Skip to main content

Female empowerment is something we’re deeply passionate about. We are proud to be a female-led organization, with Tina Kozak and Tina Sullivan recently moving into the CEO and president/COO roles (respectively) and Tina Kozak serving as Franco’s first female CEO. Also, our team is more than 75% women, including some of the smartest and most inspiring women in metro Detroit!

In celebration of International Women’s Day, we wanted to honor and acknowledge the women who inspire us every day! Here they are:

My Sister

I always say my sister is the greatest gift my parents ever gave me. She’s been challenging me and inspiring me since she came into my life when I was two. Today, she inspires me because of her resilience, kindness and determination. She’s always there for the ones she loves, but she remembers to take care of herself and doesn’t apologize for who she is. – Tina Kozak

Brené Brown

I soak up every piece of content Brené creates because it’s full of incredible wisdom! Her research on authentic leadership and wholeheartedness in organizations has inspired me to focus more on my own emotional intelligence and how that applies to my work at Franco. She’s encouraged me to show more empathy and vulnerability in all aspects of my life. – Nikki Little

My Daughters

My daughters – Miranda and Juliana – inspire me. They are both very different and driven in their own ways. Teaching them to be strong, independent women who travel their own path and find happiness doing it is what keeps me going. – Tina Sullivan

Grandma Stella

Grandma Stella lived to the grand old age of 103, which I realize not everyone is fortunate enough to have their grandmother’s guidance and wisdom for that length of time. She demonstrated strength, perseverance and grit while teaching me independence, kindness and understanding. In my eyes, Grandma Stella is the OG and founding member of the Strong A** Women’s Club. – Andrea Kenski

Whitney Simmons

Whitney is a preacher of self-love, living a healthy lifestyle and that every day is a beautiful day to be alive. She gives inspiration to go after your dreams, something she’s fully embodied and achieved – now the owner of multiple companies and an all-around boss babe. Her positive self-talk and authenticity has encouraged me to adapt healthy living, both mentally and physically. – Rachel Burnard

Stacey Abrams

2021 represents a forward journey to change, and while there are so many women paving the way, I am inspired most by Stacey Abrams. Her approach to leadership demonstrates an even balance between passion and power, and she encourages me to continue learning and pushing for progress wherever that may be. – Catherine Pace

Kamala Harris

I’m not sure what is more inspiring than seeing a woman in the White House for the first time in history! The election of Vice President Harris is a defining moment for women in history and a milestone that makes me so hopeful for the future. What inspires me most about Vice President Harris is she gracefully demands the respect that she knows she deserves. Her presence in the White House serves as a constant reminder of what women are capable of. – Emily Hebert

Dolly Parton

Dolly inspires me because she’s honest with herself and marches to the beat of her own drum. She has a genuine love of mankind and it shows in her lyrics, her choice of words and her activism/charitable contributions. She’s gracefully played into and flipped just about every joke that’s ever been made about her, and I think that’s beautiful. – Kaiti Horn

Eugenia Kruczek

My grandmother was an incredibly strong woman. She escaped from Poland during World War II and immigrated to America to start a new life. She continued to show perseverance throughout her life in each role she played – wife, mother and grandmother. I will always look up to her and strive every day to be as great as she was. – Joelle Kruczek

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC)

AOC is fearless. She is an idea starter, a force of change and someone I look up to for always fighting for change no matter what the norms are in politics. She is helping create the shift we need to make the world a better place. – Mallary Becker

Laura Jane Grace

Laura Jane Grace is brave. After 10 years on stage as the front person for a high-profile punk band, her transition was in the public eye. Despite this pressure, she chose to become her authentic self and is now an advocate for trans women’s rights. Her courage, honesty and grace inspire me because life’s too short to live the way others want you to. – Tracy Wolf

Rose Tokatlian

Rose is my friend, mentor and former boss. She is one of the smartest and strongest women I know. She helped me strengthen my skills at the beginning of my career and continues to coach me professionally and personally to this day! – Megan Bonelli

Dorothy Hernandez

When I say Dorothy is the reason I’m doing what I do today, I mean it literally. As my former editor, Dorothy pushed me to continuously grow as a writer, a creator and as a person. Her tenacity and ability to constantly seek out new adventures and challenges instilled in me a work ethic that I carry today. I am endlessly grateful to call her my mentor and friend. – Lexi Trimpe

Can’t forget about all the inspiring mamas!

My mom is kind, loving and incredibly giving. She raised my brother and me to be strong and independent. As I reflect on my relationship with her, I know she has always given me the courage to speak my mind, to shoot for my dreams no matter how lofty and to always put my best foot forward. – Ann Marie Fortunate

She is the strongest, most caring and selfless person I know. She raised her daughters to be independent and encouraged them to carve better lives for themselves by fighting through all odds. She is my guiding light, my strongest pillar of strength and the most inspiring person who gave me the confidence and courage to sail through everything in life, good and bad. She is my best friend and I would consider myself lucky if I am half as gracious and compassionate as her. – Neekita Singla

I am incredibly inspired by women who have successful careers while never sacrificing family. That is my mom. Four kids, 41 years of marriage, a career change, then helping build two businesses with my dad, and never once did I look around and she was not there. I love her constant reminder that if I want something, I need to work hard and earn it. – Lauren Connor

My mom is the most empathetic and selfless person I know. She raised me and my siblings to be kind to others and never judge a book by its cover. She has dedicated her life to taking care of others and is proof hard work pays off. As I prepare for motherhood, I think back to the many moments in my childhood, and to be honest, well into my adult years; times where all I needed was her to tell me to relax and see the bigger picture. I hope to pass along this same calmness and reassurance to my son in the future. – Ashley Dupuy Mancuso

She hasn’t been dealt the greatest cards in life, but she has accepted them and persevered. My mom is a strong, confident and determined woman who takes on any challenge thrown her way. I hope to become as much of a reflection of who she is on the inside as I am on the outside. – Samantha Meyer

If you’re looking for an extra dose of girl power this International Women’s Day (or any day) we highly suggest taking a listen to our empowering playlist.

We want to hear how you’re celebrating International Women’s Day. Tell us on social (Facebook / Twitter / LinkedIn / Instagram)!