Welcome to Second Life, a podcast spotlighting successful women who’ve made major career changes—and fearlessly mastered the pivot. Hosted by Hillary Kerr, co-founder and chief content officer at Who What Wear, each episode will give you a direct line to women who are game changers in their fields. Subscribe to Second Life on Apple Podcasts and Spotify and stay tuned.
If you’re familiar with the competitive world of tennis, there’s no doubt that you know Maria Sharapova is an absolute powerhouse. An iconic world-class tennis champion, ranked #1 in the world by the WTA five times, Sharapova moved to the US at just six years old to pursue a tennis career and quickly rose to the top at age 14. Sharapova won the prestigious Wimbledon at age 17, which would make the first of her five career Grand Slam titles. Impressively, Sharapova was the 7th female player in the open era to complete the career Grand Slam and the first female athlete to serve as the Russian delegation’s Olympic flag-bearer. To say Sharapova’s accomplishments as an athlete are inspiring is an understatement.
And while Sharapova’s tennis achievements are monumental, her career off the court is just as impressive. From an early age, Sharapova gained valuable skills as a businesswoman through her various sponsorships and endorsement deals with big-name brands like Nike, Evian, and Porsche. In 2012, Sharapova embarked on her venture outside of tennis (and a bit sweeter): Sugarpova, a premium confection line featuring vibrant flavors of chocolates, truffles, and gummies, designed to be a much-deserved piece of indulgence. Then in 2017—yes, there is more, Sharapova became a New York Times best-selling author with her inspiring autobiography, Unstoppable: My Life so Far. And in February of this year, after 28 years of living the rigorous life of a professional athlete, Sharapova announced her retirement in a first-person piece epublished in Vanity Fair and Vogue titled “Tennis—I’m Saying Goodbye.”
Sharapova’s amalgamation of valuable life experiences has played a significant role in where she is today. She is now serving as a strategic investor and advisor in synergistic brands like Supergoop!, Bala Bangles, Therabody, and Chief Athletic Officer to a new online education platform taught by professional sports icons, The Skills. Head to Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or anywhere else you listen to subscribe to Second Life and to hear about how Sharapova has applied her past learning experiences in both life and tennis to her career now to help strategically grow businesses that share her same passions.