Meet Wendy E. Diamond, Internationally Renowned Social Impact Entrepreneur, Impact Investor, Humanitarian, animal advocate, best Selling Author, CEO, and Founder of Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Organization. An advisor/Investor in social impact disruptive technologies. She has authored 10 widely celebrated books, garnered three Guinness World Records and has appeared in media outlets including Oprah, NBC’s Today Show, The New York Times, and Forbes. She has also been a featured keynote speaker at the United Nations, Harvard University, and Davos.
Who is Wendy E. Diamond? Define yourself
I was born in Ohio, I am a country- bumpkin at heart, you can take a girl out of the country, but you can´t take the country out of the girl. I live in NYC now, I am a person who loves to help the world, I created the rescue movement in America, I created the first media company by bringing celebrities in the animal rescue world, then in 2013 I realized that 250 millions of girls were living in poverty and nobody was talking about women entrepreneurs so I launched a movement Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Organization and officially proclaimed the day on November 19 as the Women’s Entrepreneurship Day and now we are celebrating it in 144 countries around the world.
What we are doing is empowering, celebrating, and supporting women to become active participants in the economy, because that way they self-confidence and they’re in dignity, they don’t allow human rights violations, and when they earn money, 90% of that money goes to educate their children and provide for their families, I am also a social impact investor helping the most amazing impact entrepreneurs around the world, making this world a better place.
“How do you want to be remembered for? You want to be remembered for having a beautiful outfit, I hope not, I want to be remembered by helping someone and that is the key for success, make a difference in a person`s life”
How were you as a kid?
I played baseball, I played tennis, I rode horses, I did everything but then I got hit by a car when I was 15 years old and that changed my entire life, I wasn´t able to play sports anymore, but I have always been social and a happy person, I`ve always loved entrepreneurship, you know always selling stuff, doing entrepreneurial things at a very young age.
You are the Founder & CEO of Women’s Entrepreneurship) Day (WED), founder, CEO, & CPO Animal Fair Media, TV Personality, Author, 3-time Guinness World Record Holder, and in 2016 Ellis Island Medal of Honor Recipient. What´s the recipe for your success?
I am not really worried about money, fame, or power, it´s about doing things because you are so passionate about it and you keep going because something strives in you bigger than yourself whether knowing that millions of animals have been euthanized a year when I launched animal fair or when I learned that 250 millions of girls were living in poverty, I really experienced both of those by adopting a dog and a cat when I learned about the animal rescue situation in America and by spending time in unprivileged communities seeing these girls living in poverty, seeing the effect by when we do empower women in business how it changes the whole community.
So, in my mind whatever I work on things there is something deeper that is really driving me to make a difference. I must be very creative to figure out how can we make this happen? By amplifying the message, simplifying things so everyone can understand. If you can make the world a better place you have to start from the ground up and able everyone in the world to understand how they can themselves make a difference. Also being humble, as we all know right now with isolation and Covid-19 we are all the same, in the end of the day, let`s say that tomorrow is our last day so how do you want to be remembered for? You want to be remembered for having a beautiful outfit, I hope not, I want to be remembered by helping someone and that is the key for success, make a difference in a person`s life.
“I believe the reason why I have an unbelievable network is that I help so many people on my journey and everybody who has helped me in my journey I have made sure, I have contributed to their lives as well in the best way”
You founded Animal Fair Media, Inc., the premier pet lifestyle media platform bridging celebrity, pop culture, and animal rescue, to support animal rescue/welfare. Where does that great love that you have for animals come from?
Well, when I was growing, I always had animals, I had dogs, cats, horses, bunnies I had all these animals, so my parents got divorced I was alone a lot growing up and I think the love I had was in the bond with animals. I always remember the innocence and the peer joy, so animals give you unconditional love, they give you loyalty, they are adorable, they are simple, they are happy to be loved.
What does a normal workday look like for you?
I wake up very early I take 2 cups of coffee very strong with hot… hot milk and sugar, then I am back to the basis, I literally talk to so many people a day because for every yes there are about 20 or 50 Nos. I work in many projects to make this world a better place, making partnerships to launch initiatives for Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Organization, talking to our ambassadors around the world about how they can make a bigger impact in our communities. I am working on a new project: Be My Mentor, which is a technology platform to match everyone in the world a free mentor through a seamless ecosystem to connect the world! So, I am working with my developers, trying to make this a reality for the world.
I am a big fan of yoga, I love walking and hiking; I am a not a GYM person, I work out at least 3 times a week, I am very healthy, I am vegetarian and I try to eat very healthy.
“Learn, learn and learn because the most you stimulate your mind the more you will be able to think everything you´ve done in your life and how you can contribute”
What do you love most about your job? & what is the most difficult part?
