s life. The EP marks Venson’s first experience recording with local producer Michael Ramos, who has worked with the likes of John Mellencamp and Paul Simon. Venson also recently began working with a manager after years of representing herself. On the heels of all this growth, all these fresh and new experiences, Venson says this recording has been her most successful to date. A die-hard performer, Venson struggled in previous album recordings to fit her music into the structured studio space. “Everyone does this career for a different reason,” Venson shares, taking a sip from her cup of coffee. “Some people don’t like to perform; some people just want to write. I am obsessed with performing. All I want to do is perform all the time. Everything else I do is just to get me opportunities to perform.” Her devotion to the energy and spontaneity of live shows led her to release a live album in the fall of 2016, recorded at now closed South Austin café Strange Brew. Venson’s cheery, playful stage presence comes through on the live release. At the start of the reggae-infused track Lost in Time, Venson can be heard warning the audience, “It looks like this show’s going to be a sexy show, so you’re just going to have to deal with it.” Her soulful laughter chimes in throughout the energetic album, matching up with her wide grin, ever present in person and on her album covers. The accompanying visuals align with her music’s optimistic message. “In my music, I like to err on the side of positivity because I believe in manifestation and direction of energy. I feel like if I direct good energy into music, it comes back to me,” Venson says. “Even when crappy things happen, I’ve got a lot of good energy surrounding me, so I feel like I can just roll with the punches.” Venson’s simple lyrics transmit a message about the importance of freedom and compassion directly to listeners.

Her bluesy guitar licks provide the kick to her uplifting ideals. “I’ve decided I’m definitely going to stick with this message because it seems to work,” Venson says of her music’s inspirational themes. “All my heroes had a message and they stuck with it forever.” Referring to her penchant for studying human nature, Venson jokingly warns of the dangers of using “social engineering” to understand and potentially manipulate people. Venson assures that she plans to use her insight for good. “You can use it to get where you want. I want to use it to get to a certain platform because I want to spread a message, and I think this message is positive,” Venson says. “There’s a lot of people on this earth. You have to separate yourself from other people, which is very difficult.” Venson’s hybrid sound certainly stands on its own, pulling from rock, blues and soul, with interspersed moments of jazz, reggae and hip-hop. “I like playing all types of American music, not just one genre,” Venson says. “Just blues gets really boring. It’s the same chord progressions.” Venson’s musical roots start with her father, Andrew Venson, who’s well-known for working as a professional musician in Austin for more than 40 years. He provided bass for the blues group Blue Mist and later fronted his own soul project, Seeds of Fulfillment. Venson’s earliest memories of music include hearing her dad’s band rehearse in their at-home practice space. As the youngest of nine siblings, Venson was often toted along to her dad’s gigs when the other kids were old enough to watch themselves. At 8 years old, Venson began her serious venture into the world of classical piano. She never held any doubts that music would be her career and lifelong pursuit. With plans of becoming a singer-songwriter, Venson started taking voice lessons during high school. By the age of 16, Venson was performing 14-minute-long advanced Chopin piano compositions. She notes that she stuck with the same private piano teacher for more than a decade because he made her learn only songs she liked. Venson credits her first voice and piano teachers for really teaching her how to work at being a musician. “It’s like they got inside my head and spoke my brain language,” Venson says of her instructors. “They made me understand the paths that I needed to take to learn how to do the things I needed to be able to do.”


With all of her focus dedicated to music, Venson says she barely made it through high school. She remembers staying up all night practicing piano, not starting her homework until the bus ride to school the next morning. Venson scraped by on just-passing grades and graduated with a 2.1 GPA. She had no plans to pursue higher education until she heard about music-focused colleges. “When I found out that music colleges existed, I applied to all of them,” Venson recalls. “I only got into one because my GPA was terrible.” While studying composition and studio production at Boston’s Berklee College of Music, Venson lost some of her energy for classical piano. She says the songs she wrote on piano sounded too much like musical theater songs. “I didn’t have enough passion for it. I didn’t like what I wrote on the piano, and that kind of took me away from the piano as well,” Venson says. “I was kind of getting over classical music and I wanted to move on to something else, but I couldn’t figure out something else on the piano that I wanted to do.” In search of a new direction, Venson looked back toward home, and to the blues music she grew up around. “Austin is my home genre,” Venson says. “I branched out from blues, but it starts with blues. I think a lot of that has to do with growing up in Austin and going to shows in Austin.” Venson says her hometown’s six-string-centric, rock-’n’-roll reputation also decided her next instrumental venture: the electric guitar. During her final semester of college, Venson launched into her intensive blues-guitar education. She bought a book covering guitar basics, learned the entire thing front to back and began practicing for as long as six hours a day. A huge part of developing her early guitar understanding came by listening. “I would turn the guitar off and I would press play on the iPod,” Venson says, reflecting. “That was my life for, like, three years—thousands of hours of blues-guitar listening.” Venson studied the guitar tone of blues legends Buddy Guy, George Benson and B.B. King. For vocal inspiration, Venson turned to the sounds of Amy Winehouse, Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder. “It’s like learning how to speak a language,” Venson says of her somewhat new musical venture. “If you don’t know what the words

sound like, how are you going to learn how to pronounce them?” In her early days of wrestling with blues guitar, Venson says her past mastery of classical piano helped her push through the learning curve. She recalls being frustrated with a certain guitar technique and giving herself pep talks. “I’d be like, ‘Hey, remember that one Chopin song you tried to learn? That took you, like, three years.’ And then I’d go back to practicing,” Venson says. After graduating from Berklee, Venson returned home and began taking private blues-guitar lessons. Back in Austin, Venson faced the challenge of being one musician in thousands trying to make it in the music capital. In her usual optimistic attitude, Venson says she embraced the difficulty after years of structured piano performances. “I actually prefer to be a small fish in a really, really big pond,” Venson says. “I don’t ever want to see the whole pond. I want to die and still have more pond to explore. That way, life never gets boring.” Before becoming a full-time musician in 2014, Venson worked as a babysitter, sang in a wedding band and hosted karaoke nights. She remembers her first solo performance as a singer-songwriter at a bar on Sixth Street equipped with a mechanical bull. “Any night I wasn’t working, I turned it into work and went to an open-mic night. I didn’t know how else to get gigs,” Venson says. “I knew I didn’t sound very good, but I didn’t care. I knew if I kept on doing it, I would get better.” Starting out, Venson struggled through four-hour sets at corporate parties. She says the lengthy performances pushed her as a guitarist and helped her write enough original material to not have to repeat songs. As Venson began to build up her local following, the singersongwriter was eventually able to start performing with a backing band. “Once I started playing with a band, everything I had worked on alone in my house skyrocketed,” Venson says. “Seriously, for two years, I felt like I was running in place, but then, all of a sudden, it just took off.” Venson’s current band includes Rodney Hyder on drums and bassist Alán Uribe. The trio frequently performs at beloved Austin venues One-2-One Bar and Antone’s Nightclub.

“P e o p l e t r e at people t he w they treat themselves. ’ ay that It s hardly ever perso nal. When peo mean or neg ative toward p l e a r e you, they’re actually sho wing you a hu ge w on their par ’ t. It s just in eakness ’ formation. It s not som ething you should take t o heart a n d it ’s n o t s o m e t h in g t h at y o u s hould let s t o p y o u .”

HOW TO LEARN TO PLAY AN INSTRUMENT AS A BLUES-GUITAR CHAMP, JACKIE VENSON SHARES HER PRACTICAL TIPS FOR PICKING UP A NEW INSTRUMENT. Build from the basics. “Starting out, I bought a Hal Leonard basics-of-guitar book and I learned that whole book. I basically taught KERRY myself until I couldn’t teach myself anymore.”

