AUTHORS & ENTREPRENEURS
Shailaja "Shai" Venkatsubramanyan grew up in Mumbai, India in a middle-class household. She started keeping a diary in her teens. One fun entry in the diary made its way to India's national newspaper - The Times of India - when she was 18 years old. After getting her Ph.D. in Information Systems from the University of Arizona, she taught at Tulane University and San Jose State University and worked for three years at a Knowledge Management startup. During this time, most of her writing involved research papers related to information systems. More recently, she has started maintaining a blog on Linkedin. Having taught for many years and been a mother to two children, she tries to extract lessons from her life journey and pass them on to those who may benefit from it via writing. She has presented on KQED's Perspective segment a couple of times and has also published in online magazines such as India Currents. Shai considers herself to be a lifelong learner. She is passionate about writing, yoga, cooking, animal rights, and being a mother to her two children.
Leimamo KanaeholoEditorial Staff
Leimamo is a writer who manages her own blog and website. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Literature and Writing Studies at California State University, San Marcos. She joined the Editorial team at GREY Journal and helps with the distribution of newsletters and writes weekly articles about business news, motivational tips & tricks, and other fun topics! As a passionate, driven, and growing writer, she hopes to use her love for writing and sharing stories as a journalist.
Debra is an entrepreneur, and creator, producer, and host of the award-winning podcast, The Great Fail, a true crime-inspired business show that explores some of the most iconic failures in corporate history. The Great Fail is internationally recognized and has reached the Top 10 Charts for “Entrepreneurship” and “Business” categories worldwide, The show has been featured in Forbes, ABC News, Podcast Magazine, Digital Hollywood and recently won Adweek’s 2020 Podcast of the Year awards.
Sr. Client & Community Specialist at AeroPay, one of Chicago's top startups. That means he is the go-to for the companies clients around the country, as well as a liaison for communities around Chicago, organizing events that are meant to educate business owners about the best ways to receive payments. A veteran of the startup and corporate world, he loves to collaborate and be creative about how to serve his clients and community.
As Editor in Chief for GREY Journal, David has covered a diverse range of entrepreneurial stories—from accomplished Silicon Valley investors to rising startup founders. He holds a BFA in digital filmmaking and has spent years honing his skills as a screenwriter, producer, and author. Currently, he has one published book, The Streetfighter Journals, and is working on releasing a collection of short stories and a tabletop RPG adventure.
Jody Taylor is a retired women's professional football player and former Media Relations Director for the Women's Professional Football League. After hanging up her cleats in 2010 she officially launched her own San Diego based Public Relations, Media, and Marketing firm, Sixty5 Media named after the jersey number she wore her entire football career and where her french bulldog, Brooklyn interns. The 2019 Nicky Award winner for Outstanding Businesswoman, Jody has worked with national media outlets and everyone from entrepreneurs to entertainers . She has served as a guest columnist in three different national publications and is currently a co-host on the radio show, Notes From the Underground on KNSJ 89.1 FM in San Diego which also streams worldwide.
Currently, a senior working toward degrees in Journalism and Acting at Azusa Pacific University (a small school in SoCal), reading and telling stories has been something I’ve treasured since I was a kid (I was the girl who preferred reading Magic Treehouse over running around a playground if you catch my drift). I guess that explains where I am now: working as a freelance writer at Houstonia, a local magazine in Houston, Texas where I was born and raised, a student writer for my university’s student-run online blog and magazine, and now as an editorial intern hoping on to the GREY journal team. When I’m not typing away, I love reading an entire book in a single sitting (nothing has changed since the playground), listening to True Crime podcasts, or spending too much money on iced coffee.
Staff writer at discoverGREY covering topics that matters to our audience with insightful and easy to read content.
John Victoria is the Founder and Owner of Polianna (polianna.net), a boutique SEO agency founded in 2016. His company specializes in helping HVAC & Plumbing businesses drive more phone calls, leads, and sales through Google search.
Tony Bonilla is a marketing analyst, who enjoys writing and playing guitar. In addition to working as an analyst and writer, he hosts his own podcast. He currently resides in Southern California and is an avid baseball and soccer fan.
Graduated from Columbia College Chicago, Marcus is a motivated entrepreneur who writes for motivated entrepreneurs. He enjoys analyzing films and writing screenplays in his free time.
