Veronica Moore is a mother, wife, advocate, entrepreneur and business owner. Originally from Chicago, she moved to the Lehigh Valley in 2007 at a time when there weren’t as many resources for small businesses. She always had the entrepreneur spirit, but didn’t truly realize and take action on her calling until she brought her child into the world. As a woman who experienced her own doubts and low self-esteem from childhood bullying, Moore now works to empower other women and help them follow their passions through her business Alma and Eva. She started Passion and Purpose in Action Women’s Empowerment Summit two years ago to provide workshops, retreats and a safe place for growth and development every June. The idea of FEAR (False Evidence Appearing Real) often limits women’s confidence and abilities, so the summit and business is designed to help women overcome FEAR and be strong and successful.
Moore has been consulting and coaching for years, but in order to directly reach the people she wanted and make a difference in their lives, she had to take the leap and start her own business. She also started another business with her husband doing brewery and a mobile barbeque pit, which she said really opened them up to meeting new people and making connections while serving the Lehigh Valley community. They were able to collaborate with other businesses, and Moore said she realized quickly how welcoming and supportive the community was, especially toward them as the only couple of color. They only had to step out of their comfort zones and try their hand at the business, and they were able to create relationships, develop trust and gain support from others. Hellertown Bakery provides the bread while a local brewery provides stout to use for gravy. Community members come together through good food and good company. Because her husband is a hip hop artist, he is able to bring in artists including poets and musicians to help raise funds for local charities and give back. Moore said they have worked with 6th Street Shelter and Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley. The large amount of small businesses in the area want to see each other succeed, but the most supportive and close-knit is the craft beer industry. The owners and workers are friendly, they all share supplies, and they often collaborate. However, Moore did say the industry is very dominated by white males.
Women still have not achieved full equality, especially in terms of business. Moore said many are being treated differently when being hired on the basis of assumptions and stereotypes because there is still a stigma surrounding traditional women roles. She said some women believe they can only choose one aspect in their lives: career, family, college/education, etc. What’s not talked to women enough is the fact that they have options, and they are able to follow their passions and be successful. Moore stressed that representation matters. Encouraging more people to speak up and advocate for inclusivity is important to bring the community together. People must first and foremost have the desire to acquire different perspectives and to be open to new ideas and changes. The younger generations nowadays especially are shifting the way the world thinks about matters, and it takes people showing up in spaces that are different than themselves and being willing to learn to make real change in society and businesses. Change starts small and locally to eventually grow and reach more and more people, instigating a revolution.