Emilee dziuk

cofounder of gara skincare, ojai, ca

“I’m Dick Dziuk from Delta.” That was the oft-heard greeting when Emilee Dziuk’s dad met someone new. Emilee grew up in that very small town in the western desert of Utah, where she was surrounded by nature, always playing outside, though extremes of brutal heat and bitter cold were the norm.

When Emilee’s grandparents moved to Delta, she would spend her days outdoors with her grandmother, an avid birdwatcher and gardener who cherished her irises and geraniums. Although she found other distractions in her wilder teenage years, Emilee was rooted in family, land, and  her connection to nature.

With her fiancé Paul, Emilee is cofounder of organic GARA Skincare. Their goals and accomplishments are constantly changing and evolving, but they make it a practice to consciously put some energy into the business every day. Whether its education, formulation, editing or experimenting, they spend some time, each day, in the lab or in the field. Emilee loves working with plants, developing a relationship with the natural world, and sharing that knowledge with those who want to learn.

Although the industry presents its own set of challenges, Emilee believes that her toughest and most beautiful challenge is her own self. Whether its confidence, procrastination, emotion, or self-restraint, she has realized that she possesses all those qualities for failure or success. 

Emilee’s passions are greatly influenced by the art in everyday environments. Beauty and wonder is everywhere, she says, “and we are surrounded by art in motion in our everyday environment, whether it be city of forest. It’s simply a matter of perspective.”