Get a private teacher. “I always tell people [to] take private lessons. Don’t waste any time. These people already know what you need to do and they’re just going to hand you the information. My teachers taught me all this stuff I RUPP could have never taught myself because I didn’t know I needed to learn it.”

50 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Listen to artists you want to sound like. “I thought of myself as a baby. A baby just sits around for two years and makes noises and listens. That’s exactly what I did on the guitar. I made noises and then I’d just listen. How else are you supposed to figure out tone and what the guitar is supposed to sound like? Then, eventually, you shape your own voice from all the information you got from listening.”

Practice, practice, practice. “Learning is very hard. It takes a lot of patience. It felt like I was never going to be able to play the way I wanted to play. It felt like that for two years, but I knew I was going to get good at it if I just put the time in, no matter how bleak it looked.”

 tart before you’re S ready. “Just start. Don’t sit around thinking, ‘I’ll start when I’m a little better.’ You’re always going to need to get better. Just jump in and don’t care about what anybody else thinks.”

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“I ’m feeling p either way, ’ retty optimistic about I m playing w ’ music for a hat s coming next, bu t living and life’s good.”

52 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Venson says her dad is the ultimate source of wisdom on how to succeed as a bandleader and professional musician. His main advice has always been for her to distinguish herself from every other guitar player in the city and always bring something new to the table. “He always told me, ‘If you want to be the bandleader, own the PA and book the gigs.’ And it doesn’t hurt to have the rehearsal space in your house,” Venson says. “If you want to keep a band, make it so they need you. Make is so they have to hire you.” In her YouTube series, How to Become a Musician, Venson shares her father’s wise words and discusses the trade with other working artists. Her most recent episode features local hip-hop group Riders Against the Storm. In the video, captured by Venson’s selfie-stick style of filming, the group first meets up with Venson at East Austin venue Sahara Lounge before proceeding to walk down the street. The artists chat about Venson’s father and his one-liner advice to “treat the audience as if they were your family because they are.” Previous video guests on Venson’s YouTube series included Austin-based musicians Carolyn Wonderland, Dale Watson and Kate Priestley of the band KP and the Boom Boom. With years of touring and two full-length album releases behind her, Venson has curated some of her own advice for aspiring musicians. Tapping into her superpower ability to see the best in human nature, Venson says people who looked down on her throughout her career were only revealing their own flaws. “People treat people the way that they treat themselves. It’s hardly every personal. When people are mean or negative toward you, they’re actually showing you a huge weakness on their part,” Venson says. “It’s just information. It’s not something you should take to heart and it’s not something that you should let stop you.” Venson says being a female musician has taught her to stay true to her own goals and authentic self in the face of criticism. “Do exactly what you want to do,” Venson says. “Anything you need to do is what you want to do. Don’t worry about what you look like. All of that stuff comes naturally.” Venson caught a big break on tour last year in New York City. While performing at a coffee shop in Harlem, a friend of Stay Human, the house band for The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, took a cellphone video of Venson’s impressive guitar chops. The video made its way back to the band, which led to an Instagram message inviting Venson to fill in on guitar for a five-night run on the late-night talk show. Venson shared the stage with Stay Human bandleader Jon Batiste and visiting artists Mac Miller and Anderson Paak. “It was just complete luck that I checked my Instagram messages,” Venson says. “That was probably the biggest thing I’ve ever done.” Following her Late Show appearance last September, Venson started 2017 with local recognition from artist-championing organizations Black Fret and Austin Music Foundation. She is currently part of Austin Music Foundation’s artist-development program, alongside local artists to watch like Charlie Faye, Gina Chavez and Magna Carda. The intensive seven-month program supports a select group of established Austin musicians by providing information on more advanced topics, like getting press, copyrights and building a management team. Venson says the program gives artists the “next-level info” that record labels used to provide during her father’s time in the music industry. “We’ve gotten [the process of] booking gigs figured out, and now we’re trying to figure out this weird gray area that we’re not getting any help in because labels don’t do that anymore,” Venson says. “Now, you’ve got to already be opening for The Rolling Stones for [labels] to even care about you. It’s like, how do I get there? Austin Music Foundation is just an answer to that question.” Venson says Austin Music Foundation is extremely valuable to local artists of all levels. For musicians just starting out, it can help with the basics of booking gigs, getting paid and connecting an artist with other musicians. “I had my own Austin Music Foundation just because of my dad, but that’s why I say it’s so useful, because not everyone has my dad just sitting around,” Venson says. “Austin Music Foundation is my dad for everyone else: the trained, professional musician that shares experiences and gives you an opportunity to learn from them.” In March, Venson was included among a selection of local musicians receiving grants from Black Fret. The nonprofit allows nominated artists to “unlock” their grant funds through musical achievements, like releasing new material and touring. Venson says Austin’s support of local musicians is completely unique to the city. “I’ve been to a lot of other music cities and there’s just nothing like this. There’s nothing like Austin Music Foundation, and there’s nothing like Black Fret either,” she says. “Do you really think there’s something in New York City that’s going to give you a free consultation? Come on! Do you think there’s anything for free in New York City?” This month, Venson heads out on her third European tour. This will be her first time performing overseas with her full band, which she couldn’t afford to bring along to past performances in Europe.

JACKIE VENSON’S SUMMER JAMS To get in the summertime spirit, Austin Woman asked the blues powerhouse what songs she plans to have on repeat this month. Her genre-spanning playlist picks pair well with the singer-songwriter’s free spirit and varied musical influences. New Slang by The Shins “Roll the windows down and let the wind blow your hair as you cruise with your friends. This is that kind of song. I love the sing-along ‘oohs’ sprinkled throughout the song. They make me happy.” Mad Behaviour by Izzy Bizu “Summer is all about love, and this song is about love in its most accepting and wild form. [It says] he or she will love you, no matter your mad behavior.” SpottieOttieDopaliscious by Outkast “Now it’s time to kick back and reflect on how blessed we all are to be sharing the earth together at this time. Chill out and get lost in life for a second. This song will assist you with that, I’m sure of it.” Love and Happiness by Al Green “[This song is] classic, groovy and full of soul and meaning, just like Al Green always is. The depth in this song and the hypnotic ways of this band just make you want to cannonball into a body of water and kick it with your friends.” One Nation Under a Groove by Funkadelic “Togetherness: What’s life without the people you love? We are all in this together, and it sure is hard as hell to enjoy summer without friends and family all gettin’ down just for the funk of it.” Sweet Life by Frank Ocean “[This song is about] learning to live life from all angles and all experiences, whether you’re blessed with material riches or other types of riches. I love this song because it’s from a point of view that many of us don’t get to experience.” Monte by Zee Avi “Simplicity, that’s what I’m all about. Too much clutter or too much noise drowns out what’s really important: appreciating your life and the people you’ve been given to guide you through.”


