We’re SecondActWomen

We know our value. Society has yet to, but we’re working on it.

We’re a group of real 40 & 50+ women carving out our own path with purposeful intent at an un-freaking-stoppable rate. We know that today, we’re steadily losing our opportunity to stay in the workplace, pivot careers, and receive funding for our businesses and it’s maddening. As the one and only Oprah said once, “We live in a youth-obsessed culture” that sees women 40 & 50+ as past their prime, but nothing could be farther from the truth. [Can we get an Amen!].

We’re living life in full color because after all, 50 is the new 50.

Two Women on a Mission

Changing perspectives one conversation at a time.

So, you’re probably asking yourself, “Who are these women who dropped everything to fight for gender equality?”  Well, the answer is two friends who couldn’t get a job at 51 and 46 when they started SecondActWomen. Yep. Gendered ageism happened to Barbara and Lupe and they decided to do something about it and build a company based on helping and supporting other women, just like them trying to get a leg up.

Barbara Brooks, 54

Founder & CEO

Barbara founded the company in 2018 when she couldn’t get back into corporate America, which, at the time she was only 51. So, “aged out” of corporate, she gathered more than a few friends to help her launch SecondActWomen including her former business partner, Guadalupe Hirt. Taking a step back, Barbara has an award-winning marketing career and accidentally stepped into entrepreneurship in 2011, launching three businesses, and becoming an active board member for several women’s and children’s non-profits. Today, as a quadruple minority — as a black woman at 54 who stands at 5’11 (without her heels), she is a sought-after #agepositivity speaker, thought leader, and female champion that’s helping this community design the businesses, careers, and lives they desire in middlescence.

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A 29-year marketing and public relations specialist, Barbara launched her award-winning career in the shopping center industry where she oversaw regional and super-regional malls and downtown districts like Trolley Square in Salt Lake City, Sundance Square in Fort Worth, and Fashion Show Mall in Las Vegas. In 2001, she began an eight-year career in broadcasting where she worked as a senior sales and business development representative at I Heart Radio, CBS Radio, and Gannett before returning to shopping centers where she marketed Denver’s own, Park Meadows Retail Resort.

In 2011, Barbara stepped into her own second act when she launched her first entrepreneurial venture, Brooks Marketing Group, a boutique marketing, and public relations agency. She then went on to co-launch DECIBEL Marketing, a marketing and PR firm in 2016 with now SecondActWomen business partner Guadalupe. As a three-time entrepreneur, Barbara is a powerhouse community leader and public speaker with the vision, savvy, and heart to inspire women 40 & 50+ to take their careers and lives off autopilot.

A military brat born in France and hailing from Colorado Springs, Barbara graduated from Colorado State University and is a member of Sigma Kappa Sorority. She calls Denver home with her 4-pound pup Riley B.

Recognition and Awards

Barbara received several awards and accolades from the International Council of Shopping Centers for producing high-level marketing and sales programs, public relations strategies, and special events. She has been a featured speaker and panelist at non-profit, community, and corporate events and has graced the pages of Forbes, the Denver Post, Business Den, Daily Blast Live, Colorado Business Magazine, and various TV news segments. She was also recently recognized as a semi-finalist for Forbes’s inaugural list of Women 50 Over 50.

Giving Back

Sense of Security, Board Vice President

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, St. Jude Glamour + Giving Denver two-time Chairwoman

Children's Hospital Colorado, Development Committee Volunteer

Colorado Firefighter Calendar, Founding Board Member

Ronald McDonald House, Salt Lake City, Board Member

Guadalupe Hirt, 48

Co-Founder & COO

Guadalupe Hirt [48] is a GenX Boomer advocate, speaker, and thought leader working to rescript the ageist narrative waged against women over 40 in society and corporate America. She is the co-founder of SecondActWomen, a social entrepreneurship company that delivers high-level IRL, virtual, and digital media programs for women 40 & 50+. A triple minority based on gender, ethnicity, and age, Lupe offers a unique lens regarding the social, workplace, and internal challenges middlescent women navigate daily. Lupe and her business partner Barbara Brooks have been featured in media like Forbes, MarketWatch, Next Avenue, Daily Blast, Denver Post, and Lioness. Prior to SecondActWomen, she was a public relations specialist turned four-time entrepreneur, cultural author, and documentary associate producer. Lupe graduated from Santa Clara University and lives in Colorado.

