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Heather Duncan: 20 in Their 20s (Young & Prosperous)

Co-Founder & Creative Producer Three Leaves, Valencia Age: 26 Three Leaves produces videos and commercials for companies and organizations. Services range from planning a marketing campaign through production, editing and final distribution. Biggest Challenge Starting a Business? Taking care of our clients first while building our infrastructure. We really didn’t start out to create a company – we just started out using our skills to help people and, all of a sudden, we realized where we were at and that we had to go back and fill in the gaps to make sure we were building on a solid foundation. It took a lot of work and sleepless nights.  Motivation to Start Company: Helping people and companies communicate their stories and connect through new media. My co-founder and I met in film school and were both studying and working in the industry when we began creating small local projects. People saw our work and word got around about what we were doing and soon we had more people coming to us asking for us to do the same for them. At that point, we decided to officially start our business. Looking back, this was such an exciting way for our company to get started because it happened so organically. Most Interesting Aspect of Job: No two days are ever the same! I love getting the opportunity to meet new people and learn about their businesses and organizations. It’s really eye-opening to hear so many different stories and find out what makes others passionate about what they are doing in their lives. Personality on the Job: I am a perfectionist who is always ready for a challenge and I think it is those two things that really help me in my work as a business owner and a producer. On a daily basis, I am juggling so many things, from the creative to the administrative, that wanting to pay attention to all of the details while still being motivated by the challenge of the big picture lends itself to being a creative entrepreneur.  Most Memorable Experience: Last year, we had the opportunity to create a video for the Salvation Army that profiled an individual who had successfully gone through one of their drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs. It was such an incredible experience to get to know him and to help him tell his story on camera so that it could inspire others. It really made me take a step back and truly see what we are doing and what this is all about — using technology to bring people together through the art of storytelling. For this same project, we also created a public service spot with actress, activist and author Tippi Hedren, so having the opportunity to work with her was also an awesome experience.  Entrepreneurial Advice: Trust yourself. Receiving advice and mentorship is made easier by technology and it is so important to hear different perspectives, but don’t let that get in the way of your goal. At the end of the day, trust your gut and take the leap – just make sure you have the “inventory” to back it up!

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