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Female Entrepreneurs From California Killin' It in the Corporate World
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Female Entrepreneurs From California Killin' It in the Corporate World

Learn about California’s most badass female entrepreneurs who are killing it in the corporate world. Expect to admire and be inspired.

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5 min read

November 11, 2021

Women are smart and fearless—they dream the dream and then put in the work to make it all come true. When women see the chance, they grab it; if they don’t, they create it. All of this is nothing new to us, especially since the Golden State is where many inspiring women have left their mark. Not sure who we’re talking about? Learn about California’s most badass female entrepreneurs who are killing it in the corporate world. 

Top Women Entrepreneurs You Need To Know About

A rebel with a cause, Jazzi McGilbert is the founder and owner of Reparations Club. Photo courtesy of Reparations Club.

Jazzi McGilbert

Jazzi McGilbert is a fierce Black female entrepreneur who founded Reparations Club. The famous L.A.-based creative space is what McGilbert calls a concept bookshop—it’s where ideas, activism, education, and history come to life. To a passer-by, Reparations Club looks like a shop that sells books, records, and various goods, but to people of color in Los Angeles, it’s where they feel the most accepted, inspired, and comfortable.

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McGilbert has always stepped up when the community needed help the most—the woman entrepreneur is happy to transform her bookstore into whatever people need. During protests, for example, Reparations Club becomes busy printing banners. Whenever you’re passing by Victoria Avenue, check out the female-owned business and see how one woman’s grind created a place for a whole community to grow and flourish. 

Justina Blakeney credits her multi-ethnic background and California upbringing for her boho aesthetic. Photo courtesy of Justina Blakeney.

Justina Blakeney

Berkeley-born designer and author Justina Blakeney is one of the top women entrepreneurs you’ll recognize immediately—her designs have been featured in Vogue. Blakeney is all about the boho aesthetic; she owes her unique style to the culturally diverse family she was born into; her das is half African American and half Native American, while her mom is Eastern European of Jewish descent. The designer admits that growing up in California helped add to her exquisite taste, as she watched people of different heritages go about with their daily lives. 

Blakeney’s success story began when she started her design and lifestyle blog Jungalow. Her creative blog posts and successful social media strategy opened doors for fruitful collaborations. Soon enough, she went from blogging to creating a shaggy rug collection with Loloi and a wallpaper collection with Hygge and West. So far, Blakeney’s most famous collaboration was with Moda Operandi as well as Anthropologie. Besides her successful career in design, Blakeney is also a bestselling author—her works include “The New Bohemians: Cool and Collected Homes” and “The New Bohemians: Come Home to Good Vibes.

Founded by Jessica Alba, The Honest Company was valued at US$1 billion as of 2014. Photo courtesy of Jessica Alba.

Jessica Alba

Actress-turned-famous female entrepreneur Jessica Alba is kickin’ butt in the corporate world. From starring in movies like Little Fockers and Fantastic Four to creating clean and sustainable babycare products, Alba shows no signs of slowing down. It all started in 2008 when a pregnant Alba was trying to find reasonably priced, eco-friendly, and all-natural baby products, but came out empty-handed. So, she did what any ambitious woman would do—come up with a solution herself.

Alba founded The Honest Company in 2011, which created non-toxic baby products, limited mainly to diapers and wipes. A decade later, the company has grown into a billion-dollar business selling over 100 products both online and through retailers. The ever-growing line of products now includes vitamins, deodorants, shampoos, and laundry detergents. The Honest Company is not just a business that sells affordable and eco-friendly products; it’s the hard work of a woman determined to make the world a better place. Thanks to women entrepreneurs like Alba, people have a lot of famous female leaders to look up to.

Julia Hartz was selected as one of Fortune magazine's most powerful women entrepreneurs. Photo courtesy of Julia Hartz.

Julia Hartz

From a development executive at MTV and FX Networks to creator of one of the world’s top ticketing and event technology platforms, Julia Hartz is a Santa Cruz-born successful female entrepreneur. Hartz started Eventbrite with her now-husband in 2006 when the company was the first major player in the country’s market. Fast forward to 2021, Eventbrite is one of the top global ticketing and event technology platforms in the world. Not only that, but the company now has a presence in 11 countries including England, Holland, Brazil, Australia, Germany, Spain, and employs more than 1,000 people—talk about taking over the world. 

In addition to selling around eight million tickets per month for a wide range of events worldwide, Eventbrite organizes and promotes events. And Hartz doesn’t just sit behind a desk and enjoy her success; she happily works on empowering women and young adults to establish a career in technology—isn’t she the definition of #WomenEmpoweringWomen?

Growing up in Sacramento, Mahisha Dellinger was exposed to many challenges. Photo courtesy of Mahisha Dellinger.

Mahisha Dellinger

Mahisha Dellinger is the founder of one of California’s top women-owned beauty brands that we just can’t get enough of, CURLS. This woman entrepreneur is the definition of perseverance. Born and raised in Sacramento, Dellinger had a rough upbringing, and unfortunately, life didn’t get easier (just yet). As a young adult, she had to work under a racist manager who made her realize that she didn’t want her destiny to be tied to others. So, Dellinger finally decided to work on making her life-long dream come true.

As a woman of color, Dellinger had always wanted to flaunt her curly hair but could never find effective natural products to help her; therefore, she took matters into her own hands. Dellinger brought together every mixture she’d ever used for her hair and started producing them on a large scale. The products were super effective, made with high-quality ingredients, and worked wonders for every curl pattern. Soon, CURLS went from being a project to becoming a mass production selling nationwide. Inspired by her story? Check out her 2018 program Mind Your Business with Mahisha on OWN and her book “Against All Odds: From the Projects to the Penthouse.”

Jaclyn Johnson is a powerhouse entrepreneur who sold her first business by the time she was 29. Photo courtesy of Jaclyn Johnson.

Jaclyn Johnson

Jaclyn Johnson is a  successful businesswoman and an inspiration to all. The serial entrepreneur, bestselling author, and angel investor is someone to look up to, and here’s why. At the age of 29, Johnson launched and sold her first company, and in the process, she realized there was a lack of conversation, resources, and events bringing millennial female entrepreneurs together. From there, Johnson moved on to establish a multi-million dollar business, Create and Cultivate.

Almost a decade later, Create and Cultivate has become a cult favorite, hosting hundreds of events and establishing a community of more than one million women. In 2020, Johnson sold a majority stake to Corridor Capital, making it her second eight-figure exit before hitting 35. Nowadays, the famous Californian is an advisor to startups, invests in women-owned businesses, and has a successful podcast hosting dozens of celebrity panelists. 

To quote Jaclyn Johnson: “Behind every great woman, are great women.”

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