Denver's Thriving Community

3 Entrepreneurs Who Are Teaching Us What It Means To Be a Denverite

If you think of the perfect way to describe Denver, one word may come to mind: community. One of the many things that drives this wondrous city that we share are the local businesses. Following the ethos of its culture, connection and tenacity since as early as the mid-1800s, the small business owners that surround our favorite neighborhoods like Five Points, Cherry Creek, Wash Park and City Park are all shining examples of the historic value that Denver has to offer both its locals and visitors.

Priya Burkett and Vicki Howard

With the mission to ignite communities, professions and passions within the beauty space, co-founders Priya Burkett and Vicki Howard of On Point Beauty Bar have created a space with the initiative to sustain the historical prominence of the Five Points neighborhood, while also bringing attention to the beauty of its locality.

Inspired by its home, On Point Beauty Bar is representative of the essence that Five Points itself radiates: full of culture, people and small businesses that act as a recollection to the ode of the neighborhood’s historic roots. Comparatively, Burkett believes that she and her business partner are reinstating traditional methods and products for sustainable and effective haircare—ones that date back to ancestry. They’ve launched On Point Beauty hair care products, free of chemicals and parabens, which are focused on hydration and health. Whether it’s the generational nostalgia of using tea tree oil or going back to ancestral use of vitamins and essential oils, there is something that all women of color can recall experiencing in their young adulthood. And that experience and memory can be felt at On Point Beauty Bar with their diverse stylists who embrace and encourage connecting with the roots that make us who we are within.

To book an appointment at On Point Beauty Bar at 2820 Welton St., Denver or to shop their products, please visit FivePointsBeautyBar.com.

 Colin Gbolie

Bringing his Western-African familial connection to many Denver neighborhoods, owner of Diamond Doughnuts Colin Gbolie is using his business to help market and expose other small businesses and vendors to the local community. “Forging an actual meaningful connection with residents opens up a lot of doors,” says Colin. Using his mother’s Sierra Leone recipe to initiate these connections, he's able to foster support among the community on a larger scale. 

“I enjoy meeting people and vibing with them. You can only do this by breaking bread with people—and food is the way to do that. Especially when it's good,” he says. You can find Diamond Doughnuts every weekend at local farmers markets and fairs, outside of local coffee shops and bookstores and on their website at DiamondDoughnuts.shop. You can also keep up with Colin on his Instagram—where he will post his upcoming whereabouts at @DiamondDoughshop.

Tasha L. Jones

Tasha L. Jones, founder of LV Jones Consulting, not only helps tell the stories of Black and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) business owners, but she also helps those who partner with these businesses to understand their stories and how to best build strategy based on their experiences. “When I launched my business as a diversity marketing consulting firm, I made sure to make it clear that it is important to understand the complexities and foundational nature of learning about diversity overall. I pose the question ‘What is the difference between inclusion versus representation?’ Once you understand that, you’re able to define your initiative and I can then help you authentically create a diversity marketing message around your commitment,” explains Tasha.

Regardless of what industry or business you’re in, LV Jones Consulting brings more diverse voices to the table. Tasha believes that without these voices present, the story cannot be told to diverse audiences. “It is important to show up in your community,” says Tasha. “It is about being representative of how you do the work and not necessarily about the work itself. We have to ask ourselves, ‘How are we being of service to those who help make our community thrive?'”

You can connect with Tasha at LV Jones Consulting at LVJonesConsulting.com.

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