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Phoenix’s Rising Stars

The heart of our mission at VoyagePhoenix 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 the Greater Phoenix area’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 inspiring stories from Phoenix and surrounding areas below.

Paige Keats

I love my furbabies to pieces! I love channeling my creativity through art. I started Peeping Pets after I made one for each of my Golden girls, Bella and Zoey. After I hung them up in our home, family and friends asked if I could make one for their pet(s). They became such a hit, I decided to spread this joy to the masses and start my company – Peeping Pets!. Read more>>

Deliana Brown

William and Leslie Chester

Out West General Store is a true old-fashioned general store nestled on the far west side of Phoenix looking towards the White Tank Mountains, in a community that remains a County island in Waddell, Arizona. It started with a family photo album that contained pictures of Bill’s great grandmother’s store in Wyoming. Those images shaped Bill’s dream of one day owning a true, old-fashioned general store. Prior to building the store, Bill worked for his dad as a mechanic for over 30 yrs. Leslie Chester worked in the corporate world for over 25 years. The vision started to become a reality when Bill and Leslie purchased two-plus acres of commercial land on the corner of Cotton Lane and Glendale Avenue and began building his dream back in 1997.  Read more>>

Angela McCurren

Throughout my life, I felt called to conform – to meet societal expectations. Fear and insecurities drove my actions and the desire to prove myself shaped my pursuits. Over the last few years, I was given the opportunity to reunite with myself, as if being reacquainted with an old friend, from whom I’d grown distant. With that said, it took time to see it all as an opportunity, as initially, it only felt like an explosion. Three short years ago, I was married to a man I’d been with for 14 years – the entirety of my adult life. That came crashing down in December 2017, when he left unexpectedly. Scared, lost and with no idea how to make ends meet, I took to the desert and mountains. I had to find myself and discover who I was without him. I was new to hiking and had never camped solo, much less backpacked. Yet, I found freedom in each adventure, proving myself capable. Strong. Brave. Confident. Read more>>

Meredith Blake

I started in trailers in rural (VERY rural) Tennessee. Now I own a holistic salon studio in Downtown Phoenix, MYTH Salon. I teach color and cutting classes in LA, San Fran, Palm Springs and now, virtually. The journey from trailers to teaching was not an easy one. In that time, I had two babies, lost my mother two days before my 22nd birthday, and filed for divorce. The work it took to get here is indescribable. But there was no other choice. There never was. When you have a vision for your life in your head, you must work to create it in your reality. Read more>>

Marki Nichols

I’ve always liked baking shows, especially ones involving cakes and cookies. A little over a year ago, I started watching cookie decorating videos on Instagram and fell in love! I’ve always enjoyed crafty and artsy things and thought to myself. I bet I could do this! I endlessly searched for ways to learn and found a place in Gilbert that did classes similar to those paint and wine classes. I IMMEDIATELY fell in love and I kind of had a knack for it. After that, I practiced for weeks and weeks, giving cookies to friends, bringing them to birthdays and events. I received a lot of positive feedback and questions about when I was going to start my own business. Then quarantine hit and I thought WHY NOT. Read more>>

Brittny King

I was one of the “happy” people. Everyone said so. I was even voted Miss Positivity in school but all I felt like was a fraud. The truth was, I felt alone. It’s like watching yourself be something you know you aren’t, and that voice inside is screaming at you to reach out and tell the truth, but you ignore it and keep pushing on. I learned very early on how to “stuff it.” This is a pattern I repeated constantly. The mean girl I have inside me believed I didn’t deserve true happiness, the kind that comes from loving oneself completely, and I believed her. I didn’t love myself, so I didn’t believe anyone else could really love me either. Read more>>

Baylee Reed

I picked up a camera for the first time back in April 2020 for a TikTok challenge that my little sister made me do! That TikTok ended up going viral and we hit one million views within 12 hours, now it’s at 3.7 million, which is crazy, so I kind of got a kickstart on the app and made me realize that maybe I was good at taking photos. I spent the whole summer of 2020 doing TikTok photography challenges for fun and ended up getting inquiries for paid shoots from clients and I started taking clients in August of 2020. It’s been crazy busy and I get a lot of seniors that found me through social media or my sister’s social media and started booking seniors for grad photos and now averaging around 6-8 senior shoots a week. Read more>>

Chelsea Love

To begin, I am a natural talker, Motivational Speaker, Blogger, communicator, and conversationalist – keeping this brief will be difficult 🙂 but I will try. Please feel free to reach out if you would like me to further expound in any area. Born in Sarasota, FL – small segregated town, the 3rd of 4 girls, brought up in a traditional southern middle-class family. I struggled with my identity growing up as I was sometimes referred to as “Nyree & Shayla’s little sister” (Those are the names of my older two sisters). Driven and independent at a young age, I figured out that I wanted a name for myself and began to seek opportunities that would allow me to stand out. Read more>>

Divya Yoder

I am a lover of and advocate for all-natural products. As a mother to two young boys, I wanted a natural health product to help cure common ailments but was unable to find one locally that was palatable and effective in boosting immunity. I was already disheartened by the general overuse of antibiotics in this country and became further wearied by the prevalence of artificial and impure products on the market. After doing my own research, I decided to challenge myself by creating my own recipe to have a real hand in providing a healthy remedy for my family. Leaning heavily on the ancient and time-tested medicinal remedies from my native India, I created a salubrious blend using pure ingredients, such as Ceylon cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and local raw honey. In addition to being powerfully curative, both of my boys love the taste of our elderberry products. Now, not only have these products made a huge impact on our entire family but our local community as well. Read more>>

Tonya Sakowicz

I have known, for as long as I can remember, that I wanted to work with children as an adult. I started babysitting at 11 (this is when I took care of my first newborn) and although I pursued both elementary education and pre-med in college with the intention of being a pediatrician, I ultimately found my calling in the nanny world. I had my first live-in nanny job at 19 while in college and my first newborn live-in nanny job immediately after college. I never looked back. I am, by nature, curious – a researcher. And so I was continually researching about the ages and development of the children I worked with. Approximately 20 years ago, I moved to Phoenix to work with a set of newborn triplets and their family. A few months into the job, I met the man who is now my husband and business partner. He was fascinated with what I did, working with families with new babies and helping them adapt and thrive. I worked with several other families also, including the Masche Sextuplets (born in Phoenix!), got married and had two children of my own. Through it all, I was teaching and the popularity of what I was doing was growing. Read more>>

Zachary Hughes

I got into woodworking simply because it was something I enjoyed doing. It started as an at-home hobby, and over time has turned into something more. We started with our own projects – furniture for us and diy projects around the house but after some time, we decided that we wanted to try and turn it into something more than just a hobby. Read more>>

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