Women to Watch

DANA WENDT

EMPOWERING GIRLS
By Shelby Deering

DANA WENDT WAS NOT A CONFIDENT TEENAGER. Inspired by her own experiences and her teenage daughter, Hadley, she says, “I don’t want any girl to feel like I did growing up.” That’s why in 2012, Wendt started Jougze, a company that will soon launch snack bars and protein shakes for teen girls online and throughout the Midwest. Jougze, which Wendt says is a synonym for self-confidence, was founded to remind girls that they can do “anything and everything.” Disillusioned by snack bar choices for women, Wendt says, “Food (companies) really have a responsibility to clean up negative messages, and not just talk at teen girls, but to listen.” She hopes that her company’s mission to give girls an inner voice that says, ‘I can do this. I’m going to get back up over and over and over again,’ will have a positive impact. Wendt believes that anything can happen if you put your mind to it—and that’s the message she wants out there for girls. “If I can start a food company out of thin air with an interior design degree, you can do this,” she says to teens—whatever your “this” may be.

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