Grandma’s Story Box was founded on the desire to capture as many real life stories as possible. More than that, we want to offer a place to reflect, connect  and preserve the unique perspective each of us brings to this world. For ourselves, and for those we love.

Our Founders

Linda Tietje
With over a decade of marketing and advertising experience, Linda is passionate about capturing stories that have the power to transform. Since the fall of 2020 she is bringing her passion and experience to a cause she deeply believes in: Preserving real life stories for generations to come.
 
 
Anika Roberts
As an organizational development consultant, Anika worked with teams and leaders in the private and public sector to create unmatched company cultures. Her decade-long experience set Storyna up to grow an unmatched team that deeply cares about each and every storyteller we serve.

 

 

Our Advisory Board

 
Rich Last
Richard Last is a recognized leader and pioneer in the U.S. digital retailing industry. Founder of JCPenney.com, he is a visionary who led one of America’s leading retailers to be the first online in 1994 and the first to achieve $1 billion in sales. As Chairman Emeritus of Shop.org, he has served on the Board for the past 13 years.  Rich also served concurrently for 4 years on the Board of Directors of the National Retail Federation. After 37 years of service at Penney, he retired and created the Digital Retailing Degree Program at the University of North Texas College of Merchandising, Hospitality, and Tourism.  A tireless retail advocate, Last is also Faculty Advisor to the NRF Student Association at UNT.
 
Rich Hollander
Rich Hollander is founder and managing partner of Axcelora. With more than 40 years in the retail industry, Rich brings a vast array of experience and contacts to his work. After a 25 year career with Radio Shack and Tandy Corporation that led him to the top of the organization, Rich took on the challenge of running a retail start-up.  He then joined Buxton and over the span of 9 years helped build them into a premier retail analytics company. Rich then spent two years helping grow MasterCard Truaxis, a Bay Area big data start-up focused on retailers.  By developing a sales philosophy of actively listening to the customer, Rich has created an impressive record of success in the retail industry.

 

 

Our Story…

When I was in my early 20s I talked to my grandmother about writing her story. Born into Nazi-Germany, her life held so much pain, perseverance, lessons for me, my children, their children and the generations to come. Stories too valuable to loose.
 
At the time, I was taking sociology classes in college on qualitative research that fascinated me. Specifically the narrative interview that allowed researchers to uncover long-forgotten memories seemed like such a treasure. So I approached my grandmother about interviewing her, recording her storytelling and transcribing it, but the prospect of being recorded and share all her memories with me – raw and unedited – did not feel right to her. Life got busy and the idea fell by the wayside. But “Oma” did try to write down her story for us. When she shared it eventually, she had summarized her 70+ years on 2 pages.
 

“I hope to bring countless stories to life that would have gone untold like the one of my grandmother. Stories that deserve to be told. Stories that will be treasures for those who capture them and those who learn from them.”

 
Writing has always been a part of me. From childhood journaling, to made-up newspapers for my parents, to countless internships at editorial departments in my teens – capturing stories on paper has been a way of life. I wrote my first little love story at 16 , my first (short) autobiography at 24. It is sitting in our safe now, waiting to be re-read a thousand times over. I’m so grateful to have captured my 24-year old view of the world. On myself. And I can’t wait to share it with my children one day.
Over the years I heard from family members and friends again and again that the idea of capturing their story in writing just seemed too overwhelming. They didn’t know where to start. How to keep going.
It was the loss of my grandmother’s story and the joy of being able to capture my own that sparked the idea for Grandma’s Story Box. After sitting on the idea for a decade, I finally decided to partner up with my cousin and fellow storyteller Anika.
 
Together, we hope to bring countless stories to life that would have gone untold – like the one of our grandmother. We believe that all stories – happy or sad or angry or funny – deserve to be told. We believe that all stories will be treasures for those who capture them and those who get to learn from them. We believe it stories that carry our life’s work into the future. Join us by sharing yours.

— Linda & Anika