# ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

by Laura Fry

Well, like many other American's I have seen many of my friends throwing buckets of water over their heads on Facebook.  I didn't pay much attention until my sweet little Goddaughter Molly challenged me to "the challenge."

I am thrilled to learn that the "gimmick" has worked?  The New York Times reports that over $41 million dollars has been donated to ALS research since "the challenge" began a couple of weeks ago.  If you would like to give the ALS Association (www.ALSA.org) is a great place to donate.

Rather than throwing water over my head to avoid writing a check I thought I would write the check, pour a bucket of ice water over my head and somehow come up with some ways of helping to continue raising awareness.

Awareness.  Over the past several years I have read three fantastic books that have given me a better understanding of what ALS patients go through and the heart break their loved ones suffer on a daily basis.  I highly recommend each one:

  • Tales from the Bed by Jennifer Estes (the book that first introduced me to ALS)
  • His Brother's Keeper - Be sure to check out Jamie Heywood's Ted talk, as well at http://bit.ly/1s7kwe5)
  • Tuesday's with Morrie written by Detroit's own Mitch Albom (made into a motion picture, as well)

Local Action.  Locally based Ann Arbor Active Against ALS (www.activeagainstals.org) is a Michigan based non-profit that donates funds to research labs that use the money directly and immediately for cure-driven research.  Their donations go to:

  • ALS Therapy Development Institute
  • University of Michigan's Program for Neurology Research
  • The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at John's Hopkins
  • Ozdinier Laboratory at Northwestern University

Shout Out.  Amazing research is being done right here in the Mitten!  Dr. Eva Feldman M.D. Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.  She is brilliant and is making great strides in her quest to find a cure and treatments for ALS.  See her recent interview on PBS here: http://bit.ly/1rnPZgC  

American Made!

by Laura Fry

Happy Birthday, USA!

I couldn’t be prouder of the industrious and patriotic nature of my fellow Americans!

 My husband and I spent Independence Day in a small northern Michigan community that celebrates July 4th with gusto… 5k/10K run, parade, art fair, picnic, and a fireworks display after the sun goes down.  People dress in red, white and blue and children decorate their bikes with streamers in celebration.

As we reveled in all of the activity, I couldn’t help but ponder the importance of the day.  It was at this time that I further committed to insuring Liza Quinn LLC makes every effort to:

  • Source American made supplies (fabrics, notions, tags, etc.)
  • Employ American craftspeople (seamstresses, label makers, etc.)
  • Partner with American suppliers (graphic artists, printers, fabric makers, etc.)
  • Offer our fellow Americans fair wages for their hard work

Because of our commitment to supporting our native land by employing our fellow Americans, our prices may not always be the lowest but our products will be offered at a fair price for the workmanship and quality materials that go in to each of our product offerings.

Thank you for your interest in Liza Quinn LLC and the hardworking Americans behind our “American Made” products!

Welcome to LizaQuinn.com

by Laura Fry

April 11 2013

I am thrilled to announce the launch of www.LizaQuinn.com!  Launching this newly formed Michigan based business has been a real labor of love.

Why Walker and Wheelchair Bags?  As you noted on our Home page, Elizabeth Laura Quinn McGowan's love of purses and totes inspired me to begin searching for stylish bags to adorn her walker.  Disappointed that I couldn't find anything that my mother found attractive enough to attach to her walker, I turned to friends to make custom bags for the walker.  She loved them and gushed that they were made just for her!  After the passing of my mother in 2012, I asked a dear friend to work with me to come up with a design that could be customized in a variety of fabrics for a variety of tastes and then taken to market. 

Why Liza Quinn, LLC?  Since I am founding a unique and contemporary company, I was looking for a name rooted in familial tradition; yet, with a unique and contemporary flair.  Since Elizabeth Laura Quinn McGowan was the inspiration for my product offerings, I looked to adopt a twist on my Mom's name.  My mother was mostly Irish and loved her maiden name of Quinn!  Yes, she was proud of her married name of McGowan but considered her maiden name a badge of honor.  I then looked to shorten her first name of Elizabeth and adopt a unique and contemplorary twist.  Thus, my business quickly became "Liza Quinn."

Why Michigan?  Elizabeth Laura Quinn McGowan, the inspiration for this business, was born and raised in Michigan and remained in Michigan throughout her life.  She sang the praises of the Great Lakes State every opportunity she had!  As her daughter and the founder of Liza Quinn LLC, I am commited to the growth of the Great Lakes State.  Michigan has had its share of struggles in recent years, but things are turning around and I am looking to roll up my sleeves and do my part to contribute to our growing economy.

Future Offerings?  Plans are in the works to offer additional designs and fabric offerings for men, women and children of all ages.  Please visit us often to stay abreast of new product offerings.

Partners!  As I prepared to launch this business, I relied on the friendship and talents of dear, dear friends.  Sarah Robart Didion sewed by mother's first walker bag.  My Mom was thrilled - and a huge fan of Sarah's, I might add.  Elise Brogan developed the design used for all of our current offerings.  Mike Rizik of Rizik & Rizik in Grand Blanc, MI secured our LLC and registered the business with the State of Michigan.  Sue Rizik brainstormed with me over countless lunches at the Gandy Dancer in Ann Arbor, MI.  Jennifer Barrett Ledgerwood of Jenny Lane Studios took all of our promotional pictures in her Holly, MI studio.  My sister-in-law, Susan Fry, helped edit my logo. Marie Seiden of M. Seiden & Associates helped refine product cards + tags.  Most importantly, my husband Stephen James Fry has provided the love and support every entrepreneur craves.  Thank you, all!!!