#Mightybell: The Best Home for Your Niche Community

Mightybell is the latest product for “identity networks” from the community-minded brain of entrepreneur Gina Bianchini. Mightybell provides a blank canvas for “community entrepreneurs” to quickly and simply create a space for a network of people who share a common interest or identity to meet each other, break the ice and build relationships. There, they can nourish the intimacy of a small community, on a large — even global — scale, so they and their peers “can learn faster and make better decisions” in any specialty, profession, interest, cause, discipline, identity, life stage, diagnosis or passion.


“We’re passionate about unlocking a new breed of community entrepreneurs bringing together people who wouldn’t otherwise meet around the things that are most important to them.” — Gina Bianchini


What do 26,000 craft hairdressers have in common?  They come together in their own “identity” network called Hairbrained, powered by Mightybell, on their own native mobile and web apps. Other examples of a Mightybell identity network are Beyond Type 1 and GENDR. These identity networks are literally changing lives for the better by providing crucially needed community connection and support.

The platform comes in four monthly commitment levels from free to enterprise.  Long gone are the days of the uni-dimensional forum! Imagine having what feels like a custom app without a huge investment or programming skills. Mightybell is making this easy, people!!

A Mightybell network helps you connect with other individuals with similar interests, ask questions to real people with real answers, and encourages you to meet community members near you. I have a few ideas for communities I’d love to build on Mightybell. Build yours too — and invite me!


I’ve had the pleasure of photographing Gina and the Mightybell team over the last several years.  With a focus on community creation, it is no wonder they’re such great group of people.  It’s always a pleasure to meet new members of the team at their offices in Palo Alto.

Thank you, Gina, for being such an inspiration. Congratulations on the success and growth of Mightybell; I’m excited to watch the platform continue to bring people together effortlessly.  This is the best of tech; empowering human connections and literally transforming lives.  Well done.

– Nancy

877-881-7221 | nancyrothstein.comnancy@nancyrothstein.com

Professional Portraits And a Mini-Interview with Heather Reynolds, Estate Planning Angel


Have you ever met someone and instantly wanted to cheerlead for everything they do?  That’s how I feel about my recent client Heather Reynolds, Estate Attorney.  I know what you’re thinking…estate planning; what’s the big deal?  Well, Heather isn’t your average Estate Attorney, or, I’m guessing, your average anything!

Why am I so excited?  I had a chance to hear Heather speak about her work last week, and it was a real eye opener.  Certainly her qualifications and background are impressive, her demeanor is approachable, and her professionalism is unquestionable.  But from what I can tell she has a super power that trumps all of that.  Compassion.  Let me rephrase that. Compassion on steroids.

Do you know how important a few key legal documents are in preventing major calamities for a person or family?  Heather does.  But she also knows that not everyone can afford an estate attorney, and not everyone has access to the information they need to translate legal jargon into something other than the alien language that it is.  Most people would take that knowledge and file it somewhere in the back of their minds, to be referenced as one of the many injustices in the world, and go on their merry way.  Not Heather; she created a solution.

Heather created a new website – YourLegacyLives.com.  She made educational videos. She provided free access to three key legal documents, and a slew of others at an incredibly reduced rate, all including detailed instructions.  Heather wants every Californian to have an estate plan.  Heather is rocking my world!

After hearing her speak, and while preparing for our portrait session, I spent time looking through the new site.  And I got it.  I really got it.  Because, honestly, while I knew I needed to do some estate planning paperwork (it’s been on my list since last January….oops) I did not know about some of the forms she mentioned, which are beyond essential.  I can think of countless people who can benefit from this resource.  And when I say countless, I mean likely everyone I know under the age of 40 and whole lot of the rest of us.

So, if you can afford to pay someone to do your estate plan, call Heather.  She is warm & kind, and she brings ease to an uneasy task.  If you can’t afford to pay, or know someone who can’t, visit her new site Your Legacy Lives, and start the process for free, and continue at fraction of the cost.

I would keep gushing, instead as a part of our mini interview series, I want you to hear directly from Heather.  Here goes:

1. What is an estate plan and how do you help your clients create one?  An estate plan acts like a parachute — everyone needs a parachute to jump out of an airplane and you won’t know if it works until it’s too late.  An estate plan is a set of documents that “saves us” like a parachute when we become incapacitated or pass away — so we’ll all need one at some point — we just don’t always have advanced notice.

