Venture Moms Reveal Their Secrets for Success - NEW DATE

Category: Classes and WorkshopsCategory: Speakers & Lecture Series
Location: Adrian Lamb Room

Join Holly Hurd and a panel of entrepreneur moms on Monday, January 28 at 10:00 a.m. in the Lamb Room, to learn the five things that most mom entrepreneurs have in common, and see how you can use them for your venture idea.  Hear from moms who are currently running their own business ventures.  Even if you don't want to start a business, you'll find this panel discussion fun and inspiring. Ideal for anyone who has questions about how to turn a hobby into a business or take a current venture to the next level.  Topics will include picking the right name, marketing, and using social media to build your brand.

Panelists include Jill Brack, of Glow Gluten Free Cookies, who has her brand in select Whole Foods across the country;  Michelle Mauboussin, of Tara Michelle, who has created a line of beach cover ups and tunics to be seen in stores in the North East beginning in January; Sybille Campbell and Anne-Laure Martyn, who offer furniture  restored in the French way; and Barbara Erdmann, photographer.  Each of our panelists is a VentureMom who will share their stories from the front lines of a starting a business. 

And as an added bonus, audience members who have venture ideas, will be able to pitch their projects and get feedback from the panel.

This panel will be moderated by Holly Hurd, founder of, a web site devoted to covering moms who have their own businesses. Holly has interviewed hundreds of moms in all areas making her uniquely qualified to speak on entrepreneurship for the small start up. Her web site offers a free newsletter and the VentureMom Shop which showcases the products and services of many of the moms she covers.

Please register, if you can, to let us know you'll be coming, but drop-ins are always welcome!

More about the panelists:


Jill Brack - Film and entertainment industry executive turned real estate developer, Jill Brack rarely spent time in the kitchen. That changed in 2004 when she and her daughter Stella were diagnosed with celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder in which the intestines become damaged by eating gluten. Jill began baking gluten free cookies that she and her daughter could enjoy by replacing traditional wheat flour with nutrient dense garbanzo bean and coconut flour. Soon friends and family who weren’t restricted to a gluten free diet began asking for more and in 2008 Glow Gluten Free was born.

Glow Gluten Free bakes four flavors of gluten free and dairy free cookies with natural and organic ingredients in a certified gluten free and kosher bakery. The brand is popular with both conventional and gluten free cookie connoisseurs are currently sold at specialty, gourmet and health food stores and Whole Food Markets.

Jill and her cookies have been featured on Rachael Ray and Martha Stewart’s TV shows as well as profiled in InStyle, Real Simple and New York Magazine. She has recently been honored by The Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University for her work in advocating for celiac awareness. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Harvest Home Farmers Markets, increasing access to farm fresh produce in low income neighborhoods in NYC. Jill is a graduate of The American University in Washington DC and The Institute of Integrative Nutrition and  lives in NYC with her husband and daughter in NYC.

Michelle Mauboussin - We (Michelle and Tara Vessels) are both veterans of 7th Avenue with experience in design, merchandising as well as high-end retail for woman’s clothing. We took time off from the business after having children but we never lost our passion for stylish and sophisticated design. Avid runners, we were on the trail one day and discussed our mutual aspiration to go back to work once our oldest children were off to college. (We have eight children between us!) Both of us grew up by the beach and we continue to cherish the moments we spend there with family and friends. Our desire to find the perfect cover up, as well our love of sun, sand and travel, inspired our line. The result is Tara-Michelle, a collection of clean, fresh designs that flatter a woman’s body. Our mission is to make women feel comfortable, confident, and carefree at the beach!

Sybille Campbell and Anne-Laure Martyn - Sybille and Anne-Laure are co-owners of La Grange De Silvermine, a home-design firm in New Canaan. Both women were born in France and discovered their love of interior design when challenged with decorating their own homes.

After moving from Paris to New York City in 2000, Campbell worked in advertising before beginning her training at the New York School of Interior Design. When she relocated to Fairfield County in 2006, she struggled to decorate and furnish her 1779 converted barn with great-looking furniture on a tight budget. This is where the idea for La Grange De Silvermine was born.
Anne-Laure Martyn grew up on the coast of Brittany and has always been attracted to the aesthetic aspects of life. After working in the fashion and garment industry in Paris, Martyn spent four years in London before moving to the United States in 2004. She became passionate for interior design while redecorating her classic 18th-century Parisian apartment and later the complete renovation and restyling of her home in Connecticut.

La Grange De Silvermine gathers faded antiques and furniture and refreshes them with a coat of paint, a new fabric, or a trendy finish. The team organizes private event in Campbell’s unique barn to showcase their selection of restored vintage pieces.

Barbara Erdmann - Creating photos that have been described as surreal, abstract, radiant, and timeless, Barbara says, "They simply make me happy."

"Photography has been a passion of mine since the mid 1990s. Over the years, I photographed my own three boys and then slowly but surely expanded into taking photographs of other people’s children. I specialized in capturing a wonderful moment in time.

Now my camera travels with me wherever I go with my husband and sons. In the past few years I’ve found myself fascinated with textures and reflections, with the play of light on water and objects. On Harbour Island in the Bahamas, my eye has been caught by the abstract designs of wind-blown sand and the striking patterns of seashells under glistening water. In Steamboat, Colorado, I’ve become obsessed with horses—amazing animals that are a photographer’s dream. The curl and crash of a wave after a hurricane on Block Island and the intricacy of a newly opened white chrysanthemum at the New York Botanical Garden are two more of my favorite “moments in time.”

To capture these moments and close-up textures, I use a Canon camera and lens to ensure the highest resolution for my photos. I will click a thousand times before I capture the one spectacular photo that speaks to me. I become a bit obsessed.
Because of the sharpness and resolution, my photos can be blown up as big as the world. When printed large scale on special metallic paper, these up-close photographs take on a shimmering luster and monumentality that make them iconic pieces of art."