Give ‘High Five’ to ‘mompreneur’ with grant contest vote

STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO

It’s not easy being a “mompreneur,” a woman actively balancing being a mom and an entrepreneur.

Just ask Lerin Lockwood, the founder of Lion Latch.

Three years ago, Lockwood designed and created the Lion Latch, a small, plastic, secure cylinder that clicks onto key rings. It’s designed to keep rings, earrings, and necklaces safely hidden in plain sight while a person works or plays.

Since its launch, Lockwood has been crisscrossing the country talking about her invention, taken various business workshops, and attended trade shows.

She is still an art teacher at Marble Falls High School and continues to coach her Rising Stars select volleyball program for ages 5-12.

A year after she started Lion Latch, Lockwood and her husband, Trent, had a daughter, Bowie.

“I swear I sleep,” Lockwood said with a laugh. “When you’re a mom and you’re running a small business, it’s a lot of work. You’re running it from home, and you have babies to juggle.”

In the midst of marketing Lion Latch, Lockwood discovered HIGH FIVE Grant for Moms, a semiannual $5,000 business grant offered by The Mama Ladder International, a community of female business owners and mothers who help each other succeed by combining resources and expertise and sharing knowledge and experiences. 

“It’s moms building businesses,” Lockwood said. “They’re trying to cheer you on and provide mentorship, community, and time.”

Lockwood “applied a couple of weeks ago” and made it to the final eight out of 175 applicants. Now, it’s up to voters to help decide which mompreneur will be awarded the grant.

Voters should go to HIGH FIVE Grant for Moms hosted by The Mama Ladder and scroll down to the middle of the page.

Voting ends Wednesday, Feb. 20, at 7 p.m. local time.

Lockwood said the application asked her about her business, how it works and serves buyers, what she’d do with her brand, and how she’d help others.

She said if she wins, she’ll use the money to produce more Lion Latches since she is planning a big promotion in early March.

The teacher was on her way to class and had already put in a couple of hours of work on her Lion Latch business before her daughter woke. She had packed a lunch for both of them before heading out the door to start their day.

Lockwood noted she is like so many women she knows who have full-time jobs, a business, and a family and wants to do all equally well.

“It’s impressive, and they’re still able to make time for family and keep it together,” she said.

While voting is happening, Lockwood will take a group of students to a visual arts statewide competition on Saturday, Feb. 16.

She also has been working on Rising Stars, a program designed to emphasize the basics and the fun of volleyball. Lockwood said a parent recently stopped her while shopping to thank her for helping her daughter make the B team of her middle school program, noting the players had three tryout days to impress the coaches.

“She went in there knowing the fundamentals and impressed the coaches,” Lockwood said. “We’re making the most of the time when they’re working with me.”

And Lockwood make the most of every minute of her day as a mom, wife, entrepreneur, and teacher.

jfierro@thepicayune.com

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