For the remainder of 2017, Venson plans to continue touring and expanding her reach to audiences outside of Texas and hopes to potentially find a record label to release her upcoming EP, Transcends. “[The album cover will] read like, ‘Jackie Venson Transcends.’ People are going be like, ‘Transcends what?’ ” Venson says in her true-to-form lighthearted humor. “I’m going to be like, ‘I don’t know. Listen to the EP and find out. It’s a cliffhanger.’ ” The new EP will continue the young artist’s trademark mixing of genres, citing the sounds of Prince, Funkadelic and ’90s pop hits as inspiration. “It starts with pop and it kind of goes through rock and funk and soul,” Venson says, excitedly describing the upcoming release. “It’s like soul-rock-funk-pop. I can’t stick to one. I just can’t.” The EP will also explore the idea of platonic love, including self-love, friendships and family relationships. “It’s love in all other forms except for romantic love. No one ever sings about that,” she says. “It’s a really mysterious form of love, and it can be really confusing. There are some people where it’s just like, ‘We must have known each other in a past life or something.’ ” In addition to the new EP, Venson says she also has a full-length album written, waiting to be recorded. It comes as no surprise the devoted singer-songwriter likes working ahead of time on content. “I don’t want to be like, ‘Oh crap, this EP did really well and now they want a full album and I have nothing!’ ” Venson says. “You never know about the timing with stuff. For all I know, if I sleep on it a little bit, the window where it might do really well could mysteriously just fly away or close.” While navigating the mysterious timing of musical success and connections made, Venson seems to possess the perfect combination of devotion to her art and faith in her personal journey as a musician. “Some of that stuff, you can’t control, but damn it all if I don’t try,” Venson says. “I’m feeling pretty optimistic about what’s coming next, but either way, I’m playing music for a living and life’s good. If it doesn’t happen, I’ll try again next year.” Those sentiments are echoed on One Step Forward, a track from her most recent album, in which Venson makes a promise to listeners in her final lyric: I’ll keep playing till the sun goes down on my life.

54 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

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“I actually pr ef er t o b e a small fis h in a reall y, re a l ly big pond. I don ’ t e v e r wa n t to see the w h o l e p o nd . Iw and still ha ant to die v e m or e p on d to explore . T h a t way , life never gets boring .”


THE BUSINESS OF BLOGGING Three hustling bloggers and social-media mavens divulge the truth behind what it takes to be an influencer. BY SARAH E. ASHLOCK

Meet three of Texas’ most beloved bloggers: fashionable Dani Austin (@daniaustin), foodie Jane Ko (@atasteofkoko) and destination jet-setter Chelsea Martin (@passporttofriday). These three influencers recently gathered at Grizzelda’s— a little slice of the tropics on Tillery Street that’s fittingly been dubbed by some as East Austin’s most Instagram-worthy happy-hour hot spot—to divulge some secrets to their success. With a backdrop of banana-leaf wallpaper and blushcolored décor, they nursed frozen margaritas and slowly, sip by sip, revealed the behind-the-scenes work that goes into creating a digital lifestyle and the path they forged to create a career that, at least for the majority of young women, is seen as a modern-day success.

56 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017


Jane Ko photo by Inked Fingers Photography. Dani Austin photo courtesy of Dani Austin. Chelsea Martin photo courtesy of Chelsea Martin.




#letsgosomewhere Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat: These ladies work. This 20-something trio spends 40-plus hours a week hustling in order to maintain the appearance of an effortless digital presence. Always on the go, these ladies are constantly scouring the state of Texas and beyond for the next trendy destination, café or stylish ensemble. Before Martin was posting photos of her stay at a seven-star hotel in Dubai or of the sailboat she ventured out on in Croatia, she worked as an assistant wedding coordinator through college. One semester, Martin decided to study abroad. She caught the travel bug and, upon her return, asked her dean for advice on how to incorporate that passion into a career. Soon enough, Martin found herself intrepidly starting her freelance travel-advisor enterprise. “When I was 10 years old, I remember [my mother and I] were in Hawaii, sitting on floaties and talking about how we wanted to travel. Our dream would be a Travel Channel show,” Martin says. “It’s kind of fun to see these dreams [you had] when you were smaller come true.” Part of Martin’s success as a freelance travel advisor relies on sharing vibrant, dreamy photos on social media and her blog, all of which helps further establish her credibility as someone who knows what makes for a world-class vacation. Martin titled her blog Passport to Friday. “I started it mostly as a business-travel blog, just your passport to the best day of the week, to a better life,” Martin says, clarifying. “For me, it’s more [about] the people that I attract, people who are looking for a getaway that’s going to enhance their life.” Each influencer relies on speaking to the millennial generation, the population that makes up the majority of their audience. During the course of the last few years, an uptick in travel has been documented, in huge part because of 20and 30-somethings, with 72 percent of millennials choosing experiences over purchases, and 97 percent of millennial travelers posting on social media. “I think that’s what’s great about millennials too, is they’re into experiences,” Martin says. Instead of simply going to the one-size-fits-all honeymoon resort, millennials desire a one-of-a-kind travel experience.

#forkyeah Not only is #travel popular, but so are #foodie ’grams. That’s where Ko comes in. She has been blogging for the past seven years, cementing herself as one of Austin’s most established food bloggers. After earning a degree in nutrition with a minor in business from the University of Texas, Ko took a different approach than what one might have expected her to pursue with her degree. Her love of food and business-savvy steadfastness is what initially led her to launch A Taste of Koko. “I loved how [blogging is] predominantly a women industry,” Ko says. “I loved how these women were really inspiring and made something for themselves.” A Taste of Koko gives Ko’s readers insider details on Austin’s ever-changing and innovative food culture. Her 38,000 (and climbing) loyal followers on Instagram can’t get enough of her flat-lay photos, food photos shot from the top down. Ko identifies that technique as her signature style, noting it’s ideal for giving a full view of not only a dish, but also a restaurant’s 58 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

aesthetic. From duck confit and rosé at Toulouse Cafe and Bar to lemon ricotta pancakes at Josephine House, Ko has solidified herself as a food-photo-culture mainstay. “People, even friends, will always tell you what you can and can’t do. When I started my blog in 2010, my friends told me it was dumb. When I launched a food crawl at South By Southwest in 2014 and had over 10,000 people sign up in one week, local media friends told me to shut it down,” Ko confides. “Starting your own business, whether it’s small or big, is the most rewarding thing you can do for yourself. Listen to others, but do what you want to do. Be who you want to be.” This foodie’s influence stretches beyond Austin. Ko travels to cities throughout the world—from Taipei to New York City, from Miami to Mammoth Lakes, Calif.—documenting her journey and racking up blog clicks and photo double taps along the way. One might call her the millennial female version of Anthony Bourdain. Ko’s impact as an influencer continues to grow as she expands her social-media collaborations. Currently, she’s partnered with companies ranging from IKEA to KitchenAid.

“I started it mostly as a business-travel blog, just your passport to the best day of the week, to a better life. For me, it’s more [about] the people that I attract, people who are looking for a getaway that’s going to enhance their life.” —Chelsea Martin, @passporttofriday

Photo by David Heisler.

#outfitoftheday Whether you’re hopping on a plane to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, or catching up with your girlfriends over drinks at Uchi, one thing’s for sure: You’ve got to wear something you love. Fashion blogs are often the entry points for readers foraying into the blogosphere, and one of the most popular style websites might just be Dani Austin’s. Austin started as a YouTuber about four years ago while studying physical therapy at the University of Texas. “[Posting on YouTube] stemmed from insecurities, really weird phases in my life that I went through [during] adolescence and not having an older sister to guide me through a lot of those things,” Austin discloses. Through her video channel, she shared her experiences and advice about college, friendships and dating with both her teenage- and college-aged viewers, building up a loyal following along the way, subscriber by subscriber. “I didn’t know you could actually do YouTube as a career,” Austin says with a laugh. She soon realized that she could, indeed, do that very thing. While she was still a sophomore in college, agents and managers contacted her after a couple of her videos resulted in 20,000-plus views during the course of just a few months. Much of this instant success had to do with Austin’s natural, congenial on-camera talent and down-to-earth personality, but it was also due to her focus on the back end of things—the business side of things—like understanding algorithms. Six months after starting her channel, Austin had grown her subscriber base to 75,000, signed with a manager and was headed to Los Angeles for the summer to intern at a media company and collaborate with other YouTubers at YouTube Space LA. After returning to Austin (the city, that is) to continue school, Austin kept recording, never hit pause and, to this day, continues to grow her digital empire. “I kept on creating content in my dorm room and at the sorority house,” Austin says. “YouTube wasn’t really a thing in Texas, at least not in Austin, [but] in Texas, I always felt more grounded than in LA. I’d rather be happy, doing what I’m doing, maybe not as big or growing as fast.” When Austin began her senior year, she launched a fashion blog and online jewelry business. “By that time, everything was so innovative, there were so many influencers and everyone was doing it, everyone had a camera. It was so hard to grow at that point,” Austin says. “It was so competitive.” Expanding her social-media presence and consistently posting timely, on-trend blog content pushed Austin into bona fide influencer/social-media-celebrity territory.