The estate plan documents save us from the default California laws that “protect” us from our failure to plan.  California law assumes that our families cannot be trusted to handle our financial or health affairs without court supervision.  California’s plan for us is called Probate Court.  I’ve never met someone who liked the default plan except the judges and lawyers who get paid well to supervise a family’s finances and healthcare decisions.

Most of us would prefer a private plan — one that does not involve judges and lawyers when it comes to taking care of our loved ones.  That private estate plan involves your signing several documents that opt out of the court process and trusting your loved ones to follow your wishes privately rather than spending the rest of your life in court asking permission to make decisions.  It takes months to obtain court orders, which can be a serious problem if rent, mortgages and electric bills have to be paid on time or health decisions need to made immediately.

2. Why did you decide to create YourLegacyLives.com?  What is your vision for the site?  Almost daily, I see the horror stories of an overpopulated probate court, delays and unnecessary expenses on families in crisis.  Having grown up in a family of four children and a single mom, I noticed that there were few wealthy families in the probate court.  So I interviewed over a dozen families to find out what barriers stop them from creating the documents that would allow them to opt out of the probate process.  I discovered the following barriers:

1. they didn’t know what probate would be like
2. they didn’t know the cost of hiring a lawyer in the first place
3. they didn’t have the time it takes to prepare the documents
4. they were frustrated by the “legalese” of the documents

5. they were emotionally uncomfortable discussing the issues involved

No wonder 70% of Americans don’t have any documents in place!

So I set out to create a website that would overcome all of these barriers so that every family in California could have an estate plan — so we can write our own plan rather than letting the State of California write it for us.  New clients are often surprised when I tell them what would actually happen at the time of their death or incapacity if the process was left up to the state.

YourLegacyLives.com creates a step-by-step process that educates Californians how to create their own documents from my high quality templates — the same templates I use today in my law firm and have tested for over 15 years.  The process requires only about 2 hours per week for 3 to 4 weeks to complete at a fraction of the cost of hiring a lawyer.  The videos explain each document, paragraph by paragraph, so it’s easy to understand.  There is even a free assessment to determine whether a simple will or a living trust is most appropriate for their situation.  This online approach works great for a single person or family with traditional structures and wishes.

Not only can customers save their documents to their computer for future use and changes, they can print, sign and notarize them whenever they want.  Most online systems never give this kind of control to the customer.

3. What is one important legal document that everyone needs and no one knows about?  The HIPAA release is one of the most critical documents for any estate plan. HIPAA is the privacy law that fines health care providers $100,000 if they share health information with anyone other than the patient.  That means they can’t tell you what is wrong with your spouse or your 18 year old child in the emergency room unless you obtain a court order waiving HIPAA.  If your spouse or adult child waives HIPAA prior to incapacity, then the healthcare providers will be able to share information with you.  This comes as quite a shock to most of my clients.  It’s usually too late to get a HIPAA waiver by the time they come to me.  It’s one of the free documents on the website because everyone should have this document.

Now, this estate planning business is serious stuff.  So to lighten things up a bit, I am thrilled to be able to share a little taste of Heather’s sense of humor. Check out her video, “No Lawyers in Heaven”: 

Well, that’s all for now. I’ve got to get onto Your Legacy Lives and print out my HIPAA release!!  See you there…please use this link so she’ll know that I sent you: http://www.yourlegacylives.com/nrothstein


PS. Believe it or not, that’s not all there is to share about this powerful woman. She’s involved in at least one other amazing project that I will save for another time.  But, to keep you guessing and in suspense, I’ll just give you one hint: MERMAIDS.  Stay tuned!

877-881-7221 | nancyrothstein.comnancy@nancyrothstein.com

Professional Portraits And a Mini-Interview with Todd Wilms, VP of Digital at Neustar

Todd WilmsMeet Todd Wilms, the new VP of Digital at Neustar!  As a social media leader and brand evangelist, Todd was the perfect client; he knows his brand and had a clear idea of what he wanted to convey.  Todd’s relaxed, personable nature really comes through, and that was one of our main goals.

