On behalf of Ollin Women International, congratulations to these 13 amazing Women in Business!
Lisa Anderson is the owner of Lisa Anderson Media, a media company she founded in 2020 with a focus on magazine publications. We know her best for LOCALA MAGAZINE launched in June of 2021 One of her proudest accomplishments is publishing the anthology “Shameless: 15 Women Share Their Journey of Self-Awareness, Self-Love, and Leading with Light,” released in July 2022. And the Shameless Summit: Leading with Light Live on Stage. With a passion for storytelling and sharing personal narratives, her company’s tagline is fittingly Connections Through Stories. In addition to publishing, Lisa is also an author and podcast host. She hails from Wisconsin and moved to Ocala in 2009 where she now resides with her significant other and their two dogs.
Julie Duncan launched Jewelz Entertainment and Balloon Design in 2011 at 21 years of age. Knowing that she wanted to be both an attentive mother and still contribute to society, she decided entrepreneurship was the way to go. A business administration major in college provided the educational foundation to achieve that goal. Beginning with a face painting business, she expanded her entertainment services to include balloon twisting and balloon decorating. Today she has a team of six. Her goal – to provide a collaborative, flexible, and fun work environment where her staff feels supported and free to express themselves creating an environment encouraging excellent customer service and such beautiful creations as you see here today.
Amy Keel is the owner of the award-winning GOT SCHWAG. Promotional Marketing, offering Graphic Design, Print, Web, and Promotional Marketing solutions for small businesses for the past 20+ years. She has an extensive background in print production management, brand development, and web design. Amy is also the owner and operating partner with her mother in Augusta’s Way, LLC, an all-natural soap.
company. Born and raised in NY, Amy relocated to Sarasota in 1990 to study Fine Art at the Ringling School of Art and Design, completing her secondary degree in Drafting & Design Technology before moving to Marion County in 1999 following her marriage to husband Rick…Together they have four children. She serves on the Advisory Council for The Ora Clubhouse, is a past VP of BNI Strategic Allies, is a member of the Ocala Metro Chamber and Economic Partnership, and works closely with the Ocala Marion County Centers for Domestic Violence – her charity of choice. Her strong passion for herbal healing, and soapmaking, will find her enjoying the outdoors and in her garden.
Dr. O’Brien has been a lover of animals their beauty and innocence since she was a little girl. Her dreams of becoming a veterinarian in order to help and speak for animals came true when she graduated from Louisiana State University in 2007. She purchased Maricamp Animal Hospital in 2012 to create an environment that always advocated for the animals no matter what the situation. Her passions for pets echo her passion for her family. married to Dr. Alberto Rullan and they have two boys that are learning to love animals as much as their parents. Dr. Katie is also passionate about giving back to her community in her advocacy for children experiencing trauma and abuse and freeing people from the constraints of drug abuse.
Renee Williams, a fifth-degree black belt in Tang Soo Do, is the owner of The Martial Arts Center in Ocala, founded in 2007. A single Mom to two daughters, Renee has grown her start-up by employing nine certified instructors with a current clientele in excess of 250 students ranging in age from toddlers to those in their 50s…She has recently partnered as co-founder of a Cross Fit studio in SW Ocala. In an article in the Star-Banner in 2018 the “Martial Arts Mom” was quoted as saying that “being an entrepreneur is like playing with Legos as an adult, you just move the pieces around and see what you can build, what you can make grow.”
Arceli Encienzo Nona Scientific is originally from Cebu, Philippines …she holds a BA in Medical Technology and came to the US in 1994 achieving not only FL certification but national certification in the field of Clinical Laboratory Sciences. With her life partner, Jerondio Encienzo, a fellow clinical scientist, they began their careers at various FL medical institutions. In 2017, as co-owner, she successfully launched Nona Scientific, an innovative toxicology laboratory utilizing state-of-the-art technology to provide its clients with the most accurate results available. The state of FL made Nona Scientific a center for testing during the Covid global pandemic. Arceli is passionate about the malnourished children in her home country and here locally and is an avid supporter/volunteer of Champions for Champions.
Nilam Patel is a Clinical Esthetician and the owner and founder of Nirvana Medical Spa. She graduated from the Electrology and Beauty Institute of Orlando. Nilam’s passion and dedication to her chosen profession are evident in the wonderful clientele she has built. She attained advanced certification through continuing education in med spa technology and treatments with special emphasis on educating clients in anti-aging practices for optimal results and true dermal repair. When not working, Nilam enjoys playing games with her kids, working out, traveling, and cooking.
