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The Art Of The Start

Founder & CEO Susan Correa

art & eden founder & CEO Susan CorreaSusan Correa has built her entire career in the apparel industry. She’s led multi-million dollar operations around the world, co-founded the successful fashion brand cooper & ella and managed a global sourcing company. Yet, despite these rich and fulfilling years, Susan felt something was missing. 
Inspired by the purpose-driven lives of family and friends, Susan felt called to do more than simply “achieve”. 
In an attempt to weave together her passion for fashion with a journey of impact, she created the program EMPOWER—an initiative that provides hot, nutritious meals to children in need. Slowly but surely, the wheels of change began to turn. We choose a career. A vocation chooses us.-- Robert A. Johnson. 
To launch EMPOWER, Susan scheduled a trip to the Hope Foundation School in Bangalore, India. For the long journey, she packed two books: Seth Godin’s Linchpin and Jim Collins’ From Good to Great. The authors’ powerful messages, the inspiring children, the poverty, the whisper of possibility-- it was a recipe for transformation. Nothing could stay the same. 
The books changed her course. The kids changed her heart. The journey changed her forever. Creativity is the unexpected mixing of existing ideas to form something entirely new. 
Susan got creative. She realized that Jim Collins’ ideas on “how to be best in the world” clicked with Seth Godin’s “how to be best for the world.” She connected the need she witnessed at the Hope Foundation School with the opportunity for business to rise up and meet the need for organic kids clothes. She saw how the fashion industry had the incredible power to generate a better world by embracing its moral responsibility to self-reform through ethical children’s clothing. 
When Susan returned, it was with a mission to find the better way forward. After several months of research on reformative processes, countless conversations and some crucial game-changing encounters, what began as a dream turned into reality: art & eden was born. 
August 17th 2014- Mumbai, India Susan was at the airport en route to Bangalore to launch a midday meal program. There she bumped into an old colleague, Arun Goenka who casually invited her to visit his ethical children’s clothing factory in Bangalore. This factory eventually ended up developing, supporting & partially funding art & eden. August 18th 2014 - Bangalore, India Susan launched Empower. Every garment sold a meal was served to a child in need. This is the day when everything changed! Susan discovered her why and found her way forward. July 24th 2015 - South Burlington, VT Susan reached out to the CEO of Ben & Jerry’s, Jostein Solheim, to better understand the journey of sustainability. He invited her to visit the Ben & Jerry’s headquarters. Social missions director Rob Michalak led Susan through their incredible journey of sustainability. Susan found that the Better Way does indeed exist.  July 31st 2015 - Boston, NY Susan met Michael Voligny who works at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. They discussed the other way of fashion vs. the better way. An hour later, Susan was convinced that the Better Way was the only way forward. Susan decided to exit her executive roles in two multi-million businesses in pursuit of the Better Way through ethical children’s clothing.  October 29th 2015 - New York, NY Discovered Adrienne Weiss’ key role in building brand assets for iconic American brands. Ms. Weiss, who lives in Chicago, happened to be flying to NY the very day Susan reached out to her. Susan pitched to her the art & eden brand idea and Adrienne Weiss said, “art & eden is not just a good idea but a great idea,” she signed on right away.  December 12th 2016 - New York, NY Susan Correa met 21st century thought leader, author, marketer, public speaker and entrepreneur, Seth Godin. It was reading Seth Godin’s book, Linchpin that inspired Susan to build a organic cotton clothing business that was better for the world. It was his re-purposed definition of the word art that fundamentally formed the start of the art & eden journey.  January 25th 2017- New York, NY Launch of art & eden!

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The Art Of The Start

Founder & CEO Susan Correa Susan Correa has built her entire career in the apparel industry. She’s led multi-million dollar operations around the world, co-founded the successful fashion brand coo
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