Not all goodbyes are bittersweet.

Danielle Kristine Toussaint
3 min readAug 29, 2022

I’ve made my living with words, though not how I imagined I would. My family always told me I would be a lawyer when I grew up. I was well-spoken, persuasive, and quick with a defense. I was also obsessed with Clair Huxtable, the best TV mom ever, and the first Black woman attorney I had seen. I admired everything about her — from her diction and demeanor, to her style and Spanish language fluency. Like so many others, each weekly glimpse into Clair’s fictional life on The Cosby Show felt like training for my real-life future being a total boss at work and home. Words would get me to that future.

Thankfully, life changed my plans for the better. Right out of college, I took what was supposed to be a short detour to gain real world work experience before applying and enrolling in a top law school. I would later discover that words, and specifically, storytelling would put on me on a professional path in nonprofit and social impact leadership that would shuttle me to a truer calling. After more than a decade working in nonprofit communications, I launched a creative agency to help mission-driven executives and entrepreneurs craft stories and pitches to attract the resources they needed to achieve their vision for impact.

Growing up, I always envisioned what I did for work would help others, but I didn’t know what the term “social entrepreneurship” meant and I didn’t think much about owning my own company. Throughout my college years, though, I started to think about it a lot. And, I’m grateful to have spent the past few years building a brand and business anchored in my authentic belief that for some people, making a difference and making a living cannot be disentangled. To all the clients who trusted me to help them bring their brands to life, thank you.

Nothing was broken at She Thinks Purple, but something was off. I could feel myself allowing distance between me and the brand to develop as I slowly and steadily wound down all operations. I stopped taking on new projects. My original partners all moved on to other opportunities. For the past year, I’ve been a full-time Chief External Affairs Officer. I kept telling myself (and anyone who reached out to me about projects) that I was too busy to focus on anything outside of my new gig. While that wasn’t a lie, it also wasn’t the whole truth. It felt weird to announce that this thing so many people had come to associate with me was over, even though I’ve felt that it was time to call it for a while.

The pandemic shifted so much in the world around me and within me. I experienced new losses and gains, and I was so fundamentally transformed in the process that I no longer felt the same connection to the brand I had built. I have new questions I’m interested in solving, and I feel compelled to explore a fundamentally different way of partnering with other creatives to achieve shared social and economic goals. My vision for community-building and social impact storytelling is more expansive than when I started five years ago, though no less relevant. It’s time to say goodbye so that I can welcome in something new that has been building itself in my head and heart.

Let me clear, though, this goodbye is all sweet, and not at all bitter. It feels amazing to make room for Purple Haus, my new venture. I can’t wait to share more with you about the journey and see what we create together in the weeks and months and years to come.

Want to keep in touch? Follow me here on Medium and on LinkedIn.

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