“I always tell people you have to pay your dues. I can’t tell you how many free collaborations I did for a year. … It took probably a year and a half before I made a dime.” —Dani Austin, @daniaustin


#hustle While Austin, Ko and Martin connect readers and viewers to three very different industries—fashion, food and travel—they share similar experiences of growing their businesses and have likeminded advice to offer the next generation of aspiring influencers. All three women note the virtue, first and foremost, of patience. Martin explains it took about six months to really get her company off the ground. “I always tell people you have to pay your dues,” Austin adds. “I can’t tell you how many free collaborations I did for a year. … It took probably a year and a half before I made a dime. Like, when you get an internship in college—[which are] rarely paid— you do it for experience and to get your name out there.” Another key characteristic new bloggers must develop is a thick skin.

“Too many people are blogging for the wrong reasons. What they see—that we have these glamorous lives on Instagram—[makes them] want these free vacations and they want these free products, but free doesn’t pay the bills.” —Jane Ko, @atasteofkoko

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“People on the internet can be so mean!” Austin exclaims. “I’ve always gotten mean comments. I’ve gotten used to it. I think what really gets me sometimes is whenever people take my words and twist them. … My faith is a really big part of my life. I have to remind myself daily of what is important to me and what really matters. Otherwise, it’s so easy to get caught up in the opinions of other people, and [this] would be a really hard job.” The most common misconception and stigma these women are up against is the myth that they’re in this business to get free stuff. “Too many people are blogging for the wrong reasons. What they see—that we have these glamorous lives on Instagram— [makes them] want these free vacations and they want these free products, but free doesn’t pay the bills,” Ko says. She suggests before anyone seriously considers joining the influencer ranks that he or she first asks, “Why am I blogging?” Pennies must be pinched when launching a digital career. “Blogging is very expensive and you need to make a really big investment up front, whether it’s in travel or whether it’s in paying for meals,” Ko says. “I’ve spent more on food than I’ve ever spent in my seven years of blogging just because, right now, time is something I can’t buy, so I need to get as much content as I can and push out as much content as I can.” Martin echoes Ko’s statement. “I’ve never gotten paid to do anything travel-related,” she says. “When I started my blog, I was traveling already 250 days a year and that’s why I started my blog, for a creative outlet.” Since Martin was detailing her travel experiences for readers throughout the world, she would receive questions like, “I see you’re in Mexico. Tell me, where should I go?” Advising travelers has been instrumental in Martin’s ability to work for herself full time. “Because I’ve started luxury-travel advising, I’m still paying for my flights and everything, but if I know I’m going to be somewhere, if I want to go somewhere, I can reach out to hotels and usually get a discounted rate,” Martin says. Austin views these expenses as an investment. “I can only shoot clothes that are in stock, so when the clothes go out of stock or out of season, then I have to go find new ones,” she says. “But it is an investment. I can tell when I increase the quality of my cameras or have better inventory to shoot [that] it really does benefit me. … Especially working with brands, I started investing in their product before they ever sent anything for free. They see how passionate you are about their brand and then they reach out to you.” While self-employment offers many perks, like a flexible work schedule, for instance, there’s no doubt that those who want the esteemed title of “digital influencer,” must hustle, and hustling means almost never clocking out. Ko was on three conference calls before arriving to Grizzelda’s and still had work to do after this reporter’s interview. “I choose to stay up until 3 a.m. and then wake up at 8 or 9 a.m., or whenever my first meeting is, and then just power through the day,” she says. “Nobody is forcing me to do that; I’m forcing myself to do that. I’ve done that for three years now since I quit my corporate job. … Having fun feels weird to me. And that’s alarming.”

Martin, the youngest of the group, established a strict personal policy of rest on Saturdays—after the clock strikes noon, that is. “I picked my apartment [downtown] for the sunrise because I’m a sunrise person. So, I wake up at 6:30 a.m. then answer emails,” Martin says. “When I’m home, I answer emails and I work until probably about 12 p.m., then I’ll do a workout class, take my lunch break and then, after that, it’s either meetings or more work.” But when she’s traveling in, say, Europe, Martin wakes up in the middle of the night to respond to emails that are firing off in the States. She recently posted an Instastory asking for advice on how to rest more when you’re multiple time zones ahead of clients. “I don’t know the last time I took a real vacation,” she shares, noting it probably hasn’t been since she graduated college. If bloggers aren’t careful, the pressure to create consistent, quality, Insta-gratifying content can be debilitating. “I feel a lot of stress sometimes whenever I’m trying to make everything perfect,” Austin says. “In the past year, something that’s really helped me is being transparent with people, showing them the behind-the-scenes [aspects] through Snapchat or Instastories, telling them that I’m normal and that this is a job still. Sometimes I go through hard times where I’m not as motivated.” Austin recently moved to Dallas, where she lives in a house with two other women, peers of hers who are also in this business. About 20 percent of her partnerships, however, are still based in Austin. A month or so ago, she posted a frank, strikingly honest one-way conversation via her YouTube channel. In the video, she describes her decision to back out of a house deal in Austin in order to join her current housemates and continue learning about the influencer industry and growing her following and her brand. In short, backing out of a house in Austin was, for the girl with Austin as her last name, just one of many hard business decisions.

HOW TO BE AN INFLUENCER Do you want to be the next big thing? Dani Austin has some insightful advice to share. » “ You don’t have to pigeonhole yourself into

one type of influencer. It’s OK to be more wellrounded and sharing different aspects of your life.”

» “[Being an influencer is] a lot of fun, but if you

want it to be a job for you, you really do need to run it like a business.”

» “ It’s OK to admit to people that you don’t know

how to do something and ask them for help. It’s crazy. It’s bizarre how many people are willing to help you.”

» “ Whenever I want to meet with someone or work

with someone who is more successful than me, it always really helps when you offer them something. For example, whenever I reach out to YouTubers, I’d say, ‘Hey, I’m coming out to LA. I’d love to learn from you and help you film a video shoot.’ That gives people who don’t know who you are an incentive.”


#careergoals In the past decade, the blogosphere has transformed tremendously, evolving from what many viewed as a hobby to what is now commonly identified as a career. Now, there are blogging boot camps, branding workshops and food- and fashion-styling how-to videos. When blogs were just finding their footing, though, few resources were available. Austin, Martin and Ko also have that in common: They are all self-educated, from photography to search engine optimization. Once Austin identified this field as a potential career, she started to take business classes, but says every day is another opportunity to learn. “Any time I didn’t understand anything, I’d YouTube or Google it,” Austin says. “The biggest thing I’ve learned recently, since I’m kind of my own accountant, is managing my finances and getting people to pay out. Oh my gosh, that is the hardest thing. We have contracts, but sometimes they don’t answer, even when you follow up 80 times.” Blogging is indeed a business, requiring not-so-glamorous duties like balancing the books. Martin recommends using QuickBooks Self-Employed, which she says helps measure tax deductions like mileage and travel. Recently, Ko learned she owes $15,000 in taxes, a sentiment well understood by Martin and Austin as well.

