Young Americans Blog

Meet the 2016 YouthBiz Stars

Jack Bonneau, Jack’s Stands & Marketplaces
Age 6-11 Category Winner

jack-at-nasdaq-1Jack Bonneau (10) reinvented the lemonade stand as Founder and CEO of Jack’s Marketplaces and Stands. Jack was just eight years old when his Dad suggested opening a lemonade stand to pay for the Lego Death Star Jack begged for.  Figuring it would take too long just selling lemonade on his street, Jack opened up his first stand at the local farmer’s market and ended the summer with a $900 profit.

With a plan to expand the business to more famers markets the next year, Jack realized he would need help.  “Franchising” to other aspiring entrepreneurs was the perfect solution. “I wanted to offer this great experience to other kids so they could learn about entrepreneurship, business, financial literacy, while having fun and making some money.” Jack provided the set-up, complete with insurance and fees, and trained a succession of young “owners” to run the stands and share in the day’s profits.

The newest twist for Jack’s lemonade stands is the addition of a “Marketplace”– space for other young business owners to sell their products at each stand.  As his business continues to grow, Jack has plans to advance youth entrepreneurship clear across the country.

Learn more about Jack in his video.

 

Kayla Wolins, Cards for Caring
Age 12-15 Category Winner

kaylawolins2Kayla Wolins (15) has been taking photos of nature since she was old enough to hold a camera.  According to her mother, Michelle, “Growing up in Evergreen, there weren’t a lot of neighborhood children, so we’d give Kayla a disposable camera to keep her occupied.”  Today, her photographs could be in National Geographic.

Kayla combined her love of photography and a passion for non-profits that serve animals by establishing her own non-profit business, Cards for Caring when she was 12.  Her stunning outdoor photographs, packaged in card sets such as “Offbeat Owls” and “Whispering Water,” sell briskly and all the profits benefit the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keensburg, Colorado.

Her growing business raised $1,700 for the animals in its first year. By 2015 she was able to donate $7,000.  “I always wanted to volunteer for the sanctuary, but I am too young and I live too far away. Cards for Caring is a way for me to help a cause that I feel very passionate about.”

Kayla’s long-term goals include using her cards to create awareness. “I really hope to change people’s minds—cards could help tell people about prison reform or mental health issues” too.

Learn more about Kayla in her video.

 

Hannah Isenhart, Hanimals Greeting Cards
Age 16-21 Category Winner

hannahHannah Isenhart (17) has been running her Hanimals business for over a decade!  She photographed her first stuffed animal “in its natural habitat” when she was five, and sold her first photography cards at a small event a year later.  Today, her cards are for sale at retail stores in Boulder, the YouthBiz Marketplace and online.

The success of Hanimals inspired Hannah to expand her business to “younger kids since they will learn useful skills while having fun at the same time.”  Hannah leads “Hanimals Kids” camps and workshops in Boulder and in Africa, teaching photography and business skills.

As Hannah transitions to college, she is training a young entrepreneur to manage Hannimals, “I want to still be involved and keep my vision alive,” and “I also want to help someone else grow.”

Hannah donates a third of her profits to charity. In addition to growing a business, she is a violist with the Boulder Youth Symphony and an elite soccer player recruited by Division III schools.

Learn more about Hannah in her video.

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