Inspiring Lives Magazine Spring 2017: Issue 4 - Page 49

JESS BRANAS In Tune with What Women Want, Dream of, and Deserve By Suzanne Hobbs • Photography by James Ray W hether she’s dressed in a tux at a red-carpet event or out walk- ing her dog Nacho, Jess Branas loves life, and it shows. She’s known for her fantastic smile that draws people to her. Sometimes, it’s as if every- one wants to talk to her. Her message, like her smile, is powerful and inspir- ing. “Women are such beautiful creatures,” she said. “I want women to know they have so much to offer.” To do this, Branas has branched out over the years. Today, she’s not just a well-loved high school Spanish teacher in New Jersey, but also a popular LGBT dat- ing coach and radio personality coast to coast with her podcast, “Drinks with Jess.” More recently, she has added best-selling author to her resume with her two books, written from the heart. Seeking Her, Knowing You and Zero to Ninety focus on relationship advice and how to work for what you want from the inside out. Her honest life lessons come from her own expe- riences, good or bad, joyful or heartbreaking. When she spoke of her mission and life message, Branas said, “I love people. I have a lot to share with others. It doesn’t matter what community you are in, gay or straight, my message is resonating. That makes me so happy.” As a relationship expert among the LGBT com- munity, she has been the voice for women struggling not only with relationships but also with themselves. Her insightful knowledge of personal growth and re- lationships is available for anyone who wants to listen, though. “I’m honored that people not only in the LGBT community want to hear my message. That’s what keeps me going, the love from my fans.” “Jess helped make me feel alive again. I’m stepping out of my box and throwing that box away ‘like a boss.’” —Elaine A Grasso SPRING 2017 INSPIRING LIVES 49