2021 NSW/ACT AusMumpreneur of the Year award finalists

Anneke van den Broek – Rufus & Coco

Anneke van den Broek is the founder and CEO of Rufus & Coco and The Fur Salon. She’s also a mother for Saskia and Saxton.

Having owned more than 40 pets in her life, she often struggled to find high -quality, natural and fashionable products. She saw a gap in the market which fit with her passion for pets, so she made it her mission to fill that gap and become the most trusted household name for pet accessories.

Pets are proven to benefit our physical and mental health, and to bring communities together. Therefore everything Anneke does at Rufus & Coco, is aimed at improving humanity, one pet at a time. With great passion and persistence, Rufus & Coco has grown from start-up to the largest privately-owned pet business in the pet accessories category selling into grocery in Australia and into 9 countries around the world.

Monique Hession – Snuggle Hunny Kids

Five years ago, Monique left a career in accounting to launch Snuggle Hunny Kids (SHK) in her garage despite having no online retail experience. Monique is a creative entrepreneur, with an endless outlet for working to her strengths in Social Media Marketing & Strategy. SHK is now one of the country’s leading online baby brands, with a large following on social media and strong revenue growth year on year. The products have attracted the attention of parents across Australia and internationally offering a high-quality product range of baby and infant products. Monique’s agile, customer-oriented business strategy looks to have been powered by clear, action-oriented leadership that drove phenomenal growth numbers in 2020. Her commitment to sustainability and community is a core tenet of her business that is impressive and a great role model for other businesses.

Yemi Penn – Yemi Penn Ventures

Yemi is a fearless business woman and thought leader on creating your own memo, meaning ‘she’ gets to write the script of her life and she encourages others to do the same.

She is a serial entrepreneur with a common thread of transformation, whether it be transforming Sydney’s rail network as an engineer, transforming physical health in her F45 gym or shifting the perspective of our minds as she supports people in creating a life that they not only want and deserve. More recently Yemi has added documentary producer to her repertoire as she shifts her core life’s purpose to raising the vibration on acknowledging and healing our individual and therefore collective trauma.

Cass Spies – Twisted Healthy Treats

Cass Spies is the CEO of Twisted Healthy Treats. Cass’ career began when she studied a Bachelor of Science majoring in Food Technology, before travelling to London where she then spent 13 years in the Financial Services industry finishing her career on a high as a Global Project Manager. Upon returning to Australia in 2009 with a young family, Cass fulfilled her dreams of starting her own business and Twisted was born (otherwise know as Cass’ 4th Child..!) Fast-forward 10 years, Cass is the CEO and Managing Director of Twisted Healthy Treats. Twisted produces healthy treats that have no-added, or lower levels of sugar, are lower in calories and based on clean, natural recipes. Twisted’s treats are available in 2000 supermarket stores nationally, 5000 school canteens across AUS and NZ and they are now available internationally in the USA and China.

Sarika Singh – Pre Uni College Digital

Sarika Singh is first a loving, loyal and attentive mother of two girls ages 7 and 13.  She began her first business in 2008 when she launched Pre Uni College and has since launched three others – Speaker Club, Writing Club and her most recent, Pre Uni College Digital in March 2020. Sarika remains steadfast in her commitment to help develop the minds and leadership skills of younger generations. She created Pre Uni College Digital to ensure every child receives adequate, yet personalised opportunities to nurture their intellectual curiosity. Pre-Uni’s platform offers live in-person, remote as well as hybrid courses that provide literacy and numeracy education so children can confidently conquer national examinations, scholarship examinations and more. The platform is not only maximised for students but offers parents unique ways to stay involved in their children’s learning experience through syllabus workshops, live classroom visits,24/7 tutor support and reporting. Pre-Uni educators teach at all times so that children receive focused learning rather than mere classroom supervision. 

Natashia Telfer – National Community Care Pty Ltd

At the age of 18, Natashia was diagnosed with stage 4B Cancer. This adversity would be one of many, however this adversity set Natashia of a life altering course. Less than 2 weeks after completing her last round of chemotherapy, and still unsure if she was ‘cured’, Natashia enrolled herself in studies and a Healthcare apprenticeship and started her new path within the Healthcare sector. Natashia knew she was blessed to have received amazing care. This was something she wanted to have an impact on providing others. In 2015 National Community Care Pty Ltd (NCC) was born. Natashia considers NCC as her first born child as there have been many sleepless nights, teething problems, developmental leaps and even tantrums. However, Natashia has raised an amazing community care company that now proudly provides amazing quality to the Canberra community and has been recognised for this across many territory and National platforms.

