Workin’ It 2011

2011’s Red Hot Entrepreneurs

“If you don’t swing the bat, you’ll never hit a home run,” says Hannah Lavon. “Life is too short. No regrets.”Keeping it sunny side up is the mantra at Hooray Hoopla, Lavon’s fun product development and gift company based in New York. Founded in 2007 with her then-girlfriend (now business partner) Ashley Connors, Hooray Hoopla began with a line of kitschy-cool paper products. But an overly-amorous guy at a bar gave Lavon the push to go after her next creation (after she rejected his advances, of course): the popular Predator vs. Prey animal mittens. The whimsical pairs of dueling animals—for example, Whale vs. Fish or Lion vs. Gazelle—has taken off; maybe you’ve seen the mittens featured on CNN Money, Daily Candy and AOL Small Business. This winter, Hooray Hoopla is launching a highly anticipated kid’s product line and just launched a new Web site, What’s the secret to her success? “Always be friendly,” says Lavon. “If people think you are a genuine person and like what you do, they will have no problem hooking you up with a friend to help out.”

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