New York City’s 18 Coolest Power Moms
What is a Power Mom?
She’s the mom who establishes a company, helps others, takes care of the family, takes care of the kids, stays true to her style, stays true to her goals–and all with grace and a positive attitude.
She’s the mom who has it all…or at least gives the impression that she does.
New York has always been a city of movers and shakers but it also has its fair share of Power Moms. We’re honoring some of the city’s most amazing women who inspire us with everything they do.
In 2001, this awesome do-good mom established Baby Buggy, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing families in need with essential gear, clothing and products for their kids. The company also offers comprehensive social service assistance, such as job training, financial literacy classes, and parenting support & education. As if that’s not enough, Jessica is also the author of two cookbooks and founder of a website for beginner cooks called Do it Delicious. Oh, and maybe you’ve heard of her husband?
Denise is an award-winning journalist and television producer and a proud workaholic mom of two boys. She readily admits that she hated being pregnant, loves business trips, and really believes she can do it all, mom or not. Denise co-founded Moms and the City, a multi-platform brand featuring the edgy, honest and sometimes controversial opinions of real moms of New York City–Denise, and fellow award winning journalist mom Melissa Gerstein.
Liz is the Publisher & Editor-in-Chief of Cool Mom Picks, an awesome resource where moms in the know track down the coolest gifts, gear, tech and resources so you don’t have to. In 2009 Liz was named to the Nielsen “Power Mom 50″ list of online influencers, and cited on Forbes.com’s list of 10 Mother ‘Hood Gurus. She’s also been named to Forbes’ list of 14 women to follow on Twitter, and the New York Post’s list of 10 New Yorkers to follow on Twitter. With killer style sensibilities and two kids, Liz is also an avid supporter of global maternal health efforts.
Ilana Rosengarten Wiles <
Ilana is the mastermind behind Mommy Shorts, an amazingly entertaining source for her personal parenting war stories plus viral baby videos, comment competitions, fan photo albums, celebrity parenting snark, and more. She works as a freelance creative director in advertising and everything on the Mommy Shorts site–from the design to the writing–is her own creation. She’s also mom to two daughters–a three-year-old and a brand spankin’ new baby.
In addition to being an author and mother of two, Christiane is the Founder and Creative Director of DwellStudio, the incredible design house for modern home and family furnishings with innovative graphic prints and bold colors. (Oh, and did we mention the jaw-dropping Pinterest boards?) Christiane is inspired both by travel, literature, the art world, and anything and everything to do with design, from flea markets to estate sales, design magazines to reality television. And, of course, she always finds inspiration in her most important role as mom to her two kids.
Risa has made it her mission to bring New York moms together to socialize, learn, and feel like a part of a community that cares. In 2004, she and her sister established Big City Moms, a resource for moms, expectant moms & the whole family that offers a variety of programs & events including new mom lunches, expectant dinners, classes, parties, & more. Risa has a daughter and twin sons and the idea for Big City Moms was originally to help working moms meet and form friendships through events that suited their schedules.
When Tara saw a need for smart and timely content directed toward new moms with babies and toddlers, she decided to fill it. Today, she is the founder and publisher of Stroller Traffic, a free weekly email and website that keeps moms posted on the latest inventions, developments, and trends in the world of babies and toddlers. With National and local city editions, Stroller Traffic features everything from reviews of the best educational toys to play space openings and kids sales and events. Tara got a lot of her inspiration for what interests moms most from her experiences with her own daughter; the site even offers a new mom checklist based on the one Tara created while pregnant.
Joanna Delle Valle
Joanna is definitely in touch with the latest styles and trends. She’s worked for both Vogue and Interview magazine and has lived in Milan with her husband and two kids. Last year, she helped her husband launch Elizabeth Street, a website (and app) where chic, fashion-forward moms like Joanna can learn about everything from the latest fashions and travel destinations to recipes that picky eaters will love. Featuring tastemaker moms from around the globe, Elizabeth Street provides an artful, innovative and worldly view to being a stylish mother.
