Women in Business Q&A: Shauna Martin, CEO and Founder, Daily Greens

06/01/2015 08:41 am ET | Updated Jun 01, 2016

Shauna Martin is CEO and founder of Daily Greens, a raw, cold-pressed green juice company based in Austin, Texas.

Raised in Norman, Arkansas a small town west of Hot Springs, Shauna moved to Texas to practice corporate law after obtaining her BA from the University of Central Arkansas and her JD from the University of Arkansas School of Law.

Shauna has over 18 years of experience as a corporate attorney, and has obtained a variety of awards recognizing her work, which includes technology law, mergers and acquisitions, financing, and corporate matters. She has served as an Executive and General Counsel for a number of large international companies, including and GENBAND, an international telecom equipment manufacturer. Although Daily Greens is now her full-time gig, Shauna co-founded Grable Martin Fulton PLLC in 2013, otherwise known as the, where she continues as a member today.

In 2005, Shauna was diagnosed with breast cancer. With a young family to care for, she turned to daily green juicing to recover from the trauma of multiple surgeries and the toxic effects of chemotherapy. After discovering its life-restoring power, she made it her mission to get a green juice into the hands of everyone that she can every day, so that all can thrive as she has.

Founding Drink Daily Greens LLC in 2012, Shauna now works to accomplish this mission through crafting new and delicious recipes and selling her Daily Greens, which are now sold in retail outlets nationwide.

Shauna is an active advocate for breast cancer issues, serving on the Board of the Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas for the past nine years. She is also a founding member of the Pink Ribbon Cowgirls, a social network of young breast cancer survivors, and a frequent speaker and chair of breast cancer fundraising awards. In furtherance of Shauna's mission, 1 % of sales of Daily Greens are granted to fund organizations that provide services to young women and underserved women battling breast cancer.

Shauna is also the author of the Daily Greens 4-Day Cleanse profiling her journey to health and wellness and the Daily Greens recommended seasonal cleanse, and a frequent speaker about the healing power of food. One percent of the royalties from the Daily Greens 4-Day Cleanse will also be donated to organizations that provide services to young women battling breast cancer.

Today, Shauna lives in Austin, Texas, drinking her greens, with her husband, Kirk, and their 10 year old son, Cooper.

How has your life experience made you the leader you are today?
I know that all the ups and downs that life has brought me up to this point were to prepare me for what I am doing today. I feel truly blessed to finally be doing what I was put on this earth to do! Nearly ten years ago, I was diagnosed with an aggressive Stage II breast cancer as a young mom of a one-year-old in my early thirties. At that time, I was also in the midst of ramping up my legal career. However with the diagnosis, I was forced to become aware of life's brevity and unpredictability. This realization has helped me to focus on the important things in life - both personally and professionally. It's what inspired me to begin Daily Greens. My laser focus on important business objectives is key to the way I lead Daily Greens.

How has your previous employment experience aided your tenure at Daily Greens?
Before Daily Greens, I practiced corporate law for over 18 years, mostly as an in-house Executive and General Counsel for start-ups as well as several large technology companies. Working directly with the Executive teams of these companies provided me with invaluable business experience building and running a company. I have relied heavily on this experience to grow and scale Daily Greens.

What have the highlights and challenges been during your tenure at Daily Greens?
My mission through Daily Greens is to craft quality greens for the whole family and empower others to take control of their health through nutrition. From the beginning, it has warmed my heart to hear how Daily Greens has helped others overcome various health issues, just as juicing greens helped heal and strengthen my body after breast cancer. I will also never forget the first time I saw a full display of Daily Greens at a retailer. It was a symbol that others are ready to make their health a priority.

One of the biggest challenges was keeping up with the demand over the course of the past two and a half years as we quickly outgrew two different production facilities. In the past two and a half year period we went from producing 60 bottles a week for the farmers market to producing thousands of bottles a week sold in 1000+ retailers nationwide.

What advice can you offer to women who want to start their own business?
Always do something that you believe in with your entire heart and soul. Starting a business is hard, and some days you will want to give up. But if you believe in what you are doing 110 percent, your unwavering faith in your company's mission will get you through those tough days.

What is the most important lesson you've learned in your career to date?
Always do something you are passionate about. If you find yourself in a position you are not passionate about, it's time to find a new job that you are passionate about.

How do you maintain a work/life balance?
I actually feel the most balanced in life when I am pursuing my passions. When I am throwing myself into my work passionately, I do not always have as much time at home with my family as I would like. However, by being passionate about my work and doing my job well, I believe I'm setting the best possible example for my son. Though, it may mean I won't always be home for dinner.

What do you think is the biggest issue for women in the workplace?
I believe that sometimes a lack of confidence and fear of confrontation in the workplace tend to hold some women back. In our other roles, we tend to be peacemakers and nurturers. However in the workplace, I encourage women to actively speak up and question others, and to seek out leadership roles.

How has mentorship made a difference in your professional and personal life?
From very early in my career, a couple of individuals took a huge chance on me by hiring me for senior Executive positions, despite the fact that I lacked the experience traditionally required for these positions. Their belief in my potential motivated me to work harder and smarter because I didn't want to disappoint my mentors. I thank each of them for my success.

Which other female leaders do you admire and why?
Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In inspires me. Sandberg and I began our careers at similar times, when 50% of individuals graduating from most higher education programs were females. Yet 20 years later, there are still less than 10% of us in the C suite. I love her examination of why this continues to happen.

I also admire Hilary and Chelsea Clinton with their No Ceilings Campaign. I could not be more proud and excited about the prospect of a female US president. It's about time!

What do you want Daily Greens to accomplish in the next year?
In the upcoming year, I want to make Daily Greens readily available and affordable for every household in America. I also want to help spread the powerful message of how food impacts our long-term health, and in particular the healing powers of greens.