Home / Author Archives: Kara Kavensky

Author Archives: Kara Kavensky

“One Bite at a Time” With Health and Fitness Coach, Speaker and Author, Susan Van Hoosen

Writer  /  Kara Kavensky Photographer  /  Brian Brosmer The answer to the classic question: How do you eat an elephant? Susan Van Hoosen translates her transformational journey and awakening since the passing of her late husband, Trent, into an honest and inspirational guidebook, “One Bite at a Time.” Upon the sudden loss of her husband, Susan sought strength both internally and externally. The rock at the corner of 116th and Hoosier Road, a seemingly innocuous object, became a symbol of strength for Susan. “This is my strength rock”, she says. In her book, she shares how she and the rock ...

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Moms Who Code

Writer / Kara Kavensky The courses offered through Eleven Fifty Academy, a nonprofit coding school based out of Launch Fishers, attract students of all ages, including moms Angie Washburn and Deon Seifert. Angie Washburn stayed at home for 15 years raising her children. She holds degrees in business and respiratory therapy. One of her first jobs out of college was working with a software development company, and she loved it. Angie has rediscovered her love of coding through taking a .Net course through Eleven Fifty Academy. “I was researching additional programming classes and schools and discovered Eleven Fifty Academy,” recalls ...

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The Bridge Fund: Filling a Need Gap in Lawrence Schools

Writer  /  Kara Kavensky Photographer  /  Brian Brosmer Lawrence residents Chad McCune and Mark Pressley created The Bridge Fund to help students bridge a gap in Lawrence schools. During the 2015-2016 school year, The Bridge Fund reports that 657 students were impacted by its efforts, and the number has doubled during the first semester of the 2016-2017 school year impacting more than 1,200 students. Opportunities made available included college tours, scholarships, state certification fees, winter coats, college application fees, medical scrubs, yearbooks, cosmetology kits, performing arts fees, athletic fees, and much more. “We wanted to do something in Lawrence in ...

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Interns to Orphans: Jeff Papa’s Mission to Mentor

Writer / Kara Kavensky Photographer / Brian Brosmer While planting trees in Jeff Papa’s front yard in 2003, Jeff and Steve Wolff discussed how privileged they were to be where they are in their current positions and how far they had come. They admired the work of those around them, such as Barnes & Thornburg partner Bob Grand with his support of Little Red Door. Jeff and Steve were thinking out loud, exploring ideas for their own philanthropic impact. At that time, Jeff was a senior associate attorney with Barnes & Thornburg and Steve was one of Jeff’s interns. While ...

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Designing Her Own Success

Jeryl Mitsch Leads a Team of World Class Interior Designers Writer / Kara Kavensky Photographers / Anne Buskirk & Andrew Kung The recent recipient of the National Association of Women Business Owner’s (NAWBO) 2016 Woman Business Owner of the Year, Jeryl Mitsch started her business with determination and sheer will more than 25 years ago. “Larry had a lot to do with it,” shares Jeryl, of her husband’s encouragement to open Mitsch Design, “He helped guide me along the initial process.” With little to no background in business, Jeryl considered herself solely a creative interior designer. However, with Larry’s support, ...

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Indy Sculpturist Brian McCutcheon Creates Iconic Images

Writer / Kara Kavensky Photographer / Brian Brosmer Growing up in Traverse City in northern Michigan, Brian McCutcheon’s first sculptural experience was fixing up his first car. “In retrospect, I realize my uncle lives like an artist. He was always in his shop where he has built hundreds of cars,” says Brian, who describes cars as a form of sculpture. Brian learned at a young age that one could earn a living in the arts. His parents recognized his propensity towards the arts and kept him enrolled in art and music classes throughout his youth. “I played the trombone and ...

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Love is… Adoption: Will and Adrienne Pfaffenberger’s Path to Parenthood

Writer  /  Kara Kavensky Avon residents Will and Adrienne Pfaffenberger began their journey into parenthood through the traditional route and then weighed fertility options, eventually deciding on adoption as their best course of action to become parents. Both Will and Adrienne Pfaffenberger are Avon High School graduates. Adrienne is a pediatric physical therapist and Will has been part of the Smiley Morning Show on WZPL for the past six years. Both are outgoing people and, given Will’s public persona on the radio each weekday morning, being open about their fertility adventures seemed natural. Not that they had much of a ...

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Torchlite’s Shawn Herring

Writer / Kara Kavensky Photographer / Brian Brosmer When Susan Marshall originally shared her idea with Shawn Herring, he instinctively knew she was on to something. Both former ExactTarget employees and both marketing experts, the disruptive digital marketing concept Marshall presented was attractive. Circling in Dustin McCormick, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer, a partnership was formed, and along with backing from investors, including former Salesforce CEO Scott McCorkle, the torch was lit. Marshall the founder and CEO, had the vision for simplifying marketers’ lives by providing the technology and a network of experts to help businesses acquire new customers through ...

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Karen Mangia Creates Success With Less

Writer  /  Kara Kavensky Photographer  /  Amy Unger Karen Mangia, Vice President of Customer and Market Insights for SalesForce, recently discovered an old email exchange with a friend stating how “email was ridiculous and it would never catch on.” This is laughable now, but back then, the most radical idea was a handheld cell phone for talking, not texting. Since her college days, Mangia knew she wanted to work with customer data and took a nontraditional path to a tech career. “I have been fascinated by why people make the choices they make, what are the trends, study the data ...

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Susana Suarez: Zionsville Town Council President

Writer / Kara Kavensky Photographer / Amy Unger Susana Suarez has been fascinated by politics since she was very young. She would spend her mornings reading the paper at her family’s kitchen table in Mexico City, exchanging sections with her father. Depending on the issue, she would follow up with a letter to the current sitting President of the United States. Born and raised in Mexico City, Susana and her family moved to Shaker Heights, Ohio, just outside of Cleveland, when she was 15. She graduated from Ohio State University where she became a member of the OSU Republicans and ...

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