Meet Kourtney Terry, gourmet baby food producer + Aviatra project manager
December 7, 2022
There’s no one way to be an entrepreneur.
You don’t have to look a certain way, operate in a particular industry, pursue specific education, grow up in a particular household, or spend your free time nurturing any particular hobbies — entrepreneurs grow from all walks of life.
In a new video series we are excited to launch today, entrepreneurs, founders, and small business owners from across the Dayton Region share their individual stories in order to break down those pervading stereotypes about who can or can’t be an entrepreneur.
They proudly declare, “I Am an Entrepreneur” — and you can be, too.
Kourtney Terry had it all — a beautiful family, big house, a good-paying job in corporate healthcare.
But she wasn’t happy.
The realization led her down a path of discovery, at the end of which, she launched her company, Taste-T-Love Baby Food.
“I wasn’t born to go to work so I could pay my bills, and then go to sleep and wake up and do the same thing the next day,” she said. “If I’m not passionate about what I’m doing, then I’m wasting my time here on this Earth. It made me dig deeper to figure out what it was that was going to make me happy.”
Kourtney had just given birth to her third child when she began to seriously contemplate a career change. She was applying to jobs in other healthcare systems, but nothing sparked her interest. She cried, prayed, fasted. Then two friends in opposite parts of the country suggested she start a baby food business.
They’d seen her share photos of the food she’d started making for her son.
“There was a lot of opportunity, there was a need. There’s a lot of people like me in Dayton, who work full-time, or even if you don’t work full-time and you’re a stay-at-home mom or a parent, there is a need for fresh and healthy food in general,” Kourtney said. “When it comes to baby food, it’s twice that, because you’re introducing a healthy way of living to a new generation, literally.”
Tapping Into Aviatra Accelerators
“There is a facade that can people can put on sometimes about being an entrepreneur, like it’s this glam, fun life, and you work for yourself,” Kourtney said.
Initially, being a new business owner was fun, fresh, new, she recalled. Designing a logo, crafting recipes, figuring out packaging, brought her happiness. Then she realized she had to figure out marketing, find customers, hone in on her target market.
“If I had paid attention to, or if I had gave in to the disappointment of that reality, I wouldn’t be in business today,” she said.
She reached out for help — and found it at Aviatra Accelerators.
“When I decided that I needed to walk away from my job, Aviatra was that pillow for me,” Kourtney said. “Aviatra taught me or refreshed me in every aspect of how to make my business successful. It was that comfort that I needed to just get out and fly and be all right.”
Today, Kourtney is stepping into a new project manager role with the organization to bring Aviatra’s programing to the Dayton region.
Kourtney’s oldest daughter dreams of following her mother’s footsteps to become a business owner.
“It is really just impacting them to know that they can do anything that they put their mind to. They can do anything that they want,” she said.
And so can you, she adds.
“And you can make a living doing something that you love. You can, that’s what we were put on this Earth for, is purpose, Kourtney said. “Even if you feel like you don’t have all the resources or information, if you have a passion or purpose for something, just do it. ”
Take that first step — and then be hungry.
“Be hungry for information and education because it’s one thing to start a business, but starting a business and being an entrepreneur is not depending on other people, it’s depending on yourself,” she said. “You have to constantly be hungry for knowledge and information in order to keep moving forward and growing your business.”
“My name is Kourtney Terry, and I am an entrepreneur.”