Pursue Your Passions Panelists: Starting a Side Hustle

These women will teach you how to turn your passion into a business and how to sustain it.
Pursue Your Passions

Passions never have to go beyond a hobby or interest but what do you do when you know your passion project is destined to become a business? How do you maintain a full-time gig while also following your personal pursuit? Learn from women who have been there – how they got started and how it’s going.

Get your tickets for the Pursue Your Passions virtual conference on April 23-24 here.


Faith Blackwell, Owner of Faith Blackwell Photography

Faith Blackwell has been a full-time photographer since 2011. While working in marketing for the International Masonry Institute, she picked up a camera and discovered her passion for photography. Photography chose her. 

Faith is a published photographer specializing in business, commercial, event and fashion photography. Faith is the official photographer of Dress for Success Indianapolis and was the 2015 featured artists for Dress for Success Indianapolis Stepping Out In Style, the premier fundraiser for the organization and have been part of art exhibits at Saks 5th Avenue for the past 2 years.  She has a studio at the historic Stutz Building. Faith is also the Event Photographer for Indy Maven, a digital connector for women in central Indiana through captivating and rich storytelling, crazy fun events and an audience of highly engaged badass women.

Inspiration comes in all shapes and forms. Faith is a child of the 80s and uses this in her work and thrives when she is able to be creative. People tend to think of her work as whimsical and smile whenever they view it. Much of her passion projects show this. Faith loves to create works of art that promote female empowerment. Her latest project is Sole Purpose, a podcast/exhibit/book, which will feature not only people in the Indianapolis community but throughout the US.

Three things she’s passionate about

Photography. I am passionate about photography. I love the feeling of making people feel good. I love showing others the beauty that we all see that they don’t see for themselves. Beauty is everywhere.

Time with loved ones. Spending time with friends and family has become highly important to me because we don’t know when the last time we be the last time you see someone. I’ve been good about making time before but now more than ever I make as much time as I can to see people I love and tell them how much they mean to me. 

Being creative. It is my outlet. Whether it’s art, photography, food and drink, I love to create. Because I’m an artist, I get ideas whenever and wherever and sometimes you just have to put an idea to action to see if it could be done. Sometimes it can and other times it leads to greater pieces of work. I love to build on ideas and see what happens. Sometime I enlist my friends to be models. They love it!

Learn more about faith

Follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or check out her website here.

Jessica Hayes Anchor/Reporter, FOX59 & CBS4Indy

Jessica came to FOX59 and CBS4 from WISH-TV in Indianapolis, where she was a morning reporter and fill-in anchor. Prior to that, she worked at the CBS-affiliate in Terre Haute, Ind., as a reporter, anchor and weather forecaster. Before moving to Indiana, Jessica was an assignment editor at the CBS-affiliate in Washington, DC. She’s received awards from the Indiana AP Broadcasters Association, IBA Spectrum Awards and Society of Professional Journalists.

Prior to a career in news, Jessica was a public relations executive in New York City. Within weeks of her move to the Big Apple, Jessica witnessed the September 11 terrorist attacks on lower Manhattan and saw the state of the world change within a mile of her new home. Because of this, she ultimately decided a career in news, reporting on what’s going on around her, would be her future.

Now, she’s happy to once again call the Midwest home and report the news in central Indiana. In her spare time, Jessica often visits family in her hometown of Effingham, Ill. She also likes to challenge herself with a tough workout, long runs in downtown Indianapolis and Bikram Yoga class are her favorites.

She’s traveled around the world and lived all over the country, but Jessica believes her fellow Midwesterners have compelling stories to tell.

Three things she’s passionate about

Health – mental and physical. The past year made me see more than ever before the importance of all around health, for myself and others. Whether it’s taking a walk or Facetiming with family, take time for to check in with yourself. Also, check in with those around you, your loved ones, just say hello to random people. After feeling so disconnected for so long, those minor connections can really be so much bigger than they seem. 

News– The world around us affects us, the good and the bad. Know what’s going on around you. Whether you go to TV, social media, the newspaper or somewhere else, take time every day to know what’s happening in your world. The information is at our fingertips, challenge yourself to keep learning! 

Family – My family and I have always been close, but after being physically distanced for the past year, I appreciate them even more. I cannot overstate how much I’m looking forward to family time this year!

Learn more about jessica

Follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Aisha Rose, Content Creator & Founder of The Strength of SHE

Aisha Rose is a mother, creative, writer, entrepreneur, and marketer. Originally from Gary, Indiana, she moved to Indianapolis almost 11 years ago to attend Butler University.

Aisha Rose has seven years of experience in the marketing industry and now works at a Fortune 500 company. Helping people is at the core of almost everything she does. That is what ignited her creation of The Strength of SHE, a women’s empowerment community that encourages black women to be well, be loved and be you. 

Aisha Rose utilizes her social media platform and blog to highlight and elevate messages of self-care, self-love and self-awareness. She recently published two journals: The Healing Journal, to help people ground themselves in self-discovery through healing, and Reflections and Manifestations Journal, to enable people to see month to month growth and progress in their goals, reflections and manifestations set for the year.

Three things she’s passionate about

Empowering people, especially women, to practice self-awareness because I believe that is where true growth happens

Empowering and educating women, especially moms, about what self-care really means because I believe in order to live fuller happier lives, having this in our daily tool boxes is important. 

Sharing my wellness journey, because not many know how to maintain wellness for themselves and how that impacts all aspects of life and how they’re able to show up for themselves and others

learn more about aisha

Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, or check out her website here. To learn more about The Strength of SHE follow its Facebook and Twitter, or check out the website here.

Jennifer Rubenstein, Co-owner & Publisher of Edible Indy

Jennifer Rubenstein graduated from Tri-State University (now Trine University) with an advertising and marketing degree. She worked for an NBC television affiliate in a senior account manager position, was the vice president of a video and event production company working with fortune 500 companies, and for the last 15 years owned her own marketing and events company. Jennifer has extensive knowledge of branding, creative marketing promotions and strategy, event production and sales. She is a retired board member for the IWIN Foundation and hosts an annual golf outing and other food events for the Edible Indy Foundation of which she is a co-founder and president.

Her passion and hobby is being a foodie and being an activist for understanding the importance of supporting local food and the sustainable food movement. She uses Edible Indy as a resource for education and social justice for food sustainability. Jennifer is married to her husband of 13 years, Jeff Rubenstein and they have two lovely daughters, Wrigley and Mara. They reside near Zionsville, Indiana on three acres and love to be outdoors. Golf, cooking, entertaining, photography, deep sea fishing and giving back are all important to the Rubenstein Family.

Three things she’s passionate about

I am passionate about kindness and gratitude – These are things that will get you far in life. They are free and give back so much to the person whom you gift them.

I am passionate about supporting local – That is the mission of Edible Indy. I walked away from a corporate job in order to provide a platform for telling the stories of these dreamers who have created something out of their passion and that is local. Local money goes so much further. 

Giving back – Since I was tiny, I have given back – I have given money, volunteered and created a foundation for missions that inspire and move me. It can be from teaching kids for free how to cook to providing families with epilepsy with an all expense paid trip to Kentucky for a family camp. It can be taking food and treats to the local animal shelter or using my publication as a platform to share about those who inspire me. Giving back is one of the greatest feelings you can have as a human. 

I can’t forget my family! I am extremely passionate about the love I have for my husband and two beautiful daughters who inspire me to be the best I can be.

learn more about jennifer

Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and check out Edible Indy’s website here.

Hear from these panelists and more on April 23 + 24 at our virtual conference centered around identifying, exploring, and developing your personal passions. Register now to reserve your spot!

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