Skip to main content

Women Entreprenuers – Talk Magazine Feature

“Can I bring you coffee?”

It was a simple, sincere pitch that started a momentous journey for Leah Stoudenmire, Founder and CEO of The Rock It! Co.

Stoudenmire learned entrepreneurship from her mother, a stay-at-home mom who made dolls and clothes to earn extra money, and determination from her father, who lost his sight due to illness but returned to a career in education in which he excelled.

“That’s where some of this all comes from,” Stoudenmire says.

“This” is persistent positivity and the desire to engage people in joy and kindness. It’s the foundation of what Stoudenmire does with The Rock It! Co., where marketing and events meet boundless enthusiasm.

After graduation from the University of South Carolina, Stoudenmire started a career in advertising in Greenville, later moving to work in luxury real estate sales and marketing that allowed her to live all over the world. A layoff forced a reset and a new direction. The result was Coast Apparel, which Stoudenmire co-founded. After four years in that venture, she was ready to return to the corporate world, where she started melding events with marketing. When she decided to step out on her own, it was a business born of her passion for good.

Stoudenmire reached out to a company leader who needed help with events, asking to meet for coffee and make a pitch for her newcompany to fill that role.  

“I could build my own company core values, my own mission and my company, and build a career that really aligns with my beliefs and how I want teams to run and how I want to lead,” she says. “My goal was to lift people up and to be a leader who is positive – and to rock it,” she says. “No matter what you are doing, you can rock this. That’s what we say every meeting – we’re going to rock it – we get the team and partner

s excited that they can rock whatever they’re facing in business and in life.”

Stoudenmire leads by example, bringing positivity to organizations she supports, like KIND of the Upstate, and Fearfully and Wonderfully Made.

“KIND of the Upstate truly encompasses my beliefs,” she says. “Everyone should be kind, and I don’t think anyone can disagree with that. KIND of the Upstate focuses on being inclusive to all people who have special abilities. It’s really awareness and education.”

As The Rock It! Co. enters its 10th year, Stoudenmire says her goals have changed slightly, “from the grit and grind and keeping a roof over the head” to helping the next generation look ahead, understanding that marketing and social media is ever present for them and helping them focus on what aligns with their own positive core values.

For would be entrepreneurs who are figuring out the next step, Stoudenmire offers encouragement.

“Your I’s don’t have to be dotted and your Ts don’t necessarily have to be crossed,” she says. “If you have that dream and that desire in your heart, just create that mindset. You take the action, become resourceful. Relationships matter. Never burn a bridge, because you’re going to cross that bridge 100 times and you didn’t even realize you would. And with that and the right support, the right team and the right community, you can do it. You just have to believe in yourself. I just want people to know that they can do that. Start small. You don’t have to have a lot of money in the bank. I started with zero.”

Full Article at Talk Greenville