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A 26-year public relations professional turned four-time entrepreneur and social justice advocate, Guadalupe now champions women’s issues and is helping breakdown female ageist bias that lingers in corporate America and society. Most recently, she worked as an associate producer on a short-subject documentary that explored the intersection of culture, identity and belonging from the lens of first-generation American born Latinos. During this time, she also co-authored a cultural workbook that helps middle school and high school teachers bring this important conversation into the classroom.

Her entrepreneurial journey began in 1991 when she first launched MindSpeak Public Relations to provide strategy and programs to drive results for the hospitality, travel and tourism industry in Colorado. Soon after, she co-launched RedSlate Studios, a video production agency and then went on to co-launch DECIBEL Marketing, a marketing and PR firm in 2016 with now SecondActWomen business partner Barbara Brooks.

Through her work with SecondActWomen, she has been a guest speaker and panelist and has been featured in media outlets like KUNC, NPR Denver affiliate, the Denver Post, Business Den, Daily Blast Live, and Lioness. A California native, she graduated from Santa Clara University and now resides in northern Colorado.

Giving Back

Project PEACE, volunteer and interim board member

Girl Scouts of America, Troop Co-Leader

Boy Scouts of America, Awards Chairperson

Bolder Boulder, Race Volunteer

Meet Our Teammates

Keeping the money with the SHEconomy of women 40 & 50+

Angie Viehman, Clutch Businesses

Online store + product sales strategy for SA|W

Angie Viehman helps female entrepreneurs go from hustle to flow by automating and streamlining their operations…aka doing a whole lot more with less. Clients get back 30% of their time, increase revenue 4x and find greater passion. They spend more time spreading their special sauce and less time on the busy #werk.

Angie recently launched a course that shows women how to build a profitable e-commerce store in less than a day. They’re able to replace their full-time income, make their own hours, and love what they do.

Brenda Mercer, Event Strategist at Maritz Global Events

Membership assistance with SA|W

Brenda is a solutions provider in the hospitality industry, helping clients find the perfect site for their meetings, incentive trips, and conferences.  She leverages the extensive global relationships that Maritz Global Events has built across the industry with suppliers and hotel partners providing in-depth sourcing, hotel contract expertise, and risk mitigation for my clients from concept to completion.

As the liaison between clients and industry partners, she understands critical needs and objectives for each client program — the key to exceeding expectations.

Sharon Thomas

Marketing + event assistance for SA|W

Sharon Thomas (48) is an award-winning rainmaker with more than 20 years of experience growing revenue. She has been instrumental in the success of multiple start-ups. Sharon is passionate about relationships and connecting people.  She is most proud of her significant role in the great success story of The Bump, growing revenue every year from the startup phase through corporate acquisition.

Sharon started her own consulting business in 2018 helping a multitude of companies and non-profits grow their revenue through strategic partnerships.

Marjorie Wallwey, Bliss Marketing LLC

Content editor + consultant for SA|W

Through her writing and editing, Marjorie Wallwey helps businesses of all sizes communicate clearly, relatably, and effectively with their important stakeholders. With more than 30 years of experience, she helps businesses inform, educate, persuade, and relate to build brand identity and awareness, purchase intent, loyalty, and referrals. Call on her when you’re not sure what to say, whether what you’re saying reflects you accurately, how to say it, to whom you should say it, and/or whether you’re saying it as impactfully as possible. Fun facts: Marjorie is also a patented inventor and created a workshop for women to explore entrepreneurship.

Meet Our Inspiration and Support

The powerhouse women (and pooches) behind Barbara and Lupe

My heart. My backbone. My love.

Bobbie Brooks [84] Colorado Springs by way of her hometown of Houston, Texas and Riley B.

Mi luz. Mi guía. Mi roca.

Victoria Montes [80] San Jose by way of León, Guanajuato, Mexico and Mr. Rigby.

How It All Came to Be – in Video

From the jump, we insisted on changing “our” narrative.