About Us




Girl with Grit Program was officially started by Blythe Zemel in January of 2021. Blythe became aware of that we often overlook teaching girls some fundamental skills. With only a background in art, she started pulling together a board of women that she felt could saturate skills, she herself were missing, into young girls and women to help her. She started the grassroots non-profit program funded solely by her other job, and it officially became self-sustaining through our classes and workshops, members, and donors in July 2021.


First joining our board was Staci Andrews, Retired Navy and Entrepreneur. Staci has run multiple successful businesses in the San Antonio area. Staci brings that expertise not only to serve our board, but also to our makers when it comes to merchandising, hospitality, and more.


Briana Huhn, our Trades Director,  has been a welder/fabricator for 11 years across multiple industries. In addition to welding, Briana shares her love of the trades with children through a Minnesota based nonprofit, Big Ideas Inc. Her main goal is to help end the stigma that the trades are second rate. Her metalworking skills earned her a spot on Motortrend’s ‘Bitchin Bootcamp’ and Discovery Channel’s ‘Monster Garage’.


Board Member, Lori O’Rourke is the proud mom to 4 of our Girls with Grit. She has a Master’s degree in Educational Psychology and an Education Specialist degree (Ed.S.) in School Psychology is responsible for heading our Markets and Entrepreneur Program along with another board mamber that works for USAA, Judy Jehnke. 


We are also assisted by other strong women in our Board. Brooke Dorman, a speech pathologist and director of one of the largest homeschool communities in our area. Janie Sellers assists with STEM and is owner of STEMtastic. Other support comes from Lauren Taylor, with her Master’s in Education and years of classroom experience and Marsha Tucker, a retired Executive Director of a large nonprofit educational speaker platform in Houston TX. We also are joined by Makers such as Emma Dietert, businesswomen like Stephani Risinger, artists like Paula VM, and fitness enthusiasts like Janeen Castillo. We also bring Janeen and Rachel Smith to help us be better inclusive. 


In September 2022, Girl with Grit officially opened a Co-ed Community Makerspace COME AND MAKE IT! to share our love of making.


Contact Information:
Blythe Zemel, Founding President and Executive Director, info@girlwithgrit.com
Staci Andrew, Vice President
Briana Huhn, Trades Director, trades@girlwithgrit.com
Lori O’ Rourke and Judy Jehnke, Entrepreneur Program, markets@girlwithgrit.com
General assistance: assistant@girlwithgrit.com