Courage Winners

At MoxxieMade, we define a courageous woman as someone who believes in her worth, a woman that lovingly picks herself up after a fall, a women that despite her fears drives towards her goals and dreams. It takes courage to be authentically yourself, to be vulnerable, to be bold in your truth, to speak your views. It takes courage to allow yourself to be fully seen, and to us, that’s the essence of living big -confidently and courageously living your authentic truth, and these twelve women inspire us at MoxxieMade to do just that.

Amani Richardson    @amanirakeia    Connecticut

Amani Richardson
Sad Girls Club

Amani is courageously living out the true definition of vulnerability. She is constantly growing and working towards being her best self. Self-love, healing and boldly pursuing your wildest dreams is what she embodies.

Amani Richardson finds passion in sharing stories that connect all women. She has become a Lifestyle Blogger and Editor-In-Chief of the Sad Girls Club. In her senior year of high school, after overcoming a near death experience from heartbreak, she knew she had to illuminate the world with her story...


What do you think makes up a courageous person?

A courageous person is anyone who chooses to tell their story. No matter what it may be...

What’s been the biggest issue or challenge that really tested you? How did you pull through it bravely?

The biggest challenge has always been being completely honest with myself, which will go along with...

We are also honoring Elyse Fox of Sad Girls Club as a #MadeofMoxxie Award recipient, and we know you are a contributor. How did you get involved?

I am Editor-In-Chief of the Sad Girls Club. I had the opportunity to meet Elyse in person at a speaking event she held at Yale...

Ayah Bdeir
Founder & CEO of littleBits
Hudson Yard

Through Ayah’s passion for STEM and through her company, littleBits, she is empowering future generations to embrace creativity, innovation, and challenging them to understand the world around them. She’s helping to lead a movement that allows especially young girls more accessibility to the necessary tools to advance innovation in the tech space. A courageous feat to take on.

Ayah Bdeir is the founder and CEO of littleBits, an award-winning platform of easy-to-use electronic building blocks that...


How do you define courage?

We’re living in a time when technology has permeated almost every area of our lives, but most people are content to be only passive consumers of it...

What inspired your passion for advocating gender neutrality?

I want to encourage boys and girls to create things that will change the world by exposing them to things they may not have known...

What's the most rewarding and the most challenging aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Developing something new, something that never existed before, takes time. Solving real problems takes time. In order to be successful, you need to devote time to your passion...


Emma Gray
Author of "A Girl's Guide To Joining The Resistance”
East Village

A cheerleader of women, Emma bravely faced her fears and harnessed her courage to push up against gender and societal norms. With aspirations to give those who are marginalized a voice, she’s become a champion of women.

Emma Gray is a senior reporter focused on women's issues at HuffPost, and the author of "A Girl's Guide To Joining The Resistance." She is also the co-host...


What was your inspiration behind "A Girl's Guide to Joining the Resistance?"

I covered the 2016 presidential election for HuffPost, which meant that I was at the Javits Center along with the Hillary Clinton...

Did you feel any apprehensions or insecurities when speaking your truth in the book? If so, how did you push past that or get comfortable with the uncomfortable?

It's always terrifying to put yourself out there, especially in a permanent form...

What would you like women to get out of reading your book?

I want women, who are so often told to make ourselves smaller...


Hawa Arsala
Freelance Creative Director and Founder of Browntourage
Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Hawa’s unapologetic refined style and how she expresses her individualist self is inspiring to the New York community. Her confidence in herself as a woman of color, as an entrepreneur, and simply as an individual is refreshing because she knows her worth.

Hawa Arsala is a freelance creative director and strategist....



How would you like to inspire other women around the world with your work?

If there is something along my path that sticks out to them, that speaks to them, or encourages them, that is all the inspiration I can hope for.

What do you think are the major issues when it comes to equality for women?

Operating on a united front that is inclusive and intersectional is often times a difficulty when it comes to equality...

How do you define a strong and courageous woman?

I think a strong and courageous woman defines those attributes for herself...


Jenny Jin
Senior Beauty Editor at PureWow
West Village

Jenny is refreshingly real, especially when this isn’t the norm in the beauty space. It takes courage to allow yourself to fully be seen.

Jenny Jin is a New Orleans native living in New York. After a brief career in nonprofit and finance, Jenny decided that writing about beauty would be way more fun. She came to her current role, Senior Beauty Editor...


What's your definition of beauty?

It's more of a feeling or an aura than anything physical. The best way I can describe it...

When did you start to feel confident with who you are?

To be completely honest, it's something that I'm constantly working on...

Having the courage to be vulnerable in relationships is hugely important, but hard to do. How do you push your fears and hesitations to be open and vulnerable?

I've never really had trouble opening up in my close relationships. In fact, I'm such an open book that I sometimes...


Leslie Green
Social Media Manager at SELF Magazine
Financial District

Leslie’s authentic demeanor and her “realness” approach to her life and wellness is so refreshing. This attitude can sometimes be hard to find, especially within the wellness space. She’s a rejuvenating source of light and inspiration as she helps women redefine wellness, health, and strength.

