Yesterday I shared with you how being a small business owner has made a big impact both on me personally and in the life of my family. Growing Vend Raleigh has made one of the biggest impacts in my life and I am grateful for the impact it has made in the lives of so many other women entrepreneurs. Today, I am excited to share how Vend Raleigh is going to continue to grow and continue to make that big impact but with the help of new leadership.
Amber Foster Smith attended her first Vend Raleigh event as a brand new business owner over five years ago. She was looking for community and a place to learn and grow her passion for photography and business. After Amber established her family and wedding photography business she quickly began creating a strong community with other women leading small businesses. Amber successfully opened her first brick and mortar The Studio: A Coworking Space for Creatives in downtown Holly Springs four years ago and launched a mastermind group that multiplied and divided immediately after she launched it. As the years have gone by Amber has continued to grow and combine her passions for photography, small business, and community. 2020 will be a year of big changes as she turns her photography business focus towards branding for small businesses and expanding The Studio into a new space twice as big as its current!
Amber and I have been together in business for several years within the Vend Raleigh community. We’ve partnered on the Vend Raleigh Illuminate committee leadership team and hosted Vend Raleigh’s first styled photoshoot including local wedding vendors. Currently Amber is a leader in the Vend Raleigh Professional Photographers Facebook group promoting engagement and community with 250 local photographers.
Amber has held the role of emcee for the last two Illuminate conferences. While I watched Amber work the room with her positive energy and amazing smile, I knew Amber was the next leader of Vend Raleigh. Every time she approached a business leader with her enthusiasm and microphone, each woman woke up, felt seen, and participated in a brave way. That’s what a Vend Raleigh leader does, approaches women, stands right next to them in their bravery, and encourages them to grow.
I have been considering selling Vend Raleigh for a couple of months in order to pay full attention to my growing nonprofit, Designed For Joy. In perfect timing for both of us, I’m thrilled to announce that Amber Foster Smith is the new owner of this professional group that we love and grew together over the last 9 years.
I’m excited to see how Amber will lead this audience of 3,000 Raleigh area solo entrepreneurs. I’ve heard about Amber’s dreams for Vend Raleigh going into 2020 and I am confident this transition will be beneficial to each of you in networking, education, and profitability.
Founder of Vend Raleigh and forever cheerleader for each and every one of you!