Meet the Founding Fempreneurs

These professional female business owners have a combined 125+ years of entrepreneurial expertise in accounting, business, finance, cyber security, marketing, graphic design, psychology, coaching, health & wellness & more! Collectively we share in the belief that we are "Better Together" and can do more and grow faster when we work together.


Lisa Shapiro

DCfempreneur Founder & CEO

A native Washingtonian, Lisa Shapiro holds a BA in Psychology and Master’s in Educational Psychology from George Mason University. Professionally, she has decades of experience in communications, writing, research, digital marketing, and social media. She is a natural community organizer and integrator with a passion for connecting others. A self-described serial entrepreneur who started her own business at age 18, Lisa launched DCfempreneur to connect with other female entrepreneurs to help impact and grow their businesses to make them more purposeful, profitable and sustainable. In addition to DCfempreneur, she is the founder of several other local groups, including NoVa Entrepreneur & Small Business Networking, The NoVa Planner Society, and PowerSheets Accountability.

Lisa Shapiro
(703) 945-0058


Mary Sue Dahill

Founding Member

Known as "The Technology Matchmaker", Mary Sue is passionate about creating kick-ass systems that enable Fempreneurs to enjoy the independence and freedom of business ownership through automation and the use of technology. With a Masters degree in IT, she has learned first hand that many small business owners are often great at what they do, but many don’t have the skill, interest or time it takes to really learn how to make technology work for them to streamline their business systems. Mary Sue understands that all businesses want to increase their revenue. Her expertise is helping you leverage technology and automation to make that possible. The most important resource of a small business is TIME. With streamlined efficient systems you have more time to serve more clients, thus bringing in more revenue. 

Mary Sue Dahill, Technology Guru for Small Businesses
Work Smarter Digital
(703) 310-9515
Work Smarter Digital

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Sandy Bishop

Founding Member

Sandy dabbled in real estate for 14 years before taking a leap to become a full-time REALTOR(r), leaving the corporate finance world to focus on her passion for helping people achieve the American Dream to become homeowners. She is an advocate of building wealth through home ownership. In her first year as a full time agent, she sold more than $6 mill in homes. She maintains her CPA designation. In her free time she enjoys playing with her standard poodles and travelling as much as possible.

Sandy Bishop, Realtor
The Advon Group at eXp Realty, LLC

(703) 216-6296


Melissa Maillett

Founding Member

Melissa is a personal branding photographer who specializes in helping creative entrepreneurs and businesses elevate their brand and marketing presence. As your "visual storytelling partner" Melissa helps business owners uplevel their brand and connect with their audience to grow their business. She helps to capture your brand story to showcase your business. Melissa left the corporate world after many years in PR & Marketing to become a creative entrepreneur. She has found her passion is in helping others build businesses with her camera and strategic insight.

Melissa Maillett Photography
(703) 850-7212


Jennifer Crawford

Founding Member

Jennifer Crawford started her first business at the age of 19 with $75, and grew it to a million dollar company. She currently owns two companies: Sparent, a virtual agency staffed entirely by stay-at-home moms, and PowHer Box, a localized subscription box filled with products & services from women-owned businesses. She is the founder of DC PodFest, and The Improv Imps which represent two of her passions (podcasts & improv).

Jennifer Crawford
(703) 725-0777

DeDee Cai

DeDee Cai

Founding Member

DeDee Cai is the founder and holistic business strategist of FIT TO PROFIT, a company that utilizes her expertise in psychology, cognitive science, holistic wellness, physical training, and business to help executive leaders and entrepreneurs attain peak performance. She has owned and operated several brick and mortar businesses, working in the health and wellness industry for over a decade, learning how to get herself physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually fit. She married her love for living an optimal lifestyle, and business, to create FIT TO PROFIT. Her vision is to empower everyone to realize his or her true potential by making mentorship and coaching accessible to everyone, worldwide.

DeDee Cai, Founder Fit to Profit, LLC
(571) 214-5625

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Farah Broom

Founding Member

Farah Broom is a Regional Vice President and Registered Principal with Primerica Financial Services. She has an MBA in Finance from Johns Hopkins University as well as her Financial Planning Certificate from Georgetown University. She is a licensed investment professional in VA, MD, and DC. She is passionate about financial literacy and her mission is to help families become properly protected, debt free and financially independent.

Farah Broom, Primerica Financial Services
(703) 898-7828


Nicole Maaguo

Founding Member

Nicole Maaguo is the Founder & CEO of Cultivate Ink, LLC a boutique software consultancy. As a woman in tech, she grew tired of watching women be undervalued and underestimated at work. So she created the leadership program, Ambition Unboxed, and the podcast, Ambition Out Loud, to empower women's rise to top leadership positions. Nicole is also a stem-loving mom of 3, caffeinated optimist, distracted crafter, and persistent dreamer.

Nicole Maaguo, Founder Cultivateink
(312) 259-9319

Digital Citizenship Consultant

Densie DeRosa

Founding Member

Denise founded Cyber Sensible in 2015 to provide online safety and digital citizenship advice to organizations, families, parents, youth and schools. She believes in the importance of digital literacy education for all. She is dedicated to empowering her clients with the tools needed to embrace digital technologies in meaningful, creative, and positive ways. Denise focuses her discussions on practical ways to both manage and capitalize on technology with internet safety tips, lessons in healthy tech habits, social media strategies and digital reputation management.

Denise DeRosa



Molly Ruland

Founding Member

Disruption and determination fuel Molly’s perspective on life. She is an innovative problem-solver with an instinct for fostering creativity with storytellers and makers to grow and share their voice. Heartcast Media was created when Molly recognized the need to support entrepreneurs in their content goals and passion to help them "amplify their voices" globally. Molly’s idea worth sharing is that "Listening is the Revolution”. She is a native of the Washington, D.C. region and lifelong optimist.

Molly Ruland
(310) 809-4210

Phyllis Simon Law, Intellectual Property Law

Phyllis Simon

Founding Member

Simon Law, PLLC is a boutique Intellectual Property law firm that believes that small businesses should have access to affordable legal advice. Phyllis Simon is an attorney with over a decade of experience in intellectual property law, representing domestic and foreign clients. Her varied experiences and depth of knowledge across several technology areas allow her to develop IP strategies that fit the needs of individual small businesses.

Phyllis Simon, Simon Law, PLLC
(510) 388-4207