Kirk Navarro, a graduate from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, history buff, and writer. When not working for GREY Journal, likes to work on personal manuscripts, draw, read, and collect swords.
Mike is a programmer in the medical software industry with nearly two decades of experience. For just about as long, Mike has also been an on-and-off again freelance writer. Having found his passion in writing, and when time permits, he aspires to be a published novel writer.
Armen is the CEO of AMVCreative, a production company specializing in Video, Web and Graphic Design. He started the company in 2010 after six years in the ad agency world, with the entrepreneurial desire to build his own valuable client relationships under strong moral guidance. A passionate artist, writer, director, traveler and musician, Armen is also a former Division I collegiate soccer player and Olympic athlete in the winter sport of skeleton. This athletic “alter ego” has shaped his business today, valuing discipline, teamwork and desire to always achieve at the highest level.
Abby SiatkowskiEditorial Staff
After receiving a Bachelor’s in English from The Ohio University, Abby joined the #GREYGang as an editorial assistant. She aids with daily editorial assignments and social media outreach. She loves being apart of a team that Hustles as hard as she does.
Marketing leader with a proven track record of delivering growth through clear, focused strategies in Digital Strategy, Integrated Marketing and Advertising. He focuses on Business to Business and Business to Consumer marketing and advertising campaigns that drive new customer acquisition. He has traveled internationally for the last few years while working remotely.
Alex is a part-time student, part-time marketer, copywriter and blogger with his own start-up business. He believes that everyone has a responsibility to be constantly improving, and writes in Grey Journal to share his advice, contribute to your knowledge, and motivate you to aspire for more. Enjoy.
Nick has been a published writer for the past twenty years for many entertainment magazines and newspapers. He was the editor of the niche magazine Mob Candy Magazine for seven years. Nick has also appeared on the mob documentary “Mafia Killers w. Colin McLaren” on the cable channel REELZ. His knowledge of the underworld is extensive and not only for his research but because he knew many of these individuals growing up. He has published three books so far: “Destinies” (a fictional mob story) which was published by Austin Macauley a London / New York based publisher, "Prison Rules" which he co-authored with ex-mobster John Alite, and "Godfathers of the Night, In the Shadow of the Mafia" put out under his company Nick Christophers Ink Corp.
Magdalene is a graduate from the University of Maryland with a B.A. in Literature and Spanish. In her spare time, she rides her bike, reads Forbes, and writes for various DC online publications. Magdalene enjoys the tech world, social media, and taking photographs to post online. She also enjoys writing about Asia and Africa and their economic states. Magdalene is excited to begin working with DiscoverGrey and hopes to learn as much as she can about the Entrepreneurial Universe.
Cedric is a very versatile thinker and writer from New York state. He has spent much of his life on the East coast of the U.S., visiting many of the nation’s prestigious College & University campuses, seeking to create a unique living-learning experience for all college students to enjoy. Cedric enjoys traveling, reading, research, sports, and engaging in intelligence-related activities. Cedric’s vision is to make the Universe a smarter, better place for young people and college students by making education as fun, easy, and innovative as possible!
B. Zachary Bennett is the author of “Married to Marketing, a Relationship Guide to Business” available on Amazon.com and his own bzacharybennett.com. He is also a frequent keynote speaker and marketing personality within the business communications industry with a 25+ year career working in marketing agencies to help build some of the largest brands in the country. He currently owns Reformation Productions, a full-service marketing agency in Atlanta, GA that is focused on helping grow small and regional sized businesses through the use of his own Straight Line Marketing Process™ and a marketing-centric business consulting practice where he offers one-on-one and corporate consultation in addition to interim and outsourced CMO services. You can find his video podcast, Straight Shot marketing podcast, at StraightShot.net, on YouTube, Pandora, Spotify, or wherever you enjoy podcasts.
Nancy is a cannabis and health industry consultant who frequently writes about the latest trends in the industry. She has been writing on Cannabis for a long time now. Through her writing, she hopes to influence as many people as possible to help maintain better health and lifestyle. She has written many informative blogs on other verticals too.
