2015 was a tough year but not for these Des Moines locals. For these ten men and woman, it was a year of kicking ass and taking names. From photographers and business owners to beauties and go-getters, here are the top ten most influential trendsetters you should follow in 2016.
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Major photo shoot with Meredith Corporation, advancing to the main stylist at work and finally starting working out again!
I never leave my house without my… Phone, Fitbit, and eyebrow pencil.
In 2016 I look forward to... Advancing my skills as a hairstylist and learning as many new things as possible. I also want to continue advancing my fitness.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Having my son.
In 10 years I’ll be… Hopefully married, with another kid and be a homeowner.
My tech gadget of choice is… My Fitbit!
My best piece of advice is… Always stay true to yourself and you can achieve anything.
Occupation: Graphic Designer | Photographer
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Officially launching my freelance photography and design business!
I never leave my house without my… Chapstick.
In 2016 I look forward to… Lots of exciting trips and travels with my husband and our friends.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Hiking St. Lucia's tallest Piton with my husband on our honeymoon - it was really challenging but amazing!
In 10 years I’ll be… (hopefully) a mom
My tech gadget of choice is… iPhone
My best piece of advice is… Find a healthy balance of things that make you happy and constantly challenge yourself. Be nice, work hard and don't worry about the rest.
Occupation: owner/manager of Fugitive Apparel Co.
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Celebrating the anniversary of our 1st year in business.
I never leave the house without my… My backpack containing my laptop and notebook.
In 2016 I look forward to… Continuing to expand not only our line of products but also expanding the amount of other brands and items that we carry. We also have collaborations with other designers in the works that I am very excited about.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… skydiving with my family
In ten years I’ll be… Continuing to develop and expand the Fugitive brand as well as develop some others.
My tech gadget of choice is… Macbook Pro
My best piece of advice is… “If you think you can, or think you can’t, either way you are right.” - Henry Ford
Occupation: Marketing Creative Strategist at OPN Architects, and freelance writer and editor
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Spending my time and money on traveling rather than material items. I made it a point to plan many trips throughout the year, and to spend my money on experiences rather than things. My list for 2016 just keeps growing.
I never leave my house without my… Water bottle.
In 2016 I look forward to… Working toward bringing my business plan to life. Stay tuned, Sherman Hill.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Listening to the call to prayer as I stood between the Hagia Sofia and Blue Mosque. Istanbul is a gorgeous city with a beautiful culture (and delicious ice cream to boot).
In 10 years I’ll be… Still (happily) wondering what I want to do with my life.
My tech gadget of choice is… My Audio-technica over-the-ear headphones. They block out all the noise.
My best piece of advice is… Never stop learning. Push yourself to try new things, learn new skills, read new books, put the technology away and have real conversations with people.
Occupation: Freelance Photographer
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Assisting over 25 weddings all over the U.S, photography and videography.
I never leave my house without my… my camera because you never know what opportunity might arise.
In 2016 I look forward to… Meeting new people, growing my photography business, sharing my passion with others and traveling.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Road tripped with fellow photographers all over the west coast last summer. Witnessed places I'll never forget.
In 10 years I’ll be… A very successful person with my photography business, doing something I love. Capturing special moments in people's lives.
My tech gadget of choice is… iPhone 6
My best piece of advice is… Live as if It were impossible to fail.
Occupation: CEO of ishgirl.co Photography/Design Studio
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Building my design studio & establishing Des Moines Fashion Week.
I never leave the house without my… Smile.
In 2016 I look forward to… Events leading up to DSM Fashion week such as Go Blog Social coming to Des Moines in August!
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Find the man of my dreams.
In 10 years I’ll be… Happy, as I am now.
My tech gadget of choice is… My camera!
My best piece of advice is… Never give up & and be kind to people.
Occupation: Associate Financial Planner
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was…Having our 2nd child, Finch (and keeping him alive).
I never leave the house without my… Wallet
In 2016 I look forward to… Creating memories as a family of four.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… Seeing the sunshine at midnight in Iceland.
In 10 years I’ll be… the dad of a teenage daughter... AHHH!
My tech gadget of choice is… iPhone
My best piece of advice is… Failing to plan is planning to fail. (I heard it first from my HS guidance counselor and it's always stuck).
Occupation: Owner of Preservation
My biggest accomplishment of 2015 was... Opening Preservation.
I never leave the house without my... Hopefully my keys...but some days...
In 2016 I look forward to... Traveling and meeting new people and continuing to collaborate with the insanely talented team of people that inspire me and keep me going every day!
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was... Toss up... Being present for my niece's birth... and rescuing my two pups Arlo and Remy. Oh, and actively pursing my dream!
In 10 years I’ll be…Ten years older...and wiser...hopefully.
My tech gadget of choice is… iPhone...doesn't it do everything?
