Villagers turn healthy living philosophy into Detroit Vegan Soul biz

Kirsten Ussery and Erika Boyd aren't just opening Detroit Vegan Soul because they have always wanted to own their own business or become bigger stakeholders in Detroit. The two women live in The Villages.

"This is a passion and a mission to help people live healthier lives," Ussery says.

The women have both watched family members pass away partly because of poor living choices. That inspired them to become vegans, which means they abstain from eating and using animal products. Shortly after making that lifestyle change, they went to a vegan soul food restaurant in Chicago and became inspired entrepreneurs.

"We loved the food and realized we can do this," Ussery says. "We can give up meat and chicken and all that stuff and have tasty food."

The pair recently completed D:hive's BUILD program, which specializes in providing the basic education needed to start a business. They are using that to launch Detroit Vegan Soul.

Boyd, a natural hair stylists, and Ussery, media director for City Council President Charles Pugh, are focusing on building the business as a catering service at first. They aspire to open their own restaurant within the next year or two. They are looking at place in The Villages, Midtown and the Livernois business district.

Source: Kirsten Ussery, co-founder of Detroit Vegan Soul
Writer: Jon Zemke

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