An optimistic creative living in a world full of opportunity. I inspire change, growth, creativity, and strength. With a diverse background working with athletes, musicians, and actors producing content to working with C Level Executives in business development. I’ve had the pleasure of working with The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. Starting companies, failing and succeeding with some, but always gleaning from each experience. Now I share what I've learned with you while I continue my journey in life. My mission is simply to help as many people as I can, which is actually not that simple, but I persevere. I'm just The Usual Smith, trying to do the unusual thing – create, go against the grain, help others, and thrive. Oh, and occasionally I may have a Kanye moment. Connect with me on LinkedIn @jasonsmith85
As a motivated business leader, Casey is a passionate entrepreneur who got his start owning a home service franchise. After nearly a decade, he successfully exited his role with 90+ franchise owners and over 600+ employees. Casey went on to create Cultivate Advisors with his business partner. As the CEO of Cultivate, his team has helped thousands of owners reach their growth objectives through core business skill development and scalable systemization. In 2019, Cultivate ranked #280 on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing companies. The mission of Cultivate Advisors is to partner with committed entrepreneurs in propelling their business beyond expectations.
Adelheid Waumboldt is President of the ISET Agency in Los Angeles, California and a member of the Forbes Business Council. The ultimate connector, her history living in cities throughout the world like Paris, France; Amman, Jordan; and New York, NY while working in sectors from crude oil and precious metals, to fine art, music and film have garnered her a rolodex and reputation like no other. For the last three years, Waumboldt has been a constant in the sphere of journalism - sharing her knowledge and finds from business to lifestyle, culture, and beyond with the world at large.
Nia Tipton is a journalism student finishing up her last year at Columbia College Chicago. She has written for HerCampus, and hopes that after graduating, she can write for more online magazines.
Brock D. Vickers is a writer, actor, and athlete with more than a decade of experience in the entertainment industry both backstage and in front of the camera. In addition to working as an actor and writer, Brock has served as a marketing manager, a journalist, a ghostwriter for the self-help industry, and an on-camera host for various travel shows as well as a bartender and brand specialist for companies such as Glenlivet and Hendricks to Vital Proteins and Four Sigmatic. Every artist is an entrepreneur. From the stories they select and the narrative they craft to their branding and social media use, artists learn quickly the grit required not only to survive but thrive.
Jackie enjoys being outdoors and dislikes being bored. She deems herself an Amateur Wine Connoisseur. On her spare time she co-produces a podcast with her brother.
Harvey L. Frierson Jr. Host of The Ike Jackson Report Podcast and Owner of BX Media LLC a commercial HipHop Music, Film and Television intellectual properties company.
Connor McCrory Is a well-versed social media and entertainment journalist. Based in Los Angeles, Connor's background stems from the social media influencer industry. He served as the co-founder of "Horizon Talent," a social media management company, and now works in Talent Acquisition with Sun & Sky Records
Michelle Kelly is a freelance writer from NYC. Her main focus is holistic health + wellness and ghostwriting. She’s also an animal activist working towards creating safe environments for all animals.
Francis Maling is an NYC based creative with a background in restaurant hospitality and food service.
Web designer, Researcher, Virtual Assistant and Statistics student. I love learning new things, desire to be independent, passionate about what I do and am driven to deliver great quality work. Currently working with discoverGREY as marketing associate.
Sylvia valdez is a writer and photographer. After graduating with a BA in television, film and media studies, from California State University- Los Angeles, she has participated in the Spirit Awards Festivals. Her working experience includes reporting, photographing and Script Development Reading. She continues to write and photograph while raising awareness about mental health.
Aastha has graduated with a Masters in Luxury Brand Management from Regent’s University London. She has worked with several beauty brands and is passionate about the skincare. Aastha loves to read about upcoming skincare trends and implement the same. She has her personal beauty page on Instagram, for beauty reviews follow @iknoglow.
So as you know I'm Matthew Alicea, I'm 25 and live in Long Beach, CA. I'm a creative individual with a hand in many creative outlets. I play music around town when I get the chance—that was until COVID. I skate daily and surf occasionally, that is when I can save up for another board because my last one broke. Originally from the east coast, specifically Philly, and moved around a lot as a kid so I've become a sort of social chameleon. Anyways, I ended up in Long Beach in 2013 and have been here ever since.
