Haile Thomas’s resume is shiny enough to make any business leader jealous: she’s given two TEDx talks and was a guest of First Lady Michelle Obama’s at the 2013 State of the Union Address.
Thomas may only be 15, but over the past few years, she’s become a fierce health advocate. After her father was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, she and her family began implementing a healthy lifestyle regimen; her father reversed the disease.
With her mom’s help, Thomas learned how to cook and launched her own youth health organization called HAPPY in effort to fight conditions like diabetes and childhood obesity.
“[My mom] saw the results that happened in our family and realized, along with me, that kids were lacking this information and resources to learn about healthy eating,” says Thomas who was recently featured on Fortune’s 18 Under 18 list.
In September, Thomas and her family moved from Arizona to New York in order to expand her business. She struck a partnership with Harlem Grown, a nonprofit that provides education in urban farming, sustainability, and nutrition. Thomas is also creating “HAPPY kits,” boxes she will send to schools containing cooking class supplies for teachers and a learning management system for students. The Harlem Grown partnership gives Thomas access to six schools and more than 1,800 students.
When she’s not working or studying, Thomas makes time for a social life by playing tennis, going shopping with friends or trying new restaurants.
And where does Thomas see herself in 20 years? (“Oh gosh that’s really far away. I’d be 35? Jeez.”). She plans to run a health coaching business, make her first million and expand her brand internationally.
Thomas joined Fortune for a new weekly series called Founder Friday. Watch this video to hear her insights on living a balanced life as a teen entrepreneur.