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Portraits of the Valley

It’s more important to understand someone than to judge them. We think the first step to understanding someone is asking them the fundamental questions about who they are and how they became the person they are today. Understanding and empathy are essential building blocks for a better, more compassionate world. We’re incredibly fortunate to be able to ask these questions each week through our interview series. Below you’ll find inspiring interviews from in and around the Valley.

Daniela Provatakis

I started my education in 2010 and have since traveled to many parts of the country to continue my education in order to put together a unique style of work that benefits all clientele. Read more>>

Genie Rose De Guzman

When I gave birth to my daughter, Sophie, I just thought, I want to be a hands-on mom. I want to be with her every step of the way. I want to see her milestones and I don’t want to miss anything. Read more>>

Sierra Mckie

My life is a joke, so I’ve always told it. It started out as little Snapchat stories about how men are trash lol. My friends would laugh and call me bitter. Maybe I was. But I also spoke from experience, not speculation, so people appreciate the perspective. Read more>>

Nawal Bengholam

I was born and grew up in Casablanca, Morocco… the land of spices, tagines, and opinionated women (laughs). My parents were both biologists and, when we weren’t all pretzeled up into a mountain of group cuddles (we’re big mushy huggers in my family). Read more>>

Cole and Kelsea Moscatel

We both grew up as neighbors in Redlands, California. Our mothers were best friends, so naturally we were childhood friends. Later on as we grew up, we developed a deeper relationship with each other and ultimately fell in love. Read more>>

Saray D. Guidetti

Storytelling and entertaining is written in my DNA and I explored it through various art forms as I was growing up. When I was a kid, I would create skits and dance routines with friends to entertain the family. In middle school. Read more>>

Andrew Weaver

I was in the entertainment industry for roughly 20 years until I decided to become an entrepreneur. My first business was a men’s luxury footwear line. One day, I realized that just focusing on profit wasn’t what it was cracked up to be, so I became a Social Entrepreneur. Read more>>

Johnny Ray

From Detroit MI, I journeyed to LA around 2009, pursuing creative dreams like everyone else in this town. I had the blue collar work ethic mentality from the midwest but didn’t understand the system of LA yet. Read more>>

Scott Trimble

I am a Hollywood location scout on such franchises as Star Wars, Star Trek, Marvel, DC, Transformers, Terminator, Fast & Furious, Jurassic Park, Planet of the Apes, Mission: Impossible, and many more. Read more>>

Teresa Lo

I was born and raised in Coffeyville, Kansas. It had about 10,000 people and was most famous for The Dalton Gang and an annual fair and rodeo. It was both a country and blue-collar town, and there I was. Read more>>

Arrington Fleming

A young creative from Prince George’s County, Maryland decided to pack up a car on October 26th, 2017 and drive across the country for five days to fulfill his dreams to build the most impactful fashion house. Read more>>

Brian Ngendo

I started as a master of ceremony in an African club where I use to get a chance to hype up the Dj once in a while. This got me to admire a Dj’s work that I used to observe every day, I made my way to that booth. Read more>>

La Mer (Meredith Barko)

I am a Los Angeles native born and raised in the valley. I spent my teen years in Topanga Canyon and grew up in the theater alongside a family in the entertainment business, so much of my formative years were spent on sets + stages. Read more>>

Dr. Danielle Delaney

I was a dancer on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand in Philadelphia from 1959 – 1961. It is currently known as America’s First Reality Show. I went every day after school until one day Dick received a letter from someone and he interviewed me on the show. Read more>>

EJ Neri

Upon graduating at Hamden High School Class of 2015 in Hamden, CT I was not sure what I wanted to do with my life. At the beginning of my senior year (2014), I tried to establish myself as a Model on the east coast. Read more>>

Pavel Kozlov

I am originally from Moscow, Russia. I grew up in a family of Math professors and nobody thought that I would want to become a professional fighter. I loved super heroes, action movies, different mixed martial arts when I was a kid. Read more>>

Jermaine Mcgee

I started working towards my goals at a young age. As a kid, I started drawing on walls and I wondered why I was so fascinated. My grandmother got me art supplies one day, since then, I’ve continued to pursue my dreams as a professional artist. Read more>>


Maliah’s vibrant signature sound is effortless. Organic creative progress was a natural state for her, and freedom to explore her talents were encouraged. Like a true old soul every time she reached for a mic, she surprised onlookers with a classic jazz voice packed into a tiny hummingbird of a girl. Read more>>

Reegan Haynes

I love to dance and I always wanted to be a Choreographer. In fact, I was so young that, I didn’t know at the time I could have a career “making up dance routines.” I wanted to be it before I knew the title was Choreographer. I also wanted to make a positive impact in people’s. Read more>>

Maame-Ekua Mensah

My father was had enlisted in the Marine Corps, so not too long after, I was born my family began moving. I moved all around the world, as the song says literally from LA to Tokyo. I was a military brat as most tend to call us. Read more>>

Laura Alemán

I started when I was three with ballet classes. Later at five, I started participating in theater variety shows were my mom used to sing. I used to act, dance and sing in them as the little girl of the company. Read more>>

Amanda Lovelady

It all started when my father purchased a guitar for me as a graduation gift. Ever since then, I have really struggled with exploring my creative side when it comes to my music. Now more than ever, do I feel like I am truly on the right track. Read more>>

Naela Durrani

My father is from Pakistan and came to the states in the 1970s where he met my mom, who is from small-town Portland Indiana. Within three months, they were engaged and I have looked at their friendship as inspiring. Read more>>

Spencer Frankeberger

When I was younger, I wanted to be a theme park engineer, but I had the trifecta: I was terrible at physics, math, and definitely couldn’t draw, so that was certainly out of the question. However, at a young age, I discovered my fascination with movies. Read more>>

Brittney Powell

I was born in Germany to an army officer and stay at home mom. The best parents ever, I globe-trotted for a while with my family before I moved on my own to Los Angeles at the age of 19, leaving my family in Texas. Within six months, I started booking work as an actress. Read more>>

Landi Maduro

My intrigue for photography began, like most, when I was a kid. My father was a photographer as a supplement to his career as an art teacher. I would stare at the candid photos he took of my mother and hung in our garage, which was his makeshift studio. Read more>>

Jalise Johnson

I always loved the kitchen. I always told myself I would start a business in the food industry of some sort that allowed me to spend more time in the kitchen. Creating different meal ideas is very therapeutic for me. In addition to having a passion for cooking. Read more>>

Austin Pope

The story starts in Burbank, California. Born and raised. My mom put the ball in my hands when I was three and I’ve been deeply in love ever since. Growing up in Burbank were not known for athletics, were the movie capital of the world. Most kids in bigger cities had great teams and leagues. Read more>>

Raymond Gerard Braza

Ever since I witnessed my grandfather and uncle record our family road trips back in the early 2000s, I knew I had to do the same. Though I was very little and had no knowledge of what any video camera devices were. Read more>>

Marissa, Jesse, Anjelica, and Ides Bergen

They decide to form a family band with their unwitting children. Enter The CheeseBergens comprised of Ides Bergen, father and drummer, Marissa Bergen, mother and bassist, Jesse Bergen, son and singer/lead guitarist, and Anjelica Bergen, daughter and singer/guitarist. Read more>>

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