How the Death of Her Parents Led Her To Create and Launch A Superfood Protein Bar


Our guest today, Ashley Nickelsen, was born and raised in the often-forgotten NYC borough, Statin Island. She was an only child and the love of her parent’s life. Ashley says her family was lower middle class and often talked about the family having “money issues.” Her father was a hardworking and grateful man who worked three jobs to keep everything afloat.

She was a self-proclaimed “Over involved college student” as she poured all her time and energy into her job as a Resident Assistant while studying for her degree in biochemistry and food science at NYU. The love for her role as a resident assistant led her to pursue a master’s in counselling while taking on a job as Student Resident Director.

Ashley has fought two significant fights of her young life as she lost her precious parents to cancer within a few years of each other. As depressed as a young girl in her 20s can be due to caring for two suffering parents, Ashley became hooked on snacks high in sugar and dangerous for her health.

With a background in food science & nutrition and in search of a better snack to feed herself and her parents, she developed a bar that not only had a clean ingredient profile but also served a purpose. She wanted a snack that boosted energy recharged the brain, and lowered stress levels.

As a tribute to her parents, who were battling, Ashley came up with the first Protein Bar with a Purpose™. When it came to naming the bar, she wanted to honour her parents in some way, so she decided to incorporate the family mantra her parents would often say, “Be BOLD, TENACIOUS & RESILIENT,” otherwise known as BTR in her house.” That’s how it all began. As a simple idea in a hospital cafeteria and – BTR Bar was born.

In today’s episode of the Plant-based profit show, Ashley takes us through her journey of founding and growing her young business as a solopreneur. She also shares some of her innovative social media marketing techniques and exciting news on future launches.

It fits well when we say that Ashely’s entire career has been dedicated to her parents and every inspiration, they have given her.