Sophomore entrepreneur from Rich Township wins business association honor at home – Chicago Tribune

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Camille Weatherspoon may be a little shy, but that hasn’t stopped the high schooler from getting her products into the hands of grateful customers.

Although he is only a sophomore at Rich Township High School, Weatherspoon is already a successful entrepreneur. The 15-year-old founded Exclusive Radiance, selling handmade, high-quality, natural-based beauty products that are not only reliable, but also fun, she said.

Recently, the South Suburban Small Business Association presented Weatherspoon with a Summit Award for starting a business that benefits the community. The annual SSSBA Summit Awards recognize leading businessmen and organizations that have contributed to the economic and cultural growth of the region.

“It is truly an honor to be noticed by the South Suburban Small Business Association,” Weatherspoon said. “Even with the plan I had, I didn’t expect to get this far and be recognized as a young entrepreneur at 15.”

In previous years, the SSSBA recognized senior-level students, but Weatherspoon broke that trend, impressing Don Grimwood, the head of the SSSBA’s Summit Awards committee, as well as its board members who have picked Weatherspoon when she was a sophomore.

“I interviewed Camille and what really stood out to me was her attitude towards helping people,” Grimwood said. “She wasn’t there just to make money and do this for herself. She had skin irritations and things like that and couldn’t find anything on the market, so she created her own thing and realized that there were other young girls who had the same sensitive skin and that she could help them.

Like many people of all ages, Weatherspoon has struggled with her sensitive skin. As her skincare concerns grew, she sought a solution, which others can now also find at www.exclusiveradiance.com.

“My business started because of my sensitive skin issues,” she said. “I was trying to improve my skin, so I started making products and testing them.”

Weatherspoon founded his company amid the COVID-19 pandemic, drawing inspiration from his father’s business ventures as well as those of an aunt to create and sell whipped body butters to nourish and hydrate the skin and body scrubs with sugar to exfoliate the skin.

“My family inspired me because I watched them start their own business,” she said. “I had their full support to launch mine.”

For someone who strives to help others and has a business to promote, Weatherspoon admitted she was a little reserved.

“My biggest challenge has been promoting myself because I’m not really social,” she said. “It becomes difficult to balance all of this, especially when I was working out, but I always take at least two hours a week to devote to my two businesses. I also do nails.

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She hopes to one day focus on helping people find the right balance and beauty in themselves as a psychologist.

“My reason for becoming a psychologist is because I truly believe that if people are willing to get help, they should actually get the help they need,” she said. “They should be able to get the help they need rather than just being given medicine and instead of randomly getting medicine elsewhere.”

His selfless attitude was one of the reasons Weatherspoon won the SSSBA.

“When we talked a little more, she explained that a lot of people turn to drugs to solve their problems and that she wanted to work in psychology, get her doctorate and come up with another solution,” Grimwood said. “She really wants to help people. It’s not just plans for herself, but to help others.

And while her business may help others, her journey may inspire other children like her to follow a similar path.

“We want these children to participate in school activities, after-school activities, community activities and neighborhood activities,” Grimwood said. “We know that by helping them, they can become an example for other children, encourage them and pass them on.”

CR Walker is a freelance journalist for the Daily Southtown.

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