Baton Rouge Local Customers Shining Bright!

Baton Rouge Local Customers Shining Bright!

Baton Rouge is buzzing with talented individuals, and we at Sweet Baton Rouge® love to see our customers shining a light on their amazing work & talents! Today, we're turning the spotlight on a few inspiring ladies. From honorees of the Business Report Influential Women in Business to showcasing their talents through residencies and book launches, these Baton Rouge locals deserve to be recognized. Get ready to meet some truly remarkable women!

Let’s Meet Jenn Lee Hester, Local Artist:

We're thrilled to showcase Jenn Lee Hester, a talented Baton Rouge artist and a loyal customer of Sweet Baton Rouge® since way back in 2018! Back then, Jenn's artistic talents were on full display as the muralist for our very first Sweet Baton Rouge® Local Pop Up Shop at Perkins Rowe. Her vibrant creations helped us make a big splash, and we were so grateful for her contribution. Jenn continued to collaborate with us in 2019 and 2020, solidifying a special connection between her artistic journey and Sweet Baton Rouge®.

Fast forward to 2020, and Jenn transitioned to become a full-time artist! Her passion for lettering and design shines through in all her work, and her latest project, "Letter It Out," is a testament to that. This unique book brings together a community of local Baton Rouge artists, inviting them to express their vulnerabilities and coping mechanisms through the power of lettering. It's a beautiful collaboration that aims to inspire hope, relief, and encouragement for readers. But the positive impact doesn't stop there! All proceeds from the sale of "Letter It Out" go directly to the Forum 225 Community Pantry, showcasing Jenn's dedication to giving back to the Baton Rouge community she calls home. We're incredibly proud of Jenn's accomplishments and excited to see what her future holds!

Let’s Meet Melissa Dotson, Shell Engineer:

Melissa Dotson is an engineer who works for Shell and is passionate about mentorship and development, both within her company and in the community. She prioritizes creating a space where people can thrive and believes that a team that embraces diversity of thought is the key to success. Dotson is involved in various organizations such as the National Charity League, the Junior League of Greater Baton Rouge, the Louisiana Art & Science Museum, and the LSU Chemical Engineering Advisory Board.

Melissa Dotson, has been a long time Lagniappe Box and Sweet Baton Rouge® customer who loves supporting locals and has supported us since day one when we launched our very first Lagniappe Box back in 2016. At this time she was living in Texas and wanted a piece of Louisiana shipped monthly curated of local Louisiana goods and has continued to support our local love ever since, even after moving back to Louisiana. 

Dotson is a strong advocate for empowering individuals and helping them reach their full potential. She credits Robin Roberts’ book, Everybody’s Got Something, for inspiring her to see the value in diverse perspectives. Dotson believes that everyone has unique experiences and backgrounds that shape who they are, and that these differences should be celebrated. She finds Shell to be a company that aligns with her values, focusing on building teams with a variety of viewpoints and encouraging employees to bring their authentic selves to work.
Information sourced from Business Report.

Let's Meet Amanda Martin, Founder of Studyville®:

We had the pleasure of meeting Amanda Martin, a true entrepreneur and powerhouse, a couple of years ago through the Influential Business Women's Network. It's been inspiring to witness her navigate the incredible growth of her business, Studyville®! We've also had the privilege of collaborating with Amanda, creating artwork for Studyville's t-shirts, which has been a fun way to infuse a bit of Sweet Baton Rouge® flair into her work.

Amanda, a mom of teenagers herself, understood the struggles of nightly homework battles all too well. Traditional tutoring just wasn't cutting it for her busy family. They needed a better solution, something that offered flexibility and eliminated the stress of homework fights altogether. That's when the idea for Studyville® was born!

Launched in 2020, Studyville® has experienced phenomenal growth. In just four years, the company has more than tripled its revenue and expanded to a second location in Alexandria. They've also broadened their offerings to include microschooling, early childhood literacy programs, and even expanded their tutoring services to Georgia, North Carolina, and Florida. This impressive growth is fueled by Studyville's exceptional results – Amanda reports that their tutoring is a staggering 275% more effective than the national average!

"We're dedicated to education and empowering students to reach their full potential," says Amanda. "Our passion and commitment to excellence have driven our growth."

The next chapter for Studyville® is franchising. While a significant step, Amanda recognizes the limitations of single-handedly managing everything. "The need for quality tutoring is immense," she says, "and now is the perfect time to own a successful tutoring center, done the right way."

We're incredibly proud of you, Amanda! Your dedication and hard work are truly inspiring.

Information sourced from Business Report.

Let’s Meet Kim Meadowlark, Baton Rouge Artist & Photographer:

Our creative journey with Kim Meadowlark began in 2019. She captured the vibrant energy of Mardi Gras through her lens for our Mardi Gras collection that year, and since then, her talent has graced countless Sweet Baton Rouge® photography projects, even extending to our restaurant, Library Wine & Provisions. Over the years, Kim has become a true friend and collaborator. We've witnessed firsthand the evolution of her artistic vision and her keen eye for capturing beauty. It's been a privilege to support her artistic journey, and we cherish the mutual love we share.

Just a week ago, Kim shared exciting news on Instagram: a summer residency at a renowned gallery! While a traditional college path wasn't for her, building a career as an artist has been her passion from the very beginning.

This summer, Louisiana State University College of Art & Design is welcoming two resident artists to the LSU Glassell Gallery downtown. From May 25th to June 14th, both ceramic artist Richard Boehnke and our very own Kim Meadowlark will transform the gallery into open studios. Visitors are invited to engage with the artists during their creative process over the month-long residency. You'll find Kim there every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, ready to connect and create.

As a Baton Rouge-based artist, Kim's work is deeply influenced by synesthesia, a neurological condition that intertwines the senses. This unique perception allows her to translate music and sound into stunning visual art forms. Primarily working with acrylics on canvas, she seamlessly integrates various mediums into each piece, creating works known for their fluidity, vivid colors, and powerful emotions. Her latest collection builds upon a decade of artistic exploration, showcasing a captivating interplay of geometric shapes and evocative themes.

We're bursting with pride for Kim's accomplishments, and we know this is just the beginning of an incredible journey for this undeniably creative talent.

Baton Rouge's heart beats with the energy of its’ incredible people. At Sweet Baton Rouge®, we're more than just apparel; we're committed to making a positive impact on our community. Through philanthropy, we actively support and empower small businesses and neighborhoods. Fostering a strong local network has always been a core value for us, and our love for small businesses will continue to be a driving force. Thank you for reading today’s local guide blog – it's your one-stop to discover the best Baton Rouge has to offer!