Chasing a Dream
This month, we’re spotlighting Detroit’s Black entrepreneurs, which I’m particularly excited about. I’m no entrepreneur, but as a creative, I’ve always felt like the two spheres are kin to one another. I spent years as a freelance writer, and so, I get the hustle. I get the late nights. I get steadfastly stomping out a path that most will be unwilling to follow – or even understand. I get the soul-wringing desire to spend your days doing what you love and birthing something that didn’t exist before.
Our cover star is Nailah Ellis-Brown of Ellis Isle (formerly Ellis Island Tea). I interviewed Ellis-Brown and our other entrepreneurs, and she and I spoke about some of the inspiring things the brand has been up to – but she also talked about the hard work. No spoilers, but the beverage company is switching gears in a few major ways, but to get there, Ellis-Brown shares, hasn’t been easy. And that’s the real of it.
Vetra Stephens of cannabis brand 1st Quality Medz and Nelson Sanders of custom suiting house Dandy round out our main profiles. Photographer Lauren Jeziorski visited each one at their places of business, capturing that entrepreneurial essence. Also look out for a handful of honorable mentions.
We asked each of them the same three questions: What personal quality has served you best as an entrepreneur? What’s one thing you thought you knew about entrepreneurship that has been proven wrong? And, what advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs? Their answers ran the gamut and gave us beautiful insight into what fuels a business owner.
This Mother’s Day, while we celebrate the mothers, we also want to acknowledge the millions of women who are struggling with infertility, an issue that affects Black women more often than white women. Writer Kaye Byrd calls on endocrinologist Dr. Karen Wheeler of Reproductive Medicine Associates of Michigan to walk us through in vitro fertilization, the most commonly used assisted reproductive technology. Discover the ins and outs, from the medicine to the money to the mental.
We also check in with Deon and Karen Derrico, the Detroit-bred, Las Vegas-based couple who are parents to 14 biological children. Season 2 of their TLC reality show, Doubling Down with the Derricos, premiers on June 1.
We’re also looking ahead to National Wine Day on May 25 by rounding up our favorite Black-owned brands, discovering a new mobile spa, plus much more. And see our snapshots of folks heading into Comerica Park to watch the Detroit Tigers take on the Cleveland Indians on Opening Day. Yes, please, for the love of God, take me out to the ballgame. Or anywhere that’s open.