The most difficult part about my job is I must make it happen; I am responsible for it. I have never worked for a company in my life, I don`t know what is like to have other people help you and all the kind of stuff, so I think just be motivated, being in love of what you are doing and try to do something you really care about, it is not easy but I have a positive attitude I believe everybody in the world controls their minds, the way they see, feel and think. When things go dark and you think: This is so hard” hey, stop what is the worst thing that happens? Keep going. We all have jobs to pay the rent, buy food, etc. but always find something you are excited about to help. Believe me, I have had stalkers trying to ruin my life but that just made me stronger, but I realize everything is positive in life. Everything we go through, there is a reason, something we had to learn from that.
What is one strategy that has helped you to grow your business?
Your network, your network, I don`t care if you hate your job, your internship, you hate that person. So make sure you have respect and honor every relationship because everything teaches you something, I believe the reason why I have an unbelievable network is that I help so many people on my journey and everybody who has helped me in my journey I have made sure I have contributed to their lives as well in the best way.
What did it mean to you to receive the Pioneer award Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations in recognition of your achievements for being an outstanding humanitarian and being a leader? What does it drive you?
I don´t care about awards, they are superficial, people get awards, get tittles, what do you really care about? How do you want to be remembered? Do good for things for others. It all really matters. Everybody can help somebody. Everybody has time, and this is more valuable than anything right now.
“You must realize like you must face the issue and see the brighter sight of everything. Things happen you must go through it and keep positive”
You were inspired to launch Women's Entrepreneurship Day Organization in 2013 with the mission to empower WOMEN in business and alleviate poverty. What initiatives should the governments of the world create to empower women and girls to become active participants in the economy and what we should do as a society about it?
To create initiatives, we launched Women's Entrepreneurship Day Organization in 2013 at the time where there weren´t initiatives toward women´s entrepreneurs, so a program was launched in NYC from the ground up giving women entrepreneurs legal advice and the ability to get business advice, etc. What everybody should do is to start with a ground-up approach, number 1 proclaiming the day, you know let´s celebrate women, empower and support women in business here is the objectives to put in place in our government.
You an Investor and Advisor in social impact disruptive technologies and women-led businesses in Health Sciences, Renewable Energy, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain Technology, among others. What are the biggest lessons you have learned over the years?
- Never lose your inner child
- Be accepting of everything in life
- Learn, learn and learn because the most you stimulate your mind the more you will be able to think everything you´ve done in your life and how you can contribute
So being able to bring all my connections from my life, and to be able to help these companies to accelerate and make a bigger difference in the world is the greatest gift.
“Fear stops a lot of dreams. If you really want to do something, make it work. It is hard work, but the results are amazing”
Everybody has had dark moments in their lives, what have you done to get out of that phase?
I had a stalker who ruined my entire life in 2011, I was on a TV show twice a month, I had a prime show on CBS I raised millions of dollars for animal rescue, and one person basically ruined my life. In my head I knew there was something that would come out of this; you must realize like you must face the issue and see the brighter sight of everything. Things happen you must go through it and keep positive.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I really love working on things, I do yoga, hiking, I love to travel and see the world.
Many authors say women can and must strive to have everything – a shining career, a blossoming family life, and a perfectly balanced lifestyle all at once, others point out that– then women are placing unrealistic expectations on themselves if they believe they can have it all, so according to your experience, what do you think about these statements?
I think whatever is meant to be is meant to be. If you are lucky enough to find a husband and children, enjoy it! And maybe if you never met the person and never had children, enjoy it! Accept your life, we should be grateful for what we have been given, don´t put any pressure on yourself, life is easy people make it complicated, so just be grateful, so that´s how you look at it.
What are your plans for the future?
No plans, doing what I am doing now. I am living my future right now.
There is still the glass ceiling for women in the world: Fewer opportunities, jobs underpaid just for that fact of being a woman, etc. Have you experimented with the glass ceiling? If yes, what are the biggest challenges you have faced and how have you overcome them?
I don´t really look at the challenge, I get through, I think you just must be comfortable and not fear, fear stops a lot of dreams. If you really want to do something, make it work. It is hard work, but the results are amazing.
What tips, can you give to young girls who want to become an entrepreneur like you?
- Be positive
- Pluck up (to persuade yourself to do something that frightens you)
- Passion for what you´re doing is what to get through tough times
I think in your position, many people may have the wrong idea of who you are, and what do you (professionally), with this idea in mind, what is being Wendy, and what´s not?
There is a lot of people that love me and that is a lot of people that are jealous and hate me. I really don´t care.
Who is the woman you admire the most and why?
One of the reasons I launched Women's Entrepreneurship Day because there are some people, women in our society that no one has heard of them that changed history for example the woman who created the dishwasher: Josephine Garis Cochrane, the woman who created the internet, I am talking about Hedy Lamarr, those are the kind of people that I admire.
Name: Wendy E. Diamond
Company: Women's Entrepreneurship Day Organization
Designation: Investor/ CEO / Founder