Leslie Green is an award-winning social media strategist, graphic designer, and content...


How do you define wellness and how does it play into today's standards of beauty and health?

Well is definitely the new wealthy these days, but that comes with a lot of conflicting...

You're so authentically you! How do you stir up the courage to be vulnerable to let yourself be seen?

The majority of my followers are people who already know me IRL...

What's an example of when you pushed past fears and embraced the unknown or a challenge you didn't think you could face?

Traveling alone to Hawaii and completing...


Meika Hollender
Co-founder Sustain Author of #GetOnTop
West Village

Meika has a fierce passion for females owning their sexuality and being confident in who they are. Education is the first step to helping women feel more confident, comfortable and empowered to take control of their sexual health, and Meika is doing just that.

Meika Hollender is the Co-Founder and CEO at Sustain Natural, the leading brand of all natural, vagina-friendly products. She is also the creator of GetOnTop...


What’s been the biggest issue or challenge that really tested you? How did you pull through it bravely?

Transitioning into becoming Sustain's CEO...

Sexuality, vaginas, and periods can make people uncomfortable, but it is so important to educate and talk about the subject. How did you get comfortable leading awareness about these topics?

Listen, without controversy, nothing changes...

What was more difficult writing a book or starting your own company? Why?

Definitely starting Sustain! The book was a beautiful and natural extension...


Priya Malani
Founding partner Stash Wealth Millennial Money Expert

Priya is using her wisdom to mentor and provide actionable advice to millennials for financial success. She gives them full control of their financial future through actionable knowledge and tools, that no one else has been able to provide.

Priya Malani is an entrepreneur and founder of Stash Wealth, a financial planning and investment management firm for H.E.N.R.Y.s™ [High Earners, Not Rich Yet]...


What was the inspiration behind Stash Wealth?

There are many sources of inspiration behind the brand. But the main inspiration was to bring the level of handholding that's available...

How do you stay focused and centered when things don't always go as planned?

Growing up in an immigrant household as a first generation American, I was taught...

What's an example of when you pushed past fears and embraced the unknown or a challenge you didn't think you could face?

Starting this business was a series of pushing through fears and embracing the unknown...


Sophia Roe
Beauty/Wellness Advocate and Empowerment Architect
Bushwick, Brooklyn

Sophia Roe is a wildly passionate chef, wellness expert, empowerment architect, and beauty bandit whose candid videos and posts on health and mindfulness light up social media. She approaches wellness from a tolerant and holistic attitude. Her methods incorporate healthy lump sums of great nutrition and culinary information...


What gets you out of bed in the morning?

I don’t have a rosy background. In fact, my childhood was an absolute nightmare...

What’s been the biggest issue or challenge that really tested you? How did you pull through it bravely?

I’ve had so many challenges, in so many different areas of my life...

How do you balance drive and ambition with gratitude and being happy with where you are at?

I actually truly don’t struggle with this at all. I don’t believe in “rushing.” Social media...


Shahana Hanif
Activist and Advocate for Chronic Illnesses and Muslim Acceptance
Kensington, Brooklyn

Shahana is inspiring others through her courageous advocacy and her willingness to leverage her platform to create awareness around both chronic illnesses and the Muslim religion.

Shahana is a community organizer...


You're so raw and real with your health struggles, how do you remain strong and positive when times get hard?

I remember how far I’ve come, I affirm my survival. I’m committed to life...

How has it shaped the way you see and define what wellness means to you?

I respect my body and feed it what it needs for nourishment. I believe in joy...

How has your community around you made you stronger?

Checking me, holding me accountable, and teaching me when I needed it.


Shanika Hillocks
Content Strategist and Freelance Writer  

Shanika is shaking up the wine and spirit sector, where women are a still outnumbered. Her authentic vulnerability and courageous spirit is leading the way for other women to follow her lead and break molds of representation.

Shanika Hillocks is a NYC-based content strategist and freelance writer specializing in the food and beverage alcohol spaces....


What's been one of your biggest challenges that you've courageously pushed past?

Navigating the wine and spirits space as a woman of color is a daily challenge due to the sheer lack of representation...

How do you practice self-love?

An easy and simple practice I like to implement is burning some sage or smudging palo santo...

How do you best express yourself and let yourself be truly seen by others?

I practice kindness, say "good morning," smile and aim to be genuinely interested in someone when conversing...


Shanna Tyler
Founder of Self Soul Sport
Jersey City, NJ

Shanna has courageous embraced and accepted herself for who she is- the good and the bad parts. She is teaching other women to do the same. It’s a hard thing to accept but with a little self-love and appreciation, Shanna teaches how to boldly move towards a better version of ourselves.

Shanna Tyler is a yoga teacher, lifestyle/fitness blogger on, and life coach for entrepreneurial women...


What was your inspiration behind founding Self Soul Sport?

Me. I was inspired by my own experience of struggling with mental health and needing real life connections with other women...

What's a moment when you bravely faced a fear and pushed past it?

Being my own boss. Hands down. I had so many obstacles to push past...

Since founding Self Soul Sport, how has it impacted your definition and/or view of wellness?

It’s showed me the importance of community. Having the right people...