A Creative Writing and Political Science major, Aditi is a junior at Knox College. With a keen interest in journalism and publishing, she has played the role of Editor-in-Chief of her school's newspaper and also interned at the oldest continuously published literary magazine in America. She's also a big history and activism buff and hopes to use her skills for good someday.
Andy Jacob is Founder and CEO of The Jacob Group, bringing more than 20 years of executive experience founding and leading startups and high growth companies. Jacob is a pioneer in the fields of consumer finance, online customer acquisition, and consumer monetization. Jacob has been seen as a guest financial expert on CBS, ABC, NBC, Time Warner, and Bloomberg. Jacob’s companies have also been covered by The Wall Street Journal. Jacob is turning the billion dollar consultation industry upside down with his “one-hour” coaching and consulting practice, focused on startup entrepreneurs and visionaries who are creating innovative companies. Leveraging his experience and strategic abilities, Andy is known for breaking down business problems quickly and efficiently.
Ella Sabin is a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison studying Journalism, Spanish and Environmental Studies. She loves to travel and experience new places and cultures, enjoys reading and spending time outdoors with friends. She is very interested in global communication and globalization.
Amy Hamblen is a New York-based writer who finds it equally important to be willing to fly to find a good bar and to hone the craft of being a good barfly. You can find her on Instagram @AmysThirsty.
Victoria Thomas is a Washington State lawyer and writer who loves to talk —and write—about branding. Her business is in intellectual property law by providing support to clients who need to brand their businesses or their work via trademarks; or who require protection for their intellectual assets through copyrights.— She runs the Omega Inscribe Writing Company, a blogging, book writing and support platform for authors looking for guidance in their trade. When not busy with writing assignments, she spends a lot of her spare time working for the non-profit: The Lion’s Sanctuary Career Matchmaker, an organization helping individuals to discover their destined career paths. During leisure time, she loves to read and relax on the patio on hot days.
Content writer and fashion designer from New York City. Alumni from the Fashion Institute of Technology. Shortly after her career blossomed in fashion design, she has returned to pursue writing part-time, which was her first-time love. She likes to write about women of color, race, lifestyle, fashion, entrepreneurship, and mental wellness.
Alex is a marketing and sales leader that has spent his career working in different capacities at startups. He has spent the majority of that time focusing on payments, technology, B2B SaaS, and SMBs. He thrives on finding creative solutions to problems and helping bring new products to market.
Anson Wu is a successful entrepreneur with a proven track record in building engaging brands across industries. A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, he first learned and practiced creative thinking as an architect. After graduation, Anson spent almost 10 years building a successful millennial marketing agency to help brands engage with younger consumers through digital media. Anson is a frequent speaker on the topic of digital marketing and entrepreneurship and he lives in the greater Chicagoland area.
Elizabeth Hazard is a photo director, producer and writer with several years of experience producing content for magazines, websites, brands and artists. A published author, she frequently writes about fashion, art and cultural topics for websites and publications.
Clinton Harris is an Entrepreneur, Best-selling Author, Life Progression Expert and Keynote Speaker. Working in organizational leadership, educational institutions, with families and the military, he has served to help people all over the world for over a decade. Clinton’s Life Coaching company, public speaking and books have now reached a global audience.
Anna is a young writer with a degree in journalism. She is a Chicago native and has a great love for travel, cooking and reading. Through her writing, Anna seeks to tell unique stories and create avenues for voices that may otherwise go unheard.
Chris Forson is a very young writer and entrepreneur who cares deeply about the hustle of trying to become an entrepreneur. He hopes in the future to live in a world where his entrepreneurial dream comes true.
Emma Hempstead is a graduating senior from Smith College in Massachusetts. She likes to write about literature, health, and cross-cultural connection. She is interested in how our rapidly globalizing world necessitates language, media, and storytelling as vehicles for communication and learning.
As a man who has been given a platform to reach my fellow human, my happiness is acquired through creating a source of knowledge that will incessantly engender happiness.
David is a digital nomad who loves to share what he knows about entrepreneurship. In the last couple of years, David has been developing multiple internet businesses while staying in Indonesia. He loves blogging, sunbathing, and traveling to remote countries.
