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11 Year Old Shark Tank CEO on Mission to Save Bees, Makes Us All Look Like Slackers

If you wanna feel like an absolute slacker, today’s your lucky day! However, as you embrace your slackerness, you can comfort yourself with the knowledge that the world is not going to hell in a hand basket so long as there are smart, conscientious, and socially-motivated girls like Mikaila Ulmer in it.

Texas-based Ulmer is the founder and CEO (yeah, you heard right) of Bee Sweet Lemonade, a lemonade company she started when she was four. After she was stung by bees twice in one week, Ulmer was terrified of bees. So, her parents suggested she do research on them to become more familiar with them and maybe not be so scared anymore. Through that research, she not only became passionate about bees, but when she learned that bees worldwide are dying off, embraced saving them as her new mission in life.

Using her grandmother’s cookbook, and incorporating local honey into a favorite flax seed lemonade recipe, she entered two children’s entrepreneur events with her new product, Bee Sweet Lemonade! She’s since gone on to be on ABC’s Shark Tank, where she made a deal with an investor last season for $60,000 to place her product in convenience stores.

Her most recent big news? Texas-based chain Whole Foods is now carrying her product through a four-state deal that includes their stores in TX, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana. You can also buy her product over at her website.

What I love most about Ulmer isn’t just that she’s such a focused and driven entrepreneur, but that this is truly a passion for her, and that passion extends beyond making money. She wants to save the bees, and she uses Bee Sweet Lemonade — soon to be re-branded as Me & the Bees Lemonade — to educate people on the plight of bees wherever and however she can. She’s knowledgeable on this topic, and she’s taken that knowledge all over the place. Even Google:

When I see girls like Ulmer, or like Egypt Ufele and her Chubiiline fashion line (who uses her entrepreneurship to educate about bullying), I am filled with so much hope and inspiration. Here’s to all of us figuring out our passions and using them to better the world, as well as ourselves.

(via Jezebel)

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Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former Mary Sue assistant editor from 2015-18. Teresa's returned to play in the TMS sandbox as a freelancer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.