#instafamous “Instagram, I think, basically made the blogging industry,” Ko says. “For me, half of my revenue comes from Instagram campaigns. Companies are not interested in advertising on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Snapchat. They’re looking just for Instagram, and now they’re paying just the same, if not more, for just one Instagram post that will be alive for like 10 hours.” “I deleted Snapchat instantly when Instagram Stories came up because I haven’t had a single brand pay for a Snapchat story,” Martin adds. “They can’t measure it. You can’t tag the brand’s page in that.” For influencers, Instagram offers more than Valencia filters and followers. Martin mentions she shows hotels and other brands how many times an Instagram photo was saved in order to demonstrate the benefit of advertising with content creators. For Austin, her Instagram following tends to be a little older, while her YouTube channel has a younger demographic. Only about 10 percent of Austin’s Instagram followers come from her YouTube following, she says, which she uses to her benefit, offering two separate audiences for potential brand partnership. The future of blogging is fluctuating. Part of growing a business is delegating tasks, hiring help and devising future goals. Managing help as a 20-something blogger doesn’t come without its limitations, say, for instance, dealing with an ineffective CPA. Martin recently hired her mother as a trusted employee, and Austin employs an assistant, a socialmedia assistant, a photographer and a videographer for her YouTube videos. Ko acknowledges the difficulty in hiring out because she wants to be in control of her business. “I always tell people you have to stay true to yourself and have a heart behind what you’re doing, otherwise you get burnt out really quick,” Austin says. “Everything moves so fast now, you have to be willing to adapt because what works now doesn’t work in six months.” 62 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017





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Rich Content. Audible. Only 4 Minutes. Free.







An afternoon outing to the farmers market is all you need for a spark of meal inspiration. STORY AND PHOTOS BY NATALIE PARAMORE It’s sweet summertime and farmers-market stands are filled to the brim with luscious berries, ripe tomatoes and juicy peaches. Proudly grown Texas produce is at its finest, which means there is no better time than the present to get creative in the kitchen and try some new recipes. For liquid courage, we’ve included a punch recipe that can be whipped up in a jiffy for a group gathering, or halved for a small, party-of-one happy hour.


Ingredients 1/2 cup sugar 1 cup filtered water, divided 2 cups peaches, sliced, plus 4 additional slices for garnish 3 to 4 rosemary sprigs 6 ounces bourbon

Directions 1. In a pot over medium heat, combine 1/2 cup sugar with 1/2 cup filtered water and 2 cups sliced peaches. Reduce to simple syrup, stirring for about 10 minutes until the sugar is completely dissolved. Using a mesh strainer, strain the peaches from the syrup and let them cool in a bowl with the rosemary sprigs. 2. G  rill the sliced peaches on a panini press or grill over medium heat for about five to six minutes, until grill marks have formed and the peaches are slightly soft but still retain their shape. 3. Remove the rosemary from the peach simple syrup.

2 cups Topo Chico 6 dashes angostura bitters 2 ounces lemon juice

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4. In a pitcher or bowl, combine the peach simple syrup with the bourbon, Topo Chico, 1/2 cup water, bitters and lemon juice. 5. S  erve the punch over ice cubes and garnish with a grilled peach slice and small rosemary sprig.


Ingredients 2 10-inch pizza crusts 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided 1 teaspoon garlic salt, divided 2 cups arugula 1 teaspoon lemon juice 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, reduced 1 tablespoon Parmesan, shaved 2 small or medium fresh tomatoes 3 ounces fresh mozzarella

Directions 1. Brush each of the pizza crusts with one tablespoon olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt. Toast the crusts in the oven according to the package directions. 2. Meanwhile, toss the arugula with lemon juice and the remaining olive oil. 3. In a small saucepan, reduce balsamic vinegar for five minutes over medium-low heat, until thick and sticky. Let it cool. 4. Top the pizza crusts with Parmesan, then add the arugula and 1/2-inch thick slices of tomatoes and mozzarella. 5. D  rizzle with the balsamic and enjoy immediately!




1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1. P  reheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a loaf pan.

3/4 teaspoon salt

2. M  ix the flour, salt and baking powder together in one bowl.

2 teaspoons baking powder

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, lemon juice and canola oil.

2 eggs 3/4 cup sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 cup lemon juice 1/2 cup canola oil 3/4 cup Greek yogurt 1 cup blueberries

4. C  ombine the wet and dry ingredients, then incorporate the Greek yogurt and gently fold in the blueberries. Be careful not to overmix. 5. P  our the mixture into the loaf pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until it’s cooked all the way through. (Pro tip: To test, insert a toothpick into the top of the pound cake. When the toothpick comes out clean, the pound cake is cooked.) 6. L  et it cool and then serve. Store it in an airtight container for as long as five days.






This new East Austin food bus packs a punch. BY EMMA WHALEN Kati Luedecke uses every square inch of her food bus—not to be confused with a food truck or trailer—to pack in a breadth of Central Texas-influenced Peruvian cuisine. The bus, located on Airport Boulevard in East Austin’s Govalle neighborhood, is set to have its grand opening June 3.

Photo by Carol Anders.

Luedecke plans to cook up a creative, Peruvian-focused menu of brunch and lunch during the day and run a supper club and catering service by night. As the chef and owner of Killa Wasi, Luedecke spent several years in the Austin restaurant industry before hatching plans to open her own establishment. She takes yearly trips to Peru to study the country’s cuisine, and her modern twist on the country’s food culture utilizes Central Texas ingredients like yucca, boar and pork.

For breakfast, try a rocoto boar sausage benedict or a stack of quinoa pancakes. At lunch, snack on confit pork sandwiches with a side of grilled papaya for a sweet treat. A grab-and-go deli case will offer pressed-fortime customers a chance to pick up salads, breads and cured meats. The dedication to authenticity Luedecke puts into her work is reflected in the name of her bus. Translated from Peru’s native Quechuan language, Killa Wasi means “moon house,” a tribute to Mama Killa, the Incan goddess of the moon. Luedecke says she hopes to honor Peru’s varied natural wonders—from the coast to the deserts, mountains and rainforests—through her cuisine. Make an afternoon outing to this small, mobile wonder bus, and you might just forget you’re still in Austin.

Pastel de choclo, corn cakes with smoked avocado crema and pickled corn

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with so much to love about whiskey, we’re dedicating an entire month to this sensational spirit.


Photos by John Edward Hernandez and Tina Phan.

(Left to right): Kati Luedecke, Sydney Crain and Eva Billingsley

whiskey 101 classes whiskey sale grand whiskey event father’s day gifts

For more information visit

Smoked trout and cassava hash, poached eggs, aji verde and lima beans

TwinLiquors.com Authentically Austintm since 1937 Must be 21+ to participate. Please drink responsibly.





Neighborly vibes abound at these two downtown locales.


THE BOILER ROOM BAR 800 W. Cesar Chavez St., boilernine.com

The Boiler Room Bar photo by Casey Dunn.