Our photo shoot was awesome, in large part because Todd is one of those people who makes you feel like you’ve been friends for years.  We spent a half day roaming the Neustar San Francisco offices to find cool backgrounds, and we found plenty.  They’ve done an amazing job with the interior design.  I love the booths (above) among many other interesting touches in their decor.  I did resist photographing him in front of the Etch-a-Sketch display (yep, this is San Francisco.  But I didn’t see any bean bags, the sure sign that you’re in a startup.)  After working with Todd, I thought he would be the perfect person to start my mini-interview series on the blog. Todd Wilms, has often written for Forbes as one of their chief contributors, is a great keynote speaker as well as frequent guest lecturer on topics of leadership in digital, business and social. Check out his LinkedIn post “The Best Commencement Speech Never Delivered” which offers some timeless advice delivered with enough humor to keep you reading; love it.

Needless to say, he’s got a busy professional schedule, so we caught up via email as he was sitting on a plane, where he graciously responded to my request for a light hearted mini-interview. I just knew his answers would be interesting and leave you smiling. So, here goes…



Where were you born? Cleveland Ohio. The river there wouldn’t burn for another 8 years.

What is your favorite thing to cook? Ratatouille. Love autumn vegetables when the air gets cool and prepping a great stew all day for a warm meal that night. Add some French bread. Yum!

Funniest thing your kids did lately? Oh that is easy. Naked dance time singing Britney.

What do you love about marketing? I love marketing. I love helping consumers find brands; helping them find that thing they want, need or desire to make their lives better.

Fill in the blank. Happiness is…a warm gun. Sorry, but grew up on the Beatles.

My 5 year goal? To be 3 years older.

My ambition? World’s tallest man.

My heroes? Thomas Aquinas, Aristotle, and Luther. Lex Luther.

My greatest attribute? My humility. I am awesome at my humility.


Find Todd: LinkedIn | Twitter

877-881-7221 | nancyrothstein.comnancy@nancyrothstein.com

Professional Portrait Shoot with Marianne Cooper, Ph.D. Sociologist and Author of Cut Adrift: Families in Insecure Times

I’m so honored to have the opportunity to photograph powerful, inspiring women who are doing important work in the world! This week I’d like to introduce you to Marianne Cooper, Ph.D.. Marianne was referred to me by Lori Nishiura Mackenzie, Executive Director of the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University, who I had the pleasure of working with last year, where Marianne is a sociologist. Marianne is a super busy lady. She was the lead researcher for Facebook COO & Leanin.org Founder Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In, is an affiliate at The Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality; and an author of the recently published book Cut Adrift: Families in Insecure Times.  

After starting our photo shoot in the studio, we headed out for a photo adventure and had a lot of fun finding a spot for the location portion of Marianne’s professional portrait shoot. We ended up on Grand Avenue in the flourishing Uptown district of Oakland, where Marianne was surrounded by people on the bustling street, some of whom were gathered for one of the last World Cup games. A perfect location to capture her in the field, although in this case the sociologist was probably being observed as much as she was observing! We even enlisted the help of some pedestrians for some of our shots.  I love my studio, but It’s always fun to be out on the street for a project.
Sheryl Sandberg has already read Marianne’s book; here’s what she had to say about it: “In this powerful book, Marianne Cooper weaves together carefully researched data about growing economic insecurity and gripping stories of families coping with these trends. Cooper has written an intimate look into what families are up against and the strategies they use to navigate the challenges they face. Cut Adrift provides a compelling examination of the pressing economic issues of our time.” 

Maria Shriver also spoke with Marianne about the book. Their interview is featured on NBC News. In it, Marianne explains her inspiration for the work: “What I had seen in reading a lot about growing inequality and growing economic insecurity, was a lot of data and a lot of statistics. All of that is really important to understand how and why inequality is growing, which groups of Americans are more effected than others, and how we’re pulling apart. But I felt like the human face on this story was really missing, and somebody needed to go out and actually interview and talk with people, from rich to poor, to really understand what this means in people’s everyday lives and how they’re coping with such powerful forces.”

On September 9th, both Marianne Cooper and Sheryl Sandberg will be the featured speakers at The Commonwealth Club in a talk titled The Anxieties of Modern Families. The event will take place at San Francisco’s Castro Theatre. Get your tickets now; this one will definitely sell out!


877-881-7221 | nancyrothstein.comnancy@nancyrothstein.com