Local student named National Lemonade Day Entrepreneur of the Year
By LYNETTE SOWELL
Pre-Teen Miss Five Hills Briana Liles was named National Lemonade Day Entrepreneur of the Year at the Lemonade Day City Director Conference in Houston on Thursday.
The award was presented by Lemonade Day founder Michael Holthouse and Lemonade Day National President Steven Gordon.
Liles had already been recognized in May as the Fort Hood Area Entrepreneur of the Year, and this is the second time a participant from the Lemonade Day Fort Hood Area program won at the national level.
As a finalist, Liles traveled to Houston, where she learned she had won the award.
“I felt surprised, shocked, and super-duper happy!” Liles said. “I have won things in the past but nothing this big! I mean I am a national winner!”
This was the first time Liles had ever operated a lemonade stand and she is not planning to rest on her laurels as she looks ahead to next May.
“I am already trying to get my locations set up for next year. I want to try more flavors of lemonade at my stand next year, and will definitely be keeping food other than sweets on my menu because of how well it did the first year,” Liles said. “Most of all, I will continue having fun with my stand for as long as it lasts while working to do better and better each year.”
Overall, Liles brought in $975 in revenue from Miss B’s Lemonade stand. She also served serve food at her stand to include lemon cupcakes, lemon bars, hot dogs, chips, and pulled pork sandwiches.
She paid her investors – her parents – first, and then donated approximately $300 to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, which is an organization dedicated to the discovery of a cure or treatment for alopecia areata, an autoimmune skin disease that causes hair loss.
With Liles also wearing the title of Pre-Teen Miss Five Hills, she has made alopecia areata awareness her platform for her year of service. Liles is personally affected by the disease, and she hopes to support others who are also dealing with the illness.
To date, she has raised $1,161.11 for alopecia through Lemonade Day, Bearables Birthday Bash, raffles at community events and collection jars throughout the community.
“We knew Briana was an exceptional girl, and now the world knows it too,” said Lemonade Day Fort Hood Area City Director Amanda Sequeira. “This year, we watched Briana blossom into a sharp, mission oriented entrepreneur. She demonstrated a drive to succeed coupled with the business lessons learned through her Lemonade Day experience, and look where it’s taken her!”
Lemonade Day was held the first weekend in May, with Liles operating her stand in front of the Copperas Cove Walmart, at Heights Lumber, and at the Sprint store in Killeen.
In 2018, more than 60 cities across the country participated in Lemonade Day along with five international cities representing Canada and South Africa.
According to a press release from Lemonade Day Fort Hood Area, each city selects a local Entrepreneur of the Year based on information submitted in the Business Results Form to include reported business statistics, lessons learned and the participant’s Lemonade Day story. The National Lemonade Day office reviews all entries to select the national representative.