6 Industry-Disrupting Women To Watch in 2024

Entrepreneurs including tennis superstar Venus Williams are changing the game in realty, psychedelic medicine and more.

Presented by The Claudine Arthurs Agency

From five-time Wimbledon champ Venus Williams to a pioneer in psychedelic medicines, the six influential female innovators below are driving disruption in their respective sectors. They come from diverse industries and backgrounds, but they share a common mission: to create a better future. Through their groundbreaking work, they exemplify the power of disruptive thinking and the importance of going beyond the status quo.

Venus Williams – Co-Founder, Palazzo.ai

(Venus Williams)

Renowned for her groundbreaking achievements in tennis, Williams has also carved a distinct path as a visionary entrepreneur and designer. She established her interior design firm, V Starr, back in 2002 marking the inception of her journey into the realm of design. Williams aims to revolutionize the way people approach interior design with the recently launched  Palazzo.ai.  Her vision is to simplify and enliven the design process, making it accessible and enjoyable for everyone.

Palazzo.ai is an innovative platform at the intersection of technology and interior design. It serves as a transformative tool for individuals embarking on home renovation projects or seeking to reimagine their living spaces.

At its core, Palazzo.ai aims to simplify the often daunting process of interior design by leveraging cutting-edge technology. Through Palazzo.ai, users can upload actual photos of their own space. While most AI platforms in interior design allow users to create rooms with any design, these are often not based on real rooms.

With Palazzo, you can snap a photo of your actual living room, kitchen, etc., and leverage AI to visualize the potential changes in your space in real time before making any commitments. “Design is more than just aesthetics; it’s a reflection of who we are and the stories we want to tell,” says Willians.

Marla Mattenson – Founder of The Ethical Sales Institute 

(Marla Mattenson)

Marla Mattenson, Founder of The Ethical Sales Institute and the visionary behind the Ethical Sales Process, is a trailblazer in transforming sales paradigms from transactional to relational for professionals who prioritize the integrity and fulfillment of their services.

With a rich background that spans neuroscience, mathematics, and relationship-based sales, Marla is at the forefront of championing a human-centered, consent-based approach to sales. This revolutionary method is especially crucial for professionals like attorneys, financial advisors, coaches, and consultants, for whom traditional sales tactics fail to resonate with their values and the nuanced nature of their work.

Throughout a distinguished 25-plus-year career, Mattenson has profoundly impacted a wide range of business owners and high-profile clients, including Academy Award-winning figures, NBA coaches, Grammy Award-winning artists, and millionaire entrepreneurs. Her innovative strategies and insights continue to redefine sales and relationship methodologies, garnering international acclaim.

Mattenson is a sought-after speaker and expert in the fields of sales, business, and love.  She has been featured across platforms such as The New York Times, Forbes, Oprah, Entrepreneur, NBC, CBS and more. Through The Ethical Sales Institute, she continues to inspire and equip professionals with the tools to thrive in an evolving marketplace defined by integrity, care, respect and genuine connections.

Melanie Klein – Coaching & Consulting

(Melanie Klein)

Melanie Klein, M.A., is changing the real estate coaching industry by diverging from the traditional hustle-and-grind mentality. Her coaching approach transcends mere task execution, offering clients an innovative route to success that seamlessly integrates their personal and professional lives. Drawing from a rich background in sociology, positive psychology, and conscious leadership, Klein blends mindfulness and embodiment practices with social advocacy.

Whether engaging with individuals or teams nationwide, her holistic approach, centered on a flourishing success model, not only leads to personal freedom and prosperity but also greater impact, joy and meaning.

For over two decades, Klein has helped her clients and students identify their blind spots and lean into their growth edges to create personal and social change. Highly regarded as a thought leader in personal growth and social change, Klein has curated and edited four award-winning anthologies and contributed to over 10 additional books with a focus on personal empowerment and collective resilience.

Widely known for bringing critical consciousness into wellness communities and bringing wellness into academic spaces, she now brings both into business. Klein has been a featured speaker and coach for the Compass Annual Retreat, Women of Compass, Employee Impact Day and the Women’s Council of Realtors, benefiting agents across brokerages.

