58: Kara Ross on Creating Diamonds Unleashed, Empowering Women to Buy Their Own Bling + Teaching Girls to Code

EP-58-KaraRoss-DiamondsUnleashed-SquareHave you ever bought yourself a diamond? That’s a question today’s guest asked me – and she had me stumped (which is not something that happens often – listen to the show, and you know I like to talk). But when Diamonds Unleashed founder Kara Ross asked me that, I had to think about the answer.

It didn’t take long for me to do a quick mental survey – all gifts. Important, beautiful gifts. But underneath her question and the reality of how rare it is for women to buy their own diamonds is another question: why? Why is it that women are unlikely to buy what is widely considered to be one of the world’s most beautiful objects for themselves? Why do we wait for other people to give us diamonds?

With her latest venture, Ross, a longtime jewelry designer who’s created custom work for a lengthy roster of high-profile clients that includes the President and the First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama, is setting out to shift how women think about diamonds and use the fruits of that campaign to empower and create new educational opportunities for girls. Let me say it another way: Ross wants you to buy yourself a diamond (a responsibly-sourced one, btw) as a symbol of empowerment and use the net profits from that purchase to fund non-profit partners such as Girls Who Code and She’s the First. I don’t know about you, but I’d so put a ring on that.

This episode brought to you with support from the FEST-ive folks at Betabrand. Save 20% off when you shop and use code SPIRIT20. But wait, there’s more below!



<3 <3 <3 Oh hey there! Please help the podcast out and leave us a rating and review on iTunes.

This stuff is key to the show’s success, and I appreciate you helping me play the game. <3 <3 <3


Listen online: Just press play above or subscribe via RSS to receive all new episodes.

iOS, iPhone, iPad: Subscribe via iTunes or download the Apple Podcast app and subscribe by searching for Spirit of 608 in the app.

Android: Download the free Stitcher app and search for Spirit of 608 in the app.

Listen to Kara’s journey from building her eponymous jewelry brand Kara Ross New York into a well-known source for fine jewelry that doubles as fine art (you’ll find her work in more than a few museums) and her reasons for transitioning into philanthropy with the launch of Diamonds Unleashed, which has committed to donating all the net profits of its jewelry sales to its partner non-profits.


A special thank you to Cuyana, Oakland Spirits Company, The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen, Leila Seppa Photography & Button It Up Events. Also, shout outs to Third Wave Fashion, Modsy, Rocksbox, Fashion is Your Business podcast and more on today’s show.

Diamonds Unleashed: www.diamondsunleashed.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DiamondsUnleashed

Twitter: @diamondsunleash

Instagram: @diamondsunleashed

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/diamondsunleash

Diamonds Unleashed in the New York Times

Gemological Institute of America

Bergdorf Goodman

Neiman Marcus

Saks Fifth Avenue




Michelle Obama

Girls Who Code

She’s the First


Virtual Reality


TOM Shoes

Warby Parker

Stuart Weitzman

Project Gravitas


Serena Williams

Sally Krawcheck

T-shirt motto: Strong women are beautiful.

Find more episodes featuring women at the forefront of FEST online at www.Spiritof608.com.



© Spirit of 608