Located in what was formerly the Seaholm Power Plant’s boiler room, the appropriately named Boiler Room Bar is now a clandestine, candle-lit, basement-like escape. This is the place to come for those after-work drinks with friends, especially for the crowd that wants to stay in the heart of the city and, most importantly, stay alive in the incomparable heat of a summer afternoon in Austin. The Boiler Room Bar is the lowest tier of the four-level restaurant Boiler Nine Bar + Grill, which helms the main floor. Before retreating down the elevator and into the dim, curtained-off, cavernous space below, it’s worth making your way to the top tier—the Deck Nine Observatory Bar—to soak in the sunset. Once you’ve made your final descent to a table at the Boiler Room Bar, act like a regular and place an order or two of beer bread, two house-baked rolls served with barbecue salt, smoked beef-fat butter and beer jam. Yes, it’s as delicious and decadent as it sounds. (Pro tip: For your first libation, try the Drop City with bourbon. Mixed with wildflower peach, lemon, black-tea bitters and spearmint, the drink is a sweet and citrusy concoction that feels just light enough to order up another.) It may sound cliché to call a bar a hideaway, but you’ll be hard pressed to find a place more deserving of the title.

68 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

NIGHTCAP Nightcap interior and exterior photos by Bruce Malone. Food photo by Justin Rouhier.

1401 W. Sixth St., nightcapaustin.com Although this charming date-night locale has been open for only about a year and a half, step inside and you’ll find an emanating sense of permanence and place. Then again, that’s exactly how this spot should feel. After all, the bar and restaurant are housed in a renovated West Sixth Street home. There’s a comfortable, low-key elegance about the deep-purple- and gray-hued dining room and a convivial friendliness among the bar staff that makes hours after entering seem to pass by in minutes. For those looking to enjoy a pleasant night out without getting too close to the rowdy scene on Sixth Street, Nightcap is your antidote. Nightcap was originally promoted as a desserts-and-drinks-focused dining spot, but the dinner menu is more than capable of holding its own in the spotlight. (Pro tip: Place an order of Adam’s Olives to start.) Be sure to swing by the bar on Sundays from 5 to 10 p.m. for Nightcap’s Burgers & Burgundy night. Ask to top your house-made burger with homemade bacon jam, smoked avocado and a sunny-side-up egg. Just don’t be alarmed when you find yourself in a satiated, transcendental state. To digest, retreat to the grassy front lawn and spend the remainder of the evening resting languidly on a couch and sipping a Red Light Special, a cocktail consisting of mezcal, green chartreuse and pomegranate, topped with a sprig of torched rosemary.






Here’s the info women need to know now. BY JILL CASE


Research published in the journal Cancer found women’s risk of dying from cervical cancer has been vastly underestimated, particularly for African-American women. The study calculated the risk to include women who have had a total hysterectomy, a surgery in which the cervix is removed. Once this group was included, researchers determined death rates from cervical cancer were 77 percent higher than previously stated, and the rate of Caucasian women being diagnosed with cervical cancer was 47 percent higher. While more research needs to be done to account for the racial disparity, the higher death rate for all races does point to the continuing need for cervical-cancer screenings. PREVENTION

Women have been getting annual Pap tests for years, but researchers’ and doctors’ understanding of the role of the human papillomavirus have led to new guidelines for cervical-cancer screenings. Cervical cancer is primarily caused by HPV, a virus that is transmitted via skin-to-skin genital contact during intercourse. The HPV virus can cause changes to the cells, which may become precancerous. With cervical cancer, precancerous cells often take from three to seven years or more to become cancerous cells, so early detection of precancerous cells is very important. Women who discover they have precancerous cells can get screened more frequently and treated, allowing for better prevention of cervical cancer. Women can also take steps to protect themselves from exposure to the HPV virus. Thanks to cervical-cancer screenings, vaccines and early diagnosis, cervical cancer is now preventable and treatable, a fact that further affirms the importance of seeing your doctor for a screening.

The new guidelines followed by the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists are still confusing to many women, especially those who were accustomed to getting an annual Pap test. Here is a summary of what you need to know about cervical-cancer screenings: • Women ages 21 and younger do not need to be screened. •W  omen ages 21 to 29 need a Pap test every three years, but do not need testing for HPV. • Women ages 30 to 65 should have co-testing, which means getting both a Pap test and an HPV test every five years. A pap test without HPV screening every three years is also an option. •W  omen age 65 and older should talk to their doctor about their testing needs. Certain women may need to be tested more frequently, including women with a history of cervical cancer, women already infected with HPV or those who were exposed to DES (diethylstilbestrol) in the womb.

PREVENTION TIPS 3 The best way to prevent cervical cancer is to take steps to avoid exposure to HPV. The virus is spread by skin-to-skin genital contact with someone who is already infected with the virus. One step alone will not prevent cervical cancer, but practicing the behaviors listed here may help lower your risk. 3 Be aware of the sexual practices that put you at higher risk for developing HPV, including having multiple sexual partners, having sex with a partner who has had multiple partners, initiating sexual intercourse at a young age or having sex with an uncircumcised male. 3 Practice safe sex at all times. Use a condom. Male condoms are more effective than female condoms in preventing sexually transmitted infections. 3 Get cervical-cancer screenings, even if you have had the HPV vaccine. 3 If you’re age 26 or younger, get the HPV vaccine (Cervarix or Gardisil). If you have daughters or sons ages 11 or older, they are also eligible to receive this vaccine.

CERVICAL CANCER BY THE NUMBERS • In the United States, approximately 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year. • Approximately 4,000 American women with cervical cancer die annually. • The median age of a cervical-cancer patient is 49, with the majority of cases occurring between the ages of 30 and 50, but women of every age are at risk. (Numbers compiled from cancer.gov, cdc.gov and womenshealth.gov.)

70 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017



Using Your Power to Create Success and Significance

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Women are the key to the nation’s financial success and you are part of a global revolution.

VIP EXPERIENCE Investment: $997


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Would your business benefit from insight from Sharon Lechter, the powerhouse behind the Think and Grow Rich for Women and Rich Dad Global Brands? Experience a Private Mastermind with Sharon— Limited to 10 women on Sunday morning, July 16th. Investment: $2,997 Sponsorship opportunities are available. Contact Jan Goss at 512.577.8479 or jan@civilityconsulting.com for more information.




Endocrinology is the science of hormones, which affect every cell and every function in your body. The glands secreting these hormones form your endocrine system, a tightly interconnected system with thousands of feedback loops. It is far more complex than any supercomputer today. Hormones control everything in your body from birth to death. Without hormones, your body cannot function. Examples of hormones: estrogen, testosterone, insulin and hormones like thyroid, cortisol, adrenal and pituitary.


They are diseases caused by a malfunction of one or more endocrine glands in your body. Examples: thyroid, osteoporosis, metabolic syndrome and obesity, hirsutism, menopause, low testosterone in males, andropause and impotence, polycystic ovaries, irregular or lack of menstrual periods, high and low calcium, and diabetes.


hypothyroidism. Thyroid ailments include Graves’ and Hashimoto disease, goiter, thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer. Thyroid problems require lifelong attention. Each person has a different genetic set point for TSH, the thyroid stimulation hormone.


Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones become fragile and more likely to break. Osteoporosis affects one in two women and one in four men over the age of 50 and is generally missed. Bone fracture is considered to be the heart attack of the bone and can have major consequences on your quality of life, from reduced mobility to potential loss of mobility altogether. A bone density test is the only way to test for osteoporosis. We perform such testing and provide consultation on bone metabolism and osteoporosis treatment.

HORMONE MYTHS DEBUNKED The facts about some hormone myths:

“Seek your optimal health, your ideal yet achievable health, and increase the quality of your life.”

Aging, other diseases, stress, environmental and genetic factors do influence your endocrine system. Aging changes how hormones are produced and absorbed by your body. Genetic factors and other diseases can do the same. Stress triggers a cascade of hormones that affect your heart, kidneys and other organs. Recent research identified endocrine disrupting chemicals in our environment.