Patti Moring McQueen, Chef, and Owner of La Casella Catering was born in Michigan but has resided in FL since the age of 19. After graduating from UF with a degree in English and Communications, she has had a lifelong passion for food and cooking, and post-graduation began what became a 15-year management career with Waffle. After the franchise sold, she moved to Ocala with her former husband and her two daughters. She ultimately secured the catering and food services franchise for the College of Central FL which she successfully managed for 8 years. A much-needed break/vacation to Italy following the end of her marriage gave rise to La Casella…which she successfully launched in 2019…The next few years of COVID, new catering opportunities via the Ocala Hilton, acquisition of Woodlea Gardens catering upon the retirement of long-time owner Martha Jane Davis…and especially meeting and ultimately marrying her husband Tully McQueen…brings us full circle to today…and the fullness of life’s experiences and dreams in LaCasella Catering.
Abbey Slaven is a lifelong equestrian and avid entrepreneur. While enrolling full-time to earn her Bachelor’s Degree in Business and Entrepreneurship, she started her first business at the age of 17. After 10 years of running an equine boarding and training facility that specialized in producing show jumpers, she sold the business to focus on other areas of growth. While still actively training and competing with her jumper and four, once-wild mustangs, Abbey now owns and operates four different businesses:
- JB Golf Carts with her fiancé Jared
- Vougeot (vu – joe) Media – a digital marketing company specializing in content creation.
- C-Watch Corp – a tech platform for verifying contractors’ credentials.
- A Quality Pool Service of Central FL – a full-service company offering pool service, repairs, and custom construction in partnership with her parents.
Her passion for starting businesses and empowering other entrepreneurs to work alongside her to grow and develop each business is evident.
Lola Gonzalez founded Accurate Background Check, Inc. in 1999 after leaving the Social Work industry which she served and loved for over 15 years. Lola and her family moved to Ocala in 1997 from South FL. She is proud of her Cuban American heritage, she was instrumental in the founding of the Hispanic Business Council and has done features on Ocala’s historic cigar-making hub of the early 1900s Marti City. Lola made worldwide news in 2010 for an unprecedented business decision. At the height of the recession and its recovery, she realized that for her business to survive, employee layoffs would be required. After consulting with family and trusted advisors, she decided that that person would be her…She returned to her former passion – social work – and managed her business from afar until such time as the economic recovery was sufficient to resume the ownership reigns once more. She is currently actively involved on the Board of the Heart of FL Health Center.
Since October of 2018, Jennifer Hunt Murty has owned and operated Magnolia Media Company, publisher of Ocala Style, an award-winning monthly community lifestyle magazine currently in its 24th year. In July 2020, in response to the community’s need for substantive local news journalism, she created a daily digital, weekly print newspaper, the Ocala Gazette. Finding herself short-handed in terms of reporting staff, Jennifer used the experience she had gained writing for Ocala Style and sourced stories herself, utilizing the investigative, research, and critical thinking skills she acquired during her over 17-year career as a paralegal. Jennifer’s extracurricular passions are centered around the arts and all things culinary. In 2016, she co-founded the five-day Ocala Culinary Festival that brought national and international culinary talent to Ocala.
Angie Lewis is the founder/owner of Angie Lewis State Farm Agency. Angie grew up in Southern Illinois earning her BA in Education from Southern Illinois Univ-Carbondale…prior to her move to Ocala in 2005, she followed her dream of becoming a primary educator and later independent education consultant for the Illinois State Board of Education…Since opening her agency in early 2006, Angie along with her dedicated team, have given back to the clients and community they serve through their time and numerous community initiatives – especially in the arts and her lifelong passion – education. Angie is a respected leader, speaker, and mentor in creative strategies to help people manage the risks of everyday life. Angie is a current board member/past Chair of the Ocala Metro CEP. She and her husband of 34 years Clint share two adult children Jake and Alexis.
Elisha Lopez is a highly energetic professional Real Estate Broker and the owner of Realty World in Ocala, FL, recognized as among the Top 10 Brokerages in Marion County for the last 10 years. Well-known and acknowledged for her passionate work ethic, humble persona, ambitious and goal-driven nature as well as a competitive, focused, proactive, and unparalleled approach to real estate business, Elisha has over 23 years of experience in the industry with 12 of them as a Broker. She is the founder of the ORW School of Real Estate with her husband and business partner, Luis. Her career accomplishments reflect Elisha’s passionate mission to serve, lead and inspire others to thrive and have a positive life experience through their chosen real estate profession. Her many accolades include the recent cover article in Excelon Magazine entitled “Transformational Leaders in Real Estate.”