Meet Jessie Laux, owner at Planthropy

My name is Jessie Laux. I am a new NAWBO member! I have had the opportunity to attend a few Women, Wisdom and Wine events. These events have been invaluable for networking and meeting some awesome, passionate, fun and hard working women. NAWBO has been an amazing resource for not just my business, but me personally!  

Tell us about your business.

I launched Planthropy about 3 years ago. When I launched, I had a vision of filling homes and offices with plant arrangements that would help reduce stress, brighten a room and cultivate joy. The plants we work with are low-maintenance and hard to kill, which helps our customers feel confident about caring for them. What I didn’t realize when I launched, is that I was introducing biophilic design into these spaces. Biophilia is the urge for humans to affiliate with other life. You can think about it as our natural attraction to nature, and a biological need for contact with the natural world. Think about how you feel if you are taking a walk, hiking, if a breeze is blowing through a room, or the feeling you get when sunlight beams through a window, etc. Biophilic design improves both physiological and psychological health, which is especially important as people are spending an average of 90% of the day indoors! Recently, Planthropy has expanded our services offering Interior Plantscaping, providing complete plant solutions, moss walls and living walls for residential and commercial spaces.

What inspired you to get into your business?

I’m a nature lover and an outdoor junkie. I grew up spending all my time outside and although that hasn’t changed much, I always loved having plants indoors. I liked the idea of having living things that you could nurture and care for. I also loved that plants, unlike flowers, can last years when cared for properly. Growing up, my mom had several house plants, including one gigantic fern that was over 10 years old. It didn’t mean much to me at the time, but when I think about it, it’s so astounding and beautiful. When I started researching and learning about the positive impact that plants have on your well-being, it made so much sense - I wanted to share it with everyone!

What are your three best practices or best tips that every NAWBO member needs to hear?

I recently changed my morning routine so I wasn’t waking up feeling overwhelmed. When I get out of bed, I avoid checking my phone or my computer. I stretch, have a glass of water, then while I’m having my morning coffee, I dive into emails, notifications on my phone, etc. It stops the chaos first thing in the morning, which makes me feel like I have more control over the day. Taking these few extra minutes to go through this routine helps set the tone for my day. Take time for yourself. This is something we all KNOW we need to do, but it always seems to be the last priority on our list. At least 3 times a week, I schedule time on my calendar - wherever it fits for either a run or a workout. This is MY time. I don’t check my mail, I stay off of social, I completely disconnect. It’s okay to say “No”. I’m still working on this one, but I’m trying! Sometimes we feel guilty or bad for saying no to whatever it may be, but deep down we know it’s not a good idea, or there isn’t enough time, or there are higher priorities, etc.

What does your future look like?

My future looks….green and full of life! I look forward to educating people about the benefits of plants and bringing biophilic design to Columbus.

In the last five years, what new belief, behavior or habit has most improved your life?

Intuition is everything. I’ve learned to trust my decision making the past few years. You know your body better than anyone. When your gut is telling you something, listen!

What do you do in your free time?

In my free time, I love hiking, planting, running, camping and trying DIY projects I find from Pinterest.

What is your company website?

Noel Shepard, Member-in-Charge of the Columbus office of Frost Brown Todd

Tell us about your company

Frost Brown Todd (FBT) is a full-service law firm with offices in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia. We have currently over 500 lawyers across our eight-state footprint. We serve a diverse client base, from global multi-nationals to small, entrepreneurial companies.

FBT's Columbus office opened in August 1988. Today, it accommodates more than 40 legal professionals. We provide legal counsel in Business and Corporate Law, Lending and Commercial Services, Environmental Law, Governmental Law, Intellectual Property Law, Labor and Employment Law, Commercial Litigation, Construction Law, Insurance Bad Faith and Product Liability Defense.

Our attorneys actively take part on boards of community and charitable groups. These include the United Way of Central Ohio, American Red Cross of Greater Columbus, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio and the Legal Aid Society of Columbus.

What motivated your organization to get involved with NAWBO? 

FBT, through its involvement with NAWBO Columbus, wants to support diversity in corporate America. The firm would like to develop relationships with local business women and decision-makers. We would also like to train associates on the importance of community involvement, client relationship development and networking.

The Women’s Initiative is part of the office’s growth strategy. The vision of the Women's Initiative is to support relationship development between our women attorneys in the Columbus office and the female-owned business sector in the city. The involvement of our office in the national convention of NAWBO in September 2016 exposed us to women business owners from all over the country. This led to the Columbus office corporate partnership with NAWBO Columbus.

What does your company offer NAWBO members and why is this important to them? 

The female attorneys in the office have been making new contacts at each monthly meeting and other events hosted by the chapter. The office is planning to host a hot topics seminar and invite NAWBO members to attend, network, and learn about strategies for their businesses. Our relationship with NAWBO furthers our commitment to diversity and inclusion. It also provides FBT significant exposure to a wealth of businesses across Central Ohio.

What is the one best practice you’ve learned from working with businesses in your company that our members should know? 