Hormone treatments must be followed by a hormone specialist (endocrinologist) the same way heart disease is followed by a heart specialist (cardiologist). An endocrinologist has years of special training in diagnosing and treating your hormone imbalances. Endocrine diseases are often missed, since symptoms are often subtle and easy to brush aside. An endocrinologist starts out with a thorough physical evaluation looking for these telltale sings, then follows up with a battery of blood and other lab tests. Often, additional highly specialized tests are involved to identify the root cause of your hormonal imbalance.


Since hormones rule your body, have your hormonal balance assessed by an endocrinologist to optimize your health. Dr. Simone Scumpia of Austin Thyroid & Endocrinology outlines everything you need to know about hormones and their effect on the body.

Thyroid disease affects 30 million Americans, yet half of them do not know they have it. It is called the “silent disease.” One in eight women will develop a thyroid disorder in their life; women are five to eight times more likely than men to develop hyperthyroidism or

3 Bioidentical hormones are not human identical and may cause complications.

3 Fountain of youth hormones (otherwise known as human growth hormones) can cause serious side effects when used for anti-aging.

3 hCG diets (HCG) by themselves do not cause weight loss, but can cause irregular periods for women and breast enlargement for men.

3 Hormone treatment of fatigue, depression or anti-aging should be avoided due to many side effects it can cause. 3 Adrenal fatigue is not a real disease, but adrenal failure is a life threatening disease.


Medicine addresses disease treatment and prevention. Optimal health and biological age deal with your health before disease prevention or treatment. We focus on optimal health, the ideal yet achievable health of your body as you reach middle age and beyond. Our specialized equipment allows us to measure and evaluate your biological age, a measure of how well or poorly your body is functioning relative to your actual calendar age. Biological age is a composite of several “ages” such as brain age, bone age, heart age and vessel age. Optimal health focuses on your wellness before disease can be identified; it is a step before disease prevention and does improve the quality of your life.



(behind North Austin Medical Center) MON-FRI, 7 AM TO 4 PM 512.467.2727 | austinthyroid.com

Dr. Simone Scumpia treats all thyroid and endocrine (hormonal) ailments with emphasis on optimal health and biological age.





Buying locally made nutrition bars is beneficial, in more ways than one. BY NONA EVANS AND ALESSANDRA REY

Eat this: locally made food bars Not that: run-of-the-mill granola bars Says who: Nona Evans, president and executive director of Whole Kids Foundation Why: “Locally owned companies provide jobs in your community, which helps the overall local economy. At the Whole Kids Foundation, we encourage parents to choose food bars that have the most fruit and vegetable ingredients. We know that kids generally don’t get anywhere close to the recommended servings of veggies, so any time you can add those in the form of whole veggie ingredients, it will give their nutrition a boost.”


r Bearded Brothers Energy Bars. “These come in varieties like Fabulous Ginger Peach, Radical Raspberry Lemon, Mega Maca Chocolate and others. They have no added sugar and are also gluten- and soy-free. The serving size for these bars is smaller, so it’s nice for a snack.” r Oatmega bars. “Oatmega has flavors like wild blueberry crisp and chocolate mint chip. They keep the total sugar per bar at 5 grams, which is good.” r Thunderbird Bars. “Thunderbird has flavors like pecans goji pistachios and pineapple mango papaya. They also don’t use any added sugar, so the sugar in their products is all from the real food ingredients.”

74 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Photos courtesy of their respective companies. Nona Evans photo courtesy of Nona Evans.

rE  pic Bars. “These are definitely not granola bars. They are meat bars. Varieties include things like chicken, bison, wild boar and smoked maple salmon. These bars are relatively low in sugar, and what sugar is present is from ingredients like fruit or maple syrup. They are also gluten-free and high in protein, which is an important choice for so many parents. These would be good bars for summer road trips or to keep handy while outdoors hiking or camping.”






Help us raise 1 million meals for families in need. Together, we can end summer hunger.


centraltexasfoodbank.org formerly Capital Area Food Bank






Olympic sprinter Courtney Okolo is on track to win more gold. BY GRETCHEN M. SANDERS The gun pops and Courtney Okolo springs from the starting blocks in the women’s 4x400-meter relay at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. It’s the biggest track-and-field event the sleek and muscular sprinter has ever seen. At 22, she handles the leadoff leg with impressive composure. Minutes later, the gold medal belongs to her.

Long before her Olympic victory, Okolo turned heads as a standout runner for the University of Texas, winning multiple NCAA Championship titles in the women’s 400-meter and 4x400-meter relay. Last year, she won both events at the NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Championships, had an undefeated senior season and became the first female collegian to run 400 meters in less than 50 seconds. Those stunts earned her the Bowerman Award, essentially the Heisman Trophy of collegiate track and field and the highest individual honor given in the sport.

A look at Okolo’s past predicts more gold in her future. In the individual 400-meter outdoors, Okolo owns the first, second, sixth and 10th best times in collegiate history. She also has the third-fastest collegiate 400-meter indoor time on the books. Many of the fastest indoor and outdoor 4x400-meter collegiate relays ever run had her name on the roster. At graduation last spring, Okolo clearly had much more to celebrate than earning her kinesiology degree. Turning pro after college has given Okolo a new focus. “My main goal now is to make the World Championship team,” she says with a shy smile. She will do just that if she runs well at trials in June. With World Championships starting later this summer in London, a global stage once again awaits this running phenom. Here’s how Courtney Okolo stays on track to set records.


“My eyes open around 7 in the morning, but I always double check my phone to get the exact time. I never set an alarm because we don’t start training until about 10 a.m. I also read a devotional every morning on my phone. My faith is important to me.” “We train five days a week. With set seasons in track and field, there are times when we work very hard, followed by periods of rest. We just started our outdoor season, and it seems like I’m at the track all day right now. We begin training midmorning with maintenance work, doing stretches and using machines to warm up our muscles. Then we spend about one and a half hours working out on the track with our coach. After that, I go to the weight room. It’s like a full-time job. I’m tired when I get home.” THE DIET:

“My mom is a nurse, and she raised us to eat right. I can’t prepare a meal without putting a veggie on my plate. I try to have some kind of protein for breakfast, like maybe some yogurt with fruit, and for lunch I eat whatever I can find around the field house. I drink a full bottle of water before practice, and I’ll finish at least three more throughout the day. I don’t drink soda or alcohol, but I do eat fried food, even though it makes me feel guilty, and I love kettle corn.” THE GEAR:

“Nike sponsors me, so I run in their Lunars. Nike also sends me a lot of colorful clothing, but I’m not colorful. I prefer to wear Army green, and I like my outfits to match. I usually start a training session wearing tights to keep my legs warm, but I take them off as I get into the meat of my workout. By the end of it, I’m down to a sports bra and spandex shorts. I listen to music during warm-up, and I always wear my cross necklace, which my mother gave me for Christmas one year. I wore it when I ran in the Olympics, so I guess it’s my good-luck charm.” THE MOTIVATION:

“I’m very competitive, and I’m especially competitive with myself. I don’t need anyone else to make me go faster. I always want to win. I don’t even think about giving up. I also enjoy training hard, so I see it as a good challenge. Plus, I just like to run.” 76 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017


8 8 n barbecue 8 n Barton Springs 8 n hours 8 n food truck 8 North Austin n Town Lake n

coffee n Whole Foods n


n South Austin n neighborhood trail n Tex-Mex n Deep Eddy n miles n brick-and-mortar location n juice 8 n Central Market 8

rescue n

n purebred

mountain bike n

n road bike 8

8 8

Torchy’s Tacos n Alamo Drafthouse n MoPac n


frozen yogurt n

n Tacodeli n Congress Avenue bats n I-35 8 n ice cream

Top photo courtesy of Texas Athletics. Bottom photo courtesy of Courtney Okolo.


