When we personalize our efforts to engage the world, the positive impact we create is powerful. Anyone can hold up a sign, march shoulder to shoulder with others in the name of a particular cause, or reel off a bevy of slogans and adages we believe illustrate solidarity with an issue. This observation does not denigrate such efforts. Being an informed member of our global community is laudable. Pouring our imaginative powers into reshaping the world, however, opens the door to affecting the change we seek.
Lori Myren-Manbeck embodies that ideal. The founder and CEO of Inclusivi-tee and conceptualizer of Shareables began her journey towards affecting global change through her imaginative efforts long before the 2017 founding of her company. Her upbringing, steeped in progressive, inclusive theology taught her about equity, acceptance, faith as action, and justice, forming the bedrock of her life. Following her parent’s example to create a better world, Myren-Manbeck earned her Ph.D. in psychology and began working as a geriatric psychologist. She felt comfortable and rewarded in her career, but remained open to new ideas and changing information, opening ever-evolving vistas of possibility.
A confluence of the aforementioned formative factors alongside the tumult of late 2016 birthed Inclusivi-tee. Myren-Manbeck surveyed the mood of the nation and her wont for putting her beliefs into action lead her to change direction and re-evaluate her purpose. Inclusivi-tee sprung from a renewed desire to protect the earth and her neighbors alike and she brought her passion to bear on the burgeoning project. She defined her goals as improving the world through the sale of ecofriendly t-shirts promoting kindness and justice, giving back, and organizing community events. Myren-Manbeck recruited top-flight artists for the t-shirt designs aiding in the creation of trendsetting and earth friendly fashion.
Over the past two years, Myren-Manbeck realized that sustainable fashion is more than just using ecofriendly material. It is literally changing the way we design and think about fashion. She also realized that t-shirts, designed as they are now, are not the fashion of the future. Using these realizations as her inspiration, Myren-Manbeck came up with a collection called Shareables, a sustainable array of biodegradable clothing and accessories designed to reduce fashion’s negative impact on the world. Shareables accomplishes this by creating one item, such as a jacket or shirt, with a score of different interchangeable looks. The design aesthetic of Shareables clothing and accessories emphasizes stylish artistic designs, ecofriendly materials, and fun while still promoting the same socially conscious messaging that is part of Inclusivi-tee’s worldview.
This isn’t a company in it for the money. Consumers are supporting the environment anytime they make a purchase; self-aggrandizement is anathema to Inclusivi-tee’s mission. They donate 50% of their profits ad are always searching for other organizations and companies who share their commitment to progressive ideals without ever striking a dogmatic or strident note. These are not billboards printed on sustainable cloth. They are, instead, fun and aware fashion statements.
The lessons Myren-Manbeck learned from her parents—kindness, faith as action, inclusion, love, and acceptance—are alive and well in her life. She backs up her personal beliefs through her actions and choices rather than by parroting a variety of talking points; she personifies the time-tested advice of being the change you seek. The lessons of her life are rife through everything she does; what she gleaned from a bullying brother, parenthood, academia, and her professional life shows up in each new endeavor. She embraces the cause of humanity in all its guises and, through Inclusivi-tee and Shareables, engages the world in a manner to which we should all aspire
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