Alexandra Spirer
Apr 15 · 5 min read

I was very much shaped by the powerful women in my life, and I believe that all women deserve to be honored. I find that in the chaos of every day, women forget themselves, their strength, their beauty, and their independence. My hope is that each of my rings inspires the woman wearing it to be the best version of herself.


I had the pleasure of interviewing Sergio Andrés Mendoza, a former software developer and startup executive, who lost his wife Sarah to breast cancer in 2017, and created Pharaoun Cocktail Rings to honor the women in his life.


Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Mortality has a way of crystalizing what is important, and after 10 years in software and startups, I realized that I expected more of myself. I loved software development, but I believed I was capable of more, and asked myself the important questions: what should be my personal mission?, how can I be my best self?, and what should my legacy be?

I was very much shaped by the powerful women in my life, and I believe that all women deserve to be honored. I find that in the chaos of every day, women forget themselves, their strength, their beauty, and their independence. My hope is that each of my rings inspires the woman wearing it to be the best version of herself.

Your company’s mission is based on grief turned into gratitude, can you elaborate further on how this has brought your business into fruition?

Sarah died in 2017, and in the following year, I did something radical: I gifted rings to hundreds of women, and in spite of designing each of my rings, I never chose a ring for a woman.

A cocktail ring is not like other jewelry. Beautiful, yes, but more importantly, a cocktail ring should be personal, and the best cocktail rings symbolize your relationship with yourself.

My hope is that each woman falls in love with one of my cocktail rings, not only because of its design, but because it represents a part of them that they love. Maybe it reflects a part of them that they don’t see often but want to be reminded of. Maybe it is their greatest strength. Maybe it is the person they want to be. The choice is hers.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career?

My biggest surprise is that women like my rings. I design large, traditional, elegant rings with 22k gold, and most women don’t have rings like that in their jewelry box. It has been amazing seeing woman after woman find herself in one of my rings.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I have tried to include my children in my business since the first day, and my hope is that one day we can work together. I find it funny that my seven year old son, Sergio, insists on telling every woman that he meets that he is the sole designer of most of my rings.

What are 5 things you would advise in order to survive and thrive going through grief? Can you please give a story or example for each?

I lost my wife Sarah in 2017 and my only sister Beatriz in 2018. At my sister’s memorial service, I shared some ideas that have helped me: https://www.facebook.com/Sergiomendoza/posts/10157206421110016.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that helped you when starting your business? Can you share how that was relevant in your real life?

“People are awesome!”

If we treat them with empathy and respect, there is no greater source of beauty, strength, and ability than the people we surround ourselves with.

If you could go back in time and speak to your younger self, what would you tell him and why?

Don’t be afraid to follow a passion even if you have spent your life preparing for something else. You will find a way to incorporate your strengths and your skills into your passion over time.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now?

I just designed a ring specifically to raise money for breast cancer research. I didn’t name it after my late wife, instead I named it after my daughter Anaïs, because I want to have hope for the future. 100% of the purchase price of the Anaïs ring will be donated to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, and I am working hard to create events that will make a difference.

Because of the position that you are in, you are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

I believe that women are already powerful, and should be honored for the way that they are. I think we as a community should cultivate an environment that gives women the opportunity to honor themselves.

Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them :-)

Absolutely Ellen Degeneres. She has championed inclusion in all of its forms and has made huge strides in honoring humans everywhere. I have so much to learn from her.

How can our readers reach you on social media?

Instagram: @pharaouncocktailrings

Facebook: @pharaounrings

Miami Showroom: visit@pharaoun.com

Authority Magazine

Leadership Lessons from Authorities in Business, Film, Sports and Tech. Authority Mag is devoted primarily to sharing interesting feature interviews of people who are authorities in their industry. We use interviews to draw out stories that are both empowering and actionable.

Alexandra Spirer

Written by

I am an entrepreneur, publicist, journalist and event producer based in Sunny Florida. My passion is writing & giving back to others.

Authority Magazine

Leadership Lessons from Authorities in Business, Film, Sports and Tech. Authority Mag is devoted primarily to sharing interesting feature interviews of people who are authorities in their industry. We use interviews to draw out stories that are both empowering and actionable.

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