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Rising Stars of Arvada

The heart of our mission at VoyageDenver is to find the amazing souls that breathe life into our city. In the recent weeks we’ve had the privilege to connect with some of Denver’s finest artists, creatives, entrepreneurs and rabble rousers and we can’t begin to express how impressed we are with our city’s incredibly deep talent pool. Check out Arvada’s rising stars below.

Rayna McGinnis

Prior to becoming a web designer, I was a professional adventure elopement photographer but in August of 2017, I became very sick. I laid in bed for three months as I watched my photography business and life as I knew it crumbles. I didn’t know at the time that I had undiagnosed Celiac disease and though I hadn’t willingly consumed wheat in almost five years, my family was consuming it and there was a lot of cross-contamination going on. Those little bits of gluten that I was consuming day to day caused massive amounts of damage to my autonomic nervous system. The amount of stress that goes with being an elopement photographer didn’t help either. Read more>>

Logan Firth

I have always had a deep love for improvised music. After moving to Colorado in 2015, I quickly learned that Denver shares this same love. I met dozens of talented players with unique musical voices that were begging to come together. I had the space and the means to host and so I decided to create a YouTube channel that would highlight Denver’s improv talent. The initial idea was that I would organize a weekly open jam that lasted 1-3 hours and broadcast it live on YouTube. This gave the players ample time to read each other and find their own groove. It also gave the players an immediate recording of what happened–so we didn’t lose any amazing spontaneous jams. In the true spirit of improvised music–covers and standards were prohibited. Read more>>

Alexa Johnson

I think my story resembles that of a lot of entrepreneurs and business owners. I took a pretty unexpected route to get me where I am today. High Country Brides is a far cry from where I started, but now that I can look back retrospectively, I see it all lining up to put me where I am today. My childhood through college career aspiration was actually to be a large animal veterinarian. I went to Colorado State, did every science class under the sun (plus a business degree), moved to Kentucky to work in the industry…and fell out of love with it. Read more>>

William Briggs

I have always had a drive for storytelling. From creating role-playing game campaigns to hand-drawing “flip-it” cartoons to taping-over the erasure heads on cassette recorders to create our own crowds in radio plays, my friends and I have always created as a hobby. My cousins got me into film-making in childhood with story-driven silent films on Super-8 that segued to “talkies” on VHS. Later I worked cameras for a live NEWS broadcast in my hometown, did voice-overs for commercial spots, and was a local radio DJ. But I specialized in computer programming and focused on a career as a computer engineer on virtual reality, scientific visualization, military simulations, and 3D games. Read more>>

Athan Miller

In 2006, I was working as a social worker as a residential program director for people with developmental disabilities for Scott Parker and Jack, my husband, was working in real estate. I wanted to do more with my job and Jack found a coffee shop for sale in Arvada. He suggested Scott and I purchase the coffee shop and employ people with developmental disabilities. Thus grew our vision – to prove it is possible to run a successful, sustainable business and employ people with developmental disabilities. We started in a small 300 square foot coffee shop in 2007 in The Village of Five Parks in Northwest Arvada and immediately hired three individuals with developmental disabilities. We discovered that we wanted to be able to hire more people with developmental disabilities but our coffee shop was too small. We had the opportunity to move into a larger space and we were able to hire 12 more people with developmental disabilities. Read more>>

Emory Dinner

I was born and raised in Greeley, CO, and was always interested in worldly affairs. I had the opportunity to visit the Galapagos Islands at age 11 and this forever inspired a love for learning, cultures, travel, and the fight for equity. I earned my B.A. from The University of Kansas in Environmental Policy followed by a Masters in Teaching from the University of Northern Colorado. I taught 3rd grade at Asbury Elementary in Denver Public Schools for ten years. Dedication and hard work fueled my years as an educator, mentor, and Senior Team Lead. I was honored to work at an incredible school, filled with student-engagement and a supportive community. However, international development has always been a true passion, so when the opportunity to join Soles4Souls surfaced, I jumped at the chance. Read more>>

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