Why do you do what you do?

I was often encouraged to do great things with my career: be a CEO, a leader in my field.

And that was my goal.

But rarely did people discuss that along the road, I might want to have children and spend quality time with them as a volunteer at their school, soccer coach, or their tour guide at the zoo on a sunny Friday.

More importantly, no one said "and that would be great."

Many of us experience a moment that causes us to change course. Mine was at midnight, frantically working on a presentation in my windowless home office. My daughter was nine months old. My husband came in the room to check on me and say goodnight, and I burst into tears. I was stretched too thin with no end in sight.

I left the consulting world, planning to take a year off. While I was enjoying time with my daughter, I quickly realized that I was unfulfilled. I had checked a big part of me at the door, and knew that many other women were doing the same.

From that realization, Canopy Advisory Group was born: a portfolio of professionals with big-firm training who deliberately choose to use their skills on a project basis. Our model may provide a short stint away from corporate life or a long-term career choice. Regardless, I hope the Canopy model empowers women with the knowledge that fulfilling their many life roles is never a “less-than” career choice, and the strongest leaders emerge when they forge the path that is right for them.

— Brooke Borgen

Photography by Trevor Brown