Jodie Minto – iland co.

Jodie Minto was looking for a way to combine a love of fashion and marketing with a business idea that would free her from corporate life. She came up with the concept of iland co. – a range of ladies’ resort wear that’s vibrant, colourful, and carefree.  In 2014, she poured her energy into mastering online ecommerce and digital marketing to build her online store. Within three years, iland co. was turning a healthy profit and Jodie’s success was being noticed by others in the ecommerce fashion space.  Jodie gradually automated her online store to free her up to pursue other passions.  Driven by a desire to help other women master their own marketing and scale their businesses online, Jodie launched her online business coaching in 2017. She’s an award-winning eCommerce mentor, seven-figure online business owner and speaker who revels in teaching emerging online brands how to crack the code of eCommerce success for a life of uncapped income, flexibility and fun.

Elizabeth Zaki – OneSite Finance

Liz is a mum of two children (8,10) and has been married to Ramez for 16 years. She came to Australia when she was 15 years old on her own with very little English.

Liz graduated from UNSW majoring in Bioprocess Engineering with honours and worked in IT 4 years before she became a mortgage broker. Since she became independent at a very young age, Liz is very good at managing her own finance. She started her mortgage broking business in 2005 with the vision to share her knowledge and educate her clients to help them improve their finance situation. Outside of work, Liz is a certified mentor for new mortgage brokers entering the industry. She also does a lot of work for the community such as playing the piano at her local church every Sunday, raising funds for cancer research, and volunteering at St Canice’s Kitchen to cook for the homeless.

Stacey Morgan – Port Macquarie Performing Arts

Through dance, Port Macquarie Performing Arts are empowering the next generation of courageous and creative young people, ready to impact their community and the world. We provide dance, drama, singing and art classes for students of all ages and abilities. We differentiate ourselves in a crowded market by giving our dancers unique performance opportunities and experiences with industry professionals. We provide dancers of all ages, a nurturing learning environment to foster their love of dance no matter what their experience or ability including specibic classes for children with sensory processing and learning issues.

Through dance we teach life skills such as hard work, determination, teamwork and goal setting. We run mentoring programs for young women in our community, along with a Teacher Trainee program for those students wanting to gain qualibications whilst learning.

Allana Frisken – Muse Pilates Studio

Allana is an entrepreneur with a passion for women’s wellness. Knowing first-hand what it is like to put everyone first and be at the bottom of the food chain so to speak, she set out to create a real difference in the lives of women through her wellness businesses.

Allana is a busy mum of two, Harvey (2) and Poppy (4), two fur babies Po and Lulu, wife to Daniel, with 2 wellness businesses and a team of 20. Muse Pilates Studio “Muse” is a collection of boutique reformer studios where luxe spaces meet friendly, down to earth instructors who don’t take themselves too seriously. Muse was created to be all about community where people can go in and talk to their new Muse friends and get a great workout, all while focussing on nourishing the soul and taking that much needed time to focus on filling up your cup.

Raquel Manning – Blue Diamond Property Group

Raquel Manning is a proud Wailwan Wiradjuri woman, a multi-award-winning Indigenous entrepreneur. When you first meet Raquel the Founder and CEO of Blue Diamond Property Group you will be instantly aware of her down to earth nature.
Behind her beaming smile, there is a woman of enormous integrity, resilience, and knowledge. Raquel is a gifted communicator. professionalism, integrity, and warmth is part of her workday ethic. In business, she is calm, dignified, and dynamite under pressure.Raquel is a woman born and raised in Western Sydney who is a true success from hard work and determination.Raquel gives inspiration to her business platform and community and is living proof women can be successful in a male a dominated industry.

Raquel has produced leading multi million dollar, end to end land acquisition and property development solutions for industry leaders in the residential,retail,commercial,industrial, business broking and financial sectors Raquel currently holds a chair position on the Forever Giving Foundation and devotes her time to various community projects.

Natashja Treveton & Nicole Halton – Inspired EC Pty Ltd

Natashja (Tash) Treveton and Nicole Halton are the co-founders of Inspired EC Pty Ltd, an Australian based Early Childhood training and consultancy company that supports educators and early childhood services nationally and internationally. Together they have authored several books, and both consistently deliver high quality training and support. They also co-founded Inspired Family Day Care and TimberNook Newcastle – a nature play program underpinned by occupational therapy knowledge.

Nicole and Tash are passionate about children having access to natural, risky, and engaging outdoor play spaces, as well as having the opportunity to experience meaningful, respectful relationships with the adults in their lives. The mantra of Inspired EC says it all: We are changing the World for Children.