Flawless with Kirsten Drew Woolf…
When Kirsten’s daughter, Angelina, was just a baby, she packed up a nappy bag and took her to the office. ‘Skipping maternity leave wasn’t an easy thing to do, or an easy decision to make, but when you’re a business owner – and operating in an industry that’s heavily dominated by men – you have to make these hard choices when necessary,’ she says.
It’s this go-getting spirit that’s helped Kirsten establish herself as South Africa’s Queen of Diamonds, and positioned her as one of our top enterprising women.
As the CEO of diamond and jewellery wholesaler KD Diamonds and the newly launched Kirsten Drew, a jewellery company that will help disadvantage women, she’s not only used to putting in the hours … she also knows that if you have your eye on success, that’s just the beginning.
‘Integrity and innovation are key for any entrepreneur,’ she says. And they’re the values she lives by daily, forever pushing boundaries as she finds new ways to propel her businesses forward.
Helping advance women in business is another of Kirsten’s passions. As a finalist in the Tammy Taylor Mrs South Africa pageant, female advancement is high on her list of priorities.
When she was growing up there was a dearth of female role models. ‘I think women were only just starting to come to the fore in business and other spheres. I’m fortunate to be in a position to change that … and it’s something I take very much to heart.’
Kirsten adds that being mother to two-year-old Angelina fuels her determination in this area. ‘I know that, one day, this country will belong to Angelina and the other girls growing up with her. I think it’s important to do everything we can to make their inheritance a wonderful one.’
For Kirsten, this means taking part in initiatives aimed at uplifting women. She’s passionate about UN Women, and as a Mrs South Africa finalist, has come to work closely with Women4Women, an organisation established by former Miss South Africa, Cindy Nell, which is dedicated to improving the quality of life for women throughout South Africa.
When not involved in her Mrs SA finalist duties, Kirsten embraces the opportunity to help others … she recently hosted a glamorous and hugely successful fund-raising event for Women4Women, and is about to launch a range of jewellery, with proceeds from sales going to initiatives supporting women as well as her other favourite cause, animals.
‘I’ve been involved in animal rescue since I was a child,’ she says. And her determination to help in this area remains unabated. She’s a keen supporter of Woodrock Animal Rescue. ‘The work done by founder Estelle Meldau and her team is vital. Woodrock truly has my heart.’
Kirsten’s daughter has inherited her mother’s love of animals, and Kirsten says that although her life may seem glamorous – besides her successful businesses, her appearances on top South African magazines covers attests to her burgeoning success as a model – she’s happiest when spending time with her husband, who she describes as ‘my number one champion’, her daughter and her Dachshund dogs. ‘Angelina has such personality, with an infectious smile and laugh,’ Kirsten says of her daughter.
Life for this beauty ambassador is certainly frenetic, but as a self-confessed perfectionist and someone who likes to be in control, she relishes any challenge. ‘One of the most important things I’ve come to realise is that you make your own destiny. No matter what life throws at you, you have a choice – and my choice is always to make the very most of what I’ve been given.’
Details: Follow Kirsten on Instagram – Kirsten.drew.woolf