She coaches some of the top agents and teams across the country and is a frequent guest at sales meetings and in-office training, helping brokers, sales managers, team leads and individual agents optimize their results at work and at home. Klein is also a featured columnist at Inman News. Explore Klein’s insights and extensive press on her website and on the TEDx platform.

Jill L. Ferguson – Coach, Consultant, Author, Entrepreneur

(Jill L. Ferguson)

Jill L. Ferguson has been an innovator, disrupter, and agent of change in higher education, publishing, the non-profit sector, and entrepreneurial endeavors. She has started a number of companies, most recently Creating the Freelance Career, where she coaches people who want to write and publish thought-provoking books and/or who want to launch and grow their own companies, and her book, Help! My Company Swiped Left!, in which she coaches people in job, career, or industry transitions.

Through coaching and consulting and her dozens of books, Ferguson helps people think non-linearly and more intuitively about all facets of their lives and career paths so they can grow and embrace their best selves and have incredible, life-affirming experiences. Over the last 25-plus years, Ferguson has written thousands of articles for major media and been an in-demand guest on television shows, radio shows, podcasts and speaking engagements. A partial list of her appearances and interviews, and how to contact and collaborate with her, can be found on her website.

Megan Pastrana – CEO, Managing Attorney, Coach

(Megan Pastrana)

Megan Pastrana is the innovative CEO and Managing Attorney of Immigration for Couples. She and her team are dedicated to holistically assisting couples to navigate the US immigration process to start the next chapter of their lives together. Pastrana serves her clients not only as an immigration attorney, but also as a mindset coach and guide throughout the immigration process. Having gone through her own journey of love and immigration with her husband, she understands firsthand the emotions and difficulties that couples experience.

Many people are surprised to find that the immigration process for couples is very complex and can oftentimes take well over a year to complete. Often, couples live in two separate countries and must manage a long-distance relationship. Couples can easily fall into a victim mindset, feeling that they have no control over the process or timing. Pastrana’s team helps couples to be mindful of their emotions, encouraging couples to focus on their relationship instead of the stress of the process, knowing that the adversity of the journey will ultimately strengthen the relationship.

Throughout her almost decade-long career, Pastrana has assisted over 1,000 couples from over 80 countries successfully complete the US immigration process to receive lawful permanent residency and US citizenship. Pastrana has provided her immigration policy expertise to members of congress, reality TV show producers, and several major media outlets, including Telemundo and ABC. She has been recognized as one of the top immigration attorneys in the nation by the Super Lawyers rating service. For more, follow Pastrana on LinkedIn.

Danielle Brooks – Spiritual Mentor

(Danielle Brooks)

As research centers worldwide explore innovative treatments using ketamine, MDMA, psilocybin, and more, Danielle Brooks has emerged as a pioneer and integration guide for clients embarking and returning from psychedelic and non-psychedelic medicine journeys since 2020. She teaches people how to set intentions and work with specific medicines for maximum results, guiding them on how to get the most out of their experiences. Brooks helps her clients integrate what was revealed to them into their daily lives; these revelations are powerful enough to disrupt lifelong patterns passed down from generation to generation. 

Brooks works with 20 to 40 clients per week, taking them through various medicinal experiences to move beyond negative thought patterns, limiting belief structures, trauma and ego activity. Working outside of traditional frameworks and obstacles, Danielle has had the freedom to take risks and discover what works and what doesn’t. 

Her innovative methods to help clients integrate psychedelic and non-psychedelic revelations have profoundly impacted a wide range of high-profile individuals, including Navy SEALs, models, Academy Award winners, professional athletes in all major sports, and billionaire entrepreneurs. Her strategies and insights continue to redefine integration methodologies. Her book, The Extraordinary Ordinary You, sets the stage for people to get more from their lives. Her follow-up book, Revelation Integration, is scheduled to be released this fall. Connect with Danielle on LinkedIn.