Productive business and growth results from strong relationships. At FBT, we focus on building knowledge of the client’s business. We listen to the voice of the client first and build our client work around those elements. The best results occur when both our team and the client’s team are vested in building that relationship into something that lasts and yields success over time.

2018 NAWBO Columbus Visionary Award Honorees Announced

The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), Columbus, is proud to announce the 2018 Visionary Award Honorees. The following women will be recognized on Friday, June 22, 2018 at 11:30 a.m. during the Visionary Leadership Conference at the OSU Marriott Hotel.

2018 Visionary Award Honorees are:

Abigail S. David & Erin K. Nealy, Co-Executive Directors, Bridgeway Academy

Speech-language pathologist Abby S. David and music therapist Erin K. Nealy founded Bridgeway Academy in 2005. They were looking for more meaningful and effective ways to serve children with autism and other developmental disabilities. Bridgeway Academy’s mission is to inspire the potential and celebrate the ability of every child. Bridgeway Academy accomplishes this with a centered approach – providing outstanding school day, summer camp, and psychological services, plus speech, music, physical, and occupational therapies for children with autism and other developmental disabilities.

Abigail S. David, Co-Founder & Co-Director of Bridgeway Academy has extensive experiences treating children with Autism in the areas of speech and language development with a focus on social/pragmatic language skills, receptive and expressive language development and articulation. Abby worked for the Wisconsin Early Autism program as a lead therapist from 1994 – 1998 while completing her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Education and Speech Pathology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Abby worked in the public schools as a Speech Language Pathologist for students from pre-K to 5th grade who had fluency issues, voice disorders, articulation/phonological disorders, receptive and expressive language delays, Down Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Erin K. Nealy, Co-Founder & Co-Director of Bridgeway Academy is a board certified music therapist, having received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Therapy from the University of Dayton, where she was trained in voice, piano, guitar and flute. Erin’s clinical experiences include extensive treatment of children with Autism Spectrum disorder as well as individual and group work with children ages 0 – 19 years in typical and special education settings, with physical and developmental disabilities; adults in psychiatric treatment facilities; and older adults in community and skilled nursing care facilities.  She has served in settings such as the Children’s Medical Center (Dayton, OH) and Fairfax County Public Schools (Farifax, VA).

Dr. Carol Clinton, Founder, CEO & Medical Director, Timeless Skin Solutions

Dr. Carol Clinton has served as founder, CEO & Medical Director of Timeless Skin Solutions since 2004. Those who know her best, describe her as strong, compassionate and empowering - not to mention brilliant! As a national expert in her field, Dr. Clinton is a sought after educator and trainer in the area of medical aesthetics.

She built Timeless Skin Care after spending 15 years practicing medicine in a complex, high-pressure environment where medical changes occur unexpectedly. Her compassion, attention to detail, and high standards for patient care has translated into all aspects of Timeless Skin Solutions. Today, Timeless is recognized as a groundbreaking, physician-directed skin care practice helping men, women, and teens achieve healthy and vibrant skin.


Bhakti Bania, CEO, BBCO DESIGN

Bhakti Bania is an architect and CEO of BBCO DESIGN, which she founded with her husband in 2009. Originally from Mumbai, India, she received her undergraduate Architecture Degree from the University of Mumbai.

After moving to Columbus for graduate school, she received a Masters of Architecture from The Ohio State University (OSU). She has maintained her strong ties to OSU and is the Past President of the Knowlton School Alumni Society, where she was involved in initiating an Annual Picnic that is now a popular event. Bhakti serves as a Trustee of the Upper Arlington Community Improvement Corporation, since she understands the importance of being involved and giving back to the local community. She serves on the board for the Better Business Bureau, is a member of AIA Columbus, the Urban Land Institute, CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) and NAWBO. Bhakti is passionate about sharing her experience as an immigrant and a woman business owner. Being in a male dominated industry, she believes it is important to encourage women to fulfill their career potentials and raise important issues such as pay equity and work life balance.



About the Visionary Leadership Conference & Awards: In its inaugural year, the Visionary Leadership Conference is co-hosted by NAWBO Columbus and the Women’s Small Business Accelerator (WSBA), with generous support from Brady Ware & Company, Southwest Airlines, Key Bank, and many other corporate sponsors. The day will be filled with inspirational learning and meaningful conversations to celebrate women’s leadership. The featured keynote for the awards luncheon will be Linda Clemons, CEO, Sisterpreneur, Inc. For more information about the conference and to register, visit:

The Visionary Awards are bestowed on local women business owners who have achieved success with their businesses while making notable contributions to their community, their industry, and to initiatives for other women in business. NAWBO Columbus recognizes and honors these women to showcase the amazing women who not only own and operate businesses that are vital to Ohio’s economy, but who also find time and resources to identify community needs and drive social change.

NAWBO Columbus is central Ohio’s premier organization for elevating women business owners through connections, advocacy and mentorship. Collectively, NAWBO Columbus members contribute more than $250 million dollars to the local economy. With approximately 260 members, NAWBO Columbus is the largest chapter in the country and has established itself as the essential place for inspiration, resources, and opportunities for female entrepreneurs.

Click HERE for more information and to register for the Conference.