Linda S. York is the founder and CEO of StickyLickits, a line of eat-able stickers that entice kids to be more adventurous eaters, especially when it comes to fruits and veggies. The stickers are currently available in the produce departments of more than 350 Walmart stores in the Western U.S. Learn about Linda S. York…
Hometown: Calistoga, California
First job: Selling bouquets of flowers I made from my mother’s garden to people in my neighborhood for $.50 and including a free butterfly if they bought more than one bouquet.
Favorite ways to spend your free time in CA: Creating memories with my granddaughters by finding fun things for us to do together like having high tea in San Francisco, traipsing through the vineyards in Rutherford, visiting a special comic bookstore in Santa Rosa or the beach in Marin Country. And all these adventures include shopping and delicious food.
Your biggest accomplishment and why: Making the decision to use my retirement money and invest my time into starting a business with no guarantees of success because I believed in the vital importance of showing children at an early age how healthy eating could be fun.
The biggest obstacle you overcame: My own fear of failure. Finding out that I did not have to know all the answers about how to create a product, get it manufactured then let the world know it exists. I just needed to believe I could find the answers.
Someone who inspires you and why: Dr. Jacki Storm, was an unsung hero in the field of applied nutrition. She raised early concerns with Congress about the long-term negative health effects of chemical food additives. In addition, she developed breakthroughs in destigmatizing and treating eating disorders. She was an amazing educator who helped so many people learn how to value themselves and not consider failure as the measure of whether you were successful or not. She believed that success was achieved in the doing. She embodied the values I admire most: respect, compassion, kindness, integrity and humility.
Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: I think you need to create your own roadmap for whatever career or careers you choose to pursue. You can keep your eye on the destination, but in order to sustain the trip, you have to find excitement, meaning and pleasure, in addition to the pain. It’s really about enjoying the journey. You have to get up every day and say, “I get to do this wonderful, frustrating, problem-riddled thing I call my business,” not “I’ve got to do this.” Ask for help. Make failure your teacher.
Favorite quote: “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.” —George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans)
Something someone would be surprised to learn about you: I owned a small seafood restaurant on the Jersey Shore where I was literally the chief cook and bottle washer. I speak Italian.
What makes someone fabulous: When they’re not afraid to stand in their own spotlight.