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Forum Preview: Discover your Authentic Leadership
Organizations often have a culture that doesn’t allow women to thrive as leaders. Ashley Fullenwider and Laura Todd of Nuu-Muu want to inspire women to take stock of their authentic selves and create the space they want to be in.
With a wealth of experience in this realm, we’re excited the duo will be leading a breakout session at this year’s National Forum on Women & Bicycling that will encourage participants to “discover their core motivations for doing the work that keeps them bright.”
In 2008, Fullenwider founded Nuu-Muu with business partner and friend Christine Nienstedt. The two had become friends through biking while living in Seattle. They enjoyed capping off their bike rides with dinner or a beer, and often rode their bikes while wearing dresses. They were inspired to develop a company that not only created a product that reflected the active lives they hoped to inspire in other women, but also a business model that valued their philosophy of green living, American-made products, contributing to their community and, of course, empowering women and girls.
So what is Nuu Muu exactly? It’s a clothing company aimed at addressing “a grievous lack of fantastic women's fitness wear.” It’s dedicated to the ideals that work-out wear can be fun and truly flattering and that a company can contribute to greater good in the world. It’s main product: An exercise-and-everything-else dress that translates seamlessly from athletic activities, like cycling, to everyday life.
In 2014, Laura Todd joined the company, bringing her experience as a personal coach and work in the corporate world in leadership development for T-Mobile. The duo of Todd and Fullenwider will engage Forum participants in an experiential session on learning to be courageous in our work — and inspire creativity to see ourselves and our efforts in a new light.
Ashley Fullenwider: Ashley is in love with bike freedom — and everyone engaged in the noble pursuit to make bicycling more accessible and acceptable as a modern transportation mode. In the beginning, she biked across the United States on a mountain bike with knobby tires, no tent, and without knowing how to fix a flat. A few things have changed, but the bike love has lasted strong and true. When she's not keeping up with the staff of Nuu-Muu, she rides bikes, lives yoga and dreams big. What happens when we have courage to try new things, speak our quiet truths and dare to be bold? She’s quite certain we're all on the same team.
Laura Todd: Laura was the first kid in her preschool class to ride a two-wheel bike and encouraged others at an early age to ride. She loves the feeling of being on a bike, whether it commuting, mountain biking, cycle touring, gravel grinding or taking her nephew to school on a cargo bike. In work, she is a personal coach, facilitator and organizational development leader specializing in helping individuals and groups find the confluence of their personal values and their community.