• Columnists

Marga Fripp, Founder Empowered Women International

Marga Fripp is the Founder and President of Empowered Women International.

The award-winning social entrepreneur, and international consultant in art marketing and entrepreneurship with a focus on women, is a former journalist and a native of Romania with over 17 years of experience in solving social problems through the arts, innovation and entrepreneurship.

Fripp is passionate about training, coaching and inspiring women artists, artisans and creative entrepreneurs to pursue their passions. She worked with thousands of women in the US and internationally, and helped them to start up or grow businesses that fuel innovation, opportunity and social change.

In May 2002, Marga created Empowered Women International to give voice and create entrepreneurial opportunities for immigrant, refugee and other marginalized women. Over the past ten years, Marga’s effective and passionate leadership turned EWI from a volunteer-run program to an award-winning organization with more than 3,500 supporters, over 2,500 women beneficiaries, and more than $1 million generated in donated services.

Empowered Women International was named “one of the best small charities in the Greater Washington region“ by the Catalogue for Philanthropy.

Marga and her work have been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, Alexandria Gazette, WETA and have appeared on The Voice of America Television and WUSA 9News, among others. She received many awards including Living Legends of Alexandria, (Nominee), 2011, Arts Build Communities Award 2010 by the Virginians for the Arts, Alex Awards 2009 by Alexandria Commission for the Arts, the Enterprise Award, Catalogue for Philanthropy 2008, Virginia House and Senate Commendation, 2006, Making a Difference Award, Soroptimist International, Arlington, 2006, the Cultural Affairs Award, the Alexandria Commission on Women, 2005, and the Governor of Maryland’s Award for Service and Volunteerism, 2003.

About Empowered Women International

Empowered Women International is an award-winning nonprofit organization that channels the entrepreneurial drive and creative talents of high-potential immigrant, refugee, and low-income women in the Greater Washington DC Metro Area into micro-businesses that create jobs, provide sustainable incomes, and allow them to integrate into the community and pursue the American Dream.

We offer a holistic model of empowerment and use the power of the arts to bring people together, empower women, and build multicultural understanding. Art has exceptional storytelling and healing qualities and transcends language, cultural, and economic barriers.

Economic and self-empowerment are powerful tools to liberate and transform each woman, so she can achieve independence and self-sufficiency. EWI’s strategy is to empower the whole woman, not only teaching her the skills she needs to launch and grow a business, but using peer-to-peer relationships, a mentor family and a network of support that helps women build confidence, connect in the community, and recognize their power as changemakers.

Check out our monthly series of women entrepreneurs who are not afraid to dream big, embrace chance, and overcome adversity. If you know someone who can benefit from our services, send her our way. To reach me, email Marga C. Fripp, EWI founder and president at margacfripp@ewint.org.

If people like you they’ll listen to you; if they trust you, they’ll do business with you.”

– Zig Ziglar

The best reason to start an organization is to create a product or service to make the world a better place.”

– Guy Kawasaki

Things don’t change. You change your way of looking, that’s all.”

– Carlos Castaneda

Are you willing to help other people succeed even when it’s not a requirement of your job to be of assistance?”

– Steven Schussler

With ordinary talents and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable.”

– Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which obstacles vanish.”

– John Quincy Adams

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”

– William Butler Yeats

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.”

– President Calvin Coolidge

Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, ‘What’s in it for me?’”

– Brian Tracy

You don’t love someone because of their looks or their clothes or their car. You love them because they sing a song only your heart can understand.”

– L.J. Smith

Never never never never give up.”

– Winston Churchill

As each woman realizes her power, she transforms the world.”

– Patrice Wynne, WomanSpirit Sourcebook

Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles distinguishes the strong soul from the weak.”

– Thomas Carlyle

Your own words are the bricks and mortar
of the dreams you want to realize.
 The words you choose and their use establish the life you experience.”

– Sonia Croquette

How do you stay resilient? It’s about momentum. Like riding a bicycle. If you stop you fall over. So I keep pedaling.”

– Diane Lane

Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity.”

– Ray Bradbury

To follow, without halt, one aim: There’s the secret of success.”

– Anna Pavlova

The man who acquires the ability to take full possession of his own mind may take possession of anything else to which he is justly entitled.”

– Andrew Carnegie

The great use of life is to spend it on something that will outlast it.”

– William James

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”

– Jimi Hendrix

Tolerance and patience should not be read as signs of weakness. They are signs of strength.”

– The Dalai Lama

Do not be afraid of mistakes, providing you do not make the same one twice.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

4oz tequila + 1oz TripleSec + 2oz lime juice + 1oz simple syrup (sugar=water), 1 cup crushed ice. Shake + dance around the kitchen.

– Avenida Margarita

If you wish success in life, make perseverance your bosom friend, experience your wise counselor, caution your elder brother, and hope your guardian genius.”

– Joseph Addison

There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”

– Leonard Cohen

This is the age when magical technologies make more and more radically fun ideas plausible, even easy. You’re only limited by your creativity.”

– Martha Beck

The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do one thing every day that scares you.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

I may not be able to change what takes place, but I can always choose to change my thinking.”

– Michelle Sedas

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.”

– Robert Louis Stevenson

A lot of people have ideas, but few decide to do something about them now. Not next week. But today.”

– Nolan Bushnell, founder, Atari

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

– Martin Luther King Jr.

Running that first shop taught me business is not financial science; it’s about trading.”

– Anita Roddick, founder, The Body Shop

The follow-your-gut mentality of the entrepreneur has the potential to take you anywhere you want to go or run you right out of business.”

– Bill Rancic, "The Apprentice"

Part of your destiny is to live in the zone of maximum satisfaction.”

– Martha Beck

If my mind can conceive it, and my heart can believe it, I know I can achieve it.”

– Jesse Jackson

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of another.”

– Charles Dickens

Speaking more than one language is no longer just an asset in today’s job market; it is a requirement.”

– Tom Adams, CEO, Rosetta Stone

If you were independently wealthy and never had to work a day in your life, would you still choose to spend your time attempting to become a successful entrepreneur?”

– Steven Schussler

We are all of us born with a letter inside us, and that only if we are true to ourselves, may we be allowed to read it before we die.”

– Douglas Coupland

Many people prefer to play it safe when it comes to business matters. Are you willing to take risks in the pursuit of entrepreneurial success?”

– Steven Schussler

No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself, or to get all the credit for doing it”

– Andrew Carnegie

The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”

– Carl Rogers

History is a relentless master. It has no present, only the past rushing into the future. To try to hold fast is to be swept aside.”

– John F. Kennedy

Friendship is the only cement that will hold the world together.”

– Woodrow Wilson

Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.”

– Leon Joseph Suenens

Don’t wait for someone else to lead you to your right life; that privilege—and responsibility—is yours alone.”

– Martha Beck

Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

– Christopher Robin to Pooh

I will pay more for the ability to deal with people than any other ability under the sun.”

– John D. Rockefeller

Don’t follow your dreams. Chase them.”

– Richard Dumb