Education: Bachelor's in psychology
First Job: Ice Cream Parlor
What I'm Reading: "Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change" by Pema Chodron
My Philosophy: Follow the three Rs—respect for yourself, respect for others, and responsibility for your actions.
Danna Lyons • Milk Money
Co-founder, Owner2015 award winner
I am not a workaholic. I truly believe that the only way for success to pervade my life is by having a healthy balance of work, leisure, play, love, and rest.
I spend a great deal of time meditating. I meditate on a daily basis and attend regular meditation retreats. I’m about to go on a short four-day retreat with a group of my meditation friends. We will spend about eight hours a day in meditation, and receive guidance and teachings from our teacher during the course of the four days.
My practice helps me feel connected to a higher power, so that when challenges arise, which are inevitable, I know that all things will work out for the best. Meditation really grounds me and allows me to have the strength, courage, and confidence I need to accomplish my work goals, my family goals, and my life goals.
It also helps having a deep inner love for my work. I love our Milk Money storeowner, and am in awe of their accomplishments. I truly love and am dedicated to the message of Milk Money—an earth-smart business that helps to strengthen families, communities, and, ultimately, the world.
On Finding Success and Staying Competitive
If you’re having fun and enjoying your work, I truly believe you will be successful. Competitiveness is key to a point; it is important to challenge yourself and try going in a different direction than you originally imagined, because you never know where it will lead you.
On the Importance of Role Models and Mentors
My mom was probably my biggest and most profound role model. She raised my brother and me on her own, and was always looking for bargains. That’s why I have a longstanding appreciation of a good deal. My frugal childhood definitely motivated me to open Milk Money.
On Facing Challenges
My biggest challenge was how to actively incorporate parenting into my work life. I wanted to be a full-time parent, as well as a productive participant in the work force. There have been times when I closed the store early to be with my kids. Milk Money has allowed me to manage both.
Danna’s Advice to Young Women Starting Careers
My mom taught me to always follow the three Rs—Respect for myself, Respect for others, and Responsibility for all of my actions. I think young women should definitely try to live by this motto when preparing for a career, because doing so will allow them to keep a level head.