There are many breeds of sharks in the ocean, and the same goes for the business world. One interesting breed of shark we see derives its beginnings from the public sector. These are individuals who serve the public in a service capacity, be it firefighters or US Military veterans. A career of service brings a different mindset to the shark mentality, and it can be traced back to the desire and mission of service in this shark’s entrepreneurial pursuits. After serving 8 years abroad in the US Air Force and returning as a Government Consultant in Washington D.C., Kelly Cooper is a prime example of how this desire to continue service translates into her brand mission.
Kelly Cooper is the founder of Tomato Superstar, an online boutique that encourages girls to live authentically at www.tomatosuperstar.com, operated by Kelly Cooper Designs, LLC. The brand services an altruistic mission where proceeds from each sale go to non-profits combating human trafficking and the marginalization of girls around the world. This mission of service fuels the brands motivations to succeed and gives Kelly a platform to continue her service to others in the private sector.
Kelly is not unlike most of us, as having children dramatically changed the shift of her focus in her career. As a successful Consultant after her military career, success began to take on a different meaning for Kelly. It wasn’t until she had her first child Hannah, and later Josiah, that she would take the full plunge into entrepreneurship. She had a strong desire to create a success that allowed her more flexibility to enjoy time vs money. Kelly knew taking her passion for fashion and combining that with her desire to help others would create a brand that she would be happy to pour her heart into day in and day out.
Success takes on a different feeling at this level of altruistic brand focus. It has heart, it’s complete, and that feeling can often supersede material success. Kelly Cooper is an authentic shark in this respect. She’s balanced fashion with a strong mission while enjoying family and redefining her success. If you ask Kelly about her success, she’ll tell you about the people she’s been able to help, she’ll tell you about her family, and she’ll tell you that it’s possible for you too. She says, “Failing Forward” was her greatest strength against adversity, and a strong mission connected to a desire to continue service has been the recipe for this success story.
Kelly is proof that you can come from a non business background and translate those skills and desires into a career fueled by mission and passion. Her brand Tomato Superstar continues to serve the trafficked and marginalized communities through monetary non-profit donations. Follow Kelly and Tomato Superstar on their mission of good @tomatosuperstar on Instagram. Parenting is hard enough, but starting a business during that time can prove an even bigger challenge. By focusing on the things that mattered most, her children, Kelly Cooper turned Tomato Superstar into a brand that makes the world her kids grow up in a better place.