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Inspiring Stories from the OC

The heart of our mission at VoyageLA is to find the amazing souls that breathe life into our city. In the recent weeks we’ve had the privilege to connect with some of Orange County’s finest artists, creatives, entrepreneurs and rabble rousers and we can’t begin to express how impressed we are with our city’s incredibly deep talent pool.  Check out the Orange County’s rising stars below.

Molly Hogan

I founded Trendy Chickadee while working in creative advertising as an outlet for my own creativity! I wanted to shine a light on small, sustainable brands and the stories behind them. I’m in the process of launching Tate + Tiegs, an e-comm site dedicated to working with female artisans in developing countries, so stay tuned for that. Read more>>

Carmen Vera

The best word I can explain with how I got to where I am is simply: experimentation. I never knew what I wanted to do specifically. I am sure I am not alone in this. We have so much pressure on us as teenagers to decide our career for the next 30-40 years when we haven’t even turned 18 yet. What I did know was that I wanted to do something great and wonderful. Read more>>

Jimell Moore

I’m from Grand Rapids, Mi. Been living in Anaheim for a year now, I’m 37 been into music since I can remember started rapping by 5th or 6th grade. My biggest influence was my older cousin Eric he made music, D.J for parties, danced (this is during the late 80’s to early 90’s being I was born in 82), taught me to be open to all platforms of music. Read more>>

Kazeem Salaam

Since the beginning of middle school, I was continuously told that I take really good pictures. It wasn’t until I bought my first camera in high school, that I started to take on the craft of photography. As time progressed my family encouraged me that I should start taking pictures professionally for events, people, etc. By the end of high school. Read more>>

Sarah Lee

Making music was initially just a fun summer activity that I started to keep myself occupied after my senior year of high school was over. A friend that I met online had asked me if I wanted to learn how to make beats, so I decided to try it out just for fun. Read more>>

Michelle Raymundo

As a kid, I tried everything. I danced ballet, played tennis, took piano lessons, wrote stories, played the drums, sang in show choir, and so much more. I still revisit some of these things, but for the most part I’ve left them on the back burner. I didn’t pick up a camera until my mid-twenties and for a while photography was just a casual recreational activity, not a career ambition. Read more>>

Jill Hammond

I had been working at Good Eggs in the Bay Area when Jack and Michelle were looking for help growing their business in Cambria, CA. Their small cheese company, Stepladder Creamery, was starting to make a name for itself across California and they were gearing up for more growth. Read more>>

Steve Aguilar

Our brewery is a family business. My wife, Teryle, and I started planning the venture almost four years ago shortly after we started dating. We met while working at Pandora media. I was working out of the Oakland office and she was in New York. I learned as we dated that she was a serial entrepreneur and was always thinking of new businesses. Read more>>

Brit B.

Beach Candy Swimwear began with my dream that all women deserve to feel extraordinary in a swimsuit! Our unique brand began as a local beachfront boutique in Newport Beach, California. After spending six years in the fitting room listening to women of all shapes, ages, and sizes. Read more>>

Darcie Copeland

It all started with a need to want to help shelter dogs from being euthanized in our local shelters. I didn’t really know how and I didn’t really have a plan. The little I knew about the realities of the rescue world were only the stories of my own dogs. Leroy, a severely abused street dog mama and her single surviving pup, Rebus were living in a trucking yard under a truck when I brought them home. Read more>>

Antonio Velaz

My story begins a little over ten years ago. What started off as admiration for a group called Fatty Koo turned into being appointment Head of their fan club which would later pave the way for other ventures. These ventures and experiences would lead me to work with some very well known clients such as: Tiffany “New York” Pollard, Grammy Winner Mya, Blac Chyna, and a few others. Read more>>

Tyler Nelson

I always had a passion for creating. Throughout middle school, I would always force my friends to star in my mini movies, and lip syncing music videos. Before I got into film making, my first passion was music. I took piano lessons for about seven years, as well as teaching myself how to play different instruments (guitar, ukulele, drums, saxophone) and playing by ear. Read more>>

Alane Adams

I grew up in an old Quaker town called Whittier in Southern California. For college, I attended the University of Southern California where I wanted to be an English major, but my family convinced me to become an accountant so I could help run a family business. I spent the next two decades helping build the family business into one of the largest metals recycling companies in the country. Read more>>

Sam Kendig

Salvage Wear first started out with one jacket, hand painted in my grandma’s kitchen. As I painted, her and I talked about life and shared laughs and made memories. I searched and searched trying to find a jacket to wear to Long Beach PRIDE back in 2018, and when I came to a dead end I realized this was something I could make myself! Little did I know, this was the start of a new adventure. Read more>>

Brianna Gonzalez

I am originally from El Paso, Texas. I moved to California for my undergraduate studies at Concordia University Irvine. I worked both as a Marketing Manager at a brewing company and an Executive Assistant for a medical device company while earning my BBA. After graduation, I decided to stay in California after receiving an offer to work with the sales team for Irvine Company. Read more>>

Naomi Haverland

I started doing chalk art about ten years ago for the Denver Chalk Art Festival as a way to give my paintings more publicity- each year I would reproduce one of my paintings in chalk. But then I started getting more and more chalk art jobs and I ran out of paintings to reproduce so I started creating new compositions just for the chalk. Read more>>

Nicki Bove

I was taking vocal, guitar and piano lessons, and by ten was already writing and recording my own songs. By 17 years old, I was awarded one of the top 10 young singers in the country by MTNA and got accepted to Berklee College of Music on a Vocal Scholarship. I had difficulty at first in Berklee just trying to transition from classical singing back to contemporary. Read more>>

Jessica Gildea

A couple of years ago, I was living in CA while my mom was sick in PA, with an unknown immunity-attacking virus. I felt completely helpless. Fortunately, with time she recovered. She alchemized this weakness into strength, turning her illness into a business and founding ThePureBag, an innovative product line that can prevent others from succumbing to the same fate. Read more>>

Heather Thomas

I have always been fascinated with the human body, movement and physiology from a young age. I grew up playing many sports and was a kinesthetic learner. Always interested in the health-care field and athletics, I was initially drawn to orthopedic surgery and athletic training. Read more>>

Brittany Ciauri

I grew up watching the black and white horror films like Frankenstein and The Wolf Man with my mom, I reread Dracula more times than I care to admit, and I couldn’t get enough of Edgar Allen Poe. I always liked drawing, but I remember being so inspired by the classics and Halloween in general, that something just clicked. Usually sometime around mid-July, my family and I would start preparing elaborate Halloween decorations for our house. Read more>>

1 Comment

  1. Samantha Sands

    June 7, 2019 at 16:45


    I have an inspiring story of a woman winning highest honors within her organization after facing trials and tribulations. Where can I submit this story for review?


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