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Forum for Women Entrepreneurs (FWE) educates, energizes and empowers all women, encouraging them to become wildly successful entrepreneurs.



Tara, tell us about your experience with Pitch for the Purse…

The Pitch for the Purse competition was a pivotal moment for me in entrepreneurship and SmartSweets journey.. It was the first time that I was surrounded by so many incredible women in business who were going through similar challenges as me. Not just business challenges, but traits that are sometimes amplified in women- I remember the Semi-Finals pitch event where we were all chattering before going on and thinking “OMG! These women are just as terrified as I am… I thought I was the only one who questioned myself this much!!!” Beyond meeting incredible women and feeling so welcomed to a new community in FWE that felt like a family, the competition instilled in me the confidence that reaffirmed the thought in my mind “hey, you can do this!! You have so many people who believe in YOU… You are capable!!”

It’s funny because I remember when I read the article back in the fall of 2016 that announced the competition and that applications were opened, I thought to myself, “There are so many incredible women entrepreneurs and businesses… No way do I stand a chance”. I always believe that you have to try regardless of internal dialogue – So I applied anyways.. It’s pretty neat what can manifest if you just make the decision to try!

What have the months following your winning of Pitch for the Purse looked like for you?

The months following winning Pitch for the Purse were filled with rocket-ship growth. People I met through the journey of Pitch for the Purse turned into some of the most transformational relationships that I believe have held a direct impact on expediting the trajectory at which SmartSweets grows into being a global brand and leader in the mission to kick sugar. I couldn’t have anticipated the ripple effect that was triggered by winning Pitch for the Purse.. it was nothing short of incredible #Gratitude and I am forever grateful for having the FWE community give SmartSweets the honour of winning. I hesitate to use the word “win”, as it was very clear that between myself, the semi-finalists and the other finalists we all felt like winners just by having the opportunity to be surrounded by so much support, regardless of the outcome of the competition.