Photo by Kirby L ​ ​ee ​with U ​ SA Today Sports.


“I want to live past my potential. I want to go past whatever goals I set for myself. Wherever I think I’ll end up in a year, I want to go past that point. And if someone is faster than me, then I just say, ‘Well, I haven’t gotten there yet, but I will, eventually.’ ”

HER PLAYLIST Diamonds Dancing by Drake Too Deep for the Intro by J. Cole Humble by Kendrick Lamar Mask Off by Future


“I take an Epsom salt bath every night before bed. We’re in the middle of a training season right now, and my body is starting to feel it. I also have these NormaTec compression boots that I put on for about 20 minutes each night to help my legs recover. I like to wear them while I eat popcorn and watch a few episodes of Bob’s Burgers. Lights out at 11:30 p.m.”

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A shift in thinking is setting the next generation apart—and ahead. BY JB HAGER, PHOTO BY RUDY AROCHA

They see the traditional office environment as stifling and a drag. Do you remember being excited the first time your employer showed you your new cubicle? You couldn’t wait to hang up a picture of your cat. But flexible, on-the-go working is great for the entrepreneurial mindset. it is you want Millennials are more likely to live to be older “This generation of young adults and the next than 100. It wasn’t that long ago that human to do, just proclaim generation will be great entrepreneurs because beings weren’t living past the age of 60. It made so yourself as an expert they are the everyone-gets-a-trophy generation,” much sense to settle down quickly and likely be a he said, and then went more in depth. “Think about in your bio. It will grandparent by the age of 45. Taking risks just wasn’t it. Failure doesn’t bother them because they were rarely be questioned. in the cards. rewarded just the same. Their mindset is not to be A lot of kids are approaching college differently too. devastated by failure, but to just dust Even if they choose to go to college, they themselves off, forget about it and go are opting to take a gap year and travel grab some chilled orange slices.” the world. What a great opportunity to Before I snapped back at him, figure out who you are, what you really I had to let this process. I tried love and what you are most passionate playing baseball for a year. My about. That passion is likely to fuel team was horrible and I was worse. your own endeavor. It seems like every We never won a game and came product I pick up at Whole Foods tells in last in the league. That was the the same entrepreneurial story on year I tossed my glove into a box, the label: “When I was traveling the and it hasn’t come out since. I was Himalayas, I came up with a genius idea humiliated by failure. I was a huge to create this product,” blah, blah, blah. Kansas City Royals fan and, in my Most millennials are also starting eyes, you were either George Brett families later. If you are not starting a or you were not. There was no family until 35 or 40, it gives you the middle ground. So, I walked away. freedom to try more things. When I was With Todd’s theory in mind, I in my early 20s, everything I owned started to explore more reasons why fit into my Jeep. My furniture wasn’t kids today are going to be better worth keeping and I couldn’t afford a entrepreneurs. newspaper classified ad anyway. So, College has become a questionable I just left it all behind and thought path for many. Costs have nothing of darting across the country skyrocketed and kids are leaving for a job and an unknown future. college saddled with debt and no Imagine being able to stay in that guarantee of a job. Any young adult mindset another 15 years. with an entrepreneurial mindset Young people have no problems and an idea can’t stand the thought giving themselves a title. I’m from a of sitting through geology class just generation that would only use a title if because it is required. (No offense your boss gave it to you. Case in point: to geologists.) Unless colleges start I got teary-eyed when I was promoted adding more startup-mentality type to “crew chief” at Hardee’s at just 16 of courses, it might just be a waste of years old. time and money for many. Why not Every spring, I am a guest speaker find your own path? for a marketing/PR class, and I tell Millennials grew up seeing that them, “Whatever it is you want to do, anything is possible and anyone just proclaim yourself as an expert in can create anything at any age. your bio. It will rarely be questioned.” I The internet, software and mobile tell them to start saying what they are booms of the last two decades made everything seem possible. It’s likely how European emigrants felt and they will get there quicker, and people will accept them as such. coming to America in the 1800s: “They are just giving land away! Whether you want to be a writer, journalist or software engineer, just Let’s go get some!” start saying it. They love this advice. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work I remember growing up feeling like everything had been done with surgeon or founder of Facebook, but you get the idea. already. I would think, “Well, cars, phones, light bulbs and the printing I can’t tell you how many young people I’ve met who consider press have already been invented. What’s left?” themselves business consultants, yet they’ve never run a business. Young people are also comfortable working out of coffee shops. Young people are not afraid to stake their claim in the world.

A friend of mine—Todd O’Brien, a former entrepreneurin-residence at Dell UK—gave me the most eye-opening theory on why kids today will make the best entrepreneurs. Don’t hate me for this. I just want you to think about it. Whatever

78 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

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As a young woman on the autism spectrum, I have learned that communication is vital for my well-being. I have also learned that communication comes in many forms. Growing up, communicating with the people around me was always a challenge, and sometimes it still is. When I get upset, I have trouble explaining what is wrong. When I meet new people, sometimes they are taken aback and even offended by my behavior. It is hard for me to understand what is appropriate to say, when it is appropriate to say things and who I should or shouldn’t say certain things to. My brain blurs out social-boundary lines that exist and sometimes I accidentally cross into other people’s boundaries and usually it results in conflict. However, I love people more than anything and as I’ve grown older, I’ve learned ways that I can communicate my love to people. Even though I am on the higher functioning end of the autism spectrum and am highly verbal, it is still easier for me to communicate to people through writing. Communicating through writing involves more than just pen and paper. There are many ways to write what is on your mind. People write stories, poems, songs and more. When I was in high school, I developed a love for writing rap songs. I don’t write rap songs like the ones on the radio with profane words. Rather, I write raps about self-love, staying optimistic and why it is good to just be yourself. I believe everyone is an amazing person, and when I rap for people, my lyrics convey that message. Being able to communicate through rap to my friends, my loved ones and even people I meet out and about has better enabled me to form relationships with people. It has also helped people better understand me and my intentions. For me, rap is like a translator. It takes my emotions, feelings and ideas, and creates a way for others to understand them.

Through writing raps and showing them to others, I have allowed people to enter into my world. It is a world full of color, imagination, hope and love. I plan to continue sharing my world through rap as I get older. As a college student, I am around people every day. Some people know me and understand me, but many do not. Rap has helped break down the social language barrier between me and the other people at my school, and allowed me to really connect with the Greek life at my school. I write and perform raps at all the Greek events. My main focus is my philanthropy work in the community, and I have made connections with many organizations regarding how I can help them through my raps. I rapped at the sorority Delta Gamma’s 5K race event that was raising money for the organization Service for Sight. I’ve also rapped at a basketball tournament benefiting the Wounded Warrior Project and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Each semester, I host my annual Fran’s Lemonade Stand, where I sell lemonade and donate all the money to various causes and organizations. One of the attractions at my lemonade stand is my rapping. I love it when people come watch my performances and I really love it when they listen to the lyrics and take in the uplifting messages in the words. I truly love communicating positive messages by performing my raps and hope to continue doing so. When organizations ask me to rap at their events, I am always thrilled. Even if their event isn’t raising money or awareness for a cause, I still am eager to rap, just to spread love. With my philanthropy work, my raps and the connections and bonds I’ve formed, I hope that I can one day bring people together and teach them to love one another and themselves just the way they are.

Austin Woman features a reader-submitted essay every month in the I Am Austin Woman column. To be considered for August’s I Am Austin Woman, email a 500-word submission on a topic of your choice by July 1 to submissions@awmediainc.com with the subject line “I Am Austin Woman.”

80 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2017

Photo by Madelynne Scales.

College student Frances Sheinberg harnesses her musical talent to connect with her peers.

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