Jessica Zimmerman
Owner, A Southern Tradition

Along with my amazing team, I design and produce beautiful events. People tell me, “I had no idea a place like this existed in Arkansas!” A Southern Tradition is a rental and floral design boutique unlike any other. I’ve always had a passion for details and an appreciation for beautiful things. I feel so at home here. I know I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing. My dad once said, “You’re a dreamer like your Granddaddy and you’re determined like your Pappy—you might just pull this off.”

On Power
People often underestimate the power of gratitude. I recently had a client drive to my store the day after her bridal portraits to personally tell me how much she loved her bridal portrait bouquet. The fact that she took the time to personally thank me for my work meant so much to me.

I felt most powerful the day I officially became the owner of A Southern Tradition.

A true sign of power is self-reliance. I believe as the owner of a small business, it’s my responsibility to know how to do every job, even the not-so-glamorous ones.

On Success

I get to work every day doing what I love, working with people I enjoy, making people’s dreams come true. That’s success, and I don’t take it for granted.

On Motivation

Most of all, I love the look on my clients’ faces when they see what my team has created for them. I have big dreams. I believe I’ve only scratched the surface of what I want for this company.

Powerful Day

Fashion freedom! I love not having a dress code. I’ve always had a great appreciation for fashion—I think it’s such a fun way to express oneself. My go-to look for an important meeting is jeans, a blazer and heels. The comfort of jeans, the professionalism of a suit jacket, combined with the confidence exuded by a pair of six-inch heels—you can’t beat it.

The Quiz

  • Favorite destination in Arkansas: Greers Ferry Lake is where I go for a relaxing weekend. Bonfires, s’mores, the lake—I love everything about it.
  • Favorite restaurant in Little Rock and what you like to eat there: SO Restaurant-Bar, because it’s the only restaurant that makes me feel like I’m in my favorite city in the world—New York City. The ahi tuna is a given!

(See the full list of the 2012 Women to Watch here!)