Claire Crossley – WOMAN of ACTION

A Celebration of Women

is elated to Celebrate the Life of yet another trailblazer sharing her courage and strength with the Women of our World.

This awesome powerhouse has Taken Action, turning at that ‘fork in the road’ and has decided to devote her life to the Single Mothers of our World. With her new initiative, thousands of Single Moms will be able to network, find careers, find mentorship, mentor each other and so much more.

Celebrate this Success Story !!!



Claire Crossley


My name is Claire and I was a mom at 17 years old. By the time I was 19 years old, I decided it was time to seek opportunities because my life was less than desirable for me and my daughter. Despite having only six high school credits at the time, I sought opportunities in post-secondary education and business by attending school and working full-time for the next 15+ years.





Since having my “aha moment” almost 20 years ago, I have completed education to the PhD level (deferred) and I’ve had the opportunity to work with wonderful colleagues in healthcare and adult education. My positions over the years have included manager of business development, facilitator, professor, consultant … to name a few.



In July 2011, I decided to change career paths and launch Single Moms with Big Balls (SMBB) which is a network dedicated to creating opportunities in education and business for single moms. SMBB is currently working with post-secondary institutions, non-profit and private partners on two initiatives, outta the System & into School and a Mentoring Program; both include a component similar to the “bring a student/child to work day” concept by partnering single moms with women in the corporate or small business sectors.





In Memory of Dr. Frank Rutledge

The second scholarship/grant has been named in memory of Dr. Frank Rutledge and the candidate for this upcoming award will be a single mom who currently works in the Critical Care Trauma Centre at London Health Sciences Centre in London, Ontario. Dr. Rutledge was one person who believed in me and supported my efforts to learn and grow on both a professional and personal level.



It would have been easier to work full-time and be satisfied with my salary, as opposed to working and taking on a full university course load at the same time … but Frank often encouraged me with his words, “Kid, you’ll accomplish big things one day!” And now, I have the opportunity to create an award in Frank’s memory in support of other single mothers who do “big things”; while working in the Critical Care Trauma Centre. I am currently working with the Rutledge Family to develop this opportunity so please stay tuned for updates.

The SMBB Scholarship & Grant Program will expand as partnerships continue to develop. I am currently working with three organizations in Toronto; partnerships and the criteria for each scholarship or grant will be announced as they become available.



Additionally, SMBB offers a Grant & Scholarship Program for eligible single moms seeking opportunities in education and business and pro bono consulting & mentoring for single moms on various topics including everything from resume writing to planning and finding resources for starting a small business. Finally, SMBB is currently planning the first “Single Moms in Education & Business Conference” to take place in downtown Toronto in 2012.

SMBB launched less than 3 months ago and has learned some lessons along the way; therefore, the website content and business structure is currently being updated to better serve the SMBB vision of creating opportunities in education and business for single moms. I look forward to announcing these changes by end-October along with new initiatives and two partnership announcements!

As Founder of SMBB, I provide pro-bono consulting to single moms who are ready for a new opportunity. In return, I ask single moms to donate back to SMBB when they become successful. Success means different things to different people so this action will be at the discretion of the giver and could include in-kind services (mentoring and volunteer opportunities on behalf of SMBB, a trade in expertise, etc) or other tax-deductible options.



I am working with two single moms at this time. The first single mom has formal training & expertise in interior design & graphic arts and a fantastic idea with a unique and atypical twist. The second single mom has an innovative product in mind (a product we could all use and enjoy) so exploring the various opportunities for patents, the final product, and using social marketing to sell her new product, this single mom and I are excited to share her success story one day. In fact, we’ll share the process of turning
ideas into successful business opportunities as each unique idea unfolds.



Additionally, I provide pro-bono consulting services to non-profit agencies, organizations, and companies. Again, it will be my heartfelt request that such partners provide tax-deductible donations to help support the SMBB Scholarship and Grant Program. For example, I am currently working with an organization to develop the SMBB Speaker Series and speakers will be invited to share their success stories to an audience of single moms who seek support from other single moms, whether inspiring or tangible support. If you know any single moms who have a story to share, please contact me at or by submitting the contact
form on the SMBB home page.

Lastly, I continue to provide consulting-for-fee to established single moms and to the various organizations I have collaborated with during my professional career in healthcare and education.

SMBB Mentoring Initiative

In addition to pro-bono consulting, I am developing the SMBB Mentoring Initiative in an effort to connect single moms with other single moms (or supporters of) who have expertise in topics you seek – perhaps you seek specific skills or have a specific career path in mind and would like to connect with an “expert in the field.” I will personally mentor in the areas of business development and strategic planning, career coaching and skills (resume writing, interview techniques, etc) as well as resource seeking.

The SMBB Mentoring Initiative will expand to include other mentors; please read the bio’s of the first mentors to join this initiative below.

If you would like to join the mentoring team/recommend a mentor … please submit your information and the area of expertise to

Thank you for the opportunity to share my story with A Celebration of WomenSMBB believes in sharing stories and resources because it often takes just ONE opportunity (which leads to others) to improve the lives of single moms and their children!
Claire Crossley
Founder & Chief Executive Mom

Single Moms with Big Balls

“it’s not another dating site …but don’t take it personal, it’s only business”

I invite you to join me and the SMBB Network:

Twitter @claireSMBB

A Celebration of Women

welcomes this powerhouse into our Alumni of WOMEN of ACTION with open arms and warm hearts,

celebrating her courage to Take Action for one of our worlds most important causes; the Single Mom.

Brava Claire!

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