Joseph Gerdine-Knighten, hails from Texas (although he’d prefer New York). He’s worked in the health and fitness industry since 2014 where he’s done work ranging from; personal training, managing gyms, as well as working in the supplement industry. Apart from working out with his free time, he enjoys traveling, drinking wine, reading, writing, and spending time with his loved ones.
I'm a seasoned professional, with over 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur. Over the course of my career I have owned 3 companies. In that time, I have some stories of things that went really well. Then some where things worked… not so well. I am currently consulting with business owners on how to avoid the pitfalls and other things that could send them and their operations in the wrong direction. Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn http://bit.ly/connect_with_lenny
Throughout the direct sales industry there was many companies Tony had worked for since age 16. Unfortunately, the companies he worked for did not share the same ethics and morals as he did. The young, ambitious twenty-one-year-old walked away from his job and knowing he could create something better! Tony has years of working with different marketing companies as well as in finances. Aspiring to become a successful entrepreneur, influencer to many people, and be free from the employee mindset. With his complimenting background, he created Pinnacle Status LLC, a Social Media Marketing Agency.
Cathyrn Eta is a freelance editor, writer and indie published author. She currently owns and operates Ikori’s ASW Editing Services, an editing company. She hopes to one day become a full-time entrepreneur and romance novelist. Cathyrn hasn’t always been fond of writing. That came later in life, in 2017 when she launched her company and wrote her first book, an inspirational book of quotes. This book of quotes helped to heal her mind mentally as she overcame her depression. She would also like to thank her late mother for always encouraging her and being her biggest supporter in her writing. She dedicates all her written pieces to her, Ms. Eta. Currently, Cathyrn works at a temp agency, while caring for her father and continues to build her writing portfolio.
Jordan Upton is currently an HR Generalist in Los Angeles, CA. He has been a College Ministry Director, a baker with Bouchon Beverly Hills, an entrepreneur and a long time musician. With a thirst for writing, he contributes to Gearphoria Magazine and gigs all over the LA area. He’s a husband of 9 years, an avid runner, reader, and car fixer. This Texas native never settles and is always learning something new.
Johnny M. DeCarlo is a lifelong New Jersey professional who has owned and operated a successful food and beverage business, and is a researcher / writer of other entrepreneurial ventures. Garnering a large social media following as a blogger and popular entertainment figure, appearing on TV and radio with a perspective on a variety of subjects including not only the culinary and cultural aspects of his background in Italian-Americana, but transcending all matters of the modern man. With extensive knowledge on music, movies, politics, sports, fashion, health and wellness, any interesting areas surrounding topics of today and those of the past worth examining.
Marsha Rogers is the Member Services Director for Evolution Accelerator where she mentors startups on search engine optimization and growth hacking tactics. After serving in the US Army, she graduated with her Master's in Human Resource Management and found her next passion teaching business technology at local community colleges. Marsha enjoys spending time outside of the office rescuing hound dogs and giving back to the veteran community.
My name is James. I live in Denver, Colorado and am an entrepreneur! I’ve owned several companies, ranging from a music production company to bicycle manufacturing. My specialty nowadays is in photography, blogging, etc. I created this website as a way to teach people about financial education and help everyone grow. My autobiography will be released soon! Join the community HERE to find out when it’s released! If you have any questions or want me to write a blog on a certain subject, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’m a seeker. I seek for adventures, new experiences, reputation, friendships, discovery, above all I seek for hope. More importantly, I’m a writer. I write more than I say.
Alex H Stone and his cat Jeff live in Minneapolis, MN. Alex H Stone has an MFA in Creative Writing. In his free time he enjoys taking pictures and sneaking into places he shouldn’t sneak into—but don’t tell anyone. For more Ask Jeff’s Dad, visit us on the web at www.askjeffsdad.com
Eric Gasa is a freelance writer from St. Louis, Mo. His main focus is on music journalism, political news, and cultural criticism. He has an A.A. in creative writing and has interviewed everyone from MMA fighters to the guy who brought you the Pitch Perfect soundtrack.
Wes Speight (stylized as Sp8), an independent artist, has played many of the venues of hometowns Nashville and Seattle, toured 13 states, Europe and Canada. Speight has released 8 studio albums and several singles since 2008, on indie labels and self-released. Speight's music genres range from singer-songwriter Americana to gritty blues rock. Speight's other passions include being a good father and husband, filmmaking, exercising, and awkward comedy.
