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Odari earns Junior Achievement honor for her business

Senior+Kavya+Odari+overcomes+struggles+and+doubt+to+establish+small+cosmetics+business.+
Photo Courtesy Kavya Odari
Senior Kavya Odari overcomes struggles and doubt to establish small cosmetics business.

Senior and small business owner Kavya Odari has taken her entrepreneurial aspirations to new heights with her recent recognition from the 18 Under Eighteen program through Junior Achievement of Western Pennsylvania. 

The 18 Under Eighteen program recognizes students ages 10 to 18 for extraordinary business achievements in Western Pennsylvania.

Odari started her business, K.O. Cosmetics, in 2020 with aspirations to empower South Asian people, such as herself, through makeup products.

“The storyline of my business was to empower brown women because my whole life, I have been put down as a brown person due to my body hair and facial appearance,” Odari said. 

Odari makes lip glosses, lash serums, and lip scrubs that are vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free. She is also working on more products to launch. Odari has also been selling her products at local Nepali stores, beauty salons, and events around the area.

History teacher Christopher Relisono nominated her for the 18 Under Eighteen recognition, and then Odari moved on to a series of interviews before earning the honor. 

“I was pretty shocked because I did not think I was capable enough to be recognized as someone who is a high achiever,” Odari said. 

Relisono said Odari’s involvement within the Junior Achievement recognition program would further build her entrepreneurial skills. 

“Having Kavya in class, she told me the story of how she was starting her own company and the interesting things she was doing to get her brand off the ground,” Relisono said. “I thought that the 18 Under Eighteen program would be great to shine a spotlight on that and how hard she works and how amazing of a person she is.” 

Odari aspires to pursue business law as a career. But she also hopes to expand her business to include philanthropy work. She wants to establish a nonprofit aiming to help Bhutanese people who went through the Bhutanese-Nepali crisis, which was the ethnic cleansing and government-led displacement of Nepalis in Bhutan. 

“I want to donate 20 percent of my profits to the nonprofit organization. I also want to be a lawyer so I can bring justice to those who need it, as my dad and his whole family are victims of the Bhutanese-Nepali crisis,” Odari said. 

The K.O. Cosmetics website can be found at: https://thekocosmetics.square.site

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Tumi Ojo, Entertainment Editor
Entertainment Editor Tumi Ojo is a senior and a fourth-year member of the Purbalite. She can be found talking with friends, drawing, listening to music, or napping.
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