Michelle Maryns has been honored with the 2020 JA Impact Award for her outstanding support of youth entrepreneurs as JAUM’s first Entrepreneur in Residence. In this role, she mentored 20 students in the inaugural cohort of JA LaunchU, a program that equips high school students with the skills needed to launch their own business venture. By sharing her experience and expertise, she guided students in creating, marketing, and operating their own company from concept to business plan, financing, execution, and sales.
Michelle Maryns is Founder & CEO of We Sparkle, the first AI-powered Software as a Service (SaaS) social enterprise focused on small businesses. As former Chief of Strategic Initiatives at Meda, a nonprofit that helps minority entrepreneurs succeed, Michelle brings experience helping startups like Skip Scooters, Boosted Boards, Molly Fuller Design, Spinning Wylde, 26 Letters, Ova Woman, and Zaarly. She gained more than 10 years of digital marketing experience while working at Greater MSP, American Academy of Neurology, Reve Consulting, U.S. Department of Justice, and the U.S. Department of State. She earned her Master’s in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Kansas.