I am a U.S. citizen who lives in Houston, Texas. I graduated from the University of Houston-Downtown with a Bachelor’s Degree in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences/Technical Communication. Throughout my time at UHD, I have had experience in writing in plain language, proofreading documents, and conducting usability tests for professional websites.
Jonathan Loppnow is an avid outdoorsman, martial artist, and beer lover. Writing has been a passion of his for years. He grew up in California and now lives in Portland, Oregon.
The author of Thirst No More: A Fable of Hope and Forgiveness and Ready for Your Love and Other Poems, Kwami Nyamidie is an award-winning poet and freelance writer. He holds a Master of Arts in Transforming Spirituality from Seattle University. A U.S. citizen, Kwami lives in the Pacific Northwest where he’s currently working on a nonfiction book about mothers.
Marion Solon is the founder and creative director of Philippine based womenswear label and design agency, MS-FDS.
Aisha K. Staggers is a writer of culture, politics, music and Prince. She is the featured weekly guest on The Dr Vibe Show's "Staggers' State of Things," as a political analyst and social commentator. Aisha is the creator and co-host of the internationally syndicated "All Our Own Show," a weekly talk program for Generation X Women of Color. She is the creator of the "Soul Since '74" blog on Medium and will launch the syndicated blog and podcast series, "For Colored Girls," this spring.
Christine Cassen grew up near Orlando, Florida. She is currently a college student studying finance at UCF. She loves reading, writing, and nature.
Madeleine Hettich is a graphic designer, writer, illustrator, and comic book artist. After graduating with a BFA degree (with an emphasis in Visual Communications Design) from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she worked as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer before being hired by GREY. She continues to develop independent illustration and comics projects in her own time. This background gives her a unique perspective when writing about any number of topics.
Jackie Sloane, Master Certified Coach, is a seasoned executive coach and consultant, specializing in enhancing ability to achieve greater well-being and significant results through how clients position themselves, engage others, communicate, cultivate relationships, and lead key initiatives. Jackie has over 25 years’ experience in executive coaching, leadership development, communication and organizational engagement consulting. Clients report significant results for themselves, their teams and organizations. They report becoming better leaders; greater ease in engaging the commitment and enthusiasm of others; in having conversations that result in transforming situations, as well as greater influence one-on-one and across organizations.Before becoming a coach, Jackie founded a marketing communications services firm that specialized in positioning, and grew visibility and sales for professional services, retail, consumer products, business-to-business and not-for-profit organizations. Her background includes serving on the staff of a national magazine and creating programs that resulted in significant sales increases, key contracts, favorable acquisitions and offers of acquisitions, top-tier media placements, and other targeted results. She has served leaders at privately-held, nonprofit, public sector and Fortune 300 firms. Jackie has worked with leaders and groups in most industries, including academia, energy, healthcare, financial, manufacturing, professional services, pharmaceutical, medical products, consumer products, sporting goods, publishing, digital, retail, telecommunications, and not-for-profit. She has served clients at Abbott, Accenture, American Society of Anesthesiology, Bank of America, Comcast, Deloitte, Exelon, Grant Thornton, Hollister, Navistar/International Truck and Engine, PepsiCo, Purdue University Northwest and others. Jackie wrote the Executive Coach column for Executive Travel, an American Express Publishing/Time Inc. magazine for five years, and has written for many publications, including Leadership in Action, the Center for Creative Leadership magazine. She has two coach certifications, including Master Certified Coach. She completed the graduate-level Mastering the Art of Professional Coaching in 1994, and many leadership, communication and coach training programs, and is a member of the International Coach Federation. Jackie has a B.A. in political science, and completed graduate work at Columbia College. She is a mentor for Chicago Innovation’s Women’s Co-op.
My name is Shawn Hudson, I'm a 27 year old Bronx native that loves writing. I'm the type of person that's very persistent when I set my sights on a goal. I graduated from Monroe College with a Bachelors degree in Business Management.
A young professional constantly curious about the nitch and tips for men's fashion style and lifestyle. He believes when he has one question in his mind, there are thousands of people have the same question. That is the time he needs to seek the answers for one, also for all.