Every business has an origin story: the moment where it all clicked and made sense. Most of the time, it’s the stuff of myth and legend. Successful businesses rarely fall from the sky and bonk you on the head. Unless, Sir Isaac Newton had it in his mind to bottle gravity and sell it.
For most entrepreneurs, getting from the idea to success is more about force of will than innovation, especially if you work in a niche industry. For Brent Broussard, inspiration came from therapy.
Brent took an interest in his therapist’s beaded bracelet, and his therapist suggested making bracelets might help Brent work on his patience. So Brent got to work, and in 2021, Beads by Brentley was born.
Brent’s bracelets are made with earthy beads like obsidian, lava, turquoise and tiger eyes. Right now, his company is mostly e-commerce end-to-end. He sources the beads online and sells them through Facebook and Shopify, with some inventory sold at Lone Wolf Gatherings in Lafayette.
Brent also operates a nonprofit called Acadiana Vanguard Youth Initiative. The program helps young people on Lafayette’s Northside develop financial literacy skills, as well as life coaching and business coaching. Both the nonprofit and Beads by Brently are housed under Brent’s company Broussard Enterprise Group.
Brent grew up on the Northside and spent years in sales before moving into entrepreneurship.
“Politics is Louisiana’s favorite sport,” the saying goes. But it’s not necessarily a big industry. The landscape for political communications and strategy is relatively narrow and limited to policymakers in Baton Rouge.
Breaking into the business from outside the Capitol is not an easy thing to do. You’ve got to ride a wave of victory to get somewhere in politics, and that can be hard with small-time candidates and causes, who often don’t have big budgets or name recognition.
Azi Yazdi-Kaufman is a political strategist and created the Blue Jay Strategic Consulting Group, a firm she launched in 2023. Azi had worked around communications and marketing for years, but moved officially into political strategy while working to change a piece of legislation that would have prohibited some foreign nationals from owning property in Louisiana. Azi is the daughter of an immigrant and she brought that perspective to her lobbying work.