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Shining a Light on Jen Runkle

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Graphic: Shine a Light on Strong Women

Her Traditions strives to be a resource for women’s financial health and to celebrate and support women as we make our dreams a reality. As we focus on the vital role strong women play in our community, we encourage you to nominate women who inspire you.

Whether she is crushing it as a business owner, lifting others as a community builder, or inspiring women through leadership — we want to hear about it! Help us shine a light on strong women by sharing their stories.

Please email stories and nominations to Nicole Shaffer, Director of Her Traditions.


Jen Runkle: Caring for Community and Nurturing Creativity

For Jennifer Runkle, helping people is a calling. While she always actively gave back, it was in 2013 that she took community building to the next level. Following a destructive tornado in Moore, Oklahoma, that ravaged the community, Jennifer launched a drive to get much-needed supplies to people who suddenly found themselves with nothing.

“I was amazed at what we accomplished with some heart and vision,” Jennifer shared. “When I started the drive, donations came pouring in. Then a local truck company donated a truck to help us get everything to Moore.”

In a moment of inspiration, Runkle named the effort Give Moore. The mission to fill the truck with supplies was only the beginning. When Jennifer traveled to Moore to distribute everything, the devastation of the tornado hit the hardest.

While the pain was difficult to witness, it was the dedication of countless volunteers that let her know the community would be alright.

“After experiencing the energy of Give Moore, I was inspired to take a look at my own life and make some changes,” noted Jennifer.

Photo of Jen Runkle
Photo of Jen Runkle with one of her creations

With renewed drive, Jennifer decided to let her passion for creating things lead the way, and she started her own business. At Winterberry House, Jennifer paints, decorates homes, and refurbishes furniture. She continues to give back by donating her artwork to fundraisers to benefit local nonprofits.

While the recent pandemic has slowed her work, Jennifer continues to have a positive attitude. “The hill maybe a little steeper right now, but you just have to keep going,” she states. “There is always a way to thrive.”

 

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