Bio: Joanna grew up in Connecticut as a first generation U.S. citizen along with her older sister. Both her parents emigrated from Poland after marrying and provided Joanna with a diverse upbringing and appreciation for different cultures and foods. Joanna played basketball and several other sports from childhood through college and developed a healthy appetite for completion and pushing herself to achieve. Her love for cooking and health conscious attitude eventually took over and lead her and her pup, Lilly to California to pursue a career in nutrition. After dipping her toes in a variety of fields and gaining many different skills, Joanna desired to be closer to the beach and pursue a more laid-back lifestyle. This led her to meet Matthew in Santa Barbara and the rest is history.
Resumé: Joanna earned a degree in Child Development and counseling at the University of Mary Washington in Virginia. While providing in-home therapy to kids and families she came to understand the importance of holistic health and nutrition and its benefits. This inspired her to move to LA and help develop educational programs with underprivileged children. Joanna worked with an organization called Enrich LA, where she would help build school gardens and teach nutrition and cooking classes. She continued her many years in the food industry at a restaurant called STREET, working alongside beloved Chef Susan Feniger, and managing a raw food and health company in West Hollywood, where she worked on brand management, marketing, and even hosted nutritional workshops for parents and children. It was then that Joanna discovered her love of business and realized she was a true entrepreneur at heart. In addition to her expansive food and nutrition experience, Joanna also worked as an assistant for a short film director and celebrity stylist helping with photoshoots, set-up, interviews, and post-production.
HA: What’s your role with the company?
JH: As the CMO I direct the Marketing, Sales and Public Relations. I oversee the marketing and sales team and assist with content creation, coordinate events, designing the website and managing PR and social media. I have a great creative team that I love working with to develop beautiful videos and photos that tell a story and are true to our brand. It’s my role to take Matthew’s vision and translate that to our marketing and sales. As a partner and co-founder of Living Vehicle my role is to ensure the company is able to adapt and respond to the market and ensure that our long term goals of creating a product that allows people to live a life that allows them to pursue their passions in a sustainable way are being carried through. As Matthew’s wife, my role is to support him and keep him on track. We are always scheming about new initiatives and biz development. He has an amazing mind and gift, and it’s so exciting to develop something with him that will outlive our lifetime. I can’t imagine anything more meaningful than working on changing the world with the people you love most.
HA: What’s your favorite part of each work day?
JH: I love how dynamic the work is. One day I could be camping with Matthew, another day testing out the Living Vehicle, then another day coming up with new ideas for product development, discussing the changing landscape of our cities with city planners, or coming together with the entire team to celebrate a birthday at the office with tacos and margaritas. I have never worked with such a solid group of individuals. We really are a family and I’m constantly impressed with how talented, ambitious and fearless everyone is. I also love being able to have my dog with me all the time and how much time and freedom I have to be outdoors and travel. There’s so many things!
Words to live by: You have the power to choose what type of life you want to live. Every risk I’ve taken and life change I’ve made has always paid off and gotten me to a better place. Don’t be afraid to make changes, and don’t be worried about pleasing others.