Juliette Winningham’s nonprofit organization, the FreeBird Foundation of Evergreen, Colorado, was created to help better the lives of needy families and children in Colorado and throughout the country.
On April 1, 2020, Winningham’s foundation released its first children’s book, Rocky Mountain High. This book by Juliette Winningham and co-written by Nicolas Kistler is planned to be the first in a thirty-part series, Bruno’s Amazing Adventures.
Bruno is a friendly Bernese Mountain Dog. In the story, he and his canine friends help children understand the importance of camping and hiking safety in the outdoors. Winningham wants to encourage children to play outside but to make sure that they are taking all necessary precautions when they go out into the woods.
Juliette Winningham formerly worked in the energy industry. When she was in the industry, she cultivated a network of business partners and potential supporters for her nonprofit foundation. She believes in conducting herself with integrity and respect at all times. Taking care to network and to explore all possible funding avenues has helped her nonprofit succeed in a competitive environment.
Juliette Winningham is making a difference in Colorado. Her foundation’s efforts have begun to support the neediest children and to make sure they will have happy and successful lives when they are grown. The book series Bruno’s Amazing Adventures will provide entertainment and valuable information for children while raising money for their less-fortunate counterparts.
What was your best/favorite subject in school?
My best subject in school was science. I loved experimenting, and I loved learning how the natural world worked. I found my niche in physics, and I really enjoyed learning about how forces like gravity act on the everyday world. Science led its way to the engineering field, where I worked for most of my career.
What was your first job?
My first job was babysitting. I have to confess that I didn’t really enjoy babysitting. It felt to me like it was about constantly keeping up with children’s demands and complaints. I babysat for a few summers, and then I got a job working in a restaurant. That was much more stimulating, even though it was hard work waiting tables. I learned that if you were a people person, you had a better chance of getting good tips.
Where and how did you first get into the industry you currently work in?
I got into the nonprofit sphere just a few years ago, after I left my previous job. I opened my nonprofit here in my hometown of Evergreen, Colorado.
How have those jobs prepared you for what you do now?
I believe that waiting tables is great preparation for a productive working career. You have to be ready to give a great deal of energy to your task, and you need to be ready to bring a smile to every new table even when you are tired. I believe that being kind is the foundation of business success.
Describe the best day of work you’ve ever had.
My best day of work was when we released our book series, Bruno’s Amazing Adventures. When we released the book, we were not sure whether it would succeed, but it has done very well so far. I enjoyed sharing a creative pursuit with the world, as well as helping to fund my foundation.
For a few months, I was nervous about releasing the book. I had a little bit of impostor syndrome, and I worried that I didn’t have a realistic view of my chance for success. Happily, I found that there was a market for our book and that I would be able to succeed with it.
How do you keep yourself motivated?
I don’t need external motivation. My motivation comes from within. I am motivated to help people and to make sure that I leave the world a better place than I found it. These principles have carried over from my time in industry and have become even more important as I have shifted to a nonprofit career.
What kind of business ideas excite you most?
I love to explore new business ideas. Right now, I am talking about opening a restaurant with my business partner and using its proceeds to help fund the foundation.
Have you ever tried any unorthodox techniques to attract attention to your business?
I have not had to try any unorthodox techniques to attract attention. Regular online and social media advertising have been very helpful, together with local TV news and print advertisements. When we get the word out about our organization, people are moved to give.
What personal achievement are you most proud of?
I am proud of my nonprofit organization. I hope that the FreeBird Foundation will continue to make a big difference in the lives of children and families who need help.
What wisdom would you have liked to share with yourself when you first started out?
I would like to tell myself that I would be happiest if I was giving back to the community. Sometimes, when I was working in the energy industry, I lost sight of what was the most important thing in my life. Giving back is a huge part of who I am, and when I was concentrating more on my own success, I was not fulfilled as a person.