In many ways, Julie has lived many little girls’ dream–she’s had an extremely successful career as a ballerina and currently performs as a principle dancer with the American Ballet Theatre. She also makes time for another very important role as mom to two kids. In 2003, she caused a small stir in the dance world when she continued dancing, with the approval of her doctor, during her first pregnancy. As she told the dance editor of Time Out New York, “I guess some people think that the second you find out that you’re pregnant, you should sit down or something. […] But being pregnant is a very natural thing. And for me, so is dancing.”
Shazi Visram & Jessica Rolph
After watching a friend struggle to find healthy food options for her baby (that didn’t involve hours of slaving away in the kitchen), Shazi came up with the idea for Happy Baby—a minimally processed, organic alternative to baby food in a jar. With the help of fellow super mom and business partner Jessica, the company has since grown into Happy Family, a comprehensive line for the whole family. Both women are moms (Shazi has one son, Jessica has two) and built their company from the ground up with a lot of passion for healthy lifestyle choices, socially responsible business practices, and anything that makes a mom’s work easier.
Alexis Maybank & Alexandra Wilkis Wilson
Alexis Maybank and Alexandra Wilkis Wilson are cofounders of Gilt Group, a members-only flash sale site that provides instant insider access to top designer labels for travel, food, home furnishings and local services. Alexis, with a background in eCommerce at eBay and AOL, and Alexandra, with a background in luxury goods from Bulgari and Louis Vuitton, helped reinvent luxury shopping and have become models for businesswomen everywhere. Alexandra has one kid, Alexis has two, and both balance business with motherhood in extraordinary ways.
Monica is “Chief Technology Mom” and co-founder of The Online Mom, an organization and web site devoted to providing parents with everything they need to know to protect their kids and encourage responsible behavior as they make the most of technology and the new digital world. Monica has more than 15 years of consumer technology expertise, previously PTA President at her daughter’s elementary school, and is an active advocate of parents embracing technology by understanding both its benefits and risks. Whether it’s understanding social networking, photo sharing, texting,YouTube or just finding the right video games, Monica strives to make The Online Mom an essential resource for parents.
Laurie Block Spigel
Laurie is a home educator who has lectured and written extensively on education, parenting, and raising a family in New York City. The daughter of university professors, she has met many educators in her life, including award-winning professors and Disney Teachers-of-the-Year, whom she has relentlessly questioned. She is the mastermind behind Home School NYC, where she compiles all her knowledge and research about homeschooling and share her own experiences homeschooling her two sons.
Erin is the committee chair of the Central NY Community of Autism Speaks and the mom behind A Million Pieces for Autism, which was her son Christian’s idea for a campaign to raise $1 million, one dollar at a time, for Autism Speaks. Erin’s two sons have autism and she is dedicated to increasing public awareness about autism and bringing the autism community together.
You can thank Nadine for your kiddo’s enraptured commitment to Elmo and pals. As VP of Production at Sesame Street, she’s involved with the quality programming of those Muppets we all know and love. Prior to Sesame Street, Zylstra worked as a producer, director and writer in South Africa. She’s won numerous awards for her work with Sesame Street, including the United Nations/NHK/Japan Prize for Courage in depicting Youth in Difficult Circumstances, and is mom to two awesome kids.
Susan’s first child was due September 12, 2001 and after the events of September 11th, she made the decision to focus on quality of life and community issues. Since that time Susan has led efforts to create online and offline networks of people to support each other and the community. In 2002, Susan founded Park Slope Parents, a community for parents who want information, counsel, discussions on urban living, and the chance to socialize. There is a strong online presence, along with many offline events, including festivals, kids’ music concerts, community service efforts, and clothing swaps.
When Sandie noticed multiple listings on her local parent listservs for free baby items she thought of low-income mothers who often lack basic necessities for their children and concluded that these items would be useful to local Brooklyn organizations who serve mothers living in poverty. As a mother of a young child, Sandie identified with those families who only wanted what was best for their children. Sandi started Little Essentials which generated tremendous response and continues to outfit kids with clothing, gear, toys and other items that lift spirits, provide hope to parents, and take care of our environment by reusing items that are only briefly used.
Who else deserves a spot on our list?