Heyward an advocate for local women

Heyward photo courtesy: Melody Strider

Olivia Heyward is all for uplifting women in Tallahassee. She has expanded her various projects to help women feel encouraged and courageous in everything they do. 

Heyward is from Daytona Beach, and moved to Tallahassee to attend Tallahassee Community College. While living in Tallahassee, Heyward founded a creative project in Charlotte, N.C. One of Heyward’s friends in Charlotte had trouble finding kid-friendly magazines for her child, and Heyward felt she could handle the task of creating age-appropriate magazines for children. The magazine was called “Courage Magazine.”

“We just started learning about the magazine industry — you know what it took, the advertisements and all of those things,” Heyward said.

She moved to Charlotte in 2009 after working long-distance on the magazine from Tallahassee.

“I just wanted to start something new. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit, so it was like, this is something great that I would be interested in doing,” Heyward said. 

“Courage Magazine” never launched, but because her creative drive never shifted, she started a new project leading to a new business. She decided to start creating jewelry. Like many others, she struggles with sensitive ears. Heyward could not find earrings that suited her style and sensitive ears, so she created her own. 

“It was born out of the necessity that I wanted something that I could be super creative and wear statement earrings, but not take them off after a couple of hours,” Heyward said.

Heyward started her self-named brand, Olivia Heyward, in 2020, with the four-year anniversary this April. She uses polymer clay for the earrings, which means Heyward can produce powerful, statement earrings in a lightweight fashion for accessories. 

One of Heyward’s first customers was Amber Lykins. They met when Heyward was the manager of a bridal shop in Charlotte. At the time, the two women were content creators, and Lykins was just starting out on her branding journey as a sales director for a beauty brand. 

“At this point, I was helping, through learning how to brand and stuff through the magazine I started helping other entrepreneurs with websites and branding,” Heyward said. 

After the women became friends, Heyward encouraged Lykins to start her own YouTube channel, create sales content and brand herself. 

“I helped her, showed her how to edit, create videos, get on the platform and grow her subscriber base. As she continued to grow and grow, people would ask her how she did this,” Heyward said.

This led to “A & OH,” a coaching course the two women created for other women to develop video and branding content that can help women sell their products. 

“We decided to create this 12-week masterclass, where we would meet with these women every single week, where we would start from the bottom then all the way to the top,” Heyward said. 

The two women continue working on video content and branding through the “A & OH” brand so that women can effectively brand themselves and their products. 

“Olivia is absolutely incredible. Whenever a problem arises, she effortlessly finds a solution. It’s as if she’s a walking embodiment of problem-solving. Not only is she the greatest friend ever, but I trust her with everything,” Lykins said.

.Since 2019, Heyward has worked remotely as the graphic designer and creative director of Tallahassee Woman Magazine. Heyward returned to Tallahassee in the summer of 2022 because she and her husband wanted to come back to Florida.

“Over the last five years, initially, Olivia Heyward was the graphic designer, and then became the creative director for Tallahassee Woman Magazine,” Michelle Mitcham, the CEO and publisher of the magazine, said.

“Working closely with Olivia has played a crucial role in taking the publisher’s vision as her blueprint and elevating the magazine to new heights by transforming the magazine’s branding to reflect inclusive excellence from all design perspectives,” Mitcham added. 

The magazine’s latest edition was Heyward’s 29th as creative director, and she is overjoyed with her role. 

“I love doing the magazine because it highlights so many amazing women in the community. I love Dr. Mitcham’s heart for the women in the community and the opportunity to uplift and shine a light at them,” Heyward said. 

While being the creative director at Tallahassee Woman Magazine and working on “A & OH,” Heyward also works as the office manager for Therapeutic Endeavors and is a graphic designer for five women-owned brands through “A & OH.” 

Heyward is a woman of talent, from her various projects, including magazine work, to her business expertise and branding content. Heyward cares about helping the women in her community and is passionate about helping them reach new heights any way she can.