Story by Liesel Schmidt
After retiring from the Army in 2017, Erinn Roth used her love of baking as a way to stay busy in civilian life, though it was the loss of her mother that propelled her to launch her own business. “My family's whole world was devastated by her loss,” says Roth. “She was the center of our family's universe. After the funeral, I was in a severe depressive funk until one day in February, something told me to get up off my butt and start my business. So as an eternal tribute to my mother, I named the business after her. She is Ms. Jo. I want the entire world to know the profound impact she had on our lives.”
A graduate of the pastry program at L'Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Maryland, Roth has both natural skill and refined technique that she brings to Ms. Jo’s Petite Sweets. “It's my mother's name, so I work hard to preserve her memory,” she says. “I also work to maintain excellence in all that I do.”
Roth supports the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America because of its wide impact on the African American population and also because of her own experience with it. Roth is also passionate about the need for women to protect their heart health too. “The GO RED movement is vital in ensuring that women are educated about heart disease and its underlying symptoms,” she says. “As the number one killer of women, this is incredibly important for all of us.”
“Desserts are my passion. I started my business just creating dessert masterpieces until a corporate client asked if I did heavy hors d'oeuvres. My mom had a saying that if you want to hear God laugh, tell Him your plan.'
Being part of the community of Alexandria, she tries to make an impact by, as she says, “Simply showing up and supporting worthy community causes. When I'm available, I volunteer to support other organizations.'
Join the movement. Raise Awareness. Go red.