In September 2018, I walked out of my office at the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation with a box full of photos and reports, precariously clutching a glass planter under my arm. As the elevator doors closed in front of me, I started to cry. Full of excitement about my new career path, nostalgia for the incredible opportunities I had at the foundation, and fear about all the uncertainties that come with entrepreneurship, I was overwhelmed as I took the bravest step in my life. I would wake up the next morning, walk into my sparsely decorated home office, and officially launch Big Big Box, a communications firm I envisioned would transform lives and communities through the power of storytelling.
I woke up today thinking a lot about that morning nearly two years ago. Why? I’ve been recreating my company from the ground up.
Since I launched Big Big Box, I have been honored to help lead some incredible projects. I helped the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation launch AR Equity 2025, the funder’s bold bet that investing in economic, educational, social, ethnic, and racial equity would build a thriving and prosperous Arkansas that benefits all residents. I collaborated with Dr. Joseph Jones, a brilliant political science professor at Philander Smith College, to bring together higher education leaders in Central Arkansas to rethink how we educate male students of color with support from the Executives’ Alliance for Boys and Men of Color (EA) and the Lumina Foundation — part of a national initiative captured in Unlocking Excellence. I also worked tirelessly with Arkansas Counts partners across the state to Get Out the Count in Arkansas for the 2020 U.S. Census because we were committed to bringing billions of dollars to our state over the next decade.
In the past couple years, I have had countless moments when I’ve been humbled and learned. I have to laugh at myself when I remember calling the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center in a panic to ask how to pay myself from my business bank account. I also can’t help but giggle when remembering the first time I told a friend the name of my new business, and she started calling it, “Biggity, biggity, big, boxity, box.” But the most important lesson I’ve learned along my entrepreneurial journey is that while change is constant, success is inevitable as long as you stick to your values, intent, and commitment to growth.
So what’s changed? Today I’m launching Big Big Box’s new brand with a clear statement of purpose: “Stories are the materials we use to craft our world. Big Big Box packages and ships brilliance and imagination, the building blocks for extraordinary organizations, companies, and communities.” To that end, Big Big Box teams up with creative leaders — folks with Big Big Ideas — to imagine what’s possible, craft extraordinary stories, and achieve the goals of the brilliant, passionate people we partner with to build a better world.
As I look to the future, I’m full of enthusiasm. I can’t wait to partner with additional visionary leaders ready to share how they are building a better world. And I’m eager to inspire people through the stories we co-create.