My best piece of advice is... Borrowed advise "Be Congruent. Be Authentic. Be your true Self " -Gandhi
Occupation: Currently I am the Managing Director of Public Affairs for LPCA Public Strategies. In 2016, I will be opening my first restaurant and lounge called Bubba – Southern Comforts.
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Signing a lease on the restaurant space was my biggest accomplishment. My partners and I have worked for over a year to find the right space, so it was gratifying to finalize the deal. We will lease 5,300 square feet on the ground floor of The Clemens Building at 10th & Mulberry. It is a portion of the space formerly occupied by Raccoon River Brewing Company.
I never leave the house without my… Diet Dr. Pepper.
In 2016 I look forward to.. I’m looking forward to opening Bubba and spreading the love of Southern Cuisine throughout Central Iowa. We are also very excited to offer a significant lounge component to the space where people can enjoy a bourbon, or craft cocktail. In addition to the main dining areas, Bubba will feature approximately 40 upholstered lounge seats that evoke that southern vibe — think tufted leather couches and wingback chairs with nail head details. We not only want to be a great place to eat, but stylish place to grab a drink.
The coolest thing I’ve ever done was… I was fortunate to visit Israel in July with a delegation from Iowa and New Hampshire as a part of AIPAC’s American-Israel Education Foundation. The experience was life changing. It is a beautiful, yet complicated place that drives home the fact that there are two sides to every story.
In 10 years I’ll be… Hopefully, I will still be pursuing my two loves: public relations and hospitality. Whether that is growing the Bubba brand, creating new concepts, or helping clients with their efforts, I definitely see myself in Des Moines.
My tech gadget of choice is… I’m not a techy person. Most days, I consider it a “win” if I can get my email to sync with my iPhone.
My best piece of advice is… If you aren’t a techy person, make sure to pick a spouse who is.
Occupation: Health Coach, Speaker, Model, Healthcare Entrepreneur and Aspiring Author
My biggest accomplishment in 2015 was… Joined a healthcare non profit - the Clinical Health Coach - and finished the FURD (first ugly rough draft) of my first book, The Art of Health Hacking and sent it to my editor! The book will serve as a self-coaching tool that helps health conscious consumers become “health hackers”… so they navigate behavior change in an empowering, sustainable way and reach the optimal, holistic health they truly desire.
I never leave the house without my… LAUGH, which for me starts with a smile and stands for: Love, Acceptance, Understanding, Gratitude, and Hope…for what the day has to offer.
In 2016 I look forward to…
1. Leading the inaugural “30 Before 30 Mastermind”, a group transformation program dedicated to supporting 20-something men and women with the accountability and structure to accomplish 30 BIG THINGS before they turn 30 years old. 10 personal goals, 10 professional goals, and 10 philanthropic goals.
2. Scaling the Clinical Health Coach, which is a health coach training organization focused on training patient facing health professionals across the country as behavior change specialists.
3. Leading workshops as a founding Ambassador with the MENtour™ Team. The MENtour™ is a national male teen empowerment tour focused on holding workshops (“manshops”) to support male youth at schools across the country.
4. Launching my book, The Art of Health Hacking, at the exact same age my dad wrote “Check The Oil”, his first book on antique gas and oil station memorabilia. He was my inspiration in more ways than one.
5. Buying a dog from the Animal Rescue League. (It’s on my personal “30 Before 30” List…)
6. Collaborating with more health leaders and organizations in the Greater Des Moines area to create more personal health educational and experiential community events (Fat For Thought, Bone Broth Bash, Authentic Relating, etc.)
The coolest thing I’ve ever done: I was once carried out on a “surfboard” type platform in front of 70,000+ people in Kinnick Stadium while I was dressed up like Big Bird. (Yea, you do the math…)
In 10 years I’ll be… Wherever and whatever God calls me to be. Maybe married with kids in a nice home and white picket fence. (But if I want that my mom says I need to start with a girlfriend….) Or maybe I’ll be receiving my first Oscar on some red carpet in California. (Deep down I have a dream to be an actor…)
My tech gadget of choice is… The Inner Balance App and Sensor by Heart Math. This product helps you achieve a stronger level of coherence, which is the synchronization between the breath, the heart, and the brain. Using this clever tool leads to greater emotional stability, improved mental clarity and a more peaceful physical state. You can start to learn how powerful the connection between your thoughts, your focus and your breath really are, and pretty soon you can become a Jedi warrior of managing your fight or flight response.
My best piece of advice is… Eat more real food and less sugar. Drink more water (and Bulletproof Coffee). Move your body. Have fun doing what you love. You are more than your looks and more than your “failures”. Don’t underestimate the power to create, do or become anything you want to. And perhaps most importantly…don’t take yourself and your life so seriously. You only get one life on this earth- make sure you have some fun and enjoy the ride.